This is a two-part story about a convert in Serbia. The first part will cover her experience prior to Islam, when she was partying all of the time. The second part will cover her life after Islam. The name of the girl will be kept anonymous.
I want you to know that this is not just a story, this is the current situation for the girl. She wrote her experience, hiding in her family’s home.
After I told my mom about the Turkish boy I was interested in, she was so angry. She thought I was crazy and told me she will never accept my relationship.
A month had passed… the boy and I traveled. He showed me respect, he showed me love. He also taught me a lot about Islam.
My mom and I were chatting and arguing. She told me “you cannot be with a Muslim! You were born in Serbia, you are an orthodox Christian. You will have some get an orthodox husband near our family.” She still did not approve of the relationship.
After my mom told me that, I couldn’t contain it anymore. I told her I was Muslim.
I feel I made the biggest mistake of my life by telling her. My mother told my grandma and uncle. Then they each called me on the phone to say horrible things to me. I was living a nightmare.
The following day, my uncle told me to come talk to him, face-to-face. I was so scared. This was the first time in my life I was scared of him. He was very angry and he threatened me to see him, or else.
I told my friends I was going back to my hometown. I told them if I do not text you or you do not hear from me, call the police. The next day around 6pm I arrived in my hometown. I started to talk with my uncle. At first, he was nice, like nothing happened. Then after a while, he started to yell at me. He told me I was stupid, blind, a horrible person, and selfish.
He asked me, “Why didn’t you think of your family? How could you betray us? Your family and your people? Your religion? The history of Serbians?”
He then called my mom on Viber (whom is in another country).
Everything became worse. My mom demanded I go back to the orthodox religion or she will kill me, then kill herself or she will lock me up and never let me out. She told me I was in a cult and someone had put magic on me so I would be Muslim. It was really hard and scary for me. I could not handle how mad they became.
I ended up accepting their wishes because I was so scared of them. I went back to being an orthodox Christian to satisfy them. I just wanted to run away even though there were Muslims I could rely on to help me. I couldn’t run away because my family stole my passport. The next day I left my family to go back where I was studying for my Masters degree. My family let me stay there for 10 days until they forced me back home. My uncle came and took me to an orthodox convent, where my cousin was a nun. My family was going to force me to become a nun. They told my cousin and the priest they want me to come back to the orthodox religion. I told the priest that I did not want to follow the orthodox faith but he ignored me. The priest told my family, it will not be easy for me to be an orthodox again but it is possible. I cried so much.
Just 10 days ago, weeks after that day at the convent, my family forced me back to my uncle’s house. He talked with my mom and they decided I would come back to live with my grandma and uncle.
They are now forcing me to sleep in the kitchen. They want to make sure I am not in a cult, so they watch me as much as they can. To satisfy them, I started reading orthodox teachings. I will soon be orthodox again to satisfy them. To them I will be an orthodox and practice like one but in my heart, I am and always will be Muslim. When they are not here I pray when I can. I do not eat pig meat with them.
I do not know what to do. I cannot run away. This pushed me to lose a significant amount of weight and become very stressed.
I couldn’t leave my mom now. She suffered from a heart attack and was in the hospital. My uncle had high blood pressure. I didn’t want to leave them. I would feel so guilty if something would have happened to them because I left. I just don’t have that kind of willpower.
Yesterday after talking to my mom, she said she will still not accept the boy from Turkey. She was yelling at me and made me cry so much. But today I heard her on the phone telling my uncle she will accept my relationship with him. My uncle also told her she needs to stop yelling at me and treating me so bad. He told her she must accept the love I have for this Turkish boy. However, they will not accept anything until I am Orthodox again.
Right now as I write this, I am waiting home alone for my uncle to return. I know where my passport is but I still cannot run away. I need my family and they need me. Even if I want to run away, I cannot. Though I do not look at them with love anymore, I cannot just leave them.
Today, I have the courage again talk to my uncle about the Turkish boy. I will tell my uncle I will never give up loving him or wanting to be with him.
On the inside I am a Muslim, no priest or convent can change that. On the outside, I will become orthodox again just to be with this Turkish boy. Then once I can be with him, I will be free to be a Muslim again. I want this hell I am living in to be over.
I just need my family to accept him, then I will leave and go to Turkey. God willing. I will marry him. I will have a new family and kids someday.
Currently, this is my life and my story. I am fighting for my love, my life, and I am fighting to be able to be a practicing Muslim someday.