If you ask me there are some things better left unsaid.
Over the years, I have had several of my friends in predicaments where they were talking to potential brothas for marriage. Things were going smoothly, actually things were going pretty good. The brotha was practicing Islam, had a decent job, came from a great family and was helllaaa tall. A perfect match. What else could you ask for?
Then he pops THE question…
No, not THAT question. Don’t get excited…
The one question that changes the entire vibe of this new and blossoming relationship.
“Have you been with a non-Muslim?” aka “Has anyone popped that cherry?“ aka “Are you still a virgin?”
Now keep in mind, in most of these situations folks are well over 30. Grown as hell and have been in a relationship of some sort. I don’t sugar coat Islam or Muslims and yes you can still be Muslim and engaging in pre-marital sex. We all sin in different ways and this doesn’t make anyone more or less of a Muslim than the next.
There is no “Muslim-Richter” Scale in Islam.
You’ve repented and asked Allah for forgiveness but some people are not as forgiving…
Back to my main point…
Now, if you’ve been good and haven’t fallen victim to your desires I give you props, but what if you have? What if you messed up and are now back on track?
What’s next? The situation can look pretty bleak, especially if you’re a woman…
Now what is one supposed to do when the question of premarital sex is brought up. Really, let’s think critically here. I’ve witnessed these three responses:
1. You can be totally honest. This is marriage we’re talking about so you should be an open book, right? The question seems pretty invasive but you don’t want to start the relationship off on a lie. This is totally understandable but there are certain things to consider. First off, don’t assume he’ll appreciate your honesty. Hopefully he/she will, lets be optimistic, but you may become a victim to your own truthfulness. In utopia, we would all have the freedom to be ourselves but we live in a world of judgment and shame. Feel out your situation, assess what type of person he/she is.
2. Throw the question right back. The chances of him being virginal are very slim. Believe me. Now if he is expecting you to be virginal and he isn’t I would drop dude like a hot potato because you better believe he has some other twisted ideas about women. The last thing you need is to get that from your husband. It’s unfair but its reality. Now if both of you guys are on the same page and have been in relationships move the &^$# on! More serious things to worry about in a relationship. Allah gives chances so give your relationship a fair shot without focusing on the past.
3. You can totally lie. To be honest I have seen this play out the most. I’ve known many women who lie right through her teeth. It’s rather unfortunate because women are sexually shamed and as a result are almost cornered into being dishonest. This could bite you in the butt at the end of the day though and lies are always difficult to maintain. If you have to start the relationship off on a lie you really need to consider if this is the right person for you. Lying in life leads to nowhere.
Now all three of these potential scenarios could be avoided if folks just didn’t dig into the past. It’s so unimportant in the scheme of things. Later in this post I am going to suggest limiting ourselves to two important questions.
Truth of the matter is I don’t expect Muslim men to be virgins, because well most of them just aren’t! If a brother who has been unmarried is a virgin I am often surprised. It doesn’t even cross my mind to ask because I really, really don’t care. People are people and they mess up, people sin and everyone is just trying to make it.
But in the midst of this Muslim men continue asking women these questions.
Women, whether Muslim or not, will forever be judged on their sexual history. Men are given a free ticket to be the sexual creatures Allah intended them to be. Many Muslims men will justify the Islamic practice of polygyny with the need to have more sex. Even in the West you’ll hear common sayings like “Men will be men…” The universal pass to do whatever the hell a dude wants without question.
Some Muslim men get offended and in their feelings when you ask how much money they have in their savings account yet its acceptable, and often encouraged, to ask who has been in my vagina? Since when did something so personal, such as my sexual past, become grounds for public conversation? Who made this the deciding factor whether or not I am “good” enough to be your wife? As though, this isn’t one of the most personal and invasive questions to ask a grown woman before you decide to marry her.
I suppose concealing ones sins doesn’t apply when it comes to marriage…
Every Muslim woman has the right to be utterly offended when this question is posed. Now, if this one of the first questions asked and I barely know you I’d be totally pissed. As though there is not more to me than who I have had sex with. Muslim men are out in the dunya, sometimes they’ll even father a couple children. At a certain point they decide they are over that life and become practicing Muslims. Muslim women accept them, and their children, with open arms. The mosque accepts them with open arms. They bring their kids in the mosque and nothing is said. Muslim women end up marrying them and at times even helping them raise their children.
This is how it should be, we should be forgiving of each other, but Muslim women are exempt from this forgiving.
Let a woman fall in love and end up in the bed of ONE man and she will be publicly crucified. I have a friend who converted to Islam and a brother asked her about her sexual past. Even as a woman who was once married, some Muslim men still have the nerve ask me if I have been with anyone sexually since that time. In some instances, even bringing up past marriages brings to surface negative feelings within people.
I don’t see the point of going into depth when it comes to these issues. I’ve NEVER seen it turn out good. It only harbors feelings of mistrust and self-worth. Folks might ask themselves the question will I be as “good” as their last partner?
Ask yourself, what is truly the point? Why do you want to know? Is it your ego?
Now, what if we limited our questions to this:
- When was the last time you were tested for STD’s/STI’s and would you be open to testing?
- Are you currently involved with anyone?
This is all you need to know. Leave the past where it belongs, in the past.
If a person wants to bring up their sexual history on their own accord that’s perfectly fine as well but don’t go digging around. Nothing good comes from this, I am telling you. Assume everyone over 30 is not a virgin, as most (not all) people have been in some sort of relationship once they reach this age be that marriage or another situation.
We should be perfectly fine with this.
Weren’t most of the women that the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon them) married in relationships prior to him? Yes, those relationships were marriages but my point being is that they all weren’t virgins and he was perfectly fine with that.
You are a fool if you don’t see divine wisdom behind that. Why not practice THIS sunnah of the Prophet?
Remember, ass is easy to get but a serious, committed and practicing Muslim partner is not. Don’t get distracted my focusing on things that don’t deserve your attention.
People mess up.
We’re all trying.
Allah is the Most forgiving.
Be easy on each other.