Year 5 to Year 10

In the West, most of us believe in romantic love. Our culture builds an expectation in each of us that we should find that "special someone," fall in love, marry, and live happily ever after. In many non-western cultures, though, there is an different idea -- that the sentiment of romantic love is frivolous and pointless. In those cultures, the elders of families are more likely to contact the elders of other families of similar backgrounds and interests and arrange marriages between the "children." As we are aware from representations in various media, the prospective bride and groom may only meet once the agreement has been reached (and there is no turning back!), or in more "liberal" cultures they may meet once or twice and have some degree of veto power, but the agreement even in these cases is based on what westerners would consider an insignificant knowledge of the prospective partner.

When I was young, my generation's idea of living together out of wedlock was considered a bit scandalous, but society was getting used to it. Today, my generation is older and we might encourage our children to live with boyfrien