Dec 18, 2009 - for muslim women    10 Comments

Why you shouldn’t take off your Hijab! – Encouragement for Hijabis

Encouragement for Hijabis


Why you shouldn’t stop wearing Hijab…




I always meant to write this article as a part 2 to the article I wrote titled “Sisters taking off Hijab (on Facebook).” But I received so much hate after that article that I thought I’d back off and never touch the subject again! Looking over logs to the blog however I’ve seen over and over again phrases like ‘thinking of taking off hijab’, ‘reasons to wear hijab’, ‘proof of hijab’, ‘I want to take my hijab off’ and so on. It’s kind of sad if they’re clicking on that article and just reading more reasons to take it off! instead of things that could help them.

So here are the common things that people say when they want to take off Hijab and some things that I tell myself that may help you:

(think of it as the Naf’s arguing with each other ;))

*Note that this is for those wearing Hijab currently and thinking of taking it off, not others. NOT for those who have already taken it off, are thinking of wearing it, or are not able to wear it yet – this doesn’t apply to you and that’s a whole other article… maybe a part 3-18? ;))

**Btw as an aside, some sisters who don’t wear Hijab have been some of the best Muslims I know, but the below still holds.

-I don’t think Hijab is obligatory.

Hijab is obligatory (Fard) according to all 4 schools of thought. There is consensus among all the scholars that it is part of being a Muslim. Just like Salah in Islam, not performing it is sinful, but not doing it out of laziness or weakness does not make you a non-Muslim. The only problem is when we say Salah is not part of Islam or that Hijab is not part of Islam. Both are Fard items and we should be careful not to go against all the normative teachings of Islam in this way. There are people out there who claim that it’s not obligatory (who also claim they are scholars) and even tons of laypeople who think they can interpret everything on their own, but there are tons of rebuttals and refutations of those so look those up when you have time. If you need detailed proof of why Hijab is obligatory look up an Imam or scholar near you :)

(The rest of the information here is predicated on the last one. If someone doesn’t believe it’s obligatory then there’s really no point in wearing it, is there!)

(Also as an aside, sometimes we can feel a lot of guilt and pressure about not wearing it so when we see an “opinion” that we don’t have to, we might want to latch onto that or try to make our own interpretations. This might even be a wholly unconscious process on our parts as well. So it’s good to be careful and refer Islamic Aqeedah issues to knowledgeable sisters and brothers. Not doing something is one thing, but declaring something not part of Islam is another!)

-Hijab is from the Persians and cultural, not really a part of Islam.

Again, it’s good if you look up the proofs of why it’s obligatory in Islam. While Islam does allow a lot of leeway for culture, to make something obligatory in Islam is something else. Islamic law takes precedence over culture. Ask a knowledgable Imam or scholar in your area for more info.

-What’s wrong with just being modest?

Everyone’s opinion on modesty is subjective. One girl might believe jeans and a shirt is modest, while another might believe a knee-length skirt is modest and another might think covering the essentials on a beach is modest! Again Islam came with guidelines from our Creator. If we believe in our Creator, we know that He has sent down Guidance out of His Knowledge of how human beings act or think. Hijab is good for society and for us. The actual exact reason for Hijab is really not known to us. There could be many reasons (physical, spiritual, psychological) and us thinking that ‘it’s just about modesty’ might not be doing justice to why it was made Fard for us.

-I’m getting more attention from guys/men wearing Hijab, so why should I wear it?

It’s true that in the West, Muslim women get more attention, stares and so on from people while wearing Hijab (sometimes in Muslim countries too!), but in truth Hijab is not there to cover us up and make us invisible. One of the things mentioned in the Quran about Hijab is “so that they may be recognised and not annoyed.” Quran 33:59

-I was doing Hijab for Allah before but now I’m doing it for other/cultural reasons.

This can happen to a lot of us. We start out wearing Hijab for the right reasons but then down the line our intentions can change and we might be doing it for the people around us, or peer-pressure or even for a husband or any number of wrong reasons. What I’ve learned from scholars is even if your intention changes or if you don’t feel like wearing it anymore, you should continue. Just like if you feel like you’re not getting anything in your Salahs and want to stop, you shouldn’t stop. Just continue and keep asking Allah for guidance. InshaAllah eventually the sweetness of faith will come back to you and will make it a beneficial rewardable thing for you. At least you are lifting the ‘obligation’ from you by continuing to do it even if you feel you’re not getting anything from it.

