Somy Ali on Salman Khan, the Single Life & More…
As a curious woman, I really enjoy learning about other people’s views on the singles scene, dating, and past relationships All of us are trying to make it and be successful and no one knows where their destinies will take them or who will cross their paths and change their luck. Learning and growing from other people is what makes the world go round.
I got the chance to talk to Somy Ali, Salman Khan’s ex and a smart and savvy business woman, about her experiences as a Bollywood star and her current lifestyle. Somy Ali is originally from Karachi, Pakistan. She moved to Bombay, India where she worked in 10 Hindi films and several commercials. She then moved to the United States to obtain a degree in psychology. She attended Nova Southeastern University in Florida. While working on her bachelor’s degree, Somy worked at a local radio station, doing talk shows on social and political issues. It was during this time that she became very interested in journalism and decided to attend the University of Miami to obtain a masters degree in print journalism. During this time, she developed an interest in documentary films and left Miami to attend the New York Film Academy.
Consequently today, after a successful university career, Somy Ali has evolved into a US based human rights advocate and documentary film maker who is both passionate about educating the public and working to help solve complex global issues. Somy has been involved with woman’s rights issues in South Asia. As a founder of both No More Tears and So-Me Designs, Somy Ali has raised awareness on immigrants being brought to the US, who are abused physically, sexually, and verbally. No More Tears has rescued 111 women since 2007 along with their children.
Somy Ali’s clothing line, So-Me is found in boutiques all over the US, which takes a stand against intolerance through the aid of fashion.
22 Questions for Somy Ali
1. What do you think of the singles population today? Do you believe that singles are actively trying to date and find a match or do you think it is all a game and people aren’t serious?
I think it is a little bit of both. I think people in general are afraid to be alone and sometimes they put up with things that they should not simply because of societal pressures and the need to conform to the societal norm of being in a relationship. On the other hand, there are people that don’t care about the conformity aspect of being in a relationship, such as myself.
2.Cameron Diaz believes that marriage is a dying institution. According to her, we make our own rules. Do you agree or disagree? Why or why not?
Statistics show that lesser people are getting married and the divorce rate is ridiculously high. That tells us something. I personally believe that marriage is an institution you can’t wait to get in and once you’re in you can’t wait to get out.
3. Do you think it is possible for men and women to have the same capacity to love one another?
Absolutely. Once again that is very individual specific. I think the biggest factor in the divorces that are taking place, quite frequently is because there is not equal love in a marriage. But once again, I have to emphasize that it is extremely individual specific.
4. Tell us a little bit about your relationship with Salman Khan.
Salman was my first boyfriend. I had a huge crush on him as a teenager. The crush led me to leave Florida and move to India and join films just so I could find him and get married to him. You have a license of doing idiotic things when you’re 15. However, I do not have a single regret of pursuing my first love.
5. How would you describe Salman Khan?
They say if you can count four friends on your fingers and trust them blindly, you’re extremely fortunate. Salman happens to be one of them. He has a heart of gold and I know for a fact that if I were ever in need he would be the first person that I would call.
6. Do you have any regrets about your relationship with Salman Khan?
No regrets at all. I learned a great deal from Salman and his family. Teenage years are formative years for individuals, especially a young girl and spending my teenage years growing up in front of Salman has made me who I am today. Salman and his family taught me that it does not matter what religion one is, what culture one comes from, what makes a person a good person is their actions. He was a good role model to have growing up, outside of the boyfriend aspect of things.
7. Do you still keep in touch with Salman Khan?
Absolutely. Like I do with any other friend.
8. Who came between you and Salman Khan?
9. Who do you blame more for your breakup, Aishwarya Rai or Salman Khan?
Neither. They both did what they felt and believed was the right thing to do at that point in time. I don’t like to hold grudges. It will only affect my growth as a person.
10. Vivek Oberoi threw a press conference in 2003 regarding his altercation with Salman Khan. Do you believe what he said about Salman? Why do you think Vivek said those things regarding Salman?
I am not responsible for what other people say, but I would say this, anytime a person treats or speaks badly of someone else it usually stems from insecurity.
11. Do you attend Bollywood award ceremonies?
12. Are you and Salman Khan still friendly? Does he visit you in the States at all? Do you visit him in India? When was the last time you guys met up?
The last time I saw him was in Bangkok. I was there for a women’s rights conference and he was there for a film shoot in May 2011. We caught up as friends would and talked about our non-profits. We both complimented each other about making a change for the better.
13. What was the reason you left India and a promising career in Bollywood?
To reiterate, I did not go to India for a career in Bollywood. I had a crush on an actor like any teenager does and I actually pursued the crush and went to find him. In hindsight now, I think it was extremely precocious for a 15 year old.
14. If given the opportunity, would you ever return to Bollywood?
No. I would not trade saving lives and my work with No More Tears for anything else in this world.
15. Do you miss making films?
I don’t miss being in films. I am working on a film for No More Tears at the moment.
16. What are your favorite Bollywood movies?
Maine Pyar Kiya, Monsoon Wedding, Tare Zameen Par, Black, and Fire.
17. Do you live alone?
My mother has been living with me for the past two months. She recently moved in and she has been a huge supporter for my work with No More Tears.
18. Do you wish you had a partner that completes you?
I think everyone secretly wishes that they had someone that understood them. I would be lying if I said I didn’t, however I haven’t found anyone that is equally passionate and understanding of my work as a human rights activist and me as an individual.
19.If you had one wish, what would it be?
For No More Tears to permeate globally and saves lives wherever it is needed.
20.Do you believe in soul mates?
No. There is no such thing.
21. What experience in your life led you to create the No More Tears Project?
I saw domestic violence growing up in Pakistan and then in my teenage years in India as well as in my adult years in the US. Domestic violence has no prejudices and is not class specific. It effects everyone! I wanted to take a stand against it which gave birth to No More Tears.
22. Where do you see yourself going in the future? How do you think your life will turn out? How do you want your life to turn out?
My present and my future are extremely contingent upon my work with No More Tears. I do plan on adopting a baby girl from Pakistan in the next 2-3 years. As I mentioned early the goal is to make No More Tears rescue lives first all over the US and then globally. As a progressive Muslim woman, I find it my duty to help young girls and women in Pakistan and anywhere else where they are being mistreated.
Thanks Somy! It was a pleasure talking with you!
Monica Marwah is a 30 something single school psychologist who enjoys living life to the fullest. She is taking her experience and showing others how to believe in themselves and love themselves completely. After years of dating and meeting people, she has come into her own. Spirituality has been a foundation for self improvement for her and she is hoping to encourage people to embark upon a spiritual journey at this age.
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