I have already written 7 F’s for a Happy Marriage. Here are some more
It is okay to have individual friends of the same gender but couples must also make effort to have family friends so that they can socialize together. If there is friction being caused by a certain friendship it must not be pursued at the expense of the marriage. Prophet Muhammad (SAW) advised us to choose God fearing people as friends since we tend to follow their way. Friends should be a source of joy and not mischief.
Couples that do not laugh together have to work on sharing some fun times. The Prophet (SAW) was known to play with his wives. A simple walk in the park can add much spark to the relationship. Taking up a sport together or watching clean funny movies is another way of sharing a laugh.
It is commanded by Allah that we be faithful to our spouses. Adultery is a capital crime in Islam that is punishable by death. However there are various forms of unfaithful behavior prevalent among some Muslims. The most common form is maintaining friendships with the opposite sex over the boundaries set by Islam, and the misgivings of the spouse.
Usually when we are angry or displeased the tendency is to not play fair. We try to convince ourselves that since we have been wronged it is okay to be unjust in our behavior and our statements. Allah states in the Qur’aan do not be unjust under any circumstances, even if they be your enemy, and here we are talking about our life partners and the parent of our children. To use words such as “never” and “always” when describing the behavior of the partner is unfair and puts the other on the defensive.
One of the most common points of contention in marriages is money. Experts tell us that 80 percent of marital conflicts are about money. It is therefore highly recommended that the couple put serious time and effort in developing a financial management plan that is mutually agreeable and is reviewed every six months or so. Preparing a budget together is also a helpful and wise way to handling household finances. It should be remembered that the wife’s money in Islam is hers to do with as she pleases and therefore should not be considered family income unless she chooses to contribute it to the family.
Parenting can be a stressful experience if the parents are not well informed. This in turn can put extra pressure on the marriage. Sometimes couples are naive about the changes that come in the lifestyle. This can cause in some cases depression and in some resentment and misunderstandings. One golden rule that must always be the guide is; that family comes first. Whenever there is evidence that the family is not happy or not our first priority it is time to assemble at the kitchen table and discuss with open hearts and mind.
Prophet Muhammad (SAW) stated that Allah forgives all sins if we repent but not those we have committed against others i.e. hurt their feelings unless the person we have hurt forgives first. Couples are sometimes very careless when it comes to their spouse’s feelings, they take them for granted and assume that the other knows what they mean. It is surprising that people are more sensitive and courteous to strangers than they are to their loved ones. One must be ever vigilant and careful that they do not hurt the feelings of their spouses and if they invariably do, they should apologize as soon as possible. Since one does not know when someone they love will leave this world, is it not better to make amends when we have the time?
Marriage in Islam is a partnership and not bondage or slavery. To consider the wife one’s property is alien to Islamic concept of husband and wife role. The team spirit is enhanced and not curtailed when members of the team are free to be themselves. Freedom in the common western sense is to be free to do as one pleases or to be selfish. On the contrary, to allow freedom to one’s spouse is to be considerate of their needs and to recognize their limitations.
A sure way to keep romance in marriage is to flirt (only) with your spouse. Many successful marriages have maintained a youthful demeanor in their marriages by adopting special names for each other and secret communication styles.