- I don’t feel like I’m a good enough Muslim to wear it anymore.

Were we ever perfect Muslims? Will we ever be a perfect Muslim? No I don’t think so. We are always striving to reach our potential as worshipers of God. Sometimes we aren’t so good, sometimes our Iman is low. That doesn’t mean we should end all the good things we are doing currently.

--I’m misrepresenting Islam by wearing it because I still do bad things.

I asked a Shaykh this question and he mentioned that, first of all, this a noble and good thing to feel. We don’t want to misrepresent Islam. But no one is perfect, he said. We should do it and try our best to be a good example. In something else we might weigh the probable consequences and harms but Hijab is obligatory. It’s just like if someone says I’m not good enough to pray, so they don’t pray! A general principle in Islam is that we shouldn’t give up all of, from that which is good. In other words, do whatever good you can do. Allah will help us.

- I feel ugly wearing it and need a boost in self-esteem.

We all know how you feel. We have our bad-hijab days too :D While taking off the hijab might give one a rush of feeling ‘pretty’ or ‘modern’, true self-esteem comes from valuing your inner self. Let’s stop being dependent on our outside and find our true inner confidence.

-No one will marry me while I’m wearing it.

Yeah I feel you. But there are good brothers out there who are specifically looking for a wife that wears Hijab. And take a look at all the Hijabi girls you know who are married. So don’t worry ;-)

-Muslims expect me to be a really good person.

And that’s a bad thing? j/k :) Are you saying it’s ok to be a bad person then if you don’t wear it? It’s true people will judge you if you wear it, and some people will judge you if you don’t wear it. In the end, what’s most important is what is pleasing to God, not to people.

-I’ll wear it again later when I’m a better Muslim.

Again, this feels like an excuse to just not wear it. Why not continue to wear it and try to be a better Muslim instead?

- I feel like I’m losing my sense of self as a woman and my femininity.

You can still be your own woman and person wearing Hijab, if not more so. People still see you. You don’t need to lose your femininity. You can still look feminine, clean and nice wearing Hijab. Hijab isn’t meant to hide you from society. It is a way of making society function with respect. You don’t have to feel like you are wearing a black sack everyday! There are so many lovely styles and ways to wear Hijab. You can choose a look that is right for you and is still Halal.

-I think I’m just as good a Muslim without it.

Really? So we’re just as good a Muslim if we don’t fast in Ramadan or we don’t give Zakat or don’t do other Fard things? We’re just as good a Muslim if we don’t do even recommended things like charity or Sunnah prayers? Doesn’t make sense! :) The more good you do, recommended and obligatory things, the better Muslim you are, not the opposite.

- I just don’t feel like it.

I’ve actually heard this from some girls. Well who can argue with that eh? :)

- I just want a change.

See above.

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In conclusion, I know putting on the Hijab is a huge step and changes your whole life. Believe it from someone who started late in life. I know there are some who rush into it but didn’t realize how hard it was going to be. They felt that something. That indefinable Inaaya to try to be a better Muslim and it gave them the motivation to start. It is a struggle, no doubt about it. Whether you’ve been wearing it 6 months or 6 years.

It’s not the end of the world if you take it off and yes you still are a good Muslim and can work towards being a better one. But try inshaAllah. Hijab is a good thing sent down from Allah for our own benefit. Use it as a stepping stone to becoming a better, more interesting, more spiritual, stronger, Muslim human being.

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Things to try if you’re feeling bad about wearing Hijab:

-       Review your knowledge about Hijab and your intentions about it.

-       Talk to a knowledgeable sister that you look up to about it.

-       Find some new hobbies and interests that help make you a better person on the inside.

-       Go to the Mosque for a Halaqah or Jumah and just be with Muslims.

-       Go out to dinner or hang out with other sisters who wear Hijab and bring up the topic.

-       Try a new Hijab style or different types of Halal clothes. You can find plenty of ‘hijab styling’ videos on youtube that are really nice like these ones from a sister: http://www.youtube.com/Amenakin

-       Have a girl’s party and dress up and wear whatever scandalous clothes and hair designs you like.

-       Find more ways to up your Imaan.

-       More ideas?


Next Week: Top 10 benefits to wearing Hijab  ‘Till then sistahs…Toodles!

10 Comments

  • Ok so I am a 29 year old single muslim female who has been wearing hijab for the last 6 months.

