Here you’ll find posts on Islamic love, marriage, dating, and all of that good stuff!

11 Cute Dates to Go on with Your Husband
So you skipped dating and went straight to marriage. Good for you! But you still might feel like you’ve missed something, especially if you have friends who date and tell you all about their cute dates.

But just because you skipped all the dating shenanigans doesn’t mean that you can’t experience the whole dating scene. You can skip all those ‘does he like me’ or ‘will he call me back’ moments and just enjoy spending time together since you don’t need to worry about that.

So below I’ve compiled a list of 11 cute dates to go on with your husband. Enjoy!

1. Stargazing
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Nothing makes you feel a great sense of awe and joy than staring up at the infinite stars that dot the sky. And so who better to experience this sense of awe and amazement than with your better half?

Grab a blanket, drive a little out of the city, and find a secluded spot where you can just lie back and stare at the stars. Or you can also head to your backyard. Bring a thermos of hot cocoa if it’s a cool night and just enjoy the breathtaking view and spending time together.

2. The theatre
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There’s nothing wrong with going for dinner and a movie, but if you want to change things up a bit, why not try going to the theatre with your husband? Get all dolled up and ask him to wear a suit as you head out for a night on the town.

Check out the listings of theatres near you, and pick something both of you will enjoy, like a musical or a comedy, and get ready for a night of falling in love with a new story and characters. Go out for dinner somewhere nice before or after and enjoy each other’s company without any distractions.

3. The park
*park image
Remember all those childhood memories of hanging out at the park and swinging until you thought you could reach the sky? Why not recreate them with your husband?

Find a secluded park or go to your local park at night and sit on the swings and talk, or challenge each other to who can go the highest. It’s simple, but cute, especially since the goal is to spend time together, and what better way to do it than just talking and sharing your day with each other?

4. The fair

The fair is a whimsical and romantic place, perfect as a date with your husband! Find a day where the weather is nice and head to your local fair.

Nothing beats the traditional look and feel of the fair; ride the ferris wheel together, go on the merry round, and laugh at yourself for looking silly. Play some games, grab a tub of cotton candy and take lots silly photos of yourself to document the occasion!

5. Try new cuisine

If there’s a kind of food you’ve always wanted to try, find a local restaurant in your city and town and make it a date! Get dressed up and ask your hubby to do the same.

Linger over the bread basket and just enjoy each other’s company; there’s no rush! Just savour the new food together and be adventurous. Nothing beats trying new things together, and even if you don’t end up liking it, you’ll have the memories to remember.

6. The drive-in

Another old-time date idea is the drive-in. Find a movie you’re both dying to see or even pick an old favourite you’ve seen many times; the drive-in will still be a new experience.

Grab your favourite snacks and drinks, or even make some dinner that you can take with you, like sandwiches or wraps, and head to your local drive-in. Bring a blanket so you can get all cozy, and some lawn chairs if you happen to sit outside your car. Lean back and enjoy the show!

7. Cooking together

If you’re the one who normally cooks or if your husband is the one who does it, why not change tradition and do it together? Plan the menu together and be a bit adventurous about what you want to make; go for that dish you’ve been dying to try out but are scared to.

Put on some music and just have fun being together. Set the table nicely, light some candles, even though it’s just the two of you, and enjoy your homemade meal together. You might love it so much that it becomes a weekly tradition!

8. Go on a picnic

Spring and summer are the best time to go on picnics so pick a day when it’s not too hot or a chance of rain. Prepare yours and his favourite foods (you could do it together), pack a thermos of lemonade or an ice-cold drink, and head to your favourite park or secluded spot. It could even be in your backyard! Dress nicely, and don’t forget to bring an old sheet or something to sit on. Bring a pack of cards to play or some books to read, and just enjoy the beautiful day and each other’s company.

9. A boat ride

If you live near a lake or the ocean, why not rent a boat for an hour or two and just sit leisurely on the water? Bring some snacks, and if it’s a bit chilly, a blanket and a thermos of hot cocoa.

