Najva_SolIn a groundbreaking new book, 25 Muslim American women writers tell their own stories of love. Giving hope to many young girls who fear they will never be accepted, ‘Love, InshAllah: The Secret Love Lives of Muslim American Women’ (Love, God Willing), was released on Tuesday to coincide with Valentine’s Day and was put together after entries were initially posted on Facebook and other social networking websites.

Iranian American Najva Sol, recounts her own story of rejecting Islam and coming out as a lesbian to her parents. In the book Sol describes the moment she chose to reveal all to her parents, with a surprising outcome.

Growing up with her strictly Muslim parents in Rockville, Maryland, Sol was not allowed to go to parties or watch cable television.  However like most teenagers, she rebelled and embraced the ‘Western’ lifestyle her parents had tried to keep her from.

Choosing the moment to reveal that she was gay to them three years ago in a Rockville coffee shop, Sol discovered her parents still fully accept her despite their different beliefs.

Asking if she could be a good daughter and a good person even if she was gay, her parents replied: ‘Yes’.

The book’s co-editor Nura Maznavi, 33, told the Washington Post that it should hopefully dispel some stereotypes about Muslims.

She said: ‘Muslim women are either belly-dancing members of a harem, reduced to body parts that someone else controls, or shrouded in black cloth with no desire and having no sex.

‘The truth is that like all women, we feel and love and have heartbreak.’

Sol said:  ‘… For 15 years, I have been afraid there is not enough room in my parents’ hearts, in my family, my Iran, or my religion, for my truth.

‘Who knew how elastic parents can be?’

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