By Ehab Hassan

So you finally came to your senses. That girl or guy you've been talking to is not the best thing that's ever happened to you, and definitely not helping you advance or get closer to Allah. You know it's wrong, you want to get over it, you want to move on, but it's just so hard and no one understands you!

Insha'Allah, it's all going to be alright. I've heard it all before, especially working with youth. It may be the single most difficult sin to convince someone to leave. I knew a brother who left Islam for a girl, because when all else fails, this is the last arrow Shaytan throws at the believer because it works. And that's why we need real, practical ways to just get over it.

The fact that you're here and reading this is a step in the right direction. You may not think so now, but you WILL get over it. After all, Allah tells us:

“As for the one who is conscious of Allah, He prepares for him a way out. And He provides for him from sources that he could never imagine.” (Qur'an 65:2-3)

The Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) tells us in a hadith that Allah says: “When my servant comes to Me walking, I go to him running.” (Bukhari)

You're probably thinking that getting over a relationship can't be as easy as people make it sound. Especially since Shaytan spends his days and nights trying to make the forbidden so beloved to you. He convinces you that lust is love as he makes your heart skip a beat when you see that special person's name – in your email, on your phone, or on your Facebook account.

But believe me when I tell you that you're stronger than that. Move on, work on pleasing Allah, and you will have no regrets. But just to make things easy for you, here are 21 practical steps you can take to get over that haram relationship, divided up into seven categories:

Just Knock it Off

1. End the Relationship Cold Turkey

Enough with the games already. Stop dipping your toes in the water and jump in. If you think you're going to try to “downgrade” the relationship a little bit, then forget it. Someone asking for advice once said that he thought it would be a good idea that instead of hanging out as often they would just talk on the phone and meet for coffee every once in a while. It simply doesn't work. Stopping cold turkey is the first step. In fact, it's the only real step that you have to take. The rest of what I'm going to share is simply how to manage yourself after you take that step.

2. Don't Keep them Hanging On

This is not the time to make a deal. No putting thoughts in each others minds about “when the time is right”, or “let's revisit this if neither of us are married by the time we're 19.” They may try to do the same to you. Don't let it happen. This will make you both miserable, will make things harder, and will make it impossible to move on.

3. Cut the Cord

Delete all the emails, texts, Facebook messages, phone number, voice mails, and anything else you have that reminds you of that person. Avoid situations where you will run into them as much as possible. Avoid talking to them in general, and definitely not without someone else present. Don't try to find out what they're up to, and stop cyber-stalking them. So quit looking them up on Facebook, don't follow them on Twitter, and knock off whatever other sneaky ways you have to find out what's going on in their lives.

4. Tell Them it's Over… Like for Real

If you must have that last conversation to tell them you're moving on, then do it. Do it over email and keep it short, sweet, and not open ended by any interpretation. Don't leave things for them to respond to. End by telling them it's something you have to do for the sake of Allah. And ask them not to contact you. The sooner you do this the better. If you're in the early stages then it's much easier to stop. Relationships progress and before you know it, you could be in over your head, and it's not as easy to end it (though always doable).

Control Your Emotions

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5. Turn the Radio Off

This is not a debate about the permissibility of music. One thing that's for sure though is that music will spark certain emotions when you're most vulnerable. Every song will be about you two. Just lay off of it for a bit and give yourself some time off.

6. Stop Wondering

Don't keep wondering if they're thinking about you, and don't give them the opportunity to let you know that they are. Let other, more important things occupy your thoughts. Don't allocate an hour to stare at your ceiling before going to bed. Read a book instead. Assume they're doing fine without you, and hopefully they'll assume the same about you. Keep your dignity.

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7. Know They Were Never Right for You

If something starts off wrong it doesn't just become right with time. Realize that you never really loved them for the sake of Allah, no matter how much you thought you did or what MSA event you met them at. You need something that started on the right foundation.

[Updated] This should discourage anyone from starting something wrong.  However, if you're currently in an unislamic relationship, and marriage is right for you, then you can always repent and start anew on the right foundation —with the right intention for marriage and with the correct etiquette.
But make a decision now, and don't continue to build on the same foundation you started on.

Fill That Void

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8. Let it All Out

Talk to Allah and tell Him how you feel – in whatever language you know how. Cry to Him if you want to. Do whatever you can to get closer to Him. So if you weren't already praying tahhajud every night, take some baby steps. Allah has an open door policy.

9. Do What You Love

Do things that you actually enjoy doing. Yes, it's critical to do acts of worship, but also do things that you really love to do. Play sports, go hiking, head to the driving range, watch a movie. Fill your time with things that will engage and fulfill you – and keep your mind from being where it doesn't need to be.

Rekindle Your Relationship with Allah

10. Quit Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places

Let your love of Allah fill your heart. There is a fulfillment that you will never get from people that only the Most Merciful can fulfill. Know that He has always taken care of you when you had nowhere else to turn to. Ask for His forgiveness and put your trust in Him. He will not neglect you. And don't be afraid to be alone sometimes… just you and your Creator.

pray

11. Make du'a' for Something Better

You know the story of Umm Salamah whose amazing sahabi husband passed away, she made du'a' for something better and ended up marrying the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him). So know that Allah is the best of planners. And ask that He grant you someone who will bring you closer to Him and make you happy. Just live your life so that you deserve it. After the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) died, Ibn Abbas [ra] was said to increase in fasting and prayer. When others asked him why, he said

“I want to get married, and I read the verse: 'Pure women are for the pure men, and pure men are for the pure women.'” (Qur'an 24:26)

 Quran 24:26

12. Follow Up with a Good Deed

“Verily the good deeds erase evil deeds.” (Qur'an 11:114)

Quran 11:114

 

So you feel like you slipped and messed up. Follow up with something good. Give charity. Pray at night while others are sleeping. Feed the hungry. Fast some extra days. Just be thankful that Allah saved you from something that could have gotten worse. He is the Most Forgiving, the Most Merciful.

Let's be Rational

13. Stop Dreaming about Marriage

People spend way too much of their youth thinking about marriage. It's even a phenomenon with religious youth – actually, maybe even more so with them since they'd rather think of marriage than something haram. If you're not ready, you're not ready. Allah says:

“Let them who find not the means for marriage remain chaste until Allah gives them means by His grace.” (Qur'an 24:33)

Dream big about other things and accomplish something real. Your whole life, and especially your youth, is not about you being attached to someone else. You're an individual. As the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) said: “take advantage of your youth before your old age. (Reported by Al-Hakim)

14. Take Time to Evaluate

Evaluate what really makes sense in your life with regards to marriage. Is it really the right time for you? If not, is that time soon? Are there things you have to accomplish before you're ready? Get the advice of good, righteous, and knowledgeable people to help evaluate. Use this time to develop your relationship with your parents. Get their take on things as well and talk to them about how you feel. You'll get great insight and build a stronger relationship with them.

15. Know that This Too Shall Pass

One of my teachers once told me that all things in life start small and grow, except for the calamity, which starts big and only becomes smaller. You'll get over this with time. You'll look back and wonder what your problem was and why it was such a big deal at the time. And know that leaving what is haram will only make your marriage stronger when you do find the right one by the grace of Allah.

Be a Better You

 

16. Rediscover Yourself

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Discover your talents. Get into things that you've always wanted to try but didn't. Develop your skills in something you enjoy. Take time to do things that will be tough to do once you get married and have less time for yourself.

17. Do Things to Feel Good About Yourself

Take care of yourself in these tough times – your mind, body, and soul. Read a book, study hard for your classes, eat healthy, get exercise, drink a lot of water, dress nicely, listen and read more Qur'an, listen to a good lecture, volunteer at an Islamic function… basically, anything and everything that normally makes you feel like you've accomplished something good. Be kind to yourself.

18. Learn About True Love

Learn about what halal love really is. And yes, it exists. It's not what you think and it's not how Hollywood portrays it. Real, halal love is the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) crying when he saw the necklace of Khadijah raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her) long after her death. It's when she supported him when the whole world turned its back on him. It's wanting your spouse to do good so you can spend eternity in paradise together. It's not meeting a girl at a party and killing yourself because you can't be with her (sorry Shakespeare). Learn what true love really means and you'll get over any haram relationship real quick.

Get Support from Others

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19. Get a Role Model

Hang out with and talk to respectable young, religious, happily married people. Get their advice and use them as an example for yourself in your life. They will help put things in perspective for you. Ask about their stories of how they got married. Ask them for advice and learn from them.

20. Lean on Your Friends

That's what friends are for. Now you finally have an opportunity to develop stronger bonds with your brothers and sisters (brothers with brothers and sisters with sisters of course, or you missed the whole point of the article). It will be much easier now to spend time with them and make each other better people. You won't always have this luxury.

21. Be Among the Righteous

Be with people who you know would not want you to be in that haram relationship. The friend who tells you you're a fool for cutting things off is the one you want to avoid for a while. If one or more of your righteous friends knew about the haram relationship you were in, then talk to them and let them know you're moving on. It's a good way to encourage yourself, and insha'Allah they will encourage you. If they didn't know about it, no need to make confessions. Just enjoy your time with them because it will make you a better person.

I ask that Allah make us all strong. That He strengthens the marriages of those in our ummah, and keep us away from all that is displeasing to Him.

 

Ehab Hassan is a Muslim youth activist and Islamic worker.  He has served on several councils and boards of various Islamic organizations while concentrating much of his efforts in youth work over the past 15 years.  He strives to motivate and connect with Muslim youth and families by delivering sermons, leading discussions, and organizing creative community activities.  His passions lie in Islamic manners, family development, and sharing heart-softening stories, as he tries to get the world to feel something – because people can be so numb sometimes.  By day, Ehab is a Mechanical Engineer, and by night he is a family man trying to maintain his status as the world's best dad.  Ehab resides in Maryland with his wife and three young kids.  Follow him on Twitter @ehababuayah.

70 Responses

  1. Razan

    #9, 10, and 20 are cruuuuucial!!! You NEED to have a life outside of this person. A bajillion people will sigh and tell you ‘oh but you’re so cute together’ – take it from someone who wasn’t even in a relationship (just a crush), going cold turkey in one way or another is the way to go. Give them a nice conversation, don’t be abrupt – but close things off, and don’t open them up in that direction again.

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  2. Ali

    Mashallah amazing Article

    I believe there are two types of love

    Drunk Love and Sober Love. these are terms that I have made up.

    Drunk love is a volatile type of love with very high ups and very low downs. Its unstable. Your self worth, sanity and mood is at the mercy of the other person. Or how they treat you.

    Your happiness is dependent on the other person.

    You need and crave their attention and approval. The thoughts of that person consume your every waking moment. Your mind is totally focused on them. Allah does not even enter into your thoughts, much less into your heart.

    Its a very unhealthy type of love. People in drunk love make very drastic choices and lose themselves. This type of love is essentially strong chemical reactions happening in your entire body. in this type of love, eventually it becomes all about power struggles and manipulate the other person and taking advantage of their weakness. It becomes about owning and possessing them.

    You feel sad, hurt and jealous if they spend time with their friends and not with you. You want, need and crave their attention. Without it you feel less as a person. You feel less than whole.

    Its a love that is based on false attachments and so its doomed to fail and while you are in it you are miserable to your core.

    Sober love is a love based on halal foundations. Which means you took the halal approach to meeting them and hopefully being married to them. Yasir Birjas says that if you are talking to someone for marriage and they say their parents don’t know that they are talking to you for marriage, its a major red flag and you should step away immediately, until they talk to their parents first. Because it means they are too scared or not serious enough about marriage with you.

    Sober love based on true love, which means you genuinely care for that persons well being and you want the best for them, even if it means you dont get to be with them.

    You want them, but you dont NEED then. Because every-time you NEED someone, you give off desperate vibes and you push people away because you come across as Needy.

    In sober love, your main focus is Allah and your spouse is there to remind you more of Allah and to help get you closer to Allah

    In sober love you are calm and collected. You are in control of your emotions and you dont make crazy decisions because of the other person.

    Sober love is the complete opposite of drunk love. Your happiness and mood is in your control (by Allah’s Will) and you make decisions based on logic and not blind emotion. You think clearly.

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      • Hyde

        All my sarcastic and witty remarks and comments do not play here; please ask the writer if he could contact me

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      • Ali

        @Hyde

        Are you ok bro?

