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Heina Dadabhoy spent their childhood as a practicing Muslim who never in their right mind would have believed that they would grow up to be an atheist feminist secular humanist.
Heina is a speaker and panelist on a range of diverse topics including feminism, race, LGBT issues, the challenges of deconversion, Islam, non-monogamy, strategies for inclusivity, and the various intersections of the above.
You may have heard them at Skepticon, the American Atheists National Convention, the Huffington Post Live, and Have Your Say on the BBC World Service or read about them in the New York Times.
If I choose him, I'll have to leave the home, and they'll disown me.
I have until the end of the month (June) to make the decision. I love my parents and it breaks my heart to see how hurt they are, I hate the fact that they're mad at me. We have been together for about 2.5 years now, and I can't imagine life without him.
In a nutshell, Shaikh says, he felt like they were having fun and he wasn't. Ghazala Irshad, who also grew up in a Muslim family in Illinois, says she knows young Muslims who growing up, were told to "lower [their] gaze" when they came across the opposite sex. We don’t know how to talk to the opposite sex, how do we go about this?
"[But] by the time it comes to the age of trying to get married, then our parents are like, well, why aren’t you getting married, we want grandchildren ... We’re not allowed to date, we’ve been separated, we haven’t developed friendships," she says.
At home, "there was no such thing as the words dating or relationships.
It was just something that was non-existent," he recalls. "You see your friends, they go out on movie dates and they go to the mall and they hold hands," he says. And this creates a dilemma for young Muslims in search of love.
He was born there too, but when he was 3, they all moved to the US.
Growing up, when it came to dating, relationships and girls, Shaikh would experience one thing at home, another outside.
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