As much as I love sharing my dating stories, there are a lot of experiences that I haven't had. I was 11 years old at the time, and very naive in my understanding about the faith.
That's why, as part of It’s Not You, I'll be talking to people with a broad range of experiences to see how things are different — and how they're the same. I didn’t understand the politics of what 9/11 meant, and it was just a very tough time for Muslims in general.
“I was, but then I got off, because I met somebody in real life and then I just really — I missed the excitement that comes with meeting somebody face-to-face.
I wanted whatever relationship I was in to have that excitement that comes from an organic meeting, because swiping is hopeless, and it just felt very, fuck, like automated and robotic.“Part of it is like the race thing, too, which is a little hard. I’m East African and there aren’t a lot of East African Muslims on these apps.
For example, Ramadan just ended, and just to know that the guy that I’m seeing is going to want to go to the mosque with me.
Not just wanting to go to the mosque with me, but is going to be the one to be like, ‘Hey, I’m going to the mosque for these late night prayers. ’”This isn’t the same, but I relate to those feelings when it comes to the prospect of kids, since I’d never get into a long-term relationship with someone who doesn’t want to have children.
You want someone who is going to be able to enjoy sharing these experiences with you.
And you know it’s difficult because I do see that men do want to start flirting with me.But my friends have gotten married off the apps.”] Yes. But you have to include the disclaimer that Islam forbids premarital sex. “I think what Islam does say is that if somebody has a sexual history, it’s not anybody’s business to talk about it. Anything that they’ve done is between them and God. But it seems like in the relationships that you’re describing to me, that’s not the case is at all.“Oh no. A lot of my girlfriends that are married, you know, they’re super well-educated.You don’t have to repent to your future spouse all the things you’ve done beforehand, because it’s not about that.”I feel like when you reached out to me, you had a story that you wanted to tell me. “One thing that is important is that you never really hear about Muslims and romance. A lot of the Muslim relationships that I know, even my own parents who are conservatives, are two-income households.And anyone who identifies as a Black Muslim — there are less of them on these apps. In your experience, do people talk about their sex lives with their friends?The free apps are a little more diverse, but people were less serious on those. So, I was on the apps, and I didn’t have any luck on them. “I will say that Muslim women, if they’re having sex, married or unmarried, tend to be really reserved about the conversations they have, compared to my non-Muslim friends, who tend to be very open and descriptive about the things that go on in their sex lives.”How does that topic even get broached in a relationships if both parties are aware of the fact that this is not something that should be done? The narrative, unfortunately, that gets spoken about is that women who are Muslim are, like, subservient or are not allowed to speak or are really beholden to their husbands in a negative way.