"I Do": Manoeuvring Relationship between Husband and Wife

by Helmy Sa'at

Boy meets girl. 

They fall in love and get married. 

And, they live happily ever after.

In a nutshell, that is what we have come to learn about marriage. However, this is a reductive view of any relationship. A relationship between two individuals does not hit the brickwall upon marriage as it is constantly evolving. Any loving and committed relationship needs to be nurtured over one’s lifetime by actively involving one’s spouse and not just rely on that fleeting initial glance that quickened your heartbeat.

So, what happens after the wedding followed by the honeymoon and living together in the same household? Just like any other relationship, it is about your collective effort as a husband and wife. You need to continuously pay attention not only to your own needs, but also your partner’s emotional needs. This contributes to the strong foundation of building a healthy family unit anchored by two individuals who have chosen each other to walk the path of life till Jannah together, inshaAllah.

Partnership, Not Ownership

It is fundamental to understand that marriage is first and foremost not about serving a skewed arrangement that largely benefits the husband. Both parties need to comprehend that it is about complementing and supporting one another. A wife deserves an equal amount of love, respect and attention from her husband and vice versa.

As evident in the following verse in the Quran, Allah SWT states that:

وَلَهُنَّ مِثْلُ الَّذِي عَلَيْهِنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ ۚ وَلِلرِّجَالِ عَلَيْهِنَّ دَرَجَةٌ ۗ

“Women have rights similar to those of men equitably, although men have a degree of responsibility above them.” 

[Surah Al-Baqarah 2:228]

Communication: Listen, Not Just Hear

Communication is the cornerstone of a strong, healthy and loving relationship. It is not just about you all the time albeit your spouse is your most trusted sounding board in life. You have the responsibility to ensure that it is equitable whereby the opportunity to share and voice concerns, problems and feelings is a two-way street without the fear of reprisal.

Good communication is not just about automated reciprocal responses such as ‘I hear you’, but to be sincere in the act of listening itself. Then, working as a unit towards resolving an issue or addressing a concern that might have been overlooked by you, as a partner in your marriage. 

Moreover, openness in your marriage is achieved with constant encouragement to be vulnerable and honest about each other’s feelings and even troubles. Always start by acknowledging each other’s feelings and practise empathy.

There will be times where disagreements arise. It is inevitable. It is vital to stay calm and keep the channel of communication open. It is not a weakness to accept one’s mistake and seek forgiveness besides working to rectify the situation to avoid it being repeated. Always be mindful of words uttered during a heated exchange.

Never compare your partner with others. It is not only hurtful, but a display of gross ignorance when it comes to accepting and understanding each individual’s unique personality, characteristics and preferences.

Do You Still Love Me?

As part of the global ummah, we are so busy with work that we tend to forget to prioritise our emotional needs on top of our spouse’s feelings. Being pulled in many different directions is no excuse to neglect our spouses emotionally, on the daily. Do not be embarrassed to express yourself. Articulate your love and appreciation with simple words: I love you. It is reassuring to hear those words. It does not cost a cent to utter such loving words which stem from love for each other already flowing in your veins. 

Pair it with the following: Kiss your wife either before leaving home from work or upon arriving home from work, or both! It is sunnah. Who else to better emulate other than the Prophet ﷺ himself?

Hold My Hands

It is not possible or realistic to spend every waking minute together. However, one of the best opportunities is to perform prayers together, in particular the Fajr or Subuh prayer. It is the perfect chance to spend some quality time in addition to performing part of our daily religious duty before heading off to work, or executing other familial tasks of the day. 

Moreover, take the time to go on dates according to your availability. At least once a week, if not once a month, as a start. This is beyond sharing a table for meals, but to truly allocate a few hours to spend quality time together, away from work and home responsibilities. A chance to reconnect.

