A Man’s World

My attempts to put these posts in chronological order has failed a little as I forgot to include this one, written in October 2013.  To an extent I still maintain this to be true – you only have to look at recent controversies that have taken place….can you name some?

This journey which has unfolded has not only been one of the most humbling experiences of my life but a real eye opener.  I never realised how much of a bubble I was brought up in, how little exposure I had in my pre-married life to “bad” people………and bloody hell, there are some real bad eggs out there!

I’ve met a number of  people along my bumpy road.  It’s as though somebody new enters my life at particular stages of my breakup, making me reflect on events of the past.

These past couple of months, I have met woman still going through their own hell.  Not all of these woman are away from their partners.  Many of them don’t work and have been controlled for years through money/financial fear.  That control seeps into most parts of the relationship.  What a hopeless situation to remain in.  “Who will believe me if I tell them what he did?”, one woman said.  I know her husband and I know no one probably will.  These men aren’t the local thugs of the town as you would think but annoyingly “respectable” people, polished and well versed in their religious texts.  They’re the worst types.

“It’s a man’s world”.  Someone made this comment to me after trying to pursue a “khula” (Islamic divorce initiated by the wife) for two years.  “None of these Imams care, they all stick to their boys club”, she sighed.  She never got the khula in the end as her ex finally gave her the divorce……..a day before her sister’s wedding – you can come to your own conclusions as to why he timed it so.

Oh dear.  When I started this post, I didn’t really mean to make it such a depressing read!  I know myself it’s a man’s world out there especially in the Muslim community.  The community is there for a short time, tut tutting at what these men have done, at times ostracising them but eventually they are accepted back.  Even from my own experience, there is a sense of abandonment.  Sheikhs give their advice, know the most private details of your circumstances but essentially you just get left to deal with it.  I can’t say I’ve ever had so much as a “How are you?” when I’ve passed them by on the street.

For those woman I know going through this without any family support, I would love to be there for them although I’m aware that I’m not some sort of ambassador for wounded women of the world.  If I’m honest, I know I can’t really help much, not in the way I would like after all I’m still healing and trying to move forward.

I feel somewhat angry for these woman because despite the work they do and the years they gave to our community, we turn our backs on them when they need us most.

How shameful.




14 Replies to “A Man’s World”

  1. I’ll probably say this as my last comment…we are living in better times…where a woman can live peacefully by herself .. there was a time where a women couldn’t even walk down the street by herself…now she is travelling ..working …competeing with a man and excelling on many levels….we neglect to remember what it could have been like. It’s so easy to focus on the bad …even in a sea of good.
    As far as NAK goes….it’s amazing how…how you spend a whole eternity doing good…when you make one mistake (if it is true) people home in on it and magnify it and multiply it and forget that we are all human and neglect to pick out our own faults..it’s so easy to pick and judge…God is the only judge.

  2. Great topic and interesting discussion Fai. I think that the reality is that often people would prefer to blame the victim than accept that someone they admire could act in such a way. If we accept that, quite often we would need to accept the abuse going on right under our noses and sometimes to us directly by people we know and love. If as a society we keep blaming and shaming the victims into silence then society can continue to pretend that only men in dark alleys commit crimes against women, who apparently deserve it for daring to step out alone when the sun goes down. I know nothing about the NAK scandal and as a white woman who is not Muslim, I know even less about some of the issues you have spoken about in other posts. However, I am a woman. I also think feeling shame is part of being human, however, BEING shamed is something that is used to try to control people it NEVER evokes positive change. LOVE does.

    1. Hi Linda, I love however as a non Muslim women that you’re still able to engage in this conversation. Some really thought provoking points there and reasons for which I never considered as to why victim shaming at times does go on. Thanks for your insight xx let’s love not shame

  3. Thank you for sharing this. Where do i start?! One thing to share here – if we want this to change, our families have got to start calling out misogynistic, abusive behaviour. For that to happen though, we need to have conversations about what abusive behaviour looks like. Often once an action has been named as abusive, it can help a victim acknowledge the status of their relationship, that something is seriously broken in their relationship.

    Shame which is literally a ‘man’ made concept also plays massively into suppressing women to stay in abusive relationships.

    We’ve all got a part to play in addressing these issues. It starts at home.

    1. Perhaps something for a future post! Understanding and calling out misogynistic behaviour! Thank you for your insight xx

  4. Our community has some amnesia when it comes to the actions of particular blokes. Even looking at the big scandal of Weinstein – the women were all vilified in the early years for speaking out against him. That’s where we still haven’t got it right as a society. Speaking out leads to crucifying

    1. Completely agree unfortunately. We have it wrong as a society. Was the #metoo campaign so successful because there was a collective strength in calling these actions out? Perhaps more power in unified voices.

  5. Name some recent scandals?! How about the Noman Ali Khan one! Typical Male, does some morally and emotionally crap things and hey, no consequences!!!!! Manages to still steer a ridiculous following on religion ironically.

    1. We aren’t here to name and Shame people ….it’s a scandal ..that’s it ..we don’t even know if that’s true and each to their own. It’s even more of a shame that you have to resort to mentioning names of people you don’t even know.

      1. Sal, I find it interesting how defensive we become – NAK in particular (unless you were defending Weinstein?). And if I’m honest, I do believe this type of comment to try to silence the conversation is unhelpful. We SHOULD be mentioning it and we SHOULD be talking about it. This is a PUBLIC figure. And can we ignore the fact that so many women came forward in their accusations and that there were interventions made by his colleagues over these accusations? Ofcourse we can’t. We must talk about it. Because silence allows their actions to continue and silence continues to breed shame for these women who came forward.

    2. Unfortunately I do agree Anon. This is probably an extreme example but still one we should explore and take seriously. And on a more worrying note – why after everything that happened was his conference in Glasgow sold out. I find that disturbing.

    3. Not defensive but more righteous to the people we don’t know. Social media spreads a lot of lies. Ok we’ve been hard done by the men in OUR lives but I feel it’s in just to bring someone into this that may be an innocent victim of lies. Not all men are the same and women are guilt of terrible things just as much as men. We can’t pull everything from social media and believe it ..how would that be different from believing something Donald trip posted up? It’s not fair to tar all men with the same brush. I’m a stonch believer in sticking to what and who you know….I’m not sticking up for anyone but I’m a firm believer of …if there is solid proof ..then fair enough…we live in a society of photo shopping on a level we never even knew

      1. I think sometimes we need to acknowledge that there is no way to provide solid proof in some situations. In terms of the NAK controversy, we will probably have to agree to disagree for now x

      2. Ps I don’t think it’s a case of everybody who comments has been hard done by men in their lives. Anon’s comment to me implied she was tired of different attitudes towards the two different sexes. And ofcourse we know as women there’s plenty of things women do that aren’t nice either. However I believe that argument does little to take away from the fact there is a huge privilege which exists in a man’s world than a women’s one.

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