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Solutions to Marriage Problems

By: Abdul Adheem al-Muhtadi al-Bahrani

My husband has always openly said that he does not love me and stays with me only for our children and now I do not love him anymore and am very unhappy; what should I do?
Question: I am a mother of three girls and two boys. This is the production of twenty years of my marriage, which my husband openly describes as being a bad choice. He says that he stays with me just for the sake of the children. He does not feel any love towards me as his wife. He is sad and nervous. He insinuates that he wants to get married to a girl that matches his ambition.Now, after my hopeless attempts, I have become like him. I do not feel a deep love for him. I have lost my patience. I do not know what my fate or the fate of my children will be. I cry when I am alone. Does my crying solve my problem or could you show me a solution that would take me near happiness and success with my husband?
The answer: To have a happy marital life, one should think deeply before getting married. One should think of the culture, ambition, wishes, and morals of the other person to whom one wants to get married. Without that, life will be full of troubles and sufferings as you suffer now. This is the problem of most of those who get married just to satisfy their lusts; they do not think of what will happen when the lust extinguishes and children come.
Now, let us think of a solution on the basis of “something is better than nothing.” We suggest that you should:
1. care for yourself by using adornments, perfumes, attractive clothes, and nice (unaffected) words even at ordinary times.
2. care for whatever he is interested in, because this is the key to get to his heart.
3. read more about Islamic culture in general, the Holy Qur'an, and supplications because knowledge relieves the heart and guides to the right way.
4. show love to him and to your children and pay careful attention to the sacred instinct of motherhood so that he may understand that you are ready to tolerate every difficulty for the sake of the happiness of the family, of which you and your husband are two inseparable parts.
5. be smiling and ease the atmosphere in the house with jokes and delightful comments. You should not say that what he has done to you has killed this spirit in you and beware of being desperate!
6. not scold him if he insinuates that he wants to get married to a second wife because he will be more stubborn until he achieves what he wants just to avenge his personality.
7. Lastly, supposing he does achieve his second marriage, you should continue acting according to the aforementioned points as if no difficult matter has happened. In other words, you should convince yourself with the reality. Between you and the other woman, who has the right to live her marital life with your husband, there are certain rights and duties that have been determined by the wise Islamic Sharia. Therefore, do not let the Satan throw you into jealousy against the verdicts of Islam, for then you would destroy your religion and lose your life and afterlife. Life is too short and temporary and it is not worth being selfish or wasting time in troubles.
You should realize that when it is difficult for some men to be alone with their wives, either because they have old children or too many guests come too often or the like, they begin thinking of another marriage for some reasons, the first of which is to satisfy their sexual lusts. I do not know whether your husband or your circumstances in the house are like this or not. The assessment is up to you.
Besides all this, I have a word to say to your husband and I hope he will read it with his mind and not with his desires. I would like to say:
Dear brother, I do not doubt that you look forward to a happy and easy life for there is no reasonable person on earth who wants the opposite, not even the scoundrels! Then, try to ponder on your state through answering the following questions:
1. How will you benefit if you destroy your life and get married to another wife? Will your conscience leave you free to be happy with the second wife while you have destroyed the first one?
2. What will you lose if you remain with your wife and children and stay satisfied with your fate?
3. Suppose that you get married to another wife, will you be able to treat your two wives equally and fairly?
After this, I invite you both to think of the following principles and agree, according to them, on what brings you happiness.
1. Be certain that Allah does not determine anything unless it has an advantage for man that most of the time is hidden to him, and when it appears to him, he thanks Allah for not fulfilling his wish, which he had wished for but was not granted.
2. This world and its pleasures are transient and man’s age is too short for him to achieve all his wishes. How many young people are there upon whom accidents come unexpectedly and cut the rope of their hopes and wishes!
3. The value of man is in his good deeds that lead him to Paradise, which has the everlasting bliss that no eye has ever seen, no ear heard, and no mind imagined.
4. It is great for a man to leave behind him after his death a nice picture about himself. This nice picture is contingent on one’s good morals and his respecting others’ rights, which makes others pray to Allah to reward him with good. Will the soul have a pleasure greater than this?

