So it’s November Allhumdullillah..the month of my Wedding Anniversary! This year is our big 1-0! Can you believe it?? I can’t! Lol..the fact that I can’t believe it offends my husband. “Did you not think we would make it this far?” He asked me all startled.
It’s not that..I just can’t believe that I’ve been married for a decade Allhumdullillah.
As I’m getting ready to celebrate 10 years of marriage, I can’t help but remember the four other couples that didn’t make it. Within my social circle there were 7 couples getting married around the same time. Today 4 of them are divorced. In fact, two marriages broke down within the first four months.
Being a paranoid worry wart to begin with, I couldn’t help but be effected by the marriages crumbling around us.
Were we next? Could their divorces have been avoided? Or was this simply another example of bad things happening to good people?
The breakdown of their marriages propelled me to find ways to protect mine. So began the never ending quest to uncover the secret to staying happily married.
I started casually asking women who had been married for twenty, thirty plus years about what they thought was the secret to staying married. I avidly read articles on studies citing the factors that all successful marriages had in common and I turned to Islamic teachings on the matter.
There’s some advice I wish I had known before getting married but I’m still grateful that I learned it even if it was the hard way.
As my younger cousins started getting married, I found myself unloading a ton of Do’s and Don’ts about how to: have a happy marriage , be a good wife , deal with conflict and get along with the in-laws.
In honour of our 10 year anniversary, I am going to dedicate this month to posts on marriage and relationships.
To kick off this blog series, I am starting off with 10 things I learned after 10 years of marriage. I’m by no means a relationship expert, but Allhumdullillah we’re doing alright (yes, I noticed that I’ve used the word Allhumdullillah over and over again..I tend to do that when I don’t want something to get jinxed or ‘nazared’/evil eyed).
I’ll be posting two to three points in every post from my 10 things I leaned from 10 years of marriage list.
Whether you are about to get married or have been married for decades, I pray you find my list beneficial to improving your marriage.
10 things I learned in 10 years of Marriage
Your faith is your responsibility. It’s important to marry a pious, God conscious spouse; but consider him/her as someone who will help make your life more conducive to the straight path but not the reason you will enter into Jannah. Think of your spouse like a study buddy- not a cheat sheet. Just remember, in the end you have to take the exam all by yourself. I’ve seen many people become better Muslims because they were inspired by their spouses faith and habits. Unfortunately the opposite is true as well. The moment you put the onus of responsibility on someone else to ‘make you a better person’ you are setting yourself up for failure. Those quotes all over the internet about searching for spouse who will wake you up for fajr, are endearing but send the wrong message. You need to wake yourself up.
2.Fight Fair: Sometimes
the wife one spouse has a sharper tongue or quicker comebacks during an argument, which results in him/her always ‘winning’ Just because you’re better in verbal combat, rendering your opponent speechless, doesn’t mean you’re right. Don’t oppress your spouse, we all know that Allah takes revenge on behalf of the oppressed -you don’t want to deal with that! One of the best marriage advice I came across was the fact that there’s three members in every marriage: you, your spouse and Allah.Always remember that Allah is The Most Just and The Ever Watchful. Just because your spouse doesn’t stand up for him/herself or stop you from transgressing on his/her rights doesn’t mean Allah won’t take you to account for it.
Tact is everything.Tact; the art of avoiding conflict. Countless fights could have been avoided and relationships saved, had tact been used. The way you say something, the words you choose and your tone essentially conveys the message. Shaikh Alaa el Sayed has a burger theory which is brilliant. Think of the buns like compliments and positive words, the meat patty as the issue on hand. Whatever your issue is, start off by saying something positive about your spouse , bring up the problem/issue and end with something positive again. This method of communicating prevents the recipient from becoming defensive and makes him/her more likely to actually listen to your message. This technique has never let me down Allhumdullillah.
Example: You want your spouse to stop yelling at the kids.
Bun: Masha’Allah you’re such a loving parent. Our kids are lucky to have you as a father.
Meat: It can be frustrating getting them to cooperate, but we gotta find a way to get through to them. Yelling at them only makes them anxious and unable to process what the message you’re trying to convey.
Bun: I love how you always have their well being and best interest in mind. Insha’Allah using tactics that children respond to, will make your parenting more effective.
Depending on your communication style, my example could sound very formal and condescending….don’t do that! Use your regular manner of speaking, just inject it with the tactful burger technique.
That’s all for today. Get in the driver seat of your faith, control your tongue and choose your words wisely.
Stay tuned for more tips!
How many years have you been married? What are some marriage tips or rules you abide by to keep your marriage strong?