        If there is something I can do to help please dont hesitate to ask

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      • fazal

        Hyde Brother contact me & I will tell you about me, I was years ago in the same situation as you,but Allah has put me on the right path but I had to make the 1st move. I will try to help you come off this disease

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      • Mahmud

        Hyde, are you the same fellow who commented on Asharis Assemble?(strange place to say the least)

        If so, I don’t think I am too surprised. Please do not sound so strange and return to the Hyde I used to kind of know and love. Instability is never a good thing.

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    • Sabeen

      Mashallah Brother Ali,
      Wonderful explanation.May Allah grant us Halal Sober love.Ameen :)

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    • Leon_Isaac

      I read this comment and I really liked what you said Mr Ali. However there are a few things I have queries on since I, myself am going through a rough patch. If one were to start the relationship on the basis that he does want to end up with her, marriage being a matter of a few years, and if she were to leave me because she felt it was not Halal whereas my perception and ultimate goal of starting the relationship was Halal, how is that right? I am happy for her and content that she is happy on the path that she has chosen but the article forgets to mention what is going through the other half of this relationship. If one were to perceive that a relationship is not Halal then she should not go into it in the first place, if that were not the case then I do not believe ending it would be wise particularly for the other person. Asking the other person to simply gain the same knowledge is better, breaking things off like that could only lead the other person to more pain, how is that justified? I am sure Allah would not want us to hurt people who do love us would Allah now?
      I take pride in saying that I do believe in Allah and I know He will do what is best for everyone who are good people, but when faced with such circumstances, what am I supposed to do? I try to pray and alleviate the pain but all my heart is filled with is angst and hatred for myself as I perceive myself as a bad person now, someone incapable of being loved and I don’t know why. There are instances when one has been able to endure and stay with a horrible person simply because she loves him and yet she can not stay with one who treats her like his to-be wife, has initiated the marriage talks with her parents and always treats her with love and care and is a practicing Muslim. How is one supposed to have faith in the fact that Allah can and will lead him to a happy ending if he stays a good person just like he is when she had to turn to Allah for salvation when he came but not when she had a horrible person with her?

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      • Single Samosa

        Leon, there is no such thing as a “happy ending”. Life is full of hurts and disappointments. It is very self-reassuring to say that if you are a good person, things will work out and you will get what you want. More often than not, life does not work out that way. Eventually your inner pain will subside and you will move on.

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  3. Kirana

    As someone who has had to do this difficult thing, and came out the other end, I can vouch that all these points are true and important. You cannot love truly until you are a whole person yourself. And once you understand this and grow up to be an individual complete person, automatically you will be a better partner to another, and no longer become needy for another incomplete person. But the beginning is really tough. Allah will help you through that bit, and then trust me, it just somehow gets easier as you get stronger and more used to relying on Allah.

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  4. tawfiq

    Can you elaborate on what you would consider a haram relationship?

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  5. ZAI

    Agree w/ most of the points in the article.
    Just disagree with this part:

    “If something starts off wrong it doesn’t just become right with time.”

    Not true. Plenty of Muslims have started off relationships that were wrong, but
    have ended up in very happy marriages. To deny this and make it seem as though
    only the totally arranged marriages lead to happiness is to deny reality for the sake
    of ideology.

    Many Muslims found someone in a less than ideal or even haraam way, but later on the spouses
    both become more practicing and are in happy marriages regardless…Divorce and
    unhappiness rate is about equal for both “arranged” and so-called “love” marriages.
    Further, many non-Muslims have converted upon marriage to a Muslim, after a
    relationship that didn’t start off halaal.

    I’m not saying we should encourage the haraam here.
    Just saying we shouldn’t make overreaching judgements. It just
    denigrates people and we should never do that about people’s pasts…it drives
    them away from the faith or prevents them from returning to it. I realize part
    of the intent is to promote halaal “arranged” marriages, but this ain’t the way
    to do it. Aside from insult to the people who didn’t do it that way themselves
    feeling their marriage is being judged as never right…even after time…any kid
    can see plenty of the non-arranged marriages are very, very, happy and successful
    and therefore will see through the lie and that’ll make them start questioning
    religious dictates….

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    • Bistrodrummer

      This article didn’t say anything about arranged marriages.

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      • ZAI

        ““If something starts off wrong it doesn’t just become right with time.”

        Implication is that only marriages that start out the halaal way, “arranged”, are ever right.

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      • therealshard

        another halaal way, in my humble opinion, would be going straight to the person’s parents instead on going on dates with them. or asking your mom/dad to talk to her/him. and then if both families are okay, we are pleased with their religion, accept their looks, vice versa then ok marriage time!

        and Allaah knows best

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  6. Ehab Hassan

    JazakAllahu khairun for your thoughts ZAI. The line that you’re talking about is actually a saying and understanding of the scholars and is not my own. Some scholars use it as a basis for fiqhi rulings. The saying is:

    مابني علي باطل فهو باطل

    Whatever is founded on falsehood is falsehood (i.e. It doesn’t become justified after that).

    And Allah knows best.

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    • ZAI

      I agree brother that it cannot be justified as ideal or halaal.
      I’m just saying we shouldn’t go the extra mile and say it cannot be RECTIFIED in
      the future or that it cannot lead to happy marriages wherein couple repents for
      the past, but is “right” in the present and future.

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  7. Ehab Hassan

    And I am definitely not an advocate of arranged marriages by any stretch of the imagination. I’m not sure how/if I gave that impression. There are plenty of outlets for people to get to know each other in a wholesome environment (talk, hang out, get to know each other, ask questions, and see if they click). I strongly believe that there needs to be chemistry before marriage. The right environment for that must be observed – and only when the intention is purely for marriage.

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    • ZAI

      “The right environment for that must be observed – and only when the intention is purely for marriage.”

      Yes Brother, I agree…all of that would fall under halaal.
      I’m just saying, even people that do it in a haraam way that goes beyond
      even that great latitude…like straight out Western dating…They too
      can have happy marriages and later in life they can also become
      more religious and repent for the past.

      Perhaps maxin of haraam foundations is not so black and white in this case.
      Beyond two Muslims, as said earlier…a non-Muslim could’ve been brought
      into Islam. Is a person saying shahadah ever a bad thing?

