As a Muslim living in the UK the search for a spouse is a full time commitment and is definitely up there as a major pressure of modern life. Typically after years of education, finding a suitable job, working hard in a career; finding the person you want to spend the rest of your life with can be put on the back burner somewhat!
It’s even more of a challenge if you’re a single parent, a divorcee, or over a certain age and have all those social stigmas to contend. It is further compounded by the fact that traditional avenues have become a little frustrating and sometimes do not seem relevant anymore.
The typical questions one can ask are: Why? How? What went wrong? Why me, Where do I look & what do I do from here?
It may be an Islamic cliché but life by its very nature is a test. As human beings, our life in this world is characterized by inconsistent and changing conditions which we don’t always have control over. These conditions can make us happy or sad. No one can experience perpetual bliss or eternal misery, we can only maintain our respect, dignity and hold firmly onto our faith, family and friends when in life things get difficult.
It is also important to mention that you are not alone, many pious predecessors, including the companions (RA) went through the challenges which you are facing now. Try to find solace and inspiration in the fact that you are facing the same challenges. Do also try to research how they accepted Allah swt decree and prospered due to their patience and trust in Allah (SWT).
Furthermore always try to remember that every challenge we face is a test from Allah (SWT). In the holy Quran 2:286 it states “On no soul doth Allah place a burden greater than it can bear” 2:286. (This verse is also repeated in 6:152, 7:42 and 65:7). With this in mind and we must never lose hope in the divine plan of Allah (SWT) and try not to stop having a positive outlook on your situation.
In light of the above we have compiled some useful tips and guidance we feel may help when you are searching for your perfect Muslim spouse.
Always try to make dua and ask Allah (SWT) for guidance as much as you can.
All the Prophets (ﷺ) resorted to dua and supplications as their ultimate ‘weapon’ to attain Allah’s help when all their efforts would fail. We cannot compare our problems with what the Prophets of Allah had to endure but we can take inspiration in how they faced their challenges and imitate their endeavours and follow their examples.
Dua can also strengthen your connection with Allah (SWT) and help you persevere and continue with your life with gracious patience.
Ibn Taymiyyah said:
فلا بد من هذه الثلاثة العلم والرفق والصبر العلم قبل الأمر والنهي والرفق معه والصبر بعده
Three qualities are essential for enjoining good: knowledge, gentleness, and patience. Knowledge is required before enjoining and forbidding, gentleness is required during it, and patience is required after it.
Source: al-Amr bil Ma’rūf 1/20-21.
Do remember that without this step (dua and patience) all other tips or advice will be of no use and unsuccessful.
When searching for a spouse or when you have just come out of a divorce / separation it can be really easy to forget the obvious.
You, investing time on yourself is paramount and can often be neglected. The responsibilities of life will always be there (children, family, career etc.) and when you are single often there can be no one to turn to. It is vital you look at your duties and activities in an objective manner and always factor time for yourself.
Spending time learning a new skill, learning a new language, reciting/learning the Quran, keeping fit are just some examples of investing in yourself. Ensure you spend time on your interests and hobbies in socialising (in a halal way of courseJ) and do things which make you happy.
Too often we find many brothers and sisters have spent many years of their lives in the servitude of others, simply to make them happy. This is a noble act but ensuring you yourself stay healthy in mind, body and spirit is first and foremost. Buy yourself something nice once in a while (Can’t do any harmJ)
In life one often finds we spend too much time and energy on a particular aspect of your life, whether it be career, or family or religion. Real balance happens when we can ensure we spend our time wisely on all the aspects we find important. So try to give time to religion, health, family and of course to yourself.
Keep an open mind on any avenues in regards to finding the perfect spouse.
It would be easy for us to criticise other methods of finding a spouse but that’s not what we are about. Actively ask for help from family and friends be brave and state that you are looking for someone to complete your deen. Also do be clear about what you are looking for and of course be respectful on how they react or who they propose J, especially when it comes to the old ‘Aunty Networks’.
