Are singles too picky to get married?

This week’s guest blog is written by lifestyle coach and author Nasema Begum.

  • Find out why check-lists maybe responsible for your single life
  • How to maximise your quest to find the right one for winning results

‘Too picky for your own good?’

Whilst being single and looking for Mr Right, I had a synoptic checklist of what kind of person he must be, do and have.  Sensible right? Well, that’s what I thought! How else was a girl to know when she meets Mr Right? I just wanted a practising, honest and trustworthy Muslim. So they would follow the basic Islamic rulings, fulfil my rights, treat me well, and not lie to me. That was amongst a long list of other things… Er hmm, let’s move on quickly…

Unsurprisingly there weren’t many men who met my checklist. I didn’t think I was asking for much! But clearly I was. So my on and off search for Mr Right continued. I got fed up and frustrated of being introduced to men who weren’t Mr Right and so I lowered my standards, finally I met someone – yippee! – got married (hooray!) … and then got divorced. Uh-oh!

So what went wrong? What happened to my checklist? After much introspection and many tears, I realised I used my checklist to meet Mr Right because I thought Mr Right would be the perfect husband and I’d have the perfect marriage. But in reality, the checklist was a way to protect myself from getting hurt, rather than meet someone compatible.

Checklist Madness

What are you using your checklist for? How does it protect you from having a catastrophic marriage? Ladies are you looking for a tall, dark and handsome man who will sweep you of your feet just like the Disney, Hollywood and Bollywood movies? Gents, are you looking for a tall, slim, fair-skinned supermodel who will laugh at all your jokes, get on with your  mum and cook like a pro? So if you’re going to talk to any single they must tick off all the boxes first. Not only that, they just need to say one wrong thing and you’re quick to point out their mistake, and consequently they’re out of the running! Maybe, just maybe they were your soulmate and you rejected them. And not only that, you also came across as a total jerk! Oops!

Have you thought about why your ideal spouse would want to marry you? Are you the ideal spouse for your ideal spouse? Glup!

Dating Reality

There are many ways to meet singles today: through dating apps, marriage events and introductions from families. You have access to singles from all types of backgrounds, professions and interests, and yet you still remain single. Why?  Is there too much choice, especially on dating apps? You know full well there are thousands of singles out there and it won’t be long before you see someone you like. You hope and pray that they’re ‘The One’ but as usual they don’t tick all the boxes on your checklist and now you wait for the next one. The vicious cycle starts again.

Men, I can hear you from all the way over here! Yes, you’re vigorously nodding your head because ‘women are too picky’! Well guess what, men are just as picky! You may not have a long checklist, but that doesn’t mean you’re not busy looking over your date’s shoulder (literally and metaphorically) for someone better! Women know exactly what you’re up to!

I’m not picky…

I’m not picky I just have high standards…

Really? How much of your checklist consists of the way your spouse should look, the job they should have and the salary they should earn? Even when you do meet someone that ticks off your checklist and you go on dates, you’re left feeling disappointed. It’s because you’ve focused on physical and lifestyle attributes which doesn’t set the foundation for a happy marriage.  Instead, a checklist should focus on the shared principles, values and interest; what you believe to be right, and the ethics and code of behaviour you live by.

Here are a few other ways to know when you’re being picky

  • You look at small flaws
  • You want the whole package or nothing at all
  • You judge people quickly
  • You see a single with potential and you look for reasons why they’re not the right person for you, rather than why they may be right for you
  • Your friends tell you you’re too picky

Why are singles picky?

We are bombarded with adverts in the media of the perfect people, in perfect relationships, experiencing amazingly perfect romantic dinners and holidays, like it’s the norm. It creates an illusion and expectation that regardless of how much (or little) effort you put into finding your ideal spouse, you will marry a flawless spouse and have the perfect, idyllic marriage without even breaking a sweat!

But you don’t have to look far to see what a real relationship looks like. It could be your parent’s dysfunctional marriage, that of a sibling, extended family or friends. You definitely don’t want to have a relationship like that and you will do everything to protect yourself from it, even if your actions keep you single!

Is there such thing as a real relationship?

Each relationship will have its own issues and you will experience your fair share too… Thump! Yes, that was reality hitting you right between the eyes! You will experience pain, disappointment heartbreak, annoyance and so on – that’s part of life. But what holds a relationship together is the shared principles and values.

