Jas and Primrose True Intercultural Union
Jas and Primrose. He is a Sikh Indian and she is Zimbabwe Chinese. Their story:
‘IT CAUSED REAL PROBLEMS WITH HIS FAMILY’: 2009 PRIMROSE KAUR AND JASPREET SINGH
Primrose, 32, is married to Jaz, 27, and the couple, both civil servants, live in Windsor. Primrose, a black Zimbabwean brought up in the UK, is expecting their first child. Jaz is a Punjabi Sikh who was born in Britain. Overcome disapproval: Primrose and Jaz said it took strength to stand by their decision to marry. Overcome disapproval: Primrose and Jaz said it took strength to stand by their decision to marry. PRIMROSE SAYS: When I was 12 my parents sent me to the UK to live with my sister, who is much older than me. They thought I would get a better education in the UK, and I was sent to a Catholic grammar school. After college I began working for an airline authority, which is where I met Jaz. We fell in love — but it caused a lot of problems with his family.
My family were fine about me marrying a Sikh — we are already a mix as my father is half-Chinese — but the Indian view remains that people should not marry outside their culture. Actually, immigrants who have not been in Britain long are accepting, it’s the longer established communities that are less open to change. And it’s very unusual to see couples who are black and Asian. In the Asian community if a man marries a white girl it is just about acceptable, but a black girl? No way. The cultures just aren’t used to mixing.
People have a view that Britain is a highly accepting multicultural society, but there are prejudices that still exist among certain races and religions. What’s surprised me most is actually how few differences there are between Jaz and my outlook. He was actually sent to India for three weeks to meet prospective brides agreed by his parents while he was dating me. They didn’t realise how serious we were, but by then we were in love and when he came home he told his mother that it was me he wanted to marry.
We married in 2009, and had a white wedding at a register office, and then a traditional wedding at a Sikh temple in Southall. My mother couldn’t come over because of the problems in Zimbabwe, but both his parents attended. I haven’t converted, as Jas is not particularly religious, but I think he will encourage our children to go to a Sikh school where they can learn Punjabi. I support this. Because my heritage is already mixed I don’t really have a cultural identity and I think it would be nice for our children to have a stronger sense of where they come from.
JAZ SAYS: It was very difficult for me to pluck up the courage to tell my family that I wanted to marry a black African girl. I In my culture there’s a lot of pressure to marry a girl of the same culture and also caste. A lot of parents disown their children if they make a marriage like this. My parents’ view was that they wanted me to be happy, but my extended family was concerned. It really took strength to stand by our decision. We will aim to bring our children up within both faiths — Sikh and Christian. I actually think it is much more important that they are good people, rather than if they are Sikh or Christian. There are far too many problems in the world caused by people who are overly religious.
Read more from the UK Daily Mail. :