Misogyny. Self-Preservation. A Whirlwind Romance. What Asylum Advocates Refuse to Accept
Look at what she did! She is a big problem! Are you seeing this! Get her out! If you took a glance at Dominant Woman: The Effects of Masculine Energy on Male Romantic Partners, you might utter these statements too. One can only imagine what the asylum seekers at Kinsale Road Accommodation Centre, who appropriated this preliminary investigation from my computer, voiced to a legion of refugee advocate services and politicians in Ireland to fit their narrative. Most asylum advocates do not understand that there is an ugly truth behind my direct provision research paper. This paper tells you what. It also answers why.
Before I delve into the idea behind Dominant Woman, and how it led to Out of the Miqlaatun into the Fire: the Shariazation of Ireland’s Direct Provision Institution and its Impact on Transgender Asylum Seekers, I need to issue a disclaimer. I am not on the left, nor am I on the right. Further, this article is not intended to incite violence against immigrant men, nor is this a call-to-action to anti-immigrant groups to mete out hate against any immigrant men in direct provision, as I explicitly condemn the use of hate and violence to remedy any issue.
Next, it is expected that my opponents will, either now, or sometime in the future, circulate images of my having a conversation with pro-Irish advocates a few weeks ago. They may even spin that conversation into a macabre encounter. However, much respect is given to the pro-Irish men who challenged me on my worldview, articulated their perspective, and did not make outlandish assumptions about who I really am (at least, not to my face), and vice versa.
Why Dominant Woman Happened – The Ugly Truth Behind My Direct Provision Research Paper
Dominant woman happened because there was abusive behaviour against women and LGBT asylum seekers when I arrived at the Balseskin Reception Centre (“BRC”). BRC, in the earlier stages, was like being inside the Big Brother house. It was coed and communal living, which is quite different from residing in a shelter or an apartment. Indeed, if one wink twice, direct provision could have been mistaken for a college dormitory. I had never lived on one. Thus, my intention was to remove the gravity and distress out of the experience by treating it as a dormitory. But this would change after I found myself constantly being mistreated for being too altruistic. Indeed, I was pathologically altruistic. This is not an indication that I am infallible, or that I have never made mistakes. Indeed, I uploaded a list of foolish things I have done in my life. Nonetheless, this is a true reflection of what I observed happening while living in that particular centre.
As I discuss in my research paper, asylum seekers in Direct Provision are thought to share a common immigrational and parallel experience. From this detail, it could be said that members of the LGBT community enter Direct Provision under the blind assumption that it is an environment where one can create an empirical bond with the community. Even more so for persecuted members of the community. It first appeared as if one could create an empirical bond there. For instance, male asylum seekers would approach me and asked me to teach them English. But I soon learned this was a code name for sex. It cannot be denied that the need for closeness and sexual intimacy is a naturalistic need of human existence. However, when men in direct provision feign to befriend you, feign to accept you, and feign to love women and LGBT persons in order to extort money, obtain a Refugee Declaration (which often happens), and gain absolute power, this undoubtedly led to the ugly truth behind my direct provision research paper.
My opponents will argue that I have a checkered past, never been honest about who ‘they believe I really am’, and that I have taken shortcuts in my personal life that go beyond what is unethical and immoral. Indeed, the same argument can be shifted back to them:
1. Many men in direct provision do not tell women or LGBT individuals they are married. While infidelity happens all the time (not pot calling the kettle black here), men cannot hide this vital detail and cry foul when others do the same.
2. Many men in direct provision use the LGBT ground to gain asylum when they are not LGBT, and
3. Some, not all, cannot be identified because some come from third-world countries that do not have comprehensive database.
On reflection, it seems more accurate to say that no one in direct provision should point the finger at someone for unethical or immoral behaviour. The truth of the matter is that I tried to enter direct provision with an open mind and to see the good in everyone. However, it was clear most male asylum seekers did not. In reality, many still do not. For instance, those that I protect in my research were often called a Bit**! Slu*! Wh***!” I speak from first-hand knowledge. It happened to a Canadian female asylum seeker who had to post a sign on her door that instructed, “No S**! No Marriage!” The mistreatment became so uncomfortable that I donned a hijab just to gain some respect. A Palestinian woman, “Siba”, who tried to free herself from the hijab at Balseskin was coerced back into it after being called a b*t!h. Moreover, my Pakistani comrade, “Mithra,” also put their gender expression back on the top shelf out of the fear of being policed on moral grounds. What also brought me to the ground is when I watched, with my own eyes, my Nigerian friend, “Memory”, fall into a s** scam. Watched her fragment into pieces. An email is welcomed from any NGO, organisation or politician who thinks any of the victims mentioned here are a figment of the imagination. A discussion with all the victims at the table is also welcomed. I was too protective of Siba, Mithra, and Memory.
The most interesting thing about Out of the Miqlaatun into the Fire is not one person asked me why? They had every opportunity. For example, I posted a debate on the community board at Kinsale Road Accommodation Centre welcoming any asylum seeker to a respectful debate of their choosing. No one accepted the offer. Not once. Refugee advocate services and other organisations had space to ask why, but declined to, as they had already made up their mind. Look at what she did! She is a big problem! Are you seeing this! Get her out!
