Guest Post: The “M” Word
A guest post by Mox:
A recent and recurring disagreement that I have been having with my mother centers on the idea of marriage. Ever since I turned 21 and remained single, she has become increasingly worried about my impending marriage or lack thereof. I monotonously reply each time that marriage is not part of my plan, and that if it happens, I’ll let her know.
It doesn’t faze her that I’m barely an adult.
I live in a metropolis, I vote, I’m educated, but I’m also required to marry. For every Muslim girl in the world, this is the purpose of her life, to be married, to serve her husband and through him, enter Heaven.
This is the problem that I have with Muslim marriages, one I’m expected to have.
“Any woman who dies, and her husband is pleased with her, will enter Paradise”
“If a man calls his wife to his bed and she does not come, and he goes to sleep angry with her, the angels will curse her until the morning.”
“If I were to order anyone to prostrate to anyone else, I would have ordered women to prostrate to their husbands.”
The Quran is very clear on this matter, and as you can see, it is not an equal contract between two people. It is blindingly obvious that one party enjoys a higher status than the other. This is what is taught to young girls today, even in 1st world countries like mine.
People do not realize that many Muslim women around the world still play roles akin to that of a slave, and not the fun kind either. My own modern mother is insistent on my marriage because she believes that it will play a large role in my “Muslim life”. She does not see it as possible slavery, she sees it as salvation.
I have to admit, not all Muslim marriages are bad. Some are lucky; they enjoy a happy, respectful and equal marriage. Most though, are not, because alongside the girls who are taught to be obedient, are the boys who are taught to be the man, to keep their women in line, to hit her if she misbehaves.
Because of this sense of entitled power, many women go through their lives being abused by their husbands, all the while both parties thinks that it is the right thing to do. Nothing is being done to help them and, most of the time, they do not want to be helped.
This issue is close to my heart, not only because I’m being blackmailed into marriage, but also because my grandmother was emotionally abused this way. Her husband had a disagreement with her family and as a result of that, he forbade my grandmother from ever seeing them again. She wasn’t allowed to attend her favorite brother’s funeral; she wasn’t allowed to visit her mother in the hospital.
She never did see them again, even on her deathbed.
After it happened, everyone around us congratulated her for being a filial wife and admired her obedience; they emulated her. I was told that her actions were noble and pious. I saw it as mistreatment and it makes me angry.
Millions of women around the world suffer like this every day; their only consolation is a place in Heaven. What is worse is that these acts of abuse are being celebrated as a show of obedience. This is oppression in the 21st century, and it has to end.
Also, now, every time I hear the “M” word, my fight-or-flight responses kicks in, and I flee the room.
Featured image credit: amrufm
Mox is a 22 year old student, aspiring writer, and a closet atheist. She enjoys reading, eating and screaming the word "orgasm." You'd be lucky to find her online cause she's like a ninja!