Posted on Jul 30, 2019
Editor's Note: This article is part of a summer series we are producing on "Marriage and Families - A Multifaceted Landscape." We will be covering Prophetic examples of marriages, blended families, questions to ask before marriage, courtship traditions in modern times, the post-divorce landscape, single parenting and other topics from a Muslim-centric perspective. Check into the blog throughout the summer to read our series..
So, you want to get married! Or, maybe you're starting to think about it. Perhaps there is someone you've met or have been introduced to, and you're wondering if the two of you are truly compatible and have what it takes to go the distance and grow/maintain love between you. Have you had discussions with potential mates? What things did you discuss? (Check out a condensed version of Melanie and Ahmed's story below!)
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Remember the @skii Timelines premiere I attended with @katiecouric last week? It got me thinking about my own story 💭Over ten years ago I met Ahmed at the age of 24. I would’ve waited until I was 34. Growing up girls were “groomed” at a young age & almost put on display at weddings and community events in the hopes of catching the eye of someone’s mom. I hated it. Ever the misfit I subconsciously did & said things that would put me out of the fold - probably because I knew I didn’t have the 'pedigree’ these moms were looking for. Regardless, I always knew I wanted to meet someone my way - on my own terms. Thankfully my parents were always supportive & never once pushed me toward marriage. And while people in my community feared I would have a tough time getting married (my God, I was only 24), I never lost faith that God would send me the perfect person at the right time. And that, He did. Ahmed walked into my life at the perfect time - I had just graduated law school & taken the bar exam, and we met just as I embarked on my “eat, pray, love” tour where I found myself traveling all across the east & west coast and finally to the Philippines where I learned so much about myself & where I come from. Of course I put our conversation on hold until I was back home cause I had “me” to tend to. When I was back & ready to get to know him, our connection was instant. He wasn’t afraid to let me shine - he was so enthralled by my life goals & the future I saw for myself. It was the first conversation I had with a guy who didn’t try to stuff me in a box & encouraged me to fly & realize my full potential. How could I say no to that? It was clear that *this* is what I was waiting for - and while I could never articulate it as a single girl looking for love, I immediately knew it when I felt it - cause as they say, when you know, you know. Clearly, he was worth the wait ❤️ We must continue to challenge the conventional norms that restrict us & empower each other to create our own paths, keeping God close along the way. Swipe to watch a clip of the film and find the full video on @skii. What societal pressures are you breaking free from? #SkiiPartner #Timelines #ChangeDestiny
While it's impossible to know everything about a potential spouse or to predict how one may change over the years, knowing what to ask each other can be extremely helpful in figuring out if that person is right for you. We published a post before with a series of questions for couples to ask each other prior to marriage, but we want to direct your attention to this list of 100 questions as well. Why? Because they were developed by Imam Mohamed Majid and Salma Elkadi Abugideiri in their 2014 book, Before You Tie the Knot: A Guide for Couples, specifically keeping Muslims in mind.
Imam Majid is the imam at the ADAMs (All Dulles Area Muslims) Center in Northern Virginia, while Abugideiri is a licensed mental health professional.
Sit down with a potential spouse and ask these questions of each other! Or, if you're seeking to remarry or even are already married and want a healthy check-in with each each other, give these questions a shot! We pray it will help you, insha'Allah
Imam Magid and Salma Abugideiri's 100 Questions for Marriage:
