Advice: Letting go of my ex

letting-go

Ed note: Our dear columnists, Miss Sunshine & Shy Desi Boy, are back! Send them your sex, love & relationship questions to advice@loveinshallah.com. And check out our archives to read their previous columns.

Dear Miss Sunshine & Shy Desi Boy,

I am a 27 year old girl, ‘happily married’ with 2 children. I am a prominent Islamic speaker’s daughter. I wear hijab and strive to be a good Muslim. In college, I fell hard for a Non-Muslim guy. We talked for a couple of years, and eventually hooked up a couple of times. With him, when in private, I would remove my hijab. I did not lose my virginity to him (I wanted to share this with my husband); we shared a couple nights together, and those were the best nights I have ever had. To this day, I still think of those amazing nights. 

I know from some Facebook stalking that he is ‘happily married’ as well and his 2 children are born within days of mine. In my college days, I felt like I was a different person. I was tired of ‘being good.’ I was sick of the expectations Islam placed on me. I wanted to rebel. I was also in love with this guy. And he was in love with me too. Love makes you do some crazy things.

However, due to religious issues and general compatibility, we broke it off. He would not convert or change his ways, and I knew I needed to settle down with a Muslim man; I have prayed for guidance since then, and am much more settled now in my religion.

There are days in which I wallow. I am ‘happily married’ in that I love my spouse. I have never told my husband nor my best friends about me & my ex hooking up: I do not want my hubby to judge me or think that I am not his first. I do not want to expose my faults, and want to keep these sins a secret, and pray that Allah forgives me. I know I am my hubby’s first.

I am writing to ask, how do I efficiently move on and not think about my ex? There are months in which I am fine, and other days in which I feel like someone has punched me in the gut, days in which I am sore, days in which I miss the way my ex used to kiss me, the way my ex and me used to laugh together. Am I normal to still think of him from time to time? I feel like a horrible person in that Allah has given me so much, and yet there are days in which I eagerly yearn for the past.I also feel horribly guilty in that if someone were to look at me, they automatically think I am a ‘good’ person, a daughter of an Islamic speaker, and a good Muslim wife & mom. But deep down inside, I have deep, dark secrets.

I need help to move on.

Sincerely,
Preacher’s Daughter

Miss Sunshine replies:

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Advice: Navigating Young (Forbidden) Love

Dear Love, InshAllah,

We are parents of a Muslim college student who met a Muslim boy at school and wish to get to know each other with parental supervision for marriage. The boy told his Pakistani parents he wished us to meet and get to know each other. They first agreed and next day refused and hit him and threatened to have him transfer to another school. We are not Pakistani, however they say that is not the reason, that it is because he is too young. We also wish they were older however we do not want them to commit any sins and are willing to work with them in order for them to have supervision and not lie to us. The boy’s mother caught him on the phone with my daughter, who is out of country doing research for school and taken away his phone and computer and again state will take him out of school. We have suggested our daughter not have any contact with him until parents agree, but this has not happened and if seems the parents forbidding them has made them closer. Our question is should we contact the father and state we were not pleased with this relationship but it is better to work together with our children than to have them lie to us. Any advice on dealing with Pakistani parents who do not want the son to talk to a girl until he is out of college and working and to become a doctor even though the son does not wish to be a doctor.

Sincerely,
Not Pakistani

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Advice: On cleaning up after sex & dating with a disability

Dear Love, InshAllah:

I know this seems like a question everyone already seems to know, but both my wife and I ever really learned the etiquette of sex in terms of how to keep things clean (literally). What I mean is — is there a usual (or better, or sunnah) way to clean-up after relations? I don’t mean ghusl…but if one has relations with their spouse on the bed, how to keep the bed clean? I can’t believe that people wash their sheets every single time after they sleep together. Do some couples just have relations on the bottom sheet, and then sleep atop the top sheet? That would leave some najasa underneath the sheet, but I don’t know if that matters.

Sincerely,
Keeping it clean

Shy Desi Boy replies:

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Advice: On internet flirting & kissing at a wedding

Dear Love, InshAllah:

There’s this Muslim guy I met a few times through work.  He messages me and we chat for a few days, then he vanishes. He says we should meet up but never makes a plan. Is he just stringing me along? Should I block and delete him and move on? I’m not interested in pursuing something that will not culminate in marriage. I should mention that I am no longer in my 20s.

