marwa rakha

Dear Marwa,

I’m a 20 year old visually impaired girl. I met my boyfriend online; he’s almost in my same situation – except he is Muslim, and I am Christian. We became close friends for 3 years then we started a long-distance relationship, knowing that it has no future and that both our parents would never accept it.

We kept it a secret; we were madly in love and honestly, we regularly had phone sex. Everything just seemed perfect. Lately, I felt he is not investing much effort anymore. We’ve been together for 2 years now, sleeping together every day on the phone. I was feeling ignored as he didn’t do anything special for my birthday. He doesn’t really mind not talking for a number of days. We both still love each other, but the routine is getting to us. Should we just give up and avoid the confrontation with our parents?

We are meeting soon for sure. We are both extremely independent; our blindness is not an issue. Please advise what to do; I’m not sure if it’s ok to continue.

Yours truly,

Dear S.,

I salute you and your boyfriend for your spirit, your independence, and your courage to fall in love, and stay in love, all that time. In your message, you mention routine, and you interpret the aloofness you have been experiencing to this routine. I would like to replace that word with “aimlessness”. I think this is what is killing your relationship. In a relationship like yours, eventually, one or both of the partners, would realize that the relationship is going nowhere. This sense of wastefulness can place a cold towel on the steamiest of relationships.

This leads to the second point, the reason behind this aimlessness. It does not need a genius to figure out that your interfaith relationship is frowned upon, and that it would take the two of you a huge amount of effort to work a miracle with your families.

Unfortunately, many people think you could get married and you can stay Christian. This attitude is unfair and quite superficial. Thinking like that totally disregards your family, your Church, your friends and community, and your own beliefs. His family might also try to dismay him from this union. They would rather go down the regular road of having their son get married to a girl from his own religion, and having in-laws who follow, practice and believe in the same faith.

Doubt can also drive this sense of aimlessness; doubting the ability of two blind partners to successfully manage a household, have a family and raise kids. You said that you are both very independent, but I believe that your partner is having a moment of self-doubt. Managing well as a single person is totally different than being married and responsible for other people.

I do not have magical solutions or clear-cut advice. The best thing you could do is to actually talk to your boyfriend about how you feel; about your worries, fears and the assumptions that I just made.

You two are very strong people and, as a team, you can certainly overcome many obstacles in your way. You have conquered many odds, and you are fully capable of finding a way to stay together. Trusting one another with your doubts and insecurities will strengthen your front and will earn you the happy ending that your love story deserves.