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How Do I Overcome the Past and Love Again Wholeheartedly?

24 May, 2022
Q Salam.. I hope you are well.

I was in a relationship for about 6 years almost with a boy and both our families were aware and had mutual understanding that yes in future this will be official after education is completed.

However, in the last two years of it, that boy started to abuse me emotionally and mentally and then he eventually left me for another girl (which he told me at last when he saw that despite his abusive behavior I didn't leave him) and his family completely backed out.

He left me completely first in June 2018 and then again for once and for all in January 2019.

I know it all sounds very easy the way I have said it but all that betrayal, that mistreatment, that abuse has left marks on me deeply most of which I never talk about.

I took the entire year focusing and rebuilding myself all over again, I kept praying to Allah to guide me and help me through it all.

I have recovered a lot and now I am wiser than before.

After praying to Allah for peace in my personal life , all duas, all tahajjuds, and istikhara prayers.. recently I received a proposal out of the blue from one of my sister's colleagues.

I really like this guy and now I can say that I have started loving him because he is a very nice man, focuses on Allah and on getting close to Him and stays in the company of good people and studies Holy Quran with understanding.

This is the main thing which I love him for. I love him for Allah... His father has already spoken to my father and things are progressing Alhamdulillah.

The thing is that although I thought that I healed completely but now dealing with this new proposal I get so scared many times when in reality there's nothing to worry about.

I don't know how to list down those fears here, I am so scared that's all I can say. There are so many insecurities and so many thoughts that bother me.

I always try to do Dhikr to calm myself, pray Nawafil and other prayers but sometimes I just don't know how to deal with it.

I have so many insecurities and fears, of not being loved back , of not being valued or respected.. of being cheated on again .. and I see that despite having so much confidence, again I get insecurities about myself whether or not I am good enough.

I am so scared to lose this new happiness that I have found.

I don't know how to cope with those wounds that are deep down in my soul although I do not think of my past experience anymore but those wounds and scars given by it are still there embedded in me irrespective of me not recalling anything of the past.

I have gotten over my past but not from the betrayal and abuse that happened.

How do I come out of that trauma so that I do not think negatively of the new love and expectations that I have found?

Answer


In this counseling answer:

Sister, it is normal to have concerns over being hurt again after a heartbreak, but it does fade with time and will get easier inshallah. 

Find strength in the fact that you took time to heal and rebuild.

Speak honestly and kindly with your potential husband. 

Use self-talk to bring yourself down when you feel worried or insecure.

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Use the mirror for pep talks in the morning.

Keep praying, making duaa and pray istikhara.

Consider counselor or a mediator if things do not become easier.


Assalamu alaikum, 

Thank you for taking the time to write in and trust us with your concerns.

 It is my understanding you had a previous breakup with a relationship intended for marriage that ended in emotional abuse, another woman, and overall feelings of betrayal and mistreatment from a man that was your first love and introduction to relationships. 

Before we unpack all of this Sister, I want to highlight something you said that is amazing and so healthy.

“I took the entire year focusing on rebuilding myself all over again, I kept praying to Allah,” and “I have recovered a lot and now I am wiser than before”. Alhamdulilah Sister, this is one of the best things I could have hoped to read from you.

Unfortunately, rushing into another relationship before healing is an all too common mistake that hurts us in the end.

It sounds like you are ready to move forward and are in a healthy mindset to do so. 

I understand you consider this man to be nice, pious, in the company of good people and you are developing feelings for him. Mashallah, this sounds great and promising.

I also understand you are scared sometimes about being hurt again, noticed insecurities about your self-esteem and overall do not want your new love to be expected to pay the price of your first love. 

How Do I Overcome the Past and Love Again Wholeheartedly? - About Islam

Communication

It is important for you and for your potential husband to communicate honestly and kindly.

You can consider talking to him about what happened in the past and how it has impacted you.

