Can I save my marriage?
Printed From: IslamiCity.com
Category: Culture & Community
Forum Name: Family Matter
Forum Discription: Discuss Family Issues
Printed Date: 23 May 2013 at 2:03pm
Topic: Can I save my marriage?
Posted By: Zanjabeel
Subject: Can I save my marriage?
Date Posted: 31 October 2011 at 12:07am
I am a mum of a busy 3 yr. old and married for 6 years. My husband and I are from different cultures, both born into Muslim families and both married in our 30s. He was 35 and I 31. We are both in the academic field.
For the past 4 years, we have been going in circles, having the same conversation about the downfalls in our marriage and in the past 2 months, we have started speaking about divorce. I love him. He has good characteristics, he's a great father and is a respectful person. The fault lies, I believe, with me and my expectations of marriage. I imagined marriage as a relationship in which I'd find a companion who would encourage me to be the best I could be, and respect and admiration for my husband is seriously in jeopardy. He is someone who is okay with doing the bare minimum, he prays alhamdulillah but would leave it to the last minute, he does conctribute to the community, but more often than not, he turns down any position of responsibility since he is not prepared to go the extra mile and that is how I feel about our marriage, he is doing the bare minimum. Most of his free time is spent watching television or on the internet with his family and friends, he watches beneficial programmes but he is, in my mind, more of an observer than a participant in life. We have spoken soooo much and we are both exhausted as it seems we start to make changes and then fall back into the same pattern . I dont know what to do. I am a student and not able to afford counselling and I have suggested that we speak to a local imam but he's not keen.
I am really afraid that these feelings of sadness might hint at incompatibility between us. I feel that, in so many ways, I have regressed in my life, in my spiritual life, professionally and my personal growth. It is as if, instead of motivating one another, my husband's cruising-through-life attitude has completely demotivated me. I don't enjoy doing things for him anymore, like cooking a meal he likes. It's as if the only way I can cope is to numb my feelings or else I'll explode.
Twice now, he has said that he does not want to keep me back from living the life I need to, and he does not want to make anyone suffer. I feel so afraid. I have never spoken to any of my family about my feelings of disappointment in my marriage. Please, any advice would be helpful. I feel I want to save my marriage...
Posted By: honeto
Date Posted: 02 November 2011 at 2:23pm
it is certainly a serious situation though not very uncommon in today's fragile environment where superficial things and distractions have taken over the much important and serious matters of our lives. I am no expert on this matter but based on what you wrote, it seems as if he has other interests and priorities than you do.
In real life there is no quick fix to these problems. There are several ways however you could go about this depending on your own position.
First, I would try the positive push.
I think, it is true when "they" say, "marriage is another name for compromise". If that was not being practiced, I would say there would be a lot more separations and divorces in the world today.
Divorce and separation is a loose loose situation for all and no wonder it is permitted only as a last resort.
I would suggest you take it as a challenge and give it another try.
Some tips, I remind myself of these every now and then.
1-Never hold back of what you can give as a move to fix things or to react.
2-Compete only in goodness.
3-Think of the greater good you might be able to cause over good only for yourself.
4-Difference you can make in lives of others attached to you, if you are able.
5-remember that good intentions and actions are dear to Allah and you are not just fixing things here but earning a great reward for the hereafter.
6-Loving others for the sake of Allah has a great reward and it can really change people.
Having said all of that, you be the judge, and make your best judgement in the light of pleasure of Allah.
39:64 Proclaim: Is it some one other than God that you order me to worship, O you ignorant ones?"
Posted By: Pati
Date Posted: 02 November 2011 at 3:13pm
Originally posted by Zanjabeel
AThe fault lies, I believe, with me and my expectations of marriage. I imagined marriage as a relationship in which I'd find a companion who would encourage me to be the best I could be, and respect and admiration for my husband is seriously in jeopardy. He is someone who is okay with doing the bare minimum, he prays alhamdulillah but would leave it to the last minute, he does conctribute to the community, but more often than not, he turns down any position of responsibility since he is not prepared to go the extra mile and that is how I feel about our marriage, he is doing the bare minimum. Most of his free time is spent watching television or on the internet with his family and friends, he watches beneficial programmes but he is, in my mind, more of an observer than a participant in life.
Well, I just want to tell you something: you have described the 90% of all the men in this world. And i am talking about men, not about muslim or christian.
I have so many friends who are repeating the same than you do and they say they are so tired... they keep repeating the things millions of times, they keep repeating all the things they should do at home, trying to get better lives... but men only think about relaxing... relaxing... and relaxing... it's like if they thought that things get done themselves LOL.
