Friday, February 17, 2012

Patience running thin

I wish that I was a bit more patient with other Muslims! But it's so hard to be, hahah. I'm a really private person with people that I don't know and I am getting to the point where I am sick of the questions that pretty much all Muslims ask when they realise I'm a revert.
I went to a takeaway Indian place a few weeks ago and the conversation went like this:

Her: "Are you from Saudi Arabia?"
Me: (I do NOT look Saudi, AT ALL. At a stretch, Lebanese or Turkish but NOT khaleeji) "No"
.... Silence .... 
Her: "Where are you from?"
Me: "I'm from here"
Her: "Oh wow. But where are your parents from?"
Me: "They're from here."
Her: "Are you Muslim?"
..... I wear hijab btw
Me: "Yes....."
Her: "Oh I'm a Muslim too."
Me: "Cool"
Her: "How did you become a Muslim?"
Me: "I researched it."

Her: "Oh, like you read the Qur'an?"
Me: "Yes?"
Her: "What do you feel is different between your life before and your life now?"

...At this point I was getting really upset because it's not like I'd come up to some random and ask where their parents are from and their inner most thoughts about their current life! She must have felt that I was rude because I didn't want to talk about my own personal feelings but I mean seriously. I find it so insulting that many people seem to think they have the right to question other people about really personal things, but they'd never do it to someone who wasn't a revert. And conversations like those above don't just happen with women, most of the time it's men who ask me questions like that which really annoys me because there is NO way I am going to describe my personal, religious journey with a man. Uh, no.
I do get that it's great to find other Muslims, believe me - it's only recently that more Muslims have moved here so it was good in the past to see them, but there is a line. Maybe my line is a bit too big because I'm a private person but there is a definitely a time and a place for asking those questions! I would share that information with a friend or perhaps someone in the mosque, not just someone that I bought some takeaway from and will never see again >.<


HijabRockers said...

Assalamu'alaikum sister.

=) I think that some of them are just happy and excited to meet a Muslim revert. So they just wanna hear ur story about how u became Muslim (especially if u're the only Muslim in ur family) and of course, people just LOVE adventure stories =).
My suggestion is, u prepare a well-rehearsed short story about how u became Muslim and what's the difference and fire away when they ask =). Just short one that u don;t mind sharing.
And u don't have to talk to the guys. Just apologize nicely after answering 1-2 questions and then tell them ur husband doesn't like it that much if u talk to other guys. They'll understand.

ellen557 said...

Wa alaykum salaam sis! I like that suggestion - it's so hard because I'm probably too private but inshaAllah I can think of something lol!
Unfortunately I don't think that the men suggestion would work... only because I have tried something similar and they started asking all of the same questions about him >.< lol!

New Wife said...

I think i have had this question like a million times verbatum... and not just muslims too, even non-muslims.

as for men, i never had a problem with that before, they don't really talk to me. i think it's because i'm quite terse with them lol. i like speak in monosyllables, bare minimum.

Zahra said...

haha. I sort of know the feeling. I'm no revert but I wasn't shia before and now i am, alhamd. And when people come to know that i accepted Shi'ism, i'm posed with almost the same questions you are.
I don't answer their questions too well either. I have the right to privacy and there is nothing wrong with that!

Nour نور said...

I can relate to this so much ... I'm a revert myself and I have always been amazed at the sameness of questions people asked me when they realized I was a revert, both in my home country ( France ) and in Jordan where I lived one year. A man actualy went so far, 5 seconds after I met him (he was a taxi driver) as to ask me "are you a virgin or did you have boyfriends before you converted ?" ... I was dumbstruck !

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