To many of you this may seem like just another dumb western girl’s story of falling for the charms of an Egyptian man, but we would just like to hear what you have to say, especially if there are any Egyptian men out there who could give us an honest opinion.
I write this on behalf of a friend of mine who is unable to post this herself.
Anyway, the story goes … my friend travelled to Egypt in November last year and met her man, he is a tour guide from Cairo, from a very respectable family he is married to a foreign (muslim) girl whom he has a young child with. His wife apparently is not happy in Egypt and it causes problems between them.
My friend fell in love with the tour guide, they spent time together before she left, they attempted to get married but could not find a lawyer to do this before she left.
She returned to her home country they kept in contact almost daily, she claims she would rather die than be without him, and he tells her that he feels the same way.
My friend returned to Egypt two weeks ago, her man met her at the airport, put a diamond ring on her finger and they were married (Orfi) immediately. He paid the lawyer LE5000 for this (which seems a lot more than most other people on these forums talk about) and they had two witnesses (not including the lawyer). He then took her for a week long honeymoon to a 5 star resort near the sea. They returned to Cairo and she is now living in a large apartment which he has rented for her, she has everything she could possibly want.
I am concerned for my friend - she may be being ripped off by this guy, although I have met him also and he didn’t seem like many of the men who are discussed on these forums. He is kind and gentle, very generous and does seem to genuinely love my friend very much. He has paid for everything since she has returned to Egypt from her mobile phone, to her groceries and everything since he considers her to be his wife and therefore his responsibility, although Orfi does not assume any financial obligations?
Are Orfi marriages just for Egyptians and foreigners? We’ve also seen on this forum that they are common between students and teachers and teenagers!
Also on the marriedtoanarab site indicates that Orfi is more commonplace in Egyptian society than we initially thought.
He has told some of his friends about this marriage, so it is not a huge secret.
He is not interested in leaving Egypt – he does not want her for her passport or her money or, as far as I know any bodily organs! He treats her very well and keeps stating that she is his responsibility.
He claims that he has finally found someone he loves who he has been looking for all his life. My friend and her bloke are both 33. He will not divorce his wife because he is scared of losing contact with his child – and I imagine the shame (would this be correct?).
This man wants to have children with my friend. From reading on your forum we see that these children have no legal rights, she says the Orfi marriage contract was read to her and that it stated that any children would be legal and that the husband would be responsible for them.
He is also keen for my friend to convert to Islam although he says he will never force her to do so.
Any thoughts people? Does every story have to have an unhappy ending? I hope not.
seems to me that this is not one of the ripp-off cases. I guess he married her orfi, because like this his first wife will never know. If they got married at the civil court, they would send an official notifcation to his first wife.
But I wonder: though it is allowed for a muslim man to marry up to 4 wives, (with certain conditions.) A marriage is a relationship for life, better or worse, and he would not want to hurt the feelings of his first wife, or lose her respect, by another marriage in secret? Oh well, his friends know, they won't tell his first wife. But about his family? do they know and agree? does your friend have contact with them?
the danger with orfi is only if the husband has access to both original contracts and decides one day he wants to get out of this marriage, he can cut the papers and it is as if they had never been married. Even if the woman has her original contract, and thus the law is on her side - in real life it would be still very difficult to sue the man for childsupport etc.
Does your friend keep in mind, that maybe the man will one day make up with his first wife and get together stronger than ever - then where your friend will be?
The point about his family would be very interesting, could you tell us more next time?
how old is the child? the husband gets custody of the children, not the wife....she may have temporary custody up to a certain age..then they go to the father.
no, this doesn't sound like a typical story from this forum, but it does sound typical. there's plenty of rich men in cairo who keep their girlfriends (that they marry orfi) driving new cars, pay for their flats, etc.
his first wife would never accept that he marry a 2nd wife if she's from a certain class/from reputable family/etc. if she's just given him a child. it would be a big scandal and her family and his family would pressure him into either dropping your friend or divorcing his first wife.
sorry but if this guy was truly on the up-and-up...he'd just divorce his first wife and would marry your friend legitimately.
he's getting the best of both worlds.
if your friend is happy, let it be. but if she thinks this happily ever after....er...she might be in for a shock in a few years.
if i were you, i'd simply advise her to protect herself as her marriage is not recognized -- if his first wife doesn't know about her, then it's a secret marriage.
thanks for the additional information. It looks to me that this relationship is very comfortable to this man, like living two different lives, whereas your friend is the lucky one who at least knows about the other part. He may or may not be truly in love with your friend, however that he did not marry her 'officially' itself is already a reason .. not to worry, but to be careful.
Sounds like rich man wants to have it all. I don't like the sound of: "they spent some time together, then tried to get married." That is called adultery and throws a big shadow on the character of this man, who asks other to submit to Islam, while he is not exactly the good example of a muslim man. It is good that she has the originals, ask her to keep them at a safe and secret place.
I do wonder, how does your friend feel, knowing that there is another woman with a very young baby from this man, and her MISTAKE is, that she found out she is not happy living in Egypt, and he is betraying her trust, respect and committment by marrying somebody else in secret. Does she ever wonder how the other woman feels, or would feel, if she found out?
the custody for young children is normally with the mother (if she is a Muslim, Christian or Jew) and committs to raise her children as Muslims in Egypt, for muslim children 10 yrs. for boys (up to 15) and 12 yrs. for girls (up to marriage).
A mother may have the custody, but not the right to take her children outside Egypt, and I want to give your friends husband the benefit of thinking that he may be concerned that the mother may kidnap the baby and leave Egypt if he divorces her.
If the mother marries again, the custody goes back automatically to the Egypt. father.
I'm not with exptincai, that the man could simply divorce his first wife, a marriage is no business contract, that can just be cancelled, people committed and get hurt, and a child's future is at stake.
Personally I want to add that if they had been fighting the last few months or so, his first wife was pregnant in this time, and pregnant women feel very vulnerable and emotionally out of balance (or maybe that was just me?), it is easy to make them cry and it is easy to pick a fight.. more tenderness and support should be expected from a husband in this time, then the bodily changes, maybe he felt she is not attractive with her big belly, maybe it was difficult for her to cope with pregnancy, giving birth and being a mother 'suddenly'?
I do wonder, if your friend would become pregnant one day, how he will treat her? Always in the treatment of a man to his first wife lies the lesson to be learned for the second wife.
but Allahu alam, I would not want to do anybody injustice, as usual, it is only my own personal point of view.
tourist goes on holiday and within 1 or 2 weeks "fall in love" with tour guide, they keep in touch, she returns, he "marries" her with orfi paper that allows them to reside at the flat he rented and with this paper can drop in and visit her when it suits her.
He takes her on "honeymoon" and abandons his wife and baby to do this. Not forgetting claiming to pay LE5000 to a lawyer. But if he tells that to his tourist wife, she'll be impressed by such extravagence and feel more worthy.
He's unhappily married but has baby under a year old with his real wife, who he must have got on well with in past 2 years to have been intimate with to create said baby.
Some of his friends know about this "marriage" probably the same friends who have also fell in love with the tourist of their dreams wihtin the week and have secret "marriages". They all cover for each other and know each others business.
He lies about money, cheats on his wife, abandons his fatherly duty to his baby to have sex with a woman who thinks she is his wife.
His family probably don't know about her and probably never will. Is the "marital" flat in different part of town from his family and wife? so that they will never bump into each other or rumours don't spread?
It sounds a nice set-up for him and if he tells her the truth and she still wants to be a part time wife to him and knows that he is an unfaithful liar to his innocent wife and baby, and her conscience doesn't have a problem with that, great!