Tuesday, July 22, 2008

How come Daddy gets all the credit?

A friend of mine is Philippina. She's married to a Bahraini(trying to get divorced but hey...the Bahrain courts just love to keep us women married to our abusive spouses at all costs) and has 3 girls. Its not difficult when looking at the girls to see that they have Philippina blood in them...its in their faces. Interesting thing is that they dont speak Philippina...it was forbidden by their father for their mother to speak it to them when they were small. Apparently, they are thought of as being only Arabs and speaking their mothers tongue was considered beneath them. Incidently, their mother doesnt speak Arabic and so they speak to each other in English...father doesnt seem to mind his daughters speaking English to his Philippina wife...but not Philippina...why is that I want to know?

My own children are half American of course...unless your talking to a Bahraini...then they are only considered to be Bahraini...I as their mother...apparently had nothing to do with their creation other than to house them within my body for 9 months(you know the story about the birds and the bees right)...Im starting to think many Bahrainis never heard that story...you know...the one in which we are informed that BOTH the father and the mother contribute chromosomes etc in the creation of their child. Child comes out maybe looking like the dad...or maybe looking like the mom...but is essentially a little of both...right?

Im getting really ticked off the more time I spend here when I realize just how racist Arabs are...my apologies to any Arabs that read this that arent racist. Not only are they racist against other races...they are even racist against other Arabs...sheesh...it gets old fast. But my beef is mainly with foreign wives of Bahrainis(Im guessing its a problem within other Arab nationalities but I will stick with what I know).

So lets set the scene first....Bahraini man either travels for study or goes deliberately to another country and either way ends up with a new foreign wife.(some of them dont go to the trouble of travelling etc and just marries the housemaid or other imported employee). Now, if your a lucky new foreign wife you will have married into a family that accepts that other nationalities are worthy of marriage to their son...if your not so lucky(like so many of us) your new family will be hostile and unwelcoming....but rather than kick the ass of the errant son who brought home this foreign invader into their midst...they decide to take it out on her....and for many of us...life in the family home is about as far from married bliss as one can get. (another story another time).

Heres the thing that really irks me though...despite whether or not you accept the wife or not...when children come along...why must you also make the children...her children...feel ashamed that they have a non Arab mother? Why must you degrade their mothers nationality...her tongue...her culture...her country...basically everything that has anything to do with her and where she comes from? Why make innocent children feel ashamed of the one person in the world they should love more than any other?

I know many many sons and daughters of mixed parents that refuse to even tell people that their mother is not Arab...they hide the fact and are made to feel ashamed of themselves for feeling they must hide that fact about their mothers. Nice!....my two sons had a rough time growing up in Hidd...it would seem that while Arabs like to worship all things American(you know you do despite your loud protesting) ... this worship only extends to material things...clothes...music...movies...lingo etc...mothers are not included(of course by worship I mean hold in high esteem and treat with respect and or dignity). My sons were made to feel ashamed that their mother was American...why was this done to them...what did they have to do with whom their father chose to procreate with...and why is the nationality of your mother something to feel ashamed of anyway? Didnt God create "nations to know each other"...Im assuming the "knowing" extends somewhat past what your neighbors like to do on Friday nights...yes?

So here we have all these Bahraini men going and shaming the Arab race by making babies with non Arab women...as a result...these mixed babies are raised(most not all) as only Arab and nothing to do with whatever their mother happens to be. Many of them never even visit her country...meet their grandparents from her side...know even the most basic things that are half of their identity. Doesnt anyone ever wonder why Bahraini men never seem to consider this choice they are making is no doubt going to have far reaching affects...and never good ones? Shouldnt they be concerned about the life they will subject their children too if they should have any...dont they care enough about the mother of their children to want their own children to never be ashamed of her merely because she is not Arab? For many Bahraini men...their selfish desires are pretty much the only thing they are thinking of(if your not one of them then my apologies to you....and are you married?)

And heres the real kicker in all this...Bahraini women are not allowed to marry non Arab men(I know some do but its something very rare and she usually does it outside the country...and this holds true for all Arab countries)...Arab women are only for Arab men...and mixed race children are only credited to their Arab daddies...and Arab men are never blamed for any of this shit....Arab women are scorned and shunned for daring to marry outside her race...mixed children are scorned and shunned(for the most part) for "daring" to be born to a non Arab mother(Im inclined to believe that if many of these children had the choice before birth...they would choose to have the Arab half of them removed rather than their mothers half...just a guess here as most of the families that have such racism among them are generally not very nice families anyway)

I guess my point being that Arabs are the recipients of the Holy Quran in which God mentions time and time and time again that our race should never be a factor in determing how we treat each other...but after 21 years in Bahrain...Im a firm believer that for many Arabs...its the only thing that matters....and thats something worth being ashamed about.
*my sincere apologies to any and all Arab families that treat foreign wives with all the acceptance, love, and respect she deserves.


coolred38 said...

Do not ask me what the heck is up with blogger these days...this posted totally weird...and isnt showing my pic....darn blogger!

Anonymous said...

Some of the posts you've written lately remind me of another blogger located in your vincinity i believe... achelois.wordpress.com

She actually wrote a post on this very topic recently that you might find interesting...


Nzingha said...

My children haven't had an issue yet with me being American. They are both if you ask them and they say it with pride not shame. of course many of the children they know are of mixed nationality. I do know of some families in the same way you mentioned and it is simply pathetic that a man would choose to marry a woman of another nationality but than deny it after the fact with his actions.

Gardens of Sand said...

CoolRed, I am sorry you had to experience some of the worst traits of our culture. We have some good, I promise!

I think the area you live in has a lot to do with what your children are experiencing. A shame, I know.

I remember when I was 15 or so, a lady pulled me over at my aunt's wedding to ask me whose wife a lady was. The lady she was referring to was my bestfriend, a blonde British 15 yr old!

I think things are getting better as more and more mixed marriage take place. Hang in there and tell your kids to hold their head up.

On a side note, I really hate it when the foriegn spouses of Bahrainis change their name to an Arabic one. I know many are pressured to do that. That is a shame and has always rubbed me the wrong way.

Marahm said...

I know firsthand what it means to be considered the father's nationality, and to reject the mother's.

My father was Italian-American, and my mom German-American. We kids were raised Italian. Our father told us we were Italian. We ate Italian food. Our extended family observed Italian ways of life, and mingled amongst themselves only. I rarely saw my mom's relatives.

As a child, I used to wonder why Mom didn't stick up for her ancestry. I always felt bad that I was really only half Italian.

This denigration of the other side cannot but instill a sense of diminished worth in the child. I believe mothers need to wake up, and own themselves. Tell their children about the more admirable qualities of their other side. Take them to the country of half their ancestors. Speak a few words of the language to them. Let them become tri-lingual. They have the right-- the birthright.