Notes "Listening and Bonding"
- Spouses want to be heard and understood but we often don’t have the time or patience to listen
Working Toward a Solution
- It is very important for Muslim couples to remember that tranquility is the basis of the marriage and that love and mercy is the basis of the relationship
- Mercy can be demonstrated by taking time out for your spouse and listening to them
- Being merciful means that you really care about your spouse and that you want to really solve the problem
The Prophet’s Example
- The Prophet (pbuh) would physically turn himself completely and with his attention when someone addressed him. He would never interrupt them and would listen to them carefully. He would ask them follow up questions.
- If he had something to say, he would wait until the person was done
- The Messenger of God (pbuh) was often quiet. When someone discussed something with him, he would listen and then answer after he gave thought to what he would say
- He expressed so much care in his dealings with others that everyone who dealt with him, thought they were the most special person to the Prophet (pbuh)
- The Prophet urged us to speak the truth even if it is against ourselves. The true Prophetic understanding therefore is to admit when a person is wrong and not try to hide behind excuses
Developing Good Listening Habits
- Ask your spouse about their day and what happened. Listen with attention and care. This is investing in your relationship and it will strengthen your relationship
- If you care about the things that your spouse cares about, then they will care about the things you are concerned about
- Make comments that show that you heard what they said and that you realize that it is important to them
- When you feel that everyone in the world seems against you and you come home, you know your partner will support you and understand you when nobody else can
- When you listen to your partner talk, go beyond what they are saying. Don't take their words and try to interpret it from your own frame of reference. Take a fresh look at what you’re hearing. Try to look at how they would really feel, knowing your partner, and empathize with them
- You can also ask for clarification. For example, "This is what I understood from what you told me. Is that how feel? Did I understand correctly?"
- It is not about the logic about who is right and wrong, it is about how people feel
- The final goal is that your going to resolve the problem. It will be a win-win situation and it may be difficult, but ultimately in the end it is a positive solution