You could also bring a book or two and just relax while enjoying the view you have.

dates to go on with your husband

10. Explore your city

If you’ve lived in your current city for awhile, chances are you haven’t explored it fully. Take a day out of your schedule and be the tourist with your husband! Research some of the cool touristy spots and check them out. You might discover some new favourite places to hang out.

Dress comfortably, don’t plan a full itinerary, and just walk around, looking at things that interest you. Try food you’ve never tried before, visit some of the local landmarks, and be adventurous!

11. Learn together

What better way to grow closer than by learning something new and expanding your minds? Take a class about something that interests you, attend an Islamic lecture series or conference, or just spend an hour or two reading about a subject you’re interested in and then sharing what you’ve learned with one another. You’ll spend time together and learn something new!

And that’s my list of cute dates to go on with your husband! Remember, you don’t need to blow your budget and do anything fancy to just spend time together. Just taking some time out of your busy day and spending an hour or two together is enough to strengthen the bond that God has created between you two. Hope you found it useful!

Keep smiling, beautiful girls.

With love.

With the rise of the media in the past few years, there’s been an increase of pressure on young Muslim girls to date. As someone who went to high school and university in the West, I know that pressure very well.

You might have non-Muslim friends who are dating or even Muslim friends who are dating. You might be surrounded by guys, guys who seem interested in getting to know you one-on-one, guys who seem very friendly, guys who seem like they would be the most wonderful boyfriend. You might just want to join your group of friends when they go out and hang out with their boyfriends. Or you might just be sick of being the third wheel. Or you might want to try and see what it’s like. Or you’re ready to get married and think that this is the best way to go about it. Or you might think that having a ‘halal boyfriend’ is no problem.

There’s many reasons that Muslim girls feel pressured to start dating. You might have your own. And I know how hard it might be to resist. But I’m here to tell you to have patience.

Yes, it’s easier said than done. I know all about that feeling of being lonely and wanting someone to share your life with. But I also know that God rewards those for abstaining from those things He has made unlawful. And one of the things He has made unlawful is relations before marriage.

If you’re still in school and marriage seems a long way away, it might be hard to wait for an imaginary someone, especially if you have a very real boy in your present. But again: have patience.

You might engage in a relationship and claim that you will marry this boy, and call him your ‘halal boyfriend’ since you set up very strict parameters about what you can and cannot do. You might have the best of intentions. But you have no guarantee that this boy will end up your husband nor do you know what God has planned for you.

In the Quran, Allah has told us in Surah Ar-Rum (30), Ayah 21 that “He created for you mates from among yourselves” (Yusuf Ali translation). What could be more wonderful that being told by the Creator that He has created someone for you, that He has already thought of you and provided for you? So have patience.

In the meantime, focus on other things. Join a club. Read some books. Hang out with friends. Start a hobby. Spend time with your family. Study the Quran. Pray.

Distance yourself from the people that pressure you to do something you don’t want to.

Having a relationship isn’t everything. Focus on the things that make you happy, and inshAllah God will take care of the rest.

For those of you who are going through this, may Allah make things easier for you. Hope you found this useful!
Keep smiling, beautiful girls!

With love.

***How Not to Flirt
There are lots of how-to guides out there that tell people how to flirt. This is not one of them. Instead, this is a guide that tells you how not to flirt, how to maintain your distance from the opposite sex, and remain modest.

Living in a Western society, men and women often have to work together, whether it’s for school or for professional purposes. Sometimes you just can’t get out of it and it’s a required part of the work you do. In these situations, it’s important to remain friendly and professional, especially if you are required to work in these environments for long periods of times. But sometimes, the line between friendly and flirtation can become blurry and you can begin to flirt unknowingly with the opposite sex. You might think of it as just being friendly, but the other person might be perceiving it differently.

