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  • marriage off limits

    Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu.

    I am new here but I thought this would be a useful space to ask for advice as I am too shy to speak about this with my family. My questions/concerns are in two parts so please bear with me.

    I work as a teacher and have been studying alongside it. I love my career and I have always loved seeking knowledge. My family have always encouraged me to do so, to the point that they have discouraged me from getting married like my sisters because they tell me I am the only one in the family to excel in education and they want me to achieve highly. I love my family but I have been telling them for the last 3 years that I want to get married but my family have said no to every man who has tried to approach me because they have not been at the same level educationally or they have been younger than me (I am 30). This worries but I am putting my trust in Allah. I do sometimes think though that maybe my choice to pursue further education has resulted in me shrinking my pool of options to a rare few?.... that is my first worry.

    The second is that I have a colleague who I work with and we spend a lot of time together on projects (in a group not alone) and he is a Muslim brother. He is patient, kind and advises me often and I advise him. He is trustworthy and he is known in the community for his good character and deen. He is married and I would never consider being a second wife (and he may not even be interested in me) so this is not about him being a potential... but I know he has the attributes/characteristics of someone I would consider had he not been married.... before I met him I didn't know what I was looking for specifically in a spouse, but the more time I spend around him the more I feel like he possesses the characteristics I am looking for.

    I have told my family that I no longer want to continue teaching whilst I am in the UK and that I may consider online teaching... I told them it is because I do not feel comfortable in an environment that has free mixing which is true but it is also because I do not want to spend any more time around this brother for fear that I will grow attached... not to him but to what he represents when I feel at this moment that I may never get married. I want to focus my attention on studying at home for a while to see if I can take my mind away from marriage.

    Do you think I am doing the right thing both in terms of wanting to leave my job and work at home and on giving up on the idea of getting married and focusing on doing good with the knowledge that I have?

    I know we were not all put on this earth to get married, some people never do and Allah has decreed that they do good in other ways... I am trying to accept that maybe not getting married is Allah's way of protecting me... I am just trying to control my environment the best way I can to protect my heart.

    Any advice you can offer would be appreciated.

    BarakAllahu Feekum

  • #2
    Re: marriage off limits

    My mom is also Somali and is the same way. Your parents probably don't want you to struggle the same way they did when immigrating to the West, so they want to make sure you're in stable (financially) hands. Can't really blame them for it. So I'd talk to them about it.

    One thing that would ease your parents' mind were if you showed you were financially stable on your own, and perhaps had a savings for yourself (not a spouse) in case of a rainy day or you divorce or anything. Show them you have a back up plan and inshallah won't need to depend on a man financially
    www.treasureofthescholars.wordpress.com

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: marriage off limits

      Originally posted by Grimmjow View Post
      My mom is also Somali and is the same way. Your parents probably don't want you to struggle the same way they did when immigrating to the West, so they want to make sure you're in stable (financially) hands. Can't really blame them for it. So I'd talk to them about it.

      One thing that would ease your parents' mind were if you showed you were financially stable on your own, and perhaps had a savings for yourself (not a spouse) in case of a rainy day or you divorce or anything. Show them you have a back up plan and inshallah won't need to depend on a man financially
      Alhamdulilah I understand their concerns and you are right, my mother raised us on her own and I know she is just trying to protect me. My father only recently came back into our lives.

      I am financially secure and have investments Alhamdulilah so money isn't a worry.

      I should also mention that none of my siblings live at home so its only me taking care of my parents so a part of me feels they want me to stay with them and take care of them which is a blessing so I am happy to.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: marriage off limits

        :salams:

        How'd you let tour parents decide your path in life into your 30s and for so long? especially when the Dinah is to get married early/ young if you were looking set things islamically?
        I think shifting the blame on to your parents is just shifting blame. At some point maybe 24,25,26,27,28 or 29 did you not stop to say/think that it is about time now, and there was no reason for the last potential to have been rejected,therefore, the next 1 is the 1 if he meets all my criteria?

        In sha Allah all goes well but I really think you shouldn't throw in the towel at all and, you should avoid that brother your spending work. Study as you wish but really put mire effort into fruiting married, get the word out there whether it be family, mosque or any other means.
        Believe none of what you hear, and only half of what you see.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: marriage off limits

          Originally posted by Somali_sister88 View Post
          Alhamdulilah I understand their concerns and you are right, my mother raised us on her own and I know she is just trying to protect me. My father only recently came back into our lives.

          I am financially secure and have investments Alhamdulilah so money isn't a worry.

