Life after marriage can be either a constant tug of war or your spouse can become your best friend forever. Achieving the latter is the key to a healthy, happy and hearty family. Here’s how you can unlock the door to eternal bliss.
Khawar is fifteen years older than his wife Fouzia. He is diabetic, hypertensive, has had a kidney transplant and now cannot work or earn a living to support his family – the entire responsibility is on Fouzia’s shoulders. Then why does she stay with him and take care of him with a smiling face and a happy heart?
My dad is seventy and has had a bypass surgery. When my mom went on a short trip to another city, my dad called her thrice every day. Heeding to our advice, he did not call her one day, so that she may enjoy unhindered; however, she could not bear not to hear his voice and called him to ask if he was fine, and if not, should she take an earlier flight? Was it simply her responsibility that fuelled her concern?
In the above-mentioned relationships, it was the strengthened bond of love, care and communication that compelled the spouses to be concerned for each other. Apart from being a couple, they had always been each others’ best buddies. How can a couple become BFF? The answer lies in the three verses that are recited as part of the Nikah ceremony:
“O You who believe! Fear Allah (by doing All that He has ordered and by abstaining from All that He has forbidden) as He should be feared…” (Al-Imran 3:102)
“…fear Allah through whom you demand (your mutual rights), and (do not cut the relations of) the wombs (kinship)…” (An-Nisa 4:1)
“O You who believe! Keep your duty to Allah and fear Him, and speak (always) the truth…” (Al-Ahzab 33:70)
According to these verses, the basis of any relationship is God-consciousness, which compels one to avoid anything that displeases Allah (swt) and work towards creating a feeling of mutual respect, trust and honest communication among the spouses – the building blocks to lifelong friendship. To achieve this, it is imperative for both spouses to:
- Develop frank communication.
- Not be judgmental – listen and offer sincere advice. Sometimes, just listen.
- Respect and support the decisions of your spouse and their consequences.
- Define roles and give each other time and space.
- Rearing children should be a joint endeavour.
- Grow together in faith.
- Remember that fights are normal but forgive and forget quickly.
- Be loyal as true friends – always stand up for each other, against all odds.
- Intimacy is an essential part of any marriage. Dress up for each other and do something out of the ordinary once in a while to surprise your best friend.
- Finally, accept each other as BFF and make nurturing this relationship a priority through all odds.
I have been happily married to my BFF for seventeen years, and our secret is laughing at ourselves, making up quickly after a fight, and working towards paradise together. Alhumdulillah.