Islamic marriage advice and family advice

I received a proposal but I am afraid of taking a decision


Salams .

I am a 21 yr old female . A dentist by profession coming from an intellectual family alhamdulillah. The problem with me is over the years I have started feeling I am very dark  esp. when I go into a crowd of beautiful girls, as a result I feel very inferior and cry every night this makes my parents very unhappy.

In my college,  I was always a topper but still felt very inferior because of my looks, even many guys commented on  looks which made me feel low. Alhamdulillah, I always wear hijab and pray 5 times daily.

The time has come and thou I get few proposals, I  felt ugly and reject it. I am very jealous of my cousins who are far more beautiful and happily married at my age.

My mom also has been abused by my dad for her looks inspite of her piety and education. I decided not to get married as I only feel hurt about myself everytime.  Recently,  I developed type 2 diabetes at this young age which added to the worry of my parents and me.

Few months back my cousin proposed me through his parents and I told him about all my problems,  he accepted me as I am and says wants to marry me. But the problem here is his financial status and education which is much lower than us and the problems of close relation marriage. I am confused if I should forget this matter and continue my life since my parents hesitate to accept it or accept the proposal and adjust to the prevailing problems. Considering the fact that I too like him thou we don´t meet and he comes from a religious background.  I have done isthikara but couldn´t get any reply.

jazakallah khair


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13 Responses »

  1. As salamu alaykum, sister Faryas,

    My personal opinion is that I don´t like the idea of cousins marrying, I grew up with cousins and here we say, cousin brother or cousin sister, and we were like brothers and sisters, then for me it is a shock to even think about it, but I understand that in other cultures is almost normal despite the genetic problems that come attached to this kind of relationship.

    Related to your istikhara, I think you have received an answer, you have felt the guidance, you have said the following: "Considering the fact that I too like him" this shows you have an inclination towards him, then follow your Heart, insha´Allah.

    We all have ideas of which can be the best couple or partner, but at the end all of it are just ideas, financial status, social status, ...if it is too much the difference that can create a conflict as he doesn´t know how to behave, or he is rude, or he is not working, or something bad, ...but I´ve seen people with careers, same cultural and financial backgrounds and sometimes they are a good marriage and sometimes they aren´t, but even having a good marriage you will have struggles, then I would choose to feel it inside and do my best, insha´Allah.

    Your jealousy is inside the normal limits, don´t worry about it. Related to the image you have of yourself, you are right it has to do a lot with your father´s behaviour towards your mother, it would be good if you look for counselling to heal it from roots, when we are little we are so vulnerable that if someone says something wrong to someone we love, we take it by heart, we make it ours; you felt your mother´s dissapointment as yours, difficult situation for a little girl that believes that the most big of this world are mum and dad, but I believe we can heal all those painful memories with Allah(swt) help and lots of Love and Respect towards ourselves, insha´Allah.

    You can make of yourself the woman you are called to be, being the best for Allah(swt), for yourself and for the rest of the world, insha´Allah.

    Related to your health problem, I believe you are in doctors´hands, I am sured they have prescribed you a proper diet and exercise, insha´Allah.

    All my Unconditional Love, Respect and Support,

    María Editor


    Sister he sounds like a good match. I think let your dad make this decision for you. If he finds him suitable for you then inshAllah he should go ahead with this. Education and material things can be gained with time inshAllah.

  3. Asalamoalaikum sister,
    Thank you for writing to us. I can understand how difficult it may be for you to accept certain aspects of yourself: we all have something we’d like to change regarding ourselves. However, we shouldn’t let it affect us so much that we feel it is breaking down our confidence. In addition, we should always thank Allah swt for what we have as things could have been worse, right? I know this is easier said than done but not un-accomplishable. There will always be someone, prettier, richer, happier, etc than you so remember sister we have to be happy with what Allah swt has given us. I personally find many tan girls very attractive. You will also see that in today’s Western society, most Caucasians (whites) go to tanning spas to get that sun-kissed glow that most Middle-eastern and South-Asian people have, so you are blessed! It’s just a matter of changing perspectives.

    I feel that your insecurity and inferiority complex may also stem from your parents problems: the fact that your father criticized your mother in regards to her looks. Keep in mind sister, that although looks do matter, they fade with time and whoever will marry you for your looks, is not doing so for the right reason. When your looks will fade, what should he do then: leave you?: of course not. That in itself is a blessing that you can distinguish between sincere people and people who are just after you because of superficial beauty.

    I am also sorry to hear about your illness, may Allah swt give you and your family the strength to overcome and battle with this illness, amen.

    In regards to your cousin and your liking towards him, I find that the reason you may be so drawn to him is because you seem rather lonely right now. As a result, he is someone who reached out to you and showed you he cares and understands. Sometimes, when we are upset or depressed, we mistake our feelings of compassion or sympathy for something like liking or love. It happens a lot when people “break up” and find a re-bound—someone they like right after their initial relationship and it’s because they are lonely at that time and want to move on. Similarly, your liking towards your cousin may be because you are lonely and he is able to understand you, or at least that’s how he is displaying himself.

