x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 January 2018

Excerpts from 'I Want to Get Married'

From Ghada Abdel Aal's book, based on her blog.

Honestly, the damn society we live in that rates girls according to the marriages they land, and that values women who get married super quick and that thinks there must be something wrong with the ones who don't, and that says, on the other hand, that it's a man's right to choose and be picky and that players are open-minded men of the world, and that sees nothing wrong with men getting married anytime after 40, even if it's to an 18-year-old ... that society is just UNFAIR and cruel! So that's why I, "Bride" (I'm using English here so people think I'm classy), have decided to write about this and explain the situation from all possible angles so that people who don't understand can get it, and so that people who don't know can find out - that girls are poor little things, that the pressure they're under gets worse every day, and that people judge them for something in which they have no hand.


Why are there more girls?

I'll tell you.

The thing is that women keep having kids until they have a boy. You'll find a ton of families out there who are like that ... four girls and a boy ... five girls and a boy ... six girls and a boy, etc ... A woman will keep popping kids out so that her moron husband can have a son. What's he going to do with that son that's so important? No idea. So at the end of the day, the kid becomes a good-for-nothing loser who's spoiled rotten and who'll blow through everything his parents have.


And another thing—men have become full of themselves and act like they're too good for all of womankind (may their eyes and health be struck, amen!), and so you'll find men sitting around with their mothers, laying their ground rules: "She has to be fair skinned, with brown hair and hazel eyes, and she has to look like Nelly Karim." Damn you all, I say!

Now that the number of women who still haven't found anyone has hit the millions, it's time for women to learn to love themselves and to look for success wherever they can find it and live life for themselves, and not like it's the opening credits to a show that hasn't started yet.

Society needs to stop confining women solely to the role of bride. Because when things fall apart, nobody will be able to help them out after all their expectations have been shattered, after they've been taught that there's only one path to take.


My cousin followed a woman once and the girl gave him such a giant whopper of a slap her handprint was on his face for three days. So he got all happy and said that that made it obvious that she was well-behaved and had been raised right, and he went ahead and asked for her hand. Yep, I swear. So, yes, it would turn out that that wouldn't be the only time she'd hit him, that she'd do it in all kinds of different situations, but the man's happy and swears by the day he met her and curses the day he met her moth ... - actually, never mind. She is like an aunt, after all.

On to the next: Manal, my cousin who's five or six years older than me. Four years ago, God blessed her and she got hitched. Well, Manal, you've always been a pretty, girlie thing - show us what femininity looks like once you're married. A few months after she got married - bam! - she got pregnant. Swelled up and expanded in all directions, but never mind, she'd give birth and pull herself together soon after, right? But then Manal, our go-to example for all things feminine and all things laid back, started looking like one of those women in the butter and detergent commercials. Up all night because the kid's crying and up all day because the kid's father wants something to eat and drink. And her salary, which she used to blow on perfume and make-up, now goes toward three things: Pampers, Pampers and Pampers.

Of course, being up for 24 hours has started to take its toll on her face. And as soon as her head leans against any wall, anywhere, you can hear her snores even in outer space.


A guy gets engaged to a delicate girl and walks around making up poetry about her, calling her a breeze to deal with, a positive breath of fresh air. Her voice is the sound of birds chirping, and anytime a man listens to a sweet song he'll think of her ... A month after the wedding - or a week, depending on his luck - when the demands start and the changes begin, and when he realises, all of a sudden, that everything has done a 180 ...

Because any woman with traits like these had to have lived in a bubble, completely isolated from other people. Never ridden public transport, never been harassed and forced to deal with an inappropriate guy and put him in his place. Never dealt with people at work, never been forced to take a stand and fight because someone violated one of her rights or because something unfair was happening to her. Never been to the market to buy vegetables, and certainly never cooked them. So, naturally, if she starts doing all this stuff after she's married, there's no way for her to keep being the delicate waif girl who's bruised by the blowing wind. There's no other option for her if she wants to survive married life.