Many times, across different types of relationships, we face some turmoil and challenges that may bring about animosity, chaos and intense emotions. One major cause of most relationship problems is communication. However, there’s one other issue that is critical in relationships yet remains rarely identified; our attachment styles.

Attachment is the emotional bond between an infant and parent/guardian and it is through this bond that the infant gets their primary needs met. According to renowned psychiatrist John Bowlby’s attachment theory, the relationships with our primary caregivers during our earliest years have a major and long-lasting impact on our social and intimate relationships, including connections made at workplaces. How we bonded with our parents and guardians sets the stage for how we perceive and build all our relationships thereafter.

There are four attachment styles, the last three are considered insecure:

1. Secure attachment

2. Anxious Preoccupied attachment

3. Dismissive Avoidant attachment

4. Fearful Avoidant attachment

It should be noted that parents don’t necessarily or intentionally choose these attachment styles. Most of the time, they’re unaware and it is just automatic behavioural patterns passed from one generation to another .i.e. an anxiously attached parent might have an anxiously attached child due to unhealed generational trauma and they raise their kids the same way they were. Nonetheless, other factors might also affect which attachment style a child adopts as they grow up, such as trauma, life experiences, environment, or the close relationships they have with others.

1. Anxious Preoccupied (High anxiety, Low avoidance): Also known as anxious ambivalent in children, is often associated with an inconsistent parenting pattern. The caregiver tends to give mixed signals by sometimes being responsive to the child’s needs and sometimes being misattuned or unavailable to the child. This may be very confusing for the child, make them feel unstable and regard their parents’ actions as unpredictable or unreliable. They may become very distressed when separated from their caregiver, and even when he/she returns, they continue to display anxious behaviour and do not appear comforted. 

Please note that this doesn’t mean that the parents intentionally neglect the child’s needs but it could be that the caregivers didn’t meet the child’s needs in the way that they wanted. As such, they opt to throw tantrums and become clingy to get their attention. These children tend to be very sensitive and self-sacrifice to take care of others even at their own expense. 

When one grows up with this style, one may have some of the following characteristics:

  • Fear of rejection
  • Need for constant reassurance
  • Being needy/clingy
  • Fear of abandonment
  • Depending on a partner for validation and emotional regulation
  • Codependent tendencies
  • Jealous tendencies
  • Low self-esteem
  • Highly sensitive to criticism 
  • Needing approval from others
  • Difficulty trusting others
  • Difficulty being alone
  • Feeling unworthy of love and not being good enough
  • Self- critical and indecisive 
  • Overthinking tendencies 
  • May develop anxiety disorders as adults

2. Dismissive Avoidant (Low anxiety, High avoidance): This attachment style is formed when the child’s caregiver is absent or emotionally distant or busy or disinterested in their emotional needs. The child could be expected to be independent and the caregiver might also disapprove if the child shows any display of emotions. When the child is upset, their distress is regularly ignored or dismissed. Because their needs aren’t met, the child perceives that as rejection. They thus learn to detach from their feelings because they don’t trust that their caregivers will be there for them and they rarely seek comfort from parents/caregivers. So even when they’re separated from their parent they react fairly calmly and do not embrace their return.

As such a child grows up, he/she may develop some of the following:

  • Super independent 
  • Have a hard time trusting others
  • Fear of intimacy or closeness (Most of their relationships are surface level)
  • Uncomfortable expressing their feelings
  • Have commitment issues
  • Emotionally unavailable
  • Often feel self-sufficient and don’t need others
  • Feel threatened by anyone who tries to get close to them
  • May distance themselves or shut down during conflict
  • May find relationships to be suffocating

3. Fearful Avoidant (High anxiety, High avoidance): Also known as disorganized attachment, this style is often associated with childhood trauma or abuse. Fear for their caregivers is also present. The child grows up in a chaotic, threatening or abusive environment and because the caregiver shows inconsistent and unpredictable behaviour the child starts fearing for their safety. The child might seek closeness to the caregiver but at the same time, pull themselves away from them, due to fear.

When such a child is separated from their caregiver and then the parent returns, they may act oddly, by approaching them then turning away from them or freezing or even hitting the caregiver. All this is because of the childhood trauma they’ve experienced. In short, the parent is considered a source of both comfort and fear and thus the child adopts disorganized behaviour.

A child with a disorganized attachment may grow up to have some of the following symptoms:

  • Fear of rejection
  • Fear of intimacy
  • Inability to regulate emotions
  • High levels of anxiety
  • Difficulty trusting others
  • Signs of both avoidant and anxious attachment styles
  • In relationships, they almost always expect and wait for disappointment, hurt and rejection to come.
  • Contradictory and unstable behaviours i.e. might be clingy one moment then dismissive at another.
  • They both desperately crave affection and want to avoid it at all costs.
  • They want to love and be loved but are afraid to let anyone in.
  • Likely to develop mental disorders such as personality or mood disorders or even substance abuse and self-harm.

4. Secure Attachment style (Low avoidance, Low anxiety): A child with this attachment style grows up with reliable caregivers who were quick to soothe, comfort and meet their needs. This creates trust towards the parents. The child feels safe, seen, understood and valued. They know they can depend on their caregivers to be there for them consistently and support them to explore the world around them to attain autonomy and independence.

The child feels safe to ask for reassurance or validation without punishment from the caregivers. When such a child is separated from their parent, they become distressed but upon their return, they welcome them warmly and with positive emotions.

As adults, those with this attachment tend to have healthy relationships and positive traits such as:

  • Ability to regulate emotions
  • High self-esteem and confidence
  • Great and effective communication skills
  • Comfortable being alone
  • Comfortable with closeness and mutual dependency
  • Easily trusting and bonding with others
  • Goal-oriented
  • Show healthy and balanced behaviours in relationships
  • Ability to open up and seek emotional support
  • Being easy to connect with
  • Ability to manage conflict well
  • Strong capacity to reflect on how you are being in a relationship

Take note that attachment styles aren’t everything in relationships and can be influenced by other factors as well. 

These styles are not permanent and can change over time through different experiences and variables in one’s life. For example, an individual with an insecure attachment can change to become secure when they’re in a relationship with an individual who has a secure attachment style and influences them to feel safe and calm as well. The opposite of this is also possible. Also, attachment styles are not mental disorders, even though they can make one more prone to certain disorders.

Nonetheless, we cannot undermine the impact of these styles on our relationships. Many times, people have unhealthy behavioural patterns and are unable to regulate their emotions without understanding the root cause of it all; attachment styles. These styles affect how we function, behave, think, connect with others and even feel. Inadvertently, they also affect how we raise our children and which kind of environment we provide for them. To break this dysfunctional cycle, it is important for each individual with an insecure style to actively work on changing to become secure.

How can one change that? Below is your answer.

Here are a few tips to acquire the secure attachment style:

1. Self-awareness is the first and most important step towards healing. Do some research on the topic so that you may understand the different attachment styles further and yourself better. YouTube can be a good place to start for we have many resources there concerning this topic. Personally, I love ‘The Personal Development School’ on Youtube for how they explain these matters, but the resources are so many.

Do understand that sometimes an individual could have different habits that are associated with different styles and this is because of the different experiences and traumas we face at different phases in our lives. We have several online quizzes on attachment styles that can help you in finding out which style you predominantly have. One link where you can conduct the quiz is here. They usually show you percentages of the attachment styles that you have according to your tendencies and habits. The biggest percentage shows your most predominant attachment style.

2. Once you have understood your attachment style, you should do some much-needed self-reflection and take the time to analyze your own emotions, habits, your triggers, how you deal with conflict, communicate and your interactions with other people. Pay attention to the emotional and physical sensations that come up around emotional intimacy. You could have a journal specifically for this and you could jot down what’s going on with you daily. This helps in not just understanding oneself but also gives you some relief from whatever emotions you carry with you.

3. This journey might not be easy so you must be ready to do the work however hard it might get. It is important to accept your weaknesses, unhealthy habits and the things you might need to work on. Be self-conscious about your thoughts and emotions and learn how to regulate them, soothe yourself, and positively interact with others.

4. Most of the time, we tend to attract people who will represent all the suppressed parts within us, or the parts that we wish were stronger within us or parts we’re ashamed of and wish to change. So for example, if someone is quiet and emotionally detached, they will attract a partner who is emotional and expressive. If someone is controlling and demanding, they attract a partner who is pleasing and submissive. If someone has a hard time asking for help, they attract a partner who asks for help all the time …etc.

A good example of such a case according to attachment styles is that anxious preoccupied individuals and avoidants tend to subconsciously attract one another despite the two being very opposite. The anxious one is impressed by the avoidant’s independence and mysteriousness as they wish they could depend less on others and be more self-reliant. The avoidant on the other hand is attracted to the anxious person because they provide endless love, warmth and intimacy-something they didn’t quite have while growing up.

But the problem is, the two individuals have very different needs when it comes to relationships. The anxious one wants closeness and intimacy from their partner and tends to be clingy and needy, while the avoidant one is intimidated by closeness and really values their independence and personal space. So despite their attraction, the relationship tends to become a chaotic trap of triggers and unmet needs. The two genuinely struggle to provide their partner with what they need. The avoidant feels the anxious one is too much, while the anxious one feels their avoidant partner is not enough for them. In fact, they call it the anxious-avoidant trap/dance/cycle, because the two individuals feel stuck. They have a hard time making it work but also a hard time moving away from each other. (You can read more about this here)

 It is thus very very important for a couple to understand their individual attachment styles and how they could be triggering each other. It is not impossible to make such relationships work but they need a certain level of self-awareness and willingness to grow and change for the better.

The two of you must have open and effective communication about your needs, worries and concerns so that you can also support each other in your healing journey. It might get very uncomfortable, especially for the avoidants but there is no shortcut to the process. The good thing is, the outcome is totally worth it!

Side note: Many times, the partners we’re seeking have traits and behaviours like one of our parents. The reason for this is that we’re trying to find an outcome that will be different from how it was with our parent. For example, if your father was inconsistent with you, you’d subconsciously find a partner who will also have inconsistent habits. The hope here is that you’ll be able to make them grant you the stability and consistency that you lacked in your childhood and thereafter heal your childhood wound.

We subconsciously get into such relationships in an attempt to heal that part of us that is insecure about our worthiness and to prove that we’re lovable after all. And sometimes it becomes a lifetime pattern of seeking such partners.

The way to avoid this pattern of attracting people who have unappealing behaviours like your parent, is by first trying to understand what you’re trying to heal. For example, are you trying to be loved by an abusive partner? Are you trying to attain affection from an avoidant? Once you identify what your core wounds are, then you can seek what you need from people who are actually capable of giving what you need-accepting you and proving to you that you’re not too much.

5. Working with a therapist may be the best way to go about this for they will guide you on how to regulate yourself and change for the better whilst taking into consideration your unique life story and personality.

6. If it might be hard for you to work with a therapist on this, you can enrol in online courses that are specific to your attachment style and they can help you navigate all types of relationships and emotions to attain a secured attachment. There are also some attachment-style workbooks that have practical exercises to deal with your style. Among the websites that offer such courses and workbooks include https://www.attachmentproject.com/ and https://university.personaldevelopmentschool.com/ among many others. There are also courses that are specific for couples of different attachment styles-showing them how their pairing works and how to navigate their relationships in a healthy manner.

7. Do understand that sometimes parents aren’t aware of how they’re emotionally affecting their children and are simply doing their best (abusive parents are a different case here). So you can acknowledge the effect they had on you, without blaming them for it. Most times they can’t undo anything they did and it is best if we all just looked forward and focused on the healing journey.

8. Regardless of the painful experiences of your past that shaped who you are, as an adult, it is best to leave the past where it is and take full control of your life now. Healing is an intentional choice that each one of us should make. So don’t allow your trauma to permanently ruin your emotional stability and how you relate with others.

9. Start working on building closer relationships with people by listening to their needs, worries and concerns as well. You could develop a step-by-step approach on how to effectively communicate with others, how to let them in and meet their emotional needs as well.

10. Do not beat yourself up for your shortcomings and don’t try to change everything at once. Have a system/plan which takes you step by step without overwhelming yourself. Remember that this is a long process and your effort is much appreciated. Involve a close friend or partner or even a trusted family member so that they can act as your support system and also hold you accountable. Most importantly, remember that consistency is key! Don’t expect your partner or your friends to do the work for you.

By consciously working through your unhealthy patterns and triggers, you can create satisfying relationships. So don’t give up! This is your personal project-strive to take intentional steps towards healing and healthier relationships.


Kp_counseling (on IG)










To read part 2 of this series, click here

Considerations For Marriage

Please note that the whole purpose of this segment is to give you a guide on how to go about the process of choosing a spouse, not rules to be followed strictly. Life is not simply black and white and fate is very very mysterious. So many very unlikely individuals have had very successful marriages and so many who seemed well put together ended up divorced. There is no 100% guaranteed formula for a successful marriage because at the end of the day, as much as we make the choices, fate could have very different plans for us. Many things differ from era to era, case to case, individual to individual, culture to culture and context to context so please read the following with an open mind.

5. Age

They say age doesn’t really matter and over the years we’ve had individuals with huge age gaps and the opposite of that as well and still managed to have a healthy marriage. Shaykh Waleed Basyouni mentioned that sometimes when there is a huge age gap there can be a disconnection between the two. For example, right now Gen Z, they’re very different from previous generations. They are in a totally different era. They have different mannerisms, wordings, jokes, lifestyles and values that older generations might not necessarily agree with, understand or connect with. As such, it is advisable to have a smaller age gap, but if otherwise, just understand in advance how that can affect your interactions as spouses then decide whether that works for you.

6. Physical Attraction

Beauty is truly in the eyes of the beholder and one man’s meat is another man’s poison. As such, it is very important that an individual is physically attracted to the person they intend to marry. This should be based on their own opinions not what others think/feel about the individual. Some individuals have stronger chemistry and connection from the first time they meet and for others, the attraction grows over time and as they know more about the person. However, Shaykh Waleed mentioned that when considering an individual, that physical attraction shouldn’t be completely zero. There should be at least some attraction which then gives you room to grow in love with them. But if it is completely zero, then perhaps you should consider someone else. Physical attraction cannot be forced; it is a natural thing. So even if someone has very good character and deen but you feel nothing at all towards them, then you shouldn’t feel guilty to decline the offer.

I understand that sometimes the pressure from the family is a lot and they would mock your decision to decline a person you’re not physically attracted to, but at the end of the day, you’re the one who will live with this person for the rest of your life. This doesn’t mean the individual is ugly or entirely unattractive. In fact, to someone else, they could be the prettiest/most good-looking person they’ve ever seen. But you don’t see or feel it that way, and that is okay. We, human beings are like art. And art is very subjective. Each one is drawn to something different. It would be very unfair to both of you if you accepted someone you don’t feel attracted to and then spent your years wondering how it would have been if you found someone else or waited for someone you’re attracted to. You both deserve better than that. And if you’re on the receiving end of a rejection, do know that one person’s rejection doesn’t mean that you’re unattractive to everyone else. It can be as hard as it gets, but have faith that there is a person decreed for you who will absolutely love everything about you.

It is also important to note that sometimes people look very different in photos and in real life. You could be attracted by someone’s photo but when you meet them in real life, you would feel differently about them. As such, make a point to see an individual in real life before proposing.

There is also another wisdom in seeing a person before marriage because you could notice something in their mannerisms that could enhance your attraction to them or otherwise. Shaykh gave an example of a woman who was proposed to by a very good-looking and fashionable man. When he came to her home to meet the family, the man ate in such a disgusting way that the woman was immediately put off. And this happens. Sometimes people are put off by seemingly small things or what they would consider their pet peeves and reject the proposal. Please note that this does not in any way mean we should seek perfection (because that is never attainable) but rather, when it comes to physical attraction, it is entirely upon you to decide what is something you can live with and what is not.

From Jaabir ibn ‘Abd-Allaah: “The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: ‘If one of you proposes marriage to a woman, if he can look at her to see that which will encourage him to go ahead and marry her, then let him do so.’ I proposed marriage to a young woman, and I used to hide where I could see her, until I saw that which encouraged me to go ahead and marry her, so I did so.’” According to another report he said, ‘a young woman of Bani Salamah. I used to hide from her, until I saw that which encouraged me to go ahead and marry her, so I did so.” (Saheeh Abi Dawood, no. 1832, 1834)

From al-Mugheerah ibn Shu’bah: “I proposed marriage to a woman, and the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: ‘Have you seen her?’ I said, ‘No.’ He said, ‘Look at her, because it is more fitting that love and compatibility be established between you.’” According to another report: “So he did that, and he married her and mentioned that they got along.” (Reported by al-Daaraqutni, 3/252 (31, 32); Ibn Maajah, 1/574)

7. Culture

Allah Subhanahu Wataala said in Surah Al-Hujurat, verse 13: “O humanity! Indeed, We created you from a male and a female, and made you into peoples and tribes so that you may ˹get to˺ know one another. Surely the most noble of you in the sight of Allah is the most righteous among you. Allah is truly All-Knowing, All-Aware.”

Interracial/Intercultural marriages can be as beautiful as they get. They give us a chance to appreciate our different cultures and traditions. Yet when we are entering into a different culture, we should be prepared for what comes next.

