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Author Topic: How to say No, thanks  (Read 6404 times)
Sr.Kathy
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« on: Jun 07, 2008 02:01 AM »


As salaamu alaykum
Hmm... can't seem to find a satisfactory reply for my son to give. Eighth grade celebration is next week. It is part dance, part carnival. My son promises me he won't go to the dance part, so I am letting him go to the year end of middle school celebration.

Now the girls are asking him to go to the dance. What reply won't crush a girl, give her a complex for life, or send her into therapy when he rejects her invitation?
He says these responses are not good-"My mom won't let me date," "My religion won't let me dance with you." "I just want to hang out with the guys."
Boo Hoo... I still remember (pre Muslim days) the guy's name who turned me down... and it took me years before I got the guts again! he just said "no."

Any suggestions of a reply that will let her skip away happily after he rejects her invitation?

"Allah surely knows the warmth of every teardrop... " Jaihoon
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« Reply #1 on: Jun 07, 2008 04:15 AM »

Wa alaikum as salaam.

Since we must always be polite  yet firm (even in instances when we don't want to be polite - must keep reminding myself of that) the only simple and polite thing I can think of is for him to simply say "No thank you/thanks; I'm only going to the carnival" or something to that effect and be certain to use a proper tone; it's the tone in which "no" is said that causes the "hurt" feelings.  There is no need to go into the long string of reasons because that will not sink in; although it should be known to his classmates already that he is Muslim so it's a mystery as to why the girls are even asking - other than they just don't want to get it I suppose.

Fa'izah
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« Reply #2 on: Jun 07, 2008 07:10 AM »

salams,

interesting... we had a girl's sleepover at the mosque and they were about 8-13 and we had an "anonymous" niqabisis q&a and one of the questions was "a boy asked me to go out with him, what should i do (and i like him)" !! Lips Sealed Shocked and our consensus was kind of to smile and say "no, i'm sorry, thanx for asking i'm really flattered, but i don't date". they kind of get the idea after that. if they ask more about Why then you can get into the whole religion thing, but it's usually best put like that.
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« Reply #3 on: Jun 07, 2008 03:20 PM »

why should they say that they're flatterred. it's kind of not flattering.

i remember just saying "no" and scowling.  and you know what? sometimes you don't have to offer explanations or make the other person happy.  she doesn't need to skip away... she just needs to get the message that he doesn't date.

harsh? not really... there's no excuse that will NOT break her heart... and heartbreak is a natural part of life...
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« Reply #4 on: Jun 07, 2008 03:21 PM »

Ali told me that if he says he doesn't date- this would make him look gay.
I do remember ( pre muslim days) when a guy said a similar thing - I figured he was gay. It wasn't until i asked him why- was when i found out he was a strong Christian.
From some High school Muslim guys I have heard this more than once.
We know what lines will work for us as girls... now to convince my son that even tho the line sounds absurd to him- it will work.

I have found that our Muslim girls are in dangerous territory. Conversations over heard, notebooks left behind, comments made... they are struggling and we have to address these situations. Mom's at our mosque just have their heads in the sand. The teenagers' teacher have strongly recommended someone have a talk about this situation and they agreed- if it was the teacher (one who grew up in India and went from dads home to husbands home) who would teach them. She made it very clear that she had no clue about what the girls are going through and recommended me to speak to them- but no- they were to scared about what i may say to them.

"Allah surely knows the warmth of every teardrop... " Jaihoon
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« Reply #5 on: Jun 08, 2008 07:07 PM »

salam

I think Sr. Faizah's suggestion is sound. If the girls asks further than he can do the whole, my relgion doesnt permit dating and my mother will come for you Shocked... Ok perhaps leave out that last part.

The broken hearts thing, it's unavoidable, he can do it gently as above, once he makes his position clear I should think he'd be OK for a while till he moves to the next school or whatever.

I dont even want to think about this stage, I was very advantaged to attend a single sex school with regards this, and we dont have proms and what not thank heavens.


Wassalaam

And when My servants question thee concerning Me, then surely I am nigh. I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he crieth unto Me. So let them hear My call and let them trust in Me, in order that they may be led aright. Surah 2  Verse 186
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« Reply #6 on: Jun 08, 2008 07:58 PM »

salams,

interesting... we had a girl's sleepover at the mosque and they were about 8-13 and we had an "anonymous" niqabisis q&a and one of the questions was "a boy asked me to go out with him, what should i do (and i like him)" !! Lips Sealed Shocked and our consensus was kind of to smile and say "no, i'm sorry, thanx for asking i'm really flattered, but i don't date". they kind of get the idea after that. if they ask more about Why then you can get into the whole religion thing, but it's usually best put like that.


