What's NEW on Zando?

Shop our latest arrivals for shoes & apparel now!

‘All Tunisian men want a virgin bride’

Comment on this story


scalpel sxc

sxc.hu

Tunis -

It happens every April ahead of the summer marriage season, says Tunisian gynaecologist Faouzi Hajri - desperate brides-to-be beg for surgery to make them “virgins” again for their wedding night.

Fearing rejection as “used” women in a conservative Muslim country where premarital sex is nevertheless common, Tunisian women are increasingly opting for the sort of surgery offered by Doctor Hajri.

But it doesn't stop them regretting the need to convince new husbands of their purity.

“A woman's honour shouldn't be determined by a few drops of blood,” says Salima, a 32-year-old who admits she had the operation so that her “honour” was not in question on her wedding night.

It is easy for a woman to have her hymen surgically reconstructed in Tunisia.

The routine hospital operation takes around 30 minutes and costs from 400 to 700 euros ($550 to $960), with a less permanent version needing to be done within a week of the wedding, while the stitches hold.

“The number of women resorting to hymenoplasty or hymenorrhaphy (as the operations are known) has gone up a lot in recent years,” says Moncef Kamel, a doctor in the southern island of Djerba.

The women he operates on - around 100 each year, aged between 18 and 45 - come with their faces hidden behind a scarf and dark glasses, “have a normal, active sex life”, and generally hail from working-class backgrounds.

“It's a taboo subject, which explains why there's a lack of official statistics,” says Doctor Hajri.

The Tunis-based gynaecologist says he also treats about 100 women annually, including from neighbouring Libya and Algeria.

Since the 1950s, Tunisia has been considered the most progressive country in the Arab world in terms of women's rights, and politicians enshrined gender equality in the new constitution adopted in January.

Demographic changes have reinforced personal freedoms, with sex outside marriage increasingly common and more people opting to marry later.

But conservative attitudes persist, and for many Tunisian men marrying a virgin remains a priority, hence the rising demand for hymen restorations.

For Tarek Belhadj Mohamed, a sociologist, such male attitudes reflect the “hypocrisy” of Tunisian society, which he said refuses to recognise the change in behaviour of a large section of the population.

Research by psychoanalyst Nedra Ben Smail indicates that just five percent of Tunisian young women are not worried about losing their virginity before marriage, while more than 75 percent of women appearing to be virgins on their wedding night have had the operation.

“The Tunisian way of life seems modern and open, but the reality is different: our society and even our ruling elite is in theory tolerant on the question of virginity, but when it affects them personally, virginity is a primordial condition for marriage,” said Belhadj Mohamed.

“Virginity certifies a woman's validity in our society where her purpose is essentially sexual and reproductive, while men have to 'train' so that they are sexually mature when they get married,” he argued.

He called the hymen operation a form of “discrimination towards women”.

Salima agrees, despite having consented to the operation herself, saying she was forced into it by “the hypocrisy of men and of our society”.

The young woman decided one day that she would be honest with her boyfriend, whom she had not slept with, and told him she was not a virgin.

“But as soon as he knew, he refused to marry and did everything he could to get me into his bed. That's the way Tunisian men think. A woman who has had sex before marriage is just a slut and can't be a good mother!”

Another young woman, Sabra, believes unmarried women should have the right to a sex life just like the men, and that virginity is never a guarantee of fidelity.

But the 27-year-old also chose to lie and yield to social pressures, rather than run the risk of remaining single.

“If I had told my husband that I wasn't a virgin, he would never have agreed to marry me. And it's the same for many women in Tunisia.” - Sapa-AFP


sign up
 
 

Comment Guidelines



  1. Please read our comment guidelines.
  2. Login and register, if you haven’ t already.
  3. Write your comment in the block below and click (Post As)
  4. Has a comment offended you? Hover your mouse over the comment and wait until a small triangle appears on the right-hand side. Click triangle () and select "Flag as inappropriate". Our moderators will take action if need be.