We do have tribes and races that are very traditional and really uphold their culture and values, for example, Indians, Arabs, and other types of Asians. Then we have like Western cultures that are a bit flexible and more easily embrace others’ cultures. So it may be easier for an American for example to embrace the culture of their spouse. But imagine when two strong traditional tribes come together, there might be some challenges that will come about. For example, (not to be stereotypical or anything but these are just examples so as to illustrate how two different traditional individuals can merge) an Arab woman getting married to a Chinese, Indian or Mexican man. Please note that this is not to say that it can’t happen in a healthy way, it is possible. Yet when an individual is about to enter into a family of a different strong culture, it is important for them to take time to understand the other culture, calculate the risks, consider the clashes in lifestyles, gender roles and expectations and think about their willingness to adapt to that other culture.

Also, when an individual or a family states that they prefer someone from their own tribe or culture, let’s not rush to label them as ‘racist’ because sometimes, people actually prefer someone with a similar culture, so as to avoid interracial clashes. This doesn’t make them racists. By all means, we should seek what we believe will make us most comfortable. I know in Mombasa we hear people a lot of times saying in a negative tone ‘wanaoana wenyewe kwa wenyewe’ but there is nothing wrong with that (unless this is done because the said tribe feels superior or undermines others). Otherwise, if it is just based on preferences then this does not equate to racism. We have to understand, some people/tribes/cultures are open to new and different experiences, and some prefer familiarity and that is okay too.

The question then comes, where do we draw the line between personal preferences and racism/colorism?

Personal preference in the case of marriage is when an individual, for example, is attracted to a certain skin tone, or certain physical features that are mostly found in a certain tribe/race. So it is okay for someone to say I would love to have a dark wife or a fair husband or a wife from this tribe. In its original sense, this is very natural. Each individual loves different features and sometimes these features are predominant in a certain tribe.

Racism/Colorism is when an individual discriminates against certain people because of their race or color. Like when someone says, ‘I would never marry a dark-skinned man or I would never marry from this tribe’ in a tone that insinuates that anyone with dark skin or from this particular tribe can never be beautiful. It could also mean, this individual has classified an entire group of people based on race or color to show them as unattractive. That is undermining the tribe/race/color, and this is what is wrong.

I know racism is as real as it gets and I will not in any way try to sweep it under the rug. However, let’s not be quick to judge others’ intentions and classify them as racists.

Additionally, we have to be careful about how we show or talk about our preferences. As much as each individual has a right to have personal preferences about certain tribes, skin tones and even body types, we have to be sensitive not to sound degrading to those with features other than what we prefer. For example, (and this is very common), someone could say they prefer petite or slender women, and that is very okay. However, some go ahead and explain why they don’t like women who are curvier or why ONLY petite women can be attractive. Some are even insensitive enough and say such comments in front of curvier women or on social media platforms. This is very inappropriate and just wrong. We’re human after all, and we need to treat others with kindness regardless of our opinions.

8. Financial stability

Marriage is of course a huge responsibility and the man becomes responsible for the maintenance of his wife and family.

A hadeeth was narrated by al-Bukhaari (5066) and Muslim (1400) from Ibn Mas‘ood, who said: “We were with the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), young men who had nothing of wealth. The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said to us: “O young men, whoever among you can afford it, let him get married, for it is more effective in lowering the gaze and guarding one’s chastity. And whoever cannot afford it should fast, for it will be a shield for him.” 

This hadith means that if a young man can afford the cost and duties of marriage, he should hasten to get married and protect his chastity. Naturally then, when choosing a spouse, the families ask about the man’s work and income in order to identify whether he can take his responsibilities as required. This thus is an important factor to consider.

Yet still, on the other hand, this does not in any way mean that one has to be super wealthy to be married. It doesn’t mean either that if one is poor they shouldn’t get married. Allah, may He be exalted, says: “And marry those among you who are single (i.e. a man who has no wife and the woman who has no husband) and (also marry) the Salihoon (pious, fit and capable ones) of your (male) slaves and maid-servants (female slaves). If they be poor, Allah will enrich them out of His Bounty. And Allah is All-Sufficent for His creatures needs, All-Knowing (about the state of the people)” [an-Noor 24:32].

As indicated here, “Poverty in and of itself is not an impediment to marriage if the husband is religiously committed and believes sincerely in his Lord, and the woman is likewise. If a person sincerely puts his trust in Allah, wants to keep himself chaste, and seeks that which is with Allah of bounty, there is the hope that Allah will help such a person and grant him provision from His bounty. At-Tirmidhi (1655) narrated, in a report which he classed as hasan, from Abu Hurayrah, who said: The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “There are three whom Allah is bound to help: the mujaahid who strives (in jihad) for the sake of Allah, the mukaatib (a slave who has made a contract of manumission with his master) who wants to pay off his manumission, and a man who gets married, seeking to remain chaste.”. It was classed as hasan by al-Albaani in Saheeh at-Tirmidhi. 

As such, these cases vary according to people’s situations and customs.



‘Fiqh of Love’ course by Al Maghrib Institute



Thank you for reading, I pray this was beneficial. Please stay tuned for part 4 as we delve into the questions to ask potential spouses, identifying red flags and involving Allah Subhanahu Wataala in the entire process.

To read the first part, click here

Considerations For Marriage

Before we start on what things to consider, here are essential things first:

*Know what you’re looking for.

*Be moderate on the things you’re seeking in a spouse i.e. Be flexible; don’t be too rigid, too specific or have too high expectations. All human beings are flawed in some way, if you aren’t flexible or are seeking perfection, you might struggle for too long to find what you’re looking for, or never find it. Please note that I am not saying you should lower your standards but be realistic in your expectations.

For example, you say you want a husband between the age of 30-35 years but he must be making five or six figures income. I mean, yeah we do have some who do make six figures in that age group but how many?! True, you might actually be lucky and find one, but realistically, is that possible? Are you in an environment that has such individuals? Are you coming from an extremely wealthy family that has connections with other extremely wealthy families that can give you a network to find such an individual? Are you in any way exposed to such individuals? How much do you earn yourself? What are you bringing to the table that would interest such a man/woman to marry you?

Know your worth yes. Have standards yes. Don’t put yourself down yes yes yes! But be realistic, be smart, please.

*Be very aware of the assumption of ‘He/she will change.’ People only change when they are aware and want and put in 100% effort to change. So when considering any individual, see them for who they are NOW, not what they potentially could be in the future if they change. This can easily be one of the most painful ways to harm yourself. The only way this could work is if you find a person already in the process of working on themselves and changing their bad behaviours through taking concrete steps like going for therapy, or rehabilitation (in case of addiction) or having a concrete plan to cut down on their habits (and following that plan!), or acquiring skills that will help with the improvement of the self, not just fake promises and empty words.

* Marry someone who understands your situation. For example, you’re a revert and have no family that is still in touch with you. You’d want someone to understand your situation and not take advantage of you. Or you come from an abusive family and have strained relationships with the members. Some people don’t understand these situations and still expect you to just tolerate the abuse. Or a widow/divorcee with children from a previous marriage-she’d need a man who understands that these children will become his responsibility after marriage.

Another example, an Israeli sister reverts to Islam and wants to get married to a Palestinian whose family is in Gaza. There’s quite a conflict of interest here because each has their family in the warring places, so how will this work? Will the wife understand if the husband refuses to go visit his Israeli in-laws? Will she understand if the husband’s family do not accept her? Will she understand when her husband tells the children about the Palestinian occupation in his own view of things? I mean, some people do take these risks and do get married. But it is important to be prepared for the challenges that come after that.

*Be careful not to let anyone abuse you or take advantage of you. For example, someone wants to marry you in order to acquire citizenship or a green card or a prestigious job in your father’s company etc. Or a man wants to marry a wealthy widow to take advantage of her wealth, or a man wants to marry a revert without paying mahr or giving her very minimal amounts due to her lack of knowledge on her mahr rights. This just shows that someone has no respect for you and your emotions; they’re simply using you.

*Don’t give up hope on what you’re looking for. Marriage is a matter of fate and Allah knows which is the best time for you. Have patience, do your due diligence by searching and make lots of dua that Allah grants you what you want and what is kheyr for you. In your dua, mention the qualities and characteristics you’re looking for. Don’t be shy and don’t limit yourself in what you ask for, for it is only with Allah that there are absolutely no limits in asking.

So what are the things you should consider for marriage?

Please note that the whole purpose of this segment is to give you a guide on how to go about the process of choosing a spouse, not rules to be followed strictly. Life is not simply black and white and fate is very very mysterious. So many very unlikely individuals have had very successful marriages and so many who seemed well put together ended up divorced. There is no 100% guaranteed formula for a successful marriage because at the end of the day, as much as we make the choices, fate could have very different plans for us. Many things differ from era to era, case to case, individual to individual, culture to culture and context to context so please read the following with an open mind.

1. Love

So in the first part of this series, we mentioned how we shouldn’t overestimate the importance of love ALONE in a marriage. As much as that is very true, we can never deny how essential it is for the growth and nurturing of that marriage.

Ibn Abbas reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “We do not see for those who love one another anything like marriage.[Sunan ibn Majah 1847]

This hadith acknowledges that two individuals can in fact have feelings of admiration and affection before marriage, and the best thing for them is to get married so as to safeguard their chastity and complete half their deen. When love is pure and for the sake of Allah then it is one of the most beautiful things.

We further understand the importance of love in marriage when Allah Subhanahu Wataala said in Suratul Rum, verse 21: “And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that ye may dwell in tranquillity with them, and He has put love and mercy between your (hearts): verily in that are Signs for those who reflect.”

I remember watching this very insightful clip by Sheikh Nouman Ali Khan where he explains this ayah and he said, “Allah mentioned one thing about marriage that is on top, number one. Everything else is later. He said he made you into spouses for the purpose that you could find peace (tranquility). Sometimes you could love someone without respecting them. You can love someone without being honest with them. You can love someone without caring for them properly. You can love someone but hate their family. And all of these things, you know what they do? They take away the peace. So even if love is there, peace is not. And when peace is not there, the purpose of marriage is gone. The purpose is not love; this comes from Allah (As stated in the ayah above). The purpose is not care (or mercy) that comes from Allah too. Your purpose is to find peace.” (Watch it here)

So the question then becomes, what gives you peace? Is it being respected? Is it being valued? Is it being understood? Is it being prioritized? All the above? Whatever it is, that is what you should be looking for.

I absolutely love poetry so here’s one of my favourite pieces by Andrea Gibson:

“Lately I’ve been thinking about who I want to love, and how I want to love, and why I want to love the way I want to love, and what I need to learn to love that way, and how I need to become, to become the kind of love I want to be. And when I break it all down, when I whittle it into a single breath, it essentially comes out like this: before I die, I want to be somebody’s favourite hiding place, the place they can put everything they need to survive, every secret, every solitude, every nervous prayer, and be absolutely certain that I will keep it safe. I will keep it safe.”

This isn’t plain old love, this is about being someone’s love and some more; bringing them peace and being their home-their safest haven. Being a source of warmth, calm and support for them 🙂

Again, hopeless romantics, this is in no way an undermining of the importance of love in marriage. If you love someone, do marry them, for marriage without love is tasteless. But please do consider the other important things to you too. The hope and prayer is that we get to experience the love, the peace and the mercy all at once, ameen!

2. Deen

The Prophet (ﷺ) said, “A woman is married for four things: for her wealth, for her lineage, for her beauty or for her piety. Select the pious, may you be blessed!”. (Riyad as-Salihin 364)

And in another hadith, the prophet peace be upon him said, “When someone with whose religion and character you are satisfied asks your daughter in marriage, accede to his request. If you do not do so there will be temptation in the earth and extensive corruption.” (Mishkat al-Masabih 3090)

It is without a doubt that religion is the most important thing to consider in a future spouse. The question to ask oneself is, ‘when I say I want someone religious, what exactly do I mean?’ Religion has levels to it. Someone could say I want a man who is Muslim and fulfils the obligations i.e. prayers, saum, zakat, hajj..khalas. That is enough for me.

Someone else could say I want a man who not only fulfils the obligations but observes the sunnah as well and avoids innovations and major sins i.e. fasting Monday and Thursdays, gives charity regularly, prays qiyam, does not listen to music, follows Qur’an and Sunnah.

Someone else could say I want a man who has studied the Islamic shariah or is an imam or is a hafidh…

You get the gist? Religiosity has levels to it and it is very important for you to know exactly what you’re looking for. Here’s why:

People are on different journeys towards Allah and to some extent, we expect our partners to join us in those journeys and help us grow. However, we also have to be realistic about it. Some individuals are willing to improve their deen and grow and some people are comfortable where they are. So what of those unwilling to become better in their deen? They never said they want to change, why are you giving yourself that task then? People ultimately change because they want to, not because someone else wants to. Advice is golden, sure, people do influence each other to become better, sure. But marrying someone and you’re not pleased with where they are at with their religiosity then trying to force it down their throat thereafter is very frustrating for both parties.

For example, an imam marries a non-hijabi woman. If the woman herself has continuously (and not just for the sake of marriage) shown interest in improving her Islam then that is a different case. He most probably will be a positive influence on her. But imagine him marrying her and then forcing her to wear the hijab. In his opinion, this is his responsibility, this is his wife…that is all true. But you also knew the woman you intended to marry wasn’t wearing hijab, why accept her if you were not pleased with how she is, in the first place?

Or in the case of a pious woman marrying a man who only prays during Ramadhan and he doesn’t even see a problem with that. It then becomes a torment for the woman, trying to push him every single day to pray.

In short, marry someone who doesn’t have a huge gap with your level of religiosity or marry someone who has a higher level than you if you intend to acquire their assistance in your journey to Allah. This does not in any way mean you should undermine anyone. Our imaan is always going up and down and perhaps someday, the person you once looked down upon could one day be closer to Allah than you. However, to avoid problems and unrealistic expectations between the couple, it is advisable that we seek people who are at least close to us or slightly higher than us. This also includes considerations of their sect, aqeedah and avoidance of innovation and major sins.

3. Character

Religiosity without good character traits is not enough. This is because our religion highly promotes good character and thus our prophet peace be upon him was sent to us as a role model and a guide so as to direct us on how to be noble human beings.

This is important to look out for because sometimes seemingly religious people might have such bad behaviours and even abusive habits. So even if you’re pleased with someone’s piety, check out their character too.

Some of the good character traits and qualities to be observed in a person are:

*Generosity and kindness (not just in money but everything i.e. generous in your smile, generous in your giving, generous in your assistance to others by using your time or energy etc)


*Wisdom and Maturity


*Etiquette in talking, eating and how you act around others

*Smiling face

*Modesty (both men and women)


*Compassion/Loving nature

*Fertile women (The prophet peace be upon him said, ‘Marry the one who is fertile and loving, for I will boast of your great numbers.’ (Sunan an-Nasa’i 3227). Ibn Qudaamah said in al-Mughni:  It is mustahabb that she be from a family whose women are known to bear many children. This comes as a high suggestion from the prophet peace be upon him, nonetheless, it doesn’t mean that infertile women shouldn’t be married. Just as it is permissible for a woman to marry an infertile man, it is also permissible for a man to marry an infertile woman. 

*Virginity for both man and woman (This does not mean the widows and divorcees are not valued, but rather, this is mentioned because the first experiences cause a strong emotional connection between the couple. Nonetheless, the prophet peace be upon him also advised the marriage of divorcees and widows in other contexts. So this differs according to the context).

4. Suitability and Compatibility

“When someone with whose religion and character you are satisfied asks your daughter in marriage, accede to his request. If you do not do so there will be temptation in the earth and extensive corruption.”

In the explanation of the hadith above, shaykh Waleed Al Basyouni mentioned that when the prophet said ‘someone whose religion and character you are satisfied with’, the word ‘satisfied’ means that you as a father/walii finds this individual as a suitable match for your daughter. Suitable not just in terms of their religiosity or character but also in terms of other matters. This means that sometimes a good, pious man could want your daughter for marriage but may not be suitable for her in one aspect or another.

Lineage and status: Many people consider family lineage and status in order to avoid incompatibility between individuals, however, we do have several cases during the prophet’s time where women of very high status were wedded to ex-slaves or sons of ex-slaves. For example, it has been reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) married Fatimah bint Qays who was a Qurashy to his freed slave Usamah ibn Zayd (may Allah be pleased with them). The prophet also asked Banu Bayadah to marry off one of his daughters to Abu Hind who was a cupper. There are so many such incidents that happened during the prophet’s time. This is based on the general meaning of Allah’s Saying: “Verily, the most honourable of you with Allâh is that (believer) who has At-Taqwâ [i.e. he is one of the Muttaqûn (the pious)].”

Read the response below to a question on marrying above one’s social level from the website islamqa.info.

Social level may refer to lineage, wealth, education, profession or job, or it may mean all of them. If a man’s religious commitment and character are pleasing, then he is compatible with the woman, no matter what her social level, according to the more correct view. This is the basic principle and the ruling of sharee’ah. But it remains to examine the situation of each suitor and whether he is suitable to marry one whose social level is above him, or not. 

It seems – and Allaah knows best – that if the difference is great in terms of lineage, wealth, education and profession, that it is not advisable to go ahead with this marriage, because there are usually problems from the woman or her family. There may be differences in lifestyle and the ways in which they do things, which may put the spouses off one another. 

But if the difference is small, or it has to do with one area but can be made up for in another area, then there is nothing wrong with it in that case, such as if the husband is poor but he is highly qualified, or he is qualified for a decent job, or some of his family are of high standing and so on. 

Then there are cases in which the woman and her family are so righteous that they are above looking at material concerns and measuring people thereby, and they may want to choose a husband who is poor because of his righteousness and so on. But it is better if the husband is the one who is of a higher status.   

Whatever the case, the precise advice in each case depends on complete knowledge of both parties and their families. Perhaps you can seek advice from someone whom you trust in your community.

