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Moving past a mistake and forgiving yourself as well as others (Relationship)

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  • Moving past a mistake and forgiving yourself as well as others (Relationship)

    Salaam Aleikoum,

    I would like to ask you some advice on something that happened in my life, more specifically how you forgive yourself. Sometimes I am so afraid I will never be forgiven by Allah that I get extremely anxious. Also, I don't really know what to do regarding my mental state, as medication hasn't really been helping. I hope you can help me brothers and sisters and that you will not be too judgmental of me . Also, I am not a native English speaker, so please forgive me for any spelling or grammar mistakes.

    I was born and raised in a very pious family. I'm far from being someone who has a lot of knowledge regarding Islam, but I still am the kind of person who would pray 5 times, fast during the month of Ramadan and do my best to be kind and humble to others. When I was 17 (I will turn 23 soon insha'Allah), I fell in love with a Muslim girl. I viewed her as someone incredibly smart, caring and humble. At first, I had no intention to do anything about it. At the time, I was aware that Khadijah, who was the first wife of the Prophet (peace be upon him), loved him and saw him as an ideal husband before they got married (Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 16, p.20-21). I remember thinking I wasn't any different, because I also saw her (i.e. the girl I was in love with) as the ideal wife and naively thought that I could do the same thing Khadijah did with the Prophet (peace be upon him). Since she admitted having feelings for me, I decided to do the same. Right after telling this to each other, we agreed we wouldn't do anything (in terms of actions) before we're done with our studies and ready to get married. I remember telling her that we should tell our parents about it, but she didn't want to as her parents are very strict and preferred keeping it secret as of yet.

    For the next 4 years or so, this girl and I didn't do anything apart from being close friends (we didn't send each other any "I love you messages", no hand holding, ...). We would help each other out for our studies and talk about our personal problems. I don't usually talk to girls (especially not about this stuff), but, again, she was no ordinary girl to me. The only thing we did that I remember feeling guilty about is when we were watching TV (and the adult that was watching us left for a couple of minutes), she put her head on my shoulder and I put my head on hers. It was brief and, personally, I was not at ease. Regardless, about a year later, when I told her that it is time for us to tell our families that we want to get married, she told me didn't have the same feelings she used to. I was really devastated and hurt, so much so that I would have panic attacks and would throw up almost every day. I was extremely sad and have been diagnosed with depression and anxiety disorder. I made a crucial mistake not to ask for help to my family. I knew I could speak freely to my mom, but I didn't want to tell her about this, since I didn't want her to have a negative image of the girl (since our families are close and my mom knows her very well), Besides, I promised her I wouldn't tell anyone about it, so I thought it was best if I simply didn't reach out for support.

    A little later, I discovered that she had been having similar "stories" with other guys before she told me she didn't have feelings for me anymore (one of those guys happened to be a cousin of mine). I asked her for explanations. Her answer was: "I appreciate you want clarifications, so I think the first thing for me to clarify is that nothing actually happened between us. Yes, when I was young, there was this conversation where you said you liked me and I said I liked you. That's it. There was no formalization, no talk about the future. We didn't even hold hands. I was young and experiencing things for the first time and telling you I liked you didn't mean I was in a relationship. So, as far as I was concerned, there was nothing for me to end with you. You were simply a guy I fancied. There is really nothing more to it than that. Secondly, I don't know what you've heard regarding other guys. I have fancied other guys, but again, I have never been in a relationship." At that moment, I was insanely furious and angry. I'm angry at myself first because I've let those feelings for this girl drive me away from my faith. I willingly decided to tell her that I had romantic feelings for her, knowing that it was wrong because I thought I could make this right. I am also very angry at her (mostly because of her lack of honesty).

    Anyways, I've asked for forgiveness to Allah regarding my sins multiple times. However, when it comes to forgiving myself, I feel like I am unable to do that. I feel like a hypocrite to ask Allah for forgiveness given that I don't seem able to forgive her or myself. I keep having nightmares and panic attacks to this day. I was forced at some point to reach out for support. Although it helped for a while, I can't always disturb my family regarding this story. I am on medication to treat my depression, but it doesn't seem to have much effect. That's basically why I came here. I feel lost. I don't know what to do (that's mainly why I am writing this post). If you have any advice to give me, that would be really kind of you. Don't hesitate to be harsh or direct with me. I know I am in a situation I should not have put myself in.



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    • #3
      Waalaykum assalam warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,

      Don't despair in Allah's mercy. He is Al-Afuw and Al-Ghafoor. Do you think your sins are too great for him to forgive if you come to him with a sincere, repentant heart?

