Sologamy: Online Family Counseling

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The concept of sologamy is being talked about by everyone but no one really knows where it

came from or what it is. With the latest media coverage and the social media’s focus on the first ever instance of self-marriage or sologamy in India by a 24-year-old blogger, Kshama Bindufrom Vadodara has left people baffled and speechless about this new act of marriage in a society that considers marriage as a spiritual and sacred act. Though many thoughts that it was an act of publicity, others thought it was against the cultural values of the society and many others

proposed it to be a new form of self-love. Very often family of a person going for sologamy undergoes a lot of psychological challenges, so it is recommended to seek online family counselling.

Sologamy or self-marriage

Sologamy or self-marriage or autogamy has been described as an act of marrying oneself. This act of marrying oneself is usually done by people around the world with ceremonies that may include their traditions and utilize the same elements of a traditional marriage such as a ring, wedding dress, garlands, prayers, festivities, vows, etc. Though this act of marriage has not been considered legally binding, this concept seems to be gaining more attention and momentum over the decade.

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The main premise assumed behind the act of sologamy is that of self-love and finding oneself worthy of having a ‘happily ever after’ that is commonly portrayed in mainstream media as finding a life partner or a soulmate that will complete one’s life. The new form of marriage seems to be challenging the conventional marriage roles and their meaning, by making a person responsible for their own life and happiness instead of finding it in a legally binding relationship with someone else.

Even though the account of an Indian girl performing the act of sologamy may seem bizarre to many people, the act of sologamy has been traced back to the 90’s when the first claimed account of sologamy seemed to be performed in 1993 by a dental hygienist in the US. It was one of the first public acts of self-marriage attended by close family and friends. Since then there have been many reported instances of self-marriage by people from around the world. Self-marriages have also been depicted in many western movies and shows as well such as “Sex and the City”, Glee, the exes, doctors, Rosa’s wedding, Zoolander 2, etc.

While it has been observed and recorded that most self-married individuals are women, there are few men who have also opted for sologamy; and in addition to the fact that most self-married women were single, there were some married women who choose to marry themselves in addition to their marriage with someone else. (Lahad and Kravel-Tovi, 2019)

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“After my marriage life is not going to alter, accordingly, I’ve always wished not to become a wife but a bride only, “Bindu, 24, narrates in a video story on Instagram. “Now I’m going to live according to my dream from today. This narrative by her dictates the power of self-love and the desire to find one’s worth from within and not from outside. The concept of self-marriage also seems to be an act of empowerment and breaking the shackles of societal pressure on women to marry early and their worth being decided by their marital status by living their dreams with their own selves. In some ways, it can be viewed as an act of feminism where an individual chooses themselves before anyone else. It can be viewed as entering a new healthy relationship with oneself, creating a positive self-image and keeping self at the Center of one’s life; prioritizing self, and accepting oneself for who they are.

Some critics may ridicule self-marriage, suggesting it to be a narcissistic and bizarre expression of self-centered culture (e.g., Weisman, 2017). But the act of sologamy has been observed both in the eastern (collectivistic cuties) and western cultures (individualistic cultures). One of the examples is that the acts of sologamy have also been recorded in Japan, which is considered a collectivistic society. The family members can seek online consultation with the best Online Counselor.

Though no accounts of sologamy are found in the Indian mythology per se, the Greek mythology mentions Narcissus who fell in love with his own reflection and died by losing the will to live because he would only look at his reflection. The term narcissism came from this fixation with oneself that has been tied to mostly the physical appearance and perception of self. The suggestion that sologamy may be an act of a narcissistic person rationalizing their personality in a more modern form seems a little obscure because the act of sologamy may seem to be depicting similar traits of narcissism on the surface but they are different.

Narcissistic personality disorder can be best understood on a spectrum and the prevalence of this disorder is low. Narcissism may be defined by the following characteristics: lack of empathy, grandiosity, a chronic sense of entitlement, and a chronic need to seek out admiration and validation. A person who is narcissistic may want attention and admiration from others which seem to be the claim of critics for sologamy, but the difference lies in the kind of attention beingreceived.

A narcissistic person may want admiration and attention that may favor them, where they may be able to have some transactional benefits from others around them. Whereas,sologamy in the Indian context has received widespread criticism as well as become a topic of mockery in society.

Sologamy as a concept has received attention because of the novelty it brings and often self-love can be confused with narcissism. The act of self-marriage does not provide one with any worldly entitlements or benefits, this act will not provide the person with any enhancement in their social, financial, or political status whatsoever; which again strikes against one of the core components of narcissistic personality traits.

Sologamy may be viewed more positively and in a more progressive manner, a new form of self-love and self-commitment – at the heart of which lies a wellness program, rather than a legal contract. (Lahad and Kravel-Tovi, 2019). In the event, that a person is witnessing symptoms of anxiety, stress, and personality one may seek online consultation with Best Online Clinical Psychologist.

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