However, do not be pressured. It does not have to be a grand gesture for every date, or indulging in luxury such as eating dinner at a five star restaurant which could burn a hole in your pocket. More importantly, engage in activities that both of you would enjoy. It could be anything and everything, from attending an art or cooking class to engaging in sports to destress. Vary the activity on a weekly or monthly basis to avoid monotony.

A Marriage Is Not An Island

Your marriage has been blessed by families and friends. They also form a support system in times of need. 

As narrated by Aishah:

حَدَّثَنَا أَبُو هِشَامٍ الرِّفَاعِيُّ، حَدَّثَنَا حَفْصُ بْنُ غِيَاثٍ، عَنْ هِشَامِ بْنِ عُرْوَةَ، عَنْ أَبِيهِ، عَنْ عَائِشَةَ، قَالَتْ مَا غِرْتُ عَلَى أَحَدٍ مِنْ أَزْوَاجِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم مَا غِرْتُ عَلَى خَدِيجَةَ وَمَا بِي أَنْ أَكُونَ أَدْرَكْتُهَا وَمَا ذَاكَ إِلاَّ لِكَثْرَةِ ذِكْرِ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم لَهَا وَإِنْ كَانَ لَيَذْبَحُ الشَّاةَ فَيَتَتَبَّعُ بِهَا صَدَائِقَ خَدِيجَةَ فَيُهْدِيهَا لَهُنَّ ‏.‏ قَالَ أَبُو عِيسَى هَذَا حَدِيثٌ حَسَنٌ غَرِيبٌ صَحِيحٌ ‏.‏

“I was not jealous of any wife of the Prophet as I was jealous of Khadijah, and it was not because I saw her. It was only because the Messenger of Allah mentioned her so much, and because whenever he would slaughter a sheep, he would look for Khadijah’s friends to gift them some of it.”

[Jami’ at-Tirmidhi, no. 2017]

Thus, it is a sunnah to treat your wife’s family and friends well, and vice versa.

Marital relationship is a blessing. In marriage, we are fortunate to have found a partner, therefore we have to be appreciative and strive to protect and nurture it over a lifetime.

وَمِنْ ءَايَـٰتِهِۦٓ أَنْ خَلَقَ لَكُم مِّنْ أَنفُسِكُمْ أَزْوَٰجًا لِّتَسْكُنُوٓا۟ إِلَيْهَا وَجَعَلَ بَيْنَكُم مَّوَدَّةً وَرَحْمَةً ۚ إِنَّ فِى ذَٰلِكَ لَـَٔايَـٰتٍ لِّقَوْمٍ يَتَفَكَّرُونَ

And one of His signs is that He created for you spouses from among yourselves so that you may find comfort in them. And He has placed between you compassion and mercy. Surely in this are signs for people who reflect. 

[Surah Ar-Rum 30:21]

Marriage is a conversation that lasts a lifetime. Always remember that you and your spouse are the determiners of your marital happiness.

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37 Comments

  1. Amar

    A friend referred me on this article. A good read and very informative. COVID-19 has destroyed relationships but with this article, it gives hope and another perspective. Support is the vital factor to determine he or she goes. Love the article

    Reply
    • Helmy Sa'at

      Salam Amar,
      Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us. What other kind of content would you like to see more on our website? Your suggestions are greatly appreciated and we hope to create better content for our community.

      Reply
      • Azly

        Good read for personal reflection. Thank you for the article

        Reply
      • AbdulKhabir

        Very Good article.We have to be continually reminded of what is really important in our Marriages and family relationships. Alhamdulillah. AbdulKhabir

        Reply
        • Helmy Sa'at

          Salam AbdulKhabir,
          Thank you for your feedback. We’re really glad you found it perceptive. What other kind of content would you like to see more on our website? Your suggestions are greatly appreciated. Do not forget to share this article with your family and friends.

          Reply
    • Sachin Tanna

      A good reminder on married life, jusy reminded me of what i was not doing, thanks a lor

      Reply
      • Helmy Sa'at

        Salam Sachin,
        Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us. Do share this article with your family and friends.

