A realistic approach to married life.
This issue can be discussed under the following headings:
a. A realistic attitude the ma-hr, reception and gifts.
There is no benefits in burdening the husband with extravagant ma-hr and imposing upon him to give a lavish wedding reception. In fact, it could very well be met according to the husband's financial capability. The wife (and the other members of the family) should not expect the husband to spend in excess merely because he is marrying her.
b. One of the better ingredients for a happy marriage.
On the wife's part, is not to pressure her husband into spending money on things he cannot afford. There should be patience in difficult times and content in prosperous times. The worst thing a women can do for her marriage is to rebel in money maters and create unnecessary division between them. The Prophet left his wives for a whole month when they demanded better living standards from him. he remained apart from them until God revealed:
So the Prophet chose them and they reciprocated.
The husband should also be considerate and be generous in spending. He should avoid being stingy, for that is condemned. God says:
"Let the wealthy spend from his wealth. And those for whom Allah has restricted their provisions, they should spend from what ever Allah has given them."
c. Being realistic in expectations and avoiding fantasies.
Very few people live in this reality. Many couples paint a fantastic picture in their minds before marriage and assume their spouses to be something very similar to the spouses of Paradise. For that, they will have to wait. Moderate expectations from the spouse are commendable and each should try to accommodate the other's ideals as far as possible. The prophet (SAW) said:
"A believing man should not condemn (a quality of) a believing women. If he dislike one characteristics, he may well like another characteristic."
This is how God has created human beings. No one person is endowed with all the best qualities. A women may be average in beauty but excellent in faith and personality.
If perfectionists stopped and thought for a moment, they would realize that are unjust. Many of the perfections they seek do not exist in their own lives and personalities.
People would like to see certain qualities in them (the perfectionists), just as they would like to find their match. It may happen that a finicky person finds someone he likes after a very long wait, only to be turned down by the women because she dose not like what she sees. So they end up losing out in life totally.
d. A realistic approach in asking for rights and fulfillment of responsibilities.
Although the husband and wife have rights, it is not proper that they violate each other's right and demand unrealistic chores from each other. They should be very considerate and lighten each other's burden as much as possible.