Let him know that it has made you wiser in relationships, inshallah a better wife than you would have been due to this wisdom, but it also leaves behind emotional wounds.

Explain yourself openly that you have healed, but as a marriage means being vulnerable again it has made you nervous.

If you begin your marriage with honest and open communication, inshallah it will help you to maintain this as you move forward.

This can help foster greater trust from both of you and sets the tone for being understanding of one another. 

Please understand it is normal to have concerns over being hurt again after a heartbreak, but it does fade with time and will get easier inshallah. 

Talk Yourself Down

During those difficult moments where you may feel very worried or thinking of these insecure thoughts.

I want you to try and exercise self-talk. For example, if you are thinking about being hurt again ask yourself “has this man ever showed red flags that he will hurt me” and really think about it.

If he has never shown you anything within his character and behavior that makes you think he will potentially hurt you then tell yourself it is an irrational fear then think about all of the good things surrounding him that can help you feel safer inshallah.

For example, you state he is a kind man and he works on his relationship with Allah (swt).

This can act as a sign to you that he will be good and try to make you happy, not hurt you or abandon you as the first man did. 

If you are worried about being good enough, tell yourself 3 things about yourself that are beautiful.

For example, perhaps you love your hair color, how you recite certain surahs of the Quran and how you take care of loved ones. It can be anything; physical, intellectual etc. 

Mirror

Another exercise in self-esteem is using your mirror.

Every morning when you look in the mirror, take a moment to tell yourself “I deserve to be loved” and look into your own eyes when you say it. Tell yourself “I am worth it”. 

I hope you know you are worthy of love and you absolutely deserve it!


Check out this counseling video:


Worship

You mentioned prayer and dhikr. This is a great way to help yourself as you move forward, keep your heart in remembrance of Allah (swt) and provide you guidance as you progress.

I encourage you to keep doing this and also pray istikhara regarding this marriage.

During difficult moments, remember you can utilize dhikr and duaa almost anywhere at any time. 

If you need help understanding istikhara, please use this link. 

Unbiased Mediation

If you find yourself struggling more and more with trust and insecurities and it is increasingly difficult to manage then you may want to consider professional counseling or an unbiased mediator.

This could be a marriage counselor, a trusted friend, or family member. Someone to help you bounce ideas off of them about how you are feeling, if it is really about your husband, or is it about your ex and inshallah they can help you unpack those emotional wounds. 

Final Thoughts

Here is a summary of your next steps moving forward. 

  • Find strength in the fact you took time to heal and rebuild
  • Speak honestly and kindly with your potential husband 
  • Use self-talk to bring yourself down when you feel worried or insecure
  • Use the mirror for pep talks in the morning
  • Keep praying, making duaa and pray istikhara
  • Consider counselor or a mediator if things do not become easier

I know this can be a scary prospect to go into, no one wants to get hurt again.

Inshallah this marriage will be happy, loving and you will both grow closer in your connection to Allah (swt). 

May Allah (swt) heal your heart and make this a happy union, ameen.

Salam,

***

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 are liable for any damages that may arise from your decision in the use of our services.

Read more:

https://aboutislam.net/counseling/ask-the-counselor/marital-obstacles/im-tired-of-being-jealous-insecure/

https://aboutislam.net/family-life/husbands-wives/learning-how-to-heal-trust-again-after-cheating/

https://aboutislam.net/reading-islam/living-islam/4-ways-to-heal-a-wounded-heart/


About Monique Hassan
Monique Hassan graduated with honors in 2012 with her BSc in Psychology and a minor in Biology and is certified in Crisis Prevention and Intervention. She has years of professional as well as personal experience with trauma, relationship struggles, substance abuse, identifying coping skills, conflict resolution, community outreach, and overall mental health concerns. She is a professional writer specialized in Islamic Psychology and Behavioral Health. She is also a revert who took her shahada in 2015, Alhamdulillah. You can contact Sister Monique Hassan via her website "MoniqueHassan.com"