Islam puts a lot of emphasis on marriage as the cornerstone of a thriving community and nearly all Muslims who “qualify” to marriage are encouraged to seek out spouses in order to fulfill half of their deen.
However, while in search of Mr. Right or Ms Perfect, the realities of marriage are sometimes lost.
While marriage is certainly a gateway to multitudes of blessing and an important form of Ibadah (worship), it also requires a lot of work.
Marriage doesn’t simply end in a “Happily After,” after vows of solemnization are exchanged, but in turn it’s the beginning of a life long journey; a partnership to Jannah for the sake of Allah.
More articles written by Maria Zain:
In the modernity of marriage, it always seems that after a while, marriage seems to be a drone. Maybe it’s because media and culture dictate that marriage seems somewhat backwards, boring and a gateway to misery. Maybe it’s because we take our marriages for granted, that there’s always someone to go home to.
Perhaps the excitement of being newlyweds quickly fades as the months roll by. Communication lines tend to break down. The radar of being young, happy and deliriously in love become hazy and merge into ambits that involve complaining, backbiting and ingratitude.
There are possibly a few reasons that could cause such entanglement in communication lines, amongst a handful of others – but whatever it is, communication fixer uppers are in tow, provided that we are able to find the problem at hand...
|Whatever the problem is, it’s important to talk about it as spouses, as consultants and as confidantes.|
Money, money, money...
Yes, in today’s modern age of marriage, money is almost always an issue. Financial pressures nowadays rest on both husband and wife amidst global inflation. Things can get even more strained when there are children and / or elderly parents to care for. This can happen regardless of whether one or both spouses work.
Although money problems are very real issues, it is important to remember that Allah has already provided the tools to overcome such challenges. As a family, working together to resolve such problems is vital.
What is the problem, though? Are you over-spending? Are you overwhelmed with debt? Do you feel the strain of holding down two jobs but not making headway for the future?
Whatever the problem is, it’s important to talk about it as spouses, as consultants and as confidantes.
Finances can be a very private issue that is misconstrued when discussed with outsiders of the relationship, even with well-meaning parents. So keep financial woes within, thrash them out and plan for the present and the future. Get out of debt, curb excessiveness, constantly feel grateful for whatever you have been blessed with, no matter how small, and remember to give to those who are less fortunate.
A positive outlook coupled with financial planning, plenty of du’aa, and perhaps the recitation of Surah Waqi`ah are important facets to deal with money challenges.
Work together as a team in order to overcome this slight obstacle. True riches lie in our piety and a lot of our piety lies in our patience in dealing with hardship; and one of those hardships could very well be financial ones.
|Speak to each other with earnestly and sincerity. Keep an open heart to what the other is saying and speak kindly.|
We Don’t Have Enough Time for Each Other...
Modern times do translate into less time for each other. Ironic, isn’t it? But there’s a Hadith that talks about how longer periods of time convene into shorter periods of time. A year seems like a month and a month seems like a week; and all this, even with instant food and online shopping.
Make time. Despite the hustle and bustle of getting caught in traffic congestion and running laps around chores, make time for each other. One of the two blessings that is often overlooked and taken for granted is time.
So, create a date-night. Switch off your phones and all corresponding electronic devices. Pack up all work assignments and put the kids to bed early. Make time for each other, even if it means just sharing fruit juice on the sofa. Make time and catch up. How was your week? Did you meet anyone interesting? Are you planning anything for next month? What was your favorite color again?
Take time to talk. It could be about nothing at first especially when it feels strange to be alone and relaxed, but after a while, the effort to rekindle a romance comes naturally. Speak to each other with earnestly and sincerity. Keep an open heart to what the other is saying and speak kindly.
Surely, when two people speak in kindness to each other, Allah blesses them with even more happiness and cohesiveness in their relationship.
|And while you’re working hard to deal with the challenges children throw at you, always remind yourself that your kids thrive in a family that is secure and happy.|
Having Children is a Lot of Hard Work...
It is. Working on a marriage over and above changing diapers, calming toddler tantrums, shuffling homework, handing out chores, preparing enough meals and snacks in between, making sure everyone gets hugged four times a day, and dealing with possible teenage angst is hard work. It is.
Children take up a lot of time and energy in a marriage and sometimes parents can feel like they’re running in circles when dealing with issues involving their children. There’s no one easy solution in handling children, but that’s what makes them so special.
Having children helps us grow into mature, considerate and responsible adults, who are constantly reminded of the miracles of Allah – the creation of new human beings who are our responsibility in this world.
And while you’re working hard to deal with the challenges children throw at you, always remind yourself that your kids thrive in a family that is secure and happy. A happy partnership between mum and dad is vital for a stable home to raise happy and healthy children. As much as time is spent taking care of and raising children, make time again to work on your relationship with your spouse.
Coming on together in order to raise your children is one of the main mutual grounds for you and your spouse. Rerun those moments of pregnancy and meeting your newborn for the first time. Cherish what it was like to become parents to a little baby. These are the moment that Allah has given you a great gift to bless your marriage.
Once you remember how amazing the blessings of children are, working on your relationship becomes something that is natural and symbiotic. Again, find the time and energy to work on your relationship as husband and wife before moving on to becoming mum and dad. After all, that’s how the kids came into existence in the first place.
Work together to establish new family traditions that your children will remember. Work on family goals that will help your children stay focused on their deen and always work to please Allah, and no one else.
Tell your children you love them every day and let them thrive in a supportive environment that is non-judgmental and free from prejudice.
|Allah provided you with a spouse to complete the other half of your faith and to act as your garment. What a gift.|
We’re Just Rolling with the Motions...
Perhaps marital life just got a tad boring. The spark has dimmed, the flames have waned a little... and you feel like you’re just rolling with the days as they go by – routine after routine, hour after hour.
Again, perhaps it’s time to take a step back and look at what is missing. It’s probably just time and energy – and you have to make up for that.
Take a second honeymoon, or even third. Take time off from the world, just for a little while, to spend time with your spouse. A weekend down memory lane may remove all the stress and distractions you’re facing and rejuvenate your relationship.
Sometimes it’s worth taking a step back to continue the journey forwards.
Renewing Intentions to Please Allah...
At the end of the day (or at the beginning), remember to renew your intentions for the sake of Allah.
Allah provided you with a spouse to complete the other half of your faith and to act as your garment. What a gift.
Your spouse has been pre-determined, so working on this special relationship is a strong form of Ibadah for the sake of Allah.
Love your spouse to please Allah, work together as confidantes and partners in this relationship, and make plenty of du’aa that your relationship becomes a gateway to Jannah.
Everything else – God-willing - will fall into place.
Related Links:A Happy Marriage Makes a Healthy Family (Folder)
Marriage of Muslims in America
Marriage Is the Prophet’s Sunnah
How to Keep a Successful Islamic Marriage