Numero 1?

>> Sunday, March 11, 2012

Salam Alakum! I am 17 and I might seem young but I think I've fallen in love with my older cousin. I really love him for his qualities and great personality. We talked to each other before and at first, I didn't have feelings for him but over the past few years I think I may have fallen in love with him and I do want to marry him! I spend the whole day thinking about him, every night thinking about him, dreaming about him. It's always about him now!
The thing is that I don't think and believe that he might love me back. I think it might be low self esteem but I honestly doubt he would ever love me. And because of this, I sort of turned him into someone I improve/change myself for. I don't know if this is idolatry. Whenever I do something, I always ask myself, "Would he approve me doing this?" If he would, I would do it. If he didn't, I wouldn't do it. I feel so stressed now but this has put a good change on me because I'm doing the right things now and being a better person for him.
I am trying to be the perfect girl for him but it is just so hard and stressful being perfect only for him!
What should I do? Is this what I should be doing? How can I possibly stop thinking about him? I just really want him to love me back.
- Trying to be Perfect

Wa'alykum as salam wa rahmatullah wa barkatoo,
Dearest Trying to Be Perfect,

It's really really admirable to see you sit back and reflect on yourself. You're in love...but something doesn't seem right to you. Rather than ignoring it, you chose to confront it and see if there could be something with your love. That takes courage and I'm really proud of you :)

The truth though, sweet heart, is we've said it before....Love is something sacred in Islam but it is meant to be only in the institution of marriage. Remember how we said earlier that Islam forbids relationships outside of marriage and that it commands women and men to guard their modesty, lower their gazes, and not be left alone with non-mahrams. You might say "but he's my cousin". He's still a non-mahram to you. Talking to your cousin privately whether it is on the telephone or the computer is actually not okay, Islamically.

I know you said that you doubt he loves you back. Darling, you are someone worthy of being loved and never ever believe that you are less than any other person...but if you want a relationship, it should be done appropriately. Your parents/ wali should be involved and things should be out in the open and done according to what Allah has commanded. AGAIN, this is ONLY to PROTECT YOU. Instead of giving your heart to someone who is not even interested in a future with you, you set the boundaries right from the beginning....

As for your specific question....

I'm pretty sure that it's normal to want to please one's spouse/ fiance/ but we do have to be careful that we do not make any person or even object the center of our lives or the reason behind our existence.

It's exactly for the reason that you said. We have to be careful that we do not reach the stage of idolatry or that we do not set up equals to God…

This is because our whole creed, tawhid is actually based on "negation" of false gods/ false object of worship. "La ilah ila Allah".
We state that there is only One in His Godship and One and Unique in His Actions and Names and Attributes. Nothing is like Him and nothing is deserving of worship except Him. Nothing should be put in His place, nothing should be loved as equally as He is.

The Quran says:

And [yet], among the people are those who take other than Allah as equals [to Him]. They love them as they [should] love Allah. But those who believe are stronger in love for Allah. And if only they who have wronged would consider [that] when they see the punishment, [they will be certain] that all power belongs to Allah and that Allah is severe in punishment. (2:165)
Say, [O Muhammad], "If your fathers, your sons, your brothers, your wives, your relatives, wealth which you have obtained, commerce wherein you fear decline, and dwellings with which you are pleased are more beloved to you than Allah and His Messenger and jihad in His cause, then wait until Allah executes His command. And Allah does not guide the defiantly disobedient people."(9:24)

To evaluate your love, try asking yourself these basic questions:

  • Does your love for him exceed your love and remembrance of Allah?
  • Are you engaging in haram?
  • If he told you to stay up and call him at 2:00 a.m. would you do it, even if you knew that meant that you would miss fajr (etc.)?
  • Are you so attached to him that you don’t want to die for Allah’s sake?
  • Do you believe he is the source of happiness? Perfection?
  • Would you rather die if something were to happen to him?

If the answer is "yes", then there is something wrong, here.

Don’t worry, though. We can fix this.

You have to remind yourself of 2 very simple words that we say a lot in our prayers.

Allahu Akbar.

He is Greater.

He is Greater than you and me.

Sleep does not take Him nor slumber or fatigue. Whatever time of the day, He welcomes you. HE is always ready for his slave to turn back to Him. He is the Exalted.
He knows our darkest secrets and chooses to conceal us. He protects us from harm, and tests us to purify us.
He is Supreme, All Merciful, Clement, Forgiving. He controls your heart and the hearts of those around you. Perfection is His Attribute alone.
Not a word is uttered that He does not Hear it. Not a problem occurs, that He cannot solve.
Not a thing or person in this world, that He is not Greater.
He is Greater than ALL.

The Quran tells us:
Lord of the heavens and the earth and whatever is between them - so worship Him and have patience for His worship. Do you know of any similarity to Him?" (19: 65)

There is nothing like Him.

No matter how “happy” we feel with other things, nothing can ever rival Him.

Not a boyfriend/ money/ fashion- none of these things will ever be able to fully satisfy us. Because everything around us is like is fragile..and in need.

It is Allah alone that is Powerful, All Mighty, and Independent (Not in need)

HE should be the center of our lives.
Everything/ and everyone else will fail/disappoint you some time. Everything else will fade over time.

Everyone upon the earth will perish, (26) And there will remain the Face of your Lord, Owner of Majesty and Honor. (27) So which of the favors of your Lord would you deny? (28 (Surat Al Rahman)

Always remind yourself:
What can your cousin do for you? Does he provide you the oxygen you breathe? IF you asked him for another minute to live, could he grant it to you? If something were to happen to someone you dearly care about (say your parents), would you turn to your cousin to help you or Allah to pull you through?

