marriage

Threes Company

I must seem like good wife material to these brothas…

Second wife material that is.

Let me break it down for those of you who don’t quite understand.

In Islam, a man is allowed to have more than one wife. He can have up to four if he so chooses. Now there are rules when it comes to this practice. He must be financially stable and just to all of his wives. This is not like a harem thing where the brotha gets fed grapes under a palm tree on some tropical island. It ain’t that kind of party…

Since I have embarked on this search I have had several brothas ask me if I was interested in joining their families. Most of these men are fairly young, successful and seem to have pretty good marriages. Interestingly enough, their wives are perfectly fine with entering plural marriage.

I must admit. It weirds me out…

One sister actually asked on her husbands behalf.

First off, I don’t like to share and if I don’t want to share my husband that is my right. If Allah blesses me with a husband I would want him for myself. I’m 100% woman. If he has me then he doesn’t need anyone else.

Sistaqueens, know your value…

If you choose to take part in polygyny because you desire to practice it then gon’ ahead!

Also, if you decide to practice polygyny due to desperation and frustration I suggest you to do a self evaluation.

Thing is these married brothas are so persistent.

Common one liners I’ve heard:

“Sista, the Prophet and his wives did it. You think you’re better than them?”

Exactly! The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) was just that…the Prophet! So rather than trying to emulate this practice to your advantage why not try something else? Let’s see…perhaps night prayers, feeding the poor, or having more patience. If you desire to be so much like our Beloved there are an array of good acts to choose from. I can provide you with a list.

“It’s too much temptation these days.Would you rather have a brotha cheat on his wife?”

My thirsty brotha, please have a seat somewhere. Ain’t nobody got time for you to be talking this mess right now. If you are already married and concerned about infidelity then you need to examine your current relationship. Is there something lacking in your marriage? Do you have an insatiable appetite? If you answered yes to either of those then polygyny is not going to solve your problem.

I wish my future husband would.

I’d knock that fool out…

“There are a lot of Muslim women who need help. Don’t you want for your sister what you want for yourself?”

Yes, sure there are many women in need… but hot dayum do you have to marry the sista to help her out?

Pass.

Don’t religiously guilt a sista into polygyny. This practice is an option. It doesn’t make you any less of a Muslim if you choose not to practice this.

I can not stand Muslims who exploit the religion to their advantage. Most would think that brothas take advantage of polygyny.

But guess what though?

Many sistas do too…

This is a recent finding of mine. I have had several friends enter polygyny due to the simple fact that they don’t want a husband “full time”. They would prefer to share their man with another woman. For these women it means less cooking, less cleaning and all your needs are taken care of.

Now, for some couples polygyny works perfectly fine. From what I have seen it takes certain personality types, a lot of patience and sacrifice. It can actually be successful if all those involved get along.

Do what makes you happy and always remember Allah.

You’ll never lose with that.

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divorce, personal, tips

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June is a very special month for me…

My birth month…

Juneteenth. The month slavery was abolished.

My divorce…

June is a time filled with emotions and self-reflection. I celebrate the new year of life that Allah has blessed me with. I celebrate an end of my tumultuous marriage. I celebrate when my people were freed from the physical chains of slavery. Most importantly though, I celebrate the strong Black Muslim woman that I have become.

Don’t be mistaken though. I didn’t always have this mindset.

June used to be a hard time for me.

Actually, real hard…

Divorce is devastating. It is disappointing. You have so many hopes and dreams when you decide to merge paths with someone. After getting divorced you have to reroute your journey. I had to find myself again. It took time to get over my “X” and it took time to find ME again.

I write this for you.

The divorced person who has had a hard time getting over the hurdle of unfulfilled promises and a broken heart.

I write this for you.

The person who loves deep and with all their might.

I will share what has worked for me in the hopes that it will shed some light on this dark path of disappointment.

1. Time. Give yourself the time and space that you need. This is all dependent on the individual. We all heal at different paces. Some of us need a couple of months while others may need years. Do not allow anyone else to dictate your “time” of healing. It took me a year and a half to get over my divorce.

