My Parents Arranged Marriage And My Relationships

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Hey guys,

I spoke a while back about discovering my own relationship disorders which ultimately relate to any type of relationship I got into – whether with a friend, intimate relationship partner or my family.

It’s easier to look back at it now and see how ‘the dots connect’.

In this instance, the dots I think of are the destructive ones – the ones that populated my childhood and indicate a running problem in my life.

Steve Jobs said don’t worry too much about passion projects of yours – if you are passionate about something then absolutely pursue it and in time it will connect.

And I mention Jobs; because ultimately it’s been self-education that saved me.

From reading up on people like Jobs – and seeing how this belief of Jobs connects to the countless books I went on to read about depression, self-esteem, love as well as entrepreneurship.

I’ve always wanted to improve. I’ve had a burning desire to just be better at whatever the main thing I was working on was –

And these burning desires have also led me to therapy.

Bad relationships have cost me so so much over time. It’s destroyed relationships, massacred them and caused me to question my very being at times.

But as per the title of this email….

Therapy has changed my life – and in this email –

I will begin with the breakdown of my world, what I was hiding from my entire family; and what it did to me.

Strap in.

My problems and my fight through failure have defined me.


“Well, you can f*ck off back to France then if you’re not happy!”

I screamed at Charlene as we then erupted into a blazing argument.

I was frustrated that my French girlfriend had not responded to a message I’d sent her via text message for several hours which caused me all sorts of worry.

What if something had happened?

What was wrong?

Why wasn’t she thinking about me?

Why wasn’t I constantly on her mind?

She was living in Croydon, and I was staying at my mum’s place whilst I was back from university for the summer.

The anger I felt at her not responding to me now for SEVERAL hours in my head felt totally justified.

And my way of dealing with her lack of contact was by opting for a violent, vocal rejection of her that would ignite a chaos of emotion between Charlene and me.

If she didn’t want to/feel like messaging me – well f*ck her then I’d say consciously.

Sub-consciously I was in all sorts of pain and figured the next thing to do was to attempt to ignite fear and anger into Charlene as a means of getting her to respond.

This was after all, what I’d seen my parents go through.

I’d seen them argue almost daily – with my dad saying many hurtful things to my mother and my mother seemingly absorbing it…

And then continuing moving forward as if nothing had happened.

Wow – what a strong woman my mother was, and my poor father didn’t know any better.

Perhaps this was normal though given my parent’s particular set of circumstances

I was a child growing up who had parents that were children themselves.

At 11 and 13 they got married.

The first time they saw each other they got married.

My mum was my dad’s world, and my mum had my dad.

Deepak Shukla's Family

My mum, dad and sister in 2018 – I’m taking the photo at our evening dinner out

This meant they only had each other to rain down upon and share the chaos and turbulence that was their lives.

And coming from India, having an arranged marriage, dropping out of education to become parents to ultimately 5 children and working every hour under the sun to do that was all they knew.

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And this was the model that I had; the template for what constituted a successful relationship.

And so naturally it bled into the relationships that I had in my own life.


This pattern of my explosions became a recurrent theme in my relationship with my parents as well as with Charlene.

And coupled with my desire to have constant contact – it soon became a major factor in our entire relationship breakdown.

The most revealing thing was how I felt when I was away from Charlene.

This was the part that I guess subconsciously scared me. I’d go through complete emotional turmoil if I didn’t hear from her for a few hours.

It was like I had a literal lifeline that was tethered to how regularly we communicated – and as time passed this lifeline would deplete.

And as it depleted I’d become more and more dysfunctional/non-functional in other aspects of my life.

I was 20 years old when we met and full of emotional problems. In my 2nd then 3rd year at uni whilst we were together – and as has since been the case with this issue I’ve faced – I did a fabulous job of hiding my problems.

To discover something wasn’t quite right – you’d have to get to know me pretty well.

I covered up these issues with my personality and desire to be the centre stage when I went out. I lifted weights in the gym, spent a lot of time getting into great shape, rapped and was lively and full of life.

In many respects, my love for exercise was initially perhaps moulded in part due to my insecurities. I was unhappy with how I looked and used weights as a means to get the attention I craved and the acceptance I so badly needed.

My relationship with Charlene fell apart for several reasons ultimately and I have no regrets about us not being together anymore – she wasn’t Daniela – the woman who would change my life in 6 years to come.

In those years during my early 20s, I was ultimately still discovering the magnitude of my problems.

After our turbulent two years, which involved me breaking shelves, shouting, screaming, kicking doors and saying horrible things to Charlene – we broke up.

The biggest regret I had within all of this was that I STILL wasn’t consciously aware there was a significant issue with myself.

Between me calling Steven too much when I was 14 me messaging Charlene too much when I was 21 – I still hadn’t figured it out.

There would be fleeting moments when I’d realise something needed to change – but as with many things in life – as soon as the pain subsided – so did my motivation to change.

If I couldn’t feel it – it didn’t exist.

And given I kept most of this secret – I allowed no one to show me the error of my ways anyway.


It’s funny how the biggest lessons in your life are often such simple ones that take you years to discover.

This has definitely been mine.

And as my life progressed in other areas – in this space it didn’t progress that much at all.

But a new relationship I got into over a year later would change all of that.

It would make me realise that something HAD to change.

This was in 2011.

By this time – Deep Impakt Recordings (I’ll talk about this business – my first true business in my next email) was fully up and running.

Maria was a singer whom I’d met through my recording studio – who after several weeks of chasing would become my girlfriend.

And the physical violence that dominated our relationship would lead to the breakdown and destruction of Deep Impakt Recordings – a business that was on the up and up.

With 200+ clients, calls being received from across the UK to book studio time and the roll-out of the 2nd studio within 8 months of setting up my first studio happening I was on a roll

Music Studio

One pair of the hundreds of clients we had

But; I’d let it all fall to the wayside as a consequence of a relationship that finally broke me.

This will be the subject of my next email as I walk you through how I built & grew this business – right after quitting an amazing corporate job to go back home and live at my mum’s place.