On the last page of most classical novels, you read about lovers who got married, and “lived happily ever after.” And, each time, you fantasize about the day you will tie the knot with the love of your life to witness, firsthand, the bliss of living happily ever after.
Albeit, days, weeks, months, or years into your lavish wedding ceremony, you begin to experience the opposite —a nagging husband who complains about every little thing or a hot-tempered wife who is easily irritated and pissed.
The alluring idea from the novels of living happily ever after, then, quickly, becomes an illusion —a sort of mirage— for many, and one concludes that marriage is deceitful and a non-essential undertaking to living a good life. Perhaps, making good friends and staying as friends would do or be better of the charade.
Alas! The worse happens. Divorce rears its head like a wild snake, bites deep, and releases enough venom (of regrets and hates) to kill a marriage.
While this has always played out from generation to generation, it has become even more pronounced in the digital age where some marriages may not last for more than a few days, and when some do, the couples cannot be said to be married but merely “flat-mates” sharing privacy to include toilet, bathroom, bedroom amongst others.
But, is this the norm? Are there no successful marriages out there? Must women always be at the receiving end? Is the so-called promised tranquility from marriage all illusion? And, most importantly, as Muslims, are there any guidelines and recommendations from the religion that could have salvaged the situation?
Keep reading to discover life truth(s) on marriage, and things every spouse must avoid to avert the tendencies of divorce or bad marriage.
Indeed, there are many factors that can contribute to a successful and healthy marriage. Also, avoiding certain behaviors can help prevent the breakdown of a union.
On the part of women, here are a few things to avoid to prevent a divorce:
- Avoid taking your partner for granted. Show appreciation and gratitude for your partner and all that they do for you. As women, one may easily get carried away with the thought of owning our husband, and see no reason to appreciate them often.
Consciously saying a common “thank you” when gifted can be a good start, a turn-on or serve as encouragement for most men.
- Research has shown that a marriage where heavy criticism and perpetual complaint have become the order of the day may not stand the test of time. Women must understand how these things can be avoided, without compromising their values, essence, and worship, to live and lead a happy life.
Instead, righteous women understand the place of dialogue and propensity to seek scholarly advice in finding solutions to problems as well as expressing one’s needs in a positive and constructive way.
- Avoid neglecting your partner’s emotional needs. It is easy to be distracted and lost in the world. For some, it is their career. For others, it is entertainment and leisure.
As a woman, it is important to remember always to be there for your partners when they need support and to show them love and affection. After all, that’s the purpose of marriage and the essence of accepting him when he proposed marriage.
- Avoid going to bed angry or upset with each other. Not only is this unhealthy, but it can also be mentally draining. You lose sleep and lose your love bit by bit. You wake up tired in the morning because you were foaming through the night.
In the morning, you rise with a swollen face that makes you lose your beauty. You should look at your reflection in the mirror. Your husband also begins to go cold, and then, you both turn to silent treatment and live under the same roof as boring flatmates, enraged and infuriated by grudges when you could have resolved the conflict by communicating openly and honestly.
- At all times, avoid letting negative patterns or behaviors become the norm in your marriage. No one is born perfect. Not you. Not your spouse. There should be no such thing as celebrating one’s imperfection.
In life, it is our duty to seek to get better all round. What we should celebrate instead should be milestones. And, if need be, you must be confident enough to seek help when you need it, whether it’s through therapy or other resources because you’re not alone.
Living happily ever after, as the popular saying goes, isn’t an illusion. How you row the boat of your love life is what matters. Go steady and slow, and see the beauty. Go hurriedly and hard, and you soon lose control and capsize. Verily, marriage is another avenue for education, and no man is above learning new ways to relate, speak, or behave.
Since you have come this far, here is a bonus for you.
Bonus: Introducing Heart-to-Heart
Heart-to-Heart with My Sister is a complete guide to maneuvering marriage-related issues –embellished with guidance from the Quran and Sunnah.
The author, US-based practicing nurse, and marriage counselor, Majeedah Ashimi Idris (Umm Sumayyah Mai), cited highly relatable stories, personal experiences, and recommendations from the Prophet of Islam, Prophet Muhammad ﷺ.
Taking cognizance of the digital age, the book comes timely as the world is in a critical time, where guidance is scarce and ignorance is widespread with many young girls left to scavenge for values they live by from social media.
While it is not enough to know WHAT to be avoided in marriage as enlisted above, the book thrust deeper to explain the intricacies of marriage, and HOW to effectively carry out the inherent responsibilities that come with it.
For instance, when we say avoid criticism and complaining or going to bed angry, Heart2Heart provides you with ideas to resolve your marital differences, and how to avert future re-occurrence in a win-win approach that is in line with the sunnah.
Reading Heart2Heart will save you marital stress, time, and money to book sessions with marriage counselors and therapists, and ultimately lead you to taste the bliss of a successful marriage where you can raise your sons and daughters the ideal way -whether living in Nigeria, Tanzania, the US, China, Korea, Japan, the UK, or elsewhere.
Actions you should take now:
Click here to read more about the book
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