I think you are too much demanding with him, and the problem is that when women adopts that position, men get tired and stopped. Really, when you are always there like "a mother", your husband takes the role of "child", and sometimes you will want to kill him, I think.
But this is not enough reason to divorce him. If you didn't love him, if he was bad with you or your child, if something bad happened between both of you, sure I would encourage you to do. But... you have a common husband, only that. You only need to get relaxed.
By the way, you should make the things yourself, you are independent, and in your words we can see. If he is not able to take decisions, he is giving you the chance to do it. Why it should be always the men working on the main role? Maybe, that's what you need, to organize yourself and the family. Try to get new studies, and try to make him want to study something. You should find the way to make him want to study again, or to get better job, or whatever meaning improvement in the family life. But please, stop pressing him and comparing him with any ideal you had in your mind before marriage. He is there, he is the father of your child and he is good, and you said you love him. Start looking at his good points, and not only the bad or the worst, and imagine your life with another husband who was abussive, or complaining, or whatever. You are lucky, dear. He loves you, you love him, and you already got the gift of a child.
Fight. My suggestion is to fight, and to encourage yourself on saving the marriage. I am sure you can do it.
No God wants the killing, but the peace.
The weapons are carried by people, not by religions.
Posted By: abuayisha
Date Posted: 02 November 2011 at 5:41pm
You mentioned 'we are both in academic field' and that you are a student. Is he a student as well or working? Are you working as well? I have worked with people most of my adult life and what I've notice is varying abilities with workers. What your expectation are is just that, what you expect and are able to do yourself. Trying to demand this of others only leads to frustration. You consider him doing only the minimal, but perhaps this is close to his best, and at any rate nagging will never change him. If he is working, a good father, and providing for you and your child - you love him; great! I think academia can often infuse unrealistic notions and unfair comparisons. Let him be the individual he is and you should spend your energy being who you are. Wow, if everyone was just like me the world would be an awful place to live.
Posted By: Zanjabeel
Date Posted: 03 November 2011 at 8:51am
Thanks for your sobering words. I know that I have to do some serious growing-up here, and face my own weaknesses rather than my husband's first. I do feel that I want to fight for our marriage since there is so much good between us. I also know that thus far my strategies to motivate him and myself to make some good changes have not worked that well. I guess the last post was correct in so many ways, I am going to have to work really hard at accepting him for who he is, and to be thankful for what we have instead of looking at what we don't have. Your insights have helped me a great deal, and I have spoken to an Islamic scholar who also advised me along similar lines, and said I had to be wise and gentle in helping my husband emerge from his 'cocoon' as he called it. Any words of advice are always welcome. I'm planning a surprise get-away as I am about to finish exams soon, so in shaa Allah, looking forward to the time away with my husband and son. A happy eid to everyone. May Allaah accept from us and you.
Posted By: abuayisha
Date Posted: 03 November 2011 at 9:30pm
Posted By: Zanjabeel
Date Posted: 06 November 2011 at 11:30pm
Assalaamu'alaykum, so I was all motivated to give things a go & we fasted on 9th Thul Hijja, then come Eid day, everything went wrong. He wakes our 3 yr old up at 6:45am as we always go to mosque together, and then when I want to pack some eatables for him (which I can do in 2 mins), my husband says no we have to go and then we end up for 2 hours at a new masjid with a very enthusiastic imam and a frustrated 3 yr old and a tearful mum, yep me.
We then go to the farm to slaughter, even though my husband had the option to slaugher today since he is on vacation, and we spend another 2 hours waiting to slaughter. Then my 3 yr. old naps and my husband with him, and we miss lunch with our family. Btw, I also did not get to greet my neigbours since my husband locked the gate when he went to nap and so no-one could get in to greet us. I was busy ironing the clothes and cleaning house this time. We eventually went for lunch at 2pm and left before 4pm, when my son was just beginning to play with his cousins. He wanted to return home to speak with his family, which we usually do in the evenings. After that he fiddles away on the computer, it's a glorious summer's day after two weeks of raining. My son is playing outside with me alone for the rest of the afternoon. This day just made me feel like our happiness and comfort, as a family, does not feature in his 'programme'. I have tried many times to make excuses since he lived for years on his own, away from his family, so might have missed the finer details of learning to live with and accommodate the needs of others. I spent the most part of eid in tears. In shaa Allah, I am praying for strength. Please make du'as, and as I said, I want to fight for this, but I really don't know where to start.