Sincerely,
Is he stringing me along?

Miss Sunshine replies:
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Advice: I didn’t say yes

Dear Love, InshAllah:

I am 29 years old and am under a lot of pressure from my parents to get married. My parents are very conservative. We never spoke about girls, so there was never an opportunity for me to find out what girl they would like for me nor I was able to tell them my thoughts on what I was looking for.

Through a few social contacts of my parents, we met a few families who were looking for a match for their daughters. On a couple of occasions, I liked the girl but my parents did not.

About 3 months ago, my parents and I went to meet another family. The girl was not what I was looking for and I planned to tell my parents immediately after the meeting. I was surprised that my mom insisted on the girl, even using emotional pressure (my mom would say stuff like she feels very lonely, is not feeling well these days, etc.) The pressure was so intense that I was not able to say no – but I did not say yes either.

After a few days, my mom said yes to the family and our engagement was fixed. I was shocked and upset. About 2 months have passed since our engagement, and now the marriage ceremony (nikah) date is planned too. I’ve discussed this with a couple of friends, but they say nothing can be done now.

I do not want to go through with this marriage but I feel I cannot be straightforward as I don’t want to hurt the girl’s feelings or those of her parents or my mom. What should I do?

Sincerely,
I didn’t say yes

Shy Desi Boy responds:

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Advice: Praying for a fresh start

Dear Love InshAllah, 

There’s something that I haven’t been able to talk to anyone about, but I need to talk to someone about this. It’s about our views of purity, and whether we can start our lives fresh if something terrible happens. In our society, we’re told from the time we’re little girls we should save ourselves for our husbands. I want to get married and have a family, and raise my children in a safe, caring environment. I only wish I was so lucky. From the time I was 12, a relative started to abuse me. It started gradually, but it became sexual. Over the next few years, I didn’t say anything. I knew if I did my family would fall apart. Alhamdulillah I was finally able to stop him. I went to college far away from my whole family. I haven’t dated at all in college. I’m waiting to meet a good man, a man I want to spend my life with. But I can’t get over this feeling of guilt, that I’m somehow not worthy of being happy because of everything that’s happened. I wish I could just start my life fresh. I never wanted this to happen. He’s a sick man who should have never done this to any little girl. But I know that many people would judge me if they knew my state, and maybe they would say that I’ll never be able to be a good wife or deserve a good husband anymore. I think this is so unfair. How can our entire life be judged by something that we didn’t even want to happen to us? I was hoping you could tell me what I should do, and how I can lead a good life now. I want to have a normal, happy life, but will any husband accept me if he knows what I’ve been through?

Sincerely,
Praying for a fresh start

Miss Sunshine replies:

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Advice: In Love With a Polytheist

Dear Love Inshallah,

I have been dating a man for a few years now and we’ve been discussing marriage. However, he is of a polytheistic faith. Although he is liberal in his practice, he has a strong belief in God. We have not had any problems with faith interrupting our relationship, since we have the same morals and values and we have been blessed to be very compatible and loving towards one another. He is also very active in taking part in my religious activities, since he is quite aware that I am a practicing (semi-liberal) Muslim.

We have agreed on a nikkah (in addition to other South Asian cultural events). He has also agreed to “convert”. This is where the problem starts to occur. He wants to be able to practice both religions, but will always have his way of worship in his heart, even when “practicing” Islam with me. We have also decided that the children will be taught to practice the Islamic faith in our home. Therefore, is there really a point in him taking the shahada? Isn’t it still zina after marriage, since the marriage is not seen as “valid”? And will he be seen as a shirk, which is said to be completely “unforgivable” in Islam?

I have been lucky enough to have had exposure to different religious events (i.e. church services, pujas, etc.) growing up, so I have no problem attending and respecting his family’s customs and beliefs. I know God is the most gracious and merciful, but are we going down the wrong path?

Sincerely,
In Love with a Polytheist

Shy Desi Boy replies:

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