Indeed Allah Ta'ala has given the husband some degree of authority over the wife to create a harmonious balance in the marriage. It is unimaginable that Allah Ta'ala would afford the husband a position of authority for him to oppress his spouse. Surely the purpose of such a position is to give him a sense of responsibility to guide and steer the relationship in the right direction.
The husband should have a flexible approach coupled with softness and kindness and attentively tend to his family responsibilities by being soft hearted and easy. However, at the same time he should instill in them gratitude, awareness of the plight of the less fortunate and a true consciousness of death and the hereafter.
Command to Communicate in Kindness
The husband is commanded in the Noble Quran to maintain a relationship of kindness and harmony with his wife Allah says: “…communicate with them (wives) in kindness, for if you dislike them (for some deficiency) then perhaps you may dislike (a trait) wherein Allah has placed in it much good.” (Quran 4:19)
Errors and mistakes are bound to happen. From this verse we discern that the husband should not attempt to justify wrong doing by blaming it on the wife's weakness or failure. The husband should react with dignity and be forgiving.
Nabi r said: “True strength is not by overwhelming (an adversary) in combat. Indeed a strong man is one who controls his egos at the time of anger” (Bukhari & Muslim)
The husband as the head of the home must endeavor to always put his family first.
Hobbies, other occupations, activities, friends, sports, etc. should not deter him from fulfilling his responsibilities to his family. The most deserving of his attention are his wife and children.
Undoubtedly there is place for every individual in the family to have their own space and time, however this should be done in moderation and not to the detriment of the family relationship.
Physical, Verbal & Emotional Abuse
By virtue of the wife being directly under the shelter and care of the husband, this automatically gives the husband a form of ascendancy and advantage over his wife. When a dispute arises the husband uses this advantage to dominate his wife and becomes abusive and indifferent towards her. The husband's conduct makes her vulnerable as the wife realizes that she is dependent on the husband for food, shelter, clothing, etc. and endures the abuse for her own well-being. The cruel husband threatens her by unleashing a barrage of verbal and emotional expletives, and at times even beating her. Such cruelty has become common today. The husband should daily ponder over his accountability to Allah and shame himself for abusing someone weaker than him.
Discussion – Communication – Trust
Another important aspect the husband needs to be considerate about is mutual consultation and discussion with the wife. There are many things which commonly affect both spouses and is of concern to both. Honest communication, consultation, and seeking the wife's opinion in a matter is an important Sunnah. This will breed confidence in the relationship and will help to avoid misunderstandings and arguments. Lack of communication is a common problem in many relationships today. A small problem that could be overcome by proper communication sometimes becomes an explosive situation that spirals out of control due to lack of communication. Leaving the wife in suspense and distressed is unbecoming of the husband.
Protecting the Gaze & Chasity
The malady of casting lustful gazes at strange woman has reached epidemic proportions. Men from all walks of life suffer from this disease which can be chronic if not treated. This sickness is highly detrimental to one’s spirituality and physical sexual abilities. It ekes out the strength and virility of a person and renders him hopeless to fulfill the physical needs of his wife.
Resolving Issues Amicably
Whenever a disagreement arises the husband should measure the situation and apply himself with patience and wisdom. He may be faced with unsavoury remarks or continued whining and nagging from the wife over a particular issue. It is at this point that the husband mettle is tested – does he also fly into a rage and castigate the wife for her misbehavior or does he use the opportunity to show his greater resistance and ability to steer the ship out of stormy waters.
Allah Ta’ala has given him this greater degree of authority for this very purpose – to steer and control the ship of marriage to safe waters when the weather becomes stormy. An intelligent husband is able to resolve a matter with respect and dignity whenever such a situation arises.
Watch your words – “Talaaq!”
The husband should be extremely cautious about his statements and intentions. There are times when a man blurts certain statements in a fit of rage and the statements could effect a divorce or at least have the potential of divorce being counted. In a fit of rage the husband utters things that he regrets and wishes he never said them.
May Allah Ta'ala grant every husband the pleasure and recognition of Allah Ta'ala through kindness and consideration for his wife.
Darul Ihsan Social Department