In this counseling answer:
• The important thing is that you acknowledge your error, ask Allah to forgive you for it, and seek to avoid committing that sin again.
• Realize that there is a way to move forward without having this person occupy your heart and mind in such a strong way.
• Keep yourself busy.
Wa ‘Alaikum Salaam Wa Rahmatullaahi Wa Barakaatuh,
Thank you for reaching out to us!
To begin with, it is good to know that you recognize your previous relationship with this individual as having been one that was not halaal. Of course, we all make mistakes. The important thing is that you acknowledge your error, ask Allah to forgive you for it, and seek to avoid committing that sin again.
Unfortunately, one of Shaytan’s traps is to try and pull us back into a situation that he knows will tempt us to commit the same – or worse – sins.
In this case, not only are you being drawn back to the person whom you had an impermissible relationship with but this time, he’s married – and the severity of the sin of zina is greater for the person who is or has been married, than for the one who has not been.
As for how you feel about this man, know that Allah does not hold us accountable for our emotions or desires. Rather, we are held responsible for whether or not we act upon those feelings.
It is understandable that you have strong feelings for this person since you were so close to them for so long. However, rather than giving into these feelings and being steered back towards that situation, it is important to realize that there is a way to move forward without having this person occupy your heart and mind in such a strong way.
First, remember that Allah is Muqallib al-Quloob: the turner of hearts.
The Messenger of Allah said,
“Indeed the hearts are between two fingers from the fingers of Allaah – He turns them however He wills.” (Tirmidhi)
Allah alone truly controls our hearts, and it is He to whom we should turn; it is His help that we should seek in overcoming any heartache. Ask Allah to alleviate your sadness, and ask Him to replace the love in your heart for this man with love for Allah. More than any human being, love for Allah will fill you with a sense of peacefulness, tranquility, and joy.
“Verily, in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest!” (Qur’an 13:28)
Secondly, keep yourself busy! Shaytan takes advantage of us when we aren’t focused on something meaningful. There are many different ways to push Shaytan away in these moments of deep vulnerability. Make sure that you fulfill your acts of worship with a sense of taqwa and khushoo’; connect to Allah in a deep and conscious manner, and you will find that it’s a little easier to stop thinking of the man whom you think you love.
Spend time with your family and friends, reminding yourself that true love isn’t just something that you get from a relationship with a man. True love is also the love you share with your parents, your siblings, and good companions who remind you of Allah and are good influences.
Join Islamic classes, volunteer at different locations for philanthropical causes – whether at a masjid or Islamic center, a soup kitchen or charity organization, or something similar.
When you give your time for the sake of Allah, you will find that your heart is lightened and Allah showers His barakah on you even more. You will experience so many heartwarming moments and enlightening realizations; the emotional struggles you’re going through right now will be put into perspective and you’ll realize that, in the grand scheme of things, this is just a passing challenge.
No doubt, it will take some time, and it’s natural to feel sad and conflicted over the situation. However, remember that Allah has something better planned for you. Far better than any impermissible relationship with a human being is a beautiful relationship with Allah. And, of course, it is always good to make du’a that Allah grant you a pious husband!
You are a wonderful Muslim woman, and there is so much more for you to do than waste your time pining for this man. You have so much love to give, to so many more people and for the Sake of Allah, than to have it wasted on this person.
I truly believe that inshaAllah, you will grow from this experience and find yourself increasing in your love for Allah, and your ability to help others. In turn, to be loved by those whose love truly matters.
May Allah fill your heart with love for Him, and make you amongst those who are beloved to Him,
Disclaimer: The conceptualization and recommendations stated in this response are very general and purely based on the limited information provided in the question. In no event shall AboutIslam, its counselors or employees be held liable for any damages that may arise from your decision in the use of our services.