    But I want to stop wearing it. Part of it probably does have to do with low emaan. But I think mainly it had to do with the fact that I dint really think about hijab properly before and put it on impulsively at a time when I was practising more, and the people around me were too. They still are, but for me, I dont love it anymoe. I just dont want to wear it and I dont really know why.

    Inside a number of reasons go around in my head. I dont feel like myself anymore. I look and feel like an old granny when I wear it (ok im 29 but im not ancient!) I just dont feel confident and comfortable. In addition, I am not praying all my salah all the time and therefore my emaan is definiteky lacking. I just cant find the motivation to get up and pray. Its so annoying. I try to do good deeds but then I remember how salah will be the first action judges on the day of judgement and i try but i get lazy and still i cant.

    I sat itikaaf this year in ramadhan, and even then I felt like a hypocrite cos half the time whilst I was fasting before I did itikaaf (only 1 day) i didnt even pray.

    I also work in a corporation and again, I have lost my confidence. I guess I am too self concious. I have always been a little shy and nervous so wearing hijab where i stick out like a sore thumb makes me feel self concious.

    I feel like mentally i have so many esteem issues and Im a bit messed up and taking off the hijab will help me go back to how I used to be when I didnt wear it. I was comfortable and happy within myself. I didnt outwardly express my faith in those days although I did pray and now I have out the hijab on it feels like an anticlimax and now what.

    I dont think I wore it for the right reasons. And now im suffering. Thing is, if I take it off… its just as hard cos u have people raising eyebrows, they will be asking questions and more to the point the non muslims at work will prob feel satisfied that ive rjected the scarf.

    maybe one day I can put it back on… but in a way I dont belive in it either. I think it is more imporatnt to have a good clean heart with good intentions that wear a scarf. Some people say more you cover it brings youmore closer to allah. but i dont hink that is always true.

    Will allah swt really punish us for not wearing a scarf?? i dont know if I beluve that,

    But my problem is, if my emaan is weak now, then how will it be after I take it off. I know what I am like… i get bored easily. I dunno, im a bit messed up and confused right now.

    I dont know what to do… im close to taking it off but tt the same time i dont want to either cos i dont wanna be a quitter but again maybe i am more concerned with what people would say if I took it off.

    Plus so many sisters felt inspired by me and my sister when we started wearing hijab – id feel like i let them down and if they then stopped wearing it cos of me i would hate myself. one sis who started waring it recently feels uncomfortabvle and i been encouraging her with good stuff but dee down inside i know i feel the same as her.

    its hard man. why did i out it on? why didnt i think about it properly?? im a stupid dumbass i really am.

  • i just want to say what i have beeen going throw., i wore the hijab 3 years ago and was totally my choice, my mum and my sister dont wear it and right now am living by myself, i started to find it really hard to wear it and its like there issomething inside me that wants me to take it off but at the same time i dont really want to take it off. i feel really bad and i cant get to a decission being torn between these two, everyday passes i will say i am taking it off tomorrow, i actually took it off few times but no one i know saw me so i had it back on again, but what i feel that people expect from you much more, when i came to the decision to wear it it was because it is not going to make any diiference in my life i will still be me but what i have noticed was the opposite people and espically muslims expect you to be a good person but what if you are not it makes you feel bad, another is that i feel i its not the right time for me and i wanna take it off but i will start wearing it soon when i will be a better muslim since there is a lot of things that i do but i am not supposed to be doing when i wear the jugab, but most of all i just want to take it off to go out with my hair, i know its bad but i dont know what to do i tried everything

  • Hey all , i am in a deep paradox , i can’t see the end of the road , and i really need help !!

    I am 25 years , and i’m from Egypt. I decided getting veiled in November 2008 after a long struggle with my daddy mainly as he didnt so much approve of it. I took my time , and i wore long sleeved shirts for a whole month without the veil , then i put it on on November 13th 2008 , i simply went to work putting it without telling my parents.

    In the very early begining , i put it on cuz i always knew it was the right thing to do , PLUS at that time last year , someone convinced me that it’s surely the right thing to do , i thought about it a lot b4 making my decision, and i was very happy and satisfied with myself and with God in the begining.

    Basically , i did it as a step nearer to God , keeping in mind that i follow all prayers since i was 10 years old , i used to fast many days other than Ramadan , and i read Quor2an with tajweed ( all that way long ago before putting the veil on )

    Now , everything has changed dramatically !!! After a year of being veiled , i doscovered that am still the same , i aint any closer to God. Conversly , now i dun read Quor2an anymore , and i feel i lost the core of the veil. I feel empty, and i am totally unsatisfied with the way i look , as i used to have remarkable hair before the veil , but yet , i used to dress modestly even before the veil.

