Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Iraqi Relationships

Iraqis must enjoy pain. The have to, because there isn't any other reason for it.
The relationship between males and females in Iraq,is laughable. According to many people, it wasn't always like this though.

I'm not going to try to blame it on the guys completely though...girls in Iraq are paranoid. It was hard enough for me -a girl- to make friends (no, its got nothing to do with my occasionally abrasive personality :P). So guys getting a girlfriend is naturally going to be much more difficult. Generally in our society, girls keep to their family, family are their friends. So breaking into their world, or even getting an iraqi girl to talk about something personal is quite a task. And you honestly wonder why friendship or any type of relationship is difficult between opposite sexes here. Not to mention the mentality that friendship between opposite sexes is impossible. The guys don't help either by being overly predictable and sexist-even if he claims he isn't.

1. No Pain, No Gain:
this relationship is basically a guy and a girl becoming girlfriend and boyfriend. Don't get too excited though, this relationship is usually one sided, and revolves around keeping in touch by phone calls, soppy emails, and the occasional meeting. This type involves constant arguing and falling out. It rarely develops further than the shallow stage, and each side constantly tries to win one over the other. Its basically a power struggle, where each side go through self generated 'heart ache'.
Unfortunatley this type of relationship is the most common in iraqi society.
It usually also involves the girl getting annoyed she's not being showered with attention 24/7, and it involves the guy being permanently pissed due to sexual frustration. May end in marriage if guy's circumstances are to the girl's liking.

2.Sexy Time:
This relationship usually revolves around...well, lust. This is almost the rarest type of relationship (suprise suprise). This relationship is usually initiated by the guy, and rarely involves each side talking to each other normally.
Instead it involves boring sentences spattered across talking about sex, arguing about sex, and eventually having sex.
You iraqi guys should beware though...the girl is prone to having her feelings grow, and then you'll really be screwed when she confesses her love. As soon as she does, iraqi guy will pick up his dishdasha and run faster than you can say 'Commitment Crisis'.
It won't be one of those fun 'no strings attaches relationships' either. The guy will be permanently trying to get the girl in bed, and the girl will be constantly trying to get words of love and romance. Neither really get what they want, and end up secretly harbouring anger towards the other. Though i suppose once issues are resolved anger may turn to passion (?).

3.Familiar Friends:
This relationship is a friendship between iraqi guys and girls. It will be full of hypocrisy as the guy in this relationship will always be judgemental and at times tyrranical. The guy will eventually drop hints at you to stop speaking openly, wear more modest clothes, and learn how to do housework.Its more than probable he'll always nag you on how to pick up girls etc. Though he's only trying to be 'like your brother' and 'advise' you. In other words, the girl is supposed to shut up and listen, and preferably have no opinion of her own, and accept his proud objectification of women. The girl in this relationship will eventually start avoiding the guy, using such excuses as 'people might get the wrong idea about us' etc. But really its because neither side put effort into the relationship..the conversation will almost always revolve around family, jokes, politics etc. Deep conversations? Unlikely.

4.Marry me!
This is a relationship that involves each side shyly getting to know one another. It then follows by underhand glances, and engagement, and then marriage. It mainly involves a lukewarm passion, based on a foundation of appreciation of one another.
At the begining years, neither side will actually know the other, and you'll get a distinct feeling that each person will always withhold a part of their personality from the other. i.e. they won't be able to completely be themselves around the other. As the years of their marriage progresses, they'll know more about each other etc, and live the standard iraqi marriage life.
I suppose planned marriages also fall in this category.

This is the rarest rarest type of relationship between guys and gals. Even rarer than the sex relationship. In this type of relationship, neither guy or girl will have to think about what they're doing with the other..i.e. they can be completely themselves without any barriers. Of course Love exists in different ways, and so the outcome of this relationship also depends on the type of Love involved.
If its the passion roses and rainbows love, then it may result in a loving marriage if each side sacrifices certain things. It depends on each situation as to what will have to be sacrificed. Sometimes everything may be sacrificed, sometimes very little will.
If its not that type of roses love, then it will probably end in the most solid friendship you can ever find, a 'connection' type friendship.
Either way, this relationship is perhaps the nicest in that it lacks the arguing, which is otherwise vastly present in all other iraqi relationships.