     

limegreen48
I'm a 48 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 45 and 55.
View Profile
GirlInterruptedNow
I'm a 41 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 38 and 45.
View Profile
Stiletto1
I'm a 53 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 50 and 57.
View Profile
_Alwayssmiling
I'm a 30 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 41.
View Profile
AGX
I'm a 36 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 44.
View Profile
Lvit2C
I'm a 29 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 27 and 39.
View Profile
dreamsoftly
I'm a 49 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 47 and 58.
View Profile
DaffodilTulip
I'm a 48 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 40 and 50.
View Profile
Kosmos075
I'm a 39 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 55.
View Profile
Lulu_101
I'm a 36 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 38 and 45.
View Profile
nads42
I'm a 42 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 38 and 58.
View Profile
RooikopBokkie
I'm a 52 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 45 and 52.
View Profile
blondgirl
I'm a 57 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 53 and 60.
View Profile
CLC_91
I'm a 23 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 35.
View Profile
pesin15
I'm a 38 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 18 and 100.
View Profile
1020
I'm a 34 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 34 and 38.
View Profile
molletdelvalles
I'm a 39 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 55.
View Profile
Ninks
I'm a 36 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 36 and 42.
View Profile
AmaJ
I'm a 44 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 42 and 50.
View Profile
Livs_89
I'm a 25 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 38.
View Profile
Gem31
I'm a 24 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 35.
View Profile
Magnolia52
I'm a 52 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 50 and 65.
View Profile
lookingsexy200
I'm a 36 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 34 and 45.
View Profile
2gether4ever
I'm a 41 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 40 and 50.
View Profile
ioio
I'm a 37 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 45.
View Profile
angelface93
I'm a 21 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 21 and 29.
View Profile
Wonderer_0202
I'm a 42 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 40 and 52.
View Profile
snowbird7
I'm a 33 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 31 and 39.
View Profile
Stella143
I'm a 35 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 34 and 45.
View Profile
Bluebell531
I'm a 46 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 40 and 60.
View Profile
butterflykisses14
I'm a 30 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 31 and 51.
View Profile
Ellevee53
I'm a 54 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 50 and 56.
View Profile
Sunshine_again
I'm a 46 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 43 and 58.
View Profile
love_passionately
I'm a 43 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 45 and 55.
View Profile
sunshinebright
I'm a 55 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 45 and 60.
View Profile
MustLoveDogz
I'm a 33 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 33 and 43.
View Profile
NY25
I'm a 25 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 30.
View Profile
Cymbidium
I'm a 47 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 47 and 60.
View Profile
honkytonkwoman
I'm a 58 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 55 and 64.
View Profile
PhoenixLin
I'm a 32 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 42.
View Profile
Pretty_Nerd
I'm a 28 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 28 and 38.
View Profile
AH1974
I'm a 40 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 40 and 48.
View Profile
Gypsey4Life
I'm a 51 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 50 and 62.
View Profile
Lemoenbloeisel
I'm a 35 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 45.
View Profile
Belind4_M
I'm a 19 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 19 and 30.
View Profile
Jade_242
I'm a 46 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 45 and 55.
View Profile
Abs
I'm a 36 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 36 and 40.
View Profile
findmemyman
I'm a 48 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 50.
View Profile
Vinnette
I'm a 52 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 45 and 55.
View Profile
soutenpepper
I'm a 25 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 37.
View Profile
TenderMoments
I'm a 48 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 45 and 55.
View Profile
supe24
I'm a 34 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 65.
View Profile
Katryn777
I'm a 34 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 34 and 40.
View Profile
devotedlady
I'm a 43 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 43 and 55.
View Profile
iamclassy
I'm a 43 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 50 and 65.
View Profile
thrillsandfrills
I'm a 40 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 41 and 45.
View Profile
Sugababe
I'm a 41 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 32 and 42.
View Profile
LilaBlom
I'm a 23 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 23 and 33.
View Profile
MademoiselleMyGirl
I'm a 30 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 40.
View Profile
veldmuis007
I'm a 33 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 28 and 35.
View Profile
BMull08
I'm a 19 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 19 and 30.
View Profile
kel3
I'm a 31 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 31 and 38.
View Profile
KarooBoereMeisie
I'm a 34 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 40.
View Profile
Roxyxxx
I'm a 43 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 43 and 50.
View Profile
Sosialemeis2
I'm a 28 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 46.
View Profile
sportliefhebber
