I am single and in my 30s. To date in my life, I have met only one person who has made me want to marry him – a distant relative of mine. We have never had a direct one on one conversation but in his first visit to my parents his interest in me was beyond evident. He was significantly elder to myself and an eligible bachelor. He expressed his desire to marry me to his family who are pretentious and refused on the grounds that my family is not financially sound and that I am overweight. He escalated his desire to marry me to the family elders who unfortunately sided with his parents in their greed instead of fulfilling their obligation to marry two ageing singles within their family. He fought for me for several years but unfortunately his parents did everything in their powers to make him marry anybody but me. The worst blow came when his greedy mother finally forced him into marriage with another woman of stronger financial standing, though also overweight. He made sure that everybody was aware that he was being forced and that it was me who he wanted to marry. Neither my parents nor I took any indecent steps to stop his engagement or marriage though it would have been easy to do.
Today he is stuck in an unhappy marriage and his interest in me is still beyond evident. He looks for excuses to not go home and works longer hours than he has to. We had never spoken, we were never in a relationship nor did we have any understanding with one another. Only my parents were aware of my interest in him, I have maintained my dignity and never had a conversation with him neither before nor after his marriage.
All I want to know now is: Has my right to marry been denied? If a decent Muslim man wants to marry a decent Muslim woman, does anybody have the right to force him not to? Did his parents have the right to destroy his life, my life, and the life of the woman he married? If he went to the family elders to marry me and they supported a forced marriage to another, haven’t they done me and him injustice? I know that a woman can not be forced to marry without her consent, but what about a man?