Marriage advice by Hijr Miskeena Rauda el-Miskeen
Marry a sister for her Iman. That is compatibility and a strong foundation. The affection, mercy and pleasure will increase as the marriage goes on. She will also help you enter paradise. Beauty fades. Money comes and goes. Lineage is of no avail if not accompanied with Deen and good manners. Marry a sister for her Deen and you will be prosperous.
How to handle being turned down for marriage
- Go about marriage in the right manner right from the start. Your intention is to please Allah SWT and do an act of worship to attain reward as well as being a means to paradise and also to enjoy the good and pure things in life. If you see someone you like then pray the prayer of Istikhara. Take advice from people and be realistic and practical in your selection. If after that you got rejected then know it is for the good and you went about it the right way. Keep doing good deeds (they are a means for abundant blessings)
- Don’t take a rejection from one person as you being bad. People select marriage partners based on their personal criteria (from culture) and it differs from person to person. In a tribalistic society the only thing that matters is the “status” of the tribe even if you are a righteous person. When a type of village mentality is applied the university degree you possess or your career (e.g medicine or engineering etc) is the only factor taken into consideration even if your intellect is decent. A person from a society that attaches a lot of importance to beauty (determined by the subjective standards of society) might overlook your good traits and even be blind to your beauty as their society has given beauty a narrow definition which their psychology has been configured to. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. You might be stunning one person while very average to another. It comes down to their perception emanating from upbringing, culture, and environment- things to do with them much more than it is to do with you. A person deciding not to buy a two bedroom house because they want five bedrooms isn’t saying the former is bad. Rather they are saying it doesn’t meet their needs and isn’t suitable for them. A lot of the time people aren’t rejecting you. Rather they are rejecting the absence of their personal and subjective criteria (which can be very narrow, shallow and highly biased a lot of the time). Your good characteristics are still present in you. Find someone who appreciates them.
- There is plenty of fish in the sea. Even if someone who you have common values with rejected you find another person who will appreciate the good in you. Don’t cry over spilt milk. Be optimistic and never despair. Know there is someone out there who is a compatible match.
- Have self-awareness and be acquainted with the perceptions of others as well as the societal dynamics. In a materialistic society people are likely to be after money and even go to the extreme of gold digging even if they claim to have higher values or different ones or other ones as well. From the start decide on the feasibility of the marriage and don’t let rejection be your own make.
- Don’t let your heart get too attached. Unnecessary conversing, flirting and dating are forbidden. It takes the blessings out of the marriage or causes shattered hearts when things don’t go ahead after years of communication. Go straight to the guardian. If it is a no then your heart won’t get shattered as nothing of love or affection has even entered.
- Don’t feel mad at the person. It is their right to accept or reject. You are not entitled to anyone. You would do the same if someone you didn’t find compatible came along. Free your heart from grudges and wish well for the person. Supplicate to be blessed with a better spouse
- Learn the lessons. Perhaps the wisdom learnt will be taken into your next proposal and marriage thus causing much more good that wouldn’t have occured were it not for the first rejection.
- Patience. Sometimes it can be very painful to get rejected especially when you had high hopes. Sometimes words of comfort are of little avail. It is fine to feel upset but the calamity is when the heart is shattered and feels hopeless. That is a sign that the heart is attached to other than Allah SWT. Purify your heart from people and worldly things. Repent to Allah SWT and ask Him SWT to fill your heart with Iman. That way you will feel tranquility and happiness.
- Don’t back-bite anyone and don’t talk about it for long. The sooner you forget about it the sooner you can move on and seek benefit elsewhere. Ruminating over what happened isn’t beneficial. Marriage isn’t going ahead so what is the point of discussing the irrelevant details of the rejection?
- Do as many good deeds as you can. Get busy indulging in that which benefits you. Don’t sit around and do nothing- that will exacerbate the over thinking and sadness. When useful endeavours are being undertaken there will be no time to over think the rejection and all the petty things that get magnified when too much time and thought are given to them.
I ask Allah SWT to protect us from all evil and to bless us with the best righteous and pious spouses.