And so I’ve compiled a list of 8 things to avoid when interacting with the opposite sex in order stay away from flirting.
Avoid Eye-contact

Many of us know of the ‘lower your gaze’ ayah in the Quran, and it holds firm especially in this case. When interacting with the opposite sex, avoid looking them in the eye for prolonged periods of time since it can sometimes be considered very direct and inviting. Instead of looking the other person directly in the eyes when talking with them, focus on something else.
Stay Away from Overusing Emoticons

In the age of technology, most of our conversations take place over phones and Facebook, and there’s nothing wrong with exchanging ideas and thoughts over social media. But the line between friendly and flirting can become indistinct when emoticons are overused, since they come off as jokey and overly-friendly. Keep it simple and keep it brief.
Avoid Physical Proximity

There are many situations in which you won’t be able to avoid being in proximity of the opposite sex, like a full elevator, a meeting, a bus, etc. But try to maintain your distance whenever you can. People don’t generally like it when you invade their personal space (unless absolutely necessary, like on the bus), so keep to yourself and don’t get too close.
Try Not to Tease

Teasing implies a close relationship, and can cultivate feelings of attraction. It’s okay to crack a joke once in awhile when interacting with the opposite sex, but teasing takes it to another level as it can be quite personal and can make the other person feel like you’re interested in them.
Don’t Compliment Appearances

Commenting or complimenting someone’s appearance is another way that lets someone know you’re interested in them. It’s only natural to notice someone and the way they look, but commenting on it as it could send someone the wrong message. So keep your thoughts to yourself.
Avoid Being Alone

There are obviously some cases where this is absolutely unavoidable, but try and avoid being alone with the opposite sex as much as you can as it is an invitation to Shaitan. You may not have any bad intentions when meeting with someone, but you don’t know the thoughts or feelings that could occur when being alone, and so try and avoid it as much as possible.
Hands to Yourself

Some of us are a lot more affectionate than others, and are used to giving hugs or high fives or even props. We may not have any ill intention when we do it, and we think that we’re just being friendly, but again, it could be perceived the wrong way. Also, Allah has asked us to keep our distance from non-mehram so that includes keeping your hands to yourself!
Don’t Fidget with Your Hair/Hijab

So many flirting guides encourage girls to play with their hair since it brings a guy’s attention to your hands, hair, etc, and it’s true! Don’t call attention to yourself by fidgeting or playing with your hair or hijab. Fidget with a pen or something else if you need to, but avoid calling attention to physical aspects of you.

And those are some tips on how not to flirt! Some girls are naturally very friendly, which come across as being flirtatious in some scenarios. So it’s best to maintain distance and avoid some of common things that be considered flirting in this day and age so as to maintain modesty. Indeed only Allah knows our intentions and is the only one who can judge our actions.

Hope you found this useful! Keep smiling.

With love.

***Like, Love, Relationships, and Marriage
The number one question I get on Ask The Muslim Girl is about relationships. Many of you have emailed me in the past few asks asking me advice about boys, liking someone, wanting to get married to someone, halal relationships, etc. and I’ve been answering them to the best of my ability. But I wanted to do a post on all these things, like, love, relationships, and marriage, since it seems to be a pressing concern on many of your minds. First things first: I’m not the haram police and I’m not here to tell you that what you’re doing is right or wrong in regards to anything. Like everything else on this website, these are my personal opinions and you can take ’em or leave ’em. With that being said, let’s begin!

Liking someone is not a sin, girls! We’re all humans and we all have inclinations that lead us to like people, and there is nothing wrong with that. Whether it’s a classmate, a coworker, a celebrity, whoever, there are some feelings that we have that we can’t control. What we can control is what we do about them.

Liking someone or having a crush on someone and keeping it in your heart is one thing, but it is completely another to act upon it (unless you’re in the process of getting married; if so, see the relationships/marriage section below). Avoid flirting accidentally, and try to keep your feelings to yourself. If you’re not at the point of getting married in your life yet, sharing your feelings or letting the other person know you like them will lead to unnecessary complications, since dating isn’t permissible in Islam.

