Islamic marriage advice and family advice

Struggles in Being a Second Wife in Islam

Husband with his wives


Alhamdullilah that i found this site. This will be very helpful for me in the struggles that i am facing now. I am newly Islam, for more than one - year and still learning and studying.

I have an issue to my life,as being a second wife.  I feel lost and im really struggling with it. I have been married in a man whose already married and have a son. We are both expat in Saudi Arabia, and I met this man that he was struggling financially in his life, since that im the one who is working those time, i extend my hand to help him financially, until our relation became intimate. He proposed for marriage to me as a second wife.  Since that we gave importance, care and love toward each other, i accept his proposal. It stayed almost one year that we hide our relation to his first his wife, because he told me, that he want to inform his wife, when he will be in front of her, since that she was in her home country and it will be nice if he will inform only through phone.

I have grown in a culture that polygamy is not allowed, and its big haram to our family. So with all those year being with him, i have my full guilt and grieve because i felt that Im just like a mistress being secretly married to his first wife. So i forced him to go on his vacation and inform his wife about us, thou, it will be hard for him because his wife is his first cousin, their parents are siblings. He never stay to his wife for their four year of marriage, as he was working here in Saudi and she was in their home country, His only visiting her , 2x a year for maximum of 2 weeks vacation.

Well,he applied a 2 weeks vacation, and he brought his first wife in a nice place and resort to inform and talked to her, i dont know what just going on that time because he is not giving me messages , he just only called me in 4th day of his leave and he informed me that his wife already know about our marriage..I feel happy and glad  thinking that everything is okay as i never heard any bad comments or i dint receive any message from his wife.

In the first day he arrived back here in Saudi, i sent a message to his wife asking for an apology for  one of the reason causing her pain, a give a her nice message because i thought that she accepted it and everything is okay, but suddenly i received her responsed and she was very angry , Even she told me that in every prayer she will pray for my suffering and unhappiness in life.

I feel so sad and bad in her responded. But i keep quiet , rather i told her That Allah Bless Her..

I just informed my husband and keep asking him, what happened and what is his plan, what going on, but he just answered me that trust him, and dont reply her or give message her anymore. Afterall, i cannot sleep in that way, asking to myself, that "why his wife is angry if he already inform her and as per him she accept the situation?" ... i get curious with this,..... i want to know whats going on and what will happen. Even its not nice, i open their conversation in messenger and translated it from Arabic - English.

What i have found in the conversation really killed me, and give me lot of pain. I just found out that his telling to his wife, that we are not together anymore in our home, even he just told that "We know that this is only for a short time" , his wife insisting to divorce me, and he answered that "He will bring her here, and they will see the divorce paper in front of their eyes"...  He told to his wife, that she is the mother of his son, the official, his meat and blood. And lot of painful words that was unacceptable. Well, i my mind get full of thinking too much until i reached the point that i started to look job in other country to leave this place.

My husband knows me well, my actions, the way i think he can notice and read it, so he spoke to me, and asked me what happened to me so i informed him, what i have read in the messenger. He explained to me, that he just only telling that to his wife, because his wife wants us to divorce, but he dont want to lost me... so he lied in that way. He told that he just lying to his wife and once he bring his wife here, that is the time that he have to make her understand that im his wife too and she have no choice rather than to accept it.

He told to me that he love me so much and he cannot stay without me, he explained to me that every man in that situation will do the same, and he will correct it in a right time, that is just only hard for him because he and his first wife is apart. Well, i dont have doubt on his love, but now , how can i know the truth between of   what his telling to me and what his telling to his wife ?? Aside from the love i have on him, aside from the care and love his showing me, how can i be secure myself???? What is the real????

Now, even its form of evil, i started to get jealous to his wife, i started to think in a black and white way of thinking... They have a child and we dont have, he dont want even as his telling that his not ready yet, that after two years it can be.. But how can i conquer all of this?Well, his always and everyday telling me that he will never leave me, that im his wife too and he love me so much.... im just only doing prays to release and ease the pain and stress i have now.

What can i do? Most of time, im thinking to leave, and let him to be with his first wife. I really feel that i cannot accept of what he have told in their conversation. . Im really lost. I really love him so much, but i cannot stay in a situation like his denying me to his first wife and we keep lying..

I want to have a normal life, a life which is like being a wife whose proud to her husband,  even being a second wife , its okay as long as the first knows  but i dont know how. shall i wait to be everything okay, shall i believe him after of what i get to know from their conversation? shall i leave? what what is the right thing?

Help me.



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9 Responses »

  1. i understand your problems, you need to remember your life is allah not your husband and so what i mean is find other things to do in your time, it looks like you have nothing to do all day and thats why shaytan making you thinking all day in your head. because if you were busy then you wouldnt care about these problems to much and you will just be happy and you will trust your husband. i hope you find some hobby interest maybe Art, quran memorising, hadith just something keep you busy so you dont think all these bad ideas.