    I personally suggest that you should perform istikhara again and see where things lead you, but also your own sense when making a decision. Cousin marriages, although being halal in Islam are not recommended as much as they sometimes cause problems after marriage, such as defected children. Also, you are stating that your cousin is not stable financially so these are all things that you should keep in perspective before making a life long decision like marriage. In a nutshell, do istikhara one last time, ask Allah swt for guidance and if you can tell your family your intentions and get their advice also. Do not follow only your heart here; take your mind along with you also. Then leave the rest to Allah swt and see where He takes you.

    Lastly, if things do not work out with your cousin, do not get hopeless. One Allah swt closes one door for us; He opens another one, so not despair. InshAllah you will marry and stay very happy.

    -Helping Sister

    • Lastly, if things do not work out with your cousin, do not get hopeless. When Allah swt closes one door for us; He opens another one, so do not despair. InshAllah you will marry and stay very happy.

      I am so sorry for the constant typos, many times I type my response from my cell-phone and the auto-type feature is on and automatically assumes words for me. I will more cautious next time, inshAllah.

  4. salaam aleykum sister,

    I'm sorry to see that you feel down about yourself due to your looks. I have to say its surprises me a bit. I am a convert and one of the things i really dislike about how the non-muslims live is that they are so concerned by their looks. they let their looks affect their feelings and emotions and level of happines. Girls wear tons of make-up and the shortest and tightest skirts and shirts and the highest heels possible, just to be good looking. They even get plastic surgery sometimes. Where is the female emancipation? where is the self worth?

    As muslimas we are different, or at least thats how i personally experience it and how i believe it should be. We dont care about our looks, but we focus on our inner self, our inner beauty, our skills as a woman. And hey, you are a dentist, so you must have very good skills and be really qualified! If a patient has a tooth ache, do you really think he cares what you look like? you can be beautiful as a prinses, but it will get you no where, especially not in the eyes of your Creator, who cares about the good works you do, the effort you make and the sincerity with which you treat others.

    And remember also my sweet sister, that if you are content and satisfied inside yourself AND if you work on your iman, you will shine your inner beauty to your outside. Since i converted, people tell me i changed, im able to shine more. My looks didnt change, actually they only got worse from a fashionable point of view, since i started to wear hijab and mode modest covering clothes. So my shinyness cant come from my looks, but from my feelings inside.

    Work on mental health by strengthening your iman by knowledge and prayer. work on your physical health by exercising. I read you recently developed DM II (diabetes type 2). Is this becoz you have a weight problem? if so then exercising and a good diet will help you in getting more healthy AND looking better. ask your family and friends for help and depend on Allah swt to assist you in all you do.

    Sister, look at the things you have, the oppurtunities you get, not at the things you dont have. you have a good intellect, a good carrier ahead of you, you are sooooo young my dear, there is no need to hurry into a marriage. I advice you not to marry a cousin, i am personally not so much for marrying family, just like another sister commented before me. Its family, you grew up knowing each other. Its also dangerous, becoz consanguinity can be harmful for any future kids. also in case something goes wrong between you (God forbid) then you have not only a problem between you and your husband, but also a problem in your family, you might tear your family apart along with your marriage.

    Considering your age and considering that you feel so bad right now, i think now is not the time to marry. Its the time to work on your mental and physical health first. Dont thing marriage solves these things. you need to solve them before you get married. Get strong and boast your iman before you take the HUGE responsability of marriage and starting your own family.

    and lastly, you are beautiful my dear, i love you for the sake of Allah swt.

    salaam aleykum

    first of all jazakallah dear sisters for your wonderful replies and inspirations. may ALLAH reward u all for helping a muslim in need ameen...prayers.
    i submitted this post few months back and right now it has progessed to full blown diabetes:
    ( extreme tiredness and i stopped working.
    pls pray for my health dear sisters in islam.
    i believe this is a test from ALLAH and bear it patiently with prayers. but at times i give in and get aralysed with negatve emotions.
    regarding isthikara i did a second time and the next day i got a dream of both of us in a park?i am not able to interpret this sisters.?
    thankyou sister maria for the inspirational post about beauty.
    regarding cousins our parents are quite orthodox so we never grew up knowing each other hardly met in family functions.....
    thanku ash for the short and sweet response..:)
    my problem is over the months i told him all my problems and he is ready to support me cos in his famil criteria they just need a pious muslim educated girl.

    thanku helping sister for your beautiful summary bout complexion..
    and lastly bot not the least thanku sis hajar for rminding me of my blessings.. i almost forgot my carrer after i started suffering.
    my problem is i am afraid of revealing anyone of this problem since they wont accept me. but since i have shared this situation of mine with him and he doesnot mind as he is being pious muslim i find hard to forget him and move on...still my mind always sinks into confusion???
    in our culture girls get married at 20 .so i am in a delay rite nw i am22..salams..pls reply sisters....thank u so much

    • Walaykum as salam, Sister Farya,

      I am sure you are well taken care in medical hands, you have to be quite straight now to have a normal life, thank God you are patience, this will help you, Alhamdulillah.

