I am sure most of us have heard of many hilarious stories about people breaking up few days before their wedding day for the stupidest reasons.
One of the weirdest stories I have heard is about a couple breaking up because one of the fathers, being a doctor, wanted to write “The Doctor flan flan” (his title before his name) on the wedding card while the other father didn’t approve it because people would think of him of being of a lower social status.
What we gloat about the strength of family relations that we enjoy in the Arab world compared to the western countries can be problematic at times when families extend their natural role of support into dictating the lives of their members.
It is not enough that some fathers have to approve their son’s future wife and her family, but they also are entitled to write their titles and their names on their son’s wedding invitation card building on the stupidity of a society that worships superficiality.
The couple mentioned above would have prevented such problem from arising and may be happily married by now if they dared to stand up to themselves and drop off their fathers’ names. But that would be a huge disrespect to the fathers that would make hell break loose and leave them ostracized by their whole families. It is funny because writing down their mothers’ names would be perceived as disrespect for their families as well due to the social status of women in our society.
We may be proud of the achievements of the Jordanian women so far, but sometimes it is the tiny details in a unanimous behavior that we call tradition, and in which it seems impossible to break for we assign a sacred – almost – status to, that wakes us up and states that gender equality has a long way to go.
Individual freedoms suffer the same way.