Answered by Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil
Question: Assalam aleykum,
I am the second wife of someone and married him without the approval of my parents. My mother wants me to divorce. I am old and I had no other proposals.
What should I do?
Answer: Assalamualaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh dear sister,
I pray this finds you well. Please forgive me for the delay.
Dear sister, you are in a tremendous amount of pain and confusion. I pray that Allah grants you clarity, and that He gives you the courage to do what is most pleasing to Him.
Please perform the Prayer of Guidance about whether or not to stay in your marriage, or get a divorce. Please pay careful attention to what Allah unfolds for you. For example, if your husband treats you poorly, then that may be a sign for you to leave him. If your mother softens her stance towards your marriage, then that may be a sign for you to stay.
Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: A person came to Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) and asked, “Who among people is most deserving of my fine treatment?” He (ﷺ) said, “Your mother”. He again asked, ”Who next?” “Your mother”, the Prophet (ﷺ) replied again. He asked, “Who next?” He (the Prophet (ﷺ)) said again, “Your mother.” He again asked, “Then who?” Thereupon he (ﷺ) said,” Then your father.”
In another narration: “O Messenger of Allah! Who is most deserving of my fine treatment?” He (ﷺ) said, “Your mother, then your mother, then your mother, then your father, then your nearest, then nearest”.
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
I urge you to mend ties with your mother. You only have one, and it is a major sin to break her heart.
As a general rule, in today’s world, it is unwise to get married to man who is already married. You risk hurting his first wife, his children from her, and bringing harm to yourself and your own children.
Even though your husband was pressured to marry his first wife, he chose to go along with it. And then he forced you to marry him by threatening to harm himself if you did not comply. Both of his decisions do not bode well for his character. This is a terrible cycle of pain, and I do not advise that you bring a child into your marriage.
Please do not fear being divorced. Fear being trapped in a marriage that distances you from your family and from Allah. How does your husband treat you and his first wife?
It is natural and healthy to want children, but ask yourself if your marriage is truly a safe and nourishing place for an innocent child.
Can your husband give your child/children the time, money and effort which they deserve?
You want peace. Trust that Allah can give that to you. Your responsibility is to empower yourself and make better choices. Whatever you decide, you must commit to it, and do everything in your power to make it work.
Ask yourself – if you had a daughter in your situation, what would you advise her to do?
Please keep in touch.
[Ustadha] Raidah Shah Idil
Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil has spent almost two years in Amman, Jordan, where she learned Shafi’i’ fiqh, Arabic, Seerah, Aqeedah, Tasawwuf, Tafsir and Tajweed. She continues to study with her Teachers in Malaysia and online through SeekersHub Global. She graduated with a Psychology and English degree from University of New South Wales, was a volunteer hospital chaplain for 5 years and has completed a Diploma of Counselling from the Australian Institute of Professional Counsellors. She lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, with her husband, daughter, and mother-in-law.