Personality: There is also the aspect of compatibility in personality. Perhaps a woman is very social and likes spending time outdoors i.e. an extrovert, while the husband is more of an indoor individual. Not that a marriage of these individuals will not work, for we have many of such contrasting personalities and they have succeeded in their marriages. The thing here is, it is important to know of these things before the marriage so that you can think of whether this works for you. For example, the extroverted wife would want to often times go visit her family and go for outings and events, and maybe the introverted husband would not be comfortable living with such a woman. It is thus important for the two to discuss how they can manoeuvre their different personalities and meet halfway so as to avoid frustrations in the marriage. Sometimes individuals decide to break off their deal based on the same.

Another example is, you might dislike very talkative and loud individuals, while someone else might find the very quiet ones to be too boring. Someone else might like individuals who are humorous and crack many jokes, while someone else might consider such individuals to be too unserious with life. Someone might like individuals who are ambitious and passionate about their careers while someone else might feel these individuals are just workaholics and have no life apart from their work. So as they say, one man’s poison is another man’s meat. What might work for you, might not work for another. So it is important for the two individuals to regard whether their personalities are suitable for each other, and if not, whether they’re still willing to go ahead with the marriage and what strategies will they have in place to balance their life.

Lifestyle: Considerations of one’s lifestyle should also be considered. For example, think of a man who is a social media influencer and he highlights his life online. Perhaps he might expect his wife to become part of this lifestyle and maybe attend events with him. Maybe he also travels a lot and stays away from home many times. Yet perhaps the woman values her privacy greatly and would not like to be subjected to fame. And perhaps she wouldn’t want her husband to be far away from her most of the time. A marriage between the two could lead to problems if boundaries are not set from the very beginning and strategies are not kept on how to balance their life.

Think of a very educated woman who has built her career throughout her adult years. Then a man marries her then asks her to stay at home and refuses for her to do any sort of work. Some women are actually okay with being housewives and dedicating their lives to nurturing their homes and children but some are not. As controversial as this topic gets, the bottom line is this: If what a woman is doing with her life is not appealing to you, kindly find someone else who will be what you need. You need a housewife? Find a woman who is ready to be one. You want a career woman who is empowered financially? Find one who is already that or is willing to take up a career. Don’t wait until after marriage to force anyone to live a life they didn’t sign up for.

Interests and Hobbies: When it comes to interests and hobbies, it is often better when potential spouses have similar interests and hobbies. These will give them an opportunity to bond further and get to spend their free time together. For example, individuals who both read could discuss their favourite books and give each other suggestions. Individuals who both love fitness could go for walks together or do fitness programs together. For individuals who both enjoy travelling, they can save money and time to travel together. For individuals who love nature, they could start their own small garden at their home or something like that. No two people will ever be 100% similar but having some similarities in interests can be advantageous in a marriage.

Education: If a woman who loves to seek knowledge is married to a man who dropped out of school because of a lack of interest in studies, then some problems might arise in their marriage. For example, the man might not see the need for his wife to keep studying and spending money on different courses. He might consider this a waste of time and money and might lead to constant complaints and fights on the same issue.

As such, it is advisable that individuals marry those who are almost similar in their education levels. The shaykh gave an example of a woman who had two degrees from Harvard University and was married to a young pious man who had only studied the deen and was an imam but he had no secular education at all. The shaykh explained that he knew both individuals and they were both pious and of very good character. Yet their marriage faced many challenges because each one of them had a very different way of looking at matters. This in no way means that one of them is better than the other. They both were good people, they just weren’t compatible.

Again, there are many couples who have healthy, loving relationships while having very different personalities, interests and even education levels. This should not discourage you to consider someone. Just be aware of those differences beforehand, think carefully about whether that works for you or not and how you can each healthily cope and adjust to your differences.

Please also note that having similar lifestyles, interests and personalities does not mean there will be no challenges at all. Even siblings born under the same roof and with the same parents have different ways of doing things. So what about someone from a different family, background and sometimes even different culture? As such, do know that there will still be adjustments and compromises to be made throughout the marriage.



‘Fiqh of Love’ Course from Al Maghrib Institute.



Stay tuned for part 3 as we delve deeper into other considerations for marriage. Thank you for reading, and please subscribe below! 🙂

“A man asked a shaykh what advice can you give me on how to do tarbiyah on my son. The shaykh asked him, how old is your son and he replied, he is only two months old. The shaykh replied, ‘You are late, you have already missed the train. The best time to seek advice on tarbiyah of your child is when you were ready to choose a spouse because true tarbiyah starts by choosing a righteous spouse for your children.”

(Quoted from Ibn Qayyim’s book by Ahlul-Athar twitter page)

I recently started doing a marriage course at Al-Maghrib institute called ‘Fiqh of Love’, one of the most eye-opening and thought-provoking courses I have ever come across. If it was possible, I’d advise every single Muslim to take the course because it not only covers in-depth Islamic aspects and rulings on marriage but psychological ones as well. I just HAVE TO share some very important tips shared, especially on how to choose a spouse.

*Please note some of the views that will be shared are my own.*

So let’s start from the beginning:


First of all, remove it from your mind that love is everything you need to sustain a marriage. That is an unrealistic view that’s very commonly romanticized in our society. Love is important yes, it nurtures a marriage yes, it brings out the most beautiful aspects of marriage yes…but is it the only thing you need to take with you into marriage? Absolutely not!

It is natural for people to feel some attraction, chemistry or connection towards another, and that is counted as the initial stage of love. Now during this phase, a lot of happy chemicals take over our bodies and bring out the excitement in us. And as these hormones continue existing in us, most often than not, people tend to become blinded by the other person’s character traits and behaviour.

According to sciencedaily.com, in an article named ‘What falling in love does to your heart and brain’ the writer states:

“MRI scans indicate that love lights up the pleasure center of the brain. When we fall in love, blood flow increases in this area, which is the same part of the brain implicated in obsessive-compulsive behaviors.

“Love lowers serotonin levels, which is common in people with obsessive-compulsive disorders,” said Mary Lynn, DO, co-director of the Loyola Sexual Wellness Clinic and assistant professor, Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, SSOM. “This may explain why we concentrate on little other than our partner during the early stages of a relationship.”

Doctors caution that these physical responses to love may work to our disadvantage.

“The phrase ‘love is blind’ is a valid notion because we tend to idealize our partner and see only things that we want to see in the early stages of the relationship,” Dr. Mumby said. “Outsiders may have a much more objective and rational perspective on the partnership than the two people involved do.”

You will sometimes find people who were once very deeply in love eventually end up in resentment over the same traits that initially attracted them to each other. For example, a woman could admire how charismatic, charming and outgoing a man is and choose to marry him for such traits. However, once the happy hormones have subsided, the lady starts getting irritated and feeling insecure when she realizes that the man is not just charming to her alone. She’d probably become overly jealous when she sees him interact with other people and how much attention he gets. And maybe the man doesn’t really have strict boundaries with others and this might agitate the lady. Mind you, these were the same traits she adored in him at the start, she knew how much attention he was getting but because she didn’t actually evaluate whether that personality will work with her overly jealous one, it brings out resentment in her.

Please note that I am not in any way saying that a charming individual is the wrong choice of spouse lol, nor am I saying it is okay to be overly jealous or violate boundaries…but rather, from the beginning, let not love blind you from critically thinking about your choices. You have to be self-aware about your own strengths, weaknesses, what exactly you need in a partner and be practical in how you make those choices.

There is this one very deep and profound quote by a poet called Taylor (from Unicorn Empire on Tumblr: https://bit.ly/3CQucqX) that moves me every.single.time!

“A lot of people ask me what my biggest fear is, or what scares me most. And I know they expect an answer like heights, or closed spaces, or people dressed like animals, but how do I tell them that when I was 17 I took a class called Relationships For Life and I learned that most people fall out of love for the same reasons they fell in it. That their lover’s once endearing stubbornness has now become refusal to compromise and their one track mind is now immaturity and their bad habits that you once adored is now money down the drain. Their spontaneity becomes reckless and irresponsible and their feet up on your dash is no longer sexy, just another distraction in your busy life.

Nothing saddens and scares me like the thought that I can become ugly to someone who once thought all the stars were in my eyes.”

In a follow-up post after the above trended on Tumblr, Taylor said:

“After my teacher introduced us to this theory, she asked us, “is love a feeling? Or is it a choice?” We were all a bunch of teenagers. Naturally, we said it was a feeling. She said that if we clung to that belief, we’d never have a lasting relationship of any sort.

She made us interview a dozen adults who were or had been married and we asked them about their marriages and why it lasted or why it failed. At the end, I asked every single person if love was an emotion or a choice.

Everybody said that it was a choice. It was a conscious commitment. It was something you choose to make work every day with a person who has chosen the same thing. They all said that at one point in their marriage, the “feeling of love” had vanished or faded and they weren’t happy. They said feelings are always changing and you cannot build something that will last on such a shaky foundation.

The married ones said that when things were bad, they chose to open communication, chose to identify what broke and how to fix it, and chose to recreate something worth falling in love with. The divorced ones said they chose to walk away.

Ever since that class, I have never looked at relationships in the same way again. I understood why arranged marriages worked. I discovered the difference between feelings and commitments. I’ve never gone for the person who makes my heart flutter or my head spin. I’ve chosen people who were committed to choosing me, dedicated to finding something to adore even on the ugliest days.

To conclude her post she added: ‘I no longer fear the day someone who I swore was the universe can no longer see stars in my eyes, as long as they still chose to look for them until they find them again.”

I think it is noteworthy to mention, Islam doesn’t reject the concept of love. It is natural and happens without our permission. Yet, what we choose to do with that love/attraction is considered our choice and responsibility. Religion gives us guidelines and limits to observe when it comes to our emotions because many times it can lead one to lose the akhera or both the akhera and dunya (May Allah protect and guide us).

There is so much wisdom in why our religion discourages emotional attachment before marriage. It is not to make us miss out on something we consider beautiful, but rather, to protect our souls from a considerable amount of pain and heartbreak that can be avoided.

Imam Ahmad said: “Don’t expose yourself to what you cannot handle.” Sometimes we think we’re smarter than everyone else and can handle whatever happens. But the reality is, we’re human beings and we all are weak to some extent. When Allah asked us to lower our gaze and protect our private parts, it was because HE KNOWS that that can be the greatest source of pain and despair for humankind.

Going back to the initial point on how love can blind us from being practical and realistic, the shaykh mentioned during the course, an incident that happened between a Muslim lady coming from a very rich background and a Muslim man who was struggling to make ends meet. The two fell in love and the man approached the girl’s family to propose to her. The family were against the marriage because they felt that the man wouldn’t be able to give their daughter the same kind of lifestyle and comfort she had at her father’s home. Mind you, this girl came from a wealthy family such that they had two house helps, and one of them was dedicated to serving the lady alone.

Despite the family’s objection, the girl insisted that she wanted the same man to be her husband. She said she doesn’t mind if he is poor. She is ready to eat plain bread and water. She is ready to make all sacrifices for him. The two eventually got married. After a while, the lady approaches the shaykh crying; she is pregnant and still loves her husband, but she cannot take it anymore. She is really frustrated because she is not used to doing any house chores and it is a big struggle for her. The husband on the other side is frustrated because she can’t seem to get it right and keeps comparing his wife to his mother’s abilities.

Now, we’re not saying that two people coming from different lifestyles and financial stability (or the lack thereof) can’t lead to a healthy marriage BUT it takes more than love to handle such issues. With love, people tend to think ‘we can overcome ANYTHING’. Yet for that to actually happen, more traits and actions are needed like open communication, compromise, patience, support, mercy, compassion, and kindness. If the couple had taken the time to communicate about the impending challenges before the marriage (or at least early on in the marriage) and come up with strategies and plans on how they’d cope, then maybe things would have turned out differently.

This doesn’t mean there is no hope for the couple to fix their marriage, but it always better to be proactive and prepared in such scenarios.

All we’re saying is, don’t make love your main or only criterion in choosing a spouse. Instead:

1. Work on being the right spouse: This means you actively strive for personal growth and development. Understand yourself; your needs, your strengths, your weaknesses, your preferences, your goals and what you want in life.

Questions to ask oneself include:

Am I ready for marriage? REALLY being ready for the life after marriage, not just the fun wedding part.

What are my likes and dislikes?

What are my positive and negative traits? (Be honest and realistic)

What are my weaknesses and how can I work on them?

How can I become a better human being?

What are my preferences?

How would I like my future spouse to be?

Knowing your triggers: What situations or kinds of people bring out strong (mostly negative emotions) in you? What makes you angry? What kind of person you cannot stand at all? What kind of behaviours puts you off or frustrate or irritate you?

If you already have an interest towards a person, and you’re working on being the right spouse, ask yourself: What will I contribute to this relationship? What will I be serving? Am I giving as much as I am receiving? (Those already married can reflect on these questions too).

Most importantly, have the intention of becoming the best version of yourself. Each one of us has baggage to work on, so none of us can say we have achieved the ultimate growth. We’re continuously exposed to different kinds of trauma and difficult situations that we need to learn and grow from. There is no end to the process. According to your intention, Allah will help and assist you.

2. Connect with Allah: Seek knowledge. Strive for closeness with Allah. Work on doing better and more in your ibadah. Know which ibadah uplifts you the most and use that to nurture yourself. For example, for some people, reading Qur’an brings them the most peace. For others it is praying tahajjud. For others it is charity etc. Once you identify what works best for you, use that as a tool to keep you grounded and at peace. When uplifted, you will definitely interact better with your spouse and those around you.

Allah Subhanahu Wataala says: “And be not like those who forgot Allah and He made them forget themselves.” When we’re distant from Allah, we’re distant from a crucial part of ourselves. How can we forget ourselves then expect to find a good match?

When you’re connected to Allah, you’ll choose someone connected too.

Moreover, make dua often for yourself, your future spouse and your offspring. Even if you haven’t found a person yet, pray for your future spouse; their well-being, their religiosity, their peace of mind, their growth, and their rizq. Ask Allah for what you’d love to see in them; whether character traits, personality type, piety level and even physical traits. Ask Allah to enable both of you to be wonderful spouses to each other and wonderful parents thereafter. Ask Allah for good offspring thereafter who’ll be obedient, pious, intelligent etc…whatever you want, ask Allah without limiting yourself.

3. Search for the right spouse: Find someone who will bring you closer to Allah. Someone who can be a good parent. Someone who is compatible with you. Someone who will support and help you along the way. And someone who will bring out the best in you.

Ask yourself: What exactly do I want in a spouse? Ideally, you could have a list of what your spouse MUST have, Negotiable things you want and Non-negotiables.

For example, a man says, my wife MUST observe the proper hijab, she preferably should have a university degree but if she just has a college diploma that works for me (negotiable), and she mustn’t be working in a field that requires night shifts (non-negotiable). Please note that this differs from person to person and it is okay for whichever preferences one has.

Another example, a woman says: My husband MUST have a halal income, he preferably should be a hafidh but if he isn’t, then he should at least be able to read the Qur’an fluently (negotiable), and he mustn’t have any kind of addiction (non-negotiable).

Alternatively, you could put your expectations into categories; Most important, least important and Able to compromise. The important thing is to identify these things beforehand. By the way, these lists aren’t limited to qualities and traits only. They also include physical features as well.

One interesting tip that shaykh Waleed Basyouni shared about what to do when considering a person is; look at whether the person meets the qualities you need, then have deen the last and final quality to check off. For example, a lady says I want a man who is ambitious, religious, financially stable and tall. If the man she is considering has all the above (or some, according to what is negotiable to her) then finally she considers his religiosity. Is he pious? If yes, she goes ahead. If not, she cancels the deal. This makes the process easier because sometimes you can get someone who is religious but doesn’t have the other qualities that are also important to you. So you keep deen as the final consideration to tick off for it is the most important one; the deal maker or the deal breaker.

In conclusion to this first part, do know that it is okay to fall in love but take your brain with you. Don’t get overly attached to anyone. Maintain your boundaries and protect your chastity.

Love is not always enough to sustain a marriage (or any kind of relationship).

It is also important for individuals to know the difference between love, obsession, infatuation, lust and sympathy/pity. Each individual should be able to identify and NAME which emotions they are experiencing. It gives one clarity on how to deal with those emotions once identified.

That’ll be the end of part one. Some of the points above will be talked about further in the follow-up articles of this series. Kindly subscribe below to receive the latest articles in your email box 🙂

My marriage has been rocky and it feels like I’m in the middle of an impending divorce.

It just happens; the drift I mean. One day you’re married, and suddenly it’s 15 years. And when you’re married for that long, there’s a certain weight of pressure and expectation from you from the society. You’ve been the icon of love for generation X, and the #Couplegoals for the Millenials, you cannot afford to disappoint them with love, can you?!

There is nothing I can pinpoint as the exact reason for our failing marriage. Life just happened. I got busier, and he stopped waiting for me. Meals are quieter nowadays. I see him look at me like he’s expecting me to say something. Do something. But I continue nibbling at my food, feeling like a failure. He sighs and moves away from the table. I can feel him slip his fingers away whenever I try to hold his hand. I can’t even remember the last time we shared a joke, or a bed, or a decent conversation like we frequently used to do. It is sad.

It is sad because I can feel him walking away. Like he wasn’t the love of my life. And the sadder part is that I’m letting him go.

We’ve had our ups and downs. We’ve been happier than ever. We’ve also cried a lot along the way. But we survived, we emerged stronger. But right now? The candle is burning down. The silence is alarming. The future is scary. And this, this right here is a desperate attempt to rekindle what was once a fierce, passionate love.