Look at the good in your spouse
There is something called a confirmation bias. If you give your spouse a label of, for instance, lazy, you will look for things to confirm that and when you find them you will think you were right. Give your spouse a good label (though it is actually in them) and you will focus and see the good in them. Or don’t see things in black and white, for example, “My spouse helps a lot but takes a bit too long in their breaks and relaxation” – that is more objective and fair instead of a full exaggerated label of “lazy”.
When someone is really good and makes things easy the other spouse might take it for granted and not appreciate it. If one spouse for example cooks really good food and keeps the home immaculate it might not get appreciated till they have tasted some mediocre or really bad food at another house which lacks hygiene. Don’t let the route to gratefulness to your spouse be by experiencing the blunders or mistreatment from someone else. Some divorcees realize just how good their first spouses were when they experience the unexpected havoc of their second marriage. They took all the blessings of the first espousement for granted and only discovered the bliss they were in by experiencing the pain of the second marriage. Be objective and realize a blessing when you see one.
A believing man mustn’t hate a believing woman. If there is something in her that he hates then there will be another trait that he will like (meaning of a noble Hadith). Focus on the positive traits in order not to notice the negative- that is the best mindset. Or be balanced- if your spouse has some bad qualities then look at the good ones and appreciate them if they outweigh the bad or just focus on appreciating the good in order to forget the negative. Focusing on the negative will cause increased hatred and aversion. Have a positive focus and the marriage will be a good one- just by adopting a positive mindset. Remember, no spouse (including you), is perfect so don’t hold others to high standards (which you can’t meet yourself). Perfection is for Allah SWT only. Only Allah SWT is perfect.
Have realistic expectations
Television and media have affected a lot of people subconsciously whereby they think marriage is lovey-dovey feelings and butterflies 24/7; feelings of intense romance that must never subside and equating their inevitable dissipation or drastic reduction or healthy fluctuations as a failed marriage (leading to divorce). If something so normal and part and parcel of wedlock pops up like paying a bill, a disagreement, a commitment etc they will run away as they see the absence of ardent affectionate feelings and the presence of a bit of hard work as something contrary to marriage. The reality is marriage will have it’s ups and downs, fun and challenges and rights and responsibilities. Another thing is that people will want a spouse or will compare their spouse to the fake glamour on TV and social media. These people need to not expose themselves to fake models in the first place and must come back down to earth so they can recognize natural and genuine beauty.
We as Muslims must lower our gaze. Comparing your spouse to all the other good qualities of others is unfair. No one person will have these qualities. There will be good traits in your spouse that each person who you are comparing your spouse won’t have. Stop comparing and once again focus on the good in your spouse.
Learn to distinguish between inherent traits and situational factors. If your wife has just had a baby, don’t expect her to be in the best condition afterwards. Rather appreciate her hard work, struggle and patience in bearing your child. The men who divorce their wives after child birth because she looked nicer on the honey moon are not real men. Same with the husband if he comes home after a long day of work and wants his space- give it to him and excuse the temporary two minute bad mood (not abuse).
Know it is normal to feel averse at times to your spouse but don’t equate that with a failed marriage. Do something stimulating or even have a short break as to reignite the passion once again. Today there are a lot of divorces and there are many reasons for that. One reason is that any negative feeling or argument or obstacle is handled wrongly and blown way out of proportion. If handled rightly things would be sorted out and minor things would be forgotten.
Marry the Muslim with Deen and good character. A successful marriage is based on compatibility (most important) and chemistry. When the foundation of the marriage is Islam, affection and mercy, then that is stability and strength. The natural alignment of lifestyle choices will make the marriage in harmony and flaws will be easier to overlook. That is because Iman will increase between the two parties and it will be stronger and sweeter than any obstacle that comes in the marriage.
I ask Allah SWT to bless our marriages with Iman, affection, mercy, success, pious offspring that are the coolness of our eyes, tranquility and a means to paradise. Ameen
Peace and blessings of Allah SWT be upon Rasul Allah SAAWS, the mercy to the worlds.