An insight into my hijab journey

Hey my loves! I want to discuss something that people online have been raising questions and issues about my hijab (scarf) and how I portray it on social media. This isn’t a hate post where I’ll complain, but its a chance for those who don’t wear the hijab or don’t understand to see where i’m coming from and as always i’ll be 100% honest. I also want to talk about my journey into wearing it full time out and about and some of the issues I face with modest clothing.

If you follow me on my Instagram you’ll notice that I have my hair out in some of the older posts and people have asked whether I’ve just started wearing it now and some have been really mean calling me all sorts of things from “hypocrite” to “whore” to “part time hijabi”. I’ve heard it all. Im not mad at these comments but I think it comes from frustration or confusion and the mentality that once you choose to wear a hijab that’s it. You cant ever show your hair. Sometimes when I look at someone’s feed and they inconsistently wear a hijab I feel a tiny bit uncomfortable too but never to the extent where I would call them such horrible names. That’s bullying. Therefore, to these comments both the hateful and curious one’s I say that im going to keep these pictures solely because  I think they showcase makeup at a time where i didn’t always wear a hijab and its a look that I just cant recreate, I got lucky, but unfortunately im not wearing a scarf and that’s that.

Looking back to when I was a teenager if I remember correctly I started to wear the hijab in year 7. For the wrong reasons unfortunately and not realising what a massive decision it is and what it means by wearing it. Embarrasingly i’ll admit that I only wore a hijab when I couldn’t figure out how to style my hair. So as soon as I found a new hairstyle I took it off and when I get bored I started to wear it. The cycle continued until year 9 when I was taught what is required of me as a young muslim woman. I also felt stupid and bad when I heard school kids calling me a part time hijabi and i’ll also admit that I wore the hijab again (this time for permanent) so I could feel better and not be made fun of. I wasn’t exactly pressured by my family, I don’t remember my mom telling me you need to wear the hijab. It was my peer pressured, “i need to do this because everyone else is and I want to be a good muslim” 14 year old decision that I thought was great at the time.

Moving onto teenagehood I struggled between wanting to wear loose off the shoulder tops and cute knee high boots and tousled hair and then wanting to wear an abaya and then wanting to wear cute Asian clothes. I was stuck between these different personalities and I didn’t know which one to choose and who I was really. On special occasions I always took my hijab off so it still wasn’t permanent. In a professional environment for example interviews, university presentations or assessment centre’s I feel like I stand out so much. I remember being at an assessment centre in the summer where I was the only hijabi there and I was constantly thinking, “i hope they take me seriously” again and again and again. It was all rubbish and in my head, yet I felt so different and sort of, “not fitting in”.

I realised that if I feel like this then it must mean im struggling and I need to have a reason to wear it and be happy choosing this. Before I started my blog, I made it my mission to be absolutely consistent and always wear a hijab in every selfie so im putting out a consistent image of myself. I also did some further research as to what a hijab would protect me from, why we’ve been asked to do this and imagined who i would be without a hijab. And i came to the conclusion that i would be someone else, i wouldnt be me. My behaviour would change, my dress sense, the way i carry myself, the way i speak even. I absolutely hated the idea of being someone else, my hijab is my identity, my personality and i wouldn’t change it for the world. Eventually I founded the right reason and was happy with it too!

The issues i have with modest clothing

Quite often i find myself struggling to find modest clothing that i love and i feel confident and glamorous in. Wearing a hijab isnt just restricted to covering your hair, its becoming modest in all aspects for example clothing. Sometimes i see a modest clothing brand on Instagram and i get so excited until i see the price and just get taken aback at how utterly ridiculous it is. I dont understand the thought process behind the pricing when modest, stylish clothing should be so easily accessible. So if there are any modest clothing brands out there or are reading this please do keep the customer in mind and make modest clothing just as easy to shop for like regular clothing!

Its still a struggle at times where im tempted to take a selfie with my hair out and I still have a long way to go. Its a learning process that so many hijabi’s can connect and bond over and its beautiful. Let me know if you have any further questions and be sure to follow my blog for instant email notifications whenever I post!

See you in my next post Queens!

Love from Sahibah x

 

 

Self harm

Hey my loves, the topic of Self harm is a very personal sensitive one, and i pray who ever is going through this comes across this post and thinks again before doing it. I wont be an agony aunt telling you to stop, and think that your stupid for harming yourself, but instead i want to reassure and remind you that you’re not alone.

I have come across so many people who self harm its crazy, i knew i wasnt alone but i just didnt realise so many people had this problem. Now i know for a fact, that if you self harm and you explain yourself to another person who doesnt self harm, they will 100% not understand where you’re coming from. I’ve been called stupid, a lowlife, attention seeker, weirdo, emo, the list goes on. But my family and friends who have tried to help me and i really appreciate their efforts,  they just dont get it. Only someone who self harms will understand someone else who does the same. It’s a fact.

