According to Psychiatrists Holmes and Rahe, life’s top 3 most stressful events include: death of a spouse, divorce and separation. Small wonder a number of research show that married couples are healthier and happier than the general population. While some of us are married, others are single or divorced. The fear of being single for life often pushes us into making errors we wouldn’t have made in the first instance.
The failures within a marriage are often older than the marriage certificate. They are in the baggage we bring into it from our different lives like:
• immaturity and unrealistic expectations
• pride and arrogance
• Vices like adultery, pornography etc.
There is a popular saying that ‘courtship brings out the best, marriage brings out the rest.’ As we begin to settle into our marital lives, we begin to unpack our luggage. While some people do change in marriage, majority are simply unmasking themselves, not morphing into monsters. The price-tag of marriage carrying half of one’s faith would not have been so high if it wasn’t for the lessons one gleans everyday in the institution.
Irrespective of what you are experiencing in your marriage, you can both make it work if you are willing to add various ingredients to make it savoury. The spices include (but are not limited to): appreciation, tolerance, patience, respect, variety, trust, love, intimacy, compromise, sacrifice, communication and above all, prayer.
Allah must be included in the equation of marriage to make it balanced. In fact, He must be the first in the equation! No matter how desolate the union seems, we should never forget that if Allah can bring out the living from the dead, what will it take Him to revive a dying marriage? Both parties have to work hard at it. You wouldn’t buy a car and leave it to fuel itself, top up the water in the radiator or repair itself, would you? No matter how wonderful that brand of car is, it will be destroyed by lack of care. Isn’t our marriage more deserving of our attention?
Allah has permitted the option of divorce in Islam but before we sprint to that door, let us ensure we have exhausted all options before resorting to this most detestable of permissible acts. The grass may not look so green once we reach the other side and remove our rose-tinted glasses. If you have to take the bold step of leaving; look, look, and look again before you leap. True husbands and wives are hard to find in the multitude of humans out there.
And if you are unmarried, the time to improve yourself is now!