So, it begins…

This blog is not intended for the faint of heart. Rather it is geared towards Muslims who have an interest in discussing love, relationships and sexuality. Perhaps you might be a single person on the quest for love, happily married or still healing from a divorce. This is a welcoming and non judgmental space for all. Welcome.

I am a woman on a mission to find a Muslim husband and lately I’ve realized that there is no space to openly discuss my experiences. So, I’ve created my own. Welcome to MUSLIMnLOVE. This is not a space where I will attempt to explain Islamic rulings. This point needs to be stressed. I am in no way certified and that’s why we have imams and scholars. This blog is based on my experiences, joys, and struggles with being a single Black Muslim woman.

Time to break it down…

The single sista: I understand your struggle. I know you have had your share of bad encounters and awkward sit downs. It’s just the rules of the game, right? You’ve probably heard people say that you have to kiss a ton of frogs before making it to your prince. That’s absolute bull shit. Some of these brothas are just plain whack. I know you wish they would just stop playing games and get with the program. Well, I’m here to share my stories with you. Some are funny and others not so much. Sit back and put your feet up. We have a lot to talk about, SistaQueen.

The inquisitive brotha: You want an insight. An insight into the mind of the single Muslim woman. Perhaps you are looking for tips and pointers. I’m here to help you with that. As a Muslim woman I know its intimidating to approach us but believe me we aren’t about to approach you! So, that kinda leaves us in a conundrum. You know what I’m talking about. Those awkward stares at the ISNA bazaar or  trying to hook up after MSA meetings. I know, it’s not working for you. You just don’t know what the average Muslim sista wants. It’s ok, I feel your pain. So, take that kufi off and get those fruit loops out your beard. You’re ready to learn.

The Salafi: I’m not quite sure why you are reading this but I welcome you into my world! I know you’ve probably said “astagfirullah” under your breath about a dozen times now. It’s ok, I know you are curious. Aren’t we all? Don’t mention it to your bearded gang or niqabi clad sisters. They might ask for a daleel or something. It’s our secret. It might be difficult for you to handle my frankness and if that’s the case I suggest you stop reading now. I wouldn’t want to be responsible for you having a massive heart attack. I have enough on my plate to worry about.

The non-Muslim: You’re probably wondering how we get married. I’m not going to lie because our marriage process is somewhat involved. Parents, dowry’s, cultural crap… Yes, it is a lot. Hopefully I will help you understand and perhaps we’ll reach a point and you’ll see that “courting” isn’t really so different from dating.

Now that we are done with that let me introduce myself! I have been divorced for three and a half years. Such is life, right? I work as an RN and my specialty is emergency medicine. I also have a passion for health care reform so I do a lot of work with those who are under insured or lack health coverage all together. I am a 20-something year old SistaQueen from Chicago. I am of African descent and refer to myself as a daughter of the diaspora. By now you can tell that I am Muslim. Even though I don’t like labels I would probably classify myself as a moderate. This blog is a branch off my Facebook posts.

My family and friends have been encouraging me to blog about my experiences of finding a husband. I have been very candid about this whole process and I intend on remaining so throughout this blog. I appreciate honesty and openness so I hope you do as well.

Let the fun begin!



