By ADEEBA SANNA ZAHOOR
Noreen Khan is a hugely popular radio and TV presenter. She currently takes the much sought after drive time slot at the BBC’s Asian Network radio station. She balances that with being a business woman, having her own accessories and clothing line and has recently started her Noreen Khan – OFF MIC vlog. Having always had a passion for music, Noreen knew she was destined for the music industry, and after volunteering at her local hospital radio show when she was younger, she knew this is where she wanted to be. And here she is, chatting to Asian Style Magazine on the topic of her latest vlog last week: “Why aren’t you married yet?”.
Welcome Noreen, you mention in your Vlog that people send you messages frequently asking you when you will be getting married etc, however, do you also get pressure from your family or do they have the same viewpoint and understanding as yourself?
I’m very fortunate that my parents and family have never pressurised me about marriage. My mum is very open minded and totally understands where I’m coming from and simply says ‘Noreen when the time is right it will happen for you, I’m not worried that you’re single’. I’m very lucky I have very cool parents!
What gives you the strength to ignore pressure, considering you’re a public figure and therefore asked these questions many times, as you say in your video?
I’ve always been mentally very strong which I get from my parents so I’m never really phased by much. The constant marriage questions have never bothered me much and luckily I can brush it off. Plus my life is very busy so I don’t have time to let it affect me!
Would you feel incomplete if you didn’t marry?
Hard to say as I’ve not decided I don’t want to marry, ask me in 10 years if I’m still single.
Why do you think women are marrying later now than ever before?
Because we have more choices meaning we want to pursue careers, travel and do things so marriage isn’t at the top of our agenda.
What about those women who don’t have a successful career to fall back on like yourself? A lot of women are seen as either housewives or career women, if you fall into neither of these brackets, what do you suggest one’s focus could be?
I suggest you focus on things that are positive in your life and try to do things that make you happy. Again we are so conditioned to believe if you don’t have this that or the other you can’t be happy or complete.
Do you think there is a greater pressure on women rather than men to marry by as certain age and if so why?
There’s definitely more pressure on women as we are the ones who have children and that’s something we get reminded about regularly!
What do you think can be done to minimise pressure put on Asian women to marry by a certain age?
We need to start talking more and opening up our minds. After my first vlog I had so many women and men message and tweet me saying thank you for doing the video it’s helped me so much or I will show it to my parents to help them understand it’s ok to be single for now!
You can catch Noreen Khan on BBC Asian Network weekdays from 1:30-5pm and check out her vlog here: