Is saying that one feels angry and humiliated by a confidant in being unable to get married after many years a violation of the imperative to be patient?
Would it be true to say that the dignity of suffering is to bear it in silence and solitude and that to speak would only be for the means of remedy with faith in God as the ultimate doer?
I recognize the higher station is to be content and grateful to God for suffering as a means to personal growth and paradise. I think more should be done by local imams and western ulema to tell Anglophone Muslim women today of fertile age today i.e. Gen Z that they should not aspire to “empowerment” and “equality” in a female-first and feminist society that only benefits elite men in the devaluing of labor.
Thank you for your question. In short, yes, complaining to people and feeling angry and ashamed are not true signs of patience.
Abu Sa’id al-Khudri (Allah be pleased with him) reported that some people from among the Ansar begged from the Messenger of Allah, (Allah bless him and give him peace) and he gave them. They again begged him and he again gave them, until when what was in his possession was exhausted. He said, “Whatever good (riches, goods) I have, I will not withhold it from you. He who refrains from begging Allah safeguards him against want. And he who seeks sufficiency, Allah would keep him in a state of sufficiency, and he who shows patience, Allah would grant him the power to be patient and none is blessed with an endowment better and greater than patience.” [Muslim]
How to Complain
We are all human beings and we have troubles. There is no question that tribulations can be very difficult and we occasionally need someone to talk to. The prophets were our examples in this regard, as they complained only to Allah, and were satisfied with this. Why should someone complain to someone who cannot take away his problem?
Allah has told us the story of Prophet Yaqub (Allah be pleased with him) in the Quran. He said when he was told that his favorite son died, “He cried, ‘No! Your souls must have tempted you to do something ˹evil˺. So ˹I am left with nothing but˺ beautiful patience! I trust Allah will return them all to me. Surely He ˹alone˺ is the All-Knowing, All-Wise. He turned away from them, lamenting, ‘Alas, poor Joseph!‘ And his eyes turned white out of the grief he suppressed. They said, ‘By Allah! You will not cease to remember Joseph until you lose your health or ˹even˺ your life.’ He replied, ‘I complain of my anguish and sorrow only to Allah, and I know from Allah what you do not know.’” [Quran, 12:86]
In the Quran, see the story of Maryam (Allah be pleased with her): “Then the pains of labour drove her to the trunk of a palm tree. She cried, ‘Alas! I wish I had died before this and was a thing long forgotten!’ So a voice reassured her from below her, ‘Do not grieve! Your Lord has provided a stream at your feet. And shake the trunk of this palm tree towards you, it will drop fresh, ripe dates upon you. So eat and drink, and put your heart at ease. But if you see any of the people, say, I have vowed silence to the Most Compassionate, so I am not talking to anyone today.’” [Quran, 19:22-26]
Prophet Ayyub also suffered from great trials during this life, and Allah tells us about him in the Quran: “And ˹remember˺ when Job cried out to his Lord, ‘I have been touched with adversity, and You are the Most Merciful of the merciful.’” [Quran, 21:83)
As for your views on gender roles, I don’t necessarily disagree with you, but I urge you not to focus on the faults of others and what should or should not be done. Focus on what benefits you now, and what you can do to make a difference in the lives of others. For example, I told my son the other day that money doesn’t make one happy, and he responded that it does if you give it away. I was touched by this. We should search for happiness, blessings, and success in what we can do, and in how we can do for others. Patience remains the key.
Please see these links as well:
How Can I Hope for Marriage Being Middle-Aged?
How Do I Get Rid of My Desperation to Get Married?
May Allah give you the best of this world and the next.
[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqida, fiqh, tajweed, tafsir, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She later moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.