No Wonder Women Are Bored!
By Hwaa Irfan
Year after year, hundreds of reports come pouring out of organizations like the U.N. without thorough research and provision of evidence, that all the women of developing countries are products of abuse, poverty, malnutrition, rape, and whatever plight that can be labeled to women of developing countries. None of these reports refer to the plight of women in the U.S. or any European country (excluding of course Eastern Europe) .Without reading all of these reports, one is left with the firm impression that “all” the women in developing countries, and Muslim women in particular have a very hard time when compared to the West. The West loves to paint itself as the bastion of women’s liberation and rights. I recall one day in the U.K., as I was on my way to work, after dropping my daughter off to school, passing by an abaya clad Iraqi mother, as she marched towards the same school from which I was leaving – this was of course before frenzy that ensued after 9/11 and the current trend of virtually stripping Muslim women of the right to wear decent, respectable clothing, I asked if she was alright as she seemed to look stressed out, and she replied:
“It’s too hard here. I have to do everything. Back home I had help – I had family, but here I only have myself – I want to go back home.”
I smiled, and I said yes, this is Britain!
So it does not surprise me to find a questionable report out recently declaring ⅔ of British women are bored — sorry “completely” bored!
This unnamed study was carried out based on 3000 women, so how representative it is of the female population is I would say is questionable. However let’s not quibble, mainly because it serves to prove my point! Elaine Smith, marketing manager for Florette Fruit, apparently said to the Daily Mail:
“Women today are so busy trying to have it all – the job, the family, the social life – that somehow we’ve ended up with nothing.
“It is no surprise two thirds of British women are bored with their lives and half are sick of doing the same thing day in and day out.
‘Women have lost the get-up-and-go to shake up their lives and try something different.”
But isn’t this the equality that the U.N. and its feminist camp have craved for! Is this not called “democracy?”
What woman would not want the right to constantly wash dirty dishes, do the laundry, vacuum the house (of course that’s a luxury in developing countries – the vacuum cleaner that is), dusting, cleaning, shopping, screaming at the children, taking the children to school, collecting the children from school, being without money because you’ve spent it all on the things that the media, the children, and your husband and relatives said you should have, and in the attempt to get out of the house, the job that you hate so you can pay for all the things that you would not have if you did not go out to work (taking into consideration that living in Britain is expensive anyway).
I don’t ever recall my life being that much of a nightmare in the U.K. in fact I made much time for leisure, friends, and community/religious activities, but at the end of the day, it is women who make those choices. Life does not have to be so miserable, but if we keep telling ourselves that we are super human, we might turn around like these women and one day find that we may indeed be super, but the human got lost on the route to social acceptability.
Run down, and, burnt out by the time one does go away on holiday (the study said that these women would like more holidays), one would be too tired to enjoy a holiday. In fact that time-out is more likely to serve the purpose of letting go of all the built up tension in some unpleasant manner.
In the back waters of an island where we lived for a short while, which by U.N. and feminist standards the women are in definite need of being liberated, when the men went away to work and the children at school, the homes were always open to neighbors, household chores were never done alone, neighbors participated in not only sharing their news, and their concerns, but participated in the household chores, and the cooking preparations as well. There was time to sleep, relax, enjoy the company neighbors, friends and family. If anyone one was in need you were there for them, and they were there for you. If you got bored with the four walls of your home, and the courtyard, there was the gardening. Then if one got bored with that, there was the visit. The visit would involve setting off in the early morning, to encounter an adventurous trip that may take up to over 3 hours, and the journey allowed for detours. One may have a shower on arrival, rest, eat without cooking, relax and spend a pleasant time with other women. Maybe gifts would be exchanged which could varying from food to a new djalabia/hijab, and one left refreshed to return to a family who left to fend for themselves with the neighbors and older relatives in supervision. The time out was when you needed it!
The many references made by western media of Muslim women being chained to the home, under the thumbs of the men, as sex slaves or baby factories has more in common with modernity than it has with the lives of Muslims in the past. Not even Fatima, daughter of Prophet Muhammed just stayed at home. Fatima was active in the community, visiting the poor, and helping where needed.
Khadija was a business woman before she met Prophet Muhammed, and as his wife she supported and encouraged him in business, and in finding his mission with Allah (SWT). She was the first convert to Islam.
Nasibah bint Ka’b al-Maziniyyah protected the life of Prophet Muhammed (SAW) when he was in danger.
Umm Salamah was active in the community, and was a confidante of Propeht Muhammed (SAW) in affairs of the ‘Ummah.
Asmaa Bint Abu Bakr was an extremely generous person. Her son Abdullah once said of her, “I have not seen two women more generous than my aunt A’ishah and my mother Asmaa. But their generosity was expressed in different ways. My aunt would accumulate one thing after another until she had gathered what she felt was sufficient and then distributed it all to those in need. My mother, on the other hand, would not keep anything even for the morrow.”
Ash Shifa bint Abdullah was a woman of medicine, a public administration, and was appointed as the wali of administration of the marketplace.
Al Udar al-Karimah Shihaab ad-Deen Salah would secretly visit the poor, seeking to learn their needs and give help. She built great schools and mosques in Zabid, and Ta’izz.
Banafshaa’ ar-Rumiyah founded a school of endowment, and renovated the city of Baghdad.
Zubaidah bt Ja’far b al-Mansur was patron of Muslim and Christian writers and physicians.
A’isha bint Sa’d bint ibn Abi Waqqas was well versed in the Islamic sciences, and had famous pupils like the scholar Imam Malik.
None of the above women would have had such an interesting life by simply cooking, cleaning, dusting, and doing a job which they hated. What they did, they did out of love. Yet the unfortunate women in the study who are bored with their lives could only think of:
1. Go to an airport and get the next available flight to anywhere
3. Tell people what they really think
4. Hand in their notice without another job to go to
5. Have a dramatic hair cut
6. Put the house up for sale and buy a new one
7. Try something new in the bedroom
8. Go back to school
9. Book in for a boob job
10. Sing in public
• Go to an airport and get the next available flight to anywhere
• Hand in their notice without another job to go to
• Go back to school
Might be the only choices made that could lead to a more eventful life!
Daily Mail Reporter. Two-Thirds of British Women ‘Completely Bored with Their Lives’
Sahaba.net. Sisters “Stories of the Companions”
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The House of Three Rooms
Developing the Muslim Self Through Martial Arts
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Taking Control of Your Family Home