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In Marriage, Pick Your Battles

Every relationship will have its share of disagreements, fights, and arguments. It is very hard to feel loved in times of conflict.

In my younger days, I used to like repeating the popular saying, “I am a lover, not a fighter.”

The saying implied to me that, in order to have a successful marriage, you should love more and fight less.

However, the reality is that you have to be able to love and have healthy conflicts to have a strong relationship and a happy marriage.

Why Is Conflict Important?

Conflict is a part of life, as it exists in most relationships, and it is not necessarily bad.

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Whenever you put two unique individuals together, you are going to have two people who don’t always agree on everything.

In Marriage, Pick Your Battles - About Islam

Two individuals in a relationship can be productive, creating a deeper understanding of each other, closeness, and respect; or they can be destructive, causing resentment, hostility, and separation.

Pick Your Battles

Start with the right frame of mind. Approach conflict as two equals working together to solve a problem.

Choosing your battles is very important. You have to learn when and where to fight and how to love your spouse so you can have a fulfilling marriage.

Fight Technology

While technology has made it easier to communicate, it also causes conflict in marriage.

Some studies indicate that couples who text a lot do not have happy marriages.

When you text, everything is up to interpretation; what you say and the way you meant it may not be received as intended.

Having conversations face-to-face is very important for having productive conversations between you and your spouse.

Fight Money Issues

Money can be a deal-breaker in a marriage. The way a person handles money says a lot about them.

If money is causing a rift in your marriage, have a weekly or monthly meeting at home where you and your spouse can discuss finances.

Resolve all issues calmly. Don’t let money worsen your relationship or communication.

Fight Dishonesty

Marriage counsellor Dr. Frank Gunzberg notes that lying is only one type of dishonesty in marriage.

Don’t omit information they need to draw the correct conclusion or focus on an insignificant fact to avoid admitting a truth you don’t want to admit.

Avoid answering in anger or giving them the silent treatment instead of an answer.

These strategies are dishonest and harmful to your relationship, even when you use them to avoid an argument or to protect your spouse’s feelings.

Fight Infidelity

While infidelity is to blame for many divorces, modern couples commonly cite unreasonable behaviour as the biggest reason behind divorces.

Fight Unrealistic Expectations

One of the great relationship destroyers is unrealistic expectations.

It is about expecting something out of the relationship that the other is ignorant of, unwilling, or unable to provide.

Love and forgive your spouse, communicate to understand, and change your perspective. Rather than giving up on your expectations, keep them realistic.

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About Fatima Bheekoo-Shah
Fatima Bheekoo-Shah is the author of "Saffron" (A collection of personal narratives by Muslim women), a freelance writer and book reviewer. She resides in Gauteng, South Africa. A book nerd and avid reader, Fatima is always looking for her next great read.