I don’t detest this word. In fact, I think marriage is a healthy thing. I believe it is a way for two people to become vulnerable together, expose all their dimensions, reach out for each other, comfort each other, grow together in a partnership, allow children to blossom into beautiful adults. But what I really dislike, maybe even hate, is when people rush into this. Particularly Muslims. Our Prophet (pbuh) has advised people to marry young in order to avoid falling into sin e.g. premarital relations that are obviously forbidden in Islam. I understand that and I honestly appreciate that. That’s why I would like to be married by at least 25 years old. But the other side of the argument is that it allows young people to get married without understanding what exactly marriage is. Marriage is not some romantic fantasy where both partners are head over heels with each other and have children and raise successful children, everyone smiling ear to ear. That’s a joke. Marriage is hard. After the honeymoon period is over, things are going to get tough. Suddenly, you have serious decisions to make about your lives, the man that once was wooing you with love letters (or text messages, trying to cater for everybody here) will struggle to remember to whisper sweet nothings into your ear. The woman that was once too irresistible for you will now be nagging and whining about what are to you the littlest things and all you want to do is lock yourself in a room. I mean, I know not everyone undergoes this. The examples were merely for illustrative purposes. I know some marriage are genuinely blissful and some are destructive but wherever you fall on that scale, you will together deal with some pretty rough and stressful times.
Now if you bring two clueless young adults together, I think things will start to fall apart quickly. I mean, from personal experience, my friend is getting married next year to a person that she took one week to decide whether he is “the One”. Erm…am I missing the point here? Okay, let’s assume that this was a well informed decision…ooh wait you can’t because it wasn’t/isn’t. She’s been engaged just over a month and she still yet to talk to him about things such as finance i.e. spending habits, what each other’s financial goal is like in the next 5-10 years, whether buying a property is something that they both want to consider etc. They also haven’t spoken about family i.e. parenting style, when to start trying for a family, what values do you want to instil in your children and approx. how many children each one wants. No mention about how both deal with conflict, what their style of communication is in the event of a disagreement. I could go on but the trust is that his parents decided their big baby at 25 needs to get hitched in the next year and my friend must come to the rescue, dropping everything she has to start fresh in a different country. My friend fell victim to emotional blackmail. Her family pushed the idea onto her right after University (and also the months leading up to graduation). If you are told something over and over again, wouldn’t you start to believe it? If you are constantly told “you must get married very soon” over and over and over again, you will start to believe it. And this is what happened to her. I will try my best to advise her in terms of getting a mature conversation going with him. I am not going to say break up the engagement because I am not silly. She can decide that for herself. So I urge everyone not to think whether this person will look good with you in the wedding photos or whether they are from a respectable family. Those things are nothing if you haven’t built a foundation that consists of mutually agreed concepts and decisions. I think too many Muslims (probably due to their cultures) aren’t paying close attention to this. It’s all about the “go, go, go” with marriage to them and not enough “let’s think about this carefully”. Same goes for parents. Cultivate that energy you would spend pushing your children into premature marriage and spend it on them in a way that will help them become one step closer to their potential.
What do I want for myself? I would like to be more mature for a start. I still have no idea about the politics of this world and so I want to learn about that. I want to work on myself first. It is easy to want a long list of good attributes from a husband/wife, but do we ever stop and think if we have something to offer? Why should I get a successful person if I haven’t worked hard myself? Why should I demand a financially stable man if I am yet to reach that level too? I cringe at the thought of considering someone for the purpose of marriage and I have absolutely nothing to my name. I want to be somebody. I think we have lost all meaning of marriage here. It isn’t all take, take, take. Give a little too (preferably equal amounts).
*The above is purely my opinion and these opinions are a result of my observations. I am not an expert in marriage, I am just a girl speaking from her experience*