Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad
Question: What should I do whenever my wife verbally or physically abuses me for any reason or act violently towards me?
Thank you for your question. I am sorry to hear that your wife is doing this, and I pray that Allah guides her to reason, balance, and communication.
Abuse is absolutely impermissible in Islam by either the husband or the wife, and one should fear one’s accountability for this on the Day of Judgment. Please see the fatwa of the impermissibility of abuse here:
She should consider this Prophetic hadith. Abu Huraira said that when Allah’s Messenger (Allah bless him and give him peace) was asked which woman was best, he replied, “The one who pleases [her husband] when he looks at her, obeys him when he gives a command and does not go against his wishes regarding her person or property by doing anything of which he disapproves.” [Nasa’i]
I advise you to read the following advice:
You should set boundaries with your wife and explain to her how her abuse makes you feel. If she doesn’t listen, you should involve a third party that she will listen to. Also, consider asking her to worship with you, take a marriage course with you, and a course on developing good character. She should also try an anger management course. When she is actually in the midst of being violent, you should defend yourself or leave the room. Lock yourself in a room if necessary.
Read these books with her so you can both learn to communicate better.
Honestly, if she refuses the above, won’t even admit that she needs to change, and you see that your efforts are fruitless, you should pray istikhara about leaving her. It is not right for you to suffer for the rest of your life when there are plenty of sweet girls in the sea. You deserve a balanced, happy person who doesn’t behave like a spoiled child. May Allah give you the best of this world and the next with a wife who loves you supports you, and treats you well.
[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria, for two years, where she studied aqidah, fiqh, tajweed, tafseer, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan, where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She recently moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.