Assalaam u alaykum,
My brother is experiencing marital problems with his wife. They are married for one year. In that time, she has left him and returned to her parents home on numerous occasions and on the last occasion of her doing so,:
1/. She blamed my widowed mother (My brother made it very clear to her -before marriage- that he had made a promise to my marhoom father that he would live with my mother, in the event of my fathers death) My sister in law agreed to live with mother. There was little or no inteference in their marriage from my mother who is quite independant. My sister in law claims interference. My mother did, at one stage attempt to correct her dressing by explaining that Muslim women dress with modesty and cover their bodies. My sister in law was wearing miniskirts and tops that exposed her cleavage and body and wearing garish bright make up and colouring her hair orange. She was also dressing this way outside of her home and her parents and family encouraged this travesty of islamic morals and values. Her husband attempted to speak to her (very gently) and try to dissuade her from dressing thus but she persisted.
2/. She wants to live on her own – constantly citing my mother and younger sister as reasons. She is very competitive with my unmarried younger sister and fought with her constantly. My sister tries not to get involved and embroiled in arguments with her. Her family also encouraged this.
3/. My brother earns a halaal income and encouraged her to stay at home but she refused saying that she wanted to work to be financially independant. Muftisaab, he has provided her with a beautiful room and newly renovated bath room and new clothing every month since she married. She also has a helper that takes care of all the cleaning of her bedroom and washing and ironing clothing. All she had to do was cook a meal every day – she is incapable of doing that small task and so my mother used to do that. Her only “job” was to beautify herself for her husband (not all the the ghair marhameen at work!)
4/. Her parents encourage her to make exhausting financial demands on her husband and be disobedient and wilful. She did not want children but at my brothers urging – she stopped using the contraceptive pill and fell pregnant. Now her parents encourage her to use this poor innocent unborn child as a pawn in her games.
5/. She constantly taunts my brother saying that she will not return (and he will not see his child!) unless he provides her with her own house. My mother suggested that they move into the outbuilding (thus allowing my brother to feel that he fulfilled the promise to his marhoom father whilst allowing my sister in law the “freedom” that she so craves) She has refused to compromise. (This is also the result of bad influence of her family) and insists on moving to another totally new location.
6/. In attempting to resolve the issue – our families met with a few moulanas including a muftie from the area where she lives. This was a futile attempt to resolve the issues – since one of the moulanas involved his (very modern and supposedly “forward thinking”) wife. Our family saw it as a personal matter – to be dealt with by the Ulema only (not their wives!) and this woman did not help the situation but in fact, caused more problems. Also the moulanas were biased (being friends of my sister in law’s brother) and kept advocating divorce.
7/. Both parents of my sister in law were previously divorced and as such, they lack an understanding of the sanctity of marriage in Islam and the enormity of a decision to divorce. They do not advise their daughter to reconcile but keep steering her to the wrong path.
8/. I was present at the meeting and suggested reconciliation and counselling as an alternative and following the Islamic route for doing so but her family refused to allow this and she herself was averse to it. There were accusations flying around and everyone was angry.
9/. She claims that my brother hit her – but cannot specify an instance when he did so. He says that he did grip her face lightly in anger because she was verbally abusing him and he rebuked her once. and my mother was witness to this.
10/. Her family are also practising sihr. Her mother used to provide her with numerous taaweez and items to put into her husbands food etc
Muftisaab, there are days when she makes him believe that she is returning home and he visits her at work. Her family has been abusive towards him and her brother assaulted him on one occasion. Then there are other days – when she tells him she is not returning. His life is in turmoil. He has not issued a single talaaq to her and she is living at her parents home for about 4-5 months now. Her parents do not allow her to take my brother’s calls at home and are spreading rumours about him – saying he abuses drugs and alcohol and accusing him of vile deeds. He is regular in his salaah and very Islamic in his lifetstyle.
My question to you, respected Muftisaab, is what path must my brother take now? He is concerned for his innocent unborn child (due next month) and afraid for the baby to be raised by people who are so unislamic in their lifestyle and will not allow him access to this child. Also, what of his nikaah? There were no talaaqs issued. Please give us some advice as to how to proceed from here.