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My Parents Want Me to Finish My Studies Before Getting Married. What Do I Do?

Answered by Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil

Question: I have been engaged to my fiancé for three years but he lives in a different country. My parents are insistent that I need to finish my education and get a job first. They feel my fiancé’s visa needs to be sorted first as being away from each other after marriage would be difficult. I really want to be with my fiancé. What should I do?

Answer: Assalamualaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I pray this finds you well. May Allah reward you for reaching out to us.

Marriage

This is a difficult situation. On one hand, you feel ready to get married. On the other hand, your parents want you to wait.

It is important for you to handle this with wisdom and sensitivity. Consider this a test of your character.

Even though I do not know you or your parents, would it be safe to say that they are concerned for you and want to protect you from harm.

A woman has more at stake to lose when a marriage goes sour. Your education is incredibly important, and so is your ability to earn your own money. Marriage, especially when overseas, can be a complex and challenging situation.

I encourage you to read ‘ Before You Tie the Knot: A Guide for Couples
and listen to ‘ Getting Married with Ustadha Shireen Ahmed and Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Parents

I encourage you to do this course to better understand the rank of your parents: Excellence with Parents: How to Fulfill the Rights of Your Parents

It may be difficult for you to understand their perspective, and this is a test for most children. Perform the How Does One Perform The Prayer Of Need (salat al-haja)? for both Allah to soften all of your hear and for Him to grant you greater understanding of each other

Is there any way for you to work together with your parents to solve this together, as a team?

Mediation

Is there an elder in your community or your family who can help to speak to your parents on your behalf? Elders often respond better when they are given counsel by other elders.

Prayer of Guidance

Please perform the Istikhara: The Prayer of Seeking Guidance as many times as you need to for clarity. Watch what Allah unfolds for you, and what He makes easier.

For example, a clear sign that marriage is good for you is your parents changing their minds. A clear sign that marriage is not good for you is continual hardship in your path to getting married.

Support

Who do you have for support? Do you have close friends and family members who can support you?

Is there a culturally-sensitive counsellor you can speak to? I urge you to wake up in the last third of the night and perform tahajjud. May Allah give you both patience, wisdom, and a way out of your tribulation.

Please see:

Love, Marriage and Relationships in Islam: All Your Questions Answered

Wassalam,

[Ustadha] Raidah Shah Idil

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil has spent almost two years in Amman, Jordan, where she learned Shafi’i’ fiqh, Arabic, Seerah, Aqeedah, Tasawwuf, Tafsir and Tajweed. She continues to study with her Teachers in Malaysia and online through SeekersHub Global. She graduated with a Psychology and English degree from University of New South Wales, was a volunteer hospital chaplain for 5 years and has completed a Diploma of Counselling from the Australian Institute of Professional Counsellors. She lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, with her husband, daughter, and mother-in-law.

Difficulty Getting Married Leading to Resentment and Depression

Answered by Dr. Bano Murtuja

Question: After many years of unsuccessfully trying very hard to get married, I became frustrated and started having negative thoughts.

I went off to medical school where I have been struggling with being happy by reminding myself that I came here because this is what Allah has made available to me and trying to focus on the positive things.

I keep thinking to myself what is so wrong with me that I cannot get married when everyone else around me is getting married or having kids. It makes me feel like I am never going to get married or have kids and then I do not want to live life anymore because all my future entails is dealing with difficulty and the burden of being single and constantly being reminded of it. I see how Allah is so generous with others, but I feel like I am struggling to be good now when it was easy before.  I repent from my bad thoughts, but then I relapse.

I feel that if I got married that would mean that Allah accepted my repentance, but the fact that I’m single and in this vicious cycle is a sign that Allah does not like me and maybe I am beyond hope. I feel like I am growing farther from Allah and no matter what I do I can never get back and that Allah maybe has given up on me and I have become one of those people who no matter what they do Allah will not guide them on the straight path.

Answer: Thank you for your email. May God make all of your trials easier to bear and grant you ease in all of your affairs inshaAllah.

I would like to begin by saying that often the trials we face can feel insurmountable, and can result in confusion and doubt. it is important that one does not let these very natural reactions define who one is.

The search for a marriage partner can often result in disappointment and the tendency to look at one’s life in terms of what is absent rather than what one has.

MashaAllah, from your email it is evident that you are trying not to get sucked in by the feelings of discontent that you have. The first step to dealing with a difficulty is acknowledging that it is there, and it is a blessing from Allah that you not only see your discontent for what it is, but are actively trying to combat it. I pray that you are granted success and ease in doing so.

There are a number of practical steps that you can take that may help you in a) becoming more content with the life that Allah has decreed for you and b) making you happier and more focused in what you are currently doing.

1] on a daily basis count the number of blessings Allah has bestowed upon you. This is a very positive exercise in making us realize that the blessings we do have are so many and yet we deserve so little. In doing this you will hopefully begin to combat the feelings of who deserves what, as it will help you realize we are all undeserving of even the smallest of blessings and yet in His infinite generosity Allah continues to bestow us with them. From the breathes that we take, to the ability to see, to the family that we have etc.

2] In blessings, know that they are not bestowed in accordance to one’s degree of worthiness, but in accordance to God’s wisdom. His infinite Knowledge encompasses what is best for us, regardless of what we may think we know.

3] Continue to make dua and make regular and consistent remembrance. God Most High says, “Truly it is in the remembrance of God that hearts find rest” (The Qur’an, 13:28). He also says, “And if My servants ask thee about Me – behold, I am near; I respond to the call of him who calls, whenever he calls unto Me: let them, then, respond unto Me, and believe in Me, so that they might follow the right way.”

4] Have a good opinion of God. Know that if He has inspired you to ask for forgiveness He will forgive. God loves those who ask for repentance, and tells us as much. To be loved by God is an incredible station. To be one who asks for repentance and joins that fold is a true blessing.

Some people are tested and bought closer to God through their marriage – they have difficult marriages, and horrible experiences but find that through them they are bought closer to the Divine. Others are tested and bought closer to God by staying single. In His infinite Knowledge God knows what is best for us.

5 times a day we ask God to guide us to the right path during the surah fatiha. That you are still turning to God, still seeking guidance, still striving to achieve contentment with Him shows you are on the path to Him, and so should not worry about guidance per se. God tells us to ask Him, and guarantees an answer to our prayers, but in the time and manner He knows is best for us and not the time and manner we choose. You can take comfort from all of this inshaAllah. There is always hope, because God is infinitely Merciful and has told us to never lose hope in him inshaAllah.

Although it is easier said than done, please try not to feel alone. God is always with you, and sends you love, friendship and strength in ways you never even realize.

May God grant you ease, success and facilitation in everything you do.

And Allah alone grants success.

Ma’salam

Bano