Wa ‘Aleikom Salam Sister,
You are very sweet, and you have superior insight into your own situation. I can truly appreciate the feelings of being “thrown off balance” and the pain of questioning one’s self, as well as the feelings of hurt and betrayal when someone we trusted seems to take advantage of our trust and our vulnerability. Please, do not waste time judging yourself, or blaming yourself, or questioning yourself. This is an opportunity to grow to a higher level, in sha’ Allah.
This is a situation that is common among young women today, so please do not feel alone. Women today have very little support in these matters, so I do not want you to be so hard on yourself. The important thing is that you are reaching out for the support that you need and deserve, and you are drawing near to Allah who has never ending love for you.
There is a lesson in this experience. It is that we are human and no matter how hard we try, we will never be perfect on our own, using our own will. The reality is that we can be perfected only in and by Allah. This is humbling and when we truly realize the depths of this truth, we will be closer to salvation as this truth will compel us to turn to Allah.
When you are turning to Allah for your guidance, for your strength, for your sense of feeling good about yourself, you will not need pride and self respect so much as you will experience true dignity. I hope this makes sense. I do attempt to describe a state of consciousness with these words. The further you move away from self, and toward a soulful relationship with Allah, the more contentment you will feel within yourself, and the less vulnerable you will be to pleasing others, and being addicted to their love and approval.
The only love and approval you truly need is the Love and Approval of Allah. You are on your way to this end as you have experienced the futility of putting your hopes and your life in another human being’s hand. All humans will fall short of perfection. This is the secret to salvation. This knowledge will help you find perfection in Allah. This secret will give you the strength to keep your values and live in this world temporarily while not being a part of it. This secret will tear down the veils of illusion that keep you hostage to the oppression of the world’s collective misguided and ignorant ways of perceiving, judging, and behaving.
Know this sister: like the law of gravity, the spiritual and moral laws are put in motion by Allah and no other. Thus, you feel the consequences of your actions just as a person who jumps off a tall building with no safety supports below will suffer the consequences of that action.
However, we are also on this Earth to learn. Who is to judge your path except for Allah? The most merciful and loving outcome of this entire Epoch is that you did “lose yourself”. Now, you can find yourself, in sha’ Allah. Some human beings have to be exhausted of all their own devises and rendered completely confused and lost before they are humbled enough to come to Allah in true purity. It is a blessing when Allah brings us to this place. It is here that we can surrender in all honesty and truth, in purity, to Allah, our whole life.
You have this opportunity now sister, and that is, indeed, a gift. Please do not re-create yourself. This is what the secular community would have you do. This is what a secular psychologist would help you do. But I am here to encourage you to find your true self.
Instead of developing yet another new identity with new defenses and new barriers to true relationship with Allah, you have the opportunity to focus on relationship with Allah and be open to His will and protected by Him. He will be the Creator of your values and the keeper of your integrity. He will be the source of your dignity. He will bring you “new life” as you are so sincere in your repentance that you have become exceptionally beautiful and attractive to all who have a desire to do good for the sake of Allah.
Anything we feel compelled to do or engage in that takes us away from our relationship with Allah is an addiction at some level. The best way to break such addictions is to practice prayer. The practical advice is to take this time to develop a schedule that will work for you. Make your schedule around your prayer times. We can talk about working on getting back into the practice of prayer if you are having difficulty remembering to do them. We will replace old habits of thinking and behaving with new patterns.
Eventually, your mind will erase the obsession that it is harboring about this person as you use prayer to reset the mind. This obsession is in your mind, not your soul, so this process will not be as difficult as you might think. It just takes some effort. You have already identified the problem and that is half the solution.
As far as the brain and psychology of men is concerned, realize that this generation of men is suffering as much as the women. They are confused. They don’t know what makes a man a man. They have a need to bond and marry just as Allah has created them, but the whispers of the world take them in many directions that are not good for them either. This man who made mistakes with you may or may not be aware of his own demise, but leave that to Allah. Your job is to focus on developing spiritually and to reset. If you do this, you will come to know that Allah has a destiny for you. If and when Allah has a husband for you, you will marry, and this man will respect you.
May Allah help you,
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