For example, in a shaabi area,
You can’t walk with your arms around a woman.
You’d be asking for it if you did.
It’s okay to just walk alongside a woman,
But without any display of affection.
If you walk with your arms around a woman,
You’d never hear the end of it.
I took the metro one day during Ramadan,
And got on the women’s passenger car,
Because I didn’t want to be harassed,
Or even looked at.
It has been rough.
I have been through so much.
I no longer want to ignore what's happening to me, around me.
I feel angry most of the time and empty.
I feel sad and alone.
I wonder why I care about people who don't care for me?
I had a recurring dream when I was young,
That my mother wasn’t actually my mother,
And that my father was married to another woman,
Who looked exactly like my mother.
I don’t know why I kept having this dream.
Maybe because my mother was very hard on me,
And my father was kind.
Everyone used to say that he spoiled me.
But I didn’t see it that way.
He used to shout all the time,
And my mother used to hit me,
So I’d grow up to be a proper housewife.
His cousin tried to convince me to go back to him.
I told him I won’t.
He said, “Do it for the girls.”
I told him, “Growing up with a mother and father, who are divorced, but respect one another, is so much better than living with two people who hate each other.”
My father was a difficult man.
He didn't like us girls.
He only liked the boys.
When I was 6,
My mother took me out.
She told me that we were going to visit someone,
But she didn't take me back home with her.
She left me there.
Why hit me for peeing myself,
When she could’ve tried to figure out why I was struggling with it?
Why hit me for putting on lipstick as a child,
When she could’ve just told me not to?
Why hit me with belts, cables and shoes,
When she could’ve reasoned with me?