I have betrayed my husband in unimaginable ways- writing. Yes, writing is a lifetime commitment, very much like a marriage. What did you think I was talking about? SMH.

Anyway, as I was saying, life has been happening.

There was a time when I used to write twice a week! Can you believe that? Twice a week! Mashallah mashallah. It blows my mind to think about it now. I used to be the icon of persistence, J.K. Rowling would have been proud. Nowadays I write once a month after many many pep talks and postponements.

I want to blame it on adulting or use my final year excuse card that I am violently throwing around nowadays to any commitment or meeting or my several rejection letters from the literary world that make me question whether I am really good at this.

The most painful thing about rejections is the ‘almosts’. You almost made it. You’re almost there. You are so close to getting a hang of it. But when you’ve been an almost for more than a decade, what does that make you? It really does feel like you’re in an unrequited love situationship.

I however do not want to be ungrateful. I’ve come such a long, long way. I’ve had awesome milestones in my writing. I’ve had great feedback from my close people and people I’ve never even met too. I’ve seen myself grow alhamdulilah.

I remind myself of one of my readers who once asked me, ‘what’s success to you as a writer?’ And I said something along the lines of ‘I want my work to shake the literary world, you know, write something that will be a classic and be read like 100 years after my death.’ And I genuinely think most writers want that, you want your work to be noteworthy with the very sense of the word. I am no exception. I want that too. I want someone to read my work in France or Moldova or a remote Island somewhere that’s unheard of and be speechless for how amazing the book or novel was. I want my work to be translated into 28 languages or something. I do want that. And it’s not about the fame really, it’s about knowing that your work made such an impact, the whole world had to read it. But my reader’s response still strikes a chord, he said, ‘Isn’t it enough that one person read your work and was positively influenced by it?’

And I think about that response often. It should be enough. It doesn’t really have to be the whole world. If just one person is moved, positively impacted by my words, then I should count it as a win. A big one in fact.

I guess as human beings we always want more. We want to touch the sky even when our ladders can’t get us there. And it is not necessarily a bad thing.

I am not saying I want to give up on my dream. I still want my work to someday shake the literally world. Be so mind-blowing it becomes in everyone’s a must-read booklist. I deserve that for all that the hard work into this journey. But me writing this piece is a reminder to myself, and you who’s reading this, that it’s also okay to be where you are right now and I believe that’s what my reader meant by his response. I mean life is life and regardless of how big our dreams are, we shouldn’t forget to appreciate the smaller, bigger wins and the baby steps and the milestones.

I do not want to give up on this dream despite how hard it is becoming for me. I want to remember why I started. Why I never stopped even when life got really hectic and I had very valid excuses to stop. I want to remember why this marriage is important to me. And me admitting that I’m struggling with it is the first step to get back on track.

Dear reader, thank you for taking this journey with me throughout the highs and lows. I never take that for granted. I really appreciate you!

Cheers to being human, to working on our marriages, and to fulfilling our dreams!

P.S: I finally released hard copies of my full glossy book, Reflection & Resurgence. It is 1500/= only. You can buy your copy at 0704 731 560. The copies are limited! Don’t miss out!!

To read the second part of this series, click on the following link: https://lubnah.me.ke/women-of-jannah-asiyah-bint-al-muzahim/

When we commonly say we want a marriage and companionship like that of the prophet peace be upon him and Khadija bint Khuwaylid, and write down #goals under any mention of them, do we really take time to reflect on the characters of these two very noble individuals?

#Noble Lineage

Khadija bint khuwaylid was a pure Quraishi and was born from a very noble and wealthy family. Her tribe was the Banu Assad and her father was the representative of the tribe. Khadija had 3 brothers and 1 sister; Awwam, Hizam, Nawfal and Hala.

Interestingly, Khadija peace be upon her had a link to the prophet’s lineage. He was, Muhammad Ibn Abdillah Ibn Abdul Mutwalib Ibn Hashim Ibn Abdi Manaf Ibn Qusay Ibn Kilab. And she was Khadija bint Khuwaylid Ibn Asad Ibn Abdil Uzza Ibn Qusay Ibn Kilab. Therefore their link was Qusay Ibn Kilab who was the prophet’s 5th ancestor and Khadija’s fourth ancestor.

Also, Khadija’s cousin Barra was the grandmother of the prophet i.e. mother of his mother (Amina bint Wahhab). Interesting right? The Arabs especially those days were known for marrying within their own tribes and as such, it is no surprise that there are such links between the prophet and Khadija may peace be upon them.

Khadija is said to have been previously married twice before her marriage to the prophet peace be upon him. One was Hind Ibn Nabbash (Abu Hala) and another was Atiq ibn A’idh Al Makhzoum (also a Quraishi). Both were successful businessmen and she got to inherit the wealth after their death. There is a bit of confusion on whether both died leaving Khadija a widow or she was once divorced. There is quite some information missing especially about Khadija because she lived during the early Makkah period and not much was recorded. It is said that she had two children; Hind and Hala from her previous marriages, yet there isn’t much recorded about them either in the seera of the prophet peace be upon him. The assumption is that they either died early on or were not around, Allahu a3lam.

#A Blessed Union

From the very beginning, these two were very special individuals. Khadija was nicknamed as al-Tahira (The Pure One), Ameerat-Quraysh (Princess of Quraish) and Khadījah al-Kubra (Khadija The Great) even BEFORE Islam while Muhammad may peace be upon him was called Assadiqul Ameen (The Truthful and Trustworthy). Both of them were known for their exemplary and excellent mannerisms within the community. She used to feed and clothe the poor, assist her relatives financially, and even provide for the marriage of those of her kin who could not otherwise afford.

Khadija was a very wealthy woman and a merchant. Many men had wanted to marry her, yet she rejected the proposals. She used to send caravans to Syria and Yemen. She would hire young men to do business transactions on her behalf for a certain percentage of the profits. At that time, the prophet had no particular job and was reported to have worked as a shepherd for Bani Sa’d and in Makkah for a wage. It is then that Abu Talib, the uncle of the prophet peace be upon him approached Khadija and suggested that she hires Muhammad to manage her caravan trade. Khadija then accepted and sent Muhammad to Syria with her servant, Maisarah.

When the prophet peace be upon him returned to Makkah, Khadijah noticed more profits than usual. She asked Maisarah concerning Muhammad and he praised him of good manners, honesty, faith and sincerity. This moved Khadija deeply and she spoke to her friend Nafisa about him, who thereafter approached the prophet and asked him what she thought about Khadija and marriage to her. The prophet accepted and discussed the matter with his uncles who then made a proposal to her uncle It is commonly said that at the time, Khadija was forty years old while the prophet was twenty five years old. However, in another narration, Khadija was just 28 years old, only 3 years older than the prophet peace be upon him.

Now within the 15 years of marriage between the Khadija and Muhammad peace be upon them, not even a single fight or argument is recorded between the two. In fact, their marriage was praised in the community and this was due to the impeccable personality of both husband and wife. Mind you, when the prophet married Khadija, he had nothing while she was one of the wealthiest people in Makkah. The prophet lived in HER house and she supported him financially and emotionally as well (as we’ll see in a bit). This is to remind us that it takes two to tango. When both husband and wife are of good character and strive for goodness, their marriage will succeed by the will of Allah. Of course it can never be perfect as theirs was, but we can always look up to them and learn from their outstanding behaviour and personalities.

#Emotional and psychological support

The start of divine inspiration was in the late 30’s of the prophet’s life. He used to have dreams which would become true the following day. He started going into seclusion in the cave of Hira where he would meditate, worship and contemplate the creation. He would carry with him food and go away for days on end. It is said that sometimes Khadija herself would go up to cave Hira to deliver food for him, which is really not an easy task especially considering if she indeed was 15 years older than the prophet. Khadija never stopped the prophet from taking these trips, nor did she question his behaviour or have doubts on him. She did not complain for his long time away, instead, she supported him whole-heartedly and even encouraged him on his spiritual journey. It is also said in other narrations that Khadija did sometimes join him at the cave and worshiped together. This is the utmost level of trust and loyalty any woman can have for her husband.

When Muhammad peace be upon him was about forty years old, the angel came to him while he was at cave Hira and asked him to read. The Prophet peace be upon him replied, “I do not know how to read.” The Prophet added, “The angel caught me (forcefully) and pressed me so hard that I could not bear it anymore. He then released me and again asked me to read and I replied, ‘I do not know how to read.’ Thereupon he caught me again and pressed me a second time till I could not bear it any more. He then released me and again asked me to read but again I replied, ‘I do not know how to read (or what shall I read)?’ Thereupon he caught me for the third time and pressed me, and then released me and said, ‘Read in the name of your Lord, who has created (all that exists), created man from a clot. Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous.” (96.1, 96.2, 96.3) Then the prophet returned with the Inspiration and with his heart beating severely.

Then he went to Khadija bint Khuwaylid and said, “Cover me! Cover me!” Khadija embraced Muhammad and covered him till his fear was over. Now the mind-blowing thing here (Sheikh Yasir Qadhi was discussing this so beautifully and in depth in his series; links are below) is that normally, walking down from a cave as from cave Hira to Khadija’s house, which is about two miles away, would be enough to make one calm down. However, the prophet was still cold and terrified and only calmed down while in the embrace of his wife. This is enough to show us how much support and love the prophet got from his wife.

After that he told her everything that had happened and said, “I fear that something may happen to me.” Khadija replied, “Never! By Allah, Allah will never disgrace you. You keep good relations with your kith and kin, help the poor and the destitute, serve your guests generously and assist the deserving calamity-afflicted ones.” See, she doesn’t question his sanity. She doesn’t panic. She doesn’t tell him you should stop going to cave Hira for worship, instead she affirms him and reassures him that Allah would never disgrace him. Khadija had so much faith in God even before pillars of Imaan came about. And this just shows us how pure this woman was and how much emotional maturity she had.

Even after having affirmed him, Khadija went on to take Muhammad peace be upon him to his learned cousin Waraqa bin Naufal bin Asad bin ‘Abdul ‘Uzza, who, during the pre-Islamic Period became a Christian and used to write the writing with Hebrew letters. He was an old man and had lost his eyesight. Khadija said to Waraqa, “Listen to the story of your nephew, O my cousin!” Waraqa asked, “O my nephew! What have you seen?” The prophet then described whatever he had seen. Waraqa said, “This is the same one who keeps the secrets (angel Gabriel) whom Allah had sent to Moses. I wish I were young and could live up to the time when your people would turn you out.” Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) asked, “Will they drive me out?” Waraqa replied in the affirmative and said, “Anyone (man) who came with something similar to what you have brought was treated with hostility; and if I should remain alive till the day when you will be turned out then I would support you strongly.” But after a few days Waraqa died and the Divine Inspiration was also paused for a while. (You can find this narration in sahih Bukhari)

#The First

Khadija was the first to embrace Islam. The first to perform Wudhu and pray. Yahya ibn `Afeef is quoted saying that he once came, during the period of Jahiliyyah (before the advent of Islam), to Mecca to be hosted by ‘Abbas ibn ‘Abd al-Muttalib, one of Muhammad’s uncles mentioned above. “When the sun started rising,” he said, “I saw a man who came out of a place not far from us, faced the Kaaba and started performing his prayers. He hardly started before being joined by a young boy who stood on his right side, then by a woman who stood behind them. When he bowed down, the young boy and the woman bowed, and when he stood up straight, they, too, did likewise. When he prostrated, they, too, prostrated.” He expressed his amazement at that, saying to Abbas: “This is quite strange, O Abbas!”. “Is it, really?” retorted al-Abbas. “Do you know who he is?”, Abbas asked his guest who answered in the negative. “He is Muhammad ibn Abdullah, my nephew. Do you know who the young boy is?” asked he again. “No, indeed,” answered the guest. “He is Ali son of Abu Talib. Do you know who the woman is?” The answer came again in the negative, to which Abbas said, “She is Khadijah bint Khuwaylid, my nephew’s wife.” This incident is included in the books of both Ahmad ibn Hanbal and Al-Tirmidhi, each detailing it in his own Ṣaḥīḥ.

It is for her loyalty and deep faith that she has an elevated status and received greetings from Allah and Jibril. No other woman/wife during the time of the prophet ever got such a special recognition.

Abu Huraira reported that Gabriel came to Allah’s Apostle (ﷺ) and said: “Allah’s Messenger, lo. Khadija is coming to you with a vessel of seasoned food or drink. When she comes to you, offer her greetings from her Lord, the Exalted and Glorious, and on my behalf and give her glad tidings of a palace of jewels in Paradise wherein there is no noise and no toil.” This hadith has been narrated on the authority of Abu Huraira through another chain of transmitters with a slight variation of wording. (Sahih Muslim 2432)

In another narration by Ali bin Abi Talib, may peace be upon him, that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “The best of its women is Khadijah bint Khuwailid, and the best of its women is Mariam bint ‘Imran.”

#Loyalty till the last breath

Then came the time when the Quraish held a confederation hostile to Bani Hashim and Bani Al-Muttalib, all in an attempt to harm the prophet and the Muslims. They all took an oath not to have any business dealings with them nor any sort of inter-marriage, social relations, visits and even verbal contacts until the prophet was given up to them to be killed. This treaty was attached to the wall of Kaabah and thus the two tribes were boycotted. Banu Hashim and Banu Al Muttalib withdrew to a valley on the eastern outskirts of Makkah for a period of three years (7th year to 10th year of Prophet’s mission).It was such a deadly siege and food was very scarce. The Muslims faced great difficulties that they had to eat tree leaves and animal skins. They only survived by the will of Allah through the few non-muslims who still chose to be kind to them and send them food in secret. One of them is the nephew of Khadija, Hakim Ibn Hizam who would smuggle food to his aunt and was once found by Abu Jahl who tried to stop him as well. It was only when Al Bukhtari intervened, did Hakim manage to reach his destination. This was how tricky it was to even get someone to send them food. This was the hardest period for the two tribes and the Muslims.

After the three years, the boycott was dissolved and the two tribes returned to Makkah. During this entire period, Khadija stuck by the prophet and supported him with all that she had financially, emotionally, physically and spiritually. She was without a doubt, the prophet’s biggest support system.

A few months after their return to Makkah (after the boycott), Abu Talib passed away, then Khadija followed. It is believed that the effects of the boycott had affected her immensely and eventually led to her death. It is said the gap between the two deaths was either 3 days or 3 months as per the different narrations. The losses were extremely huge for the prophet and he experienced grief so much so, that year was called ‘The Year of Grief’. These two people were the most important in his life and their departure affected the prophet greatly. Khadija was 65 years old when she died and in the other narration, she was 53 years while the prophet was 50 years old.

#A wife worth all the love

‘A’isha (peace be upon her) reported: Never did I feel jealous of the wives of Allah’s Apostle (ﷺ) but in case of Khadija, although I did no, (have the privilege to) see her. She further added that whenever Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) slaughtered a sheep, he said: Send it to the companions of Khadija I annoyed him one day and said: (It is) Khadija only who always prevails upon your mind. Thereupon Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said: Her love had been nurtured in my heart by Allah Himself. (Sahih Muslim 2435 b) In another narration he would say: he would say, “Khadija was such-and-such, and from her I had children.”

Narrated ‘Aisha (peace be upon her) : Once Hala bint Khuwailid, Khadija’s sister, asked the permission of the Prophet (ﷺ) to enter. On that, the Prophet (ﷺ) remembered the way Khadija used to ask permission, and that upset him. He said, “O Allah! Hala!” So I became jealous and said, “What makes you remember an old woman amongst the old women of Quraish an old woman (with a teethless mouth) of red gums who died long ago, and in whose place Allah has given you somebody better than her?” (Sahih al-Bukhari) Then the prophet peace be upon him responded to her: “No, indeed; He has not compensated me with anyone better than her. She believed in me when all others disbelieved; she held me truthful when others called me a liar; she sheltered me when others abandoned me; she comforted me when others shunned me; and Allah granted me children by her while depriving me of children by other women.” After that Aisha said ‘I will never ever say something negative about Khadija’ and she never did.

Khadija may peace and blessings be upon her gave birth to 6 children: Al Qasim, Zainab, Ruqaiyah, Umm Kulthun, Fatimah and Abdullah (also called Taiyib and Tahir). All their sons died in their childhood and all the daughters apart from Fatimah, died during the lifetime of the prophet. All the daughters witnessed Islam, embraced it and emigrated to Madinah.

Once after the battle of Badr, Zaynab’s husband Abul ‘As bin Al Rabihadn’t yet accepted Islam and was one of the prisoners. Zaynab, the prophet’s daughter then sent some property to ransom her husband, one of which was a necklace of hers which Khadijah had before giving it to her when she married Abul ‘As. When the prophet saw the necklace he was really moved by Khadija’s memory and said to the sahabas: “If you consider that you should free her prisoner for her and return to her what belongs to her, (it will be well).” The prophet requested this to the sahaba because he didn’t want to seem like he was favouring his daughter. The sahaba said yes. The prophet made an agreement with Abul ‘As that he should let Zaynab come to him (in exchange for his release), and the Messenger of Allah sent Zayd ibn Harithah and a man of the Ansar and said: “Wait in the valley of Yajij till Zaynab passes you, then you should accompany her and bring her back.” (The narration can be found in Sunan Abi Dawud 2692). Abul ‘As did accept Islam eventually, several years later. He went to Madina after being separated from his wife that he still loved dearly, accepted Islam and resumed their marriage with Zaynab.

