I have a question which has disturbed me now for many years. I have been married for the past 10 years and I truly love my wife and kids. Five years ago, I had a brief relationship with one of my office mates. The physical relationship existed for some time, and we met on several occasions which resulted in physical contact. But it never crossed a certain limit and we did not engage in the ultimate sinful act. Later, I realized that it was all wrong and we continued our separate ways.
I wanted to reveal this to wife, but have always kept it a secret because I am not sure of her reaction. I want to ask if I should tell her. If I do, then a line, however thin, will come into what is a very transparent and loving relationship. Secondly, did I commit zina (illegitimate sexual intercourse)? Should I declare and face punishment for purification?
An answer, even a painful one, would at least lessen my long drawn out mental agony. May Allah bless you and the maintainers of this web site. You are doing a splendid job.
In this counseling answer:
• Make it a part of your daily worship routine to repent to Allah (swt) and to seek His forgiveness for your sins.
• Increase your voluntary prayers, your fasting, and giving in charity as well.
• You have to ask yourself whether you are still committed to your wife and your children. Have you imposed enough self-restraints that you will never again approach adultery, let alone engage in adulterous acts or relationships?
• In order to repair your relationship with your wife, we strongly suggest that you spend the rest of your life in faithful commitment to her and your children.
We thank you for your kind words. Please continue to make du`aa’ to Allah (swt) to accept our efforts. Please, encourage your family and friends to visit the site and benefit from it.
We are pleased that you have such a strong marital relationship, and more importantly that you feel remorse for having committed such a grave offense. Allah Most High is merciful and we are reminded to repent to Him (swt) for our sins. So, before you do anything else, you must make it a part of your daily worship routine to repent to Allah (swt) and to seek His forgiveness for your sins. Increase your voluntary prayers, your fasting, and giving in charity as well. Draw nearer to Allah (swt) with more voluntary good deeds, and promise yourself and Allah Most High that you will never again commit such sins.
The more complex question remains: should you tell your wife about your transgressions? The sin you committed has left an indelible mark on your heart and this mark is known to you and Allah Most High alone. You have to ask yourself whether you are still committed to your wife and your children. Have you imposed enough self-restraints that you will never again approach adultery, let alone engage in adulterous acts or relationships?
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If you cannot commit to this, then we believe it is an injustice for you to remain married to your wife, and the first step would be for you to inform her. If you can, in fact, commit to remaining monogamous and faithful to your wife from now on, then you should not tell her about your sinful actions. Those sins remain between you and Allah (swt), who, if He (swt) had willed, could have made them public.
In order to repair your relationship with your wife, we strongly suggest that you spend the rest of your life in faithful commitment to her and your children. Keep repenting in private, assuring yourself of Allah’s (swt) mercy but never becoming complacent to the extent that you think you have repented enough! Turn back to Allah (swt) and turn your life aright, in sha’ Allah.
Did you commit zina? Should you face the punishment? These and other questions are answered by our learned scholars in the Fatwa section. You may read further the link below and submit your own question to the scholars.
Allah (swt) knows best,
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.