Loves her husband in a troubled marriage
Fatwa No: 87376

  • Fatwa Date:19-5-2004 - Rabee' Al-Awwal 30, 1425
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Question

Al-Hamdu Lillah, I became Muslim some years ago and I love Islam based on Qur’an and Sunnah according to the laws of Allah Subhnana Wat’ala. I recently married, Al-Hamdu Lillah after many years of waiting I am a woman of older years (late 30's). I spoke with my Wali and my husband-to-be before marriage and made sure that my husband to be had similar expectations as I about marriage so that, Insha Allah, there would be love and kindness and no misunderstanding between us. But now that I am married my husband is not adhering to the things he said before marriage. If I gently and kindly remind him what he said before marriage - he says I am calling him a liar and becomes angry with me. One great problem between us is that he is forcing me to practice contraception, he says if I do not do it he will divorce me. I am devastated as I do love my husband, but I feel so strongly that as Muslims we should do as Allah and his Messenger commands and I know that the Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam) said we should have children to make his Ummah large on the Day of Judgement. I cry a lot about this and when I find my Muslim sisters are expecting children I find it hard to fight back the tears of sadness. I love my husband very much and I simply do not know what to do, I feel oppressed in this matter for I know that A’zl cannot be practiced without consent of the woman. He refuses to even practice A’zl. He uses other methods. I have to pay for and buy them from shops, which makes me so embarrassed in order to stop him from being angry with me. I do not wish to make him angry at all, Insha Allah, for I know I can be cursed if I do this. I simply don’t know what to do. He has told me if I am sad then I shouldn’t be with him. I feel he is not taking responsibility for his actions; also he does not support me financially. He is away a lot, and I never know when I will hear from him when he leaves or after his phone calls. Please advise me I simply wish to be a good wife, Insha Allah.

Answer

Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds; and may His blessings and peace be upon our Prophet Muhammad and upon all his Family and Companions.

 

We congratulate you on your Islam and ask Allah to grant you a good reward for that, increase your faith, tranquility and open your heart for the teachings of Islam.

There are many points you mentioned about your husband.  We will deal them one by one.

1) As for your remarks that he did not fulfill his promise, we would like to inform him that it is mandatory on him to fulfill his promise and do his best to make you happy.  True happiness can only be achieved by following the command of Allah.  Hence, we inform your husband that he has to keep his word and fulfill his commitments.  He should know that breaking his promise is among the characteristics of hypocrites, as the Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam) said: "Whoever has (the following) four characteristics is considered a pure hypocrite: 'If he speaks, he tells a lie; if he gives a promise, he breaks it, if he makes a covenant he proves treacherous; and if he quarrels, he behaves in a very imprudent, evil, insulting manner (unjust). And whoever has one of these characteristics, has one characteristic of a hypocrite, unless he gives it up."

Forcing you to use contraceptives is another of your husband's mistakes since the Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam) encouraged Muslims to increase their numbers and follow the steps that assure their reproduction.

2) Know that both a husband and a wife have equal rights to have children, thus it is not allowed for a husband to force his wife to prevent pregnancy.

Terminating the ability for fertilization permanently is forbidden in Shariah.  Using temporary contraceptives is permissible if there is a legal reason, such as the wife is sick or she cannot bear frequent pregnancies, etc.  However, it should be practised with the consent of both partners.

‘Azal (coitus interruption) is not allowed unless the wife approves of it, for the Hadith of Umar that "The Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam) forbade practising ‘Azal with a free woman except with her permission." [Ahmad, Ibn Majah]

A husband is obliged to spend on his wife; thus he has to purchase the contraceptives and should pay for that, especially since you do not accept it at all.

3) As for your saying that he does not spend on you this is a strange matter.  A husband has to bear the expenses of his wife.  Allah Says (interpretation of meaning): {Let the rich man spend according to his means, and the man whose resources are restricted, let him spend according to what Allâh has given him. Allâh puts no burden on any person beyond what He has given him.}[65:7]. The Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam) said stating the rights of a wife: "Feed her as and when you feed yourself, clothe her as and when you clothe yourself; do not beat her on her face; do not abuse her and do not separate yourself from her except inside the house." [Ahmad]

Therefore, we inform this husband that he must spend on his wife even if she is rich and earns money but if she agrees to give up her right she can do so. If she insists on her right and her husband refuses to spend on her then she has the right to ask for divorce.

4) If your husband travels for any legal purpose, for instance, to earn bread for his family, or to fulfill his duties it is permissible.  If the journey is for any bad purpose then it is forbidden.  Whenever he travels for a lawful purpose he has to leave his wife in a safe place and should not leave her for a long period.  If she is not safe in her place then he is not allowed to travel, since protecting his wife is an obligation upon him.

Finally, we advise you to try your best to convince your husband of your desire to beget children and that this is your legal right. He is committing a sin by forcing you to prevent pregnancies and not spending on you.  If he does not accept your advice then you have the right to seek divorce from him.  It is better for you to inform your guardian of all these matters to seek his help, or to contact any Islamic center that can help you.

Know that your husband’s mistakes are not related to Islam and Islam should not be seen as supporting those mistakes.  It is individuals’ mistakes; Islam does not agree with these practices.

May Allah bless you and make your problems easy.

Allah knows best.

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