Khadija also had 8 grandchildren: From Fatima and Ali Bin Abi Talib: Hassan , Hussein, Muhsin, Umm Kulthum and Zaynab (named them after her sisters). From Zaynab and Abul ‘As: Umama and Ali. From Ruqayya and Uthman Ibn Affan: Abdullah. After death of Ruqayya, Uthman Ibn Affan married Umm Kulthum but had no children with her.

Khadija was the first wife of the prophet peace be upon him and he never married any other woman until after her death whereby he married Swadah bint Zam’ah.

There is definitely a lot we can learn from Khadija, may Allah be pleased with her, especially on her role as the most supportive and loving wife. May Allah guide us and make us among His most beloved. Ameen.

Note: This is just my small effort in trying to research on this topic in the best of my ability. Kindly pardon me for any mistakes and don’t hesitate to correct me if anything. Stay tuned for the next part of this series on the 4 women of Jannah!


Hadiths from https://sunnah.com/

The Superstars series by sheikh Omar Suleiman: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IKASMwUWV9c

Mothers of the Believers pt.3 | Khadija bint Khuwaylid (pt.1)| Sh. Dr. Yasir Qadhi: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZZcZZGnS6M&t=420s

Mothers of the Believers pt.4 | Khadija bint Khuwaylid (pt.2)| Sh. Dr. Yasir Qadhi: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iRdYlrIwPT8

Mothers of the Believers pt.5 | Khadija bint Khuwaylid (pt.3)| Sh. Dr. Yasir Qadhi: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DXXL3HkX7N8

Islamic Guidance channel: Khadija Bint Al-Khuwaylid [RA]: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D2jVrAlv1x8

The Sealed Nectar by Safi-ur-Rahman Al-Mubarakpuri

To read part 2, click on the following link: https://lubnah.me.ke/my-other-half-part-2/

Assalam aleykum warahmatu llah wabarakatuh 🙂

Had I known there would be a part 3, I would have written it last year in 2019, so that the gap between the letters are equal. The first was in 2015, then 2017, then now :/ The perfectionist me is a bit bothered by that. I also realized that I have the totally wrong title for this letter series. Should have been, ‘to my other 3/4’ because really, whom I’m kidding? I’m just a 1/4 human, so you gotta be 3/4 to complete me. You gotta be the bigger person. Huh, pun intended! 😀

Okay, wait. Let’s rewind a bit. CAN YOU BELIEVE WE’RE IN THE MIDDLE OF A PANDEMIC? It is crazy right?! I hope you are sane though? Hopefully coping okay with all that is happening? I am okay. Alhamdulilah 🙂 I was very alarmed at first. It was too overwhelming seeing everyone panicking and the too much misinformation wasn’t making it any easy. I am better now alhamdulilah. It is the empathetic side of me that is struggling more. There are a lot of emotions being laid out and I absorb everything like a sponge. This in turn makes me anxious sometimes. Anxious because now, people are too anxious. I’m used to being the most anxious person in the room 😀 But this too shall pass, aye?! I am just trying to avoid social media at the moment and too much news. Really hoping things only get better from here. Ameen.

I really hope you’re doing well though; catching dreams, flights and sunsets. I have grown since the last time I wrote to you; emotionally, mentally, spiritually. Physically? Not so much 😀 2020 especially started way too rough, but wasn’t it for everyone? Nonetheless, I’m still me. The same cry baby who wrote the first letter in 2015. I still watch murder documentaries and horror/thriller movies then ask one of my younger sisters to sleep with me because I’m too afraid. I still pace up and down for several minutes before taking a pill because pills give me anxiety of sorts. Sometimes I opt to take 4 tablespoons of baby liquid paracetamol than take the actual pills. I still go to my mum to comb my hair. I still cry when my friends forget about me or when someone raises their voice on me. I still cry in weddings, sometimes more than in funerals. Not the two tears of joy. I cry. Literally, sometimes until I get a flu. I am very weird. Very paradoxical. I am the most dumb & naive, smart person I know. I am also the strongest, most fragile person. Can you imagine I turned 26 today? I am literally a baby. Everyone knows that tears are my forte. My best friend Husna has said she’ll ensure that in my nikah contract I write ‘Don’t be mean to me’ and I want to add, ‘or else I’ll cry’ because really, that should scare you. It’s like dealing with a literal big baby. My other best friend Amina is betting that I’ll have no make up on my wedding not because I wouldn’t have applied but because I’d have cried way too much, people would think it is a forced marriage. You get the picture? 😀

But waiiiit!! About me being a literal baby, FLASH NEWS: I did not cry watching ‘Miracle in cell no 7’ (Watch it if you haven’t!) Can you believe that?!!! I’ve been telling it to everyone and anyone who bothers to listen. Saying it like it is a badge of bravery 😀 Someone said if you watched the ‘Miracle…’ movie and you didn’t cry then you’re an assassin. Well hallo, you’re looking at one 😀 I also didn’t cry when I read ‘The Kite Runner’ or even ‘A Thousand Splendid Suns’. Quite the achievement I tell you. Howeveeerrr, few days after reading these, I had huge breakdowns over the smallest, most stupid reasons. I came to realize, sometimes, that I tend to postpone my crying till further notice; when I get a more sillier reason to cry. Like hit my toe on a door and cry for an hour about it. See? Paradoxical. I also realized my crying is like an art. I’m still trying to figure out my patterns 😀

I’m still terrified of the idea of divorce which in turn makes me terrified of marriage in the first place. The marriages crumbling around us are barely any consolation. For a very anxious person like me, uncertainty is our poison. Yet nonetheless, it makes me dig deeper into myself and be more keen on my choices in this life. Not just about marriage but everything else. I know some people think I am waiting for a fairy tale but trust me, I am very very aware of how reality is. And fairy tale is so far from it. Mwanzo the way I was too invested in Umm Abdullah and Hasanat’s seemingly perfect marriage, and what it turned out to be, mahn! I was too heart-broken I swear and even more sad for their reality *Insert too many tears*. Anyway, I guess such is life.

I have this colleague of mine who when he first read my first letter in 2015, was so excited because he had written something similar on his blog. He then narrated how his wife reacted when they got married and read the letters. She ransacked his entire blog, reading everrrything and asking about every girl that was mentioned on it 😀 They were a seemingly sweet couple. Five years down the line (after the conversation that is), they’re divorced. My heart sank when I heard about it. They’re both good people, but life happens. You can never know what will come your way tomorrow, a week from now or ten years later. It terrifies me how life is so temporary, unpredictable. You can NEVER claim that you have it figured out. Everyone is just stumbling through life and dealing with the snowballs rolling towards them. Throwback to when I was in high school and I’d see people in their mid-twenties, I’d marvel. I always thought ‘they have it figured out.’ The age where one has a job, is newly married and deeply in love, taking on adventures and life is just kicking off. I was so so wrong. I could never be more mistaken in my life. Adulthood is a scam. It is the heftiest slap on the face. Jokes on me 😀 Someone should have prepared me though! ( By the way, my colleague is happily remarried alhamdulilah. May Allah protect his marriage, bless it and make it long-lasting.ameen.)

So anyway, I met this lady, more than 10 years older than me. She is like the splitting image of me but personality wise. Very sensitive, very anxious, very compassionate, a very good writer, tiny like me…we even have similar health issues. Mind-blowing I tell you. It is almost like I met myself in the future. And you know, I see her seemingly happy in her marriage, with her grown children mashallah; they’re so adorable I could cry…Here’s the catch though; she is in a polygamous marriage!! When she told me about it I was like ‘whaaaatttt!! Hooooowww!!’ Cause I can’t imagine myself in one honestly I’d die so please don’t get ideas 😀 What’s even harder, is that she is the first wife! Her response was simply, ‘My husband is a good man’ and my heart melted at how she said it. She did admit it was tough but they made it through. I am still A.M.A.Z.E.D. mashallah mashallah may Allah keep blessing their marriage. Ameen. It gives me hope though; that people like me can be happy after all despite all the noise in the head.

To be honest, I am not where I want to be spiritually. I struggle. A lot. Mostly because of the anxiety. It makes you seek control. You have this desperate need to be the captain of the ship and control the direction of the wind too. Which is impossible. I am still learning and unlearning so many things. I am accepting of how too flawed I am. I am accepting that I still have a lot to work on on myself. I had this classmate in university, whom I really look up to. He was always so laid back. So much so, you’d think he’s entirely unbothered. But he wasn’t. He just never allowed matters to get to his skin. Whether it was the pressure from the lecturers and university projects, whether it was people mocking him, whether it was things not going as planned. A project that I would stress about for an entire month, he would plan himself keenly and do it in one week. No, don’t be mistaken. This wasn’t just someone who was playing around. This was someone who knew exactly how much importance to give any matter because, well, he was always top in class and he was the only other person who got first class honors besides me in our lot.

When I ponder over how I dealt with my university studies versus how he did, it was the extreme opposite. I would get panic attacks or even cry right before an exam sometimes. Yet he would never let anything disturb his peace of mind. Throughout the years in the same class, I never ever heard him complain about his personal life. He would complain about the lecturers or the challenges (just the usual, small stuff) but never about his personal life. I doubt anyone in our class knew much about his life. After graduation, while the rest of us were worried and stressing over getting jobs, you know what he was up to? Walking around his neighbourhood, taking brilliant images and editing them. When anyone would ask him how he could afford to be so relaxed, he would say, ‘I already sent my CVs. Now I can only wait.’ He did eventually get a job, a good one mashallah and it was as if he always knew he’d get it.

During this quarantine period, my mate is busy making happy and silly videos, recreating images and making memes despite being far from his family. As an avid complainer and a highly sensitive person, I learnt a lot about choosing my battles just from observing him. I know for sure he too has problems of his own, but he always had that utmost belief and optimism in life. I always yearned for that kind of peace (May Allah keep blessing him and grant him tranquility always. ameen). I still yearn for that kind of peace. I think if I master the art of ‘choosing battles’ then i’ll be way ahead in life. That is the goal.

I’m learning a lot just by observing people to be honest. That kind of education no one will ever teach you. There’s always something to learn from every single human being, even if not a positive thing, you learn about a negative thing to avoid doing. So yes, I’m still feeding on human stories. They shape me greatly and have been a huge part of my growth. I’m also still studying alhamdulilah (yes, neeerddd! 😀 )

Imagine Ramadhan is just a few days away. I’m deeply sad about the world right now. It will be a very strange Ramadhan while people in lock-down. Imagine watching taraweh in empty Makkah and Madina 🙁 I hope this pandemic ends soon wallahy. So many people are affected. So many people are struggling. So I’m praying that by eid all this will be over, at least people can have some part of ramadhan back in the masjid, may He help us all and protect us. Ameen. Try to make the best out of this Ramadhan as I strive to do as well biidhnillah. Also, you should try watch ‘Qalby Etmaan’ on youtube this Ramadhan cause Ghayth is absolutely my hero when it comes to charity and he inspires me too much *I am still crying*. Perhaps he’d inspire you too!

Do include me in your prayers please, 26 looks scary to be honest. But turning one year older, I am also very very grateful. For my amazing parents, for my dear family, for my very lovely friends, for the blessings from Allah. I never take these things for granted. And the more I grow up, the more I appreciate their presence and all the love. Alhamdulilah ala kul hal. Hoping you join the team soon enough 😉 Ameen. About that, by the way, you are wasting such an opportune moment because with this quarantine, it is the best time to do a nikah. We’d just have gone to the kadhi and skipped all that chaos of the normal weddings 😀 But oh well, everything happens at its time I guess.

Just a disclaimer as we wind up, I sought the permission of the above people mentioned before writing about them, so don’t you assume I’m a snitch 😀

I am hoping there won’t be a part 4 because I am getting too old and hopefully you’d be around before I ever have to. If I’m writing another letter then it should be to my husband 😀 In shaa Allah. Stay safe wherever you are.

Till we meet in shaa Allah 🙂

P.S I now realize this was too long. It’s been three years anyway, we’re compensating 😀

Sending you Love and Light,

Lubnah with an ‘H’.


Thank you for reading 🙂 Kindly subscribe and stay tuned for the Ramadhan special edition in shaa Allah. I am also starting a Ramadhan fundraising in shaa Allah to support a family of 5 , who are deeply affected by the corona virus. The father is in the transport business which is now in pause till after corona. Ramadhan is coming, and they have bills to pay with no other way to earn their livelihood. Kindly do support me in this project as well by sending to my mpesa: 0704 731 560 (Lubnah Said). I love you all for the sake of Allah. Please take care wherever you are!

Most people underestimate the power of words and language in our daily lives and how it eventually influences the path we tread on. In the heat of a moment, sometimes we say what we don’t mean, and think that ‘sorry’ will suffice at the end of the day. But what if, just what if, we decided to be more careful with what and how we speak in the first place? How can we still show love and compassion towards our partners and family during a conflict?

Doctor Gottman, an American psychological researcher and clinician who did extensive work over four decades on divorce prediction and marital stability, founded ‘The Love Lab’. He is known for his 90% accuracy in predicting divorce and has provided us with four primary predictors of divorce called ‘ Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse‘. These four are: criticism, contempt, defensiveness and stonewalling.  

Criticism: When someone criticizes their partner, it implies that something is wrong with them or that you are attacking their character. In this case, one focuses on winning the argument or proving the partner wrong. For example, when you say, ‘You never do this…’, ‘Why are you like this…’, ‘You’re always….’, the spouse feels attacked and elicits a defensive response. The right way is to make a complaint about your spouse’s behaviour and not attack their personality. For example, when X happened, I felt Y, and I need Z.

Contempt: This is the worst predictor of divorce. Contempt is any statement of nonverbal behavior that puts you on a higher ground than your partner. This could be mocking your partner, calling him/her names, hostile humour, hurtful sarcasm etc. It attacks your spouse’s sense of self. It is also intended to put down or emotionally abuse or manipulate him or her. Instead, the couple should build a culture of respect, appreciation, tolerance and kindness in the relationship.

Defensiveness: This is an attempt to defend yourself from a perceived attack with a countercomplaint. Another way is to act like a victim or whine. This can look like making excuses (e.g., external circumstances beyond your control forced you to act in a certain way). Saying things like “It’s not my fault,” or “I didn’t …” can also be cross-complaining, such as meeting your partner’s complaint or criticism with a complaint of your own or ignoring what your partner said. Couples are expected to take a moment, slow down and listen attentively to what their partner is saying without interrupting them. The point is: have conscious communication where you are both trying to understand what the other is saying and choosing the right way to respond.

Stonewalling: The silent treatment. Storming out. Shutting down. Changing the subject. Complete withdrawal from communication. All these are acts of stonewalling. It is a strategy we use to avoid conflict. This might be an, albeit unsuccessful, attempt to calm oneself when overwhelmed. However, a better way to deal with such situations is to learn to identify the signs that you or your partner is starting to feel emotionally overwhelmed. It’s a good idea to verbalize that you feel overwhelmed. You can both agree to take a break and that the conversation will resume when you are both calmer.

Apart from these predictors of divorce or separation, there are some patterns or behaviour that sometimes cause further conflict without being fully aware of it.

We are all wired differently, right? Different backgrounds, different personalities, different cultures, races, behaviours etc. As such, it is normal that we experience life and all our emotions differently. It will be quite illogical to think that our way of thinking or living is the ONLY right way to do it. This will just cause conflict and misunderstandings. As such, couples are advised to take time and understand each other’s love languages and work towards compromise rather than conflict.

Below are some main differences among couples and how they can reach a middle ground and understanding.

1. Independence 1st vs Togetherness 1st

Some people are more comfortable and relaxed working alone or being alone rather than interacting with others. One spouse could be more family oriented than the other. Perhaps one involves their parents/siblings in their lives while others prefer dealing with their issues by themselves as a couple.

Someone who values independence first might get irritated or frustrated when they do not get enough alone time. Or when a conflict arises, they NEED personal space. Here it is not a matter of wanting anymore, it is a NEED. That means, that if they don’t get their personal space ASAP, it will make them more anxious and stressed.

Togetherness first, needs more interaction with others and may become anxious when the partner is not readily available. They always seek comfort. They NEED to know that everything is okay. They need that emotional contact to relax, and the lack of it might cause further anxiousness.

When conflict arises, these two may get upset when their coping mechanism is not met by their partner.

Independence-First talking to Togetherness-first: “You are too needy! I can’t read your mind just tell me what you want!”

“You are selfish for always wanting attention”

Togetherness-First talking to Independence-first: “You just run off when we have to talk about something important!” 

“This doesn’t feel like a relationship, we are not a team!” 

“You are selfish for only caring about yourself!”

2. Slow to Upset vs. Readily Upset

Slow to upset people get anxious when there is conflict. They would rather remain silent to avoid further escalation of conflict. They stay calm to control the situation. They feel better about diffusing their upset feelings.

Readily upset need to speak up right away when something isn’t right. They feel that conflict and arguments are normal and for them, speaking up about their upset feelings helps them calm down.

Slow to upset talking to readily upset: “You throw temper tantrums anytime you don’t get something your way.” 

“Nothing is ever good enough for you, you are just always negative.”

Readily Upset talking to slow-upset: “You just cover up your true feelings just to avoid conflict.” 

“You just want to pretend like everything is okay.”

3. Problem Solving 1st vs. Understanding 1st

Problem-solving 1st people seek to deal with the situation by finding an appropriate plan for it. They don’t seek sympathy or validation from their partner. They don’t see the point in discussing feelings over what happened. They think, ‘Something wrong has happened, what do we do next?’

Understanding 1st feels instantly better when they get a little understanding from their partner. They feel soothed when they get a little support and compassion. For such people, acknowledging their emotions or the intentions underlying their actions is important. What Type of understanding is understanding first people looking for? It’s a matter of timing, it is not that they don’t want a solution, it is just they feel understanding comes first, then looking for a solution.