i agree things like explaining religion can be very ...tricky especially in western society a smile and sorry no thanks would have to be the best option

When the world pushes you to your knees, you are in the perfect position to pray

Be Yourself beautiful, and you will find the world full of beauty
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« Reply #7 on: Jun 09, 2008 03:04 AM »

salaam

I thnk no thanks would kind of hurt, I think it would be nicer to add that it doesnt have anything to do with them but 'my religon doesnt allow dating as it is not unknown.. I rememeber girls in middle school who werent allowed to date because their parents didnt allow it till they turn eighteen I believe. and our neighbors who are devout christians werent allowed either.
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« Reply #8 on: Jun 09, 2008 03:06 AM »

or if one thinks religion is complicated, i dont understand why he cant mention that 'his mom wont allow him to go' its cute when a guy listens to his mom then can come to whatever conclusion they want for the reason of not allowing thmselves
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« Reply #9 on: Jun 09, 2008 03:19 AM »


Oh geez

I just thought ofsomething funny

tell your son to say
"I'm not of marrying age, but please feel free to send my parents your biodata, when you wouldlike to be considered"
 HAHAHA

ok maybe not a reasonable response but made me giggle a bit

Nadiyya hijabisis

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Be Yourself beautiful, and you will find the world full of beauty
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« Reply #10 on: Jun 09, 2008 03:43 PM »

Assalamo elikuim
I agree with Sr.Faizah's reply and Sr.Justone.
My son had the end of 8 grade celebration dance/party two weeks ago. He didnt go. He asked me if he could just go to hang out with his friends, but I asked him that he let me know if that would be approperiate since everybody else would be dancing and he wont ? After thinking about it he decided not to go  (In my moment of I am very reasonable/approachable mom , I let me decide this and Alhamdullah he decided what I wanted him to Smiley).
He is/was pretty well known in his middle school (mostly known as a witty person), has been invited to infinite numbers of birthday parties etc but he has always decline. And I guess being brown Muslim does help since it shows that you already are different Smiley.
Best of luck Sr.Kathy, I guess the tough years are here for us moms Smiley
Wasalam
tq
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« Reply #11 on: Jun 09, 2008 05:11 PM »

I thnk no thanks would kind of hurt, I think it would be nicer to add that it doesnt have anything to do with them but 'my religon doesnt allow dating as it is not unknown..

that's a good point blackrose, and true a lot of parents don't allow their kids to date until a certain age. i wonder what orthodox christian children say?
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« Reply #12 on: Jun 09, 2008 05:58 PM »

We have a lot of Othodox Christians- and yes they can't 'dance.' However the parents do let them go to the carnival part as I plan on letting my son. Will he dance? I doubt it. Never the less he will be tempted all his life- might as well start conditioning him this way. This is why I am saying yes.
If he does dance... I am sure his guilt will stay with him.
He missed Jummah prayer last week to go to his class amusment park end of year trip.
He got robbed and lost all his money and cell phone. I asked him if he thought it was a punishment. Is it? I don't know... but the day wasn't such a good time after all.

"Allah surely knows the warmth of every teardrop... " Jaihoon
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« Reply #13 on: Jun 09, 2008 07:30 PM »

salam

Ali is right...every guy, in junior high, high school, college and beyond will tell you that if you say you don't date you will be considered uhh...not straight..not just by the girl he rejects but by his male peers. Guys always taunt one another about that stuff...

and geez, if a guy said "because my mom won't let me" or something to that effect. That would be even worse! That's just asking for a lifetime of ridicule and worse even....plus, saying that only reinforces a stereotype that we practice our deen because it is tradition or because our parents tell us to. In this society people don't understand the concept of birr-ul-waalidayn...

It's true that whatever you say after no thanks/sorry etc probably won't register for the person if they feel really rejected, but a brief disclaimer about the religion reason won't hurt. Who knows, maybe some of it registers, and perhaps it even plants of seed of daw'ah for all we know. Sweeten up the bad news with a compliment or flattery and you've done all that you can do...

salam

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« Reply #14 on: Jun 09, 2008 08:01 PM »

salam

How old is Ali now? Is he likely to actually dance or would he be far too self conscious and feel daft even thinking about it??

Wouldnt complimenting the girl be a whole new minefield? If other people say its against their religion to date then surely Ali's reason will be accepted.

Growing up I found I used to get a run of bad luck if I deliberately skipped prayers and stuff, I think it serves as a gentle reminder. Poor Ali tho, I'm so sorry he was robbed.

Oh dear I dont want to think about this <shoves head firmly in sand>


Wassalaam

And when My servants question thee concerning Me, then surely I am nigh. I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he crieth unto Me. So let them hear My call and let them trust in Me, in order that they may be led aright. Surah 2  Verse 186
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« Reply #15 on: Jun 09, 2008 08:28 PM »

Quote
Wouldnt complimenting the girl be a whole new minefield?

