After Broken Engagement, Mom Forces Me to Get Married

23 July, 2017
Q As-Salamu Aleikom. I am a 32-year-old man. Alhamdulillah, I regularly pray and follow Islam properly since I was 7 years old. Recently, I just broke off my engagement with someone, and I am feeling very upset and depressed to the extent that even sometimes I thought of committing suicide, but Allah has guided me, and alhamdulillah I’m still alive. 2 and half years ago, I received a marriage proposal which my mom and my whole family accepted. Both families were happy about it and decided to hold the wedding after 4 months. Everything was going fine. I asked my mom before the marriage to talk to my fiancée because it was permissible in Islam. My mom and the bride’s father gave us permission to talk over the phone, so we started talking. She called me frequently. But 2 months prior to the wedding, suddenly, my elder brother started threatening me that if this marriage took place, he would kill us. My mom and her father and some other relatives tried to persuade my brother and make him behave well but in vain. My marriage was postponed. For 2 years, despite all efforts, he has been still saying the same thing. He is very arrogant; he has never taken the responsibility for supporting my mother and siblings after my father’s death. I and one of my elder brothers take care of my mother and sister. Why then is he ruining my marriage? I did not get to understand him. My finacée and I were still talking over the phone, and we both fell in love (although we have never met face to face). Finally, her father said it was enough and decided to marry off her daughter to another man. This happened a month ago; since then I haven't talked to her. I am very upset and depressed. I can't forget her, so I decided to never get married, but my mother forces me to marry another woman. Is it obligatory in Islam to get married? If I do not marry, am I questioned in the Hereafter? Am I disobeying my mother? Jazakallah khairun.

Answer

Answer:

As-Salamu ‘Alaikum Brother,

Thank you for sending us your question. I am sorry to hear about the recent break-off of your engagement. It appears that you are deeply hurt by what happened. I ask Allah (swt) to help you ease your pain and to allow you to move on in life with confidence and strength.

In regards to your question, I am not an Islamic scholar to directly answer your question whether it is Islamically permissible to decline marriage completely. I would like to refer you to our “Ask the Scholar” section if you would like an Islamic scholar to answer your question. However, I will answer your question as a mental health professional.

It appears that the recent break-off of your engagement has left a deep wound in your heart. The wound was so deep that you even started to contemplate suicide. Whenever someone gets to a point of contemplating suicide, they absolutely need to seek help. Brother, if you still have these feelings, please do not hesitate to seek professional help through a mental health professional in your area or to go directly to a hospital. Your safety is more important than anything else is at this point.

If your feelings of suicide have subsided, then you most likely are going through a period of grief over the end of your engagement. I say grief because you are probably feeling similar to the death of a loved one. That is because for two and a half years you have been constantly working on building a long-lasting relationship with your former fiancée. After building a relationship and getting to a point in which your dream was almost fulfilled, it was suddenly taken away from the both of you. Now, you feel that your plans for a happy future have ended. You may feel empty, lost, and hopeless.

Even though these feelings are terrible and difficult to deal with, please know that they are perfectly normal feelings after what happened with you. The first thing you need to do is to be patient with yourself and to take care of yourself emotionally and physically. Do not make major decisions about your future at this point. Right now, just focus on the present and getting by each day. Jumping into a new relationship at this point is not recommended because you still need to overcome your feelings of grief first. Spend time doing things that you enjoy doing and spending time with people who you enjoy their company. Any decision regarding marriage or staying single for the rest of your life should be postponed until you slowly feel like “yourself” again.

If a family member tries to pressure you to get married or to do anything you feel you are not ready for, kindly let them know how you feel and that you are not making any major decision at this point. Grief can take the time to overcome. Focusing on yourself and making new goals and new dreams for yourself is what you should aspire to at this time.

May Allah (swt) help you,

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