Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Thank you for participating in the session.
Please find the 4 questions to which our counselor provided answers. If you do not find yours here, check out our upcoming session or submit it there again.
Thank you for your understanding.
Question 1. Marriage
I thought marriage was supposed to bring me peace.
It was made to bring us peace but anytime someone mentions marriage or I get any kind of proposal it makes me stress and despise the person who mentioned marrying me.
Is there something wrong with me or am I just confused?
Salam alaikom sister,
Thank you for writing,
There is probably nothing wrong with you; you just may need to get to the point where you feel that you are ready to get married and know what you are looking for.
Marriage is supposed to bring us peace and tranquility, but that does not mean that marriage is not a lifelong journey. There are ups and downs, and it takes hard work and commitment and requires constant and mutual effort from both sides. It is very important to set realistic goals for marriage and be conscious that this does not mean that when you enter marriage, you suddenly reach peace and happiness.
Conflict also happens, and that is inevitable during marriage. What couples learn over the years is how to respond to these conflicts in a respectful manner, with understanding and a willingness to compromise.
However, there are some things you can consider before you enter the marriage that would help you decrease the chance of huge disagreements.
With this being said, I advise the following:
There is no hurry, sister. Please try not to rush things if you do not feel ready. You have to feel when it is time to make a lifelong commitment. It is not up to your family members and friends, but to you.
So, take your time and get prepared for marriage by knowing your needs, your goals and values, and the main traits you have and are looking for in a partner.
Write down the things you think you need in a partner. Then try to rank them in order of priority: what are the must-haves? Write down your dealbreakers too.
Try to analyze the list and separate core values from attitudes and traits.
For example, core values revolve around family life, the deen, communication issues, the way to deal with money, parenting, etc.
Attitudes are: like doing sports, like traveling, reading, football, Asian food, etc.
Traits are like being correct, just, sincere, funny, serious, hard-working, responsible, creative, etc.
What are yours? Write them down, and also write down what you would like to see and what you definitely do not want in your future spouse.
This is a good starting point when you start looking for someone.
Know, that the most important thing is that you match in your core values and that you have matching personalities. There are things like attitudes that can be easier to adapt to and accept if they differ from yours.
For example, you might like Asian food while your future spouse likes Italian. That is something you can more easily adjust and compromise on than, for example, having totally different views on how to spend money or what it means to practice your religion.
Try to ask yourself: What makes you stressed about the situation? Do you have some specific fears about marriage? Try to analyze your thoughts around it; that may bring you closer to the answer.
While doing so, try to focus on other things you enjoy and do right now and know that they are in the hands of Allah. It is already written when and to whom you will marry, so put your trust in Him and know that when the time has come, you will know that.
May Allah make it easy for you.
Question 2. Resenting parents
I could have got married when I was 30 years old to a person, I met on an online marriage site, it was always in a halal way that we communicated and when we met we both met we had chaperones. When my family met with hers, my parents told me her family was too different from ours. At the time it broke my heart and hers but we decided to not go ahead as my parents would never let us be happy.
I was 30 then, and I thought I was being a good son by listening to my parents, since then whenever marriage was brought up by my uncles my mother would always say he need a job or this or that….
I was working for the family business when I could of gotten married.
Now I am 37 years old and I feel hopeless and alone and feel like no women will want to be with me, I have never committed any zina or has haram relationships, I fear potentials will see it as a negative that I have not been married and I am this old or something is wrong with me or that I am lying.
I have a lot or resentment towards my parents now, I try and console myself by reminding myself that I have not committed haram for the sake of Allah and In’sh’Allah soon I will be rewarded for my patience.
Salam alaikom wa rahmatullah brother,
Thank you for reaching out to us.
I understand that you had a chance to get married 7 years ago, when you were 30, but your parents said that her family was different, so you did not proceed further.
You work for the family business and can afford to marry, but your parents always come up with excuses.
