I haven’t seen myself in hijab even in my dreams, whereas I was in hijab for nine years.

Hello,

I came across your page in the explore page and I wanted to say some things about my experience. I started wearing hijab in my sophomore year of high school. My family is conservative. They did not put any pressure on me, I wasn’t going to a religious school or anything. I decided to wear the hijab because of the influence of my relatives and friends. I was the only hijabi in my school. The school principal was strict about this. He would get mad at me for wearing hijab in school, but I was strong enough to fight for his. And then I graduated from high school.

I started going to university, I was still wearing hijab. In the second year of university, while most of my friends were still wearing hijab, I decided to not wear it anymore. “Why do I wear it?” I thought, “A person at age 15 does not have the ability to decide.” I knew that if I stopped wearing it my family and other people were going to be mad at me. But it didn’t matter. What mattered was myself. I told my mom first. She talked me out of it but the voice inside of me never went silent. This wasn’t me. This wasn’t the world I wanted to live in, this wasn’t my world.

Two years later I started the last year of university. This time I wasn’t going to ask anyone. I told my mom that I wasn’t wearing hijab anymore. She didn’t believe me. When I returned home, they wanted me to cover my hair. I thought that they would get used to me not wearing the hijab and just like I thought, they got used to it. Even though I’m still careful around them, I’m who I am now, I’m more like myself. I haven’t seen myself in hijab even in my dreams, whereas I was in hijab for nine years.

What I mean is that you should listen to your soul. You should listen to what your heart says. Other people won’t live this life for you, you will. So, live your life the way you want to. Draw your boundaries yourself. You may be 15-20 years old now, but time will pass and you will be 25-30, don’t regret anything. Wearing hijab does not drag you down and so does not wearing it. Live away from other people’s taboos and words. Instead of listening to them, tell them what you want. Don’t let them make your choices for you. Also, please wait at least for your 20s to wear hijab because your feelings and thoughts are changing so fast that your perspective in life will be formed in your 20s. That’s when you can decide. Yours truly.

(Image: Anna Parini)

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