Answered by Ustadha Zaynab Ansari, SunniPath Academy Teacher
If a wife disobeys in matters like Hijab or dressing properly or private relation, what should one do? It seems that women these days don't pay respect and honour to husbands as is desired by religion & society. What should be done in such a case if wife tries to dominate the husband & disputes on small matters? It's been 10 months to our marriage and I'm getting frustrated on each day passing.
In the Name of Allah, the Gracious, the Merciful.
Praise be to Allah.
May Allah's peace and blessings shower upon our beloved Messenger.
I pray this message finds you and your wife well.
What you may want to realize is that change comes from within, rather than from without. Thus, while you may implore, ask, or demand your wife to wear hijab and dress properly, ultimately, it is up to her to carry out her religious obligations.
As the head of the household, you certainly have a right to ask and expect certain things of your wife.
Narrated 'Abdullah bin 'Umar:
Allah's Apostle said, "Surely! Everyone of you is a guardian and is responsible for his charges: The Imam (ruler) of the people is a guardian and is responsible for his subjects; a man is the guardian of his family (household) and is responsible for his subjects; a woman is the guardian of her husband's home and of his children and is responsible for them; and the slave of a man is a guardian of his master's property and is responsible for it. Surely, everyone of you is a guardian and responsible for his charges."
[Bukhari, Volume 9, Book 89, Number 252]
A man will be asked about the members of his household. However, your wife is an adult, and as such, she is responsible before her Creator.
If she gets involved in petty disputes with you, take the higher path. Don't get pulled into useless argumentation. Do consider some more effective means of communication.
You've only been married 10 months, so you need more time to get to know each other. Surely your wife has some good qualities. Focus on those.
It's fine to let her know how you feel about these issues, but understand that she must come to these obligations in her own time. Offer her whatever encouragement you can, whether it's good literature on hijab, taking her to religious gatherings, or introducing her to pious Muslimahs.
Even more important than focusing on outward hijab is the crucial matter of iman. Do you pray together? Do you go to the masjid? Do you study together? Perhaps you could interest her in some courses here at SunniPath. Taking them together would be an excellent way of learning and growing closer together, insha'Allah.
The key is to be kind, loving, and patient, while focusing on ways to strengthen her iman.
I pray Allah Most High bridges the gap between you and your wife.
Please see the following articles for more information:
The Fiqh of Right and Wrong: Teaching Non-Hijabis, Commanding the Good & Forbidding the Wrong
On How to Advise those Not Practicing
Effect of a Sound Marriage: Rights of the Husband and Wife
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