There is a Hadith from Ma’qil ibn Yasar, saying; The Prophet (Peace and blessings be upon him) said, “It is better for you to be stabbed in the head with an iron needle than to touch the hand of a woman who is not permissible to you.”
In this generation it is very difficult to stick to what you believe in since the majority of the people just ‘go with the flow’. And it’s more challenging to stick to what you believe in if everyone is attacking you from all directions.
The best advice my dad ever gave me was to ‘stick to what is right even if the world stood against you.’ This advice has helped me in many situations. And one of them was this.
I will not lie, there was a time in my life where it shook me and came across the idea of giving up this belief and start handshaking guys from the amount of criticism I was attacked by. But this was when my dad’s advice came to use. I stopped caring what people said or thought about me. Like seriously I didn’t. So what if they said I was ‘too strict’ so what if they said I was ‘too religious’ so what if they said I was ‘too complex’. SO WHAT?
Who are they to judge me?
Who are they to tell me what I’m not?
Do they even know me? No.
Do they even matter to me? No.
Then why care?
Anyway, so it doesn’t really matter what people think of us but if you were put in such a situation, here are some recommendations on how you can handle it.
Bonbon solution: Many of us have heard about this trick – where girls have those little candies in their pockets. As soon as a guy extends his arm to handshake, she just takes out a bonbon and puts it in his hand and says I don’t shake hands. Problem solved. No embarrassment, no awkwardness, nothing.
Another trick is if you’re a business woman; instead of candy replace it with a business card. Seems more professional and suitable in that situation.
Friend alert solution: What I usually do is if I’m around a group of friends and this guy enters the group and starts handshaking everyone. Before my turn comes, I tell my friend to tell him that I don’t handshake in a very polite way. So when my friend’s turn comes. He/she stays holding their hand and tells them ‘by the way she doesn’t shake hands’. This way the ‘embarrassing moment for them’ has been avoided.
Hands Busy solution: Just carry everything in your hands! Books, papers, phone, water bottle, your cat, anything. This way you won’t even have to tell him that you don’t shake hands.
Eye contact solution: If there is a stranger that entered the group and he’s shaking hands with everyone I just avoid eye contact with him. I don’t look at him at all. I look at the ceiling, the floor, my phone, my shoes, my friend etc. That way he won’t extend his hand in the first place since it appears as if I am distracted by something else or I’m blind not to notice his presence.
Just ‘say it’ solution: When a guy extends his arm and none of the above solutions can be applied I just say “Sorry, I don’t shake hands”. It usually takes a confident and strong person to do that since most girls are too shy to do so. Most girls that end up shaking hands are too shy to reject it, since they don’t want to embarrass the individual in front of them.
Honestly, I don’t find it embarrassing to reject a handshake in a polite manner. But then at the end of the day maybe because I got so used to rejecting handshakes where it became very normal for me to watch the same face expressions…
It’s not something I’m afraid to do or something embarrassing. In fact it’s something I’m fully proud of. It forces the people to respect me, even if they don’t like me. And that’s all I ever cared about. Respect.
Plus, you can tell a lot about a person from simply this action. Whether the person respects other people’s beliefs or whether the person will criticize and attack other people’s beliefs.
For instance, if I reject person A’s hand, he might get all embarrassed about it. And his face expression turns into a frown. And maybe to make him feel better he might throw a comment like “why don’t you handshake anyway? Why do you make such a big deal out of it?”
However, person B – “no problem” – “that’s good” – “I respect you!”
Person B is the type of person I’d love to interact with since he respects my belief and encourages me to continue.
It is YOUR choice, YOUR right, YOUR belief. Nobody can argue with that. It takes a very strong person to stick to their beliefs. Be one of those people. There is nothing to be afraid of.
من ترك شيئا لله عوضه الله خيرا منه
If you have any other suggestions/solutions comment in the box below!