Here are some key aspects to a healthy relationship:

  • Communication: especially during the difficult times. Being defensive, giving each other the silent treatment, blaming others for their mistakes or deflecting blame from yourself to your spouse will only make things worse. Having open and honest communication, even when it’s upsetting, will help you to work things out.
  • Work as a team: you are not in competition with each other. Be each other’s biggest supporters and celebrate your successes. Their success is your success.
  • Trust: The feeling of unshakable security and love in a relationship is very important. That means no suspicion or paranoia, rather have good opinions of your spouse.
  • Room for change: As individuals we will change throughout the marriage. Acknowledge that your spouse will not be same in six month’s time let alone in several years’ time. So allow each other to grow. Support one another, rather than holding the other person back because you’re scared of change.
  • Have fun: It’s okay to have boring periods in a marriage but organising holidays, adventures and surprises are a great way to have quality time together, reconnect and rekindle the romance. Yes, you actually have to work on it; romance dies out if you let it!

Having a checklist when looking for a spouse is a good thing; it keeps you focused on the type person you want to marry. Just make sure you don’t use it to find Mr Right or Miss Perfect; rather use it to find Mr or Miss Compatible – a real person with all their flaws and imperfections.

While you search for your spouse, work on yourself to prepare yourself for a healthy relationship. It will help you both to cultivate a happy and wholesome relationship and be role models for the next generation.

Do you think singles’ checklists are realistic or they just protecting themselves from getting hurt? What advice would you give them?I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Since coming out of her abusive marriage Nasema has been trained by coaching giants in the Muslim and non Muslim world. As The Dating Coach Nasema helps singles to powerfully navigate the halal dating scene with ease. She helps singles meet and marry their soulmate and have a healthy loving relationship. You can download her FREE ebook Unstoppable Confidence: 13 POWERFUL steps to Happiness and Life on Your Terms at

The muzmatch app is where Single Muslims meet. Halal, free and fun, thousands of members find their partner on muzmatch with hundreds of weddings taking place around the world. Quality profiles, advanced filters, photo privacy, and cutting edge security make it easy to help you find the ONE.

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22 Responses

  1. Rani says:

    I have been searching for the right guy for about 7 months. And I really don’t have a huge checklist. The only thing I’m loooking for is that he respects evryone, practicing Muslim, good character, and social, and physical attraction needs to be there. Apparently I’m asking for too much. Half of the men I met were quite arrogant. The other half don’t pray or barely pray. Money doesn’t matter to me and neither does profession. Sigh. I feel like I’m asking for too much. Is this too much ? I tried to put my standards down, specially around physical attraction. I gave one guy a shot even though I was not physically attracted to him, I’m sorry to say. I litterally did not even wanted to sit through the full date. Just wanted to get up in 10 mins I’m sorry to sound a bit rude. So lowering my standards just makes me so damn unhappy! This is the person you’re going to spend the rest of your life with.

    This article was nicely written but it doesn’t mention how when Allah is going to will it then only will you get married. If you run after love, majority of the times it’s not going to come to you. Just be patient , yes search, but don’t expect it to puff out of thin air … When Allah wills that’s when you’ll find mr/ms right no matter how long/short your list is.

    • Nasema says:

      I did the same thing, I lowered my standards and I married the wrong man. I recommend you address the reason why you feel you have to lower your standards, as the type of men you want are available. Everything happens when Allah wills, I agree with that, I have found that peoples attitude is that keeps them single, that includes the dissatisfaction of Allah decree.

  2. Shafia says:

    Here’s the problem.
    To many ppl that aren’t serious enough for marriage. They say they want to get married but when it’s time to meet someone or message someone they make up excuses.
    If I am making time to chat with you please make the same effort.
    For the love of god stop swiping right just cuz you like my pictures.

    • Nasema says:

      Singles show you who they, if there are not serious their behaviour will tell you that. Have an attitude of gratitude that you saw their true intention sooner rather than later.

  3. Eman says:

    I’m looking for Muslim men for married.

  4. Eman says:

    I’m 33 years old and live in London 😐I work full time job for care home.

  5. Irfan Afzal says:

    Ladies Candidates on muzmatch are too picky. Let it be single, divorcee, annualled or widowed or aged. Dont even get back. They think hitting on the match button is same as someone is hitting their ego. Pathetic seriously…

    • Momodu says:

      Ladies will not like pictures. They don’t even give you a chance to talk to them and most of them are really gold diggers asking for gifts even before you meet them. What has the world come to?

    • Nasema says:

      I think this also applies to men.

  6. Rani says:

    I don’t think I’m asking for much. The only things that are in my list are: 1. be a practicing Muslim to the extent that he prays regularly, respectful to everyone, social/talkative, and needs to have physical attraction from both sides. Apparently it seems like I’m asking a lot as I’ve not yet come across anyone that fits this criteria, meaning it’s so hard to find guys who PRAY or be as much practicing as I’m.
    And I did try to lower my standards. I thought, hey how about I try to go for a guy who wasn’t attracted to me. That meeting did not pan out well, I just wanted to leave within 10 minutes. So lowering my standards only makes me unhappy. I’m really not asking for money, rich, specific occupation, drop dead handsom, prince charming – I’m not. Just a simple/or not so-simple person who is practicing. Is that so much to ask? But I think it’ll only happen if/when Allah wills it inshallah and I don’t think I would ever want to lower my standards from the 4 points that I’m looking for. If he doesn’t fall into that list I don’t think I can be happy. Or should I cut down the social/talkative aspect? Hmm.. I don’t know..

