Being a single mum means you face a lot of discrimination, being a single Muslim mum means you not only face discrimination and oppression from your own community at times but also from the kuffar who think you are vulnerable and try to influence you with their haram ways. When your back is up against the wall you learn to sink or swim and swimming means fighting back; but sometimes you spend so long fighting others that you forget how to just stop and step back because your first line of defence is to attack. You don’t always have to be the one fighting, because when we don’t Allah swt does. There are so many ways to change a negative into a positive, sometimes all you need to do is smile, forgive, have sabr and make dua for others to be guided to righteousness.
The fighting spirit became so ingrained within me that that became the only thing I knew and I forgot that I have a choice in turning it on or off; I was so used to taking on ‘the world’ that the boundaries between ‘them and me’ became blurry and sometimes I was just fighting my own and NOT the ‘others’. I accept the fault is mine and I haven’t always behaved with wisdom and in an acceptable way; a wise man though, learns from his mistakes and tries to change for the best. People love to kick you when you’re down and pass judgement on you because they only see one side of you and granted, that may not be your best side. That doesn’t mean you don’t have good in you though, and that doesn’t mean they are right; foresight would be an amazing gift but sadly it’s not one we humans possess so yeah, we make mistakes and act out of anger and fear sometimes.
There are many things that I didn’t want in my life, I didn’t want stress and drama, I didn’t want poverty or pain, I didn’t want an abusive cheating ex; but I got them anyways and I had to learn to adapt. This was my life now and no amount of me hiding under the covers would change that; it was time to go out and face this new scary world alone. Fighting change only makes things worse, things do change sometimes and I think maybe it hurts us so much because we never saw it coming in order to prepare for it; how blessed are we then alhamdulillah that Allah swt has given us enough time to prepare for our death and future? My family breaking up was hard, losing my husband was hard; we had built up a life together, made plans, had friends together and now all of that was coming to an end; what I don’t regret though, was fighting for my marriage right until the end. Maybe some people would call me stupid – Allahu aalim, but I never wanted to be in a position where I questioned whether I could have done more to make it work and fought for it harder. It’s funny, people promise to always be around for you, they tell you you won’t have to face it alone, but what they forget is that they have their own lives and won’t be able to help you all the time; you ARE alone when you are a single mum. As time goes by they expect you to be coping and dealing with it, what if though, you are not coping? How long will they see you as the ‘victim’? How many times are they really going to come and physically help you when you are ill or lonely or depressed? No-one breaks their own home for another person and if they have things to do then it will be you who will have to wait.
You can maybe physically prepare for single motherhood if you are lucky – get your finances and home in order, but nothing prepares you for the loneliness that comes with it even if your ex is a brilliant dad. Things were so bad in the end between me and my ex and I was so used to doing everything alone (or so I thought) that I thought being a single mum would be a doddle, what I didn’t factor in though was what I was going to do in certain situations like when I needed beds to be made and I couldn’t ask him because he wasn’t my mahram anymore and no-one else was available to help; in those times I really hated being a single mum and I realised I had taken certain things for granted.
I felt angry towards him for things he done and how he had wronged me but I never expected to have to fight my nafs over him. Part of me wanted to hurt him as he had hurt me and stop him from seeing his children – to poison their minds against him and blame everything on him; but then I controlled myself. It wasn’t fair on the kids or him or me; any woman who tells you that divorce has been positive for her children UNLESS her husband was a true tyrant and oppressor is a LIAR. It messes the child up, they don’t understand why it’s happening and they don’t want it to happen; it’s a very fragile time for a child and it’s so easy for them to get screwed up for life over this. Their loyalties are split, they don’t know which parent to associate themselves with and sadly too often, it’s the mother that pays the price because they lash out at her because she is the only constant thing in their lives usually. I am happy to say that alhamdulillah I tried my best to remain fair and just during these difficult times, I actually encouraged him to spend more time, gave him tips on how to win over the kids, suggested outings and warned him about the dangers of prioritising his girlfriend over his children; subhanallah, due to his own actions today he has lost his children.
It was like I said, very hard to be fair; my gut instincts were telling me that he was cheating and the worst bit about it was he never came clean at all. I think I could understand the lies and secrets somewhat, but when faced with the truth he blatantly lied to my face, even when we both knew the truth. He shut us out of his life for another woman because she offered him the haram options I just couldn’t and just like that 7 years of marriage vanished; no apology, no regard for the mother of his children, he acted like I didn’t exist anymore because he now had someone else – and THAT was the worst bit. I never had real closure, he would avoid talking to me at all, wouldn’t give his number when he changed it or new address; the blow could have been delivered in a softer manner but he gave it to me right in-between the shoulders – in my heart, K.O.
THAT to me, is what you call an unjust husband and unjust father, one who abandons his family and leaves the country without saying goodbye, one who neglects the promises he made to his children, one who beats his wife and abuses her both mentally and physically, telling her she will never make it alone or remarry, who threatens to hit her in front of the kids, who threatens to leave her penniless, who puts her down again and again and then tells her she is weak when she cannot stand. Sometimes I think that wallahi, so many marriages end today due to a lack of sabr, a husband or wife makes one mistake and its treated as if they had an affair or murdered someone. I let a lot go with my ex and once again some people may say I was stupid, but divorce was not something I had ever wanted and so I did my best to avoid it; at one point he WAS a good man and that meant something to me because good men are so rare to come by.
This article is entitled ‘white flag’ because I want to make it known that if I ever did anything to hurt anyone in my life unknowingly due to my anger or fear which has evolved sadly due to my past that I now apologise and ask for forgiveness. I fear Allah swt and I don’t know where I will end up, but I don’t want it to be in the Hellfire because I hurt someone; life is too short wallahi to hurt yourself by staying mad at others, their lives will continue but ours will be torn up by anger and hurt which can lead to hatred; we all deserve peace and happiness in our lives. I also want to say that I forgive the ones who have harmed and hurt me and my family and I ask Allah swt to guide us all insha’Allah and for us all to attain Jannatul Firdous insha’Allah, ameen.