The Open Minded Saudi Guy

My partner refuses to marry someone as wealthy, let alone less fortunate. I on the other hand don’t really care as long as he is educated, comes from a family that belongs to a tribe I am allowed to marry into and is open minded enough to understand where I am coming from. His financial situation doesn’t really matter to me. I might sound a bit cliché. Furthermore, my definition for open minded is not the sad Saudi guy that is very far from religion and culture, who tries to show everyone and flaunt his hate towards the country and religious restrictions we have. Yes, we all get a little frustrated with some of these aspects but if one is asked by a stranger we should be intellectual enough to explain it from all points of view, not just say that we are sick of them blah blah blah. By stranger I mean to the religion and/or country.

I do not wear Hijab. However, if asked by a non Muslim why do Muslims wear it? I can be very articulate. I tell them why, followed by saying it is not a bad thing but I personally don’t wear it. Then the all timer comes: why don’t you? Aren’t you a Muslim. I am but this is a little thing that by god’s willing I might do one day. I have more important red lines in my personal life that obey with my religion and culture more crucial than wearing hijab. Hijab has never by itself kept bad girls and women from doing very shameful things.

Some of my red lines got me to break up with a guy or two because they couldn’t tell the difference between not wearing hijab and not behaving as a traditional Saudi girl. The last guy I got to speak with over the phone was filthy rich and very good in manging his money, a bit stingy I might say. I discovered this and immediately told my mom about it. She said well you are a big spender maybe he is not your best fit. His sister is a very good friend of my mom. I spoke to my partner about him and she said as long as he is well off don’t even think twice. He started talking about clubs and hookers and lots of things I never really experienced.

Clubbing is not really my scene. If it was guaranteed.. that no fight would break in the club and shooting would not happen, then yes… I might. Till that is guaranteed, I will not be going. I simply don’t want my family regretting the trust they put in me by letting me pursue my dreams. People saying “Purple Al-Velvet is apparently here to go clubbing not for school” is not something I look forward to. I will not shame my parents by having a bad reputation, wither it is being always in clubs or aside from it.

This guy let’s call him M.H. was absolutely ridiculous! I was willing to let his talk about splitting the rent yada yada yada slide by. He was against everything that related to Saudi or Islam. Yes, there might be things that I don’t like about my country and there are things in the religion I can’t imagine my self doing anytime soon. But come on, that was just way too much. Living in Saudi is stable, it is family. We all put on a mask especially in the liberated Najdy society where we don’t flaunt our non traditional daily life and keep it from the forbidding eye. Close relative or one’s drinking habits, having mixed gatherings with Western friends etc. etc.. are examples of what only might be exposed in a very tight circle. He was so enthused to tell me that he was in the stock exchange room in a bank in Riyadh holding a beer in hand in front of everybody without even caring. He was shallow enough to think by saying that he will impress me and fit in my world. I think one should respect the country’s law. Drinking in the privacy of your own home on the other hand is your own business just like it was no one’s business how you got it in the first place. I told him it is dangerous to drive when drunk and if it was just for the thrill of it, then you are a kid. If you had to take a drink to relax your self at least have the courtesy of pouring it into a Pepsi can or something or you’re better off drinking before you leave your house. He asked me why I was studying in the states again..I should be studying in Manfohha. I get a lot of these confused people that I interact with day to day. I came to a conclusion that he was a wanna be open minded guy and not well traveled. I dropped him like a hot potato. I got scowled upon from both my partner and my mother but it is my decision to make. Mine alone. Travailing is not the only way, mixing with different people and educating one’s self through the Internet and the media by exposing your self to different things outside the middle east.

Another strange story happened with a girl I came across sometime last year, she insisted her uncle was the perfect guy for me, westernized but still maintains some of the Saudi traditions. From her (5a9′ery) family name I knew it would be impossible to marry him, then I asked what her mom’s family’s name was? Sure enough, not happening. My dear friend from Jeddah asked me do you really believe in this bullshit? I said I actually do. Even if I didn’t, I would have to obey for the sake of my dad and brothers. I think it is the mixed signals people get from me, I shock them when it comes to the gems of our Saudi culture.

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~ by Purple Velvet on June 6, 2009.

One Response to “The Open Minded Saudi Guy”

  1. Wallah nice post. I’m glad to see a Saudi woman’s perspective on Saudi men.

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