Sexuality and Disability

, Volume 37, Issue 1, pp 123–139 | Cite as

Exploring Gender Differences in Choice of Marriage Partner Among Individuals with Visual Impairment

  • Vaidehi ChilwarwarEmail author
  • Sujata Sriram
Original Paper


This paper explores choice of marriage partners among individuals with visual impairment in India. The importance of marriage and the desirability of characteristics and traits in the prospective marriage partners were investigated from 42 individuals with visual impairment in the age group of 18–35 years, in Mumbai, India. Non-probabilistic sampling was used to collect data using an online pre-coded questionnaire, where 35 characteristics of the prospective partner were rated on a 4-point scale, along with ranking 16 traits in order of preference. Descriptive and inferential statistics were used for analysis of data. Marriage was considered important for the sample. Family’s opinions were considered vital in marital decisions, but individual choice was important. Women preferred older partners as compared to men. More women, than men, considered visual impairment of partners an irrelevant determinant for partner selection. Statistically significant gender differences were found in the valuation of characteristics and traits with women valuing good financial prospects, chastity, good behavior towards parents, desire for home and children, and being teetotal, more than men. Men desired a physically attractive partner whereas women valued financial stability. Women valued the traits of easy going, good housekeeper and good earning capacity while men preferred a physically able spouse. There is potential for research on gendered marriage choices, specifically among various marginalized populations. Interaction of cultural practices and marriage preferences of individuals with disability could be further explored.


Marriage Marriage partner Visual impairment Gender differences India 



We wish to convey our gratitude to the organization Voice-Vision (Mumbai) and Ms. Sushmita Bubna for her support and encouragement. The Kamla Nehru Working Women’s hostel at Mumbai, India played a crucial role in accessing participants for the study. The entire team of The International Institute of Knowledge Management, Sri Lanka helped us in presenting this data on an international platform. We express our gratitude to their team and all the participants of our study.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human and animal rights

All procedures performed in this study involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Social SciencesTata Institute of Social SciencesMumbaiIndia
  2. 2.School of Human EcologyTata Institute of Social SciencesMumbaiIndia

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