In Bangladesh, a Tradition that Allows Mother and Daughter to Share a Husband

indian bride


In Bangladesh, the Mandi tribe’s matrilineal traditions allow women to pick their husbands, run their households and inherit land. Yet an older tradition, most assumed had died out, allows mother and daughter to marry the same man. Orola Dalbot recounts the day she found out she would not be finding a husband of her own, she was already married to her mother’s.


As a child in rural Bangladesh, Orola Dalbot, 30, liked growing up around her  mother’s second husband, Noten. Her father had died when she was small, and her  mother had remarried. Noten was handsome, with a broad smile. “I thought my  mother was lucky,” Orola says. “I hoped I’d find a husband like him.” When she  hit puberty, however, Orola learned the truth she least expected: She was  already Noten’s wife. Her wedding had occurred when she was 3 years old, in a  joint ceremony with her mother. Following tradition in the matrilineal Mandi tribe, mother and daughter had married the same man.

“I wanted to run away when I found out,” says Orola, sitting in the sunbaked  courtyard of her family home in north-central Bangladesh. “I was shaking with  disbelief.”…Continue Reading

kristin kowlackyABOUT THE CURATOR

Kristin Kownacky is a junior at Flagler College in St. Augustine, Florida, where she is currently working towards a BA in journalism and international studies. It is her dream to travel the world, discovering hidden treasures and writing about each experience. Read her articles on her personal blog, Depart We Now.



Photo by nandadevieast

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