      Say, "O My servants who have transgressed against themselves [by sinning], do not despair of the mercy of Allah. Indeed, Allah forgives all sins. Indeed, it is He who is the Forgiving, the Merciful." (Quran 39:53)

      It's a blessing that Allah guided you to recognizing your mistake, but don't be so hard on yourself and remember that everyone makes mistakes and no one is perfect. The past is the past and allowing these memories to take hold of you won't change anything. Just take all of this as a learning experience so you will never fall into such a thing again, insha'Allah. And now that you see how this took you away from Islam, see this as an opportunity to draw closer to Allah. You will only find tranquility with Him, so seek to replace this sadness with peace by doing acts of ibadah. How many people have turned to Allah in times of hardship and He made their affairs easy for them?

      Don't keep reminding yourself about this as it's affecting your health. I really believe that you're giving in to waswas here. I know it's easier said than done, but you really need to fight yourself from giving in to these whispers. You need to first recognize what makes you feel depressed and anxious, then when you start to think of these things, seek refuge in Allah and cut these thoughts off. You need to make dua and ask Allah to help you overcome this as we don't have the ability to do anything except by His will.

      And when it comes to forgiving her, just try to make excuses for her and move on. Insha'Allah, you'll forget about all this soon.
      Last edited by .khayriyyah.; 21-10-19, 07:19 AM.
      Has the time not come for those who have believed that their hearts should become humbly submissive at the remembrance of Allah and what has come down of the truth? And let them not be like those who were given the Scripture before, and a long period passed over them, so their hearts hardened; and many of them are defiantly disobedient. (57:16)


      • #4
        Get a grip. Look at your situation from a stranger's viewpoint. One silly teenage girl who was just playing games with you tells you she doesn't have feelings for you , and you begin having panic attacks and go into severe depression. Hello ! Aren't you being over-dramatic ?

        Sure, you may have had feelings for her and envisioned a happy future together, but look at the situation objectively. You just shared some empty promises, not any concrete relationship (which would have been haraam anyway). Does the situation really necessitate you to be as upset as you are ? She isn't the only girl on this planet. There are millions of fish in the sea. Why should you be upset over someone who doesn't even want you or recognize your worth.

        Rather, you should say "Alhamdulillah. Good riddance" that you discovered her true colours on time and kick her memories in the dustbin where they belong and move on with your life. You're a young man in your early twenties, life doesn't end with her rejecting you. You have a chance of glorious future ahead of you.

        You've begged Allah sincerely for forgiveness, now move on. There's no need of rewinding your past repeatedly and crying over it. You cannot turn back time. The past is gone forever. Allah's mercy is vast and all-encompassing. It's Shaitan playing mind-games with you by constantly reminding you of your "relationship" and sending you into depression all over again.

        So, ask yourself , who do I want to please ? Shaitan or Ar-Rahman. If it's the latter, then get up and take charge of your life.

        It was wrong of you to begin taking anti-depressants in the first place. Now you'll have to take them for life. Talk to your doctor about decreasing your dose and enquire whether there's a chance of laying off them completely. But before that, get out of the gloom and doom mode. It's possible. You're alive, so, experience the beauty and joy of living instead of living like a corpse.

        If you have a job and are ready to settle down, talk to your parents about finding a pious girl for you to marry.

        May Allah grant you khair.


        • #5
          @.khayriyyah, thank you very much for your answer.

          ​​​​​​​@TwinklingStar, thank you for your answer too. I'd just like to clarify certain things. I didn't say to myself that I wanted to have depression or panic attacks. I couldn't control it. I went through this for a year trying to fight it on my own. I may have given up today, but I tried my best to not let it overwhelm me. Since it didn't get any better, I decided to talk to a specialist about it. She told me it was best to try medication (which doesn't work, so I will probably stop). I might be overdramatic, you're right. To this day I wonder why this situation has affected me so much.


          • #6

            Bro you dodged a bullet. Gosh she's only 23 and she's already led on several boys like this? Legit do not be upset over this, Allah saved you from disaster.

            It's good that you regret your actions. However I agree with the sister that you may have waswas with regards to forgiveness. With regards to asking Allah for forgiveness - Allah forgives people who repent from shirk, in comparison to that what you've done doesn't even compare, so you should not be hopeless with regard to forgiveness. And with regards to forgiving yourself. people do a lot worse than you, you got out of this after 4 years and you've barely made any major mistakes. Yes it's good that you regret it, however do not be so harsh with yourself that you're having panic attacks.

            With regards to depression and stuff, maybe take up going to gym, it'll help relieve stress and look up other therapeutic halal activities which you may be able to do.


            • #7
              This is why you should never get attached to a non-mahram. Sometimes it’s good to believe that girls have cooties, they are smelly etc. Life was simple when you were young

              Anyway, most importantly, you must remember that there is always hope for forgiveness. The doors of forgiveness are open for as long as you live, so turn back and have hope.