If the person that you like is in your group of friends or someone you see and interact with daily, try to keep your distance as soon as you become aware of your feelings. Keeping your distance doesn’t mean avoid them completely and become rude to them, but instead try to be mindful of what you say and how you act so as not to inadvertently let the other person know that you like them so as to invite a relationship.

It’s important not to get carried away by your feelings, which the media will encourage you to do, by selling you on the consumerism of love. Love is a feeling. It isn’t really halal or haram, but what it can make you do once you get carried away on those so-called feelings may be haram. If you think you love someone, ask yourself why. Is it because of the way they look? Is it because of the way they make you feel? A lot of the magical emotion of love that is sold to us in the media today is all about narcissism and feeling good about ourselves. Chances are if those are the reasons that you love someone, it isn’t love. It’s lust. If the reasons why you think you love someone are because of their character or their values, then maybe it’s time to think about marriage.

Before marriage, let’s talk about what usually comes before: relationships. Dating. Many of you already know that dating and relationships prior to marriage aren’t permissible in Islam, and so I’m not here to beat you over the head by telling you again.

What I am here to tell you is: I get it. I know the pressures of being young and feeling like you’re in love and wanting to be with someone. Like I said, those feelings are natural. And the pressures are real; whether it’s your friends, your society, the media around you, or just what you feel, it can be difficult to get away from the desire of wanting to date.

Sometimes it can even happen inadvertently. Dating looks like a lot of fun, but think about the consequences of your actions before you do it. Whether you call him your halal boyfriend or just your plain ol’ boyfriend, there’s no guarantee that you will marry him. None whatsoever. Many girls out there insist that they plan on getting married with the guy that they’re dating, and so their intention isn’t to fool around or be silly. And while your intentions may be pure, Shaitan definitely isn’t. And when a guy and a girl are alone together, the third is undoubtedly Shaitan.

So if you like someone and they like you, don’t date. Get married. Some of you might raise the concerns that you’re not in the financial capacity to get married or that you’re studying, etc., but if you are serious about the other person, protect yourselves by making the relationship halal and getting your nikkah done. You don’t need a lavish wedding or months of preparations to make the relationship halal in the eyes of God.

To go back to what I said earlier about keeping your feelings if you like someone, if you’re ready to get married, let the other person know! If you don’t ask, you’ll never know. And there’s lots of ways to do this: you can inquire through a friend, a family member, or a mutual acquaintance.

And girls, there’s nothing wrong with making the first step! Oftentimes we are often told that it’s shameful to ask the guy about marriage, but we have the Khadjah R.A’s (may Allah be pleased with her) example. She was interested in the Prophet (peace be upon him) and inquired about him. He considered her proposal and accepted. I talk a lot more about the process of getting married in my Marriage Talk series.

At the same time, don’t make the purpose of your life to get married, girls! If you’ve chosen to abstain from dating and relationships, this can be very tough, since getting married is your only way to have a halal relationship, but don’t make that your sole purpose. Focus on other things, and InshAllah God will make it happen when it’s meant to be.

Hope that answers your questions about like, love, relationships, and marriage. Like I said, liking someone isn’t haram. It’s what you choose to do about that can be a little tricky.

If you have any questions or any ideas for further topics, please let me know here! I read every message and try to respond within a few days.

***Marriage Talk: Finding Someone to Marry (Part 1)
Welcome to a new series on The Muslim Girl! Over the next few weeks I’ll be doing a series of posts on marriage and getting married. Today’s topic is all about finding someone to marry.

So you’ve decided that you’re ready for marriage. Congrats!

You might think that now that you’re ready to get married, Prince Charming will just chance upon your door and sweep you away. But as I talked about in my post on arranged marriage, that’s not exactly how it works.

Marriage has been recommended to us, and is a Sunnah of the Prophet. It is also known as half our deen which should say something about the importance of it. There’s many benefits to it, and so wanting to get married is very natural. But sometimes it’s not very easy.
Are you ready?

