Over the years, I have come across many types of hijaabis. There's the "I don't talk or look at boys" Hijaabi (I don't think there is anything necessarily wrong with her - her lifestyle just doesn't appeal to me), there's the "strictly business" hijaabi (I can relate to her), there's the "he's like my brother" hijaabi (I don't know what to think about her) and the "I'm covered and that's all that matters" hijaabi (I have issues with this one).
I want to preface this by saying that I'm not trying to play the holier than thou role here. I am sure there are a million and one things wrong with me and how I observe my hijaab. As a matter of fact, every now and then I'll do a little self evaluation and think the different ways that I totally don't do hijaab or Islam justice (astaghfirullah). I simply want to point out a few things that I've been noticing in my daily dealings with various hijaabis.
The "I don't talk to or look at boys" hijaabi: I used to be her. I had to be her. I felt that I needed to play this role in order to stay on the right path. After the Mr. Possibility situation I went into this mode. It worked for a while, but very quickly proved impossible for me. Notice, I say for me..as there are many sisters who I know are capable of playing this role. This, I think, is the best way to stay out of trouble....it works..but its hard.
The "Strictly business" hijaabi: This more of the type of hijaabi I am. I'll talk to a brother, but only because I need something...or because he needs something. Where some people may have issues with me in this regard is that I am also friendly...not friendly in a flirty manner (never that) but friendly the way you would be with a business colleague. I smile, laugh, joke around etc....but in a respectful manner.
The "he's like my brother" hijaabi: This is the sister that talks freely with and jokes around with brothers with the pretense that "he's like my brother."All I have to say to this sister is...be careful! Just because he's like your brother definitely does NOT mean he is...you're treading dangerous waters. Men are all the same..and their minds are all programed to think the same way. Besides, shaytan is one sneaky fellow. Bottom line, he's not your brother....don't treat him like he is.
The "I'm covered and that's all that matters" hijaabi: So, I have the HUGEST problem with this hijaabi. Okay, maybe that came out wrong. Let me explain. Non-Muslim men for the most part, don't understand hijaab. They are men nonetheless, they hiss and howl like dogs in a meat market at the sight of a pretty lady...even when that pretty lady happens to be a Muslim lady in hijaab. I have come across countless occasions where I have been winked at, had kisses blown at and been flirted with (I'm not that pretty). My general response to such inappropriate behavior is to look the other way and keep walking. However, I have seen other sisters laugh, smile back and even wave. They think its funny, but what this sister doesn't understand is that she just gave Islam a bad name. That man that flirted with her has no idea what Islam is or why we cover and by acting in such a manner you just showed him the Hijaab means nothing. No doubt, you can't help that you are beautiful...Allah (SWT) made you that way, but its a test...and by acting immature...you're failing. To me, hijaab is a form of Dawah. I use it explain why I can't shake a strange man's hand or why I definitely can't hug him. I use my Islamic identity to explain why I can't date, etc. When people mis-portray hijaab it upsets me.
This is more of a reminder to myself rather than an attempt to finger point.