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      • Bistrodrummer

        I don’t believe the “ends justifying the means” is an Islamic principle, although I could be wrong. The author is focusing on the means and is arguing that the means should be halal. The end could turn out great, but that’s not going to change something that is haram into halal.

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      • ZAI

        Yes, you’re absolutely right!
        I’m not saying anything outside the halaal should be promoted or
        lauded…just that the “ends” are not always bad, therefore the maxim that what starts bad always ENDS bad is not the case. Many people repent and things turn out fine. So yes, don’t promote the haraam…but let’s stop at that instead of making prognostications or very generalized statements. This is a complex matter. Allah’s forgiveness and mercy are vast and plenty of 2nd chances in this religion…including in marriages that might not have started out halaal!

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  8. Hyde

    Tearfully I acknowledge all the points but will it can’t abide by them…love is love.

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    • Balooh

      Dear Hyde. Allah swt has blessed you with enough strength to overcome anything he puts in your way. There is nothing in our lives that Allah has not given us a solution for. Put your love into yourself and into your imaan, if it is to be, then Allah willing, nothing will stand in your way. Take the halal route or find the courage to let it go, Allah is sufficient for us, truly, may we be guided to remember it and truly believe it. Allowing ourselves to love in this way is nothing but self neglect and deluding ourselves. Our hearts, our families and above all our Rabb deserves more from us. May Allah keep us all on the path that leads to true contentment, there is only one true path to everlasting peace/happiness and that is keeping within the laws that have been set for us. The longer we engage in this, the more attached we become.

      May Allah help us all brothers and sisters, we all have the same nafs/desires when it comes to the opposite sex, it is incredibly easy to fall into the clutches of the shaytaan, who beautifies the haraam for us, the love which follows after a marriage will be much sweeter for us and don’t our spouses deserve from us to have unloved hearts, by the will of Allah our hearts are worth more than gold. May Allah save us and guide us indeed.

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      • Aly Balagamwala

        Dear Hyde

        Something has changed in your tone in the comments here. What’s up bro?

        Aly

        *Comment above is posted in a personal capacity and may not reflect the official views of MuslimMatters or its staff*

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  9. ADEL

    Interesting article. But im a little confused about what to do right now. You see, i started out (may Allah forgive me) being in a haram relationship entirely based on phone calls and text messages. But now this guy and I, we’re planning on getting our nikkah done soon because we realized what we’re doing is wrong. Should i stop talking to him, or focus on getting nikkahed to him ASAP? Will we be happy? Because even though our foundation was haram, our realization of late has made us better individuals. Keeping in mind that we must ask forgiveness from Allah first.

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    • ZAI

      ^
      ^
      ^
      ^
      Exactly the type of situation I was talking about!

      Get the Nikah done sister.
      If you’ve both decided you’re good for eachother and want to get married,
      then no reason to keep delaying it. I wish you success and hope it goes
      well for you both.

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      • Ehab Hassan

        JazakAllahu khaiun for the comments, and ZAI for showing me how a line from the article could come across. The comment about things not “just becoming right with time” means that it doesn’t just happen by itself with no effort. Allah always gives us opportunities to repent and hit the reset button, but it takes the right intention and effort on our part. The thing about something that doesn’t start on the right foundation not becoming right assumes that you are CONTINUING to build on that SAME foundation. The correct foundation should be based on the sincere intention for marriage and done with the correct manners and etiquette.

        If something starts wrong, by all means, stop it, repent, and try to do it right!

        ADEL, may Allah grant you what’s best and put blessings in what you do.

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  10. Rana

    I totally agree with Zai. My relationship did not begin in a halal way, but now we are both practicing Muslims, have been married for almost 10 years, and have two kids. Is our marriage not halal because of its bad foundations? Do you suggest that we get divorced? What should we do to make it halal? Is asking Allah for forgiveness enough? (Which I’ve done plenty of times.) I’m not advocating for haram relationships, but I do not believe that beginning in sin is a death sentence that will always leave someone in sin, otherwise, what would be the point of my shahadah?

    Otherwise, the article contains very good advice, not just for youth, but for all adults that may faulter and slip into temptation and sin.

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    • Aly Balagamwala

      This is very relevant as I know a lot of couples who may have started out the wrong way and somewhere down the road became practicing (or were practicing but just stumbled). Now they are happily married with kids.

      However, I did get this query once from a similar couple … how do we get over the guilt of our past sins. We have acknowledged that we were wrong, asked Allah for forgiveness, but still the remorse continues considering we can’t forget our past since it was OUR past and we are still US.

      This is a valid concern and may not be there for all couples but I am sure some element exists for such couples.

      Aly
      *Comment above is posted in a personal capacity and may not reflect the official views of MuslimMatters or its staff*

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  11. Saeglopur

    Not really too different to Cosmo advice to ‘get over your man’, except where they would tell me to go out with my girlfriends, you suggest talking to God. (Which is good advice!)

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  12. How long?!

    As Salamu Alaikum,

    For those who have been through such a situation, or dealt with those who have, can you let us know how long before we get over a person?

    Jazak Allahu Khayran

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    • ZAI

      That is different from person to person. You won’t get a uniform answer
      Very generally though, if it was a close attachment…can expect for it to
      take a few months at least. Again, other factors like your personality, temperment,
      whether you successfully concentrate on other matters, have a good support
      structure of friends, family and colleagues will all play a role. Very generally,
      a few months atleast if it was a close attachment.

      Personally, it took me about a 6 months or so…emotionally.
      There might be some negative baggage that stays with you for good though.
      I was rejected by an Arab girls parents…so I will N-E-V-E-R try for intermarriage
      again. Will stick to my own Afghan community where I feel secure at my good
      odds.

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      • Ali

        Dear Zai,

        I am non Arab.

        I had a similar experience. I dont know why I felt so hurt and rejected. I learnt that it was because of false attachments. Anytime you are falsely attached to anyone and anything other than Allah, its no good.

        Allah helped me realize that I was obsessed with the girl and overly attached. Allah broke my attachment from people and things.

        In my mind, I had to marry an Arab girl, because I thought that if my kids learnt Arabic, they would be able to read the Quran and be better muslims.