You should also not be afraid to approach your imam, community leader or Shaykh or even local Mosques and Islamic organisations (with your wali’s permission). Traditional methods of finding future wife or husband is now being supplemented by the arrival of Muslim matrimonial websites just like com, but Al-humdu-lillah there are also many other sites out there who truly provide a wonderful service. Keep an open mind as Allah swt may bless you with a pious spouse from an avenue you probably never even though of when searching.
If you do go via the online matrimonial site option please do make sure you invest time if compiling an effective profile.
Just like the Job CV, your online profile is the only view a perspective spouse has of you.
- Make sure you are honest and you don’t want to start anything with a lie especially something as major as your future husband or wife.
- You should ensure you have included all the essential information and facts as well as an honest current photo of yourself. Do ensure that you are upfront on any personal situation or circumstances (without detailing any specifics), which any potential spouse should be made aware of.
- Ensure your profile reads well and that you have checked for spelling and grammatical mistakes. It is an obvious one but can be a real indicator on how serious a person is. If needed try to get a friend to look through and evaluate your profile. It is also really important to ensure your profile is a ‘live document’ by this we mean don’t create your profile and then never look at it again. Ensure you routinely keep it up to date with new facts or changes in situation.
- Be open about what you are looking for but make sure you find the balance between being clear and being blunt. Avoid being unrealistic in what you can offer and do not ask for things inconsistent with what you can offer. Finally you can, if you wish, be selective with the information you provide but under no circumstances should you lie.
Be realistic and manage genuine expectations in order to optimise your search.
The most common piece of advice any matchmaker gives is for any person looking to get married is to ensure they manage expectations. This in no way means that one should compromise on his/her principles when looking for someone. Do however try to ensure you do not limit prospective spouses by putting in too many boundaries or markers of what a potential spouse should be.
Be focused on the end goal of finding someone for marriage who is compatible and someone you would spend the rest of your life with. Remember marriage is not something which is done, marriage is something which is made, it truly requires a lifetime of hard work, dedication and sacrifice by all parties to ensure it is a success.
Always remain positive and try not to get obsessed or depressed.
It may feel like you have missed the last train if you have been looking for a while or if a potential rejects your profile. It is a tough time and staying upbeat can be sometimes an uphill struggle. However never ever lose hope in the mercy and compassion of Allah (SWT). Allah’s plans are always better for his creation, it’s just sometimes we forget this. Put your complete trust in Allah (SWT) and stay positive and content, In-sha-Allah Allah (SWT) will reward your patience, perseverance, positivity and struggle with a husband or wife who will be the coolness of your eyes. Ameen
Lastly, it is imperative that when we have found the one we remember the struggles, pains and efforts we have gone through when looking for a spouse.
Many people often forget their own experiences and become quick to pass comment and judgement on those who are in the same situation as we once were. Show compassion and empathy to those who you find are looking for a spouse. Give them advice and some kind words, you will surprised how far a few kind words of encouragement can go.
Also do actively try to help your family and friends who want to get married use your experience to help them. If we all try to adopt this mind set and try to help each other the world would be a really nice place. Finally do what you can through your actions, words and du’as to try to stop the horrible practices which stop our brothers and sisters (of all faiths) from getting married. Mature MuslimMatrimony.com was set up because we decided that cultural obstacles placed by our communities and prevent marriage should be tackled and overcome. We felt that in this day and age mandating a specific caste, creed, culture, race should not be an absolute or outright requirement. Mature MuslimMatrimony.com also truly want to help break community taboos which regrettably look down at people who are divorced, separated, with children and can accept them living alone for the rest of their lives rather than them find a compatible life partner and a chance of fulfilling their deen.
Please make dua that we are successful in achieving this and in getting as many people as possible to fulfil half their deen & complete their family. Ameen
We hope you have found these tips useful and pray they guide you in your search for your future spouse. Please remember the Mature MuslimMatrimony.com team in your du’as also.