        Reply
    • KM

      very good message
      llike it verymuch

      Reply
    • KM

      Masha Allah very good message
      llike it verymuch
      | will refer itmy friends also

      Reply
  2. Ameer

    Very insightful writeup and tips on how do we better manage/maintaining our ongoing relationship with our spouse and building a more cohesive relationship towards Allah SWT. Alhamdulillah

    Reply
    • Helmy Sa'at

      Salam Ameer,
      Thank you for your feedback. We’re really glad you found it insightful. Don’t forget to share this article with your family and friends.

      Reply
  3. yayah

    well written and relatable. ur partner is a keeper if he/she stays during ur difficult time. marriage is indeed a conversation that last a lifetime.

    Reply
    • Helmy Sa'at

      Salam Yayah,
      Thank you for your feedback. We’re really glad you found it relatable. What other kind of content would you like to see more on our website? Your suggestions are greatly appreciated. Don’t forget to share this article with your family and friends.

      Reply
    • Lulu

      ربنا هب لنا من أزواجنا وذرياتنا قرة أعين

      Reply
  4. Karl

    sterling article. im a non muslim and this article was shared to me by a friend. we often dismissed our partner’s emotional needs and i do agree that it is a collective effort. saying “i love you” is the most difficult phrase to some.

    Reply
  5. Akbar

    This article resonates with me. Excellently written and intuitive article.

    Reply
    • Helmy Sa'at

      Salam Akbar,
      Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us. What other kind of content would you like to see more on our website? Your suggestions are greatly appreciated and we hope to create better content for our community.

      Reply
  6. NA

    A well written article that are so close to me. Yes, partnership not ownership. Yes, communications. Thank you for the article, that reminds me to not forget to say I love you to my hubby. Sometimes we just tend to take things for granted. Thumbs up to the writer!

    Reply
    • Helmy Sa'at

      Salam NA,
      Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us. What other kind of content would you like to see more on our website? Your suggestions are greatly appreciated and we hope to create better content for our community. Do not forget to share this article with your family and friends.

      Reply
  7. Nana Md

    You deserve thanks for your commitment to bringing the public such vital information.

    Reply
  8. Rahman

    Extraordinary article. Very close to the heart and relatable. Thank you for the reminder!

    Reply
  9. Sharifah Naj

    Thanks for the article, contents a lot of truth and heartful feeling with good advice, sometimes we don’t see the importance in simple things, most import is the sincerity and being honest, take that out of live and there is no value to love

    Reply
    • Helmy Sa'at

      Salam Sharifah,
      Thank you for your feedback. We’re really glad you found it insightful. What other kind of content would you like to see more on our website? Your suggestions are greatly appreciated.

      Reply
  10. Lannie

    It takes two hands to clap. I think it also takes a great deal of effort and courage to walk down the path and live together. No matter what lies ahead, both must be strong enough to face what life throws at you both together or individually.

    Reply
    • Helmy Sa'at

      Salam Lannie,
      We really appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts with us. What other kind of content would you like to see more on our website? Your suggestions are greatly appreciated.

      Reply
  11. Mayama Kesselly

    This article really touched my heart After reading it, I have learned some important aspect about marriage that will help improve my relationship. Thanks for the informations.

    Reply
    • Helmy Sa'at

      Salam Mayama,
      We really appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts with us. Do not forget to share this article with your family and friends.

      Reply
      • Muhammad Hussain Bati

        Ma sha Allah very good

        Reply
  12. Muhammad Hussain Bati

    Ma sha Allah

    Reply
  13. Mohammed nayeemuddin

    Assalam walekum mashallah very nice AP Muslim through please you can do with continue and supply all peoples male and feelings Assalamu Alaikum for the office

    Reply
  14. Usman

    السلام علیکم محترم

    Reply
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