Marriage is a sacred bond, a Sunnah of our Prophet Muhammad(saw) and the way of attaining the pleasure of Allah.
When everything is new, it is easy to remain enthusiastic, but the reality is that somehow along the way in that journey, many people lose sight of the beauty in a good marriage and fall into negative patterns. A marital bond is something that is meant to be cultivated and grown with efforts from both husband as well as a wife. Whether you are just beginning your married life or are into it for quite some time. Add value to your bond and relation. Here are some tips to spice up your beautiful journey.
1. Set aside time for your spouse (Married Life)
Aisha (RA) reported that she was with Allah’s messenger during a journey. She said, “I was not bulky”. He told his companions to move forward and they did. He then told me: “Come and race me”. I raced him on foot and I beat him. But, on another journey, when I became bulky, he asked me to race him. I raced him and he beat me. He started laughing and said: “This makes up for that beating”.
The greatest gift that you can give your spouse in a marriage is endless your time. Of course, we have work and daily chores that need to be fulfilled but not giving your spouse the proper time that they deserve is being unjust towards them. How can one expect a beautiful understanding and strong bond with another person if he/she doesn’t spend time with his/her spouse?
It is this primary bond that will build the foundation of the family, so it has to be nurtured. Take drives, go out on walks, and even sit back at the end of the evening with a cup of tea or coffee to have a meaningful conversation.
2. Express your love through gratitude
“And of His signs is that He has created spouses for yourselves from your own selves so you might take comfort in them and He has created love and mercy among both of you. In this, there is evidence (of the truth) for the people who (carefully) think.” (Surah 30, Verse 21).
Love and mercy should be the hallmarks of any solid marriage and relationship. We see that it is stipulated in the scriptures. But is this truly what is practiced in modern daily life?
One must never take another person for granted. We all have our emotional needs. Certain actions of kindness and love work a great deal. Also, a nice little gesture or word indicating your love towards your spouse is great. That extra snack that your wife packs into your lunchbox or when your husband agrees to take the children away so that you can have time at your Mum’s place, can all seem mandatory and expected.
3. Make an effort
Sayyiduna Ibn Abbās Radi Allahu anhu said: “As my wife adorns herself for me, I adorn myself with her. I do not want to take all of my rights from her so that she will not take all of her rights from me because of Allah, the Exalted, stated the following: “And women shall have rights similar to the rights against them.” (Qur῾ān2:228.)
Our spouses have the right to see us in good shape and hygiene. Always remember that your spouse is a deserving recipient of your best. Marriage can be a complex situation at times, but there are still basic principles of a man and woman and attraction at play in a husband and wife relationship in Islam and an effort made in this department can help strengthen the marital bond.
A good scent, a clean body, good dress, and some makeup and accessories for the ladies all communicate to your spouse that you have a positive attitude about yourself and that you respect your marriage enough to make the effort. Men must also make the effort to be well-groomed to the best of their ability.
4. Do fun, halaal activities together
The Prophet (sall Allahu alaihe wa sallam) stated, “Allah is pleased when a husband plays with his wife, due to this he fixes Sawaab (good reward) for them or he establishes halal rizq (lawful sustenance) for them.” (Al-Ifsah Ibn Hajr Haithami)
From an Islamic perspective, marriage is treated with the utmost solemnity. However, this does not mean that fun within the marriage context should not be had.
As much as marriage can fall into a routine, it is important that as a couple you two retain the identity of man and wife. Before the two of you may have become mum and dad, you were both each other’s sweethearts and it is important to retain that identity and grow the love that exists there. Play games, eat out at your favorite restaurants and get the heart rate up with some fun adrenaline -filled sport. Create a buzz that you will remember and talk about for years to come.
5. Be thoughtful, kind and give gifts (Married Life)
“Be kind towards your women. Take heed! You have rights over your women and your women also have rights over you. Their rights over you are that you provide food and clothing for them in good faith. Your rights over them are that they do not allow and nor do they give permission, for people to trespass into your house whose presence you dislike.”
