Nadiya Hussain has discussed her experience of an arranged marriage at age 19, saying she initially found the adjustment “harder than she thought” it would be.
Speaking on Loose Women, the popular baker told her fellow panellists how she and her husband Abdal were introduced by their fathers
After speaking on the phone for six months, they only met once before their wedding day and that was the day they got engaged.
Although having been happily married for 11 years, the Great British Bake Off champion said leaving her hometown of Luton to move up to Leeds to live with Abdal was harder than she anticipated.
“I got to 20 [years old] and I realised this is a lot harder than I thought. You really have to live with someone to really know what they’re like.”
Hussain said it took her a year after their marriage to “really know what he’s like”, but joked “11 years later I’m still working him out”.
She also said her husband’s good looks helped, “It’s great to be good looking and to like each other and have that attraction but I think the hard bit is actually after you get married.”
The 31-year-old, who has three children with Abdal said it is “unlikely” she will arrange her children’s marriages when they are older.
“I’d like my kids to go out there and it’s very different to what my life was like 11 years ago and things are going to change for them. And I do not need the hassle of finding them a husband or a wife, so I’ll happily let them go and find their own partners.”
Since storming to victory in a final watched by 13 million people, Hussain has signed a book deal and written columns and recipes for magazines as well as appearing in numerous television programmes.
Abdal, a technical manager, describes his “claim to fame” on Twitter as being the “husband of GBBO 2015 Winner Nadiya”.