Before letting the world know that you’re ready to get married, you first need to check in with yourself. Are you ready for marriage? Despite what popular movies and books show us, marriage isn’t a fairytale; it’s a relationship that requires work and commitment, and so you need to be ready for that. Are you ready for the responsibility? Are you financially stable? Do you know your rights and responsibilities?

It might sound silly, but research. Read a little about Islamic rights and responsibilities of a husband and wife. There are many wonderful books out there on the topic and it’s important to know what is required of you before you take this step and enter a new relationship.
Let your parents know

This is a very important step, regardless of whether you decide to ask your parents to find someone for you or whether you want to find someone yourself. Parents play a vital role in our lives, and so it’s important to let them know of this huge step you plan on taking. They may have some guidance to help you, or they may be okay with you finding someone to marry. But do let them know.
Parents Find Someone (aka Arranged Marriage)

So there’s lots of strong opinions about this one, and I talk a bit about some of them in my post on arranged marriages.

Arranged marriage does not mean forced marriage and if that’s the understanding you have from personal experience, I’m here to tell you that it’s not true. No one can force you to marry anyone one. That is your basic Islamic right, granted to you by Allah, and so you should always be aware of that.

Arranged marriage simply means asking your family, friends, relatives,etc. to help you find a match. It does not mean that you are obligated to mary the match that is found for you, but it’s merely a way to introduce a guy and a girl for the explicit purpose of marriage. If you go this route, you may find that you already know the guy or have seen him before. Or it might be someone you’ve never met before, and will thus have to get to know before you make a decision.

Many people choose to ask their parents to help them find someone, but you can also ask friends or acquaintances or colleagues. There’s no shame in letting people around you know that you’re looking to get married and ask them if they know someone who would be a good fit. They might not know someone now, but by letting them know, they might meet someone down the road that they could recommend to you.
Liking Someone

So you might already have someone in mind who you’ve already met and are interested in for the purpose of marriage. There’s nothing wrong with being attracted to someone, and often times we’re told by our elders that this is wrong. It’s actually very natural.

As girls, many of us feel like we have to be approached by someone in order to find someone but that is not the case! We have our beloved Khadijah RA’s (may Allah be pleased with her) example in front of us; she was interested in the Prophet (peace be upon him) and sent a message to him. He responded and they got married. Through this example we can learn that there’s nothing shameful or wrong in letting someone know you’re interested in a respectful manner.

Who knows, maybe he had no idea you were ready for marriage and is interested too!
Patience and Prayer

Just because you’ve decided you want to get married doesn’t mean it’s going to happen right away. Finding someone to marry can sometimes take a few months of it can take years. You never know. So just be patient.

And while marriage is half our deen, it isn’t all of it, so keep doing what you love to do in the meantime. Don’t make it your whole life’s mission to get married; Allah has made us in pairs and he will bring your other half into your life when the time is right and not before. So just wait it out.

And while you’re waiting, pray. Many times we think we’re in complete control of our life, but we forget that not even a leaf drops without the will of Allah and so you won’t get married until Allah wills it. So ask Him for the best of partners and don’t despair when it doesn’t happen overnight.

Hope you found this post useful! Stay posted for more in the series, and if you have any ideas for future posts in this series or on any other, let me know here.

Keep smiling, beautiful girls!

With love.

***Marriage Talk: Speaking with Your Suitor (Part 2)
Welcome to part 2 in the Marriage Talk series! Part 1 was about finding someone to marry, and part 2 will be all about speaking with your suitor.

Regardless of whether you have known your suitor for years or whether you just met him, you will undoubtedly need to have a conversation when discussing marriage. The things that you’ll want to discuss will obviously vary from person to person, but there are some big topics or ideas that most people want to talk about when discussing marriage with another person.

Lucky for us, technology gives us ample ways to speak to your suitor. Whether the person lives an ocean away or a city away, there’s no doubt that phone calls, text messages, email, Facebook, Whatsapp, Skype, etc. can all help you when speaking with your suitor.