        This, of course is an absurd idea. Thats how blind I was.

        Anytime you get too attached to anything and anyone in this dunya, you are going to lose it. Thats how Allah teaches us.

        Be detached from this dunya. This dunya is like being in transit for 24 hours at an airport.

        And never say never, for you never know what Allah has in store for you. Dont look at nationalities and pray that you marry someone who is good for your akhira, deen and dunya.

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  13. Tawbah

    please make duaa for me to stay strong!!! inshallah i am in way and i am trying my best and i did all the steps you said … My situation is a bit hard and it involves a non muslim as well .. even if he was a muslim…. from now and on inshallah i will leave anything that upsets Allah and i will never get involved in such a thing. I will follow this article step by step inshallah. YARABBBB
    تركت هذا من اجلك يارب اريد هذه الكلمات ان تشهد لي يوم القيامه ربي اغفرلي وارحمني….الحمد لله …كتبت هذه حتي اتذكرها ولاارجع … لحرام ابدا
    Bismallah now I am starting my journey to Allah!!! Jazakom Allaho Khuraa
    The email used here is the one i used to use, and my purpose here is i want these words to be the last thing using this email …

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  14. Bleank Dallas

    I’ve never been in denial about the things I do wrong or the wrong things I do. And I’ve never been one to let my pride get in the way of accepting a good advice. Whilst it is most probably the case that she would be fine without you, what if it is the rare case that she won’t be. Not emotionally, religiously. This is my reality. I don’t have any real interests in the relationship not nearly as much as the individual anyway. And the individual, in my own opinion, was always within arm reach of embracing everything wrong and I’ve been the only thing (other than Allah ofcourse) standing between her and that world for three years. Now I’ve reasoned that if I leave Allah will continue to be there to keep her on the right path. But practically, its also the case that Allah wouldn’t come down physically. Perhaps he’s already doing that particulay job through me. I just don’t know if I’ll ever be happy if I walk away, taking the easy way out in my own opinion, choosing to perfect my life but basically throwing her to the wolves. Will I be happy 6months later if I get news that she’s completely stopped covering her hair and is now a party girl. This is just another excuse is probably what most people are thinking now but what if its not. I just can’t take the risk. I think I’d rather stay with her, fated to struggle to barely manage to do enough to get into paradise than to strike out on my own, making an easy way for myself towards Allah but setting her on her path towards a gentle slide down.
    It is still a very wonderful article though.

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    • Ali

      Dear Bleank Dallas,

      Dont fall into the trap of justifying our sins. She is playing the role of damsel in distress and you are attracted to that because you can be her savior. Perhaps you are both enabling each other

      What makes you think that if you leave, you would be “throwing her to the wolves”?

      That is your ego talking….making it seem that you are the only one who can “save” her.

      Dont let your concern for this girl, make you disobey Allah.

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      • Balooh

        Agree with you word for word! Too often we let our desires get the better of us.

        To brother Bleank Dallas. You are sincerely NOT the one to set her on the right path. Indeed you can guide her to the right path but only to a very certain extent, the road to righteousness is to be walked alone, the only ones who can support us are our families -non mehram cannot be of support, its like asking the devil to assist us in our good deeds, there’s no leeway between right and wrong on this occasion. Make dua for her and if you feel she really does need some assistance to stay on the right path, find her some support from an educated sister. There’s a good chance of you losing yourself (mentally and spiritually) if you continue with this.

        Hope I have not caused any offence.
        Balooh.

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  15. Single Samosa

    There is a huge gap in this article, it’s like the elephant in the room that religious people hate talking about. But I’m now in my early 40s and I’ve played by all the rules, and it’s time we DID start talking about it.
    I stated away from haram relationships. I did not make marriage/love/opposite sex the focus of my youth. So I concentrated on my studies, being obedient, finding a good job, making sure I did not transgress islamic boundaries. I was told that good Muslim girls allow their families to introduce them to eligible men when the time is right and to make dua until that time came. That time never came. My parents grew old, one health problem after another. I asked them point blank to help but they kept telling me to be patient, they would “ask around” but no one wanted to come forward.

    So I have no alternatives. None whatsoever. But in the meantime other Muslim girls found ways to interact with the opposite sex, have relationships, and get married — happily. Same with the boys. In fact, they would have non Muslim girlfriends, and when the time came fir their marriage they would get married with great fanfare.

    Immigration from a Muslim country to a non Muslim country is haram. There is nothing to justify it other than prosecution. But our patents insisted on it, knowing the options for marriage for their children, especially their daughters, was non-existent. When I ask religious people how to get married they think Allah SWT has bestowed the internet as a beautiful means of finding a spouse– because a good girl like me should be paying money to a website to sift through hundreds of charlatans who can barely speak English and don’t have citizenship. I am not a passport, sorry — nor will I ever accept immigration as a means of Muslim progress. Oh yeah, and Muslim girls over age 35 — soooo old, they MUST marry a nice 50-something because of course every girl dreams of being a young widow.

    When I was almost 40 I met a nice, kind loving individual who was not Muslim but who wanted to marry me. Of course I had to reject him. What do you think, I’m now going to find a nice, kind living Muslim and have children? Of course not. I gave up that chance precisely because of everything written in this article, and as usual I have been left without a partner, without children, lonely, etc. At the time, and for years afterward, I prayed my guts out at every waking moment. Umm Salimah — well she was my heroine! But here I am 4years later, no husband, no children, fending for myself — and Muslims do not give a s–t.

    That is a bitter pill to swallow. And I don’t know why you are not being frank with your readers and telling them that there are few options for Muslim women to get married where the parents are not social butterflies and have all sorts of connections. Other than the website matrimonial advertisements.

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    • Ali

      Dear Sister

      Wallahee I wish you what is best for your akhira, deen and dunya

      Its not too late. There are some good sites out there

      like http://www.halfourdeen,com

      They even have offline events

      http://www.halfourdeen.com/offline/

      and others sites exist too

      How about speaking to imams of local masjids. Some cities even arrange meetups for single Muslims

      Please don’t give up.

