How to Destroy Your Marriage
How to Destroy your Marriage: The Dishonest Broker
It is common to hear of marriages in which one of the participants is seeking American citizenship. And, in some (not all) of those marriages, that is the only reason for the marriage. And, in a few of those marriages, the other spouse doesn’t know. Some of these marriages last, and some don’t. But, here I’m talking about someone who is marrying someone to use that person, and s/he doesn’t even realize it him/herself.
How is the fiance using his spouse-to-be? For the peer-pressured ideal of marriage that you so often find among MSA members. Further, for sex.
On one hand, there is a lot of talk among the MSA crowd about the wonderful ideals of marriage, and almost no talk about the struggles of marriage. So, there is this rosy picture among so many young Muslim men and women about marriage.
On top of that, a lot of the young MSA minds are corrupted by the romantic notions from – ready? – Bollywood rubbish. American notions of romantic love are already ridiculous. My favorite example is the film City of Angels.
For the film students, a quick sidebar: in typical American fashion, a deeply philosophical German film (Wings of Desire) gets Americanized into a moody romance. Frankly, I liked the movie a lot.
But, what’s the story: an Angel falls in love with a woman. He gives up his Angel-hood and becomes human. And, what’s the first thing he does? He runs across country, meets her, and they have sex.
A better glance at romance is Jerry Maguire. Here, we have two people who are alone, and are in search of their mate. They use each other to fulfill that purpose. They make rash decisions. They struggle. They doubt. They struggle more. But, in the end, no matter what, they don’t give up. (And now I’ve begun to hint at how to save your marriage).
Now, that was the American notion of romantic love. Bollywood notions of romantic love are crippling. There is little romance, save for the glance and immediate infatuation.
In the Bollywood films, you also have the crazy, insane wedding. Half of India is dancing and singing. The milky-white bride is the most beautiful woman on the planet. The varied-complexioned husband with the stylish Mullet is even more beautiful. And, boy can they both dance. In America, that’s a $50,000 wedding.
So, already we have these two MSA grads, whose minds are corrupted. On one end, there are the wonderful ideals (even going so far as to quote Hadith). On the other end, there is the corruption about notions of romantic love.
But, we have an additional force that is a combination of ideals and a combination of biology: the drive for sex.
In terms of ideals, we have a population of kids who grew up in a society where marketing is geared around the sex drive. Even advertising for headache medicine relies on the sex drive.
On top of that, this population of kids grew up in school systems in which it became progressively more and more common place for all of their friends to not only date, but to be sexually active – so much so, that it’s a norm, just like drinking (alcohol).
But, (not all, but many of) these nice MSA kids were separated from all of that. The programming to have sex is there, and soon, so is the appetite.
Further, I start laughing when, in my Qur’an studies, I ask the young single people what the ayahs mentioning that the husband and wife are garments for each other means? Inevitably, the young guys – in nice, proper MSA language – make allusions to the fact that in marriage, the spouses engage in wonderful unending intimate relations. The guys who are married, and have been married for a while, mention platonic stuff, like: your clothes beautify you (and so does your spouse, and vice versa).
Now, where does that bring us: we have two people talking to each other in very, very idealistic terms about getting married (and to some degree, they definitely should). But, many of these ideals are heavily corrupted.
Add one final, important factor: it is a gross taboo to mention any of the above to your parents. Can you have a frank discussion about romance, marriage, and (especially) sexuality with your parents?
And, the result is that they use each other to fulfill those ideals. Make no mistake: they are using each other. They are being dishonest, and they don’t even realize it.
Then, unfortunately, we often find very, very frustrated, unhappy marriages.