“If you took off your hijab, I won’t call you my daughter.”

I had promised myself; as soon as I took off my headscarf, my first job would be to write to this page, but it wasn’t in my destiny. I will be 20 years old in a month and it will be 6 years since I became a hijabi.

We are five siblings and I’m the eldest of them. After my two younger sisters became hijabis, the pressure to be a hijabi on me has doubled. The day before I was veiled, my mother told me that if I wear a headscarf, she will get what I wanted, and the next day my cousin had an engagement party. We are a low-income family, so I didn’t have many clothes. A child’s mind, I wore a headscarf because my mother would buy me a dress. However, I regret it since the first day I went out with a headscarf.

I couldn’t tell anyone in the first years. How could I say it while my family looks at people wearing trousers as dishonorable? This is not the life I want; I want to feel my hair wander in wind. I couldn’t say, “In the streets, girls braid their hair and wear colorful hairpins, I want to be like them.” However, a year ago I told this to my father, while we were in the car; he yelled at me, “You can’t stop doing something that will bring shame to me, can you?” he shouted. Two minutes later he calmed down and said, “Talk to your mother, you can take off your headscarf if she lets you.”

I talked to my mother and she said, “If you took off your headscarf, I won’t call you my daughter.” Months passed and I convinced my mother, she understood me. This time, my father said, “I said so to put you off, who took her headscarf off today would open up their ass tomorrow.”  I realized once again that I couldn’t take my headscarf off. I thought of going to university and take my headscarf off there, but after this time, they never let me to do that.

You know what’s the weirdest? I’m a lesbian – I had the courage to say this here for the first time. While I wanted to spend the rest of my life with a woman, how can I say this to my friends who made fun of the word “lesbian” when they heard about it and my family who said “ God protect us from perverts!”

I really love you; I see the support I haven’t received from anyone thanks to your page. This is the story of my failure, but the more I read the stories you tell about freedom, the more I become happy. I haven’t seen your faces, and I don’t know your names; you are my favorite people in this world. I love you all.

Translator: EsilS.

(Image: Amelie Flechais)

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