      Please don’t let your current situation turn you into a victim

      A change of attitude can go a long way to get you motivated to take action to get you closer to your goals

      I wish you success

      Not every guy online is looking for a passport….I know you have heard too many horror stories

      Even if a guy is looking to immigrate and leave behind their bad situation in their country, it doesnt mean they wont be loving and caring towards you

      And Allah knows best

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    • Balooh

      My heart goes out to you Single Samosa. May Allah give you patience and bless you with a good husband, who will be worth the wait and more importantly become the coolness of your eyes.

      There are a couple of duas that may be of help.

      “Rabbana hab lana min azwajina wa dhuriyyatina qurrata A’yunin waj’alna lil-muttaqina imama.”

      “Our Lord! grant us in our mates and offspring the joy of our eyes and make us patterns for those who guard against evil.” (25:74)

      “Rabbi inni lemaa anzalta elayya min khairin faqeer” (28: 24)

      “Oh Allah! You have made every living thing in pairs. The sincere, beautiful and pious pair that you have created for me, please give it to me”

      The latter is the dua of Hazrat Musa Alayhisalaam.

      We tend to forget, Allah swt loves us 7 times more than our blessed mothers. Have certainty and trust in what Allah has decreed for you will be best for you.

      Umar (radi Allahu anhu) said: “I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) say, ‘If you were to rely upon Allah with the reliance He is due, you would be given provision like the birds: They go out hungry in the morning and come back with full bellies in the evening.’” (Ibn Majah).

      We have such a short lifespan, in a few decades you and I will be both be gone from this world, may Allah not take us in an ungrateful state. Never give up hope sister. Allah ho akbar. Allah is the greatest Indeed!

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      • Balooh

        Also keep in mind the prayer of need, Salaatul Hajaat.

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      • Single Samosa

        Thank you for reminding me about dua and about the internet matchmaking websites. I am in my 40s, so I have been making these duas my entire life — it is not new information. Also, I have not “heard horror stories” about the online matchmaking — I have been on these sites for years, so I have experienced the unusual characters online first-hand.

        The question still remains — what can a muslim woman do on a practical level to find a husband. I think it is great that we can make dua. but that is a spiritual practice. Unless you can tell me some hard data that a woman in the west who makes dua WILL find a spouse, I can tell you that sitting in my house reading dua will not make a muslim husband magically appear on my front doorstep.

        I can only assume from your responses that I am right — Islam does not have resources (other than the Internet — which is NOT Islamic at all — and making dua) that allow a woman to find a husband. Basically, if she does not have family helping her, she is out of luck completely.

        I have asked this question over and over to religious people and their only answer is the internet and dua. I fail to see how an Arabic-speaking Imam who leads juma in the mosque can facilitate marriage — that has not happened in my city and it never will. The imams serve one purpose only which is to lead prayers.

        This then begs the question, given that I have asked religious people on how to find a husband, and they don’t give me any practical steps, and given that my family can’t help (even if they wanted to, my parents are way too old), am I permitted to pursue non-Islamic channels? I don’t see why not. Otherwise, I will be alone, trying to satisfy my needs by myself (and by “needs” I mean physical, financial, emotional, sexual, practical, health, labour, repairs to my house, dealing with auto mechanics, etc).

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      • Balooh

        Sister. Can I ask why you feel online muslim match making is such a bad idea? It can be done in an Islamic manner. I agree it is a rare thing and certainly majority of the people online are not very genuine but there are people who are genuine and serious about marriage who are stuck in the same situation. Perphaps its a case of being more persistent? I understand how frustrating it can be, but there are people you will meet and then realise how other people are not so different than yourself.

        Is there anyone in your family who can help? A close family friend? Do brothers and sisters in your community know you are looking? Around where I stay, there are people who offer help over the phone. Much like online, they take your details and offer numbers of suitable spouses.

        The thing about dua is its not magic nor is it advisable to assume I have made dua – it did not work – I will not try again. It’s all about patience and trust. I guess you are probably quite near the end of your tether and feel you are left but to feel that way. But Allah swt makes ways out of every situation for us.

        I am sorry I cannot offer more practical advice, I do hope someone comes along with a better solution than myself. May Allah help you find comfort and make life easy for you.

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  16. Single Samosa

    I just think that muslim girls are not cheap advertisements, nor should we be paying someone to help us find husbands.

    Online muslim matchmaking is a concept taken from the non-Islamic websites. I have been on the muslim websites for 8 years. LOTS of them — Shaadi, Muslimah, Single Muslim, Qiran, Isna, Halfyourdeen, etc. They are all the same. I have often wondered what is so Islamic about them. I am so tired of paying money all the time to these websites. I am not interested in marrying a boy who is 15 years younger than me who lives in a foreign country — these boys are so transparent, they just want immigration. I often can’t communicate in other languages either. Also, none of the website owners have vetted the men who subscribe –w hich leaves muslim women very very vulnerable. The entire concept of marriage in Islam is to provide protection to women. Why am I receiving emails from men who say things like “oooh Salam, I am so attracted to you ” and “oh your age don’t matter, bring me to your country” — it is really disgusting. So there is nothing Islamic about these sites.

    If you have had 8 years of experience on multiple websites and your experience has been different, then please let me know.

    There are no “telephone Islamic matchmakers’.

    The prohibition against dating in Islam is based on protection. It is not to make things more restrictive or impossible. So, when someone decides to help a woman get married, that person will be doing so by screening the bad apples and instead introducing the girl to men who are known to be decent and a good match. It is not a blind-eye procedure, like grocery shopping. So the telephone marketing is very unusual – give someone your name, phone #, age, education, and boom a compatible match is found! What kind of Islamic process is that?

    Most muslim girsl that I know are honourable and decent, myself included. Why would I want to pay money to someone, who will not sift through the bad apples for me but just send me “whoever”??? Girls who are chaste deserve far better than that.

    And no, prayers are not answered eventually. A woman’s ability to have a child is not unlimited. I have prayed my entire life for a husband and baby — obviously, now that I am 43, I can’t have a baby, so it is clear that that dua has not and will not be answered.

    Again, I am wondering why Muslims think that internet matchmaking for unmarried girls is an Islamic process. Is there a dignity to the process? Is there hadith that says it is perfectly halaal for an unmarried girl to pay someone to send pictures/profiles to her?