Problem-Solving talking to Understanding-first: “You just want to complain but never do anything to make things better” 

“You just want to be upset! Maybe you just like feeling miserable”

Understanding-First to Problem-solving first: “You don’t care how I feel, you just want to pretend as if nothing happened.”

“You just want to sweep your feelings under the rug.

What then can couples do to ensure more understanding?

1. Write down which core difference you are and which your partner is

2. Think of a specific time where this caused a conflict between you and your spouse.

3. Accept the idea that both of you have legitimate ways of relaxing

4. Stretch your comfort levels a bit so may give and take in a way where each of you gets your needs at least partially met. Write down what you can say and do to find a compromise.

No one can say one way of navigating life is better or more correct than the other. We are all different. The important thing is to understand the other person’s view and stand. You can’t always expect your spouse to cross over to your sideline. Sometimes, according to the situation, you give them the space they need and sometimes, they give you the attention you need. They say love isn’t always what makes marriages stronger…it is the understanding, compromises, compassion, mercy and forgiveness. Take the time to learn how your partner functions and copes during conflict. Be kind. Be understanding. Be compassionate. There has never been a shortcut to a successful marriage, has there?

Despite this being mostly about couples and marriage, this information is useful for any other kind of relationship or interaction as well!


  1. Notes by Dr Usman Mughni, MS, LMFTA, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist.
  2. https://www.verywellmind.com/four-scientific-predictors-of-divorce-4045691
  3. https://psychcentral.com/blog/4-warning-signs-marriage-therapists-use-to-predict-divorce/

You may read part 4 at: https://lubnah.me.ke/100-hadiths-on-women-part-4/

E. MARRIAGE         كتاب النكاح  

1.Teasing co-wife with falsehood

Narrated Asma: Some lady said, “O Allah’s Messenger My husband has another wife, so it is sinful of me to claim that he has given me what he has not given me (in order to tease her)?” Allah’s Messenger(ﷺ) said, The one who pretends that he has been given what he has not been given, is just like the (false) one who wears two garments of falsehood.” 

عَنْ أسْمَاَء، عَنِ النبِيِ  صلى الله عليه وسلم. حدَثنِي محَمَُّد بنُ اْلمُثنى، حََّدَثنا يحْيى، عنْ هِشا مٍ، حََّدَثتنِي فَاطِمَُة، عَنْ أسْمَاَء، أن اْمرَأة، قاَلتْ يا رَسوَل اَّلِلّ إَِّن لي ضَرًَّة، فهلْ عََلىَّ جُناحٌ إِْن تشَبَّعْتُ مِنْ زَوْجِي غَيرَ اَّلِذي يعْطِينِي فقاَل رَسُوُل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم  ” اْلمُتَشَبِ عُ بِمَا  لمْ يعْطَ كلَابِسِ ثوَْبىْ زُورٍ “. Sahih al-Bukhari 5219 

 2. A woman whose husband is absent 

Fadala ibn ‘Ubayd reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “Do not ask about three: a man who parts company with the community, rebels the ruler and dies while he is a still a rebel. Do not ask about him. Or a slave or slavegirl who runs away from his master. Or a woman whose husband is absent and who has sufficient provision and then displays her adornments to strangers and mixes freely. Do not ask about three: a man who contends with Allah regarding His cloak. His cloak is pride and His wrapper is His might. Also a man who doubts the command of Allah. and someone who despairs of Allah’s mercy.” 

 عَنْ فضَاَلَة بنِ عُبيد، عَنِ النبِيِ  صلى الله عليه وسلم قَاَ ل: ثلَاَثٌة لَا يسْأل عَنه مْ: رَجُلٌ فَارَقَ اْلجمَاعََة وَعَصَى إَِماَمُه فمَاتَ عَاصِيا، فلَا تسْأل عنُْه، وَأََمٌة أَوْ عَبد أَبِقَ مِنْ سَي دهِ، وَاْمر أة غَابَ زَوْجها، وَكفاَها مؤُوَنة الُّدْنيا فتبرَّجَتْ وََتمَرَّجَتْ بعَْدُ ه. وََثلَاَثٌة لَا يسأَُل عَنه مْ: رَجُلٌ نازَعَ اَّلَلّ رَِداَءُه، فإَّن رَِداَءُه اْلكِبْرَِياُء، وَإزَارَُه عِزَُّه، وَرَجُلٌ شَكَّ فِي أمرِ الِله، وَالقُنُوطُ مِنْ رَحمَةِ  الِله. Grade : Sahih (Al-Albani)  

3. A man (even male in-laws) should not stay with a woman in seclusion 

Narrated `Uqba bin ‘Amir: Allah’s Messenger said, “Beware of entering upon the ladies.” A man from the Ansar said, “Allah’s Apostle! What about Al-Hamu the in-laws of the wife (the brothers of her husband or his nephews etc.)?” The Prophetreplied: The in-laws of the wife are death itself.  

 عَنْ عُقبة بنِ عَامِرٍ، أن رَسُوَل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَاَل ” إَِّياكُ مْ وَالُّدخُوَل عََلى النِ ساِء “. فقَاَل رَجُلٌ مِنَ الَأْنصَارِ يا رَسُوَل اَّلِلّ أفَرَأيتَ اْلحمْ وَ. قاَل ” اْلحَموُ اْلمَوْتُ “. Sahih al-Bukhari 5232

  4. Describing another woman to her husband 

Narrated `Abdullah bin Mas`ud: The Prophet(ﷺ) said, “A woman should not look at or touch another woman to describe her to her husband in such a way as if he was actually looking at her.”  

 عَنْ عَبد اَّلِلّ بنِ مسْعُوٍد ـ رضى الله عنه ـ قَاَل قَاَل النبِيُّ صلى الله عليه وسلم  ” لَا تبَاشِرِ اْلمَرْأَُة اْلمَرْأة فتنعَتها لزَوْجها، كأنُه ينْظرُ إَِليَْها “. Sahih al-Bukhari 5240 

 5. Proposing to a decent man 

Narrated Thabit: that he heard Anas saying, “A woman came to the Prophet(ﷺ) offering herself to him in marriage, saying, “Have you got any interest in me (i.e. would you like to marry me?)” Anas’s daughter said, “How shameless that woman was!” On that Anas said, “She is better than you, for she presented herself to Allah’s Messenger(ﷺ) ( for marriage). 

 حََّدَثنا مسََّدٌد، حََّدَثنا مرْحُومٌ، سَمِعْتُ ثابِتًا، أََّنه سَمِعَ أََنسًا ـ رضى الله عنه ـ يقوُل جَاَءتِ اْمرَأة إَِلى النبِيِ  صلى الله عليه وسلم تعْرِضُ عََليهِ نفسها فقاَلتْ هلْ لكَ حَاجٌَة فِيَّ فقاَلتِ اْبنته ما أقلَّ حيَاَءَها. فقاَل هِيَ خَيْرٌ مِنكِ، عَرَضَتْ عََلى رَسُولِ اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم نفسََها. Sahih al-Bukhari 6123  

6.   Choice in marriage 

Narrated Abdullah ibn Abbas: A virgin came to the Prophet(ﷺ) and mentioned that her father had married her against her will, so the Prophet(ﷺ) allowed her to exercise her choice.   

عَنِ اْبنِ عَباسٍ، أن جَارَِيًة، بِكرًا أتتِ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فذكرَتْ أن أباَها زَوَّجها وَهِيَ كارَِهٌة فَخيرََها النبِيُّ صلى الله عليه وسلم . Sahih (Al-Albani)  

7. Asking for divorce without a good reason 

Narrated Thawban: The Prophet(ﷺ) said: If any woman asks her husband for divorce without some strong reason, the odour of Paradise will be forbidden to her.   

عَنْ ثوَْباَن، قاَل قاَل رَسُوُل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم  ” أيمَا اْمرَأةٍ سَألتْ زَوْجََها طلَاقًا فِي غيْرِ ما بأْسٍ  فحَرَامٌ عليَْها رَائِحة اْلجَنةِ  ” .Sahih (Al-Albani) SunanAbiDawud 2226 

8. Woman taking care of in-laws 

Narrated Jabir bin `Abdullah: My father died and left seven or nine girls and I married a matron. Allah’s Messenger(ﷺ) said to me, “O Jabir! Have you married?” I said, “Yes.” He said, “A virgin or a matron?” I replied, “A matron.” he said, “Why not a virgin, so that you might play with her and she with you, and you might amuse her and she amuse you.” I said, ” `Abdullah (my father) died and left girls, and I dislike to marry a girl like them, so I married a lady (matron) so that she may look after them.” On that he said, “May Allah bless you,” or “That is good.”   

عَنْ جَابِرِ بنِ عَبد اَّلِلّ ـ رضى الله عنهما ـ قاَل هَلكَ أَبِي وََترَكَ سَبعَ بناتٍ أوْ تِسْعَ بنَاتٍ ف تَزَوَّجتُ اْمرَأًَة ثيِ با فقاَل لي رَسُوُل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم ” تزَوَّجْتَ يا جَابِرُ “. فقلتُ نعَ مْ. فقاَل ” بِكْرًا أَمْ ثيِ با “. قُْلتُ بلْ ثي با. قاَل ” فهلَّا جَارَِيًة تلَاعِبَُها وَُتلاعِبكَ،  وَُتضَاحكها وَُتضَاحككَ “. قاَل فقُْلتُ لُه إَِّن عبَْد اَّلِلّ هَلكَ وََترَكَ بناتٍ، وَإِ نِي كرِْهتُ أن أجِيئَُهنَّ بِمِثْلِهِنَّ، فَتزَوَّجْتُ اْمرَأة تقومُ عََليهِنَّ وَُتصْلِحُُهنَّ . فقَاَل ” بارَكَ اَّلُلّ لكَ “.  أَوْ قاَل خَيرًا. Sahih al-Bukhari 5367  

9. If a man does not provide for his family

Narrated `Aisha: Hind (bint `Utba) said to the Prophet(ﷺ) ” Abu Sufyan is a miserly man and I need to take some money of his wealth.” The Prophet(ﷺ) said, “Take reasonably what is sufficient for you and your children ”  

، عَنْ عَائِشََة ـ رضى الله عنها ـ أن هِنَْد، قاَلتْ للنبِيِ  صلى الله عليه وسلم إَِّن أبا سُفيَاَن رَجلٌ شحِيحٌ، فَأَحْتاجُ أَْن آخَُذ مِنْ ماِلهِ . قاَل  ” خُِذي ما يكْفِيكِ  ووََلدكِ بِاْلمَعْرُوفِ “. Sahih al-Bukhari 7180  

10. Asking permission for marriage

It was narrated from Ibn ‘Abbas that the Messenger of Allah said: “A previously married woman has more right to decide about herself (with regard to marriage) than her guardian, and a virgin should be asked for permission with regard to marriage, and her permission is her silence.” 

 عَنِ اْبنِ عَباسٍ، أن رَسُوَل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَاَل  ” الَأ يِمُ أحَقُّ بِنفسَِها مِنْ وَِلي ها وَاْلبِكْرُ تسْتَأْذ ن فِي نفسَِها وَإِذُْنَها صُمَاُتَها ” .  Sahih (Darussalam)   Sunan an-Nasa’i 3260  

11. Taking good care of daughters 

Aishah (May Allah be pleased with her) reported:  The Messenger of Allah said, “He who is involved (in the responsibility) of (bringing up) daughters, and he is benevolent towards them, they would become protection for him against Hell-fire”.

 “من ابتلي من هذه البنات بشيء فأحسن إليهن كن له سترًا من النار” ))متفق عليه((. [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].  

12. Voicing injustice on women when against the teachings of Islam. 

It was narrated from Ibn Buraidah that: his father said: “A girl came to the Prophet and said: ‘My father married me to his brother’s son so that he might raise his status thereby.’ The Prophet gave her the choice, and she said: ‘I approve of what my father did, but I wanted women to know that their fathers have no right to do that.’ ”  

 عَنِ اْبنِ برَْيَدَة، عَنْ أبِيهِ، قاَل جاَءتْ فتَاٌة إلى النَّبِيِ  ـ صلى الله عليه وسلم ـ فقاَلتْ إَِّن أَبِي زَوَّجَنِي اْبنَ أخيهِ ليرْفعَ بِي خَسِيسَته . قاَل فَجعَلَ الَأْمرَ إَِليها . فَقاَلتْ قد أجَزْتُ ما صَنَعَ أبِي وََلكِنْ أَرَْدتُ أَْن تعلمَ النِ سَاُء أن ليسَ إَِلى الآَباِء مِنَ الَأْمرِ شىء . Sahih (Darussalam) Sunan Ibn Majah 1874  

13. The working of a lady in her husband’s house 

Narrated `Ali: Fatima went to the Prophet (ﷺ)complaining about the bad effect of the stone hand-mill on her hand. She heard that the Prophet (ﷺ)had received a few slave girls. But (when she came there) she did not find him, so she mentioned her problem to `Aisha. When the Prophet (ﷺ))came, `Aisha informed him about that. `Ali added, “So the Prophet ( )ﷺcame to us when we had gone to bed. We wanted to get up (on his arrival) but he said, ‘Stay where you are.” Then he came and sat between me and her and I felt the coldness of his feet on my `Abdomen. He said, “Shall I direct you to something better than what you have requested? When you go to bed say ‘Subhan Allah’ thirtythree times, ‘Al hamduli l-lah’ thirty three times, and Allahu Akbar’ thirty four times, for that is better for you than a servant.” 

 حََّدَثنا عَلِيٌّ، أن فاطِمة ـ عََليهِمَا السلَامُ ـ أََتتِ النبيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم تشْكو إليهِ ما تْلقى فِي يدَها مِنَ الرَّحَى، وََبَلغََها أنُه جَاَءه رَقِيقٌ فلمْ تصاِدفه، فََذكرتْ ذَِلكَ لعَائِشََة، فلمَّا جَاَء أخْبرَْتُه عائِشَُة ـ قَ اَل ـ فَجَاَءَنا وَقد أخَْذنا مضَاجعَنا، فََذهبْنَا نقومُ فَقَاَل ” عََلى مكانِكمَا “. فجَاَء فقَعََد بيْنِي وََبيْنََها حتى وَجدتُ برد قدَميهِ عََلى بطْني فقَاَل ” ألَا أدُّلكُما عََلى خيرٍ مِمَّا سَألتمَا، إِ ذَا أخَْذتما مضَاجِعَكُمَا ـ أوْ أَوَْيتما إَِلى فِرَاشِكمَا ـ فسَبِ حَا ثلَاًثا وََثلَاثِينَ، وَاحمََدا ثلاثا وََثلَاثِينَ، وَكبِ رَا أرَْبعًا وثلَاثِينَ، فهوَ خيْرٌ لكما منْ خَاِدمٍ “.  Sahih al-Bukhari 5361  

14. Supporting your dependants. 

Narrated Abu Huraira: Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ)said, “The best alms is that which you give when you are rich, and you should start first to support your dependants.”  

عَن أبِي هرَْيرََة،أ  ن رَسُول اَّ للّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَاَل   ” خَيرُال صََّدق ةِ ماكان عَن ظَْهرِ  غِنًى، وَاْبَدأْ  بِمن تعُوُ ل  .”Sahih al-Bukhari 5356  

15. To provide one’s family with food sufficient  in advance

Narrated `Umar: The Prophet (ﷺ)used to sell the dates of the garden of Bani An-Nadir and store for his family so much food as would cover their needs for a whole year.  

عَنْ عُمَرَـ رض ىالله عنه ـ أ ن النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم كَاَن يبِيعُ نخْلَ بنِي النضِيرِ،وََيحبِسُ لَأْهلِهِ قُوتَ سَنتِهِمْ . Sahih al-Bukhari 5357 

16. Lying about the father of your child  

“Then the Verse of Li’an was revealed, the Messenger of Allah ()ﷺ   said: ‘Any woman who attributed her child to people to whom he does not belong, then she has no relation to (the religion of) Allah, and she will never enter Paradise, and any man who rejects his child, while he recognizes him, Allah will screen Himself from him on the Day of Resurrection and disgrace him before the witnesses.’”  

