We became very good friends and many times he pleaded for pics and sometimes I sent him. 6 months ago, my cousin told me that my school friend has told everybody that I am in a relationship with him for 5-6 years. He was very angry about it and had a fight with him. I broke the contact. He started doing bad things. He started contacting my sister, brother, cousin and created a fake account. He uploaded my pics and posted my numbers in very bad groups. I never thought he would do this to me. I don’t live in a society where these type of things are normal. I was very tensed as everybody was pointing at me, but my parents didn't know anything. They only know that my cousin had a fight with someone because of a girl.
I told my parents everything. They got shocked. My mother understood everything, but my father is very angry about it. He told me he didn't expect this from me. I have broken the trust of my parents and my father didn't allow me to go to college. My father trusted blindly on me and that talk with the guy ruined everything. Please, suggest me what to do and how can they start trusting me again?
In this counseling answer:
• Everyone makes a mistake, but the ones who are the best are the ones who accept it and seek forgiveness.
• We must be clear about our feelings. What made you chat with him?
• If your mother understands your desperation to overcome the past, she will try to mediate the relationship and trust between your father and yourself.
As-Salamu Alaikum dear sister,
I am sorry to hear of the situation that you have been currently facing. I am sure that it is a hard time for you, and it is a form of a test from Allah.
Earning someone’s trust is very hard, and breaking it is very easy. If you think from your parent’s perspective, I am sure that you can understand what they must be going through, especially given the society in which you live. I know in your society even talking to a boy with a purpose is frowned upon.
However, this is not merely a cultural rule. In Islam, it is downright forbidden for the opposite gender to interact without a professional purpose such as school, university, or work. When something is forbidden, there are usually sound reasons behind it.
You need to seek Allah’s forgiveness
Dear sister, I know this may sound harsh, but before you think about your parents, you need to think about Allah. You have first disobeyed Allah’s orders although you know it is not allowed in Islam to befriend the opposite gender. Everyone makes a mistake, but the ones who are the best are the ones who accept it and seek forgiveness.
The Prophet said,
“Every son of Adam sins, and the best of the sinners are the repentant.” (Tirmidhi)
In the Quran, Allah said,
“Ask forgiveness of your Lord. Indeed, He is ever a Perpetual Forgiver. He will send [rain from] the sky upon you in [continuing] showers and give you increase in wealth and children and provide for you gardens and provide for you rivers.” (Quran 71: 10-12)
Allah says in the Quran,
“Indeed, those who have faith and do righteous deeds—the All-beneficent will point for them affection.” (Quran 19:96)
Therefore, seek continuous forgiveness.
Understand and explain your feelings
Sometimes feelings make the worst of us. They can either make us do something positive or something equally negative. We must be clear about our feelings.
What made you chat with him? Make a list of the thoughts you had while you were chatting with him. Were they for a good purpose? What was the benefit? Was it simply to follow what others did? For self-satisfaction? You made a mistake, and this will ensure that next time you guard your feelings and tread on the right path.
Dear sister, nothing good ever comes from disobedience and from going against the right. No matter how many people engage in the wrong, it will never become the right.
You must explain to your mother, given that she is more understanding than your father, what feelings lead you to the mistake. If your mother understands and realizes the mistake you made and your desperation to overcome the past, she will try to mediate the relationship and trust between your father and yourself.
An effective apology requires acceptance of the mistake
Parents are always acting in their child’s best interest. I can assure you that although you feel sad and unhappy, your parents are far unhappier. You are their daughter, and they trusted you because you are a good person, and they were certain that you would never fall off their teachings. Now, they are disappointed and feel a lot worse than you can imagine.
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You need to think from their perspective and think how you would feel if someone had broken your trust. You are only human, and humans are bound to mistakes. However, parents don’t realize this as they expect their children to be perfect and better than they ever were.
Sincerity is observed when you take responsibility for your mistake. You must tell that you made a mistake which you are ashamed of and are embarrassed by. You must tell them how you feel now, and you must not become aggressive or rude if they react negatively. You must humble yourself before them. You must be open and non-defensive about any conversation you have with your parents. You must acknowledge that you have broken their trust and there is nothing that you regret more in life.
Accept their decision until you earn back their trust
If they have told you that you must not go to university, you must be accepting of that. It is compensation for the fact that you have broken their trust. It will be hard for them to think positively right away because as humans, they are bound to think that if they let you go back to university, you might get involved in other situations which are far worse. They will think about what more can go right rather than the other way around.
Therefore, because you are genuinely sorry for your mistake, you need to accept their decision. It may mean that you will be behind in your studies. However, this will be for the best, and when the right time comes, things will work out for the best.
I am certain that if you agree to listen to them, they will realize that you are truly apologetic about the past and want to reconcile. For the time being, you must busy yourself with what you can at home.
Be patient and focus on your intention
Learn from your mistake and vow to never repeat. It is going to be hard to take insults from everyone around you. I can assure you that it will not be easily forgotten, and you may be taunted or insulted about it. However, this by no means should take you away from your intention of being a good person.
Do not dwell on the past
No one is perfect, even a saint once had a bad past. Flawed beginnings do not define you, good endings do. This mistake is a lesson for you. Never trust strangers without letting your parents in on any decisions. Constantly thinking about the past and rethinking about what happened will not change it or make it better but will make your present and your future worst.
When things go wrong, it is hard to keep perspective and see that there is light at the end of the tunnel. When such circumstances come our way, we must learn to trust Allah. We have no other option. Nothing takes place without the will of Allah, and nothing is really designed to harm us in any way, just to make us learn and change for the best.
I pray that things will change for the best between you and your parents.
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