I'm a 25 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 31.
View Profile
PearlyGem
I'm a 55 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 50 and 60.
View Profile
voelkos
I'm a 54 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 45 and 56.
View Profile
Starlight_001
I'm a 35 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 45.
View Profile
OneWay
I'm a 39 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 47.
View Profile
LuckyCharm_440
I'm a 29 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 29 and 40.
View Profile
Lilakii
I'm a 21 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 20 and 33.
View Profile
Comet43
I'm a 43 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 40 and 54.
View Profile
TLC508
I'm a 45 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 40 and 52.
View Profile
KayBee75
I'm a 39 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 49.
View Profile
Mysong
I'm a 48 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 50 and 55.
View Profile
Lisa_Jayne
I'm a 27 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 23 and 35.
View Profile
twinkle87
I'm a 27 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 28 and 45.
View Profile
itu22
I'm a 22 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 37.
View Profile
naty677
I'm a 28 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 39 and 62.
View Profile
MistressofBrand
I'm a 34 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 34 and 44.
View Profile
JustAnna
I'm a 39 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 55.
View Profile
bon1bon
I'm a 35 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 29 and 40.
View Profile
Gem24
I'm a 24 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 40.
View Profile
FairyLady
I'm a 51 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 47 and 70.
View Profile
Dreamer1987
I'm a 27 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 35.
View Profile
bluemon
I'm a 30 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 45.
View Profile
ThisIsTheRemix
I'm a 33 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 31 and 41.
View Profile
xine_414
I'm a 28 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 35.
View Profile
MrsRobinson
I'm a 37 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 36 and 45.
View Profile
Rarefind
I'm a 54 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 52 and 63.
View Profile
RiaStar
I'm a 35 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 32 and 40.
View Profile
Athena
I'm a 37 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 37 and 45.
View Profile
Foreverinhope
I'm a 48 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 45 and 56.
View Profile
Jimmyhgirl
I'm a 37 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 37 and 55.
View Profile
Duifie038
I'm a 45 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 36 and 50.
View Profile
Cat007
I'm a 46 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 45 and 55.
View Profile
CC82
I'm a 32 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 45.
View Profile
Veronica2477
I'm a 38 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 40 and 50.
View Profile
Carden
I'm a 32 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 24 and 30.
View Profile
RVCZ
I'm a 24 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 18 and 24.
View Profile
Bushbaby210
I'm a 27 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 21 and 35.
View Profile
oth1982
I'm a 32 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 18 and 100.
View Profile
WanderingShadow
I'm a 39 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 20 and 40.
View Profile
DeeeXx
I'm a 31 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 21 and 32.
View Profile
thearchitect1
I'm a 46 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 36 and 70.
View Profile
Liefasb
I'm a 63 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 50 and 60.
View Profile
plodof
I'm a 58 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 55.
View Profile
Free_Spirited
I'm a 45 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 34 and 44.
View Profile
QuietDreamer
I'm a 34 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 29.
View Profile
Ben_57
I'm a 57 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 42 and 55.
View Profile
Pottie16
I'm a 44 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 45.
View Profile
Breukes
I'm a 35 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 26 and 35.
View Profile
OohCharles
I'm a 53 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 45.
View Profile
Abeachboy
I'm a 51 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 38 and 48.
View Profile
Fairtalk101
I'm a 46 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 37.
View Profile
anandr
I'm a 57 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 38 and 65.
View Profile
waitingforgodot
I'm a 68 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 53 and 60.
View Profile
Padriac_1974
I'm a 40 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 45.
View Profile
TheDuke_99
I'm a 36 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 28 and 42.
View Profile
GideonVisser
I'm a 30 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 24 and 29.
View Profile
TheRisingSun
I'm a 41 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 40.
View Profile
Moonrakker
I'm a 64 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 50 and 64.
View Profile
MLACOME0147
I'm a 55 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 49 and 79.
View Profile
Lifechanger_7
I'm a 25 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 18 and 30.
View Profile
Cruisingoldie
I'm a 46 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 50.
View Profile
Teddiebeerpa
I'm a 54 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 50.
View Profile
Kent123
I'm a 54 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 45 and 60.
View Profile
Newdreamz
I'm a 49 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 37 and 46.
View Profile
Duk_880
I'm a 39 year old man looking to meet men between the ages of 20 and 50.
View Profile
Rebelinbluejeans
I'm a 62 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 62.
View Profile
Woody777
