I didn't have a good intention going into a relationship with him in the beginning but now alhamdolillah I do.
My question is how can I repent from what I've done to him?
Do I need to confess that I might have caused him pain intentionally and that I wasn't that pure in my intentions with him at the beginning?
This person is extremely good to me and would be a great spouse but I had a lot of issues with myself that lead me to treat him badly.
I feel extremely bad. God knows how much I regret it and I'm afraid of Allah's punishment for what I caused him.
In this counseling answer:
Allah supports those who live according to His teachings.
We repent, we work on becoming better and then leave the past mistakes in the past to Allah.
Pre-marital relationship will not help you decide who suits you.
Have a sense of what your triggers are and how to handle them when they arise.
Thank you for reaching to us for help.
I understand that you are in a pre-marital relationship with a man. Because of your own personal issues, you caused him a lot of emotional pain.
You realized your mistakes towards him and you are thinking of apologizing to him. You realized he is a good person you wish to live the rest of your life with.
You do not want to lose him. Also, you are afraid of Allah’s punishment for treating him bad.
Allah supports those who live according to His teachings
First and foremost, I am sure you are aware that being in a relationship with the opposite gender is not what Allah wants us to do. I do not want to be the “haram police” here, but please read my thoughts as they are based on experience and statistics and I believe they will be really helpful to you.
Allah told us to not let our desire control us. He wants us to be wise and make wise decisions. He encourages us to get married, but warns us to stay away from other types of intimate relationships.
Not because He wants to be bossy over us, but because it is good for us. He knows us better than yourself.
He has promised that If you do your best to live a life according to Allah’s teachings, He will be always supporting you.
In a hadeeth qudsi, He says: “If you come to Me walking, I will come to you running.” (Bukhari)
In another hadith qudsi, Allah (SWT) says, “My servant does not come closer to Me with anything more dear to Me than that which I made obligatory upon him. My servant keeps coming closer to Me with more volunteer deeds, until I love him…” ****(Bukhari)
So this is one reason you might be in this situation now – because Allah wants you to learn that He will only support your relationship with this man if you both do things in a halal way.
Pre-marital relationship will not help you decide who suits you
If the best way to get to know one another for marriage was having a premarital relationship, then there would not be much divorce and relationship problems in the West. But this is not the case as we know.
Marriage counselors are getting rich for rescuing marriages. They write thousands of books on what makes a marriage successful and what you need to do to make sure you have chosen the right person.
All agree that if you want to know who is the right person for you. It is not going to be through sweet talks, not through getting intimate (even if it is just holding hands) and spending a few nice hours together watching a film or chit-chatting in a restaurant.
These are nice moments which all couples need of course – when they have already done the harder part, answered the hard questions, analyzed the other enough to RATIONALLY DECIDE. That yes, this is the partner who matches my lifestyle, my world view, and my future vision, inshallah.
Feelings of attraction + good answers for good questions = successful, long-lasting marriage
This applies to Muslims as well. We should not just get married because the man has good reputation in the mosque, he “seems to be” a good Muslim because he prays and fasts.
Oh, we need much more information about the person. Because Muslims are not “copy paste” creatures – there is diversity among them, even if they all follow one religion.
How you should seek a husband is by asking the right questions and watching the potential partner’s behavior with others.
Please listen to this video on how to chose your partner. It will help you a lot, inshallah. ☺
This is why involving the family and parents in the marriage decision is so important, according to Islam. You can observe the details – if you know what you are looking for and what you need to notice.
This leads to another very important point.
Check out this counseling video:
Entering marriage without self-awareness is dangerous
You mentioned that you “I had a lot of issues with myself that lead me to treat him badly.”
I am not sure what issues are these, but it raises an important point in regard to marriage.
If you do not know yourself, if you have issues with yourself, you are unable to get to know another person well.
You do not know what questions you need to ask,
You do not know what you need to look for in his behavior and interaction with others.
You risk showing an image of yourself to him that is not true – and you are not even aware that you are not honest.
Sounds philosophical maybe, but without knowing why you feel, think, and do things in a way you do, how you will know that this man’s feelings, way of thinking and actions are truly matching yours?
If you have issues with yourself, you will eventually harm the other person in one way or another.
To clarify this point, let me quote from an informative article on how self-awareness is crucial for finding your spouse.
“Your trigger zone”
Have you ever been upset by something your partner said or something that happened but didn’t fully understand why? Or maybe you’ve had the same argument repeatedly with your soon-to-be spouse and can’t seem to find resolution? It’s likely these mysterious emotional events are caused by unidentified emotional triggers.
We all have emotional triggers, or certain situations or words that can expose old emotional wounds. Your partner might unintentionally do something that evokes memories of being bullied, betrayed, or falsely accused in the past.
So, if you have issues with yourself due to a past trauma or a current stressor in your life, please work on these before entering into a marriage.
As Muslims, we know that repenting for our shortcomings and mistakes is part of our daily life.
“…And turn to Allah in repentance, all of you, O believers, that you might succeed.” (24:31)
We are encouraged to seek Allah’s repentance for things we know we have done wrong, and things we are not aware. This helps us keep us humble and aware, and to succeed at the end, biznillah.
In your case, I would first of all start repenting for Allah. For letting the desires overcome and get into a pre-marital relationship. For not working on self-awareness and personal issues and hurting another human being.
This is an informative article about how to repent.
There is no need to feel continuously guilty about our pasts sins. We do not repent to feel guilty all the time. We repent, we work on becoming better and then leave the past mistakes in the past to Allah.
“When the believer commits sin, a black spot appears on his heart. If he repents and gives up that sin and seeks forgiveness, his heart will be polished. But if (the sin) increases, (the black spot) increases. That is the Ran that Allah mentions in His Book: ‘Nay! But on their hearts is the Ran (covering of sins and evil deeds) which they used to earn.’” [Sunan Ibn Majah]
You asked whether you should ask forgiveness from the man you hurt.
The prophet said: „“Fear Allah wherever you may be; follow up an evil deed with a good one which will wipe (the former) out , and behave good-naturedly towards people.” [At-Tirmidhi]
The Prophet Muhammad (S) has said, “O’ ‘Ali! My intercession shall not reach the person who does not accept the apology from another person – whether the apology is truthful or untruthful.”
If you feel you need to apologize for something, then do so. This will calm you down and better the relationship, of course.
I hope I can be of help!
I wish you all the best, may Allah put love and mercy in your marriage inshallah.
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.