Viral: 20-year-old man marries his employer, a 65-year-old woman, in South Sulawesi

Newlyweds 20-year-old Muhammad Idris and 65-year-old Inade. Photo: Istimewa/Liputan 6
Newlyweds 20-year-old Muhammad Idris and 65-year-old Inade. Photo: Istimewa/Liputan 6

Now we ain’t sayin’ he a gold digger, but a young man in Indonesia’s South Sulawesi province has become the talk of his hometown, and the nation, for marrying a woman more than four decades his senior.

Muhammad Idris, 20, on Wednesday married 65-year-old Inade — whose first husband died in 2015 — and they say it’s love, actually.

“We actually love each other. Maybe we are what’s called soulmates,” Inade told reporters at her wedding, as quoted by Liputan 6.

According to reports, Idris worked as a picker at Inade’s vast clove plantation in South Sulawesi’s Sidrap regency before the two met and fell in love.

Thousands attended their wedding reception, most curious to see the unusual May-December marriage. Among them was the deputy speaker for the South Sulawesi Regional Council (DPRD) Syaharuddin Alrif.

“I was curious so I wanted to see. It so happens the people of this village are close to me. I came straight from [the South Sulawesi capital of] Makassar,” he said.

Although marriages between older men and much younger women are hardly unusual in Indonesia, the opposite is extremely rare. Perhaps the most famous example of such unions was that of then-16-year-old Slamet with 75-year-old Rohaya in South Sumatra last year — by threatening to commit suicide if their families didn’t bless their wedding.

Despite being much younger (technically it’s not even legal for men to get married in Indonesia until they’re 19), Slamet appeared to assume the role of a traditionally misogynistic husband, telling the media he locks up his bride whenever he goes out so “other men won’t bother her”.

Before Slamet and Rohaya, the wedding of a 28-year-old man and an 82-year-old woman also made headlines in Indonesia and around the world.

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