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Have the choices I made lead me to being unmarried and what constitutes appropriate effort in finding a partner ?

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by Askimam.org

My questions pertain to Marraige, taqdeer and the choosing of a partner.

I have begun to have queations regarding how much our own actions or choices play a role in Taqdeer.

I have always wanted to be married but while I have in the past said no to suitors I felt were not appropriate for me, I have had more say no to me for one reason or another.

While I know and believe that everything is and happens according to Allahs will, I wonder if the choises I have made have lead to me being where I am. Can we make choices or decisions that alter our destiny (I ask with regards marraige specifically) for example could i have made the ‘wrong’ decision and declined someone and thus lost out on the person who was meant to be my partner?

What constitutes appropriate ‘effort’ that one is meant to make with regards finding a partner? While I am open to meeting people and so on, unlike others I am not using every possible channel that exists (eg internet, marraige events, agents etc) as I do not feel these are all appropriate or islamically sound. Am I doing myself a disservice due to lack of effort?

In this day and age it is sadly very hard to find a suitable partner, any partner, and even more so one with a suitable level of religiousness (ie deen and its practice). Should one accept a partner lower level of religiousness than one would like for the sake of being married or should one keep looking while taking a very real risk of staying single (in view of ones age and what is socially acceptable as ‘marraigeable).

I am sadly a lot older than I’d like to be and yet still single. This is something I struggle with, any guidance and duas would be appreciated.


In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

Choosing a partner is a big and important decision. It is half of one’s din so there is nothing wrong with taking your time and seeking a husband that has the qualities you are looking for.

At the same time you will need to carefully weigh the qualities you are seeking in your future husband without seeking perfection. That does not mean that you should marry someone you are not satisfied with. It just means that you look at prospective proposals from an angle that you would like yourself to be perceived.

When the right husband comes along, you will know and there are two ways that will help you decide: 1.) Istikhaarah (salah and dua seeking Allah’s help in making a decision) and 2.) Mashwarah (consultation). Make consultation with your elders and for every proposal make istikhaarah.

We advise you to renew your efforts by using all permissible, available methods at your disposal along with making dua that Allah bless you with a pious, loving, loyal husband. As long as you are using the resources at your disposal you are doing everything you can. Those methods which are not permissible or involve something haram should not be used.

Lastly, do not become despondent. Avoid negative thinking. Do not worry that the one you are looking for is not to be found or perhaps you passed him up. What is meant for you will never miss you. Many couples also get married at a later age, so do not consider this to be a big issue as long as you are actively looking. Sometimes finding the right person just takes more time than we want. Continue be patient yet consistent in your dua and efforts.

Allah knows the best time for us and what is good for us. Trust in Him and in His decision for you. Be content with His decree and He will be pleased with you.

Insha-Allah your patience and efforts will be rewarded with a husband that who will be dear and beloved to you.

Sohail ibn Arif,
Student Darul Iftaa
Chicago, USA

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

This answer was collected from Askimam.org, which is operated under the supervision of Mufti Ebrahim Desai from South Africa.

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