Do we need a social revolution? Well, the news flash is that we have had several social revolutions since the war, each worse than the other. Though as a nation, we've never actually managed to have any good social changes...

*feel free to correct me, i am simply just writing what i see (and we all know that our eyes can deceive us...) :)


Anonymous said...

Interesting post Touta, and at times hilarious!

"You iraqi guys should beware though...the girl is prone to having her feelings grow, and then you'll really be screwed when she confesses her love. As soon as she does, iraqi guy will pick up his dishdasha and run faster than you can say 'Commitment Crisis'. "

Hahaha! This is not restricted to Iraq but quite universal I would say. Well, perhaps not the dishdasha part. ;)


JG said...


I think even in societies that are much more open about sexuality there are always major problems, contradictions etc. because as the old cliché goes, "women are from Venus, men are from Mars."

I think the 'no pain, no gain' line fits with almost any kind of man-woman love/relationship. There is always pain. Sometimes it's worth it, sometimes not.

Leonard Cohen described love as "the most ferocious activity we [ie men and women] get involved in"

Never a truer word spoken methinks!

JG said...

Oh, and I agree with Marcus. Change the dishdasha for jeans and a tshirt and it's universal! ;)

pepe said...

Ha, very funny post. How about that situation when people are in a relationship just to have something to do while "nothing better" comes up? I'm sure iraqis are not an exception on that also. Btw, I think you'd like a canadian documentary by Alan Zweig called "I Curmudgeon", there is a segment at

Touta said...

Thanks, glad you enjoyed reading. hmm, i know but iraqi guys deny their commitment problems, all the other men of the world don't.:D

perhaps leonard cohen (haven't heard of him but will research it) has a point- in socieities where women and men are on equal standing, it is relatively successful, however in socieites where it is matriachal or patriachal, the society suffers.
fine, point taken about the universal standard part.:D

thanks, i'm glad you liked reading it. as for the nothing better to do, iraqis have a good point of always having a goal for everything they do. But that type of relationship happens a lot amongst the depressed iraqi teenagers these days.
thanks for the link. :)

JG said...

however in socieites where it is matriachal or patriachal, the society suffers

No doubt. I wasn't suggesting otherwise. Leonard Cohen is an amazing poet, novelist, singer, songwriter, and a very wise and humble man, now aged 75 I think.

Brilliant interview with him here if ever you have the time/inclination to watch it:

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

I'm sorry I missed your Anniversary, Touta. I've been busy, and my computer at home has decided it won't display blogger comments sections anymore. So I haven't had a chance to stop by as often as I used to.

Anyway, Happy Anniversary, a little late. :)

Oh, and I left a comment in the post before this one.

Anonymous said...

you know what!! i tried to be in relation with iraqi girl and american one too, it always end with the dog-cat relation!!
they are fighting each others, dunno if it was my fault or their, or both!!!!

Touta said...

alaa, i really have no hope for the future now :))
if you tried your best to avoid arguing, then its their fault...;)

Anonymous said...

well. it needs days and days of going in circles, all what i can help is my own experiences.. maybe one day we will have the time to talk about that.. otherwise: God bless the internet and msngr :P

Touta said...

days and days?
yumma now i'm worried. :P perhaps there's something outside our control that decides the result of friendships and relationships. :)

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

i tried to be in relation with iraqi girl and american one too, it always end with the dog-cat relation!!
they are fighting each others, dunno if it was my fault or their, or both!!!!

If you were seeing both at the same time, it's no wonder! lol!

Anonymous said...

i cant be with more than one in the same time, wrong and BIG MISTAKE too, it isnt about being a don jwan but no one can control such situation, at least i cant!! anyway, i even tried with a belarussian, syrian and armenian girls. they all have the same major headlines of problems with guys, im NOT blaming them, but most of the time it looks like the both (guy & girl) are in different directions!

Touta said...

hahahaha! two girls at the same time....thats easy, what about the guys with selections of 3 and 4...:S

shhhh, if other iraqi guys hear you, they're going to envy you. :P
well if they are headed in different directions, maybe people need to be clear about what they want. :)

saminkie said...

Such a clever post, thank you Touta.

Touta said...

You're very welcome Saminkie. :D

John Borris Tan Abril said...

How to treat iraqi man her girlfriend??

mauly mauly said...

I really like the article that you rein in this very interesting and memorable.

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