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~ ~ 55 Ways to Maintain a Happy Marriage ~ ~ Assalamu alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu Marriage is a highly recommended Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad (saw).

The purpose of marriage in Islam is to increase the Muslim community and not only to enjoy pleasure as Muhammad (saw) said; Multiply your wives, multiply your children and I shall be proud of you on the Day of Judgement. Although marriage is encouraged in Islam, Allah and his Messenger Muhammad (saw) haven't left us to our rationality to discover what marriage entails and what things make a successful marriage. The following few pages highlight what makes a happy marriage based on the Qu'ran and Sunnah and how the husband and wife can gain each others heart. Hadith: [Collected in Bukhari, Muslim and Musnad Imam Ahmed]. Abdullah ibn Masud narrated: We used to sit with the Prophet (saw) and we didn't have much money. He (saw) said Whoever can marry should marry, it will help him lower his gaze or he should fast. [Al-Qur'an 4:03] And if you fear that you will not be able to deal justly with the orphan girls then marry (other) women of your choice, two, three or four; but if you fear that you will not be able to deal justly (with them), then only one or (slaves) that your right hands possess. That is nearer to prevent you from doing injustice. [Al-Qur'an 24:32] And marry those among you that are single and (also marry) the Salihun (pious, fit and capable ones) of your (male) slaves and maid-servants (female slaves). If they be poor Allah will enrich them out of His bounty. And Allah is All-Sufficient for His creatures' needs, All-Knowing (about the state of the people). 1 Short separation (days) will strengthen the marriage but long separation can weaken the relationship. As they say absence makes the heart grow fonder.'

2 Understand each others fitrah (The fitrah is the natural disposition of a person e.g. Allah has created man and women with certain qualities that are innate in them). The hadith of Muhammad (saw) states that Every person is born on a state of fitrah, it is their parents that change them to a Jew, Christian or Fire worshipper. Both the husband and wife must realise not to challenge each others fitrah but can account each other by their fitrah. Hadith: Prophet Muhammad (saw) said to his daughter Fatima; O Fatima , Allah has made Ali on a certain fitrah that you should know about. 3 Try and solve disputes on the same day.

Hadith: Prophet Muhammad (saw) said ; Don't let disputes stay until the next day but solve it the same day. Shaytan is always there to cause fitna for people especially between the husband and wife so its important not to let disputes last longer than a day otherwise small issues will seem very big. 4 Don't speak about your past! Islam forbids speaking about your jahilliyah (days of before practising Islam). 5 Stay away from idealism and live your lives naturally. Hadith: A couple came to Prophet (saw) and said we make mistakes' and He (saw) said you are not perfect'. Always evaluate the problem and don't pretend or expect miracles. 6 Convey your love and warm feelings to each other. Hadith: You must express yourself to your partners The wife of Muhammad (saw) said: The Prophet (saw) never let a day pass without showing his affection. 7 Fight against your own problems and don't share anger with your partner. 8 Do not be critical of each other. Hadith: Prophet (saw) said Do not be critical. All type of criticism is forbidden in Islam. Islam allows certain type of lying in order to maintain a good relationship e.g. complementing on the wife's cooking even if it doesn't taste nice! 9 When disputing with your partner don't expand the argument by adding all other previous disputes. Hadith: Prophet (saw) said Dare any of you who sleeps with his wife in the night and then critises her in the morning. 10 Never doubt your partner, Doubting each other can lead to the destruction of the marriage 11 Trust your partner and show you have full confidence in them. 12 Pick a suitable partner for yourself but also make sure that you are also compatible for your partner. Hadith: A man came to the Prophet Muhammad (saw) after seeing a woman for the purpose of marriage and said She is of good Deen but her father refuses' He (saw) replied did you look to yourself?' (This man never went for jihad or was see among the men of Medina ). The man replied Ya Rasuallah, verily you have spoken the truth. 13 The main pillar to maintain good relationship between the husband and wife is purity hence cleanliness of body and house etc is important.