Regardless of the type of communication that you choose, don’t forget to have at least one face to face conversation with your suitor prior to agreeing to marriage. Because as much as technology can help, you won’t be speaking to your husband via Skype: you’ll be living with him and will do it in person. So don’t underestimate the power of a face to face conversation, especially since people can be very different in person from how they appear on social media.

So here are some large topics or themes that you might want to use when speaking with your suitor.
Small Talk

Sometimes we might want to jump straight into the heavy, weighty topics, such as family or religious compatibility, but it’s important to start with the small talk. You don’t want to come off as too driven; you want to get to know this person completely, and so by finding out the little things about them is a good place to start.

No matter what our views on some things might be, most people live their life day to day. So ask them how they are, how their day is going, if anything good happened to them today, etc. It’s small stuff, but it’s the small stuff that fills our days, and it’ll give you something to talk about, before you dive into the more serious stuff.
Family Matters

Regardless of whether you choose to live with your in-laws or not, or even whether you choose to have children or not, your husband will become your family, and so want to know how your suitor currently interacts with his family. This will give you some insight on how he will treat you, his new family member.

If family values are important to you, consider asking if he’s close to his family, some of his favourite childhood memories, who he’s closest to in his family, and the role his family has in his decision making process. It’s an age old saying, but it still holds true today: you’re not only marrying the guy, but his family. His family will also become your family, so get to know them. Finding out how he treats and interacts with his family will give you an idea as to how he will treat you and your family.

Other topics around family might be living arrangements (does he expect you to live with his family or separately) or whether he wants children, and when.
Future Matters

Marriage means spending life together, and so you want to know how your suitor envisions his life playing out. You want to know if you could fit into those life plans, and whether your goals and ideas for your life match with the other person’s.

Some topics for consideration might be where he sees himself in 5 or 10 years down the road, or his career aspirations for the future, where he plans to live after marriage, or even personal development and how he plans on improving himself.

It’s important to discuss where both of you envision yourselves in the coming years, especially after marriage, in order to find out if you’re compatible or not. It’s better to know beforehand, prior to making a decision, than finding out after you’re already married that you’re going in different directions.
Financial Matters

Talking money can be quite tricky and a touchy subject for some, but it’s an important one. You need to know whether he’s financially responsible or not, since financial mismanagement or incompatibility is often the cause of failed marriages.

So be upfront and ask your suitor how he spends his money, what he spends it on, whether he plans on saving, what he saves for, etc. It might be awkward and personal to ask these question, but they’re important, and it’s better to know before rather than after.
Religious Matters

Religious compatibility is something else that’s very important. You want someone whose values are similar to your own, and so if religion is important to you, then you need to find out what your suitor’s religious beliefs are. Do they pray, do they fast, do they give zakat, what are the values that govern their life, what’s their opinion on interest or mortgage, etc.

Religion doesn’t only affect the wedding ceremony and the things that happen the day of, but they impact our lives after. So you want to make sure that you and your suitor are on the same page religiously.

So those are some broad topics of conversation that you might want to touch upon when speaking with your suitor. It’s not an exhaustive list, by any means, but a guide. For a list of actual suggestion questions to ask your suitor, check out Fatima’s Bridal House for a varied list of 25 questions.

Depending on what is most important to you, you might want to speak with your suitor about that first. If religious compatibility is most important to you, ask about that. If financial compatibility is most important to you, ask about that. It’s impossible to find someone who thinks the exact same way we do, so focus on the things that are most important to you and let the others go.

In some Muslim communities, having lengthy conversations or discussions with a suitor is seen is inappropriate, and so you’ll need to discuss with your parents and your suitor what’s right for you. But Islam has given us the right to speak with our prospective suitors to discover whether they’re right for us. Forced marriage is haram in Islam, and so you have every right to go into marriage with an understanding of the person you are about to marry.

