It's sickening how many masajid are like that. I remember being 8 months pregnant and entering a masjid in our neighbourhood from a side door and having so much trouble going up 3 flights of stairs to the sisters area dragging my toddler with me, while the men's area was on the main floor through the main doors. My husband manages an Islamic centre where we live and he encourages all to use the main doors and to pray in the main hall. Mothers with children are welcome to pray downstairs where there are toys and they can comfortably nurse. Other sisters come upstairs in the main hall to listen to lectures and pray. One day a friend of mine was praying upstairs and a man came in. Upon seeing her praying in the main hall started telling her "You can't pray here! You have to pray downstairs!"
She finished her prayer and left! But it boiled my blood because these men have no problem mingling with immodest women and standing behind them in coffee shops but lose it on us women who are covered from head to toe trying to reach khushoo in our salah by making it in a place that doesn't smell like mold! Come on!!!!"
Shandalla LR Seirawan comments: Yumna Rashid, you said that so perfectly. I made the same comment shortly after converting about the men and uncovered women. It boiled my blood too. I stopped going to the masjid because I was so angry about it.