 عَنْ أبِي هرَْيرََة، قاَل لمَّا نزََلتْ آَيُة ال لِ عَانِ قَاَل رَسوُل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم  ” أَُّيمَا اْمرَأَةٍ أَْلحَقَتْ بِقَوْمٍ منْ ليسَ مِنهمْ فليسَتْ مِنَ اَّلِلّ فِي شىٍْء وََلنْ يْدخَِلها جَنته وَأيمَا رَجُلٍ أنكرَ وََلَدُه وَقَْد عرَفه احْتجَبَ اَّلُلّ مِنه  يوْمَ اْلقِياَمةِ وَفضحه على رُُءوسِ الَأشَْهاِد ” . Grade: Hasan (Darussalam)  

17. Regarding dowry

It was narrated that: Abu Ajfa As-Sulami said: “Umar bin Khattab said: ‘Do not go to extremes with regard to the dowries of women, for if that were a sign of honor and dignity in this world or a sign of Taqwa before Allah, then Muhammad ()ﷺ   would have done that before you. But he did not give any of his wives and none of his daughters were given more than twelve uqiyyah. A man may increase dowry until he feels resentment against her and says: “You cost me everything I own,” or, “You caused me a great deal of hardship.”’” (Hassan) – uqiyyah is 40 dirham, total 480 dirham 

 عَنْ أبِي اْلعَجْفاِء السَُّلمِيِ ، قاَل قَاَل عمَرُ بنُ اْلخَطَّابِ لَا تغَاُلوا صََداقَ النِ سَاِء فإَّنَها لوْ كاَنتْ مكْرَُمة فِي الُّدْنيا أوْ تقوًى عِند اَّلِلّ كَاَن أوْلَاكُمْ وَأحقكُمْ بَِها محَمٌَّد ـ صلى الله عليه وسلم ـ ما أَصدقَ اْمرَأًَة مِنْ نِسَائِهِ وَلَا أصِْدقَتِ اْمرَأة مِنْ بنَاتِهِ أكْثَرَ مِنِ اْثنتىْ عَشْرََة أوقِية وَإَِّن الرَّجُلَ ليثقِ لُ صدقة اْمرَأَتِهِ حَتى يكُوَن لَها عََداوٌَة فِي نفسِهِ وََيقُوُل قد كَلِفتُ إَِليكِ عََلقَ اْلقِرَْبةِ أوْ عَرَقَ اْلقِرَْبةِ . وَكنْتُ رَجلًا عرَبِيًّا موََّلدا ما أدرِي ما عََلقُ اْلقِرَْبةِ أوْ عَرَقُ اْلقِرَْبةِ . Grade: Sahih (Darussalam)  

18.   Causing another woman’s divorce

Narrated Abu Huraira: Allah’s Messenger ()ﷺ   forbade the selling of things by a town dweller on behalf of a desert dweller; and similarly Najsh was forbidden. And one should not urge somebody to return the goods to the seller so as to sell him his own goods; nor should one demand the hand of a girl who has already been engaged to someone else; and a woman should not try to cause some other woman to be divorced in order to take her place. Sahih al-Bukhari 2140  

عَنْ أَبِي هرَْيرََة ـ رضى الله عنه ـ قاَل نَهى رَسوُل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم أ ن يبِيعَ حَاضِرٌ لبَاٍد، وَلَا تنَاجَشُوا، وَلَا يبِيعُ الرَّجُلُ عََلى بيْعِ أَخِيهِ وَلَا يخْطُبُ عََلى خطْبةِ أخيهِ، وَلَا تسْأل اْلمَرْأَُة طلَاقَ أختَِها لتكفَأَ ما فِي إَِنائَِها

19.   Woman, a guardian of the house and children

Narrated `Abdullah: Allah’s Messenger ()ﷺ   said, “Everyone of you is a guardian and is responsible for his charges. The ruler who has authority over people, is a guardian and is responsible for them, a man is a guardian of his family and is responsible for them; a woman is a guardian of her husband’s house and children and is responsible for them; a slave (‘Abu ) is a guardian of his master’s property and is responsible for it; so all of you are guardians and are responsible for your charges.” Sahih al-Bukhari 2554 

 عَنْ عَبد اَّلِلّ ـ رضى الله عنه ـ أن رَسوَل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قاَل   كلكُمْ رَاعٍ فمَسْئوٌل عنْ رَعِيَّتِهِ، فالأمِيرُ اَّلذي عََلى الناسِ رَاعٍ وَْهوَ مسْئوٌل عنُْهمْ، وَالرَّجُلُ رَاعٍ عََلى أهلِ بيتِهِ وَْهوَ  مسْئُوٌل عَنهمْ، وَاْلمَرْأَُة رَاعِية عََلى بيتِ بعْلَِها وَوََلِدهِ وَْهىَ مسْئُوَلٌة عنُْهمْ، وَاْلعَبد رَاعٍ عََلى مالِ سَي دهِ وَْهوَ مسْئوٌل عَنُْه، ألَا فكُُّلكمْ رَاعٍ وَكُُّلكمْ مسْئوٌل عَنْ رَعِيتِهِ .   

20. Being in eddah 

It was narrated that Umm ‘Atiyyah said: “The Messenger of Allah said: ‘No woman should mourn for anyone who dies for more than three days, except for a husband, for whom she should mourn for four months and ten days. She should not wear garments that are dyed or patterned, or put on kohl or comb her hair, and she should not put on any perfume except when purifying herself after her period, when she may use a little of Qust or Azfar.'” Sahih (Darussalam) Sunan an-Nasa’i 3534 

عَنْ أمِ  عَطِية، قاَلتْ قاَل رَسُوُل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم : لَا تحد اْمرَأة عََلى مي تٍ فوْقَ ثلَاثٍ إِلَّا على زَوْجٍ فَِإَّنَها تحد عََليهِ أرَْبعََة أشُْهرٍ وَعشرًا وَلَا تْلبَسُ ثوًْبا مصْبوغًا وَلَا ثوْبَ عَصْبٍ وَلَا تكتحلُ وَلَا تمْتَشِطُ وَلَا تمسُّ طِيبا إِلَّا عِند طُْه رَِها حينَ تطُْهرُ نبًَذا مِنْ قُسطٍ وَأَظْفَارٍ   .   

21. Prohibition of Mut’ah (Temporary marriage) 

Sabra al-Juhani reported on the authority of his father that while he was with Allah’s Messenger ()ﷺ   he said: O people, I had permitted you to contract temporary marriage with women, but Allah has forbidden it (now) until the Day of Resurrection. So he who has any (woman with this type of marriage contract) he should let her off, and do not take back anything you have given to them (as dower).   Sahih Muslim 1406 d

حََّدَثنِي الرَّبِيعُ بنُ سَبرََة اْلجَُهنِيُّ، أََّن أََباُه، حََّدَثه أََّنُه، كاَن معَ رَسُولِ اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فقاَل  يا أَُّيَها الناسُ إِ نِي قد كنتُ أذْنتُ لكُمْ فِي الِاستِمتاعِ مِنَ النِ سَاِء وَإَِّن اَّلَلّ قد ح رَّمَ ذَِلكَ إَِلى يوْمِ اْلقِيَاَمةِ فَمنْ كَاَن عِندُه مِنهنَّ شَىء فليخَلِ  سَبِيَله وَلَا تأخذوا مِما آَتيتمُوُهنَّ شَيْئا”  .   

22. Consultation and permission before marriage 

Abu Huraira (Allah be pleased with him) reported Allah’s Messenger ()ﷺ   as having said: A woman without a husband (or divorced or a widow) must not be married until she is consulted, and a virgin must not be married until her permission is sought. They asked the Prophet of Allah ()ﷺ  : How her (virgin’s) consent can be solicited? He (the Holy Prophet) said: That she keeps silence. Sahih Muslim 1419 a  

حََّدثنا أبو هرَْيرََة، أن رَسُوَل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَاَل  لَا تنكحُ الَأ يِمُ حَتى تسْتأمرَ وَلَا تنْكَحُ اْلبِكرُ حَتَّى تسْتأذََ ن ” . قَاُلوا يا رَسُوَل اَّلِلّ وَكَيْفَ إِذُْنَها قَاَل ” أَْن تسْكتَ ” 

 23. Permission to do your day to day activities while on eddah

Jabir b. ‘Abdullah (Allah be pleased with them) reported: My maternal aunt was divorced, and she intended to pluck her dates. A person scolded her for having come out (during the period of ‘Idda). She came to Allah’s Prophet ( .)ﷺand he said: Certainly you can pluck (dates) from your palm trees, for perhaps you may give charity or do an act of kindness. Sahih Muslim 1483  

جَابِرَ بنَ عَبد اَّلِلّ، يقوُل طُ لِقتْ خَاَلتِي فَأَرَاَدتْ أَْن تجَُّد نخَْلَها فزَجَرََها رَجُلٌ أن تخْرُجَ فَأََتتِ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فقاَل  بَلى فجُ دي نخَْلكِ فإَّنكِ عسى أَْن تصََّدقِي أوْ تفعَلِي معْرُوفا ”  

24. Observing eddah  

Umm ‘Atiyya (‘Allah be pleased with her) said: We were forbidden to observe mourning for the dead beyond three days except in the case of husband (where it is permissible) for four months and ten days, and (that during this period) we should neither use collyrium nor touch perfume, nor wear dyed clothes, but concession was given to a woman when one of us was purified of our courses to make use of a little incense or scent. Sahih Muslim 938 e 

 عَنْ أمِ  عَطِيََّة، قاَلتْ كنا ننهى أَْن نحَِّد على ميِ تٍ فَوْقَ ثلَاثٍ إِلَّا عََلى زَوْجٍ أرَْب عََة أشُْهرٍ وَعشرًا وَلَا نكْتَحلُ وَلَا نتَطَيبُ وَلَا نْلبسُ ثوًْبا مصْبوغًا وَقَْد رُخِ صَ لْلمَرْأَةِ فِي طُْهرَِها إِذَا اغْتسََلتْ إِحَْداَنا مِنْ محِيضَِها فِي نبذةٍ مِنْ قُسطٍ وَأظْفارٍ .   

25. Being married is better than being divorced

It was narrated that ‘Aishah said: “This Verse ‘And making peace is better.’ Was revealed concerning a man who had been married to a woman for a long time, and she had given birth to his children and he wanted to exchange her (for a new wife). She agreed that he would stay with her (the new wife) and would not give her (the first wife) a share of his time. (i.e.) not spend the nights with her).” Sahih (Darussalam) Arabic : Book 9, Hadith 2050 Sunan Ibn Majah 

عَنْ عَائِشََة، . أنَها قاَل تْ نزََلتْ هذهِ الآَيُة   }وَالصُّْلحُ خَيْرٌ{ فِي رَجُلٍ كاَنتْ تحْته اْمرَأٌَة قد طاَلتْ صحْبتها وَولَدتْ مِنه أوْلَاًدا فأرَاَد أن يستَبِْدَل بَِها فرَاضَته عََلى أن تقِيمَ عِندُه وَلَا يقسِمَ لَها .  

26.   Waking up your spouse for prayer  

It was narrated that Abu Hurairah said: “The Messenger of Allah ()ﷺ   said: ‘May Allah (SWT) have mercy on a man who gets up at night and prays, then he wakes his wife and she prays, and if she refuses he sprinkles water in her face. And may Allah (SWT) have mercy on a woman who gets up at night and prays, then she wakes her husband and prays, and if he refuses she sprinkles water in his face.’” Hasan Sunan an-Nasa’i 1610  

عَنْ أبِي هرَْيرََة، قاَل قاَ ل رَسُوُل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم : رَحِمَ اَّلُلّ رَجُلًا قامَ مِنَ الَّليلِ فَصلى ثمَّ أَْيقَظَ اْمرَأََتُه فَصََّلتْ فإْن أبتْ نضَحَ فِي وَجْهَِها اْلمَاَء وَرَحِمَ اَّلُلّ اْمرَأًَة قَاَمتْ مِنَ الَّليلِ فصََّلتْ ثمَّ أيقظَتْ زَوْ جََها فصلى فَِإن أََبى نضَحَتْ فِي وَجْهِهِ اْلمَاَء ”  

27. Permission to look at a woman while proposing 

It was narrated that Al-Mughirah bin Shu’bah said: “I proposed marriage to a woman during the time of the Messenger of Allah, and the Prophet said: ‘Have you seen her?’ I said: ‘No.’ He said: ‘Look at her, for that is more likely to create love between you.’” Sahih (Darussalam) Sunan an-Nasa’i 3235 

عَنِ اْلمُغِيرَةِ بنِ شُعْبة، قاَل خَطَبْتُ اْمرَأًَة على عَْهِد رَسُولِ اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فقَاَل النَّبِيُّ صلى الله عليه وسلم  أنظَرْتَ إَِليها ” . قلتُ لَا . قاَل ” فَاْنظُرْ إَِليها فإَّنُه أجَْدرُ أن يؤَْدمَ بيْنَكُمَا ” .  

28. A disbeliever should not marry Muslim

It was narrated that Anas said: “Abu Talhah proposed marriage to Umm Sulaim and she said: ‘By Allah, a man like you is not to be rejected, O Abu Talhah, but you are a disbeliever and I am a Muslim, and it is not permissible for me to marry you. If you become Muslim, that will be my dowry, and I will not ask you for anything else.’ So he became Muslim and that was her dowry.” (one of the narrators) Thabit said: “I have never heard of a woman whose dowry was more precious than Umm Sulaim (whose dowry was) Islam. And he consummated the marriage with her, and she bore him a child.” Hasan (Darussalam) Sunan an-Nasa’i 3341   

عَنْ أنسٍ، قاَل خَطَبَ أبو طَْلحََة أمَّ سليْمٍ فقاَلتْ وَاَّلِلّ ما مِثُْلكَ يا أبا طَْلحََة يرَُّد وََلكِنكَ رَجلٌ كَافِرٌ وَأََنا اْمرَأة مسْلِمٌَة وَلَا يحلُّ لي أن أتزَوَّجكَ فَِإْن تسْلِمْ فََذاكَ مهرِي وََما أسْألكَ غَيرَُه . فأسَْلمَ فَكَاَن ذَِلكَ مْهرََها – قَاَل ثابِتٌ فمَا سَمِعْ تُ بِاْمرَأةٍ قطُّ كاَنتْ أكْرَمَ مْهرًا مِنْ أُمِ  سَُليمٍ الإسْلَامَ – فََدخَلَ بَِها فوََلَدتْ لُه .  

29.   Husband dying before consummating the marriage  

It was narrated from ‘Abdullah that a woman was brought to him who had married a man then he had died without naming any dowry for her and without consummating the marriage with her. They kept coming to him for nearly a month, and he did not issue any ruling to them. Then he said: “I think that she should have a dowry like that of her peers no less, with no injustice and she may inherit from him and she has to observe the ‘Iddah.” Ma’qil bin Sinan Al-Ashja’i testified: “The Messenger of Allah passed a similar judgment concerning Birwa’ bint Washiq.” Sahih (Darussalam) Sunan an-Nasa’i 3355 

 عَنْ عَبد اَّلِلّ، أََّنُه أتِيَ فِي اْمرَأَةٍ تزَوَّجها رَجلٌ فَماتَ عَنَْها وََلمْ يفرِضْ لَها صََداقا وََلمْ يْدخلْ بَِها فَاخْتلفُوا إَِليْهِ قرِيبا مِنْ شَْهرٍ لَا يفتِيهِمْ ثمَّ قاَل أَرَى لها صََداقَ نِسَائَِها لَا وَكسَ وَلَا  شطَطَ وََلَها اْلمِيرَاثُ وَعََليها اْلعَِّدُة . فشَهَِد معْقِلُ بنُ سِنانٍ الَأشجعِيُّ أََّن رَسوَل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قضَى فِي بِرْوَعَ بِنْتِ وَاشِقٍ بِمِثلِ ما قَضَيتَ  .  

30.   Provision for wife before the final divorce

Fatimah bint Qais said: “I came to the Prophet and said: ‘I am the daughter of Ali Khalid and my husband, so and so, sent word to me divorcing me. I asked his family for provision and shelter but they refused.’ They said: ‘O Messenger of Allah, he sent word to her divorcing her thrice.’” She said: “The Messenger of Allah said: ‘The woman is still entitled to provision and shelter if the husband can still take her back.’” Sahih (Darussalam) Sunan an-Nasa’i 3403   

حََّدثتنِي فاطِمَُة بِنتُ قيسٍ، قاَلتْ أتيْتُ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فقلتُ أنا بِنتُ آلِ خاِلٍد وَإَِّن زَوْجي فُلانا أَرْسَلَ إَِلىَّ بِطَلَاقِي وَإِ نِي سَألتُ أَْهله النَّفقة وَالسُّكنى فَأََبوْا عََلىَّ . قاُلوا يا رَسُوَل اَّلِلّ إَِّنُه قد أَرْسَلَ إَِليها بِث لَاثِ تطْلِيقَاتٍ . قاَلتْ فقاَل رَسوُل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم  :”إَِّنمَا النفقة وَالسكْنَى لْلمَرْأَةِ إذا كَاَن لزَوْجها عََليها الرَّجْعَُة ”  

31.   Regarding child custody 

It was narrated that Abu Maimunah said: “While I was with Abu Hurairah he said: ‘A woman came to the Messenger of Allah and said: May my father and mother be ransomed for you! My husband wants to take my son away, but he helps me, and brings me water from the well of Abu ‘Inabah. Her husband came and said: Who is going to take my son from me? The Messenger of Allah said: “O boy, this is your father and this is your mother; take the hand of whichever of them you want.” He took his mother’s hand and she left with him.’” Sahih (Darussalam) Sunan an-Nasa’i 3496  

عَنْ  أبِي ميمُوَنَة، قاَل بينا أنا عِنَْد أَبِي هرَْيرََة، فَقَاَل إَِّن اْمرَأة جَاَءتْ رَسُوَل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَقَاَلتْ فداكَ أبِي وَأ مِي إَِّن زَوْجي يرِيُد أن يْذهبَ بِاْبنِي وَقد نفعَنِي وَسَقانِي مِنْ بِئْرِ أَبِي عِنَبََة . فَجَاَء زَوْجَُها وَقاَل منْ يخَاصِمُنِي فِي اْبنِي فقَاَل  يا غُلامُ هَذا أبوكَ وََهذهِ أمكَ فخُْذ بِيد أَ يِهِمَا شِئْتَ ” فَأَخََذ بِيَِد أ مِهِ فَاْنطََلقتْ بِه  

