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New bride looking for some perspective on Pakistani culture

Hi ! I am a Greek-American living in California and recently married my Pakistani husband. I would like your advice on whether the following is "normal" within Pakistani culture.

By way of context, I converted long before meeting my husband, and his family never opposed our marriage nor have they expressed disliking me before. My in-laws live in another state - we traveled there to visit them for eid (our first eid as newlyweds). Once we arrived, my mother in law (MIL) showed us where we would be sleeping: in a room normally used as an office by the garage. It was a very cold and it did not have a bed or air matrress - instead, my MIL stacked blankets on the floor for us to sleep on. My in laws are not poor, and they live in a 4 bedroom home - the main guest bedroom was given to my sister in law since she has 2 children, and the remainder of the rooms belong to my (single) siblings-in-law.

I suffered from pretty bad back and knee pain since the room was so cold already, and sleeping so close to the hardwood floor made it even colder. I told my MIL how about pains and she simply (sympathetically) offered to run me a warm bath. That visit left me feeling very hurt and confused. In both Greek and American culture, making a guest sleep on the floor is extremely rude. My husband thinks that the house was simply full due to eid and his mom did her best. But i can't help but wonder why she thought it was acceptable to host a new bride on her first eid on the floor - without even trying to make efforts like purchasing an air mattress, or asking one of the siblings to give up their room for the couch. I can't help but feel that my mother in law was trying to send me a message or perhaps she does not like me. She is not too traditional and very well educated if that helps provide further context.

My question is: is this normal in Pakistani culture ? Is it a rude thing to do to make a guest sleep on the floor in your home ? Any advice or perspective would be so much appreciated!

Hi Maria ,
                 First of all would like to tell you as you are also converted you will soon or later come to know if you study Teaching of Islam , Guest is Blessing of Allah(God) in Islam, And As you wrote your Husband's Family even do not have any problem about your marriage , But  as far as my Thinking your "in Laws" shouldn't do this , as you are newly married and that was your first visit to "in laws". Yes there can be some time happen in Future with the passage of time when understandings between you and your "in laws" grow up. And also let you know one thing, in Pakistani culture Actually Especially Pakistani Mother in Law  gives more priority to son in law rather than Daughter in law which i think shouldn't happen & its not fair also  , but its culture !! What can say ? But i also strongly condemn this act of your mother in law .But you have to be mentally prepare yourself for future for so many experience which might be look odd . Actually  in Pakistani Culture, Parents thinks Daughter in law as a real family member or strong part of family and expect many more  more sacrifices from Daughter in law which some times looks not even good but as told its pakistani culture , Simply in short form can say Daughter in law have to show  patience , But try to observe more about attitude of your in law family if its same " rude " in future , then its time to worry and its real time to talk to husband and ask where is the problem ?

:blink:

Hi! and most welcome to this forum !

Im mexican - muslim , married for 7 years with a pakistani . We live in Mexico , but use to go a few times to my husband house in Pakistan . My in laws already passed away many years before I met my husband , so is only him and his single sisters, brothers and one married brother with wife and two kids. Sooooo its crowded! a crowded house.

And the thing .... is that muslim culture is about treating well a guess (even if they are not family member) , try to give him the best bed and enough food or at least what the family can offer ....

But never let them without care .... so this behavior toward both of you , can have two explanations.....

*Your husband is not the main supporter of the family  ( meaning supporter of their pride , his family doesnt respect him or his decisions he has made .... like marrying you a non- pakistani woman born-muslim , or he doesnt makes enough money for their expectatives or in the community his job is not a good enough job).

*In fact they are trying to annoy you or make it clear you are not welcome .

Sorry to say , but his brothers also are not good brothers, in pakistan, whenever we go , the single brothers vacate their own room for us to sleep in the room with air conditioner, so they go and sleep in the roof top .

My first time in Pakistan I was a guest of my collegue friend , in the her husband´s house , that time I wasnt muslim or even married, so I was just a guest , and they  put me on one of the Brother´s  childrens bedroom and took the children out to sleep with them . They put a bed for me , sheets , pillows , even they bring an iron , mirror and things for me to get my cloth ready in the mornings . And I wasnt even part of their family ! and they were so nice and asking me if everything was fine with the room. So listening about how you got left to laid in the floor , is really shocking  :o !!

Specially because I also have back pains and can relate to you since the first night !!! OMG !! must have being horrible!

Try to keep your distance if you dont need to see them that often!

Maybe trying to say to your husband to stay in a hotel , can hurt their family feelings or being not so diplomatic, so for staying with them the next time, you better bring your own matress!!! hehe , pillows and heater !

:lol:

that will show them how to treat family well !!!

Best of luck !!!

MariaTheGreek :

Hi ! I am a Greek-American living in California and recently married my Pakistani husband. I would like your advice on whether the following is "normal" within Pakistani culture.

By way of context, I converted long before meeting my husband, and his family never opposed our marriage nor have they expressed disliking me before. My in-laws live in another state - we traveled there to visit them for eid (our first eid as newlyweds). Once we arrived, my mother in law (MIL) showed us where we would be sleeping: in a room normally used as an office by the garage. It was a very cold and it did not have a bed or air matrress - instead, my MIL stacked blankets on the floor for us to sleep on. My in laws are not poor, and they live in a 4 bedroom home - the main guest bedroom was given to my sister in law since she has 2 children, and the remainder of the rooms belong to my (single) siblings-in-law.

I suffered from pretty bad back and knee pain since the room was so cold already, and sleeping so close to the hardwood floor made it even colder. I told my MIL how about pains and she simply (sympathetically) offered to run me a warm bath. That visit left me feeling very hurt and confused. In both Greek and American culture, making a guest sleep on the floor is extremely rude. My husband thinks that the house was simply full due to eid and his mom did her best. But i can't help but wonder why she thought it was acceptable to host a new bride on her first eid on the floor - without even trying to make efforts like purchasing an air mattress, or asking one of the siblings to give up their room for the couch. I can't help but feel that my mother in law was trying to send me a message or perhaps she does not like me. She is not too traditional and very well educated if that helps provide further context.

My question is: is this normal in Pakistani culture ? Is it a rude thing to do to make a guest sleep on the floor in your home ? Any advice or perspective would be so much appreciated!

Hai, I'am married to Pakistani too.

Your mother in law only provide you pillow and floor because she didn't have room left and you are not their guest. If you think that you are their guest, it's very wrong thought.

The Pakistani family will not consider you as their guest anymore because you married to their son.

If this happen, you should ask your husband to stay at hotel but I don't think the Pakistani family will like it because they love being around each other.

if I were you I would buy the small bed by myself and still stayed over in my mother in law's house, it's important to win your mother in law's heart so your marriage will not have much problem relates to these joint family issue in the future.

My question is: is this normal in Pakistani culture ? Is it a rude thing to do to make a guest sleep on the floor in your home ? Any advice or perspective would be so much appreciated!

I think you have asked this same question as well on Marrying Pakistani Community.

I have answered your question on that forum too.

Anyway, in Pakistani culture they won't think that you are their guest anymore because you are their daughter in law.

Most of them are very hospitable people towards the guest but the problem is you are not their guest. They will treat you as usual, if other family members will sleep on the floor then you will sleep on the floor too.

And what Liz said on the preceded post is true.
If your husband is the oldest son, so the other young brothers will provide him a nice room. Mostly this happen if the father already passed, because the elderst son is the head of the family and they will treat him respectfully. Especially if he pays for the family expenses as well.

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