I'm a 50 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 55.
View Profile
Espavo
I'm a 50 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 48.
View Profile
matiekat
I'm a 66 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 18 and 100.
View Profile
Marley77
I'm a 37 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 28 and 35.
View Profile
Gerrie1
I'm a 67 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 50 and 60.
View Profile
koolstoof55
I'm a 59 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 45 and 63.
View Profile
TheRealPeterPan
I'm a 35 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 28 and 35.
View Profile
Parmos1
I'm a 64 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 55 and 63.
View Profile
letslook
I'm a 46 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 45.
View Profile
Brad88
I'm a 52 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 45 and 60.
View Profile
FeaturedProfile
I'm a 54 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 54.
View Profile
boersoekvrou14
I'm a 39 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 42.
View Profile
M0J0
I'm a 34 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 23 and 35.
View Profile
srchinluv
I'm a 52 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 46 and 65.
View Profile
softtail
I'm a 50 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 48.
View Profile
bellagio
I'm a 69 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 55 and 65.
View Profile
GenuineJ
I'm a 64 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 48 and 64.
View Profile
Thebestone1
I'm a 57 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 48.
View Profile
skyandsand
I'm a 31 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 35.
View Profile
MysticKitesurfer
I'm a 43 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 27 and 36.
View Profile
PaulA79
I'm a 35 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 40.
View Profile
Double_N
I'm a 41 year old man looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 50.
View Profile
happymaker66
I'm a 48 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 45.
View Profile
LEO1982
I'm a 32 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 24 and 40.
View Profile
Pete_1
I'm a 70 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 55 and 65.
View Profile
gentlebutcrazy
I'm a 58 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 55.
View Profile
Gster1
I'm a 64 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 45 and 60.
View Profile
Rumrun
I'm a 56 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 44 and 56.
View Profile
heartroll
I'm a 54 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 49 and 60.
View Profile
arew
I'm a 49 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 55.
View Profile
Stressfree
I'm a 58 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 42 and 52.
View Profile
PerfectGentleman_700
I'm a 36 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 39.
View Profile
saks001
I'm a 61 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 49 and 60.
View Profile
audiess
I'm a 50 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 39 and 64.
View Profile
B_B_B
I'm a 43 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 18 and 45.
View Profile
Summerstorm_007
I'm a 60 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 48 and 58.
View Profile
JustCallMeBwana
I'm a 47 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 28 and 38.
View Profile
shadowwarrior
I'm a 59 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 38 and 55.
View Profile
cloudhopper
I'm a 56 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 45 and 55.
View Profile
ch_nb
I'm a 28 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 18 and 45.
View Profile
longingforu
I'm a 35 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 18 and 38.
View Profile
tigercat
I'm a 54 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 22 and 54.
View Profile
LiveLifeAlways
I'm a 43 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 33 and 41.
View Profile
ekke_706
I'm a 50 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 55.
View Profile
philip_unplugged514
I'm a 62 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 50 and 65.
View Profile
Eugene053
I'm a 54 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 45.
View Profile
Virion
I'm a 30 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 33.
View Profile
BobTheExtremeBuilder
I'm a 47 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 47.
View Profile
IceDad66
I'm a 48 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 45.
View Profile
Determined_69
I'm a 45 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 47.
View Profile
WagOngeduldig
I'm a 41 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 45.
View Profile
rossi46
I'm a 66 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 55 and 65.
View Profile
Mais_171
I'm a 49 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 55.
View Profile
DoctorSpin
I'm a 41 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 45.
View Profile
Dreamzzz
I'm a 48 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 45.
View Profile
thesaltofthesea
I'm a 45 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 50.
View Profile
LoveFriendFirst123
I'm a 56 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 50 and 72.
View Profile
Geard1977
I'm a 37 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 26 and 40.
View Profile
chester3
I'm a 54 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 49 and 76.
View Profile
Kawa1000
I'm a 49 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 50.
View Profile
CapeLover
I'm a 49 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 41 and 50.
View Profile
cornrlius205
I'm a 46 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 50.
View Profile
Jurgy62
I'm a 52 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 37 and 55.
View Profile
Rich_H
I'm a 48 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 48.
View Profile
JustJve99
I'm a 47 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 45.
View Profile
Boereman
I'm a 52 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 52.
View Profile

Business Directory