20 thoughts on “So, it begins…

  1. SoShams says:

    Salaam sista! Absolutely love, love, mad style props. I believe 2-3 weeks ago, upon you inquiring, I told you I’d tell you how I met my husband. I apologize for the passage of time– being sick and El Prego for the first time, my minds just not where it used to be– but if you wouldn’t mind, after having read through your blog and having my memory kick started, I’d like to tell it…
    We met on the 84 Peterson bus going west during the last 10ish days of Ramadan 2012, at around 8:30 on a Monday morning. It was my first Ramadan– I had taken my shahada that previous December– and at the time I was just trying to keep up with life, everything, and not getting totally lost in this new life and perspective I felt I had been searching my entire life for. See, prior to that particular Monday a lot had changed in my life. I was struggling with legal cases due to a previous place of employment– a literal Dante’s Infernoing layer of physical/psychological hell– being momentarily kicked out of my house for my new found faith, moving in with an awesome sista, distance between friends and family, and financial struggles. The only thing that was keeping me going was Allah (swt) and this innate feeling that the Most High had me, that as long as I kept up and kept on trying He had me and I would be just fine. I had moved in with that sista without having a job and hardly a penny to my name, and with two weeks until rent was due I found myself three days prior to that fateful Monday, on a Friday evening, just praying that Allah (swt) put me in my proper place. I was constantly prying– not for money, not for food, not worldly wealth, and definitely not for a husband– just for Him to put me where I needed to be and where He wanted me to be.
    Sunday I was hired by a family of scholars to nanny for their children and so that following Monday I began at 9am.
    Next day came and I jumped on the bus and looked for MY spot at the back of the bus where no one could bother me. Couldn’t find it, couldn’t even get to it because of how crowded the bus was and the only spot that was open was one right up front. I glanced at the man sitting in the spot next to the open one, he looked up at me, blushed, and instantly looked back down with a little smile and all I could think was, “Oh, he’s really cute, Astaghfirullah, astaghfurullah!” and I sat down. Got off the bus at my stop and that was that. First day of work I had fun with the kids but every now and then I would think of that man and that there was just something… something there, but I brushed it off and didn’t think I’d ever see him again.
    Tuesday morning the 84 Peterson bus came and picked me up and I could hardly keep myself from laughing that you’ve-got-to-be-kidding-me-laugh, because I found myself in the same pericardium. The bus was packed and here was this open spot next to the same man from the day before, so I sat down. The man over to my left turned and asked in an accent I couldn’t place, “Is it by chance that we sat next to each other two days in a row?” And I shook my head and said, “I don’t think so.”
    That entire week we exchanged small talk. I found out he too was Muslim and from Tunisia (had no idea where that was) and I talked about random things my sporadic mind brought up. The weekend came and went, Monday I saw him again, and then Tuesday through Thursday I missed the bus for one reason or another.
    That Thursday, after I got home from work, I asked Allah (swt) that if this man was good for me and my deen and everything, that He would make it easy for me to see that because I am human and weak and can easily be mislead, and if this man was bad then He take him away from my life and keep me safe. See, I asked this because I knew that if I didn’t see him the following day, Friday, I would probably never see him again. Ramadan was almost over and the following week I would be starting earlier than what I had been. So Friday morning came and when I didn’t see him I thought to myself, “Well, that is that and so be it”, and I sat down already staring out the window. Not even two seconds later I saw someone moving towards me out of the corner of my eye and inwardly smiled at my Tunisian stalker– as I had jokingly nicknamed him in my head. He sat down next to me and without missing a beat said, “I didn’t see you for the past three days, I didn’t like that. Can I please have you’re number so that doesn’t happen again?”
    And that’s how we met.
    However, pertaining even more so to the original question you asked– the one detailing how do you know for sure, or how deeply do you have to love someone before you know it’s right, I’ll add this as well.
    Maybe we didn’t do everything exactly as we should have from an Islamic stand point, after exchanging numbers we planned on getting coffee together once Ramadan was over and there was never anyone else there to watch over our conversations and interactions. We hung out at the beach and marveled at the waves while listening to “Fast Car” and singing along. He helped me with my Arabic letters and I taught him to say “men” instead of “mans”. We had a brief conversation revolving around my worries that I wasn’t Arab and what would his family think, where upon he closed the door to that fear with, “You’re Muslim, right? Okay so what’s the problem?” We laughed together, talked on the phone past midnight, texted nonstop, talked about future plans together and all that fun jazz, but there was just something different about him in comparison to any other man I had ever met.
    In the past I always felt on edge, watching and calculating every move they made while feeling that I always had to prove myself; prove that I actually had a brain despite my outside appearance and that I could think for myself. However, with my husband, I never felt that and, personally speaking, as a woman who used to always be on edge– watching out for stalkers, harassers, feeling as though I had to prove something because of the way I looked– that meant the world to me. And when he spoke he spoke softly, in a calm tone that I could listen to for hours. Never once did I think that he was stupid, a joker, player, boy, or immature as I had with sooooo many countless others (even just people in general), and the more that we talked I found that I was talking to a slightly different, male version of myself. A quieter version whose strengths were my weaknesses and vica versa, but a kind of me that I knew none the less and it was seeing that in him that confirmed without a doubt that he was the man for me– I guess because I knew who I was and I knew I could trust myself. So when it comes down to it for me, as silly as it may be, I think it it’s not about loving someone else but knowing who you are as a person and loving who you are.

    • :-) says:

      Oh my! This story is sooooo beautiful! Mabrook on being “El Prego”! May Allah (SWT) grant you an easy pregnancy 🙂 I am a convert as well and your story made me want to just ride buses so I could randomly meet my future husband! . . .LOL. probably not though because I do not think I would be brave enough to give out my number! 🙂 Anyway–Congrats again! Lovely story! May Allah bless you and your husband with happiness 🙂 I feel liked I used a million !! and smiley faces–your story just made me so happy.

    • nomad (not real, but you can always email me if you want to know my real name) says:

      Your last sentence, I agree with it so: It’s about knowing who you are as a person and loving who you are. Thank you for sharing your story. It’s funny in essence you met your husband with that prayer…”if he’s good for me, show me the way. If he’s not, then take him away.” That was how I met my husband, though at the time I didn’t know. I met him through a writing he posted on a good friend’s blog. I didn’t know who he was (nor did my friend, cause my husband just randomly found my friend’s blog and asked if he could start sharing his writing there too), but fell in love on how I perceived his thought was through his writing. Just before I prayed my ‘asr, I said to Allah, “I hope one day I will marry somebody who thinks like him.” And I went on with my days. Not even a month after, through a couple completely unrelated to the blog, I was introduced to this man. After communicating through emails, I found out…that’s right. He’s the man whose writing I fell in love with. Go figure. I’ve been married for 10 years to the same man…and been a mother to his three children.

