Live-In Relationship in India – GD/WAT Topic

What is Live-in Relationship?

Don’t judge a book by its cover! When two people in a long-term relationship live together in the same house without getting legally married, they are said to be in a live-in relationship. Couples, especially from the young population, want to enter into marriage only when they make sure that they are compatible and can spend their whole life with each other. And why not? I think everyone has freedom of choice. Let’s explore more about live-in relationship in India.

live-in relationship


Marriage is an important phase of everyone’s life. So, the ‘would be a couple’ has every right to know each other’s goods and bads in the way they want to as just hanging out and meeting on a regular basis is way different than actually living with each other daily.

Well, this is a common trend in western culture and is now a budding trend in India as well. The live-in relationship has been made legal now.

But have live-in relationships found acceptance in India? Couples have to worry about “Chaar log dekhenge to kya kahenge?” scenario!


“Uncommitted relationships can cause an enormous amount of insecurity in people.”- Sadhguru

“Build a friendship before marrying someone. Marry your best friend.”

 Is Live-in Relationship Legal in India?

  • A survey found out that 80% of the millennials believe that the Indian society still considers live-in relationships a huge taboo while 47% find marriage better than living-in with their partner.
  • In Mumbai, about 50% of couples in the 22-28 age group are in live-ins. But, 70% break up within 2 years.


  • The Supreme Court of India recognized the live-in relationship as a valid marriage in which the Court gave legal validity to the 50-year live-in relationship of a couple.
  • The Apex court said that an adult couple can be in a live-in relationship even when the man’s age is below 21 years, the legal age for marriage.


  • The number of cases of breakup in live-in relationships was 30 during 2011-2012, this raised to 42 between April 2012 and March 2013.

Live-in Relationship Law

It is a mutual agreement between the two partners whether to have a live-in relationship or not. Though acceptance of live-in relationships is growing, still it is treated as a taboo in our society. According to me, it is us who decide the culture and make amendments in that so the further generations follow this culture and it gets changed in decades according to the requirements of people.


Also, every culture has its own values, but the societies in India are more conservative and people cannot accept new changes so easily because they are bound by religion and culture.

So, I would say that commitment is an important aspect of any relationship. Hence, the partners need to understand each other very well but without hurting anyone’s sentiments and beliefs.


Benefits of Live-in Relationship
  • Likes dislike, and behaviour of a partner can be known in a better way.
  • Couples can analyze whether their relationship will be compatible in the future or not.
  • Divorce rates will gradually decrease.
  • Breaking up after marriage is more difficult than breaking up before getting married.


  • Marriage will not be due to family pressure or social obligations.
  • A sense of understanding and maturity is developed amongst the partners, which helps them to be with each other in their later life.
  • Domestic violence reduces.
  • Gender Equality is maintained between them as both of them put equal efforts.


  • There is a choice of walking away if they don’t feel that their relationship is healthy enough.
  • It generates trust and love between the partners.


Cons of Live-in Relationship
  • Even in today’s time, men prefer women who are virgin. So, it becomes difficult for women if the live-in relationship does not work.
  • There is no social responsibility. So he/she can misuse this and change partners.


  • This will obviously hurt the sentiments of many communities.
  • Walking away from a relationship without trying to sort out problems is not good.
  • Some people will feel insecure after some time especially girls as the future of their relationship remains uncertain.
  • Children born out of live-in relationships will have to face social stigma.


  • In the case of a breakup, coming out from the relationship will become very difficult and hence, may lead to depression.
  • It may cause a sense of discomfort for the people living around.


  • Most of the time, the live-in relationship goes against the permission of elders.


We cannot say whether a live-in relationship is good or not. Moreover, it is your choice as you have to spend your entire life. Nothing can be said right or wrong, thinking makes it so! So if you feel that you can’t handle the responsibility of marriage without knowing each other and you need space and freedom then you may live-in but also be mentally ready for the consequences in the future.

After all, if the foundation is strong, you can cross every barrier with your loved ones.

Author – Riya Chandra

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