2. Cry. Allow yourself the time to express your emotions. My Brothas, you need to cry as well… Don’t be shy. Don’t hold back. Get it out. Better to get it out now rather than later. There is a spiritual cleansing involved in getting rid of this energy. I never cried after my divorce. Then…it happened…One day I checked the mail, after being divorced for over a year, and I recognized the handwriting on the envelope. It looked familiar, like the chicken scratch I had seen when I was married. It was my ex-husbands handwriting. I knew what it was but I didn’t want to confront reality. I walked up the stairs with groceries in hand while clutching the envelope. I plopped on my bed and tore the envelope open. I cried. I probably wept more than I cried. It was the “official” divorce papers. I allowed myself this time and promised that I would NEVER cry like that again. Be firm but merciful to yourself. That was the only time I cried.

3. Fall in love with “YOU”. Find that person you lost throughout your marriage. You sacrificed a lot. You loved hard. You feel like you were not appreciated. Find that person again. You know, the one who loved life and was trusting of others. Sacrifice is a normal part of a healthy relationship. When it is one-sided that’s when it becomes unhealthy. Pick up a hobby. Eat ice cream out the carton. Walk around the house in your ugly pajamas (or no pajamas if that’s your thing!) Enjoy yourself. You deserve it.

4. Forgive yourself…and your “X”. I always say it takes two people to end a marriage. Remember this please. We all make mistakes. I constantly pray to Allah that I NEVER make a mistake that I can not fix. Learn from this experience. Grow. Soar to new heights. After you forgive yourself then move onto forgiving your “X”. It will take time. I was very hurt after my divorce. I felt betrayed. I was not valued. I was not loved. I had to realize this was not solely my fault. I blamed myself for many of his flaws. Don’t give your “X” the power to control your emotions. You are bigger than that.

5. Trash it. Get rid of the pictures. Forget the memories. You need a fresh start. Whatever it takes for you to “move on” then do that. Time is extremely precious. We ain’t got time to waste! After my divorce I did an Angela Bassett move from “Waiting to Exhale”. I chopped all my hair off. Yes, sir! Now you know I had to be pretty serious to do that. Black girls barely get trims but that is what I needed to renew myself and it played a big part in my healing process. As long as you don’t do this you should be good!

I am grateful.

Today is my born day.

I am humble.

Today brings new hopes and a fresh start.

I’ve been handed another year of life and a second chance at love…All praises to the One.

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brothers, marriage

Broke Brothas

Money…

It’s important to most women. A majority of us need to feel like we are going to be financially secure within a relationship. The idea of venturing into a marriage with a brotha who is not financially stable is scary for the most part.

Now, I have realized a couple things. Sistas, take notes because this might change how you view brothas who you deem “broke”.

Let me break it down for you. I put “broke brothas” into three categories:

Broke dreamers. These brothas are really hopeful and bright eyed. They are hard workers and always on the grind. You will find them doing random jobs or working on some “big idea”. They have goals and aspirations but can’t seem to get it movin’. He would give you the world if he could. One thing to remember is that you will always have to have a steady job if you decide to stick it out with one of these brothas. Most of them are sincere, honest and trying their best. They just can’t focus and get to where they want to be. You just need to realize and expect tough times. Sometimes they just need a sista who can give them direction. If you are up for the challenge there are many of them lurking around. I advise you to determine what he wants out of life before starting a relationship.

Broke smarties. These brothas are the ones who are in school. I’m talking about the future engineers, doctors and intellectuals. These brothas have A LOT of potential. Most of them are turned off by the idea of marriage because they know they aren’t stable enough to support a wife and potential family. Also, they have been rejected by many sistas because they ain’t got no money. Most want to be married but remain single due to the financial constraint. His money is going elsewhere right now. College tuition, textbooks and ramen noodles are just to name a few. He’s broke as a joke. He wants to be married. He’s just waiting for that one sista who will see past his bank account. They are lurking all over campuses and MSA’s (Muslim Student Assocation). You might even find one in your local library gettin’ his study on. If you have the ability to be patient with a brotha you might be able to benefit from him later on. Remember what I said earlier. Don’t block love. Also, best believe once he graduates those sista will be on him!