          I should also mention that none of my siblings live at home so its only me taking care of my parents so a part of me feels they want me to stay with them and take care of them which is a blessing so I am happy to.
          Ah that part about your dad just coming back in your lives confirms what I'm thinking. Your mom doesn't want that for you.

          So I'm thinking you should talk to your mom individually, reassure that you will still take care of her after marriage, that you will have back-up plans for yourself in case the marriage goes south (sorry I keep mentioning divorce, but it's a concern).

          Also you will have to stand up for yourself at this point. Take initiative. Inquire about suitable brothers at the mosque or among relatives or whatnot. Initiate the contact between your parents and the potential. Make your parents see that you are serious about marriage.
          www.treasureofthescholars.wordpress.com

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: marriage off limits

            Originally posted by InTheBegining View Post
            :salams:

            How'd you let tour parents decide your path in life into your 30s and for so long? especially when the Dinah is to get married early/ young if you were looking set things islamically?
            I think shifting the blame on to your parents is just shifting blame. At some point maybe 24,25,26,27,28 or 29 did you not stop to say/think that it is about time now, and there was no reason for the last potential to have been rejected,therefore, the next 1 is the 1 if he meets all my criteria?

            In sha Allah all goes well but I really think you shouldn't throw in the towel at all and, you should avoid that brother your spending work. Study as you wish but really put mire effort into fruiting married, get the word out there whether it be family, mosque or any other means.
            I am not shifting the blame, my parents encouraged me to pursue my education and I made the choice to. I never even had marriage in mind until I was 25/26 and when I was ready I told my parents... but at this point my career had just started and they wanted me to work and become financially stable and if any proposals come consider it but don't look. It's not a case of resisting marriage, just that the ones who asked I wasn't compatible with for different reasons.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: marriage off limits

              Originally posted by Grimmjow View Post
              Ah that part about your dad just coming back in your lives confirms what I'm thinking. Your mom doesn't want that for you.

              So I'm thinking you should talk to your mom individually, reassure that you will still take care of her after marriage, that you will have back-up plans for yourself in case the marriage goes south (sorry I keep mentioning divorce, but it's a concern).

              Also you will have to stand up for yourself at this point. Take initiative. Inquire about suitable brothers at the mosque or among relatives or whatnot. Initiate the contact between your parents and the potential. Make your parents see that you are serious about marriage.
              JazakAllah khaire sis. That's exactly it. My mum has said often that she never wants me to be dependent on anyone. But I have 3 older sisters who all married between the ages of 18-24 and my mum was never this protective over them.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: marriage off limits

                Originally posted by Somali_sister88 View Post
                JazakAllah khaire sis. That's exactly it. My mum has said often that she never wants me to be dependent on anyone. But I have 3 older sisters who all married between the ages of 18-24 and my mum was never this protective over them.
                Yeah I'm the academically-included child so I get exactly what you mean. It works for me because I don't got marriage on the mind lol but for you it can be grating.

                Somali moms make sure to give their kids as many life skills as they can without giving them true independence. It can be effective parenting up until the child hits university age or start to develop their career. Then this parenting style actually inhibits them.

                It seems at your age, you possess the skills for a well-adjusted adult. You have a good career, have savings and investments, can take care of your parents. Your mom is probs super proud of you but still can't let you go.

                This is when you need to stand up for yourself and make it clear that you are 30, not 13. You possess the judgment to decide what is good and not good for you, and you don't want to be single forever. Make it clear that your mom has to let go of you in this aspect. It doesn't mean you'll leave her and become dependent on someone who can possibly hurt you.
                www.treasureofthescholars.wordpress.com

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: marriage off limits

                  Originally posted by Somali_sister88 View Post
                  Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu.

                  I am new here but I thought this would be a useful space to ask for advice as I am too shy to speak about this with my family. My questions/concerns are in two parts so please bear with me.

                  I work as a teacher and have been studying alongside it. I love my career and I have always loved seeking knowledge. My family have always encouraged me to do so, to the point that they have discouraged me from getting married like my sisters because they tell me I am the only one in the family to excel in education and they want me to achieve highly. I love my family but I have been telling them for the last 3 years that I want to get married but my family have said no to every man who has tried to approach me because they have not been at the same level educationally or they have been younger than me (I am 30). This worries but I am putting my trust in Allah. I do sometimes think though that maybe my choice to pursue further education has resulted in me shrinking my pool of options to a rare few?.... that is my first worry.

