How to go about it without mudslinging.
When divorce became legal in Islam, it is believed that it is the worst thing that became legal. -Naturally, because it is the breaking up of a home. However, if staying in it becomes worse than breaking it, then it needs to be done. However, there are nice ways to go about ugly things too.
In the Holy Quran the word ‘ahsan’ (favor) is used, while talking about it. Meaning, that when something as unpleasant as divorce is being considered, do it with gifts, favors and with fairness. So, I’ll leave out the ugly parts. I just want to say that naturally, feelings are bruised and hurt all round. At such times it also becomes natural to want to say bad things about ‘the other party’. This is where I disagree. Here, I really believe that no bad words need to be said. Mudslinging is not the way to go about it. Frankly, it is no one elses’ business, why it happened. It is a painful enough thing for the families concerned, without involving others in it also. When people ask you “oh, but why?!” Just say “it seems it was not meant to be.” And pick up another topic with that person. Avoid saying bad things about anyone. Those same people who were ‘perfect’ and ‘wonderful’ are suddenly the meanest, nastiest, cruelest and worst people on earth!
The fact is that no one is perfect. The other fact is that two good persons may not be right for each other. Also, there were ‘sahabas’ (companions of Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), who went through divorce. It was never an issue for anyone in those times. The prophet also married a divorced girl named Zainab, and many others did so too. It was never an issue. Why should it become an issue now?
If there are children, it is even more important not to do mudslinging. You are talking about your children’s father, or the children’s mother, – so it is vital to talk well about the person in front of the children. I know it would be very tough thing to do, but keep the partner (or let me say ‘ex’ partners’) respect and ‘izzat’ in front of the children.
Your decision is taking away the children’s home – do not take away their parent as well. It is important not to stand between the parent and your child. Let the child go and meet their father or mother as many times as they wish. Be nice. I’m sure, Allah will reward you, in ways that only He can.
Remember that ‘gheebat’ or speaking ill about a person behind his or her back is considered to be the worst thing on earth. It has been likened to the eating of your dead brothers’ meat! So, in the case of divorce, how does it become ‘okay’ to do it? No. Don’t. In our society Imran Khan is the best example. He has never spoken against both the wives he has divorced. Even today, they back him up whenever he needs it. This is what I’m talking about.
In America, there is a thing called ‘no-fault divorce’ in which the couple can get their marriage turned into divorce without giving any reason for it. Therefore, no mudslinging is done, in any way.
Why should a form of ‘khula’ be filled with so many ‘reasons’ for divorce? At the time of marriage, did anyone ask, why are you marrying this person, give reasons for it? So, it is sufficient that the person wants to leave the spouse. The process needs to be made palatable during all phases. Even if the ‘reason’ is written, do you think all the reasons can be written on one line, paragraph or page?
The lawyers have the best of it all, by charging both the parties. It is a lot of money coming their way. So, naturally, they will not tell you that there are less expensive ways too. It is called ‘divorce by mutual consent ’ and this is in Pakistan also. Giving the right to divorce on the marriage form is good, but not very effective. So, ultimately, it is most convenient for all to ask the boy’s family to go ahead with the unpleasant process. As it is more painful for the woman – perhaps this is the ‘ahsan’ that they can do!
Remaining close to one’s beliefs is essential at such times. Withdrawing from the public eye is good and ‘iddat’ period helps the girl with it. However, it is important for the affected persons to make a conscious effort to get back to ‘normal life’ as soon as possible. That is only possible, if they stop going over that ugly phase which brought about the divorce. More reason to stop mudslinging.
To get back to normal life here are some points that may help:
- Decide once and for all, that you will not talk badly of other party. Ask your family members to do the same too. ( I know, this becomes their pet subject! – so it is a very hard thing to do.)
When someone broaches the topic, counter it with asking about other things in that person’s life. This will give them the indication that you really don’t want to talk about it. You can say frankly too: “I don’t feel like talking about it.”
- Take up your old hobbies.
- Travel a lot and go on trips.
- Be with people who are refreshing for you.
- Leave people who cannot talk about anything else.
- Go out of your way to meet those persons, who have overcome this process and are leading successful lives now. Those who get divorced do want to talk about it. It is amazing how many useful things they can teach you. But make a point of going to those persons who did it nicely. Not the mudslingers.
- Meet spiritual guides.
- Do exercise by going to gym or for walks. You can take up yoga too.
- Cook nice dishes,
- Avoid getting depressed, as that will not help at all. (Read my article on Depression Fight your way out of Depression).
- You will cry a lot, but make it as less as possible. I’d like to recommend a book for you: The Breakup Repair-kit. How to heal your broken heart, by Marni Kamins and Joyce Macload. Its hilarious and very well written.
- Make a ceremony of tearing all those ‘together’ pics with him or her. 😉 there is a catharsis in this process. You can then throw the pieces into a lake, river or stream nearby.
- Read the Quran regularly. You will find that most persons cannot fulfill the requirements in it, to do it fairly. So be it. Remember, that God will take care of you better than that lost spouse of yours. Just trust Him, and leave things to Him.
But for this, you have to follow His requirement of not speaking ill of that person, yes, that person who is no longer to be your life partner.
(Sigh! – that was one tough but important article for me to write!)
Stay blessed my sweet reader.