Islamic marriage advice and family advice

My husband is a poor stepfather

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Assalam alaykum,

I became Muslim 10 years ago and my daughter is Muslim as well. She is 14. I married a second time but I have problems with my husband because he doesn't accept my daughter. Every time he complains because she doesn't help me and she is not like his sisters. My daughter did not grow up in a Muslim country as my husband did and I just expect her to study, clean her room and help me when I am tired.

That is not enough for him, and he says that she doesn't do anything for him. Three times I needed to bring her to hospital, and every time I was alone because he didn't believe that she was sick. That hurt me a lot and I told him but he doesn't understand my feelings, so when he is angry he says that he doesn't want to look after her because also her father doesn't look after her (her father is not a good Muslim and at the moment he is in prison).

I don't know what to do, I need and advice and I would like to receive an answer that I can show him. I am really sad. When he is angry he asks back the presents he gave to her and stops talking to her. I suffer too much for this situation, please help me. Thanks.


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39 Responses »

  1. Well, the fact is, he is not her father so it's unfair of you to expect him to treat your daughter like his own - more so, it's haram for him to take the role as her father, a child must know who is her proper family. It's not your husband's responsibility to be there for your daughter and look after her, that's your job and her biological father's job - it's not his fault that her father is in prison. I can personally understand why he would distance himself from your daughter. I, too, would do that if I married a guy who's got a child from another woman (which I would never do, because it's unfair to me and the child to get in to such relationship).

    You should have made sure where your husband stands in regards to your daughter before marrying him. You can't not discuss how he feels about her, get married to him without even being sure that he'll fully accept her - then, after marriage, complain when he doesn't.

    • You are so cold hearted and do not even have a spit of decency in you. You said he is not her father n shouldnt even treat her like a daughter, ok fine but isnt being a Muslim about charity n hecant thi k of it as helping his wife out? He could treat it as charity rather than as a step father. Dont you think? I have read quite afew of your answers to other posts and someone nedds to put you in your place. You are so rude, so uncaring. You cant be a true Muslim.

      • And see aslam how dare you call sana cold hearted I think that some if the comments I have read on this are absolutely terrible it is people like you all the let these men thinks its ok for them to treat their step children with cruelty. This poor women just needs her husband to not pick on her he doesn't have to become the child's father to do that it is just being a decent human being and giving a child a good life and making the child a good Muslim. Inshallah

        • Sorry not dee aslam, i meant adeena mohammadian I agree u are a very cold hearted person and u should be ashamed if ur self. If u were to ever get married have a child then get divorced then u will understand but at the moment u are chatting from the wrong end. Salaam. Ps sorry dee aslam u didn't understand ur post properly I thought u were talking about sana.

          • No worries hun, im happy that im not the only one that thinks this person is a sorry excuse for a muslim woman.

      • Remember that when you accuse someone of not being Muslim, and they in fact are, you are the one who'll become an apostate and disbeliever. It's fine that you think I'm a ..... and rude, I don't care at all what you think of me since I have no idea who you are and you don't know me. But do not question my belief in Allah. That's not your place to do, that's Allah's job.

        I haven't said anything that contradicts Islam, so relax and calm down, mate. Where in Islam does it say it's charity and an obligation to look after step children? That's your opinion that it is, it's not mine.

        • You are Muslim but the way you say things in this post and others as well, it seems you don't follow the rules or roles of a Muslim. You sound very careless about other peoples problem.There are many "Muslims" out there, but there are Muslims who only say they are Muslim but don't follows the rules,roles, and life of Islam. Next time, read/edit what you wrote and please don't add even more sorrow to the original posters. Of course you have your opinion of what you think but keep the snide remarks to yourself.

        • Why do you even come on this website? Seriously? Do you have nothing better to do than to come on here and spout the vindictive comments that you make - you horrible human being. What you posted has got to be one the WORST things I have EVER had the displeasure of reading - you can understand why he would distance himself from his wife's daughter?! If I was to get married to a woman who had children from another father, as long as they KNEW who their real father was then I would treat them as my own. Even the Prophet Muhammad did that. I may not know you but if you are like how you portray yourself on this, in real life, as a rude and nasty individual then I feel sorry for you and pity you.

          You have said in earlier posts that you don't have many friends or something? To be honest, I don't blame people for not wanting to be your friend and how you say "I would never marry a man with a child" - girl I'm telling you now - I feel sorry for any unfortunate person who marries you so if I were you I wouldn't be as picky.

          If I had children and my wife was as horrible as you and did this to my child, I'd throw her out in an instance.

          I don't care if this gets deleted - I'm sorry but SOMEONE had to say it and I'm surprised your comment was even ALLOWED by the editors to be posted.

        • adina,,

          so in the quran if something isnt told to you verbatim you cant critically think to apply it to other situations..

          its called critical shouldnt have to specifically say to be kind to children for you to do so....its JUST THE RIGHT THING TO DO.

          AND YOU can believe in ALLAH swt all day but if you as seen can still be coldhearted, piss poor personality.

      • Salaam, yes I agree astagjfirullah Adina u are very cruel and do not have a clue wat u are talking about and sana talk to your husban if he doesn't start to treat your daughter like a human being them leave him because it will affect ur daughter for ever. I am in a situation where my husband had been so cruel to my daughter and because I didn't leave him it has ruined her life.

      • dee islam<

        this goes to show you that a person can be a so called good muslim (do their salat, zakat, memorize quran and practice hijab

        and still be a vile, mean and cold hearted person with a heart of stone..if a person cannot have compassion for a child they really have no soul.

        i hope this woman never meets a man with children or ends up divorced with kids.

    • Adina,

      Don't u think the sister would have discussed her daughter with the husband before hand! Its not the stone ages! People discuss everything before marriage now. But noone can predict the future. People change! Something you don't seem to understand. Even though its not an islamic obligation doesn't mean the husband should be so cold hearted. When he married her he married her as a package, mother and daughter. He cant just have fun with the mother and shove the daughter in the corner. As a human being and father figure he should take care of her and treat her like her own. If i married a man with kids i would treat them with the outmost love and compassion. I would expect the man to do the same with my kids. Love and kindness does not cost anything but it gives people so much peace and happiness. : )

    • @ Adina:

      I feel sorry for the person that Wud end up with you.
      Your heartless, insensitive, cold and bitter. Sorry but ppl like u are worst than non Muslims u know y cuz u act horrible towards human beings that are in a problem state shame on u! How Wud u feel if u were this sister? Anyone can be in this position, Allah doesn't like proudness or arrogant ppl. We r supposed to help one another in need, relieve them of distress not throw things in their face. I've had a hard life too but I can nvr be like the way u r towards human beings. That goes against my role of being a Muslim. Ur Muslim by name. Y dnt u look at urself and seriously get a life and fix ur attitude so u can get sumwhere rather than bashing ppl that are already under tons of stress & u will get gunaah for making them feel worst.
      Ask Allah for forgiveness for being this rude to ppl! And work on u! We all face problems, tragedies, but wre not making things better by being mean or nasty towards other human beings. Instead ur bad naming our religion just stop with ur unnecessary feedback...

      • O' my Muslim Brothers/Sisters, you should know that Adina Mohammadian is your Sister. If you have noticed something wrong with the way she expressed her idea, wouldn't it have been better for you to just correct her by talking to her in an Islamic polite way, rather than being rude (calling her all sort of names/wishing bad for her) and committing the same mistake?! Who is now better than the other? May Allah forgive us and guide us all!!!

        • @Issah

          I HAVE explained to her in an Islamic polite way! I don't just talk like that to people over nothing you know lol but believe me I HAVE explained to her, for some reason she thinks that being rude, blunt and mean is better than expressing your words in a calm, kind way and with that sort of person, eventually you HAVE to speak to them in a nasty way.

    • May allah hav mercy upon u! Vry rude! Diz women needz sum1 2 help her nt run her down 2 da ground! Gosh u shud nt hav even commented coz it doesn't help! Diz iz her own flesh n blood! I guess u dnt hav any children? May allah mak easy on diz mother! I'm sure it hurtz everytym! Many men accept all da rules b4 marriage! Bt afta 2yearz den dey wana change it! I'm so sori! Bt insha allah. U will find away! Leave it in allahs handz!

    • Shame on you Adina.I am appalled by your lack of compassion.

    • "Well, the fact is, he is not her father so it's unfair of you to expect him to treat your daughter like his own..."

      so by that logic is it also ok for a step-mother to not care much about her step-children?

      last time i checked a step-parent should still try to treat their step-children like their own...

    • I cannot believe there is a person who would write such a cold uncompromising response?? Firstly when parents separate, and a new person comes in to the life of the step children the transition is difficult for children because the life they had a d support and love of their father has suddently been removed. This should be apporached with tenderness and kindness to aid a smooth progression for everyone.

      When a woman gets married again she does not keep hidden the fact that she has children from another marriage; i ln essence the new husband isnt just marrying a woman because she is making a booty call, therefore a new partner assumes that he will look after her and her children. At this juncture, it can be suggest that I have made a presumption; however my submission would be that that when a woman gets married while her father is alive and then later passes away she is entitled a lesser inheritance than her brother because she is cared for by her husband. Furthermore, because her husband is a male, he will get a larger inheritance from his father because there is a greater responsibility on him to provide for his wife and children.

      it would appear that during the Nikka of the people conditions can be stipulated, strickly speaking the new husband does not have a responsibility to the step children. However this is puritancial and a literal consideration, what has to be considered is what is customary. If in the society it is considered that the new husband should also care for the stepchildren then this is implicit within the nikka whether or not the condition is expressly stipulated within the same. Therefore; what should be expressly stipulated is that the new husband will not be responsible for the children otherwise he will be.