  2. Sister, I understand you compleet. I would never accept this behavior to. This is not islam. Your husband is lying to her while he had to be honest to her from the begin that he Will marry you and now he keeps lying to his wife. Remember one thing sis. This is not islam. Not every man Will do that to his wives. I Really understand your sitaution. Pray to Allah and ASK him if this man is good for you. Allah swt Will give you answer in sha Allah. Do intighara to ASK Allah If he is the one for you because ,this is Really a mess. If you want sis. We can contact each other So that I can support you. I become also a muslima.

  3. Hi,
    He is Pakistani, isnt he?
    I think to fulfil the family expenctation and traditions make them sociopath.....Maybe he realy wants to be with you. But because the family decided to marrie to his cousine, he did. Because the family decided he created that child. But all it doesnt mean it was really his wish. I dont try to protecting him, Because it also means he is not going to be honest with you or stay with you. As soon the family order him to leave you, and he cant keep it secret, he is going to do as they order to him. Too weak to stand by himself, how would he stand by you?

    • She had to translate Arabic so it's unlikely he's Pakistani. Although the desire to have more than one spouse isn't limited to Arabic or Pakistani men, most men would want this if possible, and there are women that would want two husbands if possible.

  4. You have chosen to be someone's second wife...which means you have accepted that you will never have that "normal" life you say you want.

    I'm actually really confused as to why it surprises you that your husband has an angry first wife that hates you on his hands. He lied to her about you, cheated on her with you, married you without even telling her...and you expected her to love you for all of this? It's not entirely your fault, though, her husband is equally, if not more, to blame. You both messed up, and now you're paying for it. Or, you are paying for it. Your husband is just being a selfish con artist that tries to lie his way through life in order to get everything he wants without any accountability for his actions.

    Also, if your husband has financial problems, he had no right to marry you in the first place. One of the conditions that must be fulfilled in order for polygamy to be halal for him, or any Muslim man, is that he must have the financial means to actually support all of his wives equally. His misuse of Islam aside, he just isn't a good person, my friend. He's a coward and he's a bum that's only using you for his own benefit. Get out of that marriage, and please don't become a second wife again. I'm saying that, because you said you want a normal life...and you're not going to get that by choosing an abnormal lifestyle.

    • Lindita,

      She left what she considered "normal" when she accepted Islam. From her perspective, this polygamy thing is a feature of Islam. She doesn't understand why the first wife is mad because although polygamy is new and difficult to OP, the first wife is a born Muslim and it should be part of her culture like Mormons have it. For Mormons the wives seek out sister wives, it's difficult for them but they do it. Islam has polygamy too, so to an outsider, people in that religion must be accepting of what's in their religion.

      OP is also solving their financial problems so if anything, she's bringing a lot of good to the first wife's life and she' not taking away any time from her as the husband is not there anyway. She's even trying to have a good relationship with the first wife and making sure things are in order according to Islam by having the marriage known throughout his family.

      Right now I would say that OP is a better Muslim than most Muslims. Your response is echoed by many Muslims that want a 1 on 1 relationship and want to ensure that polygamy is not practiced. Sharing is really difficult, even if you have your eye on the afterlife. But there is this:
      But he has not broken through the difficult pass.
      And what can make you know what is [breaking through] the difficult pass?
      It is the freeing of a slave
      Or feeding on a day of severe hunger
      An orphan of near relationship

      And also:
      Yusuf Ali: By no means shall ye attain righteousness unless ye give (freely) of that which ye love; and whatever ye give, of a truth Allah knoweth it well.

      By sharing she is giving out of what she loves and this isn't normal to her. There was a time in the past where women would share their husband to help out another woman for the sake of Allah but now people like the romantic movies they see and aren't as concerned about the afterlife. If OP wasn't a Muslim it's likely she wouldn't have accepted this situation. Hopefully, regardless of what happens, this woman receives the reward for her effort in accepting Islam and trying to be a good Muslim.

  5. Salam gg,

    The one thing you can trust is that your husband wants both wives. Unless he is forced to choose between you or her he is going to want to keep both. Now to accomplish this he is lying to his first wife. He's trying to get her used to the idea of him being married to you and coming up with excuses. Next when she comes over to the same country he'll have another excuse as to why he hasn't left you yet. The entire time, he doesn't want to leave you at all. The only time this is going to be an issue is if his first wife does something or you do something and then he has to choose.

    I think you wanted everything done in a halal way which is really good. This husband probably knew that being upfront wasn't going to work and he's comfortable lying so he has chosen this route. It is not Islamic for him to lie to his first wife and marry in secret. I think as long as you worry about doing the right thing and fear the afterlife you will make good decisions. Not necessarily easy decisions but ones that would give you a good reward in the afterlife.

  6. You were married to a man who had another wife and both of you kept it a secret. Why wouldn't the first wife be furious. It is not the second wife issue, but rather the lies and deceit that you and your husband were involved in that makes most people angry. Like many men, your husband is telling you one thing and telling his wife something totally different. He is the person you can not trust. You should divorce such a questionable man and move on with your life. In the US, we use the term he "saw you coming" as you are naieve and fell for whatever lies he told you.

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