I came across someone on Twitter who put up pictures of his scars, and there were some horrible comments that probably pushed him further and further. I messaged him asking if he was okay, and i have to say talking to someone else who self harms is so eye opening, its a strange feeling of coming together through pain.

If i was to describe the process of coming about self harm, it would be really difficult but im going to describe it as best as i can from what i feel. When im in a personal crisis that i cant deal with, i get angry really quickly, my anger is unbelievable. Through frustration, because i dont want to get violent or destroy anything, i take it upon myself by cutting. It releases all my anger and pain away from me and onto something else; my skin. Its not always anger, sometimes its a deep sadness, it used to come from feeling worthless and a form of punishing myself, so it happens because of these emotions or sometimes all at once.

So if im in a crisis, i have a lot of pent up anger in me and i reach for my weapon. In this moment in time, im overcome by this sort of inner demon, my dark side,  its a darkness and the person who i was lets say 3 days ago, is not there, she’s vanished. Im completely overcome by this deep dark shadow over me and it wont go unless i cut. I’ve tried resisting it by drawing on myself, going for a relaxing bath even, scratching myself, but the urges are so strong, so intense that its impossible to think of anything else other than the sensation of cutting and seeing blood on my skin. It sounds scary but i have checked for posession a couple of times so its safe to say it really is my dark side. Its an addiction. And like an addict, its really tough to get out of.

I’ve been self harming for about 7 years now, so its an addiction im struggling with. Everytime im in a crisis, i would rather take it out on me physically, rather than dealing with it emotionally. So i cut, cry and let it out of my system and then im back to normal Sahibah. After i cut, its a sigh of relief, its not exactly happiness but its a little joy knowing ive dealt with it and i’ll be okay soon. Its my inner demon smiling. I know it sounds a little deranged and creepy as hell but thats how it is for me. This is raw, real, self harm. A couple of hours later, the regret kicks in. The demonic, dark trance i was in is gone and normal Sahibah re appears again looking at herself in the mirror thinking, “man i really need to throw that knife away”. You cant shower for a while, you cant move whatever body part you cut, you always have to cover up and hide yourself and it hurts like a bitch. But you have to live and deal with the decision you made.

So thats the process for me, from thinking about cutting to covering up at the end. I have reached out for help and im so proud to say i’ve been self harm free for 6 months! The thing to remember is that you dont have to fall in a spriral of addiction like me, there are people willing to help.

  • Talk to your GP–  When you visit your GP you might discover that your self harm is a sign of a disorder that you need help with for example, depression or anxiety. Getting help as early as you can will help to minimise negative long term effects. You might also need injury treatment as everyone uses different ways to self harm, its not always a knife.
  • Reach out to Self harm organisations/charities– Please make use of these, if you feel like you need to talk to someone new about your issues, or you need urgent help. These organisations are dedicated to helping people who suffer from self harm so please reach out. I cant stress how important it is to let your anger/frustration/sadness whatever it is you feel out in ANOTHER WAY, so please have a read through these websites, read their blogs and give them a call and i 100% promise you, you will get the help you need.
  • http://www.selfharm.co.uk
  • http://www.youngminds.org.uk/self-harm
  • http://www.mind.org.uk
  • Distract yourself – What helped me was to channel my anger out in another way and to not reach for my knife. Believe it or not, i took up boxing for a short time and breaking small things like a pen or tearing up paper, anything to take my mind away from cutting.

This is a very difficult topic for me to talk about. Its something i really dont like sharing, its my dark little secret that i keep to myself. I’ve always kept my online image in control, and not really sharing much about my personal life. Once you start to reveal another side of you, i feel your online image starts to shred and people start to look at you in a different way. That is something i want to avoid. I dont want to be seen as THAT girl. Im human and i have an addiction that im dealing with and thats simply it. 

So thats why i feel that there isnt much awareness about Self harm online. If everyone else, like me keeps this dark side always hidden and never talking about it, then where and how will we ever get better?

I’ve met the most beautiful of beautiful people covered in scars and it breaks my heart thinking its such a hidden topic. More needs to be done to deal with it and a lot more conversations about self harm need to happen!

I think one important point to take away is not to put yourself really down afterwards. I have permanent scars but i look at them and i feel proud. It reminds me of the struggle i went through and i treat them as if they’re battle scars. One day in the future, if i hopefully get rid of this addiction i’ll look at my scars and remember the person i used to be.

If you suspect anyone who may be struggling with this, then please share this post with them. It would mean the world to me knowing ive helped someoneā¤. As always, if you need someone to talk to im always free for a chat and will do my best to help

See you in my next post!

Love from Sahibah x