Bint Ahmed Sulaymaan – Cii Radio | 23 Muharram 1436/17 November 2014

There’s a young man, his parents find out about his drug addiction, they are totally traumatised. Instead of getting him help, they unfortunately feel the institution of marriage will rehabilitate him. The idea of “settling” him down, concealing his ugly habit and marrying him off to an unsuspecting, innocent young girl is deemed a better solution. Her single settled life is thrown upside down and she is thrown into a life of hell.

She’s been to university and then climbed the ladder at work. Someone introduced her to Kat. It will give her a boost and help her multitask, plus it’s a slimmer. She loses weight, is a superstar at work but then she needs more and soon her 4 gram treat is R1000 a day habit that she cannot function without. Her biological clock is ticking, a good proposal comes along and concealing things she marries.

Addiction results in obsessive compulsive behaviour. Addicts will go to great lengths to get their fix. They have two personas. When he is craving he is different from when he is high. In order to be calm and relaxed he needs to have his drug of choice and thus he’s high all the time. His wife only knows the “high” him. When he calms down everything becomes a fight and she blames herself until years later the ugly truth is revealed.

Addiction and alcoholism is one of the most destructive forces a relationship can ever endure if it manages to survive it. The more time and effort an addict puts into using drugs, the life of finding drugs and using them becomes a cycle at the expense of everyone and everything around them.  Love of the family, family responsibilities, time with the family take a distant second place to the love of drugs. Drug addiction is something that Muslim organisations and rehabilitation centres have to deal with on a daily basis.

“It is a very, very sad situation that the Ummah of Sayidinnah Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) sits with this massive problem. We must realise that Allah SWT has created us for one particular purpose and where Allah SWT says in the Quraan that Allah has created us for no other reason but to serve Allah SWT,” said Imam Moti Saban who heads the Muslim Judicial Council’s (MJC) social welfare centre and has been with them for the last 30 years.

More and more marriages are suffering from the addiction of one or sometimes both partners. Drugs and its different categories, and alcohol are among the major causes of destruction of a society because the use of drugs and all the other intoxicants is of the greatest crimes which in itself lead to other serious sins.

“It is what we call the mother of all evils and the cause of corruption. Whenever a society is infested with drugs, as we are now, it is thrown into violent passions and lust and harms and leads to all kinds of contagious diseases,” explained the Imam, “Muslims must realise that Allah SWT, who we give praise to, has made the good lawful for His servants and has also prohibited all that is evil.”

The only solution and direction Imam Saban councils couples is from the aspect of belief. It is only if Muslims make a U-Turn and return to Allah SWT, follow the worship and way of life of Islam will there be eradication. Maulana Riaz Limbada from the Crescent of Hope’s female rehabilitation centre shares the same feeling.

“We at rehab centres have realised that there is absolutely no rehabilitation without reconnection. Reconnecting to Allah is the cornerstone of rehabilitation firstly. Secondly, prevention is obviously much better than cure so let us stay connected to Allah and InshaAllah we will not reach the stage where we will need to be rehabilitated from substance abuse,” said Maulana Limbada.

Drugs have become an acceptable part of our society. Television, probably the most captivating form of media next to music, glorifies drugs. The glorification of drug taking and society’s acceptance of it has brought it to the phenomena where the majority of youth feel they need some sort of enhancement or additive in their lives.

“Sober has become boring. Society perceives it to be boring. We are witnessing this,” said Maulana Limbada.

Despite drug addiction being able to infest during youth, it is still possible to conceal the addiction especially from close family and friends. The dirty secret is often only exposed after years of marriage and many other lives are grievously affected. Proper investigation of who one is going to marry has to be done but it is possible that even with background checks, addiction can be well hidden and only resurface with a vengeance after marriage. Our profile of a drug addict needs to change. We picture a drug addict as an unkempt individual who hasn’t bathed but this is hardly the case.

“We call it today designer drugs, designed by shaytaan. Many of my patients have high profile jobs in many institutions… Today, it’s absolutely concealed. In many cases families who find out their children are taking drugs are concealing it from the rest of the family and successfully for a long while. In fact many of the addicts have been able to conceal it from their families. We have reached a stage where we may have to demand drug tests and even aids tests on proposals,” explains Maulana Limbada.

Drug addiction in marriages affects the income of the household as money is channelled in the incorrect direction. The need for money often leads to theft and the stress of not being able to obtain drugs leads to domestic abuse. Ultimately the upbringing of innocent children is sadly affected.

“Marriage is a taboo for a drug addict up until he or she takes a conscientious decision to and says they have had enough and they want to give up. At a rehab centre this is the first thing we establish, whether the patient wants to leave the habit. Have they come to a stage of tawbah.”

The fundamental principles of Islam protect us against all the evil we are presently faced with.

“Alhamdulillah those that are imbued with the spirit of Imaan and Taqwa they can say Alhamdulillah Allah SWT has guided me and protected. No wonder the Quraan being revealed over a period of 23 years, we have to make sure that as within the first 13 years aayahs were revealed to establish Imaan in the individual, we have to make sure that we rear our children and our society to be Allah conscious then we can build a society for the future,” said Imam Saban

There is really only One Saviour and one direction that can prevent people from these calamities and that is to hold on to and to practice the beautiful Deen of Islam and be steadfast in it.

“Those who are sitting with this evil, Allah SWT is waiting on you to make tawbah and to repent. Allah is waiting on you to reconstruct your life. There is a verse in the Quraan where Allah SWT says those who repent sincerely for the cause and for the love and the sake of Allah, then Allah the Almighty will turn their bad deeds on the Day of Judgement into good deeds provided they turned to Allah sincerely and never go back to wherever they came from.”