I was spoiled, wanted for nothing, and had everything. Then I married a man whose immediate family consists of 24 people. Family gatherings take place as often as daily since the entire family lives in very close proximity to one another.Before meeting my husband he was feeling the Arabian pressure of ‘marriage’.Family members were actively seeking out prospective wives to include cousins. They have very close family ties and rarely marry outside of their tribe. And someone he could see himself investing a lifetime in. Certainly I’m not someone his mother would have chosen for him, but she’s never made me feel that way. Perhaps they were just relieved he was finally getting married?
For a woman to shed a tear and a man be the cause is shameful. Large family gatherings happened once a year during family reunion time and even that came to an abrupt halt when my grandparents died.Fortunately my husband does fit comfortably into this part of the culture he appears to have left so far behind. The typical Southern Belle raised as an only child in America. I never had to share anything with anyone — even my space.But we go to the local co-op and people literally stop what they’re doing to stare. I respect that more than the stares, and I think my husband appreciates it more as well.My husband is very out-going and friendly to everyone.They accept I need a fork to eat my meals and they’ve always accommodated me without making me feel awkward.
I’m never left out of family events and they even go out of their way to embrace things from my culture.
I’m just so thankful, every day, that I married a man who is the perfect combination of East and West. We live in a very tribal area where Americans are almost never seen.
When we venture into the city or the malls no one even takes a second look.
Many people have asked me what it’s like being an American woman married to an Arab man.
Some even ‘warned’ me before making the decision to get married.
In his culture men have an obligation to truly take care of their wives.