Thank you for responding to everyone seeking advice. jazaka Allahu khayran(may Allah reward you). I am a 21-year-old woman. My problem is that I met a Muslim man where I am working. He is a student, but he is also my boss’ friend. He always comes to our offices. He used to preach to me about Islam and he used to teach me the Qur'an whenever he came to our office. Because of his preaching, I started to wear the hijab (Islamic dress code for women). All of this made me love him, and he loves me too. He used to behave like he was going to marry me, and now he does not behave in that way, but I know that he loves me.
Due to this love, I want us to marry each other, for thesake of Islam. My question is, should I wait until he approaches me or should I approach him? I know he practices Islam very well. Is it allowed in Islam for a woman to approach men? I want this boy to be my future partner because of the Islam I see him practicing. Please I need your response urgently. jazaka Allahu khayran.
In this counseling answer:
You should try to spend some time on your own, separating out that which pertains to Islam and that which pertains to this man.
As-Salamu `Alaykum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh sister,
We welcome you to Islam! We are very happy for you and we pray that you gain much benefit on the journey that is Islam. It is not often that conversion takes place in the office! You must be careful, situations can occur which may lead to false perceptions that colleagues have of each other. Having someone warm and caring who seeks to improve you for your own benefit can be quite an overwhelming experience which definitively leaves an impression. Under such circumstances, one has to be very careful. Things may not be as you perceive them.
This preaching is a special kind of offering which. because of its nature, is full of love and compassion; not necessarily at a human level, but in terms of loving for the sake of Allah (swt). Because this is the true nature of Islam and is a rare quality in this world, we want more of it. It is an unconditional love and compassion that seeks only the elevation of all life – hence the expression “loving for the sake of Allah (swt)”.
However, experiencing such a feeling can make one become confused, either because one is not certain how to handle it, or because one is not emotionally equipped to understand this feeling. Therefore, what we are saying here is that you should try to spend some time on your own, separating out that which pertains to Islam and that which pertains to this man. It would be most beneficial if you could do this because it would help you greatly to understand what is real for you.
Firstly, the reason you need to separate out these emotions for yourself is that if you do discover that you have feelings for him, enough to want him to be your life partner in marriage, then it will be important that you see him as he is and not for what you expect him to be. He is human, and all humans make mistakes. You knew him through his work in Islam, so he was trying to be the best that he could be. Do not expect him to be like this all the time, otherwise, you will place an unnecessary burden on him to live up to your expectations, which might even cause him to escape from the pressure. We are all learning, and it is only that he has learned and experienced more in terms of Islam.
Secondly, be patient. He is probably trying to ascertain what his feelings are as well. He is undoubtedly going through a period of realization. Please, do not be upset with him if he should choose not to go ahead with the marriage.
Thirdly, in terms of Islam, there is nothing un-Islamic about approaching a man for marriage, but it should not be done directly. To save embarrassment and unnecessary complications, he should be approached through a relative, or if this is not possible, then a reputable wali(guardian) to act on your behalf. Otherwise, there is no harm in being patient and waiting to see whether he is interested in you in this way. If he does want to proceed with marriage and to avoid unnecessary complications, he, or his family, should approach your family formally.
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