Quid Pro Quo

Laila's Discussion with her granmother































*Nefrah mennik = you get married (translation for non arabic-speaking readers)

I thought social pressure for marriage starts for women in their early 30’s. But guess what! From the moment girls are born, they are brought up to “hope” and “dream” of the day they will get married (most women I know dream of this day). Marriage & childbearing is still regarded as the most rewarding achievement in the life of a woman, while all the other “career-related” achievements are only secondary and should be avoided if the financial situation allows it. This clearly causes a lack of confidence and sense of failure to some of the women who are not married – which I find completely wrong! I’m glad Kolena Laila initiative is giving me the space to say what I think about all this!

Other Lebanese “bloggeresses” for Kolena Laila.

Café Thawra “Fighting the right ennemy”

• Identity Chef “The Lebanese Laila: 5 lessons in Marketing & Self Branding”


Lara’s photograph

• … (let me know if I missed someone! 🙂 )

Now before I leave you back to your holidays (for the fortunate ones) and to your work (for the not-so-lucky ones like me!) here is a song from the soundtrack of a movie that I’ve been CRAVING to watch, but haven’t had 2 free hours in a row to do so. Walk The Line ❤ The song is ‘It Ain’t Me Babe’ sang by Joaquim Phoenix & Reese Witherspoon for the movie … Enjoy, and have a great day 🙂

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29 Responses to “Quid Pro Quo”

  1. Qifa Nabki Says:


    Ya shattoura ente!!! (pinching cheek)

  2. Hussam Says:

    If it helps you feel any better, the pressure is on boys as well.
    However, i have come to realize that this pressure is justifiable. I believe Arabs are afraid of a sudden mass-extinction, that is why they want everybody to get married and have children quickly. It just enhances our odds for survival 😀

  3. littlehousesouthernprairie Says:

    these cartoons are really great

  4. Ekios Says:

    Exellent Maya, I’ll bookmark that one in my “favoris” list 🙂

    1- the lebanese social laws will always remain some kind of a mystery for me and my European logic … @ 23 we don’t have kids, and in general, we are still at school finishing our studies …

    2- and of course grandma had to “pray” :p

  5. Darine Sabbagh Says:

    He he.. well i am married… but of course society considers me married for all the wrong reasons:
    _When we were engaged and even before taht everyone was asking about when are we getting married but then,
    _ I got married young (according to them (reasons below) not me) and not to a rich man, but but of course he is the richest and most generous in spirit for me
    _ we got married before getting an apartment, which is a big shame and a drama we have to got through at every family reunion
    _ we do not want children now because I want to focus on my career, which so bad an d wrong on so many levels
    _ I do not want to quit my job even after we have children and we do not want to hire a maid, we are considering us both switching to a part time solution , which is again wrong indefinitely

    So u see society’s expectations are screwed, no matter what you do 🙂

  6. Liliane Says:

    you forgot me!

    shou bit oul el teta bta3mle, fehmeh ya zghire? 😉

  7. uberVU - social comments Says:

    Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by nightS: #KolenaLaila #Lebanon Quid Pro Quo: http://bit.ly/6cOdqn by @MayaZankoul…

  8. Anonymous Says:

    Couldn’t agree more… I hate the social pressure that our families exert on us so that we get married and have kids at a young age. I fail to understand why this is so…

  9. Mira Says:

    Hehe 😛 I remember the chat we had in ABC…

  10. Delirious Says:

    whatever we do, it’s never enough!!

    great post, Mayoush!!

  11. Wissam M Says:

    nefra7 minnik Maya 😉

  12. nahil Says:

    hahahahahahaha alla yse3dik 😛 keep working woman 😀 el rejel ekhir shi! shu badik b hal 7araket w waja3 rass 😀

  13. nahil Says:

    ana aktar shi 7abet the wink w the “GOOD” news… za3ran ahlna 😀

  14. Anonymous Says:

    Eh well, don’t think it ends with marriage. I got married this summer (at 28-3a shwey kinet 3annasit!) and the day we get back from the honeymoon, “yalla, inshalla nshouf wled!”

  15. annie Says:

    People in Lebanon get married for different reasons :
    1-Financial status for both partners to make ends meet
    2-Desperate and afraid of being alone
    3-Social pressure
    Either way ,I think Lebanese are conservative about this issue ,it’s none of their business if a young or old woman wants to get married or not ,and what I hate most about the Lebanese society is that when you reach your thirthies they think you’re too old and wrinkly and no guy will look at you, well guess what people women don’t anyone to live ,I prefer the modern way ,iving with FRIENDS !!!!!

  16. Serpico Says:

    Very nice movie… 🙂

  17. anissa Says:

    well, i have to tell you that i was 40 or perhaps older when my mother finally stopped asking the same question: amtin rah tetzawajeh ya binteh? loved the post. thx.

  18. Firas Hamdan Says:

    i’m a male, and i support everything u wrote, is there is place for me in kollena laila, i don’t mind being called a girl’s name if it was for a good cause. cheeeeeeers
    here and now,

  19. Julia Says:

    Great post, as they mentioned previously, Lebanese society pressure always exist.

    I remember on my wedding day people started wishing me “nifra7lik b 3aris” ” inou iza 3arous maslan? ma bimsheh el 7al? :P” (masculine society)

    Well marriage is not about how old you are, it is all about finding the right person for you, and the person you really want to live all your life with.

    Concerning career you always can have both, if your partner won’t support you in what you want to fulfill then better not to have one.

    Finally, mabrouk for all the accomplishments you did last year. Wish you all the success for the coming new year.

  20. darinerachkidy Says:

    i bet she felt sorry for u after u left…she must have said: oh, My, she is a looser…manna chatra mitil imma, ..la min tal3a hek hal binit…hehheheheheheh u ‘ll be hearing the same comment until u get marry as per social standards,…

  21. annie Says:

    FUCKKKK LEBANESE SOCIETY,it’s none of their concern when a girl gets married or when does she want that ,women are not sex robots or machines to have kids !!!!!!!!!!!!

  22. worriedlebanese Says:

    didn’t know about kolena laila initiative. it sounds fascinating. going to check it out now. thanks for pointing it out.

  23. worriedlebanese Says:

    oh, and congrats for your achievements!

  24. rolf Says:

    No need to “hope” and “dream”, everyone will get married one day (if they want). In the meantime, try to enjoy the rest.
    It makes me sorry and angry at the same time to see women fall into this way of thinking, and make lots of drama about getting married, as if if was some kind of supernatural achievement. Maybe it would be easier for them to get married if they didnt torture themselves into it.

  25. Lebanon: Bloggers Participated in “Kolena Laila” :: Elites TV Says:

    […] at “Maya’s Amalgam” addressed the same problem with a funny comic about a conversation with her grandmother. She added: I thought social pressure for marriage […]

  26. Global Voices Online » Lebanon: Bloggers Participated in “Kolena Laila” Says:

    […] at “Maya's Amalgam” addressed the same problem with a funny comic about a conversation with her grandmother. She added: I thought social pressure for marriage […]

  27. Global Voices in Italiano » Libano: molti i post sulla condizione della donna araba per l’iniziativa Kolena Laila Says:

    […] su “Maya's Amalgam” [in] affronta il medesimo problema con un divertente fumetto [in] riferito a una conversazione con la nonna. E aggiunge: Credevo che la pressione sociale […]

  28. Danny Says:

    Thank you so much for this. Well written and so true.
    Nice comics !

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