      Let me make myself clear here; nobody is saying that a man can sow his seeds where ever he wants and then be absolved from all his responsibility because his wife remarries, but approached reasonably. Its sad to see anyone devorce; but his love for his biological children should be unconditional, he should as much as humanly possible take care of his children and there well being which also includes their financial well being.

      I am not a scholar or a person well versed with the Quran; so before anyone says anything please forgive me if I am mistaken, however this was an important topic and I only write to air my view, should you dispute with me please do so in the best manner as our religion teaches spelling isn't to great either!

  2. Salaams,

    I agree that time should be taken to discuss "step parent/child" issues if you are marrying someone and you (or they) already have children. But sometimes even when that's done, something different can show up after the marriage.

    Even though your husband is not technically responsible for your daughter, there is basic human decency. Even a stranger would take you and your daughter to the hospital if she were ill, with no questions or doubt. Also, I don't understand how he feels that your daughter owes him anything (as he complains she does nothing for him), if he believes he owes her nothing. The lack of duty is in both directions, if you ask me, and in light of that it shouldn't matter to him what she does or doesn't do for you. According to his philosophy, it shouldn't be his business.

    If I were in your position, I would be asking myself not whether or not my husband is a good stepfather, but just is he a man with good character PERIOD. The way you describe him, he seems a bit self centered, arrogant, and likes to cause unnecessary arguments and stress. If I felt my husband were someone like that, I would have to be asking myself what I am getting out of the relationship myself, to be putting myself and my daughter through that.

    -Amy Editor

    • Aslaam

      I know this is not part of the subject but if you could hear me out I would appreciate it. The woman called Adina Mohammadian posted a comment on this page and it was one of the WORST things I ever read a human being could say. I understand you are one of the editors of this website, I would like to suggest to you to maybe ban her from here because I don't know WHO it was who allowed her to post such a vile comment but if you could take a look and maybe consider banning her because that comment isn't the only one she has made. I respect your decision however as an editor of this website.

  3. Dear sister sana
    I really feel for you I myself married a man and I had a daughter from a previous marriage my husband also had children from a previous relationship, first he said he would accept my daughter but then just two weeks after he began causing a lot of problems he began saying she is noisy she talks too much, why does she sit on your knee at the age if four. I went through 8 years with This torture I didn't expect much from him just for him to stop picking and giving me a hard time he expected me to leave her with my parents and live with him. I had three children with him in this time and eventually we seperated after 8 years of pain. When a women gets married she does not want to be on her own so she remarries which is perfectly halal In Islam and the man that marries this women should understand that this women has a child so I personally dnt blame u I am sure you would have discussed your child before marriage but men change their minds and it really angers me as ppl do not understand what a horrible situation a women can be put in. I have been to many sheikhs and the shariah council to seek a way and all I have been advised is to leave him. My husband is loved by everyone he meets and this also hurts me that everyone thinks that he is so lovely and he wouldn't hurt a fly but he has cut me up into tiny little pieces. My daughter is now eleven she is so disturbed that she finds it hard to interact with other ppl she finds it difficult to make friends. I have ruined her life because I didn't leave this man sooner. May Allah guide u and make your situation better. Ameen. Take care sister

  4. salam

    obviously to marry a woman who has children is mashallah a very high act and expression of faith - our brother your husband needs to be recognized for his efforts - but he needs to pull his socks up and be cool with your daughter.

    if he can't be nice then you actually have to consider re-negotiating your arrangement with this man. the welfare of your daughter is your only priority - not your husband's needs, nor your desire or need to be married. life is full of sacrifice and compromise and your daughter is starting her life and is new in the world and learning about right action from you and your husband.
    I'd never say divorce because Allah detests divorce and curses the person who comes between a man and wife so you both need to communicate about this matter because it is potentially very damaging to your daughter so you need to A) protect her B) protect yourself spiritually and emotionally

    There are many single mum muslimah ladies who choose not to remarry until their children have grown up because of the risk of encountering this sort of situation. And if marriage is half of deen, then patience is its key.
    Do istikhara and pray, ask Allah for guidance. Read the hadeeth and take advice from our beloved prophet. it sounds like you need to communicate as a family and you will be able to sort everything out. inshallah.

  5. Salam sister,

    So sorry you and your daughter are going through this. After hearing these stories, I am so scared to get married again! I am sure before he married you he fed you these dialogues that he will take care of her like his own daughter. And now he is a complete different person. These men never keep to their word. They just marry to enjoy the wife and don't want the kids around.

