Islamic marriage advice and family advice

Trapped in a loveless marriage; what should I do?

Self respect When I met my husband to be, he acted like he was a very patient, kind and tidy person. After marriage, I found out he was the exact opposite. I've been living like this for five years now, and I feel so depressed.

He is stingy with money and gives me nothing for my own pocket. He buys everything second hand (even the bed which I caught scabies from) rather than buy new items for the house. He treats me like the hired help and even tells me when I can and cannot talk to him. He is always making nasty comments about my appearance to the point where I've become very self-conscious. He is very messy and the whole house has been turned upside down because of his hoarding. We can't even invite friends round because of this mess.

If I tidy up, within a week, he's created an even bigger mess. If I say anything about the mess, he starts to shout at me to get out of the house and always threatens me that he will give me talak.

Sometimes I think that I am not worth anything to anyone, and I have started to resent him for ruining my life.

Can anyone advise me on what to do, as I have no friends or family to fall back on if I leave my husband?


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6 Responses »

  1. Salaams,

    There are several aspects of your post to address. The first one that stood out to me was your mention that he is a hoarder, and as a result lives in a dirty home. This recurs even after you try to clean it.

    Hoarding is actually a very serious mental illness. If your husband is a true hoarder by clinical standards, he's not going to be able to overcome it by willpower even if he made up his mind to change. It's a very deep-seated anxiety disorder, and he would need professional help to successfully overcome it. Hoarders often need a severe event (like the threat of their home being condemned or losing their children to the state because of the filth) to even consider making a lifestyle change, and even then it's often a long and difficult journey ahead for them.

    The second aspect I noticed is rights and duties when it comes to marriage. Islamically, he is obligated to provide for your basic needs: food, clothing, and shelter. It would be kind and generous to give you money of your own to use as you wish, but he is not required to do so. Likewise, he is free to provide your needs in any manner he sees fit; so if he is financially limited to buying you second-hand clothes then you have to accept that he is still within his rights. I agree with you that some things should be bought new because of health issues (like mattresses, underclothing, or baby furniture), and as the husband he is responsible to keep you safe and healthy. So certainly the fact he bought a used bed that caused scabies is a concern. But outside of that, he is not required to purchase EVERYTHING brand new, even if you prefer that.

    The last issue I am noticing is his overall treatment of you in daily interactions. Husbands and wives are enjoined by Allah to treat one another with respect and care. As Muslims, we are not even to hurt one another's hearts. We are to speak kindly, deal with one another generously, and overlook one another's faults as much as is reasonable.

    If he is telling you when you can or cannot speak with him (not just saying, "I don't feel like talking right now, maybe later"), calling you by names or using nasty remarks to reference you, yells at you, and threatens you, this could be defined as emotional and verbal abuse. It shouldn't be present in a Muslim marriage, and you are not obligated to tolerate it.

    Given all the issues you presented, I think the best course of action I could advise to you is to separate from him. You said you don't have any family/friends to go to, so it sounds like you are going to have to make some significant changes for yourself if you want to move forward with this suggestion.

    First of all, you will need to get a job if you don't already have one (I'm assuming you don't because you mentioned he won't give you money to spend, as if you did have one you would be spending the wages you earned on yourself as is your Islamic right). Getting a job will help you get up some funds to find a weekly hotel or cheap apartment, or even move in with a woman looking for a female roommate in the classifieds; and support yourself independent of him.

    Once you've been able to successfully separate, I believe you should tell him that in order to save the marriage he should agree to counseling: individual counseling for his hoarding issues, and marital counseling to deal with the dynamic going on between you two.

    If he doesn't agree to do anything to try to help make things better or overcome his shortcomings, then you have a basic issue of commitment towards you and the marriage. At that point I would advise you to make istikhara to see what path Allah wants you to take regarding the marriage. Then, in shaa Allah, whatever He wills will be made easy for you.

    -Amy Editor

  2. hi,

    im sorry to hear regarding ur rough life...

    i am looking for a wife to love if u want a loving and happy life then leave ur husband and get to know me

    i have been thru so much myself so looking to start a fresh inshallah

    Allah knows best!!!

    • Salaams,

      It's not appropriate to ask someone to leave their spouse to marry you. On top of that, it's very tacky trying to solicit for a spouse on an advice website, since there are other websites that specifically serve that purpose.

      -Amy Editor

  3. salam,

    ur correct sister amy, and im very sorry for my actions,i repent and will not repeat this vile act ever again...

    hope the people have the heart to forgive me inshallah

    thank u

  4. salam sis. the best thing you can do make dua and talk to him. i hope he will be good husband one day to you AMIN!!!

  5. I read your post and feel I am being treated very similarly by my husband. The difference is that I have always been the bread winner and pay for everything. 1 month ago I got laid off from my work as an architect and he told me the same day that he wanted a divorce. I just had back surgery 4 days ago and he has not been around to help. He told me the morning after my back surgery that he was leaving and wanted a divorce as inlaid there in pain. That was Thanksgiving day. He left after drinking a magnum of wine and did not come back that night. The night before the surgery, he threatened to not take me to surgery in the morning and threatened to not pick me up after I had it scheduled for 2 weeks and he promised would take me. The surgery was serious and the surgeon talked to him after and he lied to me and said I would be recovered in 1 day. I spoke with the surgeon the day after Thanksgiving and he said it would be 2 weeks of recovery. My husband lies about everything. He is a pathological liar. He is selfish and mean. He lied about being muslim for 7 years. He lied tonthe priest that married us and told hom he had no religion. A year after we were married and I asked him to follow through on converting, he told me he was baptised muslim. I would have never married a muslim man. I am catholic and do not agree with the muslim faith nor it's teachings. He lied about something extremely important in my life. Now he watches muslim videos late at night and talks about extremist behavior of his father. I want out of this marriage and this life with this man. He is torturing me and verbally abusive to me every day. He is a slob and does not pay bills. He is fat and ugly and does not take care of himself. He knows as a Christian I treat people well and do the right thing, but I am no longer going to be conned by this lying muslim. He does not have a green card that is valid and has not paid his taxes for 3 years. How do you get away from such an awful person and make sure they do not hurt you?

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