An Indian American wife, and mother of two daughters, has seen the stats of marriages — and divorce — in the United States and decided she wanted to provide a platform to help buck the trend.
Malini Bhatia, 37, of Los Angeles by way of New Delhi, is the founder of www.Marriage.com, which she launched last month to provide resources, information and a community to support healthy, happy marriages. It combines expert content with personal stories and fun blog posts to bring positive support to people.
“I always had the desire to work in an area that added meaningful value in people's lives and provided support to people,” Bhatia told India-West. “There was a phase in my life when people close to my heart were really suffering in their relationships, which either led to divorce, separation or just being married for the sake of it and living together despite no emotional or physical connection.”
At the time of a challenging phase in her personal life, Bhatia and her husband acquired the platform, which was a wedding site, and decided to revamp and relaunch it to provide expert advice, resources and positive information about all-things marriage-related.
“We decided to make it our life goal to be in the relationship space providing a positive influence to support healthy and happy marriages,” she explained.
In the U.S., roughly 90 percent of the population gets married, with half of the marriages ending in divorce, Bhatia noted. The divorce rate for subsequent marriages goes even higher, with 67 percent and 73 percent of second and third marriages, respectively, ending in a split, she said.
In addition to the statistics, her passion for supporting people through the journey of building and sustaining positive, healthy relationships drove her to create the platform, she told India-West.
Marriage.com boasts a community of vetted experts who act as advisers to visitors to the Web site.
“Healthy marriages are important for mental and physical health of couple as well as for children,” Bhatia said. “Growing up in a happy home protects children from mental, physical, educational and social problems.”
In terms of what is available for dealing with marriage-related issues, Bhatia said there is a lack of aggregated resources for people looking for a “one-stop shop” for such issues and topics. Marriage.com was created to solve that problem.
“A community like Marriage.com is the first step for those seeking information. After researching a topic, people can then go to a more official resource,” she explained to India-West. “For example, if they are struggling with a cheating spouse, they may find useful resources at Marriage.com, then would realize they may need to seek professional help. So in a sense, Marriage.com is ‘priming the information pump.’”
Among some of the content available on the site include advice articles written by therapists, counselors and professionals; legal articles written by professionals providing legal advice and information about marriage certificates, licenses and other topics; quizzes that users can take to assess various aspects related to their married life; and blog posts discussing recent news and timely topics relating to marriage.
All the experts contributing to the site are verified professionals who have been qualified in this area, Bhatia said.
“We invite marriage experts in various areas and specialties to contribute content to the site based on their focus area,” she said, adding they suggest topics that would interest and benefit the audience in their relationships.
The articles all carry a by-line with details of the author, including a link to get more information about the person’s credentials, allowing Marriage.com to be one of the first introductions between an expert and a person needing advice, she noted.
Bhatia said the site, which is focused on the U.S. in its infancy, is helpful for anyone who is engaged or married and looking for trusted guidance or advice. The plan down the line is to have the site helping people globally.
“From legal topics to tips for maintaining healthy relationships, the Web-based community supports the idea that building sustainable happy marriages requires more than just a license: it demands an ongoing commitment to growth, evolution and relationship education,” Bhatia elaborated about the benefits of the site.
She added that the site, despite being focused on the U.S., has already garnered clicks from a worldwide audience.
“(The worldwide readers) have noticed that most issues and challenges around marriage are the same worldwide despite different locations and backgrounds,” she said.
The Marriage.com founder said the goal for the site in the immediate future is to continue to build on what they have established in the short time since its relaunch, improve the platform to cover more resources and build a stronger community.
The long-term goal, she said, is to provide value in every marriage, supporting more languages and topics to be truly global.
She also has several years of experience working in the public relations and communications industries for companies such as India-based 20:20 Media and Southern California-based companies Scott Public Relations and Chandler Chicco Agency. She has also worked at companies in the tech, healthcare and nonprofit sectors.
Bhatia is a graduate of Jesus and Mary College, where she earned a bachelor’s in economics, and the International Management Institute, earning a master’s degree in business administration and management.