32.   Wife giving birth few days after the husband’s death

Abu Salamah bin ‘Abdur-Rahman said: “It was said to Ibn ‘Abbas concerning a woman who gives birth one day after her husband died: ‘Can she get married?’ He said: ‘No, not until the longer of the two periods has ended.’ He said: ‘Allah says: And for those who are pregnant (whether they are divorced or their husbands are dead), their ‘Iddah (prescribed period) is until they lay down their burden.’ He said: ‘That only applies in the case of divorce.’ Abu Hurairah said: ‘I agree with my brother’s son’ –meaning, Abu Salamah. He sent his slave Kuraib and told him: ‘Go to Umm Salamah and ask her: Was this the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah?’ He came back and said: ‘Yes, Subai’ah Al-Aslamiyyah gave birth twenty days after her husband died, and the Messenger of Allah told her to get married, and Abu As-Sanabil was one of those who proposed marriage to her.’” Sahih (Darussalam) Sunan an-Nasa’i 3511   

قِيلَ لِاْبنِ عَباسٍ فِي اْمرَأةٍ وَضَعَتْ بعَْد وَفَاةِ زَوْجها بِعِشْرِينَ ليلة أيصُْلحُ لَها أن ت زوَّجَ قَاَل لَا إِلَّا آخرَ الَأجََلينِ . قاَل قلتُ قاَل اَّلُلّ تبارَكَ وََتعَاَلى } وَأُولاتُ الَأحْمَالِ أجَُلهنَّ أن يضَعْنَ حَمَْلهنَّ { فقَاَل إَِّنمَا ذلكَ فِي الطَّلَاقِ . فقاَل أبو هرَْيرََة أنا معَ اْبنِ أَخِي . يعْنِي أََبا سََلمََة . فأرْسَلَ غُلَاَمُه كرَْيبًا فقاَل اْئتِ أُمَّ سََلمة فَسَْلَها هلْ كاَن هذا سُنة مِنْ رَسُولِ اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فجَاَء فقاَل قاَلتْ نعَمْ سُبيْعَُة الَأسلمِيَُّة وَضَعَتْ بعَْد وَفاةِ زَوْجها بِعِشْرِينَ ليلة فَأََمرََها رَسوُل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم أن تزَوَّجَ فكاَن أبو السنَابِلِ فِيمنْ يخْطُبها  

33. Inciting a woman against her husband

Narrated Abu Hurayrah: The Prophet ()ﷺ   said: Anyone who incites a woman against her husband or a slave against his master is not one of us. Sahih (Al-Albani) Sunan Abi Dawud 2175  

 عَنْ أبِي هرَْيرََة، قاَل قاَل  رَسُوُل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم  ليْسَ مِنا منْ خَببَ اْمرَأة عََلى زَوْجَِها أَوْ عبًْدا عََلى سيِِ دهِ ”  

34. Child custody before the mother gets married again 

Amr b. Shu’aib on his father’s authority said that his grandfather (Abdullah ibn Amr ibn al-‘As) reported: A woman said: Messenger of Allah, my womb is a vessel to this son of mine, my breasts, a waterskin for him, and my lap a guard for him, yet his father has divorced me, and wants to take him away from me. The Messenger of Allah ()ﷺ   said: You have more right to him as long as you do not marry. Hasan (Al-Albani) Sunan Abi Dawud 2276  

 أََّن اْمرَأة، قاَلتْ يا رَسُوَل اَّلِلّ إَِّن اْبنِي هذا كَاَن بطْنِي لُه وِعَاًء وََثْديِي لُه سِقاًء وَحِجرِي لُه حِوَاًء وَإن أََباُه طََّلقنِي وَأرَاَد أن ينتزِعَُه مِنِ ي فقَاَل لَها رَسُوُل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم : أنتِ أَحقُّ بِهِ ما لمْ تنكِحي ”  

35.   Marrying without the permission of her Walii

Aishah narrated that: The Messenger of Allah said: “Whichever woman married without the permission of her Wali her marriage is invalid, her marriage is invalid, her marriage is invalid. If he entered into her, then the Mahr is for her in lieu of what he enjoyed from her private part. If they disagree, then the Sultan is the Wali for one who has no Wali.” Hasan (Darussalam) Jami` at-Tirmidhi 1102   

عَنْ عَائِشََة، أن رَسُوَل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قاَل  أَُّيمَا اْمرَأةٍ نكِحَتْ بِغَيرِ إِذْنِ وَِليَِ ها فنِكَاحها باطِلٌ فَنكَاحَُها باطِلٌ فنِكاحَُها باطِلٌ فَِإْن دخَلَ بَِها فََلَها اْلمَْهرُ بِمَا اسْتحَلَّ مِنْ فرْجها فإنِ اشتَجرُوا فَالسُّْلطَاُن وَِليُّ منْ لَا وَِليَّ لُه ”      

36.  Rights of a woman over her husband 

It was narrated from Hakim bin Muawiyah, from his father, that: A man asked the Prophet ()ﷺ  “What are the right of the woman over her husband?” He said: “That he should feed her as he feeds himself and clothe her as he clothes himself; he should not strike her on the face nor disfigure her, and he should not abandon her except in the house (as a form of discipline).”  (Hassan) Arabic : Book 9, Hadith 1923 Sunan Ibn Majah  

عَنْ حَكِيمِ بنِ معَاوَِيَة، عَنْ أبِيهِ، أََّن رَجُلًا، سأََل النبِيَّ ـ صلى الله عليه وسلم ـ ما حَقُّ اْلمَرْأةِ على الزَّوْجِ قَاَل  أن يطْعِمََها إِذَا طَعِمَ وَأن يكْسوََها إِذَا اكْتسَى وَلَا يضْرِبِ اْلوَجَْه وَلَا يقبِ حْ وَلَا يْهجرْ إِلَّا فِي اْلبيتِ ”   

37. No woman should arrange the marriage of another woman

It was narrated from Abu Hurairah that: The Messenger of Allah said: “No woman should arrange the marriage of another woman (i.e. she needs a walii), and no woman should arrange her own marriage. The adulteress is the one who arranges her own marriage.” Sahih (Darussalam) Arabic : Book 9, Hadith 1956 Sunan Ibn Majah 

 عَنْ أبِي هرَْيرََة، قاَل قاَل رَسُوُل اَّلِلّ ـ صلى الله عليه وسلم ـ  لَا تزَوِ جُ اْلمَرْأة اْلمَرْأة وَلَا تزَوِ جُ اْلمرْأَُة نفسََها فإَّن الزَّانِية هِيَ اَّلتِي تزَوِ جُ نفس ها ”  

38. Burdening the husband with unnecessary expenses

It was narrated from Jabir that:  The first thing that destroyed the Tribes of Israel is when the wife of a poor person would burden him for clothing or fashion like the way the wife of a rich man would burden him.’ Sahih (Albani) Silsila ahadeeth sahiha 591

 وعن جابر بن عبدالله رضي الله عنه أن النبي – صلى الله عليه وسلم – قال : ) إن أول ما هلك بنو إسرائيل أن امرأة الفقير كانت تكلفه من الثياب أو الصيغ  ما تكلف امرأة الغني.   


F. MISCELLANEOUS         متنوعة   

 1. Seeking knowledge together with men 

Abu Hurayra reported, “A woman came to the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and said, ‘Messenger of Allah! We cannot come to sit with you, so set aside a day when we can come.’ He said, ‘Your appointed place is the house of so-and-so.’ He came to the women at that time. Part of what he said to them was, ‘There is no woman among you who has three children die, resigning them to Allah, who will not enter the Garden.’ A woman said, ‘And if it is two?’ He replied, ‘And if it is two.'”   

عَنْ  أَبِي هرَْيرََ ة: جَاَءتِ اْمرَأة إَِلى رَسولِ الِله صلى الله عليه وسلم فقاَلتْ : يا رَسُوَل الِله، إَِّنا لَا نقدرُ عََليكَ فِي مجْلِسِكَ، فوَاعِْدَنا يوًْما نأتِكَ فِيهِ، فقَاَل : موْعُِدكُنَّ بيْتُ فلَانٍ، فجَاَءُهنَّ لَذلكَ اْل وعِْد، وَكاَن فِيمَا حََّدَثه نَّ: ما مِنكنَّ اْمرَأة يمُوتُ لَها ثلَاثٌ مِنَ اْلوََلِد، فَتَحْتسِبهمْ، إِلَّا دخََلتِ اْلجَنة، فَقاَلتِ اْمرَأٌَ ة: أَوِ اْثنا نِ؟ قاَ ل: أوَ اْثنان. Grade    : Sahih (Al-Albani) Al-Adab Al-Mufrad 148  

2.   Spreading knowledge  

Ibn Mas’ud (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Messenger of Allah()ﷺ  saying, “May Allah freshen the affairs of a person who hears something from us and communicates it to others exactly as he has heard it (i.e., both the meaning and the words), for it may be that the recipient of knowledge understands it better than the one who has heard it.” [At-Tirmidhi Book 13, Hadith 14] 

 وعن ابن مسعود رضي الله عنه قال: سمعت رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم يقول:  “نضر الله امرًءا سمع منا شيئا فبلغه كما سمعه فرب مبلغ أوعي من سامع” ))رواه الترمذي وقال: حديث حسن صحيح((.  

3. Pre and Post islamic women status 

Narrated Ibn `Abbas: (in a long hadith that) Umar had said: “By Allah, in the Pre-lslamic Period of Ignorance we did not pay attention to women until Allah revealed regarding them what He revealed regarding them and assigned for them what He has assigned.

 قَاَل عُمَرُ وَاَّلِلّ إِْن كنا فِي اْلجَاهِلِيَّةِ ما نعُُّد للن سَاِء أَْمرًا،  حَتَّى أنزََل اَّلُلّ فِيهِنَّ ما أنزََل وَقسمَ لُهنَّ ما قَسَمَ .    Sahih al-BukhariBook 65, Hadith 4913   

 4. Women as a source of knowledge

Narrated Abu Musa: “Never was a Hadith unclear to us – the Companions of the Messenger of Allah – and we asked ‘Aishah, except that we found some knowledge concerning it with her.” 

عَنْ أبِي موسَى، قاَل ما أشْكلَ عليْنَا أصحابَ رَسُولِ  اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم حَِديثٌ قَطُّ فسألنَا عائِشََة إِلَّا    .وَجَْدَنا عِنَْدَها مِنُْه عِْلما Grade    : Hasan (Darussalam) Jami` at-Tirmidhi Book 49, Hadith 4257   

5. Causing another woman’s abortion 

Narrated Hisham’s father from Al-Mughira bin Shu’ba: Umar consulted the companions about the case of a woman’s abortion (caused by somebody else). Al-Mughira said: The Prophet ()ﷺ   gave the verdict that a male or female slave should be given (as a Diya). Then Muhammad bin Maslama testified that he had witnessed the Prophet ()ﷺ   giving such a verdict. Sahih al-Bukhari 6905

 عَنْ عُمَرَ ـ رضى الله عنه ـ أنُه استَشارَُهمْ فِي إِْملاص اْلمَرْأةِ فقاَل اْلمُغِيرَُة قضَى النَّبِيُّ صلى الله عليه وسلم بِاْلغُرَّةِ عَبد أوْ أم ةٍ. فقاَل اْئتِ منْ يشهد معَكَ، فَشَهَِد محَمَُّد بنُ مسَْلم ة أََّنُه شَهَِد النبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَضَى بِهِ .   

6.   A woman who dies in childbirth is a martyr 

It was narrated from ‘Uqbah bin ‘Amir that the Messenger of Allah ()ﷺ   said: “There are five things, whoever dies of any of them is a martyr. The one who is killed in the cause of Allah is a martyr; the one who dies of an abdominal complaint in the cause of Allah is a martyr; the one who dies of the plague in the cause of Allah is a martyr; and the woman who dies in childbirth in the cause of Allah is a martyr.” Sahih (Darussalam) Sunan an-Nasa’i 3163 

 عَنْ عُقبة بنِ عَامِرٍ، أن رَسُوَل اَّلِلّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَاَل : خَمْسٌ منْ قبِضَ فِي شَىء مِنُْهنَّ فهوَ شهِيٌد اْلمقْتوُل فِي سَبِيلِ اَّلِلّ شَهِيٌد وَاْلغَرِقُ فِي سبِي لِ اَّلِلّ شهِيٌد وَاْلمَبطُوُن فِي سَبِيلِ اَّلِلّ شَهِيٌد وَاْلمَطعُوُن فِي سَبِيلِ اَّلِلّ شهيٌد وَالنفسَاُء فِي سَبِيلِ اَّلِلّ شَهِيٌ د ”   

Alhamdulilah this is the end of our series on ‘100 hadiths on women’. For better understanding of these hadiths, refer to a sheikh or scholar who can give you more clarifications concerning the hadiths.

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There are five stages of grief; Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression and Acceptance. You know this because you heard a widow talk about it. But that is not exactly the whole story. You are immersed in your own grief, maybe not that of widowhood but the intense grief is definitely there.

You have been married to the same man for twelve long years. It was a love marriage, or so you thought. Five months into the marriage you realize you are married to a narcissist who doesn’t really care about you. You are his victim. He is emotionally abusing you but that is something no one talks about right? People talk of infidelity in marriage, physical abuse, sexual abuse, negligence…but who talks about being emotionally abused? You know what people will say. They will say you are ungrateful. You have a husband who pays the bills and feeds you, what more do you want? So you are patient with him. Maybe he will change. Maybe he will see that he is mistreating you and change for the better.

A year goes by, but he is still cold, rude and arrogant. He dismisses your existence the way a patient dismisses they are about to die. They ignore it. That’s what he does to you. He ignores you. He makes you feel small. He makes you feel unloved. You feel like a ghost. You wonder why. You question a lot of things. What happened to the love he claimed to have for you? What changed? Is it that he realized you are less beautiful than he actually thought? Is he dissatisfied with what you bring to the marriage table?

Soon enough, the first baby comes, and he is an excited dad for a minute. Then the rejoicing is all gone. It is all about duties once again. Buying pampers and cerelac. Then the second baby comes along. Then the third. Then the fourth. Before you know it, it has been twelve years already. You have withered like a flower. You have lost weight and your will to live life as it should be.

When you had the first baby, you thought, ‘maybe this is it. Maybe he will now be more emotionally available for us’ but he didn’t. You thought of giving it time. You have hope. You have faith that things will get better. But four children later, your husband is still like a dead man walking. No emotions. No intimacy. No proper communication. All along, people could see your misery behind your forced smile. You never had to say anything, they just knew by how each one of you would take a different lane while walking at the road. Or how he would go to the farthest section from you in the supermarket. Or how he would quickly let his hand slip when you try to hold his hand in front of your family. People knew. You knew. But you just had a lot more to be grateful for. So you swallowed the bitter pill for years.

On your bedroom wall is a beautiful painting of the serenity prayer used in recovery programs. It says,
‘God grant me the serenity
To accept the things I cannot change,
The courage to change the things I can,
and the wisdom to know the difference’

You stare at it every single morning, like it would give you answers.
‘God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change’ and you wonder, is your marriage and the misery within it something you cannot change? Is it something you should have given up on a long time ago? Is this simply how it was meant to be?

Several friends suggested that you pick your children and walk away. But you always had this anticipation that things will eventually change. You thought, ‘But how can I walk away now when my children are young and need more parents?’ so you postponed it. When they became teenagers, life became even tougher because now, your children are all moody, stubborn and aggressive. You think, ‘This is the worst time to make children go through a divorce’ so you wait until they become adults. But deep down your heart you know it, it wasn’t just about the children. It is also about you. You not accepting that you are caged in an unhappy marriage that is not fulfilling in any way.

You stare at the serenity prayer. ‘Very powerful,’ you think. But do you have courage to change the things you can? Take life into your own hands. Be realistic on where your marriage is headed to? Is it something that can be salvaged? Changed? Saved? Or are you just seeking a mirage. An illusion?

It is like what happens when you are a child and can’t wait to be a teenager because at that age and time, you think being a teenager is the coolest thing. Then the teenage years are as chaotic as humanly possible and you look up to the young adults and you think, ‘these lads have exciting lives. Once I get there, it will be exciting too’ but you get to your twenties and realize there is so much confusion than excitement. Then you anticipate being like the real grown ups with careers and families and friends. But you get there and it strikes you, ‘NO ONE HAS IT FIGURED OUT.’ No one can actually, in full certainty, tell you what they are doing with their lives or where they are headed to. A mirage. You too have been seeking a mirage in your marriage, always anticipating certain incidents to turn around your life. Only, life doesn’t happen like that.

Whenever you think of divorce, you think of your reasons to walk away. How long is it considerable enough to have hope but also not to allow yourself drown in the sea of emptiness? How many months or years should one be in a marriage before they walk away? One year? Two? Five? When is the safest time to walk away without having blame and guilt on you? Its been twelve years and you still haven’t figured this out.

You know the stages of grief because you have been living in grief.

Denial: It is not that he doesn’t love me. He is just not an expressive person. He doesn’t know how to show me that he loves me.

Anger: Why are you doing this to me?! Why did you marry me if you had no interest in valuing me as your wife?! I don’t deserve this! I hate you! I hate that I ever met you!

Bargaining: Please love me.
Please love me.
Please love me.
Please love me.
Please love me.

Depression: I am so so tired. I just don’t want to live anymore. I just don’t want to live anymore!

Acceptance: ….

You are stuck here. In depression. You are yet to decide what really matters to you. You are yet to take action in either freeing yourself or saving your marriage at any cost. You are yet to decide whether an unhappy marriage is a reason good enough to walk away or patience is key here. Miracles do happen. Prayers do get answered. People do turn around and change completely. Question is, is your husband that kind of person? No one is going to decide it for you. No one knows your husband, your marriage, your children more than yourself. No one knows YOU than you. You know you need to face reality now.

You need to decide whether you want to die grieving of lost love or move to the next step of acceptance and take necessary action.

You know the five stages of grief so well, it is heartbreaking.