Personal Space

I don't think this phrase exists in Egypt, at all. It's not actually only about leaving a space between you and the person in front of you in the queue in order to not invade their personal space. Personal space is not only the tangible space that many are always trying to invade, hence sexual harassment and other things. There is also the intangible personal space, and invading it is done even more, and invading it is even worse!

  • Oh my God, you're not married yet!
  • Or even worse: I want you to get married right now so I can see your kids.
  • Get a respectable job!
  • You spend too much on the wrong things, you have to save most of your earnings
  • You shouldn't wear this
  • You shouldn't talk to them
  • You shouldn't say that
  • You shouldn't think that way
  • You spend too much time on the phone/online
  • Your clothes are ugly
  • You've become too thin, gain some weight/ you've become too fat, lose some weight
  • You should wake up early
  • You should not travel that often
  •  You should not travel alone
  • You should work on this, but not that
  • You should be closer to God
  • You deserve a better a partner.
.... Or they might be questions

  • What do you plan to do in ten years?
  • When are you finishing this or that?
  • Even, where do you live?
  • Why aren't you eating this or that?
  • What is it you see in him or her?
  • Why have you decided to move out?
  • Why did you break up/get a divorce?
  • When are you going to have children?/ Why don't you have any children?
  • Why didn't you ever get married?

And the invasion never ends. The above comments and questions are considered an invasion of your personal space or not depending on who says/asks them. Also depending on whether you're open to answering or not. Those who intervene are not necessarily doing it out of being mean, it might be out of goodwill, nevertheless it's still an intervention that might not be acceptable to everyone. There is a difference between a piece of advice from a close enough person who knows that their advice would be acceptable and someone who just intervenes without your permission. Also an advice is said once and the decision is left to you, invading your personal space does not stop. I don't know of any solution to stop this invasion except saying that you don't accept it. And whether you say it nicely or rudely, some will still be very angry, especially if they're an old person who thinks that they know your life better than you do. What I know is that one should not accept this invasion, if they don't like it, whatever happens. Also if you find yourself invading somebody else's personal space, because we all do at times, please refrain from doing so. Always remember that you might not be happy if you were the victim!


  1. i understand your point, but what about
    "كُنْتُمْ خَيْرَ أُمَّةٍ أُخْرِجَتْ لِلنَّاسِ تَأْمُرُونَ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَتَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ الْمُنكَرِ وَتُؤْمِنُونَ بِاللَّهِ"
    is this some kind of invasion to the one space ? what is the line ?

  2. This should be an advice, and in my opinion if this person's advice is not welcomed, then yes it is an invasion. The line is whether the person opens up to the advice or not. Plus personally, I think the best way someone could do this is by doing the right action himself and being a good example to the society instead of just talking.

  3. An advice is called for, what these people are doing is stating their opinion. And they have no right to do so, unless you clearly asked what to do about such a topic (choose any from the above mentioned). I have been accused of being rude and anti-social because I dont give out every single little detail of my life to everyone around me. And you know what? I don't give a damn. Life gets complicated when there are too many players. All you have to do is kindly shrug, and say "insha allah". Give a smile and part ways. If you do this EVERY time they invade your privacy, they will get the picture sooner or later. Keep them busy with petty things like soap operas and such imaginative t.v. shows and then they might be too busy to interfere in your life. And sometimes, you just have to downright put your foot down. I know many people think it is "being social" and striking up conversation, but... you can always change the subject. There is no need in bending down to their very invasive interrogations. Be polite, smile, and say as little as possible. Just be ready to be called the black sheep! Oh, and you might end up with VERY few friends after that....there are some who are too petty and will have temper tantrums because you dont tell them every little secret. So what? They were never your friend to begin with if they think like that.

  4. Very true! I will try that. And I actually don't care if I lose people who don't care about my feelings and invade my privacy as if it were a public property. You're totally right, thank you =).


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