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The Burden of Sin

24 June, 2022
Q I am married and I had an online affair along with phone conversations. There was no physical involvement. It is over now, but I don't know how to get over it. I feel a lot of guilt and shame, and I feel so dirty for doing this. I cry all the time and I don't know what to do since I knowingly committed sin. Every dirty thing we talked about… At the time, I knew it was not right, but I didn't realize then that it was one of the biggest sins. I wanted to stop it, but I couldn't then, it just began to feel like that there was nothing wrong in it. He used to ask me to leave my husband, and go to his country to marry him, but then when I was ready, this guy said he found another girl whom he will marry, and he stopped contacting me. Only then, did I realize what a big sin I was committing. I went through such a hard time, then I felt, and I am still feeling very low and sick, as well as being such a horrible person. It has been over 2 years now, but I am still not okay. I feel very bad for committing the sin,. I want to live a happy life, but I am not able to. The burden of sin does not let me. I also feel stupid for letting this guy make such a fool out of me. He insisted that I maintain the relationship with him, and I got seriously involved. Please help me through this. Is it possible to live a normal life after committing such a sin, or does the rest of my life become a form of punishment? Also, please advise if I should tell my husband or not?

Answer

Answer:

As-Salamu ‘Alaikum,

Al hamdu Lillah that you do acknowledge that what you did is haram (forbidden in Islam).

Far too many people do not consider an affair without being physically present as committing zina, and as such, they are not betraying their spouse.

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Emotional betrayal can be much more devastating than a physical betrayal to the spouse depending on the nature of the marital relationship.

In some countries more than others, it is almost common practice for strange men to make random phone calls in order to seduce a girl.

It is a challenge for their ego, the game of conquest that some men like to do for thrills in order to inflate their sense of prowess.

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They want to see how far they can get without commitment. There is no consideration for the female they seek to seduce – it is all just a game.

Abu Huraira reported Allah’s Messenger (saw) as saying:

“…The adultery of the eye is the lustful look and the adultery of the ears is listening to voluptuous (song or talk) and the adultery of the tongue is licentious speech and the adultery of the hand is the lustful grip (embrace) and the adultery of the feet is to walk (to the place) where he intends to commit adultery and the heart yearns and desires which he may or may not put into effect.” (Muslim)

There were no meetings to allow the eyes to commit fornication, but your tongue and your heart did.

Ensnared you were conquered, and when you realized it was too late. The question is, if the relationship could have continued, would you have awoken to what was actually taking place? From anger, to guilt, you have been facing these emotions, and as a result of these emotions, you do not feel like a respectable person.

“…Consult your heart. Righteousness is that about which the soul feels tranquil and the heart feels tranquil, and wrongdoing is that which wavers in the soul and moves to and fro in the breast even though people again and again have given you their legal opinion.” (An-Nawawi 27)

My dear sister, it happened. Don’t become a slave to the regret of what you did. If anything is to be learnt by it is that you are worth more than that.

Ask yourself, what is it that made you take this direction? Is there something lacking in your marriage? Do you not feel the love that you would have left your husband for? Rather than focusing on what took place, focus on your desire to lead a better life, by fasting, forgiving yourself, and seeking forgiveness from Allah (swt).

Once you can do that, you are better placed to focus on building a healthy balanced marital relationship with your husband, and nurturing the love that we all need, In sha ‘Allah.

Allah (swt) has given man the ability to choose. If, as humans, we learn from our mistakes, we are better for it by changing our ways by the endurance of our intentions.

Otherwise, we are left to suffer the consequences of our intentions. If we commit ourselves to changing the errors of our ways by replacing bad deeds with good deeds, then our repentance becomes more acceptable.

A man approached Prophet Muhammed (saw) and informed him:

“I sported with a woman in the outskirts of Medina, and I have committed an offence short of fornication.

Here I am (before you), kindly deliver verdict about me which you deem fit. Umar said: Allah concealed your fault.

You had better conceal it yourself also. Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him), however, gave no reply to him.

The man stood up and went away and Prophet Muhammed sent a person after him to call him and he recited this verse:”

And observe prayer at the ends of the day and in the first hours of the night. Surely, good deeds take away evil deeds.

That is a reminder for the mindful” (xi. 115). A person amongst the people said: Allah’s Apostle, does it concern this man only? Thereupon he (the Holy Prophet) said: No, but the people at large.” (Muslim)

Salam,

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About Hwaa Irfan
Late Hwaa Irfan, may her soul rest in peace, served as consultant, counselor and freelance writer. Her main focus was on traditional healing mechanisms as practiced in various communities, as opposed to Western healing mechanisms.