Once a woman complained to the Prophet (saw) about her husband's bad odour. Hadith: The Messenger Muhammed (saw) said None of you who believe in Allah, spits and covers it. 14 You need to sacrifice to maintain relationship. Hadith : The Messenger Muhammad (saw) said; Sacrifice is the best gift between the husband and wife. 15 ADVISE FROM A SAHABIYAT TO HER DAUGHTER; Care about your husband like you care about yourself and love for your partner what you love for yourself. The Messenger Muhammad (saw) will never eat before his wives as mentioned in a hadith The best amongst you is the one who raises the food and feeds his wife. 16 Give your partner gifts. Exchanging gifts will cause more inclinations towards each other and strengthen the relationship. 17 Don't be selfish! Give and take, don't always take. 18 Don't accuse your partner for problems e.g. by saying You did it' or it's your fault.' 19 Live for the day and don't worry about tomorrow. Allah knows whether or not you are going to wake up in the morning! 20 Always remember that marriage is a divine bond, so think twice before doing something on the impulse which you will regret later. Hadtih: The Messenger Muhammad (saw) said; Three things that are serious; marriage, divorce and freeing the slave. 21 Although love is an essential part of marriage, do not take it for granted and abuse each other thinking that your partner will always love you regardless of ill treatment. 22 Be an example to your partner and let your actions tell and convey your personality. Hadith: Muhammad (saw) said; To change your partner the way you wish, be the model for them. Hadith: Pray Qiyaam with your wife. Hadith: Once Fatima (ra) the daughter of the Prophet Muhammad (saw) asked How can I be closer to Ali (ra)?' He (saw) replied Pray Qiyaam ul-Layl with him and whenever he wakes up, wake up with him.' 23 Do not let parents, relatives or neighbours interfere with your marriage. Try to reconcile between yourselves as much as you can and if that's not possible than allow a trustworthy Muslim to arbitrate.

24 Don't rush into correcting differences which you perceive in your partner. There are some matters that can only be changed with time. 25 The couple must both accept the consequences and responsibilities that marriage brings and be satisfied. 26 Do not embarrass or humiliate your partner especially in the presence of other people. 27 Participate in collective activities together. Co-operating with each other will bring a sense of family life e.g. Picnics, BBQ, dawah projects etc. The Prophet Muhammad used to do collective things with his wives. 28 Do not look down to your partner or ridicule their capability rather let your partner express themselves. Hadith: The Prophet Muhammad (saw); The good husband is the one when the speaks he listens and when she complains he is concerned. 29 The financial right (Naafaqah) of the wife is something serious and her husband must fulfil it. 30 Do not share your sadness and misery with your partner rather exchange jokes and laughter. 31 Do not allow your friends to interfere in your marriage. Aisha (ra) the wife of Muhammad (saw) once said to the women of the Ansar Watch out! Do not give room for your friends to interfere in your own privacy. Part of a man's fitrah is that he has the right of authority in the family as the head of the household and also that no one should know about his affairs. 32 Let your husband feel that you are content with him and that you are proud of him. Hadith : Muhammad (saw) Do not compare your husband with another man and don not compare your wife with another woman. 33 During times of disputes remember the goodness of your partner. Hadith: Muhammad (saw) said; The good deed abolishes the bad deed 34 Abu Bakr (ra) said: In order to understand the character and goodness of your partner, and to fight defection, remember; What you like about your partner? What happy experience has passed you two? What things you did together? Umar bin Khattab (ra) said: The good man is the one who makes his partner like him and appreciate him.

35 Be careful not to use abusive words during times of disputes. 36 Have celebrations with the family. The Prophet Muhammad used to encourage his daughter Fatima (ra) and Ali (ra) to celebrate with their children. 37 The intelligent wife is the one who asks her husband for things at the right time e.g. don't ask for a expensive dress if you know he can't afford it! 38 Hadith: The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said ; Three things that should not be used My dignity, My status, My pride. 39 Do not abolish the presence of your partner. Always have consult your partner, even if it's for small issues like grocery shopping. 40 Do not run away from home! If you want to discipline the wife for doing something sinful then separate from the bed but don't leave home. Hadith: The Messenger Muhammad (saw) said; Don't run away from home 41 Do not anger your husband by asking too many unnecessary questions and vice versa. 42 Do not desert the husband at home. Umar bin Khattab disciplined a woman for that and said to her; Are you a woman or a man?' 43 Do not exchange roles! Allah (swt) has clearly defined the rights and responsibilities of the husband and wife hence it is not proper for us to swap them. A woman must remember even if she is working, her husband, children and home would always come first. 44 Respect the In-laws. 45 Hadith: The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said; Honour your mother in-law and call her by the best names (according to the tradition). 46 Don't let the neighbour interfere. Hadith: The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said; Look after your neighbours and participate with them in happiness and sadness and always command them to obey Allah. Disclosing family secrets is not participating in sadness! 47 Be careful not to have disputes frequently, it will jeopardise the relationship. Learn to sacrifice in issues of permissibility in order to maintain tranquillity.

48 Always establish quietness, calmness and tranquility in the home. 49 Do not interfere with your partner when they are disciplining the children except in an emergency where your partner is violating the shari'ah. 50 Look after your children and maintain a high standard of upbringing e.g. clothing, feeding etc. 51 Listen to your husband and try not to forget to do things for which he has asked you to do. Hadith: The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said ; Teach your wife the chapter of An-Nisa, Al-Maida, AnNur (from the Qu'ran). 52 Shari'ah must be the centre of your lives and obedience to your husband is one of the means to Jannah. 53 Remember that Allah will always test you and there will be times that you may have domestic problems but remember every problem doesn't mean the end! 54 Avoid arguing with each other especially in front of children. 55 The wife should not allow anyone to enter her home without the permission of her husband.