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    • Balooh

      I agree with you, without a doubt muslim girls are indeed not cheap advertisements at all. But I don’t necessarily think if you are on a matchmaking website you have been reduced to a ‘cheap advertisement’. You want a husband therefore you are taking the steps to find one? The way I see it.
      Also I do not think all websites charge, I am certain SingleMuslim do not charge for females. Even if they do, I do not think it should be considered a big deal as the society we live in, we are charged for everything these days, even death comes with a price. (The burial, etc).

      With all due respect, I wish you had not said that. Girls who are chaste deserve far better than that?! May Allah give goodness to ALL muslims, chaste or not, who are we to judge, good women are for good men, but we cannot judge who is good, Allah swt knows best.
      Sister, its the times we live in, we are unfortunately the products of broken societies. (Speaking for the majority). Generations ago, people would marry very close within communities and there were a lot more love between people. But everything has changed and we are forced to find partners in a not so ideal way.

      It can be done with dignity. Some people choose to initiate contact with men only through their brothers/fathers. I cannot see why it would not be halal if the lady was covered?

      Duas are all answered, either we receive what we wish for, we receive something better instead or we receive something better in the hereafter. Allah knows what is good for us. Honestly, if he keeps from us, it is a test and He is testing our patience and our subservience, We are but mere slaves, losing hope in dua is ungratefulness. If we are to stay single for a few more years, there must be some goodness in it.

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      • single samosa

        I wasn’t judging anyone – I was talking specifically about myself and other girls who have reached their 40s and remained chaste – we do not now want to be reduced to an advertisement on the internet. I disagree that paying money is harmless — it is not appropriate. I have bills to pay, I have to support myself, I can’t hand over money to websites, I just can’t.

        With due respect, I have tried on 8 websites for 8 years. I have received pictures of men with bare chests. I have been asked to send money to people so they can fly to my country and meet my parents. You are saying this is Islamic, whereas the police in my country are issuing media alerts to women using websites, warning them that predators abound. I have been on websites for years and years and despite your opinion, I speak from personal experience that they are not honourable. The day I received a picture of a nice muslim man in his underwear was the day I decided to stop.

        I feel, therefore, that I have made efforts in a circumstances that have challenged my very values. I never interacted with the opposite sex but since everyone said internet matchmaking websites were oh-so-Islamic, I gave it a good hard try for 8 years and at a huge financial cost to myself. I have even mentioned to my mother that perhaps the men in my family , if they are not going to help me, they can help with the financial cost of such matters, but they won’t do that.

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      • Balooh

        Appropriate and ideal it is not. But when there are not so many options then..?
        There are websites that offer services for free.
        I have to admit sadly, I have also been sent such filth! I have also received pictures of a man in his underwear on a matchmaking website. I blocked him straight away and thanked Allah for He saved me from someone terrible; always better to know what someone is truly like sooner rather than later.
        But on the other hand I do have to add I have met some true muslim gentlemen through matchmaking websites and who are respectful and will honour you.
        I am so sorry that you have such little help.. The men around you are not fulfilling their obligations.
        Really hoping someone comes along with better advice and helpful solutions.

        Will keep you in my duas, May Allah indeed be merciful.

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      • Single Samosa

        I think you have hit the nail on the head with your second sentence, “But when there are not so many options then..?”

        THAT was the point of my comment. Other than family doing some ardent networking for their adult daughter, a woman has no options. This article tells us to move on from haram relationships, focus on other things, etc, which is fine, but the reality is most of us crave a loving and intimate relationship and most women truly desire to have children. This article tells us what we are NOT supposed to do – it does not reassure us that as muslims living in non-muslim countries, we have many ways of finding a spouse.

        I have been asked this question repeatedly by my non-Muslim friends and colleagues. “How do you guys get married, find someone to settle down with?” And I really have no response. When I was in my 20s and early 30s, online matchmaking did not exist in those days. So, I used to just answer the question by saying that we get introduced to prospectives by our families. So then the question becomes, “Oh, so does YOUR family do that”….and the answer was usually no, or “rarely”, due to lack of resources, laziness, it was too much trouble, they were too old by the time I reached marriageable age, etc.

        So yes, I agree that muslim women have no options.

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      • Amel

        As-salamu Alaykum, Single Samosa,

        I can understand why you would want to avoid matrimonial sites. They may work for some people, but there are certain risks involved, especially for women.

        My question to you would be: What kind of community do you live in? Do you have the opportunity to socialize with other Muslims in your area? Do you have Muslim friends (women) whom you regularly see and interact with? Are you active at the local masjid or Islamic center?

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      • Single Samosa

        I live in a North American city. There are Muslims. But the girls I grew up with are married and moved on. I try to keep in touch via email and text but they are super absorbed in their family and socialize with other couples with children — basically, by the time I was 35, the contact dwindled, as they became absorbed in babies and I had to worry about supporting myself financially and also taking card of my old, sick parents (and still do). I think that is a by-product of cultural norms passed on from immigrant parents — non-Muslims are a bit more open to socializing with older singles, but I have to draw the line on that because they often drink socially. There is no islamic centre where I live nor was there an islamic centre when I was in my 20s and 30s. I think you are visualizing a large Muslim epic centre similar to what you will find in San Francisco, New York, etc — large US metropolitan cities where even 20 years ago youth were encouraged to meet and mingle. Here, the mosque is available for prayer times but women rarely go. But I’ve never heard of any older Muslim women getting married through a mosque. I know in the UK there are mosques that serve that function, but not here.

        I have asked many many imams and scholars about this issue and they have all unanimously agreed that there are no channels for Muslim women to get married outside of parents setting them up.

        My only option is to find a non-Muslim man, and hope he converts, but to do that I would have to have a conventional relationship with him which would involve pre-marital sex. That is not something that appeals to me, but living alone without anyone who cares about me or about my well-being is tough. I’ve done it for 43 years and can honestly say it does not get easier. You try to convince yourself that it is normal due to religion, but it gets harder to justify as time goes on.

        Long story short: attraction and desire to be with the opposite sex is normal. It is not “shaitan whispering in your ear”. If parents choose to immigrate to a non Muslim country then they must bend over backwards to ensure that we have opportunities to fulfill our own hopes, dreams and desires for a husband, intimacy and family.