    One of my friends got married wiv daughters. Before marriage she warned the husband that her daughters come first! If he did anything to remotely upset them she's out of here! Masha Allah they are very happy. He deals with the daughters tantrums! Cooks for them and everything. He knows to win the mothers love, he has to go through the daughters.

    I know i would rather stay as a single mum then to marry again only for the husband to treat my kids badly. You have to take a stand sister! Be firm and tell him that you will not tolerate this behavour! Your daughter is important you cant sacrifice her happiness for yours. Get family involved to get him to change his attitude. If this does not work give him an ultamaitum! And give your daughter more love and attention at the same time. Tell him you will never leave your kids for a man!

    May Allah bring peace to you and your family : )

  6. Assalaamualaikam

    Even if she is not his biological daughter, she is part of his household and part of his family, and deserves respect, kindness and consistency from her stepfather. The Quran mentions many times that caring for children, regardless of their parentage, is very important, and it might be worth encouraging your husband to reflect on these verses.

    Some of the behaviour you describe sounds quite unreasonable - it amazes me that anyone could stand back while a child is in need of medical attention rather than trying to help. Asking for gifts to be returned and ignoring her will be giving her an inconsistent message and could cause her confusion and distress - children need consistency and unconditional acceptance, which your husband would appear to be undermining. It's also not good for him to be openly critical of her biological father in front of her; in addition to potentially damaging the prospects of her being able to establish a positive relationship with her father if he changes his ways, this behaviour is demonstrating that an authority figure engages in back-biting and gossip, which are not acceptable in Islam.

    It may be that your husband is struggling to fit into his role as a step-parent, but if he is willing to work at it, your family might benefit from some family therapy, and he could ask at the local masjid if he could speak with someone who has been in a similar situation of becoming a step-parent.

    In the meantime, continue to prioritise your daughter and help her. I pray that Allah eases your difficulties and helps you and your family find the best path for you all.

    Midnightmoon editor

  7. Issah, you're absolutely right.

    In any case, Adina has now been banned from this website due to an especially insulting comment of hers (that we did not publish).

    Wael Editor

    • Brother Wael, I HAVE explained to her in a polite Islamic way so I do agree with Issah but I'm just saying that I have tried to explain to her in a polite manner. I meant what I said - I don't speak like that to people unless final resort and absolute necessary and even then I don't intend to hurt their feelings. With people like Adina, polite words go in one ear and out of the other so that is why she is getting all those backlashing feedbacks because she's the type of person who uses the phrase "I am blunt and speak my mind" as an excuse to people rude and nasty to people.

  8. I'm really impressed and proud of u guys for standing up for what's right ,bravo!

  9. I am really happy alhamdollilah that I came across Sanas story because for so many years I have felt confused that why do people not understand that there is a child involved and why do I get the feeling everyone thinks i am the bad guy for not giving my daughter up. But now I see that a lot of people do actually understand and only a handful that think that children are not that important, well not as important as the husbands feelings even if he is being cruel. I hope to Allah all these comments have actually helped sister sana

  10. Thank you Wael, shes made alot of people wose off coz of wot she has written. I saw red wen I saw her reply for sana, I justt had to say something. Anyway, all is good. Thank you once again.

  11. why ban her you could have gave her a chance warned her not to be rude again.

    • They have. Several times. I've even replied to a comment of hers from a previous question saying that she needs to be less rude and more helpful but she thinks being a nasty individual is the attitude to get through life.

    • Assalaamualaikam

      Banning people is a last resort which unfortunately we have had to do in this situation. We address difficult and sometimes controversial issues on this website, so it's almost inevitable that sometimes people will disagree with each other - however, people are still required to treat each other with respect and in accordance with the site guidelines. In accordance with Islamic guidance, we try not to publicise it if we are trying to work with a poster to moderate their language, so that their privacy is maintained, but rest assured that this is not a decision made without significant consideration and discussion.

      InshaAllah our sister will be able to reflect on this experience and use it to improve her communications with others in the future. For now, however, we need to look out for the people who ask for help here.

      Midnightmoon editor

  12. oh my bad Asim im kind of new to this site maybe she did deserve to get banned i thought she was a nice person.

  13. Thanks midnightmoon you are definitely right.

  14. Assalamualikum dear Sana
    I feel that discuss this matter openly to your husband & daughter cause both you & your daughter will be traumatised, she will hate you for the rest of life if she feels that your decision has made her life unstable or insecured.
    You will always be pulled between the duty of a wife & mother, seeing her hate you will not let you rest in peace.
    She is an adolescent so it will be hard for her accept you present husband.
    You should have set boundaries before, it's bit late but no harm in having an open discussion not mother to daughter but a discussion between two adults.
    I'm way older than your daughter have been in similar situation so I know what I'm saying & really can feel what she is going through.
    May Allah bless you & family & give you patience & hidayat.

  15. Get yourself a proper Muslim husband and you won't have these problems

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