Anonymous: Would you wear hijab if it wasn't/if you didn't believe it was fard? And how do you deal on the days when your hair looks super good or when you feel stuck in a hijab rut and miss the versatility hair gives? thx.

I’ve only been wearing the hijab for 2 years now. Prior, I didn’t care if it was obligatory or not. I didn’t wear it because I didn’t understand it. I don’t do anything without knowing why I am doing it. So, I think rather than practicing something just because it is fard, theres no point if you don’t understand why you are doing what you are doing? What purpose does it serve, yeah? 

That’s something I’ve noticed these days, we do things because it is expected, it is what is obligatory, without connecting it back to us or the bigger picture. 

Anyway, I digress. Yes, I would still wear the headscarf if it weren’t obligatory. There are days that I doubt this because I feel myself giving in to really good hair days. But in the grand scheme of things, I know what purpose it serves, especially for me, and I don’t think I’d compromise that.

BUT LET ME TELL YOU THE DAYS MY HAIR LOOKS GOOD IT IS A DAMN STRUGGLE.  One of the reasons I started the hijab was because I realized how much emphasis I put on looks, esp. my hair. I spent more time putting my hair together in the morning than I did making sure I had everything I needed for school that day. How consumed and engulfed I was by my physical appearance. So, when I put on the hijab way back when, I knew that I had sacrificed that so I could focus more so on bettering myself as a Muslim, a student, daughter, friend, etc. Bettering myself as a person, rather than …well, bettering my hair.

So, the days I find myself wanting to just storm out with my nice hair lookin’ all good and flowing in the wind - I remind myself of why I am doing this. What’s the end goal? What does the hijab do for me in the bigger picture? What has it already done for me? Is it worth it? Whats my intention? Who am I doing this for? Why? Why? Why?

Alhamdulillah, I always find MY answer. Not my moms answer. Or my aunties answer two blocks down the street and around the corner. My answer as to what hijab is to me, how it makes me a better individual, and how it helps me better serve Allah.

THEN. I wrap my hijab like a boss. And I wink at myself in the mirror like ‘well damn you still fine as hell, go head girl, go do something fabulous today’ - then I proceed with being a badass.


Anonymous: how do you transition from wearing hijab to not? I started wearing hijab four months ago but its been really stressful. And I'm sure the crap people will give me for taking it off will be a lot, but I'm not sure it'll compare with the marginalization of being the only hijabi on a predominantly white campus. I've never been entirely convinced hijab was mandatory, but I did it because it was something I really wanted to do and being covered felt more comfortable. But its been exhausting. advice?

I’m not entirely sure what to tell you in terms of taking it off because I ended up putting it back on. I realized what it meant for me - I know that I felt utterly uncomfortable- more so than I did with it on.

I’ve only been wearing the hijab for 2 years now! And let me tell ya it has not been easy whatsoever. There were days I was so close, SO CLOSE, to taking it off. But my reasons were entirely vain and materialistic. I knew I was stronger than that - I just didn’t want to believe it because it gets hard. To go from seamlessly ‘fitting in’ to sticking out like a sore thumb covered in a paisley scarf.

I understand it can be stressful. But I think you have to remember why you wore it. You said being covered felt more comfortable. Are you willing to compromise that? Being the only hijabi at a predominantly white school can be very intimidating and overwhelming. But just as it has it’s downside - imagine the advantages of how distinct you are. How maybe your perseverance and determination could inspire others to follow?

There came a point I had a on and off period. Then eventually I got fed up with my wish washiness and I took my hijab off for a week…. and I felt naked. I talked out my discomfort with close friends and family - muslim and non muslim - hijabi and non-hijabi, I talked to people that I knew genuinely cared for my well being and personal growth. I didn’t turn to the ones that I knew would only tell me what I wanted to hear.

It gets hard but I had friends who supported me stand by my side - regardless of headscarf or not. You gotta find those that are willing to accept you - that understand you- with or without headscarf. I know what the hijab means to me and I am not the type to sacrifice the value it gives me and the mentality it puts me in - that’s what I realized in taking it off.

You are right. You will get crap. Regardless of what you do you will get crap. Thats life. People judge you regardless of what your choices are. At the end of the day it comes down to what you can handle and how well you handle it. I think you have to mentally prepare yourself. The headscarf doesn’t define you as much as your actions do.

Reflect on how it purely impacts YOU. Cause at the end of the day its what will build or break you. Not anyone else. but YOU. Do whatever you think will genuinely make you stronger.