By now, you are feeling resentful towards them, even if you have not committed haram for the sake of Allah.
Masallah, you seem to be a person with strong willpower, self-control, and faith in Allah, as you have successfully resisted zina.
Brother, your feelings of resentment are really understandable, as it seems that your parents present obstacles to your marriage plans.
But I would like to remind you that it is actually your determination and final word that matter when it comes to your marriage.
It is about your life and your future partner, so it will be you who is going to join your life with someone else. Your willingness and compatibility matter, and while you certainly have to be open to your parents’ opinions, the final decision should be yours.
There are certain conditions a man has to fulfill in order to be able to marry; these are mainly financial issues (to be able to maintain his future wife and pay her mahr). Plus, there are prophetic recommendations about what to prioritize in your future spouse, namely, her religiosity.
So, if you are economically ready, you find someone with compatible values, goals, and character, and both of you have a commitment to grow together in the deen, there should be no obstacles from your parents’ side.
Naturally, every parent will look into the family their son is going to marry into, and of course, if there is mutual sympathy, that will be a plus. But, at the end, the marriage is between you and her and not between your family and hers.
With this being said, let me advise you on the following:
Do not worry; it is never too late, brother.
Yes, some past opportunities may have passed. But instead of thinking about those, try to make a good plan in the present and take action now.
Only Allah knows, but maybe for some reason you needed those feelings of resentment to realize that you needed to stand up for your needs and wishes and get along with your plan, especially if that is in line with Islamic teachings.
And marriage is half of our deen, and surely you deserve a wife, a family, and the contentment that comes from a marriage.
I am not sure what the reasons are behind your parents delay in your marriage. Have you had an honest and sincere conversation about them? What are their fears? Are their concerns in line with Islamic conditions?
If not, you may sit down with them and let them know that you are planning to marry, and unless there are no Islamic obstacles, you are expecting their support and positive attitude towards your plans.
So, make the decision that you will start looking for a partner. Write down your core values—the ones you need in a partner—those things that really matter to you. You can also write a list of the “must not”s and your dealbreakers. It’s worth thinking about them before the marriage.
I also would like to reassure you that there is no need to fear that future candidates are going to question why you were not married before, etc.
Actually, what you can do is be transparent and give sincere answers to them.
I think the truth about yourself—control and loyalty—is quite appealing, so there is nothing to be ashamed of. And as we mature, we come to realize things, gain wisdom and strength, and reach a point where we can easily overcome some perceived obstacles.
You might have reached this point, in sha Allah, so there is nothing wrong with you, alhamdulillah.
If you find a compatible candidate and you feel that everything matches while you still face disagreement from your parents, please turn to a local imam or a religious, trustworthy person and seek help and support.
He can mediate between you and your parents and help them understand what are valid concerns and what are not, and what happens if they delay your marriage for unjustified reasons.
Your parents need to understand that one day they will stand up in front of Allah and be questioned for not letting you get married due to insignificant and invalid reasons.
What matters, brother, is that in the sight of Allah, your intentions are pure and clear, and you try to fulfill His command.
May Allah make it easy for you, brother. I wish you success and a happy marriage,
Question 3. Anxiety
Salam. So, I have been really struggling with not having much motivation. Once I’m home from school, I don’t want to do homework or anything. I’m in a bigger class now so the work load is more and this is why I don’t want to work, especially with math because I don’t like math. Another thing is that I have many awful habits which I can’t get rid of, one of them being that a year ago, for entertainment, I started to imagine random scenarios in my head for fun before bed and I didn’t think it was wrong until I started doing this every night, nowadays I can’t fall asleep without imagining. I have characters and everything, it’s not a proper story though but I love imagining random scenarios
Salam alaikom sister,
Thank you for writing to us.
You say that you do not really feel motivated enough. You say there is more work load, which is why you do not want to work, especially math, as you do not like it.
Sister, this is something quite normal. If we do not really like something or feel that we are not good enough at it, it takes more effort to focus on and deal with it.
