TRASH AND TREASURE
Iman became restless when Mrs Hamzah told her she had a similar story. She fixed her gaze on Mrs Hamzah as her anxiety grew to hear her story and she couldn’t wait for her proposed solution on how to win back her husband’s love either.
Mrs Hamzah noticed her eagerness and decided to change the topic. She wasn’t comfortable with her restlessness. She wished for her to be calm before further discussion hence her decision to change the topic.
“I want to go grocery shopping in the afternoon, will you like to come along?” Mrs Hamzah digressed but Iman shook her head.
“No ma. Please don’t change the topic. I need to hear your story and I also desire to drink from the ocean of your wisdom. I can’t wait to have my husband back. Please help me.” Iman pleaded with teary eyes.
“I understand you perfectly but you have to calm down.”
“Yes ma, I’ll be calm.” Iman promised to comport herself while Mrs Hamzah gave her a deep stare before speaking again.
“You see my dear, my story is a bit similar to yours with a little difference. I was a virgin actually and I got married as one. But I could never forget what happened on our first night together. I was disappointed as much as my husband was. My dignity was questioned and my personality was insulted. The expectations is always that a woman must bleed after the first copulation but mine was different. I didn’t bleed and back then I wondered why that was so. Though my husband never asked if I was a virgin or not before our marriage but my father boasted of that to him because he trusted me so much. I was bothered that there was no blood stain but since I knew I hadn’t known any man before him, my mind was at ease because innocent mind fears no accusations. What really assisted my confidence was me being a nurse. I passed through the nursing college and I read wide enough to know that not everyone’s hymen looks the same and some women are born without one.
“Bleeding on the first sexual encounter may not happen with everyone and this is because some women hymens thin over time and may eventually tear off without sexual intercourse. If a woman’s hymen thinned over time, it’s already long gone before her first sexual encounter. Activities like splitting, horse back riding, gymnastics and even masturbation can break the hymen. Injuries such as falling on a sharp object or other major accident can also break the hymen…….” Mrs Hamzah was trying to explain but Iman interrupted.
“Ma’am, our stories are not the same. You were a virgin but I wasn’t. Your husband wasn’t mad at you but mine is still very angry.” Iman interrupted sharply.
“I haven’t finished my dear. Your own husband expressed his grievances and you know why he’s mad at you but mine didn’t verbally expressed his displeasure, he came up with cold attitudes. There was a breach in communication between us and no matter how much I tried to speak to him, he wasn’t coming around. This continued for like two months into our marriage and I was frustrated. Then one morning, I told him I was going to visit a friend and he gave his permission. Then on my way I had a fall which was caused by a street pothole and sprained my ankle. I couldn’t walk so I had to go to a nearby hospital. I wanted to call my husband but my phone fell into the water filled pothole. I was treated in the hospital and I had to take a taxi back home without visiting my friend again. Unknown to me, my husband had called my friend to confirm if I was with her or not. My friend gave a negative answer and upon my arrival, hell was let loose. That was when my husband burst everything he had concealed in his heart.” Mrs Hamzah paused with a heavy sigh.
“Please continue ma.” Iman urged eagerly.
“Immediately I limped into the house as I couldn’t walk well because of my injured ankle, my husband didn’t even notice my condition, the first thing he said to me was ‘I never knew I married a liar. Well I shouldn’t be surprised because lying is your family trademark, it runs in the blood’ Yes my husband said that to me.” Mrs Hamzah recalled.
“Subhan’Allah! So what was your response.” Iman asked eagerly.
“I was dumbfounded. I was speechless for seconds before finally asking him what he meant by what he said and he gave me the shocker of my life. He said I took after my father in lying because my father boasted to him that I was a virgin which I was not and now I lied to him that I was visiting my friend which I didn’t. Immediately after his outburst, I burst into uncontrollable tears. I was stripped off my dignity and my family honour was trampled upon. I cried my eyes out and he was surprised to see me cry so much. He wondered why I had to cry so much when I was actually guilty, because to him, I was guilty. After giving myself a nice cry, I packed my things and told him I was leaving. I told him I wouldn’t continue living with a man who doesn’t trust me. When I mentioned trust, he asked me what I meant and I cleared all his doubts. I told him I was a virgin and he was my first man and my dad didn’t lie to him. I also told him what happened that day which prevented me from visiting my friend. He was sorry. He pleaded for forgiveness and tried his best to comfort me. He believed me because he trusted me. Marriage without trust is a dead on arrival one. Communication is also key to a successful marriage. When issues are not trashed out, then there are bound to be misunderstanding and resentment. When resentment are accumulated, it threatens the love and peace in a marriage. My husband has been good since he knew the truth and we’ve been living fine Alhamdulillah.” Mrs Hamzah concluded her story and Iman has a question for her.
