brown girl problems

Brown Girl Struggles

-Getting busted with Tariq at the bus stop by some cowbag Khala. Her giving you deluded “I see you” smiles. Whilst Tariq mentally rues the day he offered to walk your Asian ass to the bus stop.

-Making up an excuse for whenever there is a work outing to the pub; “we have guests coming over/ we’re going to London that day.” Read: My Ma will murder me for stepping into the pub Khudda ke liye stop inviting me you politically correct assholes.

-Your dad sitting you down to question you on why you haven’t been praying the last few days and how we shouldn’t stop praying even if we get depressed and life gets hard. Like fam, did they teach biology at your school because this convo’s about to get bloody awkward. Mind the pun.

-Coming to the sad realisation that if he doesn’t respond to, “haal kaisa hai janaab ka?” with, “kiya khayaal hai aapka?” he is too young for your spinster ass.

-When you decide to challenge Shoaib to a healthy debate by asking him, “how would you feel if someone spoke to your sister the way you speak to me?” But it backfires on your holy ass and he stops flirting with you.

-When you clock Mustafa with his latest conquest and her hair game is hella weak compared to yours but thanks to the hijab he will never know.

-When he’s disappointed that you can’t cook given that you’re Asian. Aye, DJ Imran, I was disappointed you ain’t a heart surgeon, but what you gonna do? Life eh?

-Being forbidden to talk to boys ALL your life. Then getting berated for not maintaining Waseem’s interest when he came to propose to your socially akward ass.

-When your curfew game hella weak compared to your brother’s. Fatima, your brother is home and you are not. What will the neighbours say? Get home now!

-When your hijab rises slightly and Arshad’s pervy eyes clock your hairy back of the neck situation and raises his concerns. I mean… it keeps me warm in winter. What’s your beardless face saying when it’s cold though? Yeah, that’s what I thought. Keep walking Arshad.

-When you lack of skill in cooking, dancing, make up, fashion, tolerating spicy food are all met with; “wait, aren’t you Asian though?”

The problem with arranged marriages

​Having dedicated my blog to writing for three whole years, I figured this was the year to focus on photography given that it is my other major interest. Alas… something ticked me off this evening that I now feel I must write slash vent about, so;

Where my fellow brownies at? Gather round. Ya’ll will know what I’m saying.

At 29, the one question I always get is; when are you going to get married?Actually people seem to have accepted my spinsterhood now and they do not even ask me this anymore. I don’t know whether this should make me feel relieved or depressed. It sucks that that’s all anyone can think about, but we all know that that is how things roll in the Asian slash Arab culture. I belong to both so double whammy.

My answer to people that ask me that is that I just haven’t met anyone yet. Then they say; why not try arranged marriages, stop being too romantic, don’t wait for the one he will never come.

Yes, being female does carry the unfortunate expectation with it that one day some dbag will find his way to you and think you aight enough to spend the rest of his life with. Maybe he hasn’t shown up yet because I keep referring to him as dbag but you know…

I digress. The reason I prefer the idea of meeting someone solo and not as an arrangement set up by a third party has little to do with romance. Rather it is because that way, people know what to expect. They take you with your flaws knowingly because they have seen something in you. They know what they are signing up for.

With a set up, ya’ll swap info and you get rejected based on what fits their bill. If I send a guy a photo of me and he says no to marriage straight after, it’s very likely that it’s because he saw something in the photo that he didn’t like and vice versa for girls. This doesn’t sit well with me for many reasons but it is what it is. I’m not going to sit here and argue that as humans we don’t have preferences when it comes to looks becuase well, we are only human.

Let’s take a step back though to the advertising process that happens before photos are exchanged. Arranged marriages happen when that dreaded aunty in your family knows someone that knows someone that knows someone who wants to get married and thinks you would be a good match so she gets the ball rolling on your behlaf.

Alternatively, because this is 2017, people now have whatsapp groups where people throw information about their son / daughter / nephew / cousin etc in the hopes that someone will spot this info and immediately think of a perfect match that they could reccomend. A halal dating service without the dating if you will.

My friend is in one of these groups and so I borrowed her phone for an hour to sift through thousands of messages from men listing their name, jobs, hobbies and preferences in a life partner. I started reading with amusement. This amusement though soon turned into other emotions that reminded why I’ve always subconciously rejected the idea of arranged marriages.

I noticed that the three major qualities that featured regularly in all life partner requests on the whatsapp group were for the girl to be; fair / light skinned, 5’4″ and above and slim to medium build. 

My friend and I laughed about how absurd and deluded some of these men and their mothers were. Later on my own mother asked me why I didn’t look for someone I liked from the list. I felt very strange when I told her, honestly, it was because no one on the list wanted someone like me.

I didn’t want to sound like a sob story to my mother. So I feel a disclaimer is in order; I don’t want anyone to console me by saying that I will find someone when the time is right and blah because it’s all good. Marriage has never appealed to me per se. Everyone I know tells me not to do it. I love travelling and married people don’t get to do that without kids and 2 extra lots of expenses. I live at home where I am free to do whatever I want (within reason!) My meals are always prepared for me because my mother says I can’t cook to save my life; hopefully no potentials are reading this ha! My dad likes to make me tea in my travel mug before I go to work. I am illustrating these facts to make it a point that I am not distressed about being single. I live a life most married people tell me they envy. Then I tell them to say mashallah because nazar.

But the fact of the matter was, most guys wanted tall, fair and slim girls. I am none of the three. It puts me right outside the loop of what is desired. That’s fine, to each his own. 

Fair enough. It’s not just these guys that are being unreasonable. I am very short and I want someone who is very tall so that’s me being unreasonable too. Aside from the fact that I find taller guys more attractive anyway (hello bias, nice to see you) I need to give my children a chance at life. I need them to at least be average height because let’s face it being short sucks. I got bullied for it a lot. Also, you can’t reach anything. Trust me. I even need a ladder to reach my dreams. It’s so inconvinient.

I cannot do much about being dark to be honest. Well I could with make up I suppose but why should I fam? If you want white go date rice. Stay away from me.

As for “what build are you?” Yeah I am not slim at all. I’m not even medium bruh. I should really do something about that one but for my bmi not your demanding ass dbag.

I guess what I am trying to say is I always get asked why I am too narrow minded when it comes to arrange marriage. And no, it is not becuase I am picky. It is because subconciously I know I don’t possess many of the physical qualities that the majority of guys (and their deluded mothers) are after. So, I am saving myself the rejection in advance. I don’t need that toxic energy in my life. I have plenty to keep me going.

So unless dbag wants to show up and take me willingly despite my many flaws, I am quite happy continuing to live in my folks’ house where frankly they always find things to keep me occupied anyway.

Finally, to sum up; thank you aunty, but arranged marriages, though work perfectly for many, they are just not for me.