How can Islam, by permitting polygamy, want to solve problems whereas we find more problems in polygamy?
Question: My father has taken another wife. My mother is angry with him, and I am confused between them. From one side and according to my belief, I see that Islam does not permit anything unless there is a benefit in it, and from another side and according to the reality, I have pity on my mother though I do not approve of her anxiety, which may be the reason that led my father to get married to another wife. Would you please guide me with which of these views I should adopt? I hope that you will give me a glance at the subject of polygamy and the problems that result from it. How can Islam, by permitting polygamy, want to solve problems whereas we find more problems in polygamy?
The answer: As you said, Islam does not permit anything unless there are advantages in it, but those advantages are not achieved except by studying the subject in a real and comprehensive way. If getting married to a second, third, or fourth wife is just to satisfy a sexual desire without other humane purposes, it will not achieve the sought after advantages besides the motive, which will languish after the sexual intercourse and will then be replaced by problems that will destroy everything even the pleasure of sex itself.
Islam is very wise in permitting polygamy, but as for the appropriate situations and times to practice it, they will only be realized by the man who has been brought up under the shadow of Islam itself, and the one who does not care for justice (in dealing with his wives) will face many difficulties and be in a critical situation.
The Prophet (S) said, ‘He, who has two wives but does not treat them equally concerning sentiment and financial affairs, will come on the Day of Resurrection handcuffed and bent over, and then he will enter into the Fire[185].’
Following Islam according to practical conditions definitely solves all psychological and social problems, whether those of individuals or families. But following Islam according to one’s mood and worldly desires takes one to the forbidden division and complicates his problems.
An understanding Muslim woman would be better off submitting to the verdicts of the Sharia to emerge from the trial successfully; otherwise, she will be resurrected with those who deny the Sunna of the Prophet (S) and the verdicts of Islam.
Just as envy is a bad quality that one should drive away from his heart and conducts, so is the jealousy of women. When a wife harms her husband by doing something wrong out of jealousy, she violates the moral and legal limits.
Imam Ali (a.s.) said, ‘The jealousy of woman is unbelief and the jealousy of man is belief.[186]’ Would a Muslim woman accept to bring herself unbelief?
Imam al-Baqir (a.s.) explained the above-mentioned tradition by saying, ‘The jealousy of women is envy and envy is the origin of unbelief. When women become jealous, they become angry, and when they become angry, they disbelieve except the faithful ones of them.[187]’
Dear sister, do not live in confusion. For what is this confusion? Your father has chosen his way, and he is a part of you and you are a part of him. Your legal duty is clear. You have to be kind to both of your parents equally and with no difference, but with more help and respect for your mother because she is weaker and more tired as you say.
Give advice to your mother and father whenever you find a suitable opportunity. Tell them that a Muslim is one who submits to the verdicts of Islam and does not obey his desires and his personal opinions instead of obeying Allah.
[185] Mizan al-Hikma, vol. 4 p.291.
[186] Nahjol Balagha, short maxims.
[187] Wassa'il ash-Shia, vol. 14 p.110.

A woman’s husband has died; should I not allow her temporary marriage with my husband to satisfy her needs?
Question: My husband asked me to agree to his marriage with another wife in a temporary marriage, but I refused. However, when I pondered on the verdict of the Sharia in permitting temporary marriage, my mind and senses guided me to agree and encourage him to do so. I asked myself: this woman’s husband has died, but her sexual lust has not died. Then, how should she satisfy it? Unlawfully or by suppressing it or by lawful temporary marriage?
There is no doubt that the third choice is the right one, which Islam has legislated. However, Umar bin al-Khattab prohibited it, and it was his personal opinion and for a certain period, as I think. If temporary marriage was not prohibited (by Umar) and if this prohibition did not last for the following ages, the doors of adultery would not have been opened to society. It is mentioned in traditions narrated from the Ahlul Bayt (a.s.) that if temporary marriage was not prohibited, no one would commit adultery except scoundrels. No noble man will go towards adultery while the door of lawful temporary marriage is open to him. This door has been opened by the Wise Creator, Who is more aware of the truth of man and the requirements of his lust than anyone else.
Yes! This was my thought when I gave my husband my permission to marry that widow, but after that, he did me wrong. He went too far and exceeded the limits in practicing temporary marriage until he started ignoring me. He did not even think of the family’s needs.
I am still satisfied with the verdict of our great Sharia and will not allow myself or others to deny or suspect this verdict, but I hope that you can give some advice to men who are like my husband. Is this my fair reward? Has Allah not said, (Is the reward of goodness aught but goodness)[193]? Please, excuse me for lengthening my speech and thank you for answering me.
The answer: Dear faithful sister, it is mentioned in one of the traditions that “do not put wisdom near other than its people for you will wrong it, and do not prevent it from its people for you will wrong them”.
Dear sister, your situation results from your kindness and religious understanding, but your mistake is that you have put this wisdom near other than its people for whom it was intended. A man like your husband, whether you do him good or not, will carry out what he wants and will cover his actions with religion if he pretends to be religious; otherwise he will commit his wrong in an irreligious way, paying attention to nothing.
The problem lies neither in the verdict of the Sharia nor in your good situation, which pleases Allah, but the problem lies in your guilty husband. Be certain that Allah will not waste your reward because He is just and you are benevolent and patient. Besides, you will get your reward for your feelings towards that widow. May Allah bless you and make you succeed in your life and afterlife.
[193] Holy Qur’an, 55:60.

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