Even, if you have more work now, you may feel overwhelmed by the fact that so many things have to be done that you would rather not even start them, which is also leading to distress as you do not proceed as you should.
So, one thing that you can do is break down your tasks into smaller pieces and focus on them one by one. Do not try to climb the whole mountain at once, just go step by step. When you are done with some exercises, reward yourself with “Well done.”
Give yourself a huge smile, take a short break when you do what you like, etc. You deserve a reward for your efforts, even though no one is actually there to acknowledge that. Do it for yourself!
The other thing you can do is ignore negative thoughts about math, for example.
If you start doing your homework with the thought in your mind, “I hate this”, for example, this will probably also create disgust or negative feelings and lead you towards rejection and an unwillingness to work on it.
Try to think something else, like, “This math is not my favorite, but Allah wants me to deal with it, so there must be some benefit in that.”
Or think about a reward you will give yourself once you are done. The important thing is to transform these negative thoughts about your studies.
Try to schedule your afternoon and give yourself time for fun and positive activities and hobbies. For example, decide that after you are done, you go for a walk, exercise, talk to some friends, etc.
Regular exercise, spending time outdoors, and healthy food and sleep are essential to keeping our energy levels high. If you feel that you are very tired and sleepy, you might check your iron levels and see whether you suffer from anemia, for example.
Furthermore, if these changes in your routine do not help you and you feel depressed and have no motivation to do anything, you might have to consult a specialist to assess whether there are some mental health problems behind them, like depression.
Check out this article for more.
There is nothing wrong in my opinion with imaging scenarios until it does not affect your regular sleep and proper relaxation and you do not indulge in fantasies that are unislamic in nature.
If you catch yourself spending too much time “daydreaming”, like escaping from reality and from your tasks by “being somewhere else,” then try to limit these imaginations and set a specific time each day when you let yourself watch and imagine.
Too much daydreaming can be an attempt to reduce distress from your duties and school tasks that feel like a burden and you prefer not to deal with them.
But if you do not reach this extent, I think there is nothing wrong with that. You can even think about writing them down and using them as creative self-expression and a hobby.
May Allah help you, sister,
Question 4. Husband financially not responsible
Hope this mail finds you well.
I got interested with the videos you have in Youtube, specifically about the husband financially irresponsible, what shall I do.
I am in almost the same situation and I would like to seek your advice.
We’ve been married less than a year and don’t have kids yet. From the beginning of our relationship and marriage my husband doesn’t have work since he lost the job due to the world and economic situation in pandemic. Since then, I’m providing everything financially including all things which are not that necessary or needed (not the basic needs of daily life / satisfaction of material things) which takes a toll on my finances in the long run. Now, that my husband got work and able to have income and very much capable to provide the basic needs financially in our marriage and relationship, he wanted out. He’s been having the idea of separation and divorce. Since he got the job, he never provided financially and still refuses to provide. He says he will does, he will pay, he will give but he never do. He makes promises to pay but he never does even the basic needs and bills. I do everything, handle finances and pay bills.
Currently, he left the house. He got his own place and renting. He paid a rent there but he never gives and willing to pay our rent, not even half of it.
I feel he’s so unfair and being selfish towards me. He spent he’s income with shopping and spending on material things which he wants for himself. I never question or ask him about he’s salary, I’m not that kind of person. Because he’s my husband, I expect him to be responsible for us and provide us financially now he’s capable of doing that. Before that he doesn’t have work and source of income, I never force him to do, but now that I know he’s capable I think it’s fair enough that he must provide and help out financially in our marriage, even just have of it.
As I’ve mentioned, he said he wanted out of our marriage. He said, before he want us and married but now he said he change and don’t want to be in this marriage.
This only started, since he got the job opportunity.
I believe in the sanctity of marriage. I wanted to keep this marriage and have family as what we both hope for since we started our relationship.