                  The second is that I have a colleague who I work with and we spend a lot of time together on projects (in a group not alone) and he is a Muslim brother. He is patient, kind and advises me often and I advise him. He is trustworthy and he is known in the community for his good character and deen. He is married and I would never consider being a second wife (and he may not even be interested in me) so this is not about him being a potential... but I know he has the attributes/characteristics of someone I would consider had he not been married.... before I met him I didn't know what I was looking for specifically in a spouse, but the more time I spend around him the more I feel like he possesses the characteristics I am looking for.

                  I have told my family that I no longer want to continue teaching whilst I am in the UK and that I may consider online teaching... I told them it is because I do not feel comfortable in an environment that has free mixing which is true but it is also because I do not want to spend any more time around this brother for fear that I will grow attached... not to him but to what he represents when I feel at this moment that I may never get married. I want to focus my attention on studying at home for a while to see if I can take my mind away from marriage.

                  Do you think I am doing the right thing both in terms of wanting to leave my job and work at home and on giving up on the idea of getting married and focusing on doing good with the knowledge that I have?

                  I know we were not all put on this earth to get married, some people never do and Allah has decreed that they do good in other ways... I am trying to accept that maybe not getting married is Allah's way of protecting me... I am just trying to control my environment the best way I can to protect my heart.

                  Any advice you can offer would be appreciated.

                  BarakAllahu Feekum
                  Wa alaykumus salaam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

                  You seem to have a very sensible, mature approach to life and it is correct that if you fear Allah in staying in this position and it potentially causing fitnah for you for you to remove yourself from it. Obedience to parents is obligatory, but not when it causes you to fall short in other areas of the deen and you have every right to look elsewhere in your career and life if that is better in terms of protecting your emaan and dignity as a sister.

                  In terms of doing good with the knowledge you have, this is an excellent idea, and there is a great deal of good you could do in the community. For example there is always a massive shortage of sisters for teaching new Muslim classes, and if I knew of a sister with your mentality, and she had good basic knowledge of the deen I would ask the masaajid in my area to see about putting on classes and using her for supporting the dawah in my area, and I am sure you can think of 10 different ways you can use these life skills you have developed with the permission of Allah to further the deen and help those around you.

                  In giving up on marriage, that I would be less sure is a good idea. Allah has granted women many abilities and attributes which make them the best for raising the next generation, to help our Ummah grow and develop. Leaving yourself unmarried is not going to make your desires go away, which every human being has, more or less and shaitan often plays with the emotions of those who leave themselves without the protection of a good spouse.

                  Rather figure out what you want to do to help the ummah, then make a man able to support you in doing that effort your main criterion in a marriage partner after deen and character. many sisters are pulled from the efforts of helping the deen by otherwise good brothers, who see them as being distracted from the home, yes women should be wives and mothers, and this is a big responsibility but it is not their only one in the community.

                  If such a man comes along, all well and good and if not then fine.

                  Finally, though educational is important, I would advise you, your parents and others to not make it such a strong criteria when it comes to marriage. Many men with letters after their names have horrible character, or lack basic common sense, or are ignorant and jahil still in so many other ways. Others who may lack these degrees are kind, humble, intelligent, articulate and easily capable of keeping an educated woman emotionally and intellectually satisfied in the marriage.
                  FOLLOW THE NEW BLOG - GINGERBEARDMAN - Muslim, father, husband, writer, defender of ginger rights!

                  www.facebook.com/outreach4Islam - Outreach4Islam have been working together in Leicester, calling the not yet Muslims to Islam since 2006.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: marriage off limits

                    Originally posted by Grimmjow View Post
                    Yeah I'm the academically-included child so I get exactly what you mean. It works for me because I don't got marriage on the mind lol but for you it can be grating.

                    Somali moms make sure to give their kids as many life skills as they can without giving them true independence. It can be effective parenting up until the child hits university age or start to develop their career. Then this parenting style actually inhibits them.

                    It seems at your age, you possess the skills for a well-adjusted adult. You have a good career, have savings and investments, can take care of your parents. Your mom is probs super proud of you but still can't let you go.

                    This is when you need to stand up for yourself and make it clear that you are 30, not 13. You possess the judgment to decide what is good and not good for you, and you don't want to be single forever. Make it clear that your mom has to let go of you in this aspect. It doesn't mean you'll leave her and become dependent on someone who can possibly hurt you.
                    BarakAllahu feeki sis for the advice. Insha'Allah I will try and speak with my parents about it one more time and see what their views are but at the end of it they are my first priority.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: marriage off limits

                      Originally posted by Gingerbeardman View Post
                      Wa alaykumus salaam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

                      You seem to have a very sensible, mature approach to life and it is correct that if you fear Allah in staying in this position and it potentially causing fitnah for you for you to remove yourself from it. Obedience to parents is obligatory, but not when it causes you to fall short in other areas of the deen and you have every right to look elsewhere in your career and life if that is better in terms of protecting your emaan and dignity as a sister.

