Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Marrying One's Cousin in Oman, and Pepsi Babies

Because of a comment I read on JD's blog, I wanted to touch on the topic of marrying one's cousins.

Unless my future children are totally adamantly, defiantly in love with one of their Omani cousins, and that cousin they are in love with is a good Muslim AND a good person (they should be intertwined, one meaning the other but one can be culturally Islamic and a horrible personage at the same time in my experience), and then, and only then, if they have a blood test first, and it makes them medically compatible, well... other than that, I won't let them marry their cousins. Or be familially pressured into marrying their cousins.

Why? when I adore most of their potential cousins? When I love my family? and think them good, and actually accept the practice as halal in Islam?

Because sometimes, the children inherit genetic diseases, especially blood disorders, more often, when they are genetically linked. And it isn't a very big issue for me. My husband was born from parents who were cousins, and most of my Omani, Saudi, Emerati, Qatari, Bahraini friends are too. It isn't a big deal to me, but I think it is better to NOT to. Medically.

Contrary to what alot of expats think, not everyone who marries their cousins are gonna end up with special needs children. It just doesn't happen like that. For example, my Omani family. The only genetically inherent disease they seem to manifest from stubbornly marrying only in the family is bleeding gum. I mean, uber sensitive teeth. The ones that married distant cousins from far away villages don't have this problem in their children. But imagine if it were something worse than sensitive teeth. Like blood disorders, such as sickle-cell anemia.

I was reading a book on the history of the interior region of the Sultanate from an early expat voice on Oman and was highly offended when the author referred to people from the interior as warring imbreds.

Since not all cousin babies end up in trouble at all. There are ALOT of medical factors. I know, it is one thing to do with my work in IRL;)

But then, now after my opinions on the subject, there is one other thought in my head. A conversation between my sister in law and I of late.

Now, if she ever reads this, my SIL will figure out RIGHT AWAY who I am in IRL. Hi! My Big Omani Princess;P [BOP].

Anyways, SIL BOP and I were talking about something TOTALLY UNRELATED to anything or anyone imbred. We were talking about ow unhealthy Pepsi is. Or, well BOP was, since MOP [my Omani Prince aka my husband] is also on this bandwagon and they want me to stop drinking alot of caffeine.

I spoke in defence of the occasional can of pepsi. I know it rots my teeth out, but I do not think the powers attributed to it by BOP canbe actually manifest.

BOP: "Once a month is totally okay. But I knew a girl from Nizwa who drank only Pepsi during her preganancy, and her baby was born with deformities."

OPNO: "So you blame the Pepsi?"

BOP: "Of course."

OPNO: "I think it had more to do with them being cousins."

Sorry, Cousin Marriages, but I had to say that in defence of my occasional can of Pepsi. I really can't do the "dew" and orange miranda stains my teeth sooooo... LOL.

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