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Marital Issues – Unhappy

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by Fatwaa.com
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Assalamu Alaikum,

I have been married for 6 months. I have married my husband because he is religious and he is known for his good character. He is a good man, but I am experiencing several issues in my marriage that are affecting my happiness.

1) Lack of intimate life. My husband has difficulties with intimacy and therefore, we experience difficulty in having intimacy. As a result, my needs are unsatisfied and I feel very frustrated. This also impacts my bond with him.

2) I live with him in his parents’ house where his parents and brother live. His brother is an adult and he is my non-mahram, but he is a decent man who does not really talk to me a lot and I always wear the hijab when I am in common areas of the house (living room, kitchen). So if we do not talk much together, we are never alone together and I wear hijab in front of him, is this permissible?
Also, I feel like his mother is controlling. She requires me to spend my day in a way that she wants; she wants me to wake up at a certain time and do tasks the way she wants me to do. She never appreciates the work I do and she complains about things I fail to do well only. She often says things to me that are very hurtful and gets upset at me for things that I don’t understand and when she is upset at me, she is very harsh with me. This makes me feel very hurt and I feel like I’m constantly under pressure because I’m always trying to please her but she doesn’t seem to be pleased. I just wish I had my own privacy, where I could spend my day the way I want to and not feel pressured by someone else. I spoke with my husband about this and although he himself told me before marriage that he preferred living separately, very soon after marriage he said that he doesn’t remember saying that and that he doesn’t want to move away from his parents’ house. I feel betrayed and hurt.

3) I feel like I do not get to spend much time with my parents. We visit them almost every week, but only for like 2 hours and my husband or my husband’s family comes along so my parents are busy serving them, and I do not get time alone with my parents to talk to them. I spoke about this to my husband, but he doesn’t seem to understand my needs and he is not making effort to allow me to spend time alone with my parents. He lets me go stay for one night at their house once a month (we live 15 minutes away from my parents’ house) and I feel like it’s not enough. I try to take care of his parents and to be nice with them, and in return, I would appreciate if I could spend time with my parents in a manner that would make me satisfied.

So, I am dealing with several issues in my marriage and they are causing me to feel very unhappy. I need advice for my situation.

JazakAllah

Answer

Wa’alaykum as Salam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

We pray and ask Allah to bless you with ease.

1) You mention that your husband ‘difficulties in intimacy’. You should find out what cures are available. If it is health related, he should consult a doctor and see what medical options are available, If it is psychological, he needs to go for counseling, He needs to understand that it is YOUR right that he attends to this immediately. 

2) Since you are fully covered in front of him, and you never alone together, nor do you have any unnecessary conversations, there is no problem with this.

3) We fully understand the inconvenience and difficulties that you have to deal with. The life of this world is a test. Allah has given different tests to different people. Whilst some people have to deal with the death of loved ones, and others do not know from where there next meal will come from, some have the test of dealing with difficult people. If you make Sabar and persevere, your rewards will be immense. Continue imploring Allah to make ease, and bless you with separate accommodation. 

Having said that, if you fear that she is being too abusive to you, and you cannot manage any longer, then the ruling on demanding separate accommodation will depend on two things:

  1. Your living conditions and background before marriage,
  2. Your husbands financial position.

If you are from an affluent family, and your husband is also well off, he has to provide you with a separate place to live.

If you are from an average background, and he is financially stable, he needs to give you a separate room, kitchen and bathroom, that is not shared by anyone else.

If both of you are from poor backgrounds, then you will just have to live as you your, and deal with the issues at hand.

Your husband also needs to understand that your duty is in serving and pleasing him. You are not bound to live according to the requirements of your mother in law. Whatever you are doing for your in laws is because of your kind heart. But you cannot accept to be bullied and abused.

4) Since you are newly married, you will naturally miss your parents more, and have lots of memories and longing for the place where you were brought up. The desire of going to your parents is further enhanced by the fact that you are not currently happy,

At the same time, since it is only six months, your husband may also want more time with you. The only solution is to pray to Allah, and try your best to convince your husband to allow you more time.

In conclusion, your husband will have to be understanding and considerate of your feelings. You mentioned that he is ‘religious’, so surely he will not mind asking a scholar about his wife’s rights?  If he is serious about having a blissful marriage and happy wife, then he should be willing to take advise from a local scholar.

And Allaah Ta’aala knows best

Wassalaam,

Ismail Moosa (Mufti)

This answer was collected from Fatwaa.com which is an excellent Q&A site managed by Mufti Ismail Moosa from South Africa. .

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