There is an understanding from this Hadith and the essence of that understanding is that there are rights and responsibilities that exist between men and women. A man must take the helm as a provider, but equally, a woman needs to close ranks and protect the home from any presence that may threaten it.
Get him or her, their favorite attar or book they would like to read. Contrary to what it may seem like, these are not necessarily material expressions of love. What it does convey, is that you took the time to observe and listen to your partner’s needs and found ways to meet them, which is in itself an ideal way to endear yourself to your partner.
6. Communicate with each other regarding feelings (Married Life)
The Prophet (sall Allahu alaihe wa sallam) said, “I severely dislike that woman who puts her cloak on and leaves the home in order to complain about her husband.” (Tabrani, Haithami)
If indeed your marriage has come to the point, where you feel that you need to go outside of the home to vent and complain about your spouse, perhaps it might be time to re-examine your methods of communication. Consider taking the time to discuss feelings and emotions. Both men and women are different in the ways in which they feel and interpret behavior. Make sure conversations are constructive, rather than destructive.
Speak from a place of building rather than breaking down. As husband and wife in Islam, you should always speak about how you feel and don’t just express displeasure but also speak of your joys and successes. If you are displeased with something about your spouse, converse with him/her in most polite and humble way. If your spouse is upset with you try to bring joy and fix the problem without being stubborn.
7. Take responsibility for the energy you bring to the table
Narrated AbuHurayrah: When the Prophet (peace be upon him) congratulated a man on his marriage, he said: May Allah bless for you, and may He bless on you, and combine both of you in good (works).
Sunan of Abu Dawood – Book 11 Hadith 2125
From this narration of hadith, it is evident that each partner needs to take responsibility for the attitude and the actions that they bring to the table in married life. The good works referred to isn’t necessarily a reference just to actions and deeds, but also to act in good faith and good spirit toward one another.
Married Life :
8. Be positive and spontaneous
“The most perfect believer in faith is the one whose character is finest and who is kindest to his wife.” Hadith
Love and marriage thrive under positive action. Take that leave that you’ve been putting off. For just one evening of the week, skip the gym and get home a little earlier to your wife. Ladies, meet your husband in the middle of a workday for a lunch date. Most importantly speak to your spouse in the quiet times about acts of spontaneity that would add value to their lives. Then make it a part of the marriage ‘bucket-list’ to go about adding those highlights to their lives.
9. Remember the good times and protect each other
“They (your wives) are a clothing (covering) for you and you too are a clothing (covering) for them.” (Surah 2, Verse 187)
Marriage is the ultimate act of teamwork. With this in mind, protect your partner, speak positivity into their life. Remember that you are not just a marital partner, but the other half of a winning team (married life). Inshallah, your marriage is a growing asset and foundation upon which you will raise wonderful children and fulfill the goals of half of your deen.
10. Allow your spouse to be themselves (Married Life)
Narrated by Thawban: When (the wahi) “And those who hoard gold and silver” came down they were with the Prophet (sall Allahu alaihi wa sallam) on one of his journeys. One of his companions said, “It has come down about gold and silver. Would that we knew which property is best so that we might acquire it!” He replied, “The best property is a tongue which mentions Allah, a grateful heart, and a believing wife who helps a man with his faith.”
Ahmad, Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah transmitted it.
[Al-Tirmidhi – Hadith 2275]
Accept your spouse for who they are. Be present in the relationship and the marriage that you have built. Simply put, what this means is accepting your spouse and allowing them the space to be themselves. Too often in marriages, one or the other spouse tends to dominate, scold or belittle the other in front of guests and the children just to keep up appearances. Such behavior places a damper on the spirit of the marriage.
Yes, there may be aspects in the other that cause you irritation, but the truth is that variety is the spice of life.
If you really have a problem with the way your husband slurps his soup or if you find your wife’s laughter to be a little too high-pitched at a social gathering, quietly and lovingly address such issues away from the public eye. Remember that the purpose of a journey in marriage is to grow together and part of that is allowing your loved one to be true to who they are.
May Allah bless us all.