Friday, November 27, 2009
This article topic caught my attention after being shocked at some Sister's facebook images and comments. Facebook and other social media like Twitter and Myspace are now part of “the public domain.” A good rule of thumb to keep in mind, especially when you are on the marriage market, is to never post any photo or write anything that you wouldn't be comfortable with your mother seeing.
The marriage scene has gotten more and more competitive as brothers are having to wait longer and longer to purpose because of financial constraints. And with the advent of all the new social media formats, we have many new ways to embarrass ourselves and cause a lot of fitna.
So what are some basic do's and dont's in public and why are they important to uphold?
1.Dont use profanity period. Its not classy and especially in cultures overseas - ladies dont curse. In addition, you'll be repelling the angels that surround you throughout your day ( except for the two the write your deeds. )Yes I know some people are freaking out right now throwing up the sexism card, and I agree that there does seem to be a double standard when it comes to cursing. No one should curse, but it reflects worse on us, sadly. If you curse, you'll give the wrong impression about yourself – even if you dont mean to. You'll attract the wrong crowd. If you notice that men curse openly around you, this is a bad sign. These guys definitely dont see you as a potential life partner, and they dont respect you. Drop them like a bad habit! With fitna levels so high in our Ummah already, the last thing we need is to give others any reason to talk about us. Cursing will only push potential mates away, in a word, its a turn off.
2.Do attend events that you enjoy and spark your interest. Sporting events, cookouts, volunteering opportunities, college clubs, educational forums, etc...Go to group events that involve things you actually like doing. Who knows, maybe Mr. Right also volunteers at the homeless shelter or likes a good Cricket match. ;)
3.Don't go to bars, clubs or hookah huts. I know this one is obvious, but again, even if it feels like harmless fun, a woman who is serious about becoming a wife shouldn't be exposing herself in that manner. Again, its all about public perception. Sadly, people do talk, and even though Ghriba is haraam, people engage in it all the time. A moment of weakness can cause a lot of damage to your reputation – especially if pics of you doing it end up on the web. Dont give others the opportunity to talk. Many introductions are lost because of Ghriba. Protect yourself by avoiding those situations entirely.
4.Do surround yourself with nice Sisters. Another no brainer, but lately many Sisters are maintaining lots of guy friends. While it feels great to be liked and desirable, surrounding yourself with too many guys can also send the wrong message. “ She's a flirt,” “She's a little loose,” “She LIKES having lots of men around.” Are these assumptions unfair? Yes, they probably are – but when competition for good brothers is so fierce, presenting yourself in the best light possible is a must. That said, who you surround yourself with says a lot about you and your level of Deen – this also includes online mediums like facebook and twitter.
5.Don't wear tight or revealing clothes (in public) – and don't post pics of yourself in them online! A brother who is serious about marriage doesn't want a women who displays herself provacativly in public. I know it feels good to look sexually attractive, but a serious potential husband will want you to keep some of your feminine charms just for him. Modesty really is beautiful! Don't just give lip service to it, make it a part of how you dress and behave in public. This isn't just another religious requirement or a way of protecting yourself, above all its an act of worship.
6.Do let others know that you are serious about finding a spouse. Sometimes introductions happen just because your auntie ran into her friend who happens to have a handsome son! Make sure that people close to you know that you are serious about getting married and finding the right man. Let them know of basic qualities you are looking for, and that you're not just goofing around. If your behavior reflects this sincerity, people will keep you in mind when meeting others and the topic of marriage and spouses comes up. Be sure people are putting you at the top of their recommendation lists.
7.Don't be too friendly with guys. If you're seen as a flirt, constantly joking with guys or hitting up their cyber walls with comments, people will notice. Maintaining a certain level of restraint and haya (shyness) is important. Goof all you want with your girlfriends. Just keep in mind that goofing with guys is read differently by people around you, and guys themselves. Your harmless comments or conversations may mean nothing to you, but they may be sending the wrong message publicly and to the opposite sex as well. If you're seen as 'too friendly' you can be hurting your marriage prospects. Keep the silliness between you and your girls.
8.Do put together a bio and take time to improve yourself. Bio's are the new thing people send when introductions are being considered. Your bio should include important info and specs you'd want a potential suitor to know about you. Its also a good idea to add what you are looking for in a husband. If you have educational goals or requirements, living preferences, anything really. Pictures are optional.
Those eight issues have all come up time and again gatherings and sisters events. Most of them seem pretty obvious, I know, but sometimes its easy to forget ourselves when we are having fun. Enjoy being single and having fun with your friends, improving yourself and preparing for married life. Just try to remember that people are watching, and that you never know when Mr. Right may show up. You want to put your best foot forward at all times. It doesn't mean you cant goof and joke with your girlfriends, just be sure that the image you present in public is one that will attract the right kind of man. :)
This post is a part of our new series "A Sister's guide to getting Married – What They Dont Tell You."
Thursday, November 26, 2009
This series came about after many talks with Muslim Sisters, both born Muslims and converts, discussing important issues that they felt were left out of the the big marriage to-do in halaqas, and at Muslim events.
Getting married is a big deal in any person's life. As Muslim Sisters who live in Western countries this can be particularly challenging, balancing our faith with our culture...and all the other “back home” cultures that matriculate in our local communities. There are all the general halaqas and conference meet-ups that try to encourage single Muslims to mingle and potentially find a life partner, but it seems that most of them leave out some pretty important info that every sister considering marriage should think about.
Issues of Maher (dowry), marriage counseling, paying for the wedding, the honeymoon and kids always seem to be the main themes of these get-togethers. But what about the other very real issues that sisters face when trying to choose a spouse? This new article series hopes to bring to light some of those very important and often ignored phenomenon that go on beneath the surface as Sisters navigate the marriage pool.
“Finding a mate the 2nd time around – helping divorced sisters find a great spouse”, “The Green Card Issue – yes we're going there!”, “Single Sisters Etiquette, do's and dont's in public”, “Things for Older Sisters to Consider when finding a Good Spouse”, “Red Flags to avoid in any situation”, “the Mother-in-Law factor”, “Love across many cultures – deciphering culture vs. faith”, “When to try for Children” “Finding a Spouse Online” - and many more!
Please note: This series is not meant to diminish the general Islamic principles of what to look for in a spouse or our rights as women/wives in Islam. This series is designed to highlight topics not generally covered, but nonetheless important subjects to broach, especially for converts new to the Faith and Muslim community.
Stay tuned and have a happy Eid!
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