Wisdom and Tea: Reflections of Muslim Home-making Moms

Think. Learn. Act. Remind.

Mehmaan (Visitors)​: Rehmat (A Blessing) or Zehmat (A Burden)

Every practising muslim knows that visitors are a blessing from Allah and are sent to those with whom Allah (SWT) is pleased. I completely agree with this and whenever anyone visits our house we go out of the way to make them feel comfortable, make sure they are well served, provide them with good and cheerful company, invite the children also to sit and chat with them and overall make sure that whosoever visits us will want to visit us again.

That being said I have come across a few exceptions to the rule. When a visit is involved the sole responsibility of the visit going well does not lie exclusively on the shoulders of the host. In fact, some of that responsibilty also lies with the visitor. The visitor should keep the following in mind:

  • He/she is not visiting at an odd time when the person being visited might be sleeping or busy with other household work
  • Try to call before visiting to see what a reasonable time to come would be
  • Not knock on the door (or ring the bell) more than thrice.
  • When in somebody else’s house not to touch their private things
  • If the visitor is a habitual smoker and the host does not like smoking, especially in front of the children, then avoid smoking while in their house
  • Not to use bad language or talk about other things related to adults in front of the host’s children
  • Not make odd demands of the host e.g. ‘pick me up today, i want to come to your house’ or ‘you have to lend me 50,000 rupees’ or ‘take care of my child i have a few important things to do today’ (and these important things come up at least twice a week)
  • Not wear revealing clothes, even if you are not the most devout Muslim, if that does not go with the environment of the host’s house
  • Eat what is served to you and not ransack the entire fridge so that the host does not have to go grocery shopping after you have left

Now I was in a dilemma when someone, who had none of the qualities mentioned above, started visiting my house every 2-3 days. initially I put up with it because I did not want to be rude or offend Allah (SWT). I only made mild negative comments like ‘Please do not smoke in front of the kids’ but these did not seem to have any effect. I was met with remarks like ‘Don’t be irritating’ or just complete deafness. I reminded myself that this person is family and I have known them my whole life and I cannot just be rude to them even if I do not like their habits. Now I did not doubt the sincerity of that person. I know that she did care about me and consider me a great friend. This is a tough spot to be stuck in.

After around two years I was still not getting used to all these things. This is when I realised that I needed to get out of this situation even if it meant offending someone. But I had to do this without hurting anybody’s self-respect. This is when I gradually tried to slow down the visits. I started attending her phone less, made up various excuses about being busy. I did this gradually so that her visits, first every 2-3 days started spacing out to every 5 days, then 7 and now around 2 weeks. I think every 2 weeks is a tolerable time period. So I can continue to meet with her without spoiling our relationship too much and without her presence constantly affecting my life and household or my children.

I know that Allah says that you should keep good company but you cannot choose family.

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This entry was posted on March 1, 2012 by in Character, HomeMaking, Parenting, Reflections and tagged , , , , , , .

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