“Why do men cherish virginity so much.” Iman wanted to know.
“Hmmmm……… My dear, that’s a question that’ll best be answered by a man but I think it’s just natural to desire something new. A man desires to be the first to touch, hold, kiss and even graze the land. It boost their ego. It makes them feel like a champion. It arose their bragging spirit because they tend to brag about it. They feel proud of you and they feel they’re the luckiest on earth. But does meeting a woman as a virgin makes a man good to her? Yes and no. Yes, because a good man will always be good to his wife whether or not he meets her as a virgin and no, because a bad man will always treat his wife like a trash whether or not he meets her as a virgin.” Mrs Hamzah explained.
“Hmm…” Iman heaved a troubled sigh.
“Don’t worry my dear, your husband will come around, he’s just being childish. His joy of meeting a virgin was cut short hence his behavior. It’s just like the joy you derive from buying a new car compared to a second hand but contrary to a car, the durability or success of a marriage is not dependent on being a virgin. We can’t underestimate good virtues as the bedrock of a successful marriage. Just like you, some good women also have a past they’re not proud to discuss and which they’ve repented from. It will be awkward to deny them of a good partner when Allah has already erased their sins. Personally, I think everything boils down to qadar. A man will marry whoever he’s destined to marry whether virgin or non virgin. And in issues like this, when a man who desires to marry a virgin didn’t meet his wife as one, wisdom, maturity, fear of Allah, ability to accept Allah’s will and the love he has for her will restrain him from misbehaving towards her.”
“So are you saying my husband lacks all you’ve mentioned?” Iman asked with a beating heart.
“Time will tell.”
“Time will tell? Iman echoed.
“Yes time will tell.” Mrs Hamzah assured.
“Is it a good idea to tell a man you ain’t a virgin so as to avert something like this? And is it also a good idea for a man to ask his prospective bride if she’s a virgin or not?” Iman was curious.
“It’s not binding on a woman to disclose her past. According to islamic scholars, a sin Allah has concealed shouldn’t be revealed again. So she is under no compulsion to tell him but if he ask, she should try and be sincere. A man Allah has destined to marry you will do so whether you reveal your past to him or not. Your own man will never elude you. And concerning whether a man should ask or not, there’s no rule that says he shouldn’t. It’s just that asking such question shows how petty a man is. The noble prophet married a widow as his first wife, if marrying a virgin was a condition for marriage in Islam, Allah would have shown us through the prophet (saw). Virginity is just a plus and not being a virgin is not a minus. But like every other wishes of life, some men have preference for a virgin woman but such men should train their minds to accept Allah’s will for them. Virginity is an honor no doubt but a woman who has lost hers to a dirty past and has repented shouldn’t be crucified nor castigated. You ain’t a trash my dear, you’re a dignified woman and your husband will soon realize your worth.
“I hope he does. I missed him dearly. I can’t wait to have him back.” Iman lamented.
“Awwwn! Don’t worry, when his anger subsides, he’ll surely come back.” Mrs Hamzah assured.
“You promised to help me ma.” Iman reminded her sharply.
“Yes I do. Okay…. This is it….. Let’s put his love for you to test and we’ll be able to know if he married you solely because of virginity or he loves you too.” Mrs Hamzah suggested.
“How do we do that?” Iman queried.
“I want to know if he’s just angry because he was disappointed or he married you just to fulfil his quench to marry a virgin. Men marry for various and weird reasons. Some men marry for the sole aim of marriage, which is love and companionship while some men marry just for sexual gratification. Don’t be surprised that some men go ballistic if their wives is not a virgin because they wished to know how it feels like to disvirgin a woman, weird right?…….”
“And there are other weird men who doesn’t wish to marry a virgin. To them, the stress of breaking the hymen is unbearable and ridiculous. They also feels that a virgin is a novist and they don’t wish to go through the stress of teaching her anything. These kind of men are not common among Muslim men though, but they are weird, ain’t they?
“Yes they are.” Iman concurred.
“So you see, men marry for various and weird reasons. And men themselves are weird….. ”
“Hmmmm……… “Iman heaved loudly.
“So this is what we’ll do to get your husband back……… You’ll be a fake patient in my clinic and we’ll call him that you’re very sick. If he doesn’t show up, I’m afraid, he doesn’t love you. If he showed up and feel remorseful for his actions then he loves you, he’s just angry like a kid that was denied of candy.” Mrs Hamzah explained her plot.
“What if he later realized that we deceived him, won’t that be more catastrophic?
“Well, the last time I checked, telling a lie to mediate between two lovers is one of the three permissible lies to tell. So, are you in or not?” Mrs Hamzah asked with a shrug.
Lateefah Adewunmi Jumah