Why Molly ran
When 12-year-old Molly Campbell disappeared from her Scottish home last year, it was feared she had been kidnapped by her father to be married against her will in Pakistan. But, like her name, the truth wasn't quite as it seemed. Cathy Scott-Clark and Adrian Levy report
I've been following the Misbah/Molly story on and off for quite some time now, and this article definately provides a lot of much needed background.
But even more than being the sad story of a broken family, it speaks of the difficulties that intercultural/interfaith couples face. This marriage started out between a nominal christian/secular young white british girl, and a nominal muslim/secular young pakistani british man. Where as the usual m.o. is that the husband will practice more and become more conservative as he grows older, in this case the wife feels drawn to Islam. Maybe it was a way to feel connected to and accepted by her husband's family and culture, but for whatever reason, her embrace of Islam draws her husband back to practicing the faith. While I can't tell for sure what was going on in her mind from the article, it seemed like she longed for acceptance, but didn't really have Islam in her heart. Islam can seem oppresive if you don't embrace it with all your heart, and from the article, it looks like Louise was crushed by it.
Women who embrace Islam through their relationship/marriage with a muslim man are often subjects of suspicion. Did they convert because their husbands influenced them? How will their faith hold up if things go south with their husbands? Heck, even those who were muslim before marriage are still viewed under a cloud of suspicion. Alhamdulilah, I've seen women become increadbly devout in their practices, content with Islam as a way of life. And unfortunately, I've seen women be crushed far too often for my liking.
When an american woman marries a muslim man, she will inevitably be told to watch Not Without my Daughter. We roll our eyes, sigh and try to change the subject. We're intellegent, independent, and think we know what we're getting ourselves into. Unfortunately, we often times don't.
So, I propose that american women who want to marry muslim men read this article. We've all heard the nasty things muslim men can do to western women. But how often do we examine ourselves and ponder on the problems our issues may create? Here now is an (extreme) example of what western women can do to themselves if they're not prepared for an intercultural/interfaith relationship. inshaAllah ta'ala, nothing like this will befall myself or any of my friends in similar situations, but one never knows
Also, on a random side note, either Louise or the article messed up a wee bit on the hajj thing. Hajj isn't during Ramadan. You don't (have to) fast during hajj. Maybe they made umrah during Ramadan, but umrah ain't hajj.