One story always stuck out in my head from the Mahabharat—the tale of Draupadi and how she ended up with five husbands.
Draupadi was a princess, and princesses were married off by swayamvara (which is an awful lot like “the Bachelorette.”) Men had to win certain challenges to win the hand of the princess.
A prince named Arjuna won the princess and brought her back home to his mother. He shouted to his mother “Come see what I won!”
His mother replied without looking, “Whatever it is, share it with your four brothers.”
Momma’s boy that he was, he did as she said. Draupadi married all five brothers.
Her ever-wise friend Krishna explained to her why: “In your past life you fasted and prayed to Shiva to grant you a husband. When he appeared before you to grant you your wish, you gave a long list of all the qualities you wanted in a man. He told you it was nearly impossible to find one man with all those qualities, but you insisted. So now you have five husbands who represent all the qualities you desire.”
I wonder what the moral of this story is. No one’s perfect? Women are too hard to please? Or if you really want the perfect man, you have to have at least five of them?