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      • Razan

        Single Samosa – that’s really hard. :( I’m sorry to hear about your troubles. However I don’t think that a relationship with a non-Muslim is the answer – it would just give you more heartache in the long run, especially if you had to deal with living with a man who isn’t really convinced of the beliefs and lifestyle that you’ve obviously sacrificed so much for over your life.

        Please don’t give up. As impossible as it sounds, I have known other Muslim women in your position who DID get married. You should come to the forum jannah.org (I’m a member, it’s an Islamic forum) and ask for help, a lot of the women there are tough cookies who could help you out.

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  17. Balooh

    Salaam to the moderators. Can I ask, how do I edit my posts? I am rather new here and I am quite unsure how to..lol.

    Jazakallah :-)

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  18. Mrs. Hamid

    Salams dear sisters and brothers,
    Let me share my experience… i feel the foundation of every relationship is a test, including haram and halaal ones.

    I was in a haraam relationship few years ago… it was an emotionally abusive one with a kafir, yet i could not bring myself to give it up. I contemplated suicide many times but my fear of Allah kept me from doing so. It came to a point where, close to my father’s demise and my mum being seriously ill at the same time, the relationship got very sour as he was not understanding at all. (Alhamdulillah it was a good sign) because i went cold turkey, i decided im not going to deal with this anymore and instead devote my prayers to Allah and look after my parents. Alhamdulillah when i made up my mind to do so, all emotions for that person died almost instantly. I guess my Thakwa was renewed and i found hope again in Allah. Few weeks later my father passed away and it devastated me that i wanted to give up again. but Alhamdulillah, Allah is ever so merciful and understanding, he sent a man who renewed my faith in relationships and supported me through my mourning. He is my husband now and Alhamdulillah I cant imagine life before Allah opened my eyes. it was like an epiphany.

    The key is to prioritize who is more important, Allah or somebody else, Once you have passed His test and accepted that Islam is your path of life and commit to it, everything will fall into place.

    may Allah grant us guidance and Sabr for those who are seeking help from the Almighty. Allah may not provide with what you want, but will give you what you need. Allah knows best!

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    • Balooh

      Oh sister thank you for sharing your story. Its always heartwarming to hear about returning to faith :-). N agree with you completely -the key is to prioritize who is more important. Its a sign of self respect to realise your worth to your creator n that you deserve better than to indulge in haraam. It devalues us mentally,spiritually n in some cases physically being in a haraam relationship. May Allah guide us all and keep us steadfast. Allah swt knows best n will give us good,but we must be prepared to control our nafs :-)
      May Allah reward you for being patient n grant your dad a place in Jannah :-)

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  19. Adam

    I made a mistake. I wish I took a better approach but it was too late and she got engaged. Even though I saw this coming. It hurts a lot. And I wish I can easily move but I know this will take time for me. I am so scared of approaching my married friends about this. I am to scared they will not look at me the same agian. I am still a student. I am not ready for marriage yet I am still hurt. Sounds stupid but it just sucks that I let my self into this. This article did help me out but I feel so empty and lonely because I am scared to ask for anyone’s help. It is hard going at it alone.

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  20. Sarah

    Salaam I’m currently in a on off relationship, I love this person and want a future with him, but I’m not sure what he wants. When I try 2 address the topic he tries to put it off till later. My intebtikdf have always been to end up getting married to him, but what can I do, he’s leaving me hanging.. I need help I’m confused…

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    • Brother

      Waalakum Asalaam. Sister I was in the exact same position as you.

      I was in a haraam relationship 5 years ago (that seems like a long time ago but hear me out) and throughout the entire process I kept telling the sister to tell her parents and things used to always come up (even though they were legit things, they did come up which stopped the whole process moving forward), When families did finally meet I didn’t feel comfortable towards the end when halls were being booked as I felt that this showed me I wasn’t compatible with her and there were general signs that things shouldn’t go ahead.

      After I went cold turkey by trying to tell her that we were incompatible (again, I know, I should have known after 4 years of talking to her) I knew I had hurt her. That was not my intention. My intention, like yours, was to get married to her and that was clearly shown through the fact that I waited 4 and a half years and also met her family several times. What I am trying to say is that if he wanted to marry you he would get on with things. He would tell his parents, he would take charge and actually do something. The fact that he is not doing anything shows that he is not interested.

      I am not sure how long you know this person for but I am telling you now, it will be hard (it has been for me, extremely difficult) and it will only get better in time. I made my mistake which was to say no to her even though she wanted to get married to me. And now I’m not even sure if she has forgiven me. If she hasn’t then on Yawmal Qiyaama she may say I never forgave him and I want some of his good deeds and if I have no more good deeds left I will take some of her bad deeds. This is authentic and is in a hadeeth.

      My point is to get out of this relationship to avoid any circumstances where he can say that you did something and will not forgive you. I left the relationship, even though it was then becoming halaal through parents meeting etc, because it started off haraam. Even though we didn’t commit zina I am ashamed of the things we did. This was because this so called “infatuation” was there. So please do yourself a favour and don’t fall into this. You may say “Oh, but I won’t do any of that” and that’s what I said. And I had a strong resolve. Now I cry and it aches me, not because I didn’t marry her, but because of the heartbreak and pain I caused her and her parents.

      Save yourself from all this and go about it the proper halaal way. Go through parents. Either let your parents find someone with your criteria or ask friends if they know someone with your criteria and then give a number straight away to your mum to call his mum. I’m telling you now I don’t want anyone to go through what I am going through. It’s emotional torture. But if you leave something for the sake of Allah, Allah will give you something greater. The only thing I am worried about is that she hasn’t forgiven me and that scares me.

      “Whoever has wronged his brother with regard to his honour or something, let him ask him for forgiveness before the time when there will be neither dinar nor dirham, and if he has any good deeds it will be taken from him in proportion to the wrong he did, and if he does not have any good deeds (hasanaat), some of the other person’s evil deeds (sayi’aat) will be taken and given to him to bear.” (Reported by al-Bukhaari, 2296).

      I hope this has helped you in some way and I hope, insha’Allah, you make the right decision.

      P.S: It may seem difficult and at times impossible but you have to take that first step and know that when you do it won’t be easy and you have to stay strong. If you are not strong you will go back to it again with him. Throughout the whole thing stay strong and explain to him why and then leave it.

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