      You want to marry him, he wants to marry you, I don´t see the point, have you talked to your parents seriously about it?

      Does he know you want to marry him?

      When you see a negative thought showing a peak, put it on a side looking for refuge in Allah(swt) learn a dua to recite when you feel down, learn the Names and Attributes of Allah (swt), there are many tools to improve your emotional situation, Alhamdulillah.

      I will have you in my prayers, insha´Allah.

      From Heart to Heart,

      María Editor

      • I think these will be helpful for you, you may know them already, insha´Allah. 1) perform prayers regularly; 2) recite morning and evening supplications; 3) start everything in Allah’s Name and seek Allah’s Protection and Refuge before taking a bath; 4) put your trust in Allah, invoke Him always and keep away from sins. With time he will follow you, insha´Allah.

        There is a Sunnah tradition from Muhammad of reading them over the sick or before sleeping and they are also considered a healing. The al-Mu'awwidhitayn (Arabic المعوذتين), sometimes translated as "Verses of refuge", is an Arabic term referring to the last two suras (chapters) of the Qur'an viz. al-Falaq and an-Nas

        “Put your hand on the part of your body where you feel pain and say ‘Bismillah (in the name of Allah) three times, then say seven times,

        A`udhu bi `izzat-illah wa qudratihi min sharri ma ajid wa uhadhir (I seek refuge in the glory and power of Allah from the evil of what I feel and worry about).”

        A`udhu bi kalimat Allah al-tammah min kulli shaytanin wa hammah wa min kulli `aynin lammah (I seek refuge in the perfect words of Allah, from every devil and every poisonous reptile, and from every evil eye)’”

        Allahumma Rabban-nas, adh-hibil-ba's, washfi, Antash-Shafee, la shifa'a, ilia shifa'uk, shifa'an la yughadiru saqaman. (O Allah, Lord of mankind! Remove this disease and cure him. You are the Great Curer, there is no cure but through You that leaves behind no disease.)" (Bukhari and Muslim)

        I would highly recommend you to study the Names and Attributes of Allah(swt), you will feel what I mean when you begin to study them, insha´Allah.

        I hope will be of help for you, insha´Allah

        From Heart to Heart,
        María Editor

    YES SISTER MARIA.his parents enquired my parents about it.i expressed my interest too..
    but my parents are prevaricating things not giving proper replies:(
    they dont feel secure about his financial status .and the problems of close relation marriage thus making me confused all over_:( salams sister

    • Wasalams, Sister Farya,

      Keep praying and you will see how all the obstacles melt in the way, don´t try to direct things towards any direction, unless your parents ask you properly about your cousin, ask for Allah(swt) guidance for the best for all of you, this way you let the way open without mental interferences, he maybe the man or he may not be, only Allah(swt) know.

      What I would love you to do is to think possitive about you, yes you have diabetes, but you Alhamdulillah are alive and today people can live with it with no problems, and you are very young and strong minded then give yourself the opportunity to heal to, insha´Allah. Then once you accept this is a fact and you don´t have to feel fearful about it, you should be able to understand that the person that will be with you must know about it, if they don´t accept it, don´t get scared about it, what is waiting for you will be better, insha´Allah.

      In your case what I see the most urgent is to find a proper medical treatment to increase your strength and recovering your normal life, and what I would do is to pray consciously and get closer to Allah(swt) work on silent and be loving to your mother and father, everyday a bit more, today a nice loving word, tomorrow, a hug, the next day, I love you, the other one cheek to cheek, need to get used to love and be loved, they don´t know how to show their emotions, but you are still on time to teach them, make take years but it will deserve the effort, with both of them, and will heal a lot inside of yourself, insha´Allah.

      Tell your parents to be straight to you and tell you exactly yes or no, this way you won´t be between two worlds, and you will be able to focus your energies instead of having your mind wondering about possibilities that don´t exist.

      I hope this helps, insha´Allah.

      From Heart to Heart,

      María Editor

  7. SALAMS,
    its been a long time since this was posted so i dont know if ill get a reply:(
    however, after my parents agreed and it was going fine for the past three months..

    now my mother after thorough search in the internet says to cancel the engagement due to consanguinity.:(:(:(
    by now i have already got very attached to him though i dont mean we have dated and all that alhamdulillah,but i always feel he ll be the right partner because i have shared my health issues and he is a very pious and good guy. sisters, i am torn in taking decision.i believe it is the will of ALLAH to grant us a child should i agree to break off the engagement for this reason??assuming that its very very hard to forget him and even get a person as good as him:(

    i need ur humble replies sisters...

    jazakallah khair


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