By Hajar Berghabi
By Hajar Berghabi
Morocco World News
Fez, February 19, 2013
Does having a boyfriend or a girlfriend mean you are outgoing, open minded, modern and cool? Is dating someone a sure step to getting married? Is having such a relationship part of our culture and religion? The answer is simple: Certainly not.
Answering these questions, I would say that having a boyfriend or a girlfriend does not really mean you are modern and cool. It has nothing to do with that. It is surely an extraneous phenomenon that is spreading in our society. It is neither part of our culture nor our religion. Still, young people are getting used to such relationships. It is maybe even in fashion. If one does not have a boyfriend or a girlfriend, he or she might be considered knotty and backward. This is simply because we are in the process of normalizing this kind of relationships. That is to say, people are taking such relationships for granted- as something normal.
Yet, it is not accepted in our society the way it is accepted in the west for example. People there or youngsters could tell their parents about their relationships. They might even invite their boyfriends or girlfriends home and introduce them to their parents. Here, it is different. We still can’t dare do that. Almost all these relationships are taking place secretly.
So, hiding the fact of dating someone is very telling and self-explanatory. It reveals that both our culture and religion do not welcome this relationship. It means young people are aware of the fact that what they are doing is wrong. It also shows that people are conscious about that (they do it secretly) but they cannot help but do as their friends do. Some people are just following the crowd: just because their friends have boyfriends or girlfriends, they think they should have one too. In my opinion, that’s abnormal.
In some other cases, love is the pretext under which either girls or boys would justify their act. Globalization, in addition to emotions and human nature plays a crucial role in initiating such things. People are more open to other cultures. Unfortunately, we –Moroccans- almost always choose and use the bad side of everything. We do not know how to be selective. We just appreciate things, acquire foreign habits and forget about our traditions, culture and religion. I am not against being open to the world. I am just saying that we have to know that we are not supposed to be identical.
Some think that getting a boyfriend or a girlfriend is the first step or the shortest way to getting married and finding the perfect husband or wife. So, they venture in looking for this boy/girlfriend that can become their future husband or wife forgetting that our society is a patriarchal one. It allows the man what it does not allow the woman. Therefore, a boy can have one girlfriend, two, three or even ten in his life; it does not matter. He does not have something called reputation that he would care about or be afraid of, if it is tarnished. He would not care if he is caught by his mother or father or any other member of his family because his reputation in this regard is not as important as a girl’s.
In this vain, I would like to mention that our society is also schizophrenic and biased. A man cannot accept or forgive his sister if he knew that she is having a boyfriend. He would also prefer to get married to a woman who has got a “good” reputation – not having had any relationship with anyone before him, a “pure” and a chaste woman. While playing the role of the patriarchal man, he has no problem in having as many girlfriends as possible.
As far as I am concerned, I am against having a boyfriend or a girlfriend. I think that feelings should be mitigated with reason. That is to say, there should be a balance between what the mind and the feelings dictate. This is because – I believe that the best and most beautiful relationship that can exist between a man and a woman is marriage. It is a legal relationship that can supplement dating secretly. This way, at least, the woman’s rights are safe officially. Also the couples don’t have to hide or blush if someone from their families comes across them. Moreover, I am also against it because of it repercussions on both sexes. I won’t say that only girls might go through traumas if the relationship does not go as planned but boys can suffer as well from psychological troubles. Yet, I might venture and say that since girls are more sensitive, they tend to suffer more. Either the relationship was a good or a bad one; I can state that it will affect their lives in one way or another.
To sum up, psychology is very important in this regard, because if you convince yourself that you can do without this relationship, you will end up living your life normally without yearning for such love or relationship. I can add that sometimes we don’t have to go through the experience others had gone through to learn lessons, we can just learn from their mistakes and experiences. This is actually what happened to me so that not having a boyfriend became one of my principles in life. When I was studying in secondary school, I used to see many teenagers of my age arguing and fighting against their boyfriend or girlfriends. They were even insulting each other when their relationship does not end up well. These behaviors did impact me hugely. I could not stand being treated in such ways, so I decided not to accept any boyfriend.
It is true that I witnessed only one of the bad sides of this kind of relationships, but it was enough to teach me a lot. Religion is also instrumental because it can help you recognize the wisdom behind prohibiting such relationships. The drawbacks could be more than psychological and they can affect the whole society if relationships between men and women are not regulated. The family has also a vital role to play in this regard.
Here I can mention the pivotal role both my mother and father played in inculcating me this principle. Their scrupulous accompaniment and abundant pieces of advice were of a great help and enabled me to have a different perspective than most girls of my age. I would not shy away of stating that girls who haven’t experienced such a relationship should be the pride of every man and woman, as these cases are becoming very scarce in our society.
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Morocco World News’ editorial policy
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