To marry....or not to marry...?

>> Tuesday, October 26, 2010

as salam dear little aunty :)

I found your blog and saw you gave advice on marriage issues so i thought i would send in my question. I’m only 21 and not planning to get married, but in the past few months, there have been three good guys hinting to my family that they want to propose. Now these good guys 'disturbed' my feelings and i can't barely sleep very well --> due to over-thinking. my state of heart is in a confused situation. i know i shouldn't think about them that much since i am not planning to get married so soon but at the same time, i just can't help it. the thing is my mother really likes one of the guys and she says i should consider him. But i never thought I would be married so soon.
Oh, i’m just so lost and confused……

what should i do, little aunty?

A Confused Lady

Dear a Confused Lady,

I so know what you’re going through. I had something similar happen- a great guy came and asked for my hand in marriage. The thing was I was completely anti-marriage at that point and I really thought I was too young- I was 19 years old. I had also only finished one year of university. Anyways, in that one meeting where my parents were there, I felt he was a good guy. And my dad loved him- he was that kind of guy…he had a good education, a good job prospect, was religious, etc. but I just couldn’t imagine myself getting married so young. So guess what smart thing I did? Yeah….I said no.  Now, a couple of suitors later and fast forward a few years and I often find myself thinking I was an idiot!

So why am I sharing with you this story?

Well, it’s simple, really. Many of us imagine that once we graduate from university, get a job, have worked a bit, then and only then, the right guy is going to magically appear. Like our knight in shining armor is just waiting for us to decide when we want to get married to come along and ask for our hand in marriage. We’ve got it all worked out in our minds- just like a Hollywood scripted movie- but the reality is much more different.

Mr. Right doesn’t always show up ‘at the right time’…. or what I should say is, the time that we think is right’.

More often than not, he shows up exactly when you were not planning on meeting him. And while in a movie it might seem pretty dang hilarious or ‘oh so sweet’ when Mr. Prince Charming shows up at the ‘wrong time’, it’s really not ‘funny’ in real life. It’s confusing. Suddenly, everything is upside down downside up! And everybody is waiting for you to make probably one of (if not ‘the’) biggest decision of your life and you just don’t know what to choose (especially if you’re like me and deciding what pair of shoes to buy is a major decision for you :P).

So yeah, I can understand your confusion and I can understand your ‘fear’, even. But let me tell you that I happen to know more than 3 girls who got married when they were 20 or less (19 & 18) and each of them wasn’t expecting it- each was still in university- but it worked out for them, Ma’sahAllah!

On the other hand, I also know one sister whose father, thinking that he had her best interest in mind, refused to let her meet any of the suitors who asked for her hand in marriage while she was still in university. Today, she is almost 30 years old and still not married. The unfortunate part though is that she confessed to me that she sometimes wishes she could have at least met those suitors…

Now, I’m not saying you should just throw yourself at any guy who comes or you won’t get married! Not at all! What I just mean is seriously CONSIDER these potential suitors. If you do find that one of these suitors really does appeal to you religiously, rationally, emotionally, and physically, then don’t let your age stand in the way. Our age is just a number- it doesn’t reflect (or it doesn’t’ always reflect one’s maturity or wisdom level, at all.)

Instead, what I think you should do is ask yourself this question:

If this man were to come five* (or how ever many years you want) later, what would I say? And then you need to ask yourself: Well, what if he doesn’t? What if he doesn’t come back? What if it’s now or never?

You also need to make lots of dua, and pray istikhara. When you pray istikharah you agree to let Allah decide what is best for you….and of course He always chooses what is best for you at this moment, for your future and your afterlife! (When you say the dua, Allah Subhanoo wa’ Tala will either make things easier for you, showing you that yes, this guy is good for you, or make it ‘really hard’, proving to you that this person isn’t really good for you.)

Of course, I do know that it can be really nerve wracking and very frightening to suddenly think of yourself with a new role (that of a wife) but just because something is a little hard to think about, doesn’t mean you should just completely turn away from it without thinking.

Yes, with marriage comes great responsibility (so I can understand your concern about needing to be 'mature and all'), but don't forget the other beautiful aspect to marriage. Love within the realms of marriage is beautiful, especially when both partners are well informed of Islam. When you read about what the Prophet (sallah Allah alayhee wa salam) used to do with his wives (May Allah be pleased with them)- like the way he used to always turn the cup to drink from the exact place Aisha drank from/ the way he raced her/ how he used to help around the house, or the way he joked with his wives- it makes you realize that marriage can be wonderful (spoken like a true 'single' girl, right :P Hahah!).