  2. Amina says:

    I think shedding some light on what can be a complicated process is great, not to mention, much needed. As a single twenty something I know this thing, this finding a soulmate, is the most stressful endeavor.

    • muslimnlove says:

      Amina, I agree that this whole process is extremely stressful. Filtering people out can be a pain but it must be done. lol. You have to have fun while you’re doing it. Please continue reading! See you soon inshAllah 🙂

  3. Lauren Thompson says:

    I absolutely loved reading your posts on Facebook and I love this blog! I am non-Muslim but I have always found the culture interesting and unique. Reading this blog not only gives more insight to your dating world, but also shows no matter what background you’re from, single life can be frustrating and complicated! Best of luck to you and I look forward to more posts!

  4. I am loving your blog. Your humor and wit has me laughing out loud over here. I can’t wait to read more but In Sha Allah I hope it’s not that long of a blog and Allah swt blesses you with the husband of your dreams. 🙂

    • muslimnlove says:

      Basimah, thanks for reading! May we all find someone who soothes our soul and reminds us of good. Ameen. Please come back and read. 🙂

  5. ConvertLearning says:

    Salaam alaikum!
    I am an African-American convert as well and have been thinking a lot about this whole “finding a husband the Islamic way.” I am not sure what your situation is like, but I feel as though it can be a serious challenge when a convert female has all non-Muslim family–who will be here wali? How do explain the husband-hunting process to them? I am not “officially” on the “husband hunt” but I am “actively aware of potentials.”
    Out of curiosity, would be interested in making some kind of post about what in-person interactions are like? (This is weird—making a blog request…sorry!) There is not really a space for me to ask these things. I am just curious as to how a Muslim female and male actually interact with each other while researching potential spouses since in normal social settings we have such limited interaction with the other gender. Like what is the progression from email, phone, in-person? When/where do people meet to discuss things? Coffee shops? In-home with a chaperon/wali? I want to learn more about the female convert experience because all my friends who have shared stories with me are from Muslim Arab or Desi families so they do things more according to religious/cultural traditions.

    Anyway, so if I rambled a bit— sorry! I am running on low sleep. I am looking forward to reading more from your blog!

    • muslimnlove says:

      Asaalamu Alaikum ConvertLearning,
      Thanks for stopping by MuslimnLove. I will most certainly be posting real life examples of my encounters during this marriage process. Like I had mentioned in by first post “So, it begins…” this blog is a branch off of my Facebook post where I discuss my “sit downs” with brothas. I will be giving tips, what I feel like is working for me and essentially just an insight into the life of a single Black Muslim woman. We’re gonna talk SistaQueen! 🙂

  6. ConvertLearning says:

    Ah! so many typos! I am on my cell phone and I hate typing on a touch screen! Please excuse all errors! I will proof read next time

  7. Sahar Musa says:

    Heyy Ihssan, me again lol. I came across your blog and read all your posts..I got hooked. I wanted to comment on so many, but I don’t know if there’s an unspoken internet limit lool. I could relate to a lot, for example about black people getting the short end of the stick and the brothers who seek chastity but they themselves are not chaste. It’s so interesting because I’m from the UK so the geographic upbringing is different, but the experiences in meetings with brothers is similar. May Allah grant me, you and everyone a righteous spouse that He is pleased with and we will be pleased with.

    By the way, I follow the salafi manhaj, I’m not sure what your experiences with salafis are, if it has been contrary to good I’m genuinely sorry for that. I’m not sure what your knowledge on salafiyyah is, I encourage you to read about the manhaj from the scholars so you can see the goodness it calls towards, such as tawheed, unity, following authentic sunnah, purification of the heart and many other goodness.

    Just for advise with what you’ve said ‘don’t mention it to your bearded gang or niqabi clad sisters. They might ask for a daleel or something.’ Be careful Ihssan, because the prophet (peace be upon him) and sahaba’s grew beards and the mother of believers wore niqaabs; and they held the utmost importance with verifying by evidence. I’m advising from one sister to another that as Muslims we are encouraged to say only what is good. Forgive me sister, if my delivery has not been good…I’m a work in progress. May you prosper and may Allah bless you.

    Here is what scholars have said in regards to what I mentioned about the attire… for your perusal http://blog.albaseerah.com/2010/01/mocking-hijab.html

    That probably wasn’t your intention to mock, nevertheless a reminder to myself first and then to you. x

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