My father has raised me to be a strong, and independent woman. He always expected me to do things on my own, and not really be dependent on anyone. He’d help me out when I asked, but at the same time, he’d teach me how to do it on my own. It’s the reason why, when I have to move heavy objects, I don’t think twice about doing it on my own. The only time I ask for help, is if I really can’t lift it on my own. I mean, for the longest time, my dad would ask me to help him lift heavy things because my brother was not old enough. My dad will still ask me to help lift things when my brother isn’t home.
It’s for this reason, I’m so happy when I see strong female role models in the Muslim community. I wouldn’t consider myself a feminist, but I do believe that we woman are capable of doing a lot, though many times we hold back because of what society dictates. I know there are many times when things go wrong in my life, my mother’s response has been, “Well why don’t you just get married” instead of encouraging me to try harder, or pick myself back up. Now I’m not saying that being married is not a good thing, I’m just saying that why does the desi community believe that being married is really the only option for a woman, if things don’t work out? We should strive to teach our girls to do great things! To become politicians, artists, doctors, lawyers, engineers, scholars, or whatever! We shouldn’t assume that a girl should just get married if she encounters a problem.
Anyway, this was not a rant about marriage. I’m just ranting about the lack of acknowledgement of strong Muslim woman in our community. I know so many strong Muslim woman who have done so much! However, no one seems to be talking about them. I can name quite a few accomplished woman (mashallah) who I am proud to call my friends. I really do try my best to tell the girls about them and what they’ve done. That way, they can dream big, and try to move away from what society might have pigeon holed for them.
Islam promotes strong woman; there are examples in the Qur’an. It’s time we remember that, and encourage our girls to look up to these woman.
Oh wow, I went all over the place! I think I’m going to stop ranting. Maybe I’ll do some research, get some references and then write something more substantial. So that’s all for now!