1. What is your concept of marriage?
2. Have you ever been married before?
3. Are you married now?
4. What are your expectations of marriage?
5. What are your goals in life? Long term and short term plans.
6. Identify three things that you want to accomplish in the near future.
7. Identify three things that you want to accomplish, long-term.
8. Why have you chosen me as your potential spouse?
9. What is the role of religion in your life – now?
10. Are you a spiritual person?
11. What is your understanding of an Islamic marriage?
12. What are you expecting of your spouse, religiously?
13. What is your relationship between yourself and the Muslim community in your area?
14. Are you volunteering in any Islamic activities?
15. What can you offer your mate, spiritually?
16. What is the role of a husband?
17. What is the role of a wife?
18. Do you want to practice polygamy?
19. What is your relationship with your family?
20. What do you expect your relationship to be like with the family of your spouse?
21. What do you expect the relationship between your spouse and your family to be like?
22. Is there anyone in your family that lives with you now?
23. Are you planning to have anyone in your family live with you in the future?
24. If for any reason my relationship with your family turns sour, what should be done?
25. Who are your friends? Identify at least three.
26. How did you get to know them?
27. Why are they your friends?
28. What do you like most about them?
29. What will your relationship with them be like after marriage?
30. Do you have friends from the opposite sex?
31. What is the level of your relationship with them – now?
32. What will be the level of your relationship with them after marriage?
33. What type of relationship do you want your spouse to have with your friends?
34. What are the things that you do in your free time?
35. Do you like to have guests in your home for entertainment?
36. What are you expecting from your spouse when your friends come to the house?
37. What is your opinion of speaking other languages in the home that I do not understand? With friends? With family?
38. Do you travel?
39. How do you spend your vacations?
40. How do you think your spouse should spend vacations?
41. Do you read?
42. What do you read?
43. After marriage, do you think that you are one to express romantic feelings verbally?
44. After marriage, do you think that you want to express affection in public?
45. How do you express your admiration for someone that you know – now?
46. How do you express your feelings to someone who has done a favor for you?
47. Do you like to write your feelings?
48. If you wrong someone, how do you apologize?
49. If someone has wronged you, how do you want them to apologize to you?
50. How much time passes before you choose to forgive someone?
51. How do you make important and less important decisions in your life?
52. Do you use foul language at home? In public? With your family?
53. Do your friends use foul language?
54. Does your family use foul language?
55. How do you express anger?
56. How do you expect your spouse to express anger?
57. What do you do when you are angry?
58. When do you think it is appropriate to initiate mediation in a marriage?
59. When there is a dispute in your marriage, religious or not, how should the conflict be resolved?
60. Define mental, verbal, emotional, and physical abuse.
61. What would you do if you felt that you had been abused?
62. Who would you call for assistance if you were being abused?
63. Do you suffer from any chronic disease or condition?
64. Are you willing to take a physical exam by a physician, before marriage?
65. What is your understanding of proper health and nutrition?
66. How do you support your own health and nutrition?
67. What is your definition of wealth?
68. How do you spend your money?
69. How do you save your money?
70. How do you think that your use of money will change after marriage?
71. Do you have any debts now? If so, how are you making progress to eliminate the debt?
72. Do you use credit cards?
73. Do you support the idea of taking loans to buy a home?
74. What are you expecting from your spouse financially?
75. What is your financial responsibility in a marriage?
76. Do you support the idea of a working wife?
77. If so, how do you think a dual-income family should manage funds?
78. Do you currently use a budget to manage your finances?
79. Who are the people to whom you are financially responsible?
80. Do you support the idea of utilizing baby-sitters and maids?
81. Do you want to have children? If not, why?
82. To the best of your understanding, are you able to have children?
83. Do you want to have children in the first two years of marriage? If not, then when?
84. Do you believe in abortion in you family?
85. Do you have children now?
86. What is your relationship with your children, now?
87. What is your relationship with their parent, now?
88. What relationship do you expect your spouse to have with your children and their parent?
89. What is the best method of raising children?
90. What is the best method of disciplining children?
91. How were you raised?
92. How were you disciplined?
93. Do you believe in spanking children? Under what circumstances?
94. Do you believe in public schools for your children?
95. Do you believe in Islamic schools for your children?
96. Do you believe in home-schooling your children? If so, by whom?
97. What type of relationship should your children have with non-Muslim classmates and friends?
98. Would you send your children to visit their extended family if they lived in another state or country?
99. What type of relationship do you want your children to have with all of their grandparents?
100. If there are members of my family that are not Muslim, that are of a different culture or race, what type of relationship do you want to have with them?
(Image sources: Pinterest)
Was this list helpful to you? What questions would you add? Comment below!