I’d like to ask for your advice and point of view on what to do on this situation.
I’ve been hopeful to save our marriage and that our relationship will be back good and better. But also, I’ve been skeptic since he’s not making effort for us and in our relationship; and specifically, regarding he’s financial responsibility that he’s not doing. Just my thoughts is, what if we get back together but he still don’t want to fulfill he’s duties and responsibilities, then I would feel like I’m in relationship alone because he’s not doing he’s part as a husband and a partner.
Yes,I want this marriage and have our family. But I need him, my husband, to be responsible in our relationship and as a responsible partner. I need him to do he’s duties and responsibilities and not make false promises.
Hope to hear from you soon. Thank you for your time and advice.
Salam alaikom dear sister,
Thank you for turning to us.
I hope my response can offer you some guidance about your concern.
You have been married for less than a year. You say that your husband did not work at the beginning of your marriage and therefore did not provide for you. Now he has a job and could afford your maintenance and pay the basic expenses, but he does not do so. He promises it again and again, but it does not happen.
And he has also been thinking about divorce and separation and has rented a flat for himself.
Sister, I am not sure whether you talked about the Islamic duties of husband and wife in a marriage prior to your union. I am not sure to what extent you abide by Islamic teachings and have religion in your lives regarding marriage. Also, I am not sure whether, at any point, you have discussed finances before entering into marriage.
I am saying this because, in this aspect, Islam is very clear about the roles and expectations of a husband and a wife. And it means that a husband is responsible for his household and for the financial expenses. This is his primary and main duty. Please read more about your rights here.
Of course, this does not mean that a woman cannot add to the expenses if she wishes so, but this is considered “charity” from her and not a duty.
Of course, there are societies that require a double income in order to maintain a standard of living. In real life, there are many types of scenarios. Also, there are crises and situations, like yours, where a husband loses his job and is unable to provide.
But this cannot be a permanent excuse to refuse to fulfill his duties.
So, in this aspect, sister, this is something that has to be his responsibility, regardless of you. No matter who her wife is, he should assume this role in the marriage. If she does not want to, this can be a valid reason for divorce. Please check this out.
On the other hand, it seems that there are some other issues between both of you that go beyond finances.
From your letter, it seems that he does not want to continue with this marriage and has left your common home.
You say you would like to save your marriage.
I would like to point out that when there is a problem in a marriage, both sides have to have the willingness to work on the disagreements and commit themselves to it.
If one does not want to do that, unfortunately, not many things can be done, even in professional marriage counseling.
So, first, I would ask you to sit down and think about what you gain from this marriage.
Why would you like to stay? You say you believe in the sanctity of marriage, which is indeed a basic foundation for us Muslims.
But my question is: can this marriage be called something like this? Do you think that your needs are fulfilled? According to your letter, I am not sure, sister.
What made you marry him? Are you happy now with him?
Please make a list and answer these questions. It would be important for you to come to realize whether, in this marriage, you can find tranquility, compatibility in goals and values, and whether you will get closer to Allah and the deen or not.
This is especially important now, before you are going to have children together, because that will make it much more complicated and difficult to address conflict.
Your needs, which you mention towards the end of your letter, are valid. You need a husband who is responsible, takes care of you and his duties, and does not make false promises. Sister, know that these expectations are fine.
So, I kindly ask you, sister, to think about not the importance of marriage in your life but the importance of this particular relationship and decide whether it is worth working on it or not.
If you think yes, you still need the willingness of your husband. Talk to him and ask him about his plans and his concerns.
If you love each other and want to work on a better relationship, I advise you to seek marriage counseling, preferably with a Muslim counselor, and try to improve your relationship together.
May Allah make it clear and help you with it,
Monday, May. 15, 2023 | 09:00 - 10:00 GMT
Views expressed by hosts/guests on this program (live dialogue, Facebook sessions, etc.) are their own and their appearance on the program does not imply an endorsement of them or any entity they represent.