                      In terms of doing good with the knowledge you have, this is an excellent idea, and there is a great deal of good you could do in the community. For example there is always a massive shortage of sisters for teaching new Muslim classes, and if I knew of a sister with your mentality, and she had good basic knowledge of the deen I would ask the masaajid in my area to see about putting on classes and using her for supporting the dawah in my area, and I am sure you can think of 10 different ways you can use these life skills you have developed with the permission of Allah to further the deen and help those around you.

                      In giving up on marriage, that I would be less sure is a good idea. Allah has granted women many abilities and attributes which make them the best for raising the next generation, to help our Ummah grow and develop. Leaving yourself unmarried is not going to make your desires go away, which every human being has, more or less and shaitan often plays with the emotions of those who leave themselves without the protection of a good spouse.

                      Rather figure out what you want to do to help the ummah, then make a man able to support you in doing that effort your main criterion in a marriage partner after deen and character. many sisters are pulled from the efforts of helping the deen by otherwise good brothers, who see them as being distracted from the home, yes women should be wives and mothers, and this is a big responsibility but it is not their only one in the community.

                      If such a man comes along, all well and good and if not then fine.

                      Finally, though educational is important, I would advise you, your parents and others to not make it such a strong criteria when it comes to marriage. Many men with letters after their names have horrible character, or lack basic common sense, or are ignorant and jahil still in so many other ways. Others who may lack these degrees are kind, humble, intelligent, articulate and easily capable of keeping an educated woman emotionally and intellectually satisfied in the marriage.
                      BarakAllahu feek for the advice. I appreciate it.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: marriage off limits

                        30 and unmarried. I would be worried if that was me. you can carry on teaching after marriage, as long as you can find someone that agrees to that. what happens if you get to 35 or 40 and still unmarried because your family are standing in the way?
                        Know that the life of this world is but amusement and diversion and adornment and boasting to one another and competition in increase of wealth and children...

                        -Quran (57:20)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: marriage off limits

                          Originally posted by deen1984 View Post
                          30 and unmarried. I would be worried if that was me. you can carry on teaching after marriage, as long as you can find someone that agrees to that. what happens if you get to 35 or 40 and still unmarried because your family are standing in the way?
                          If I reach the age of 40 and I am not married I would stop looking and give up on marriage completely.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: marriage off limits

                            Originally posted by Somali_sister88 View Post
                            If I reach the age of 40 and I am not married I would stop looking and give up on marriage completely.
                            I am somali myself and whenever I hear a somali family raised by a mother it fills me with wariness and dread especially if there are girls in the household. Nearly all somali weddings that ended up ion disasters were from families with no father around or wali absconding from his duty.

                            The girl falls for the guy and one thing leads to another and no checks and it's a recipe for a disaster. Not surprised you are getting attached to your co worker. I am not going to lecture you. But if there is a single piece of advice I am going to give you. It's that if you can't get your dad involved in marriage, ensure you get a male member involved. Even if he is your brother. Whatever you do. Do not hunt for a husband. Get someone to help you. preferably family or relatives. Somalis have many relatives. Get someone involved.

                            Bandits and playas always prey on gabdo somaliyad who are seen as walled off and alone from the marriage. Good luck

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: marriage off limits

                              Originally posted by Dinobot View Post
                              I am somali myself and whenever I hear a somali family raised by a mother it fills me with wariness and dread especially if there are girls in the household. Nearly all somali weddings that ended up ion disasters were from families with no father around or wali absconding from his duty.

                              The girl falls for the guy and one thing leads to another and no checks and it's a recipe for a disaster. Not surprised you are getting attached to your co worker. I am not going to lecture you. But if there is a single piece of advice I am going to give you. It's that if you can't get your dad involved in marriage, ensure you get a male member involved. Even if he is your brother. Whatever you do. Do not hunt for a husband. Get someone to help you. preferably family or relatives. Somalis have many relatives. Get someone involved.

                              Bandits and playas always prey on gabdo somaliyad who are seen as walled off and alone from the marriage. Good luck
                              Brother I am not estranged from my father lol. He has been in my life actively for the past 10 years but he worked abroad so we saw very little of him growing up- hence my mother raised us alone. But I have an amazing relationship with him and my older brother and would never think to approach someone myself.. I am far to shy to put myself out there. Alhamdulilah I know that my brothers would thoroughly research and protect me the best they can, my parents however just don't want to let go so my father just says no to everyone and the excuses range from education, to financial security, to distance.... the list goes on.

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