However, if you’re convinced that you’re not ready for marriage and you’re really sure you need more time to grow religiously/ emotionally/etc., then be honest with these suitors. We don’t date in Islam so having a relationship is not acceptable. If these suitors are really that great what you can do instead is tell them that you need time. Are they willing to wait a bit?

Well, hope my answer could help you a bit. InshaAllah, I will be keeping you in my adeya. inshaAllah things will be easier for you and you will be able to sleep. Feel free to write again and tell us any updates or anything.

Your sis and aunty,

P.S. sisters, if you've been through something similar/ whatever, please do share.

6 wonderful sprinkely thoughts:

Rukhpar Mor October 26, 2010 at 7:23 PM  

I think it's great advice. Thanks for sharing=)
I don't have anything to add since no suitor (i.e. a nice brother) has ever asked my parents, but I know that I was interested in this brother and even told my mom, but she didn't do anything. He's happily married now. So, I guess it's good for him. I'm just turned off by marriage.

Shireen Baig October 27, 2010 at 5:02 AM  

Its so funny you know :P i mean here i am SO desperate to get married but there's no good guy :P and here you are with 3 OPTIONS!

Okay, well i am not that desperate but i am seriously considering .... i am 20 btw..

My mother got marrried when she turned 18.. my sister got married when she was almost 18..(although she had alot of issues cuz it was a 'love' marriage, after her experience i realized that mostly it is a suitor thats selected by your parents who proves to be a good husband)

So yeah, he should be religious thats REALLY important, if that falls in place rest everything else will follow. Well, i want a religious guy too :| that REALLY shocked my parents my dad kept sayin' if i wanted to marry a mutawwa and my mom..well she was like ''like a guy with BEARD??'' hehe so now i can only imagine what a blast i'll have when i would get married haha

DO isktikhara thats the BEST!!

simplyme October 30, 2010 at 11:52 PM  

wow dats a gread advice i was engaged to a guy of my choice bt later my famlly insisted on doin istekhara n it came no and very bad so i had to broke my engagement dat was hard bt Allah has someone else for me i guess actually a brohter proposed me on eid ul fitr (hehe hw romantic) i did istkharo n it came yes bt the thing is that he is from my ex's family so i am hesitating because of it plz auntie help me wat shoud i do?thanx

Little Auntie,  November 6, 2010 at 4:41 AM  

awww, Rukhpar Mor, he might have seemed like a very good brother and he might have been a good one, too, but just not 'good for you', you know what I mean? :)

Random, LOL, I am so thinking of joining halfourdeen as well, hehe!! <3 We're like you- wanting someone religious too :) May Allah grant us all good spouses :D'

Thank you so much for sharing that part about your sister!!

Simplyme- hmmmm, good question, but before I answer what I think, I have to ask what you mean by doing istikhara and it turning out 'no'? See, many people think that istikharah is like asking a sheikh/ or getting a dream/ or opening a page in the Qur'an and seeing what you land on....all of these are WRONG. Istikharah is just praying 2 rakahs and then making dua that Allah makes easy the thing if it is good for you. If it's made easy and everything is falling into place, than you should go with it....

So this time...I say, if the person's family didn't mind that you guys said 'no' and they let someone else propose to you, why let that stop you? Just pray and ask Allah to make it easier for you if it would be good for you to marry him....

Besides, if you say 'no' right away, that family is going to start to think that you always say 'no', lol....

Let us know how it goes :D

Unknown November 12, 2010 at 12:39 AM  

I got married at 20, and like you said he kinda popped up out of no-where, lol. I'm very thankful I was able to get married young though alhamdulilah. I feel if you wait until you're older (late 20s, 30s) you're expected to have kids right away or risk being infertile. If you marry younger, you can enjoy more time with your husband before kids without risking fertility issues. =) Just a thought, hehe.

simplyme November 21, 2010 at 4:30 AM  

little auntie, actually the istekara was made by a sheik he told if u marry him (my ex) u both will end up divorcin to tell the truth i think i still have feelings for him (my ex) n he also havnt forgotten me so now wat do u suggest me shud i do the istekharo myself or just let it go n forget him?

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