Arabeyes: Are Arab-American Men Losers?

“Are Arab-American men really losers?” wonders Asoom, a young Arab-American woman – or are the parents of potential brides out of touch with reality when it comes to selecting a suitable son-in-law?

According to Asoom:

Many adults take the handful of guys in my small tiny community as representative of Arab Americans all over the US and have decided that there are just no eligible guys for their daughters. They’ll say it's unfortunate their daughters are going to marry someone who grew up in different country and doesn't speak fluent English but there's just no other option because Arab American males are losers. It's hard to find someone who’s a practicing Muslim, educated, good career, and raised in the US. The cultural barrier will be a small compromise she’ll quickly get over.

Such a situation, says the blogger, is unfortunate as it reflects how out of touch with reality such mothers are.

It's like “lady have you been to the Middle East lately???” It's not exactly a land of young prince charmings piling degrees, accumulating assets, and observing the 5 pillars of Islam all while waiting for your daughter to make her appearance and complete his life.

She reasons that the problem for the lack of eligible suitors for Muslim American-Arab women is because girls are more ambitious and qualified than men – arguing that the trend is not restricted to the US only but includes the Arab world.

Guys are generally less ambitious than they were a generation ago, and girls are more. If anything, I would say this is more pronounced in the Middle East than it is in the US. In Jordan, I used to joke around with my cousin whose in her last year studying engineering that she better pull together and secure a classmate before she graduates, or else she’ll end up with someone in the military who chain smokes and curses a lot.

Asoom also narrates an experience with an Arab mother, she has come across, who has actually sent her daughter packing back to the Middle East to land an appropriate suitor.

I was frustratingly trying to explain this to an acquaintance of my mom's at a ladies lunch who kept going on and on about how she's been trying to convince her daughter (whose not even 20) to look in the Middle East because in the whole US of A there's “no one”. She’s even admitted to sending her daughter to spend this summer in Jordan and Dubai with relatives with the main purpose of introducing her to some “qualified” guys.

The blogger stands up for the defence of Arab-American men. She goes on to describe Arab-American men as follows:

There are a lot of great things about American culture and society that's not as much of a common denominator in the Middle East and other Eastern countries. Guys that grew up in the US, as a result of being exposed to a diversity of lifestyles and norms, tend to be more calm, patient, and balanced. The struggles involved in growing up as a minority breed men that are open-minded and sensitive. Those that choose to practice Islam will even have a deeper level of faith and understanding than those that grew up in a largely Muslim environment.

Arab-American girls too get a share in Asoom's post, when she writes about why an Arab man raised in the Middle East would find it difficult to deal with them.

A common denominator amongst girls that grew up in the US compared to girls that grew up in the East is they’re more sensitive, spoiled, and curious. We like to ask “why?” a lot and sometimes rebel just for the sake of rebelling. Girls with such qualities can encounter much difficulty with a guy that grew up in the East who was exposed to a narrower set of experiences and lifestyles growing up. Western raised guys are NOT BETTER than Eastern raised girls, but they are generally better for Western raised girls.


  • CA King

    It couldn’t be because most Arab men, American or not, have been raised by their mother’s to believe that they are the best the world has to offer and that they don’t have to settle for someone who demands respect or consideration from a partner. The world is changing and Arab men are probably the last to get on board. They would rather pretend that they are hugely successful, better than everyone else and more intelligent than anyone than to admit their faults and GROW as human beings.

    Hmmm…I have to wonder. Is this site edited by a man??? LOL

  • CA, I don’t want to generalize too mcuh but for some families that is the case and it’s unfortunate.

    This is the link to my new blog.

  • CA

    I know it was rash of me to generalize so however, I have many Arab friends and it seems to be normal in most of the homes I’ve visited.

    The men in the USA get caught between the family ways and the American way. It is a shame however, change is nearly impossible for most. Their identities are too deeply ingrained with their outward appearances.

    After seven years with a Palestinian/Saudi man, I know that I gave it my all and got very little in return, the least of all, respect and acceptance, even after so many years.

    Good luck with the new blog and I wish you success and happiness!

  • CA

    where is the link????? i can’t see it here!

Join the conversation

Authors, please log in »


  • All comments are reviewed by a moderator. Do not submit your comment more than once or it may be identified as spam.
  • Please treat others with respect. Comments containing hate speech, obscenity, and personal attacks will not be approved.

Receive great stories from around the world directly in your inbox.

Stay up to date about Global Voices and our mission. See our Privacy Policy for details. Newsletter powered by Mailchimp (Privacy Policy and Terms).

* = required field
Email Frequency

No thanks, show me the site