    I feel so depressed , unsatisfied , empty , demotivated ( thats cuz of other aspects in my life ) but the veil is playing an important role here , mainly i HATE my look now with it , plus i feel empty , i dun have the heart anymore to go on with it.

    I am so confused , cuz i struggled in the very early begining to wear it , now i cant take it anymore.

    I’d really appreciate it if anyone cud help me out , or at least relieve me.

    Thanks a lot , Al Salam Alaikum !

  • I live in a small community in North Dakota. The majority of the populace is Luthern with a few others thrown in. A few months ago I saw two women in our local Wal-mart. They were both wearing Hijab. People in the store were staring, whispering and even going so far as to change direction to avoid walking close to them. I was so embarassed to be a part of this community at that moment, I can’t put it into words. Williston is usually known for its welcoming attitude and to see members of my community acting in such a blatant manner made my sick. I wanted to approach them and say something, but I was afraid they would be offended or simply embarrassed that I was making a big deal out of something they do as a show of faith. I want to say that I believe women who are Muslim should never feel ashamed of wearing a Hijab. To me it is a wonderful thing to see. So often in our society, people talk about religion and belief but do not take the time to actually follow the tenants of their own religion. To see Muslim women who are not afraid to adhere to their beliefs, even in the face of such horrid predjudice, makes me want to be a better person myself.

  • Thanks Serena those are kind words for all of us :)

  • Assalamualaikum, I am from Indonesia, but sorry that I am not good at speaking English. This article was very good and valuable. I am very concerned with the lives of women in my country who claim a Muslim, but very difficult to understand the goodness and virtue hijab. I hope God gives guidance to them, Amen.

  • Assalamualaikum, I am from Indonesia, but sorry that I am not good at speaking English. Alhamdulillah I found a site with articles that are very good for my life and family. I wish all my family can wear the hijab in everyday life.

  • Assalaamualaikum sisters,
    I put on the hijaab in my final year at Uni..I remember the very moment just before I put it on, there was something tugging at my conscience ‘go on just do it, it’s the right thing to do’..and then negative whispers of how everyone was going to react towards me and how I would now have to be perhaps a bit more careful with the way I represented myself..I came up with all sorts of silly excuses and then it simply hit me. I wasn’t putting on the hijaab for anyone else but Allah, and how the hell would I justify my superficial excuses on the Day of Qiyaamah when Allah SWT will ask me, what have you done for me? So yes without further hesitation, I did it. My thinking here was that I’d deal with the social consequences as they came..I just had that question that Allah would ask me at the back of my head. Of course life changes when you put on the hijaab, that beautiful hair is gone and suddenly you’re no longer getting the usual attention that you’re used too. Once rather popular, some strings of acquaintences go out of their way to avoid you..they just didn’t see it coming. Well thankfully at the time, I simply didn’t care. Funnily enough, once everyone had figured out that I hadn’t morphed into an alien being, my popularity levels shot up again. Did I care? Hell no. These individuals clearly were no good for me but I knew that this would be a good avenue for dawah, and so I continue our friendship.
    But sisters I understand where you are coming from. The hijaab is certainly a struggle. It has so many benefits (most of which we are not consciously aware of by the will of Allah)..when you walk down the street and you recognise a sister, you exchange glances and smiles and hopefully a salaam, there is this sense of unity. Something I never felt before putting on the hijaab. Of course there are the suspicious looks from non-muslims, but that just spurs me on to show them that I truly am a decent person, I talk, chat and laugh with the old on the buses..making sure that when they leave, I know they’ll see the hijaab differently. The hijaab is merely a strong statement of telling the world that you are a muslim, part of the ummah. We’re not perfect people, the hijaab does not suddenly super-fy you into a super-muslim. I still struggle with my salaah. But the hijaab simply guides you and protects you. More amazingly..it also can inspire others as some of you have mentioned already.
    Now let me ask you this..will the shaytaan prefer to help you take that hijaab off your head? Or would it prefer to meddle with the muslims that already perhaps drink or do drugs? My dear sisters, the hijaab is such a beautiful thing that reminds you of your creator–> the shaytaan would rather meddle with you. And so it will whisper and whisper..it’s very easy to go through life attributing your lack of self-confidence and poor state of mind to simply wearing the hijaab. I can most assuredly tell you that that is shaytaan’s work, taking the hijaab off will not miraculously make you a confident person. The confidence you seek comes from within.
    With the current media situation at the moment in which is Islam is mocked day in day out, and the hijaab is at the forefront of the kuffaars ammunition. I ask you, would you rather not keep it on and fight for your deen?

