7 Things Muslim Women Are Tired Of Hearing

Photographed by Natalia Mantini.
It goes without saying that the world is full of badass Muslim women. Sadly, stereotypes and gross misconceptions about Muslim women and their faith persist.
That's why, on the very first Muslim Women's Day, we're highlighting the experiences that Muslim women have had with people who are misinformed about their faith. Between our own readers' responses and those we found on Reddit, one thing's clear: Some misguided and/or offensive questions are way too common.
It should go without saying that there are some circumstances under which Muslim women are allowed to take off the hijab. And it shouldn't be on Muslim women to explain the entirety of their religion's views on gender. All this might sound obvious, but these are the topics that Muslim women have had to deal with.
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Ahead, seven Muslim women tell you in their own words what they're tired of hearing. We encourage you to share your own stories in the comments.
1 of 7

I never take the hijab off.

"Hijabi here. The number of people who think I never take the hijab off is alarmingly high. 'But how do you shower with it on?'"

-Reddit user gowahoo
2 of 7

Muslim women couldn't speak for themselves.

"I was tired of hearing that Muslim women couldn't speak for themselves [and] that...we couldn't go to school, work, go out to have fun or even drive. So I said [I] can't sit back and not do anything, so I created a podcast where Muslim women share their stories and work."

-Fousia
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3 of 7

Are you oppressed?

"'Do you wear that (khimar) when you sleep?' 'Are you oppressed?' 'Do you get hot in that (jilbaab)?' 'Explain ISIS.'"

-Reddit user Shakielaaa
4 of 7

Muslim women have been forced to 'cover' themselves.

"That Muslim women have been forced to 'cover' themselves. Or any Muslim women who wears a headscarf/hijab had been indoctrinated. Really? Why do people think this? Islam has been here for a very, very, very long time. Do you really think that every single woman who wears the hijab, every single generation, has been forced? We're fully capable of making our own minds up and believing what we want, thank you.

"Another thing that is somewhat linked to the above is the belief that the Quran tells you to wear a hijab and cover your head. Nowhere in the Quran does it say that. It asks men and women to be modest. Modesty including your physical appearance but also, more importantly, be modest in your personality. Meaning, refrain from swearing, shouting and being obscene. What the Quran does say in regards to physical appearance is for women to be modest, specifically to cover their chests and for men to cover themselves from their navels to their knees. This is actually the reason you see Muslim men in their white garbs — they wear a loose garment as is their interpretation of what physical modesty is. Like women will wear the jilbab."

-Reddit user msgrump
5 of 7

Islam is about force.

"I find that people think Islam is about force: forced conversions, forced veiling, etc, etc. However, it's quite clear that there is supposed to be no compulsion in the religion."

-Reddit user MeredithofArabia
6 of 7

Women who wear hijabs are traditional.

"Not all women who wear hijabs are traditional or follow the religion strictly."

-Reddit user Lady25
7 of 7

People take the hijab as a debate issue.

"My pet peeve is when people take the hijab as a debate issue. We have more things in our Muslim world to debate about and make better than the hijab. It pisses me off when people will forget whatever's happening in the Middle East and other places and start trashing someone just because she doesn't wear the hijab."

-Reddit user iwantoutnownow
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