Dear Male muzmatch User,
It has taken me a mammoth-sized amount of courage to download muzmatch, to tell my parents and siblings that I’m looking for a potential husband “online,” to quell my parents’ fears when they tell me “you can’t trust anyone on an Islamic matrimonial app! They could be a psychopath or a conman!” and “it’s easy to lie online.” But so far, I’ve not found anyone I click with via the traditional routes; not in the ISOC at university, not at work, nor the dozens of “suitable” bachelors my family and friends have tried to set me up with.
When I met up recently with my girlfriends for a catch-up over burgers at Tinseltown, they told me that they had downloaded an Islamic matrimonial app called muzmatch. It sounded promising – one of my friends’ sisters had already found her spouse through the app and another had a cousin who had just had his nikah to someone he found on muzmatch. I was intrigued. I went home and did my research. 45,000 marriages in the five years since it had started? Not bad at all! 2 million users across the globe? Let’s say 1 million are male users; the possibilities of who I might meet are endless! I have more chance of finding someone like-minded on muzmtach than I do in the three black binders of marriage CVs Uncle keeps at the local mosque.
I prayed istikhara, slept on it and woke up the next morning full of courage and promise, ready to present my case to my parents. And now here I am.
There are a number of things Male muzmatch User that I, Female muzmatch User, sincerely request you do when setting up and using your profile:
Please be honest with your ideal timeframe for marriage
Please don’t select “as soon as possible” or “within 1-2 years” if you know that you won’t be able to get married for another 3-4 years – whether it’s for educational, logistical, practical, financial or family reasons. When you string me along, while I think we are going to be married in a year’s time, then ask me to be a little more patient for XYZ reason and I give you the benefit of the doubt – give you another year of my life – I become deeply emotionally invested in you. Not only is dishonesty and lying haram, not only are you one day going to break my heart, but I could have swiped on someone who actually did want to get married around the same time as I did.
Make your ‘about me’ section more detailed
Generally, women love a man who knows exactly what he is looking for. Your ‘about me’ section is an opportunity for you to tell me a bit about yourself: your cultural background, your values, your career, your hobbies, how important family is to you, whether or not you want children, and your personality traits. And then write a bit about what you are looking for in a future wife. I won’t judge you if you're looking for a stay-at-home wife – I’d rather you state exactly what you are looking for as it saves me time swiping if I don’t want to be a stay-at-home wife. We don’t like it when you leave the ‘about me’ section blank or write things like “swipe to find out” and “ask me to find out more.” You don’t need to write an autobiography, but a couple of detailed paragraphs that will help me get an idea whether you and I have things in common.
Be clear if ethnicity is an issue
If you want to marry a woman from your ethnicity, or you know that your family has a say over who you marry and they don’t want you to marry outside your ethnicity, just save me time by stating so in your profile. I don’t want to chat to you for two months and then find out that your parents won’t accept a daughter-in-law from a different ethnic background. I advise that you sit down and have this conversation with your family before you start using muzmatch to find out their stance on marrying a woman outside your ethnic community.
Be truthful when you select your career, religiousness and praying frequency
The type of job you do, how practising you are religion-wise and whether or not you pray are important factors I will consider when deciding whether or not to swipe on you. If you aspire to be more practising or aspire to pray more regularly, put that in your ‘about me’ section. There’s no point lying – because if we do get married I will find out by living with you what you actually do for a living, how practising you are and whether or not you pray. It’s not fair to make me believe you are very practising and pray all 5 prayers if you aren’t. Make the right selections so that the right woman– the one looking for a man just like you – gets a chance to swipe on you and not me.
Keep it halal when we chat
If I had wanted to text inappropriate things on the chat window, I would have downloaded Tinder, not muzmatch. But I downloaded muzmatch because I am serious about getting married and doing it the Islamic way. So be respectful and be appropriate, or de-activate your muzmatch account, because muzmatch isn’t for sexting.
Jazak Allahu khairan and may Allah grant us all spouses that are honest, truthful and compatible.
A Female muzmatch User
Yousra Samir Imran is an events coordinator by day and author of upcoming novel Hijab and Red Lipstick, which will be published by Hashtag Press in October 2020. To pre-order, please visit www.hashtagpress.co.uk/shop