… I found out a series of email to transsexuals and prostitutes”
As you go through life as an Egyptian woman you go through different kind of turbulences. As one of those living abroad, or God forbid belonging to two nationalities or even raised in Egypt in the so called “A class” educational system you are sure to get screwed in the head or disoriented. One thing you are sure to go through, as an Egyptian woman is the ongoing reminder that you are incomplete without a partner. And no, we don’t mean a lover; you have achieved nothing unless you have been shackled in wedlock.
You can be as liberal as can be and your parents could be those “cool” progressive families – but in Egypt no matter where you are in the food chain an unmarried woman in the household is a sense of worry. So like any other woman I had my idea (I hate the word checklist) of what would be the best man to fit with me. I thought I was the smartest of them all and I secretly judged my friends who had done marriage “the wrong way” and ended with divorce.
At the age of 29 I met a lovely Turkish man – true I felt no passion towards him, love was something that I objectified, he was nice looking, not as intellectual or smart as I would have wanted in a partner – nothing in common – but I took the conscious decision of “settling”.
I had a long talk with myself – I am a helpless romantic, I could not wait for Prince Charming and the amazing travels we were going to have, the beautiful home and all the hosting we were going to be doing – I am no fool, I do realize marriage comes with its responsibilities – and I was no spoilt brat so I didn’t mind the chores and the challenges that would be a small due for the wonderful life I was going to have.
But the years droned on, and my heart was broken way too many times waiting for “the one” then I crossed paths with this young man who called me his one and only, he was kind and generous, well behaved towards me, my friends and my parents. I looked at myself and told myself “29 years waiting for someone, who might not even exist – what if the older generation of women I know were right – what if television and media and those terrible stories of Mills & Boon lied? What if it is up to you, the woman, to live happy and make your home what it’s meant to be. I am smart I move departments in office I won’t be able to create a system that my home can function with? Ha! Of course I can – I am Wonder Woman, remember?”
After a short period of time I got engaged, and I deserved an Oscar for the happy bride to be I played. I got a huge rock to show everyone how lucky I was – how it can be done – after all those years I got the guy, the happy ending and the rock!
My fiancée was living abroad so our engagement period were four months in which he flew in twice for 10 days each time, he was generous and loving and his decency was something all my friends envied me for.
I did all the preparations for the wedding alone, but I had one of the best weddings in Cairo – it even ridiculously was voted on Facebook top wedding for 2010 – but before all this I took my engagement very seriously, I made sure I sat down with my fiancée and discussed how our marriage would look like. Marriages are tough work when you are two people from the same country and same background – so imagine marrying a foreigner who is the only one in his friends and family who spoke my language! We discussed everything from what food will be in our home to how we are going to save and buy homes in which country, if we want children, will they be raised in Egypt or Turkey and so on.
I was legally married two months before the wedding (Katb Kitab) because in my case I had papers and foreign country policies to be able to move with my husband. Three days before the wedding, my husband flew in and while we were sitting with my dad (this was a by the way incident not that he felt he needed to sit and talk) he informed my dad in my presence that he would not be paying for his half in the wedding – I am already married (on papers), dress steamed and ready to be worn, invitations out, hotel 50% paid – all in order – and I get this bombshell. His reasons were that he had thought he would get paid a bonus and with that money he was going to pay.
I am my dad’s only daughter, and bless his heart he wanted to be happy, and he could financially afford it – so he told me not to worry and he would pay for it. I told my dad he is missing the point, this is a man who kept me in the dark about a major financial incident – this would become a pattern in the marriage – and I do not think this is an equation for a successful marriage, we as an Egyptian culture are not trained to confront and we are “nicer” kind so my dad looked at the bright side – he said I would be worried if he had the money and was stingy with you – so I got married.
I never saw a dime in my marriage, I never knew where the money went, he always didn’t have money (by then after 2 months of marriage we were in a Gulf country and he was getting paid in dollars a 6 digit salary) … but this was not the problem …
After the huge wedding we were in our 5 stars luxurious hotel suite – he couldn’t perform sexually – I thought it was me since I was nervous and I kept talking and was not the fun receptive sexual partner – he told me I was turning him off …
On our beautiful honeymoon island, the problem was still existing – impotent? Not really the problem the erection was there – it is he couldn’t perform – just as we were about to complete the sexual intercourse he would get flaccid. I sensed something wrong; I know you are thinking duh! But no there was a mystery there, I just couldn’t put my finger on it – this was not a normal sexual orientation problem – something was really wrong. Anyways, all in all we lived together for 9 months, he was no man and no husband, and it was like having a roommate in a foreign country, that didn’t speak your language. I had a beautiful home, I hosted people everyday, I was successful in my job, I paid the rent, bought the furniture, handled expenses – and you would think I would be getting any sex!
Four months into the marriage I decided I would leave, it was just complicated – how do you face the world when everything from the outside seemed ok. I didn’t want the big Scarlet Letter “D” – so by the fourth month we had stopped talking, but he was still charming and decent. Never raised his voice and never humiliated me. He just lied, stole my money (in a sense this was stealing) and broke my heart – ironically I chose the good man and settled to avoid the pain of what love and passion might bring.
I had a choice; I could have remained in the marriage – the funny part he had no problem continuing that way or I could leave it up to God, maintain my dignity and walk away with a head held up high, believing in all that’s good and maybe one day if it’s meant to be, I would get a chance to be somebody’s partner.
For the sake of curiosity I sat with my soon to be ex husband, asking him – hoping to get an answer of why he married me when he obviously didn’t love me and had no sexual interest in me. He informed me that this was financially convenient for him and he made me hear whatever I needed to hear so he would marry me. I guess, had I not been desperate to settle I would have seen the signs earlier, but I have no resentment – I was meant to go through those lessons in life.
Two months after the separation we went into an ugly procedure of getting the Turkish divorce and one night I was angry and I hacked his email – and I found a life very different from the one I thought my husband led … I found out a series of email to transsexuals and prostitutes – it seemed my husband had some kind of sexual psychological thing and could not perform unless it was this kind of dirty – I thought of confronting him – but I decided to move on … all I had lost is some money and nine months of my life – but I kept my virginity, my optimism and my self esteem and I thank God for the friends, and the good people in my life that when I chose to confide in them helped me move through it.
I wrote this down for readers to know about the mistakes other women had done – the aim is a healing process and to raise awareness that marriage is a serious issue and should be done for the right reasons – and make sure you go into it with eyes wide open – and if you are going through a horrible divorce or marriage – know that there is a life out there after this rough time.
Do you know such a case? Do you know a way to help women in such a situation? Do you have a cousin, friend or sister who is in such a dilemma and cannot solve it? Mail us the story along with solid proof and we will publish it. Let’s raise awareness for all the women who cannot raise their voice! Mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org