Broke jokers. Now these brothas right here… They have been broke a long time. VERY LONG… What makes this bad is that he is perfectly comfortable being broke. They are always scheming and trying to come up with a cheap way to make money. These are the brothas who might take you out and if you pay for dinner they wouldn’t budge. They pretend like they have more money than they actually do. More than likely they will have the latest kicks on and their rims will be shining. They are show offs. Flaunting around the little money they got. Sistaqueen, it’s all a facade. ALL OF IT. It’s easy to get stuff on credit. Remember that.

This gives you something to think about. Look at each case individually. Sistaqueens, also remember never be 100% financially dependent on a man. Even if you marry someone who is really banking remember that money can disappear just as quickly as it was made.

Make your own way.

Don’t follow his.

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marriage, personal, stories, Uncategorized

Hot Hijabis

He saw me from across the room. I pretended like I was distracted so he wouldn’t approach me. In my peripheral I could see him making his way through the crowd. I turned around trying to use one last-ditch effort. Perhaps he would not think its me is what I thought to myself…

Then I remembered I was the only one wearing a hijab. A bright fuchsia one at that.

I laughed under my breath.

My efforts didn’t work because I felt him coming up behind me. I turned back around.

“Heyyyyyy!” I said smiling and trying to look pleasantly surprised.

“I haven’t seen you in a long time. Where have you been?” He asked.

He smelled good and my mind was starting to wander.

I took a deep breath in and reminded myself to focus.

“I’m good. The usual, busy with work and stuff,” I responded.

He took a moment, looked down and studied his hands. Then looked back up at me.

“You know, I understand you got this religion thing going on. You should still let me take you out. Just a nice dinner or something…” He said.

This was going to be the second time I refused his offers.

I took a deep breath in.

He still smelled good…

____________________________

Many non-Muslim men have a fascination with Muslim women, especially those of us that cover. Living in a culture where it is culturally acceptable for women to walk around scantily dressed it is strange for some to see women who independently choose to dress modestly.

Folks fail to realize that you can be pretty hot in a hijab (a term used to describe the dress code for Muslim women. This includes the headscarf).

I meet an array of people working in a busy emergency room. Many times my patients have asked about the significance of my hijab. Interestingly enough, most of the questioning is done by men. One man told me that he was drawn to the idea of a woman covering and only showing herself to people who would honor and respect her.

I can dig that.

I’ve had many non-Muslim men approach me and many of them step up correct. Remember, men are hesitant when approaching women to begin with. If you have a hijab on most men are going to be extra cautious because they are unsure what is culturally acceptable. They might compliment your hijab or spark up a small conversation in order to get to know you. Sadly, many of them have been far more respectful towards me than my Muslim brothas.

In my situation (and many other SistaQueens I know) hijab has not been a deterrent for men. If anything it attracts men who have a spiritual and conscious mindset towards you. Now if you are talking about the Black community hijab does not deter men at all! Head covering has always been a distinct part of our culture.

So, would I ever consider marrying a non-Muslim man?

Never.

I’d rather stay single my entire life. May Allah forbid.

Have I thought about accepting one of their offers?

Certainly.

But…

You see, with this whole marriage process you have to think long-term. I’m talking marriage here. The rest of my life. My companion. My lover. My baby daddy. Now, I need you to be gettin’ your prayer in! I need you to fast with me during Ramadan. I need to be able to discuss Islam with you. I need you to push me when my iman (faith) ain’t where it is supposed to be. If you’re not Muslim how can I expect that from you?

Once you realize this it is easy to make a decision and narrow your focus. This life is full of temptation. Do not fall victim to your desires.

Now a SistaQueen ain’t judging. If you have taken the risk of marrying a non-Muslim man I know you understand the consequences that accompany that. (SN: For those of you who think this doesn’t exist then wake up and smell the humus!) You’ve probably lost friends and your community. It’s hard to find a place where you feel welcomed. Always remember Islam and Allah. Do not let the reaction of people deter you from Islam.

Again, I remind you the key is to think long-term when it comes to relationships and marriage. Short term gratification is easy to find.

You are a SistaQueen. Know your value.

Wear that crown proudly…

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