At the same time, remember that Allah is aware of all you do. So keep it modest, keep it clean, and always, keep it respectful. Just because your parents can’t see you speaking with your suitor online or via text, doesn’t mean that God can’t. So keep that in mind as you try and get to know your suitor and decide if he’s right for you.

May Allah guide us all and make the process easy for us, InshAllah.

Hope you girls found this useful! Keep smiling.

With love.

****Marriage Talk: Dealing with Rejection (Part 3)
Welcome to the third part in my Marriage Talk series! Don’t forget to read up on Part 1: Finding someone to marry and Part 2: Speaking with your suitor. Today’s topic is all about dealing with rejection.

If you are going the arranged marriage route, you will undoubtedly come across rejection. No one finds the person they want to marry in the first instance. You might reject some proposals that you don’t think are right for you, and others might reject you for that same reason.

No doubt rejection hurts. Regardless of whether it’s done after a picture is exchanged or after a conversation or even after both parties have said yes, rejection is painful. But it’s important not to take it personally.

Believe me, it’s easier said than done. The marriage process, regardless of whether you go the arrange route or otherwise, is an extremely personal one, and so it’s difficult not to feel insulted, hurt, and upset. The further along you go in the process and the smoother things seem to be going, only to suddenly stop, the more painful it is. And it’s okay to be upset. What’s not okay is to get hung up on it.

Don’t let this one setback affect you so deeply and don’t let it affect the way you think about yourself or your self-confidence. Again, it’s easier said than done when you don’t know the reason why you’ve been rejected and begin thinking about the things that the other person may not have liked about you. Dealing with rejections might make you feel horrible about yourself, and you may begin to doubt yourself and the things you said or did. At this point, it becomes easy to begin to pick yourself apart and start listing all your flaws, and begin to get hung up on them. It’s easy to do, but it’s hard to get out of, because one way of dealing with rejection is to blame ourselves. But we all need to stop. Take a break from the process, let off some stream by doing the things you love, like exercising, cooking, watching a movie, etc. Don’t blame yourself and just take it easy.

All of this may seem easy in the beginning, but the more nos you get, it becomes difficult to stay positive and not take every single one of them personally. Dealing with rejection at this point can be even more difficult, and your own self-esteem may plummet. But don’t dwell on the rejections.

Don’t think about all the proposals that didn’t say yes; all you need is one. Instead of thinking about all the reasons why the proposals didn’t work, take comfort in the fact that none of them were meant for you. For some reason, Allah did not intend any of those guys for you. No matter how much we may think that a guy was perfect or a particular proposal was perfect, there was a reason it wasn’t meant for you, and you might realise it many years down the road.

Allah has made us all in pairs, and so just remember that your pair is out there, somewhere in the world and Allah will bring him to you when the time is right. And not before.

So be patient and have faith.

Hope you found this useful.

With love.

****Marriage Talk: Planning Your Wedding (Part 4)
Welcome to Part 4 in the Marriage Talk series. Previously we talked about finding someone to marry, speaking with your suitor, and dealing with rejection.

In this day and age of commercialized love, it can be quite difficult planning a wedding. Whether you’re a girl or a guy, you are constantly bombarded by ideas of love and romance.

From how big the ring should be, to how you should propose, to how big your wedding should be, to where you should go on your honeymoon, it can be quite difficult to get away from these super high standards. These standards are thrown in our face in the shows we watch, the movies we see, the books we read, and even the people we talk to. There is a constant competition in the world of weddings so much so that planning a wedding has become a full time job. It is no longer about the life you are about to lead with another person, but about the one day that has to be perfect.

Before I go any further, let me back up by saying: your wedding day is important. For many, finding someone to marry is a struggle and so when they finally find someone, they want to celebrate it. Celebrate it. It’s a happy day, alhamdulilah. But don’t become consumed by the idea of perfection in this one day. It’s just one day.

Many of us become so obsessed with the tiny details, like what colour the flowers should be, to how many guests should be there, to how many tiers we should have on our cake, to wearing the most expensive shoes money can buy, etc., that we lose sight of the bigger picture. And what is the bigger picture? Getting married. Completing half of your deen. Entering into a beautiful relationship blessed by God.

