I was in her office because I needed her help desperately. The lady at the counter had directed me to her, “she is the only one that can help you”. I then took my time for some mental rehearsals of my explanation, because I wouldn’t be able to afford the cost of changing the ticket and traveling the next day. But what was the cause of that problem?
There was a slight delay with Arik in Abuja, and so my arrival at the Lagos airport was a bit late. The check-in counter had closed for the day and the passengers had also started boarding, including my colleagues. It was somehow tense, but the anguish I suffered on seeing the woman official – airport manager of the airline – had provoked greater anxiety in me.
She was my class mate in the university. This is how far her career has taken her. I couldn’t recognize her at first, because she is now older. She was always in my company for students tutorials and I knew her fiance, one bearded brother in Engineering. It was always a moment of academic rigour at the University of Lagos.
As soon as she saw me, she exclaimed in utmost excitement “Saheed!” I was startled at first, and then gradually, the shock gave way to facial recollections “Ahhhh…” I mentioned her name, “Alhamdulillahi, you’re here…” I felt as though the problem was automatically resolved, and of course it was.
But alas, she wouldn’t let go of an old class mate who had once shared her worry in life. She had been longing to talk to someone, a patient listener who knew her well in the days of beauty and academic strength, for that person may understand better the genesis of her mental torture, which those who got to know her in her spent days may not comprehend.
After wasting a few minutes of my time, she eventually helped me out and we reconnected by exchanging mobile numbers. When she later ranged my phone to interact further, I got to know for the first time about the sufferings of Muslim women and ladies who are not married. Loneliness is indeed a pathetic state.
Her fiance had jilted her during her youth service years, and since then, she has not been able to retain the attention of any Muslim male for a reasonable period. She’s comfortable, living in wealth, with her frequent vacations abroad also ensured; but she’s yet to secure a marriage relationship at that age.
This then prompted me to think of millions of others trapped out there – in search of a caring hubby. I share her pain. I feel her pain, because I used to know her to be very descent. Each time she spoke, her trembling voice evoked my tears of pity. I then scratched my head, thought of one or two brothers of her calibre that are plenty with me.
Alas, by 5:00pm yesterday, after delivering the opening ceremony lecture of FUAAB jihad week, i joined the class of big men to eat a bowful of jollof rice as I gladly solemnised her marriage at Ijemo in Abeokuta with a pious, righteous MD of a cooperate institution. Her parents were extremely happy.
Living without a husband is traumatic, indeed; but living with an uncaring, decietful, wicked hubby is more torturous. Can we then advise Muslim ladies to stay off marriage to avoid falling into deceit? With the numerous cases of divorce, should those who are trapped already in torturous marriage still be counseled to seek divorce?
Like my old class mate, there are millions and millions of unmarried women – a divorcee who must return to another marriage to be morally healthy; a widow that must be married out on time to protect her chastity, and the singles who have never been married at 30, 35, 38, 42, 47 years of age.
Believe me, these are the most vulnerable people in the society. They are sad, even when they are laughing. They are crying silently, even if they are rich. They are frequently challenged by their womanity, even if they sinfully chose to quench their aggressive libido on cheap laps.
The truth is that illegal coitus does not quench the natural demand of emotion. As I wrote in ‘Living the life of Prophet Yusuf’, it’s like treating the pinched nerve with aspirin, the pain will only subside momentarily. There’s nothing like having a permanent crown over your head that protects you, gives you honour and makes you feel like a queen in the world of slaves.
Thus, sexual frustration is not all the unmarried suffer. They also lack the comfort of marriage, as much as you can think of – the honour of marriage, protection against the mischief of sympathetic confidants; the listening ear of a man who knows how to console with a legitimate kiss; the soothing balm of a caring hubby, the joy of motherhood and the right to point to the man whose name she answers.
This problem is universal, it’s not an exclusive predicament of Muslim women. Christians, Jews, Hindu women are predominantly single as well. But fortunately for us, as Muslims, we’ve gotten some perfect solutions prescribed for us in the Quran and Sunnah, which are not available else where, with the people of other faiths.
Indeed, we are blessed with three protective and curative ideas that can solve this problem at once, but we only fail to utilize them. We rather keep campaigning against them. They are, namely: (1) Early marriage (2) polygamy and (3) Working together in jamaah. We shall briefly analyse each one of these factors with experience.
The young ladies who identify with MSSN in higher institutions have the prospect of securing the attention of male admirers among their mates of similar orientation. This will not only guaratee them the opportunity of early marriage, but will also protect the prospective couple against the negative society that harbours them.
There have been many successful marriages in this regards, even those who are vehemently opposed to the idea of coming together to work for Islam have greatly benefited from this arrangement through their school’s MSSN. We have also arrived at a stage when marriage can be arranged between parents, early in life, with the consent of their children.
The idea of belonging to an Islamic group will certainly go a long way in resolving this problem. The groups must, nevertheless, be firmly built on moral desciplne and Islamic ethos. The indiscriminate intermingling with the opposite sex should be discouraged, and the process of choosing mates, mentoring them and helping them achieve a happy home should be put in place.
Polygamy is a pristine heritage of our marriage institution that cannot be washed away. Women are generally averse to it though, that aversion is borne out of fear of neglect by the husband, her own selfish desire to monopolize the man, and of course, what she knows of the weakness of her hubby that is hidden to people.
There are times when a woman may have a genuine case for resisting her husband’s desire for a wife, this is a fact of common experience. But the current issue is not just about her hubby’s desire, it is about the pathetic predicament of her fellow Muslimah. Today, of course, a woman’s consent to her husband’s desire for a wife has necessarily become an act of piety, for she assists, thus, in solving a major problem confronting the Ummah.
This world is clock-wise in the dispensation of trials. It may be her turn tomorrow to seek another Muslim woman’s understanding. We pray that she doesn’t suffer the fate of Agbeke – not real name – our friend’s wife, whom I begged to allow her husband marry a 42 year old woman, but she refused, fought and insulted family and friends.
Five years later, our friend died on Asaba road in an auto crash when she was just 33, with four children. We’ve been struggling to have someone rescue her from that traumatic state of widowood without success. Even as a brilliant medical doctor, each time a prospective brother shows up, his wife resists; and each time a single brother appears, his family resists.
A highly successful Muslim Family counselling center in Abuja called by BAYNAKUM, superintended by Dr. ABDUL FATAAH ADEYEMI is a magic-performing center that helps Muslims secure marital partners. This year alone, many are married through the center. I also understand that Khadijah Folake-Sanni Tijani has a similar agenda. May Allah reward those who dry the tears of a lonely chaste Muslimah.
Here is where I stand on the issue of women and ladies who are seriously searching, what’s your view? Let’s help them out. Thanks for reading.
Abu Mazeedatukhayr Bn Saaed