Not once did any of these organisations, including organisations of my own ethnicity ask the question: why? What is the reason behind your behaviour? The asylum seekers who stole the paper had a template in front of them. A critical view of the template clearly showed it was incomplete. So why didn’t anyone ask: why? Maybe these organisations felt they would have gotten a dishonest answer in return. Or, they didn’t want to hear the truth—what so many people have been saying for years. Hearing it come from me, someone who has been branded with the Scarlett letter sounded unbelievable. Or, it sounded too believable and was too real to consider. The answer to why is: a role of dominance had been thrusted upon us for so long by men in direct provision. The why was to feel safe again. The why, initially of course, was to wear the skin of men. The why was so that dominance would feel familiar to men. That is why. Bit*h, wh*re, sl*t was born out of submissiveness. Submission in direct provision could break you. It definitely broke me. To be sure, in 2019, The Journal published a story about Aisha, a woman living in direct provision, who was repeatedly harassed and propositioned by other asylum-seekers. So, why didn’t men in direct provision have to carry this baby to term? At least, for once?
Instead of asking why, authority figures condoned a community placing me on an island. It also condoned the taking of my personal property, the ostracism, the harassment, the uploading my personal information to the internet, the making me feel like the devil, the fake friendships, and the disingenuous relationships that would go to undermine my full potential. It was all condoned. I cannot help but wonder if it was being done to protect a Middle Eastern man at BRC, who seemed to gain nearly 1,000 protectors in the flesh. As he told me once before, most people will believe him over me because he comes from a war-torn country. Today, his words remain true.
The Middle Eastern man would eventually ask me for my number. My initial response was “no.” But I knew what my friends would say, “live a little! Don’t be too up tight! Have fun! You only live once!” You have one life. Just one life. So, I gave the Middle Eastern man my number. He was reserved and knew very little English. Our mode of communication was via Google translate. After he discovered MASI was donating computers to asylum seekers, I wrote a letter on his behalf so that he could communicate with his family.
During one of our conversations, he disclosed to me that he cheated on previous partners. Although he was inconsistent at times, enjoyed being first—always—played cat-and-mouse games, played hard-to-get, was non-committal, and had a superficial view towards women, I had a lot of respect for him. It was after he disclosed that he cheated on women to me. He showed me a glimpse of the truth through the sliver of his conceitedness. Most men wouldn’t have admitted to being a cheater. Here was some truth. It meant something to me, even if it meant little to anyone else. Over the weeks the Middle Eastern man created an environment of uncertainty. So, in return, I created an environment of uncertainty too. I had this grand idea of unfairly accusing him of having sexual intercourse, whether I had the evidence or not. Indeed, several of the men in direct provision, including him, had unfairly accused women of being who*es and sl*ts based on what they wore, whether they had the evidence or not. In hindsight, such an accusation would have given him an ego boost. It was a grant of power. So, I gave him power in the submissive phase. When he pulled back, I pulled back. I ignored him when I saw him in the courtyard on the withdrawal phase. Whether anyone wants to believe it or not, this is the ugly truth behind my direct provision research paper. This prompted a text with an apology, “and remember that you are the first friend.” He was negotiating his way around my firewalls. He was decoding me. He had torn down the barriers I had tried to build through the Dominant Woman. The fact that he saw me as a friend struck a chord. It was at this very moment I made the decision to disclose Dominant Woman to him. Then, I disclosed it to the others.
The Middle Eastern man and I would eventually transfer to different accommodation centres, which left me heartbroken. I did my best to avoid him on the day of transfer, so as to keep from crying. It was happening again, another separation. However, what the asylum seekers at Kinsale Road Accommodation Centre, and their powerful contacts continue to conceal is: I truly loved the Middle Eastern man. I had loved others before him. I even had love for a security guard, ‘Maurice O’Sullivan,’ at the Kinsale Road Accommodation Centre who I had little in common with but mindfulness. This wasn’t romantic love. It was based on friendship and mutual interest. Nonetheless, I needed to remember to “Love yourself.” In order to end the pain, I must “love myself.” Indeed, a wise asylum seeker instructed me to “put all your love in yourself.” That was the most profound advice anyone has ever given me in my life. It cannot be denied that I lived a pretty questionable life. But when I love someone, I love them. Now, I had to love myself.
Referring back to the Middle Eastern man: I got a call in 2021. The Middle Eastern man said that he really missed me. He asked if I wanted to be his girlfriend and, if I wanted to move in with him. I didn’t hesitate. It was like a marriage proposal. “Yes!” I told him. In the background, logical people cautioned, “you’re moving too fast!” They also said, “shouldn’t you know more about him before you move in with him?” But, you only live once! I had always wanted to live a domesticated life and the Middle Eastern man was giving me that opportunity. Carpe diem!
The Middle Eastern man had attempted to move on his own to Dublin, but the International Protection Accommodation Service (“IPAS”) declined his transfer. He then asked if I could get us moved. He knew I had a bit of experience in technical writing, as it was my technical writing that resulted in his laptop. So, I corresponded with IPAS, on several occasions, until they relocated us. IPAS eventually moved us together.
After 30 days, we both petitioned IPAS to move to different centres due to serious irreconcilable differences in the home, what everyone knew would happen. The Middle Eastern man and I included. Maybe it was all part of their plan. At any rate, he and I both made some dumb mistakes. However, I am the only one with 1,000+ people planning my demise and seeing to it that I fail. We cannot deny that a why could have been the key that answered so many questions. However, I do not believe my actions warranted placing me on an island, gaslighting me, stealing my USB, stealing my personal post, engaging in continued harassment, the uploading my personal information to the internet, the making me feel like the devil, the fake friendships and relationships that evaporated in a sky of disingenuity, or the treating me like a non-human being by organisations that could not muster the word why. That’s the ugly truth behind my direct provision research paper.