by Deema Alasad
We live in a country where
the ultimate goal is marriage
And I’m talking about girls
& guys of a certain age
Because in Sudan, marriage
Has a specific deadline
After which you’d be labeled
You mostly don’t need love
To get married in Sudan
You just need
To come asking for your hand
Or a pretty girl in a wedding video
That was sent by your mom
In your غُربة,
To check its girls out
And carefully choose “The One”
Those guys who are “ready”
And by ready I mean financially,
Twenty-something year old graduate
Fixed income, nice salary
Second to that he should have
A respectable, good family
And by good family I mean one
That fits all the racist criteria
That every Sudanese family has,
Thinking they’re superior
Third to that is his reputation,
Does his rep suck?
Does he smoke weed?
Does he do drugs?
Fourth is his religion,
Does he fast? Does he pray?
Is he spotted in
More than once a day?
If the 3rd & 4th criteria, do not fit
It’s no problem خليهو
ياخواننا دايماً في احتمال، انو ربه حيهديهو
Fifth is his looks, according
To your family’s taste
Is he too tall or short?
Does he have a nice face?
And FINALLY, his personality
Would he treat her well & stay,
Come hell or high water?
Would he go all John Cena
On our beloved daughter?
If he fits into at least three
Out of those six rules
Congrats, my dear,
You are officially
Leave him while you still can
Because aslan your aunt
Now, for girls, it’s harder
Because your whole life you’re prepared
For being someone’s 3aroos,
You’re expected to grow your hair,
To have specific looks, like
A certain colour of skin
A certain thickness of eyebrows
Or you’d just have to paint them in
A certain attitude towards,
You can’t go out alone at night,
You can not laugh too loud
You can not be too skinny,
You can not be too fat,
You can not be too happy,
And you can not be too sad,
You can not simply say
What you think
Because that, is THE most
That potential 3arees will judge & objectify
You to your very core
And his family will do the same, when they come knocking your door
No matter what a sinner he is,
In his mind, he deserves a saint,
Because that’s the kind of nonsense
Society paints in our brains
So for a guy seeking marriage,
He’d be looking for this:
A girl who possesses all the things
On his (مواصفات) list …
The list starts with two things,
But let’s consider them one
حلبية شعرها طويل
Is usually ALWAYS number one
That’s directly related to the
increasing skin bleaching rate
Sudan will never move forward as long as we discriminate!
Second of all, this lightskinned girl
How is her reputation?
Does she cuss? Does she smoke?
If so, she’s out of question.
Does she wear hijab or not?
Does she have guys as friends?
OH MY GOD how dare she??
This engagement must come to an end!
Third of all, her family,
Do they fit the racist criteria?
Compared to them in the “social
Hierarchy”, are they inferior?
Fourth of all, her career,
This is where guys split into two
And, girls, I’m sorry to tell you this
But it is never about you!
Group A are supportive,
And want her to work
Group B are ignorant,
And FORBID her to work,
And both groups do not
Consider & realize
That this big decision
Is her’s to decide!
And if she works, she can not
Be more rich & successful
Because that immasculates him & he’ll turn very spiteful
Fifth of all, her mentality,
Nobody wants a feminist
She can’t be too open minded
Or have too many opinions
She has to cope with everything
With the least possible objections
She has to obey his every word
With the least possible rejections
Sixth of all, can she cook?
His mom would definitely ask
She doesn’t want this girl
Feeding her son a bunch of junk
Seventh, his mother would have
To approve of every single aspect
And this is always the hardest part
She’d never know what to expect
Every mother of every son
Thinks no one’s good enough
Even if her son’s a meth addict,
Who’s smokes a load of that stuff!
That mother, if nice, will give her relief
In that case I’d strongly advise her
To run back to her (بورة)
Both ways, she’d have to
Until it’s no longer retrievable
She’d also have to make it look subtle, & make it look quite believable
And if she manages to pass all seven
You got yourself a 3aroos,
But if she fails, just a single one
كل الحكاية حتبوظ!!
So let’s say these two “lovebirds”
Get married eventually
My guess is it’ll most probably fail, & I mean beyond epically
First of all, they’re not in love, & love can not be forced
Sure, it can be faked for a few years, then
They’d reach a certain stage where they start to get depressed
Affairs start up, all the fighting, & the stress
Questions pop up: was it really worth the trouble?
What could I’ve achieved if I wasn’t in this couple?
I wish i can go back in time, I am not happy with this
But by then they’d be way in too deep, with a house & a gang of kids
So in most cases, for the sake of these kids, they’re forced to stay together…
For years to come, until they grow old & bitter, resenting eachother
My point is, it’s rarely a happy ending, if you decide to get hitched
Based on a video, money, a deadline, or your Haboba’s wish!