In this counseling answer:
The counselor advises following your wrongs with the right. Continue seeking purification through service of others, prayer, and doing good. Take what you learned seriously and as a lesson directly from God to you.
As-Salaam ’Alaikum sister,
I am sorry to hear of your pain, but I am glad you realize your reality as it is a major stepping stone on your path! Yes, time is very precious and we can never get it back and we do not know how much is left in our future. God forgive us all, Amin.
Humans by nature want to feel loved, desired, and validated. This human need can be fulfilled in a variety of ways. Clearly, when we do not satisfy this human need according to our religion’s boundaries, we are the ones who suffer. As God, All Mighty has warned, when we sin, we only oppress ourselves. (Quran 7:23)
Sometimes, we must learn the hard way in order to live easier and wiser for our future. The important thing is that you acknowledge your state and do everything you can to change for the better. God does not change a person’s state unless they exert the effort to change themselves. (Quran 8:53)
In our times, it is easier to fulfill sexual desires in the haram way, unfortunately. We are all constantly being inundated with images of love, romance, and sex, and have been taught that we are of no value until we are desired by another. Marriage in Islam demands rights and responsibilities of the people involved in union so that we do not feel used and valueless. Everything in our religion is established to protect the fragility of the self (nafs) which one of its meanings is precious, according to the Arabic language.
Our purpose is to desire and love God above all else (Quran 2:165) and hope that God loves us and is pleased with us. This primary relationship must be established before any romantic one. If God was primary in your life, you would not have “cheated” on God with a person in haram. This is how you should understand your relationship with God. When we displease God, the Greatest, it is greater than displeasing ourselves or another creature.
Do not despair, sister; we all have mistakes, and as believers we trust that if we correct our understanding and apply ourselves to beauty and truth, we will be forgiven and restored. (Quran 25:70)
Yes, you can feel whole again, in sha’ Allah! Yes, you can overcome this and find a brighter future. God can forgive anything, and a sign that you are forgiven is when you feel remorse and change your course of life towards truth and goodness. Falling into despair and giving up hope is from Satan. He loves when we sin, but more importantly, he loves when we give up hope of God’s mercy. This is when we truly loose.
Follow your wrongs with the right. Continue seeking purification through service of others, prayer, and doing good. With time, you will feel better, in sha’ Allah, and have gained great wisdom from all this. For the believer, anything that seems bad can posses good behind it. Take what you learned seriously and as a lesson directly from God to you. Now, you must become the woman you deserve to be, one of self dignity and piety.
Don’t forget, God never leaves us; we are the ones that leave God. Go back and don’t look back.
God bless you on your path, sister!
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