Yup, I don't think thats a good idea, cos girls and guys interpret things differently ... So yea some things are better left unsaid Lips Sealed

Btw, I like all the pink hearts Wink


"Do not treat people with contempt, nor walk insolently on the earth. Allah does not love the arrogant or the self-conceited boaster. Be modest in your bearing and subdue your voice, for the most unpleasant of voices is the braying of the ass." [The Holy Qur'an, Surah Luqman - 31:18-19]
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« Reply #16 on: Jun 09, 2008 08:44 PM »

Wouldnt complimenting the girl be a whole new minefield? If other people say its against their religion to date then surely Ali's reason will be accepted.

I meant something equivalent to the "I can't shake your hand but it is great pleasure meeting you" line that some ppl say when they decline shaking someone's hand of the opposite gender. Didn't mean like going all poetic and all Wink
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« Reply #17 on: Jun 09, 2008 10:47 PM »

It's interesting about the dawah aspect. I know our former mosque secretary, an older african-american convert sister, many years ago in high school heard a boy do the athan over the loud speaker one day and she then developed a crush on him after that, but he was always so good. And that sparked her first interest in islam although she didn't follow up on it until 10-15 years later she still remembered it!!!
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« Reply #18 on: Jun 10, 2008 04:01 AM »

He will be 14 in a couple of weeks.
I am not worried about him dancing- I am pretty confident he understands why it is wrong and won't do it. (I am hopefully not sticking my hand in the sand)
But just to make sure... I have seen him dance at home and have told him he would embarrass himself if he danced like that in front of a girl...ok ok... it might be a lie...but just in case the moral pressure doesn't work... i will go for peer humiliation....Bad mama...

Updates.. in case you are interested.
Girl #1- found out she used to be girl friend of one of his buddies. I told him about the cardinal rule of dating a friends ex. So he declined using this reasoning. This worked.
Girl #2- When she asked him again today, he said no because he was afraid his mother would beat him up if he did. So apparently his mother saying she won't let him date is humiliating- but the fear of being pulverized is accepted... who knew?
Girl #3- was not in school today... to be continued...

He has to learn to say no... our Muslim boys are great catches and I fear this is only the beginning. Women/ girls are very aggressive today. I was aggressive then...and I was a 'good' girl.

I should have posted this topic in a neutral section- i would like to hear from more bros.

"Allah surely knows the warmth of every teardrop... " Jaihoon
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« Reply #19 on: Jun 10, 2008 04:31 AM »

salam

Sr. Kathy, your post made me laugh.

all the best to you and Ali, insha'Allah. 

wassalam
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« Reply #20 on: Jun 16, 2008 12:56 PM »

okay how about... "i'm not allowed to date"

i've used that a number of times....
i'm not allowed to drink
i'm not allowed to date
i'm not allowed to smoke
i'm not allowed to eat that nasty looking piece of meat on your barbecue grill

then people think you're really "sheltered" for about 2 minutes and give you this look of "poor girl"..some of them will offer a bewildered... "but..why not?"  and then he can explain it by discussing the modern-day existential dilemma...confuse everyone and then straight attend the dance in a thobe.  i think that's a brilliant idea Smiley

but first off: he's 14!!! even if dating was acceptable in Islam... at 14 a lot of non-muslims are NOT allowed to date (by their parents).  you kind of need to prepare him... this is just the beginning.  it gets REALLY bad in high school. try prom night....

he can't NOT break everyone's heart.  he also can't NOT get involved in the school social scene. the whole gay thing... i think many of us have gone through it - some of it is unavoidable... and kids can be very cruel up until you hit university - hey something to look forward to.


best of luck
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« Reply #21 on: Jun 16, 2008 04:31 PM »

Aslamualaikum

Maybe its time to homeschool him now:)

Actually I met this family where the girls went to regular public school till fifth grade. Then for middle school and high school their parents homeschooled. I thought thats an excellent idea considering many Muslim parents tend to do it the other way around, but I think the public elementary school is actually pretty good. (Infact I just might transfer my kid from Islamic school to public, just might neway) Sixth grade is the time when people start bringing guns to school (yes its true , many parents never knw. bc nonone shoots but in school u always hear boutit) and piercings start in all sorts of places.. and gays and public smooching starts to happen ect ect..

So I think when sixth grade starts its best to send the child to Islamic school or homeschool, (both have proved to have better education then public school).

And thats not sheltering anyone, you cannot shelter your kids from everything (stuff will happen everywhere) , but it is protecting in a moderate way.

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