:bism: (In the Name of God, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful)
:sl: (Peace be upon you)
Originally Posted by Revert123
Basically, you've written a post that has been in some ways questions that have been in mind for some time as well. Like you, I have had strong notions of love, true love, and soulmates, though that's changed over the years. And yet I still can't seem to give that notion up entirely if that makes any sense.
1. So, first thing's first. True love does come after marriage in the sense that I believe that love is not simply about the za za zou
that you get when you're around a person whose company you enjoy but it's about the day-to-day work you put into the relationship to have it succeed which comprises of compromises and willingness of give-and-take. If the relationship has two takers, it won't succeed. So, in that sense, yes, love does come after marriage. However, I don't think necessarily that means that love will definitely come out of marriage. I think things like compatibility and shared vision and attraction still matter. If they didn't, Islamically, we wouldn't have been encouraged to find spouses based on piety first and then looking at other things because Islam acknowledges that those other things matter as well.
2. Okay, so, I think you can know compatibility with a person before marriage in the way that you both discuss about what is important in a marriage, future goals, how you see yourself, etc. These things should be discussed absolutely before marriage so that there aren't any awful surprises about different expectations of what the future should look like; so, a shared vision is really important. You are definitely allowed to discuss any matter pertinent to you deciding whether you would be willing to spend the rest of your life with this person. Because marriage is a responsibility and it's scary especially knowing that many marriages don't work out. For example, I had talked to a man about 2 years ago who I definitely felt I could fall in love with after marriage; unfortunately, things didn't work out as Allah didn't will that we marry one another. But about knowing that I could fall in love? Yeah, I knew I could (if we'd become married). Come on, as women, we have great instincts as to whether our heart would possibly tip over to someone's side given the right circumstances.
3. I think your best bet will be to try out matrimonial Internet sites or apps especially as you're in the United States. A lot of born Muslims even have problems finding spouses; so, it's important to know that you're not alone and it can be tiring. I mean - so every now and then, I get so tired of the searching process that I'm tempted to entirely give up but what I instead end up doing is taking breaks to find my equilibrium again so that I have a healthy approach to the process. Some sites that I recommend which do not require payments and are free would be muzmatch
; I have also heard of free apps Minder
and Salam Swipe
. Some paid sites are shaadi.com
; and physical banquet type events for meeting Muslim singles include ISNA
(upcoming banquets in Ohio on November 12th, 2016 and subsequently in California on December 17th, 2016), and APPNA YPN
which also have banquets; however, these banquets as you may imagine are not free and require a fee for attendance, and you can ask the persons responsible for hosting the events as to the fee charges. You can also inform your local Imam and see if he knows of any single brothers in the community who would be willing to marry you; and request also to have the Imam act as your guardian when the time for marriage comes.
4. Islam recognizes the importance of love in a marriage; and I think the marriage of Prophet Muhammad :saws: to both Aisha :ra: and Khadeeja :ra: are testaments of love and loving. So, from what I understand, love is important in a marriage. However, that doesn't mean that you'll automatically end up in a happy marriage as sometimes in our destiny is written trials and marriage may be one of them. So, I highly recommend that before you marry someone, you pray the Istikhara
prayer which Prophet :saws: taught us to do specific to matters of concern, and deciding whether to go through with a marriage with a prospective partner is definitely a decision in which we should consult Allah and that's exactly what Istikhara
prayer enables you to do.
:wa: (And peace be upon you)