We become so consumed by focusing all of our time and energies on this one day, that we forget to think about the rest of your life together with the other person. Have you thought about how you’re going to live when the lights and cameras are gone? Have you spoken about your Islamic rights and responsibilities to each other?

We pour all of our resources into this one day that we forget that life goes on after this one day. There are some scary statistics out there that chronicle how expensive the average weddings can cost. The astronomical cost to a wedding often deters many young people from getting married because they are afraid they can’t afford the glamorous, expensive they think they’re supposed to have. And it’s sad that this is the state of affairs now.

There’s this constant pressure to let loose and do the things you’ve always wanted to on your wedding day, because, come on, it’s your wedding day. You’ll only have the one day, so why not spoil yourself and make it a Bollywood feature length film? Your wedding day might be the most important day of your life, but don’t forget that it’s just another day in your life. It will begin and it will end. It will be another day you will have to account for on the Day of Judgement. So don’t follow the trends or succumb to the pressure of doing things you know are wrong.

Aim for a marriage more beautiful than a wedding. Because the glitz and glam only lasts for a day; the rest of your life is living in moments that aren’t as glamorous or camera-worthy, but are even more beautiful.

So when planning a wedding, remember that it’s just one day. You have the rest of your life ahead of you.

Hope you found this useful.

With love.

***The Problem with Arranged Marriage
Yes, you read the title of this post right. Yes there is a problem with arranged marriage, a BIG problem. And the problem starts with you.

Many of us out there that don’t date before marriage are content to wait for Allah to find us our life partner. We choose not to date or engage in intimate relations before marriage, because we believe that the only relationship between a man and a woman can be that of husband and wife. And so we’re content to wait.

But while we’re waiting for our parents, family, or friends to find us this ideal mate, we begin daydreaming. While we wait, we begin to concoct a fantasy in which we are the princess and our husband is the prince. While we wait, we begin to build up our future husband to epic proportions. He will look like a mix between David Beckham and Shah Rukh Khan. He will be into sports but also going to the theatre with us. He will be a millionaire and will spoil us. He will be everything we’ve ever dreamed of and more.

I speak from experience when I say it’s so easy to do this. We don’t mean to, but as we wait for our soul male, we begin to have unrealistic expectations of our future spouse so much so that when we meet potential suitors, we are not satisfied. Obviously they don’t look like a mix between your favourite celebrity crushes and nor are they a millionaire. They might have some of the qualities you dreamed of, and they might have some qualities that you didn’t dream of.

Many of us get so caught up in this ‘dream guy’ that we let many potential suitors walk by us, because we are so fixated on finding that guy that we have been dreaming about and thinking about for years. But I have news for you: he doesn’t exist.

The qualities or attributes that you’re looking for, some of them are superfluous. Money will come and go, and so can looks. But the strength of someone’s character and their faith in God are things that last a lifetime. So prioritize. What are the characteristics or attributes that are most important to you? Is praying 5 times a day important to you? Is someone who is family-oriented important to you? Is someone who is forgiving important to you?

Focus on the things that matter most to you and forget about the things that don’t matter. Allah has made a match specifically for you, and he might do all the things that annoy you, but he is the one that Allah has destined for you. And you will end up together no matter what. So have patience.

And while you are waiting for your ‘dream guy’, take a look at yourself. Are you someone’s idea of a dream girl? Meaning, do you possess all the qualities and attributes that you are searching for in a life partner? If not, work on yourself. Not for the sake of someone else, but for yourself. Be the best person you can be.

Marriage is no fairytale. It is a relationship that requires work, love, and patience. It is half our deen, but not all of it. So don’t focus all your energies on it and on your idea of what your ideal husband will be.

So pray, make dua, and have patience. May Allah reward give us the best in this world and the next, inshAllah.

Hope you girls found this useful. Keep smiling!

With love.