“It’s your fault if you enjoy your sexuality”

Not only is Rana Alamuddin not afraid to talk about sex, but she’s also urging women in the Arab world to follow her example.

The actress, producer and director is of Lebanese descent, but was born in New York. Behind him is work on productions such as “Sex and the City 2”, which takes place in the United Arab Emirates, as well as “From the crime scene: Miami” and “The Young and the Restless”.

Now Rana wants to use her popularity to encourage Arab women not to be ashamed of their sexuality.

“I finally found the role of my life – to unite women in a kind of sisterhood that keeps them away from public shame and condemnation,” Alamuddin said in a specially recorded video for CNN.

In it, she specifies that Arab women are born in shame, raised in shame, and learn to live in shame.

“This shame, it takes all our breath,” the actress continues in the clip. She also recalls that women’s reputation and especially women’s virginity are key to the honor of the entire family in the Arab world.

“It’s your fault if you feel comfortable in your body. It’s your fault if you enjoy your sexuality. It’s your fault if you feel strong,” says Rana, who in some shots is dressed in a sports outfit of tank top and leggings of exotic flowers.

“If we remove this stigma about women’s honor, women will be free,” she is emphatic.

Her campaign will run under the hashtag #IForgiveMyself – I forgive myself. Rana wants to encourage women, and especially women from the Arab world, to write on their bodies what they forgive themselves for, and responses with the same hashtag on social networks were not long in coming.

“I forgive myself for not feeling safe with my femininity,” wrote Beirut influencer Yal Solan on her cleavage.

“I’m sorry for hiding my body,” another user posted, but her face and identity remain hidden.

“I forgive myself for not raising my voice at a time when I should have screamed,” another anonymous user added to the photo.

“I am so proud of this movement”, Alamuddin does not hide his admiration. She is convinced that healing is not a lonely journey and that the campaign has helped her a lot.

The movement is far from focusing solely on the sexuality of women in the Arab world. One of the ladies standing openly in front of Rana’s lens is Dareen Barbar, a world record holder for wall squatting with a leg amputee.

Dareen is a sportswoman, an athlete, a fitness instructor, but also a woman who has had a hard time finding her place in society because of her amputation.

She admits that in her native Lebanon, people with amputated limbs are often seen as weak and helpless beings, so when she heard about Rana Alamuddin’s campaign, she quickly got involved.

“I forgive myself for trying to prove to the world that I’m a normal human being,” Darrin writes on his leg. Barbar doesn’t hide that she spent years trying to hide her prosthesis and not show that she too has dreams and ambitions.

“Now I love and accept my body and realize that every beauty is different,” the athlete wrote on Instagram.

“There is still injustice in our world – you’re either a good girl or you’re a slut. You’re either a girl that men just want to have fun with, or you become a wife,” continues Rana herself in her video.

“I want women to be able to talk about everything,” she emphasizes.

This includes cases of sexual violence, discussions about wearing the hijab, questions about women’s bodies, about women’s dreams, about women’s mental problems.

Alamuddin cautions that this is just the beginning of her campaign and will do her best to promote her #IForgiveMyself hashtag.


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