I would like to discuss the gender differences that are common nowadays in many Arabic families, where their religion is Muslim. Men are considered to be superior to women. A woman’s job is to be locked inside the house, raise the kids and do the housework. I have experienced this by seeing many families in Azerbaijan that are the same as the Arabic families, and I have known many women that have lived in these conditions. I will write a weekly diary explaining an Arabic woman’s life, including all her feelings about the way she lives.
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Since the women mainly stay at home, they don’t have close friends to talk to and don’t have anyone that is always there for them. I decided to have a woman explain her feelings to a diary. I want to show that this is true not only for Muslim families who live in Muslim countries but also for Muslim families in non-Muslim countries. The woman’s name will be Nura. She was married at the age of 18 and is now 30. She is very well educated; she went to a school and a good university and always studied hard because she wanted a bright future.
She speaks Arabic and English fluently and lives in the United Kingdom with her husband and two children. A boy who is 12 years old and a girl of 7 years old. Her children go to an international school and also have a very good education. Her husband works in a prestigious bank, but she has to stay home and follow the rules of her religion. I thought a diary would be an excellent way to show the life of an Arabic woman and to show her feelings. Word Count: 294 September 5th 2011 Dear Diary, I don’t even know where to begin. I am so tired of sitting at home all the time!
I want to have a regular life like every other woman here in London does. I want to be able to go out and have freedom. I don’t understand why I have to stay home. I am trustworthy and even by going out for a couple hours I would manage to finish all the housework and take care of the kids. Sometimes, I get so drained of feeling like a napkin that I want to stand up and tell my husband everything that I think of what he is doing to me, but I know that that will make everything worse. I have the same education as my husband does and I should have the same rights as well.
What I wish for right now is for my daughter Aisha to be an independent woman with her own life, her own job, and for her to have freedom. I don’t want her to have the same life as I have. I certainly don’t want her follow all her husband’s demands. I don’t want my daughter to be forced to marry any man, like I was. I want her to fall in love and decide for herself when she wants to get married and have children. I hope while we are living in London, my husband will become more modern and he will be less strict with our daughter. If I don’t become an independent woman, I will make sure that she will be.
September 12th 2011 Dear Diary, Today I found a book in my son’s room, the name of the book was Their Eyes Were Watching God, and since I can’t go out of the house, I decided to read the book. The book reminded me a lot of my own life, since the main character has a husband that thinks he is superior to her as well. She is not allowed to speak up to him and must do everything that he tells her to do, just like me! In a way it made me feel better knowing that this doesn’t happen only in my country and there are probably other families around the world just like mine. But this book was written more than 60 years ago!
I wish this would change though but I’m afraid that in my country everything will stay the same. I would like for my daughter to grow up with a completely different mentality and want to explain to her when she grows up that it doesn’t have to be this way. September 19th 2011 Dear Diary, Today I was so tired of sitting at home that I decided to go out, I feel extremely guilty for not telling my husband but I can’t take it anymore, and I deserve to see the real world. I wore my burqua and covered my face so nobody would notice me, and I just went out to the park for an hour.
It was the best feeling ever! I felt free and it made me realize how many opportunities life can give you and I would love to go and explore the whole world. September 26th 2011 Dear Diary, Today I had an argument with my husband. I was cooking dinner and everything was supposed to be ready in time for my husband to arrive but today by husband arrived ten minutes earlier than he usually does, and the table wasn’t ready. He got extremely mad at me and yelled at me in front of our children. He said that I can’t even do the housework so it’s a good thing that I remain locked inside the house.
This made me so mad that I wanted to yell back at him because he doesn’t know how hard it is to look after two children, do the housework and stay home all day, I didn’t say anything because I didn’t want our children to see us fight, but I am so tired of this, I can’t take it anymore! I want to be treated like a person and not like an animal! October 3rd 2011 Dear diary, Today my husband forgot to take his cell phone to work and while I was sitting at home, it rang. He had gotten a new message. The message was from another woman! He is cheating on me while he makes me sit at home all the time.
Everything I do for him is not enough! Seeing this message killed me and I don’t want to be hurt like this. I don’t know what to do now, because I know if I say anything about it to him, he will make me deal with it no matter what and he will hurt me even more. I just want to run away from him. I would if I didn’t have two children that I love and can’t live without and I want them to grow up with a father, but this is too hard for me. October 10th, 2011 Dear Diary, This has been one of the hardest weeks of my life, I never felt this stupid. I feel like I was betrayed.