When you start to feel like you're forgetting Allah and thinking only of this person, remind yourself that Allah alone is your Savoir.

And remember what we said in an earlier facebook status:
 Here on earth.... everyone has their own flaws, moods, quirks, and baggage. If you’re waiting for someone perfect to 'rescue you', someone who’s going to know what to say/ do/ act all of the time, then you’re up for disappointment. No 'man'/ 'person' has the solution to everything. No person will be able to fix your life for you.
The only One capable of that is Allah. Through out all of your life, HE has been right there, on your side, guiding you and protecting you....

When My servants ask thee concerning Me, I am indeed close (to them): I listen to the prayer of every suppliant when he calleth on Me: Let them also, with a will, Listen to My call, and believe in Me: That they may walk in the right way. (2:186)

IF you are finding it hard to swallow after this post, never fear. We talked before in an earlier post (and a very very similar question, hehe) about how to nurture one's love for Allah and how to increase it.

Remember, hun, to make Him number 1, we have to refrain from all that He has forbidden and do all that He has commanded. We bow down to Allah, alone =)

Hope this helps, sweetie..

With all our love,

11 wonderful sprinkely thoughts:

Anonymous,  March 11, 2012 at 5:18 PM  

Sister Yasmin Mogahed has an amazing lecture about this topic. It's definitely helped me refocus my goals. I have pasted the link below. Inshallah, it will help.

New Wife March 11, 2012 at 10:57 PM  

good advice mashaAllah as usual.

This is a scary thing to consider because it can really have an effect on your akhira. Like if you are wearing hijab for him and not for Allah will you get the benefit of wearing it? It is like those people who do hijrah for the sake of marriage, they don't get the reward of someone who does hijrah for Islam.

Anonymous,  March 12, 2012 at 12:22 AM  

When I was 16, I was madly in love with an elder cousin of mine. So much so that my entire existence revolved around my computer because he was far away, from breakfast to lunch to dinner to midnight chats. I'd hate the world if there was an electricity breakdown. Curse it with all my heart.

There was nothing more dearer than him. When he had to come back to my country , I was beyond excited. I rarely had a chance to meet him alone, so when I did I was so happy but there was this stinging feeling that it was not 'right' and honestly I wasn't even a practising muslim back then. So because of the feeling I tried to push myself away a little bit, just to see if he comes back, and in that meanwhile I got to know something about his character that I didn't approve of and he tried to get back later and as hard as it was I had to end it. It was almost a year or so in duration. So, what's my point of writing this super long comment to you?

1.In reality, now that cousin is married. It killed me when he got married but i knew i did the right thing.

2.If you are not sure that he loves you don't move forward because he is family and he will stay in your life and the encounters will just make you feel awkward.

3.You can get over him if you want and if you don't then involve your wali like auntie mentioned

4. You are young, few years down the line this will seem like a small thing that happened in your life and I speak from experience, sis.

5. I feel sometimes we feel so unloved and uncared for that we love any source we get the attention from.This may not be true for you but for people like me it is. So you just need to make yourself aware thatt there's this awesome Allah swt who gives you massive love and attention but are you acknowledging it? or are you busy with the other human and imperfect love?

I am not quite sure If I got the point across,but i wrote all that i wrote because I am concerned=)

Ps. Don't do anything in life except for Allah's sake because some people will have huge mountains of good deeds on the day of judgment but they will be scattered into dust because they werent done for the sake of allah.

Trying to be Perfect,  March 12, 2012 at 2:42 PM  

Thank you so much for this lovely advice! :D I feel so much stronger because I know that while my cousin might not be there for me all the time, Allah will ALWAYS be there no matter what. I actually thought about this and it makes sense to put Allah first. After all, Allah will never betray you and He will ALWAYS listen to you!

I am an attention seeker and I always feel like I need to seek attention. It broke my heart knowing that Allah had always been there for me...

...but I hadn't seeked His attention ever before. But now, I will do everything for the sake of Allah and leave my cousin out of my life. I feel so terrible now because I feel like I took part in idolatry which is an unforgivable sin! Will I be forgiven?

I'm thankful that I listened to my heart because in my heart, I had known that there was something terribly wrong with my love for my cousin!

Anonymous,  March 12, 2012 at 11:02 PM  

Dear Trying to be perfect
I am the girl from the above post, Allah swt loves you 70 times more than your mother ever would, do you think if you go sincerely to him with a heart full of remorse in the hope that he forgives you along with the resolution to not return to a sin again, do you think he won't forgive you?

Anonymous,  March 12, 2012 at 11:03 PM  

I am the girl from the comment above yours*

Anonymous,  March 13, 2012 at 9:16 AM  

Trying to be Perfect:

You should prolly ask your local scholars about the question you posed in your comment. :)

Anonymous,  March 13, 2012 at 6:32 PM  

MashaAllah sis. I am feeling great for you. May Allah help you to be more strong and do all act of worship only for Him, alone. Ameen. :)

Little Auntie March 16, 2012 at 11:57 AM  

Sis, I got this for you:

Just turn back to Allah now :)

You know, a lot of us make that mistake. We seek attention from others...and don't realize that Allah is right there for us. Alhamdillah, now you've come to that realization.

Jazakun Allah khair sisters for your input =)

Zarina Hassem March 16, 2012 at 12:57 PM  

You have been nominated for “The Tribute Award”. To find out more check out:

Anonymous,  April 22, 2012 at 12:46 PM  

salam sis..just wanted to say i really felt that comment. other than the marriage part i can relate to the rest too.

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