I have friends (http://letustalkdrivel.tumblr.com/) & (http://holy-crackers.tumblr.com/) who might be able to help you more.

I’m sorry if I could not be of much help - if any one else has further advice feel free to comment.

Whatever you end up doing just do it with the best of intentions. Wish you all the best, iA. If I can help in any other way let me know.


HELP!!!! Please report, this person is not me.
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Anonymous: Hello if you dont mind my asking: when and why did you start wearing hijab? Im abt to be a college freshman and im thinking abt starting to wear it soon (b/c of religious reasons and because I like being modest and controlling what is and isnt on view to the public). But im a little worried abt the transition, esp considering that only half of my family is muslim and my views on islam still differ from theirs. Do you have any thoughts or advice?

When I was a junior in high school, I decided I would wear the hijab ‘cause all of my good friends were starting to wear hijabs too.Then I realized, I never really had a reason aside from ‘oh my friends did it so I did too’. To me, that wasn’t a good enough reason. It wasn’t enough to make me feel confident in it. I didn’t know what hijab was, aside from the cloth, or what relevance it had to me.

Growing up, I wasn’t ever forced to do anything. But, I think I also practiced my religion because I was told to rather than out of my own understanding and acceptance of it. I never asked why, I just did what was expected of me from my parents, not God.  I prayed when I felt like it (usually after hours of my moms nagging). I fasted during Ramadan ‘cause my parents told me to, etc. 
 It had no personal meaning to me, it had no personal value. 

So, as soon I as took the hijab off, I decided I’d find out more about hijab and Islam. That way, my decisions, were more concrete.

Come senior year - I was in one problem after another. I was in constant internal conflicts. Restless. Uneasy. Isolated.  I was ashamed of the decisions I was making. The way I was living. I wanted control of my life ‘cause it was spiraling downward fast. But thanks to my mission to gather knowledge I was slowly overcoming my obstacles. I found peace. I found a safe haven. I didn’t really feel alone. Islam was reassurance.

I practice Islam not because my mom nagged me rather ‘cause I saw my own beauty in it.

My freshmen year of college, Dec 06, 2011 - I officially decided to wear the hijab. Up until then I was constantly going to lectures/events/etc. I was on the rise, one blessing after another came pouring my way. But I was also in a relationship. All throughout I wanted to wear the hijab but to know I was doing what I was doing…and then to be wearing the hijab didn’t sit well with me - so I held off.

Dec 05, I broke it off with the sucka (okay, I shouldn’t say sucka, he was a really good hearted fellow and very understanding and supportive- but yeah knowwww) and then Dec 06 I threw on my hijab! 

So, why do I wear hijab?

I wear it as a reminder of who I am and who I want to be in the future, insha’Allah. It keeps me in check. It is a barrier between me and unwanted attention from people I could care less for and massive amounts of money blown on haircare.

I kid you not, my pride and joy used to be my hair. I guarantee you no one had nicer hair than me in high school. Hell, no one has nicer hair than me in college. (Insert slow motion Pantene hair flip) Now, if I do my hair, it’s not to maintain that rep, rather I do it now ‘cause I know I’m da cutest. I like how it reigns in respect without me having to demand it. 

It became a mindset. To be honest. To always try to do the right thing. Help others. Know you represent Islam, so try to do whatever you can to make God happy - in turn making those around you happy. 

The transition was, alhamdulillah, easy. All my friends supported it. Those who failed to understand, faded off on their own. I became a part of a close knit community of those who respected me, my decisions, and have done nothing but provide help, comfort, and love.

In summary, you don’t owe anyone an explanation. If it’s something you want to do. DO IT. But only for you and for the sake of Allah. You will find hate but the immense love you find will make up for it. People will discourage you but those that matter will encourage you. You have to define what it means to YOU. Or else your decision will falter.

Keep good company. Honest company. Who aren’t afraid to go out of their way for your well-being, in return do the same for them. When you question your wearing the hijab, you as a Muslim, these are the friends that remind you of who you are and why you do what you do.

As for your family, be understanding of them, and be patient in trying to get them to understand you. It’s all about communicating. Voice your concerns/beliefs. But also listen to theirs. Talk it out. It won’t happen overnight, rather gradually.

Have the right intention. You mentioned you want to wear it because “b/c of religious reasons and because I like being modest and controlling what is and isn’t on view to the public)”

You don’t owe me any explanation. At the end of the day you answer to Allah!

Keep your chin up! Don’t be afraid to ask for help. And on that note, I hope I helped. I feel like I ranted. Haha, if anyone else can help this sister out, please do, iA!