    Sisters, we need to strengthen ourselves, I speak to me more knowing that everyday I’m not doing enough. I think the best advice I can share with you is this: purify yourself through your actions and learn to control your desires. When you give money in charity..give more than you want too. When you eat you favourite foods..eat less than you want too. If you’re rushing salaah for that fav tv programme, don’t rush that one time. If you really love that eyeliner on your eyes…put a little less on. And if you adore Johnny Depp..ignore him for a little while. In these little pockets of time, pick up that Islamic book you’ve been meaning to read or enrol yourself on an Islamic course. The more you do this..slowly by slowly..I promise you’ll see that the little things in life that you thought you cared for, doesn’t mean anything to you anymore..and then you’ll see. This life really truly is superficial.
    Oh and one more thing, surround yourself with good people..if you don’t pray salaah regularly..go hang out with that sister who does..before you know it, when she goes to pray, so will you! The power of social influence is unbelievable, it’s the thing that can make you feel horrible about yourselves, or make you feel wonderful, so I urge you surround yourself with good muslims who remember Allah SWT on a daily basis.
    Oh hang on, another thing, the Quran tells us, Islam is for the intellects, people of knowledge. It is mandatory on us to learn more about our deen in order to really understand it. I promise you, once you’re on the path to learn, you’ll never turn your back.

    And the MOST important thing. Making dua and constant repentence, if you truly believe in Alllah SWT, remember that it is HE who holds the answers for your question. You must ask Him sincerely..and even if you sin and sin again, repent, and repent again, surely Allah will listen to your duas.

    Goodness I really went off on one, I guess my point being is that the hijaab is truly a catalyst in your life, lose it, and you lose your drive to further yourself to find genuine contentment with who you are and you will lose yourself. I sincerely hope you all understand what I mean…sorry for the rambling. May Allah help you and I on our path of knowledge in Islam. May Allah forgive us.

  • the first time i wore hijab, i took off the hijab, with the intension of wearing it in the future when my iman was stronger/i also said im taking a step bk to move forward again, but then one of the sisters is right, its only an excuse not to wear it…… and instead of feeling confident i felt very low in self esteem and extremely lost, i was more tempted than ever to sin, and believe me i started going down hill….. what im trying to say is taking off the hijab is not the solution!!!

    im now wearing it again, the same unsure, uncertain feelings are coming bk, i want to take it off, but then i remind myself of how lost i felt the last time i took it off,

    just like most things in life, for instance exams….now that wernt made to be easy, u have to work towards it, to get perfect results….i guess the same idea can be said abt hijab, no-one said it was going to be easy..perhaps its gna be a longg struggle(not trying to disencourage you here)but believe me stick to it…STRUGGLE IT OUT!!!!lets start making dua to make us stronger…lets start praying to be ourselves….to create a positive identity….lets start feeling beautiful…lets stop caring sooo muchh abt superficial desires!!!! lets stop being afraid of REJECTION AND IGNORANCE!!! remember why we’ve been created and remember who we’re going back to!!! my heart and understanding really does go out to hijabi’s who are struggling to be hijabis because i am very much in the sdame boat!!!! but reading the blogs and comments has made me abit stronger………THE ADVICE GIVEN ABOVE IS TO MYSELF FIRST!!!so please dont be offended…i really do pray that the sisters feeling like this and myself willl reach a confident and comfortable stage and grow to love the hijab soon Ameen….

    a big thankyou to sister Jannah for her posts of encouragement and to all the other sisters that have shared their experiences and thoughts!!!

    WEEE CAN DOO THIS SISTERS…MORE FAITH AND LESS NEGATIVITY!!!

    XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

  • Asalamualaikum,
    I am 15 and i started wearing my hijab wen my mom did. But when i go to my friends house i dont wear it. But wen i go to school i wear it. So my mom is like if you are going to wear it at places then u wont wear it at toher places, there is no point of me wearing it. I do want to stop because im just not ready and i really didnt think over the transition. But then i do because many people have told me that if you stop then Allah will punish me. I do not know what to do! also i dont know what people will say when they dont see me wearing it anymore. Please Help Me !