    • Ibrar says:

      I think its going to have to be the physical attraction side of things you will have to compromise on eventually or risk getting older and sinlge.

    • Nasema says:

      You don’t have to lower your standards or eliminate qualities that appeal to you. Look at why you you attract the wrong type of men.

    • Zak says:

      I have the same criteria and it seems like i’m looking for an alien!
      And i agree with this text since we all elimate each other based on one thing or another. I believe the moment we’ll stop doing that, then we’ll probably find the real match.
      I’m working on that myself and is going just fine so far … it is true that you can eliminate an amazing person just because he’s not willing to move or he’s shy, etc. Or a man eliminating an amazing women juste because she does now how to cook, or she’s not social enough.
      Anyway, i believe plenty of man and women are practicing muslims with great values 😉

  7. Saif says:

    Please change the unmatch preference .. some people are rude and don’t respond.. just wipe for fun. And this advice is to improvise your app if you consider and respect the suggestion.

  8. AbdulLateef says:

    The aspect of this post that really got me thinking some few years back is “if you eventually meet the right person, what makes you think they’ll want you back”. In my experience I believe most prospective suitors have such a long checklist that makes them undeserving of such suitors. So I think before you draw up your checklist then a causory look at ones self should be the first line of action. I have seen many ladies that attach so much importance to tiny bits that makes them lose the right person. I have this friend that had gone through many failed relationships but she used to confined in me. There happen to be this childhood friend of hers that has been pestering her for relationship that she won’t give a chance because he has a k- leg. Her thought was focused on what her friend reaction would be if she entertain such relationship. I convinced her about giving the guy a chance. Less than 6months after that they got married. Now she tells me how wonderful the guy his.
    Another thing that I find very beneficial is having a good friend of opposite sex. If one can keep it as friend safely. They often give a better prospective to ones excesses in a relationship. That way one can know when he is out of the line in terms of demands and expectations

  9. Mina says:

    I don’t think anyone should lower their standards and be miserable to get married. Naturally we have a list of what we would like in our future spouse. It is up to the individual to see what can be compromised if need be, and what definitely can’t be. You are not going to be able to tick all your boxes and should be realistic. It gets difficult when you like someone and then when families are involved/ask for permission from parents it then goes downhill because they think the potential spouse is not good enough for their son/daugher. Other thing is if someone has written certain things they are looking for in their future partner, then please read and respect the content and not ‘like’ their profile and expect to get an answer when you clearly aren’t what they are looking for. Maybe that is why you have not been responded to!

  10. mohammed says:

    I don’t know what to say

  11. Shah says:

    You know something guys and girls, all we ever do is complain, when push comes to shove we don’t act. Beggers can’t choosers.

  12. Ronin says:

    Everyone seems to want someone better than themselves. Guess what, that better woman you’re after also wants a better man than you.

    A fat woman wants a fit man. A playboy wants a hijabi woman. Pi$$ off, really

  13. Abdul Mateen says:

    Mashallah the only thing I can say which is somewhat annoying to the point of exhaustion for some men is
    A lot of the sisters I’ve ran into on the app tend to look at skin color entirely way too much mashallah and it’s kind of offensive
    When it comes to Islamic marriage everyone knows that mashallah you put 4 qualities and relate it to that person
    Religion , Status , Lineage and Apperance correct me if I’m wrong mashallah
    But we have to take that in consideration
    And brothers also I see do this
    We tend to say on the app I am only seeking African women
    Caucasian women
    Pakistani women
    And mashallah we aren’t looking at the larger picture that yes race is huge but we have to realize this is marriage and your marriage can influence your life exponentially in good or bad
    So that Pakistani sister you see may not be the one compatible with you but you don’t have to settle because she’s Pakistani
    We are Muslim and these qualities in which we look for a wife or husband is based off solely our islam and things that will preserve our marriages not our nafs
    Mashallah I don’t know if anyone will agree with me on my opinion but that’s all it is
    I’m just saying give brothers and sisters chances befire you start to say what race you want because it’s an actual marriage app which means various races are there
    Also take in consideration that most sisters and brothers have private photos because of many reasons examples are evil eye , modesty , being shy , or even nervous because this is new to them so let’s give the chances and actually converse then be patient enough to wait for them to reveal their photos because in the end as husband or wife your going to need patience and through the pre marriage stage you will need patience inshallah Asalamu Alaikum Rahmatullah

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