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Stressed Out and Insecure Mother, What To Do?

Questioner

N (36-female-Sweden)

Reply Date

Dec 18, 2018

Question

As-salamu `alaykum dear counselor. Thank you for your efforts. I am a mother writing. I come from a very messy family background and so does my husband, but not as messy as mine. I am the kind of person that is totally stressed out and very insecure. Anything that I do makes me stressed and I find it difficult to take decisions. I don’t know how to build an Islamic, calm environment at home. My husband and I are unsure of what to do for the kids. As I come from a very messy family, I want to put my soul in the kids.

My husband wants me cleaning and cooking all day long. I am not sure about this and it makes me stressed. I am not that kind of a person that is very socially involved. I am a very boring person. I try to meet people to learn how people talk to each other, but people are not interested in becoming friends with me, I am too stressed and they can, of course, feel it. No one seems to like being with bad and boring me. I feel I am a bad mother. I give zakat and pray my regular prayers but there is something wrong, not right, in our family. I don't have much time with my kids anymore since I started cleaning the house shiny every day. When should I study my religion, when should I start educating my 4-year-old? I don't have much time with my 10-month-old daughter.

In the country where I live, we don't have Muslim social workers or anything of that kind. Muslims are a great minority working in society here, so where should I turn? Sometimes I think of giving my children away to the authority here and pray for them to become Muslims. That is better then becoming a person with a choking personality. I try to find information on the Internet to help me through my problem but I haven't found exactly what I am looking for. I also turn people away because of my bad behavior.

At my parents’ house, I was always disappointed in my parents and their behavior and mistrust, so I actually can't trust people anymore and, therefore, I behave badly: If your parents cheat you then how can other people not do the same? At kindergarten, they say that my son needs to work with his social behavior. I think he got it from me. What should I do for all this? I never imagined my life would be like this. This is breaking Allah’s rules to mankind

Counselor

Answer


Stressed

In this counseling answer:

•By developing some easy routines, you can save time and energy for other things. Do not look at the whole house, trying to keep it “shiny.” Focus on one room a day for a deep cleaning and do light cleaning in the rest of the house. Put your daughter in a high chair, stroller, or playpen with some toys near where you are working.

• Have your son help you with whatever you are doing. Give him simple one-step tasks to do. For example, “Please throw this in the garbage,” “Please put all of these toys in this basket,” “Please put all of the lemons in the refrigerator.” Be sure to thank him and compliment him on doing the job well.”


As-salamu `alaykum, dear sister Sara.

In your question, you brought up different areas of concern.

The main points I see are your relationship with Allah, with your children, with your husband, with your parents, with others in your community, and with yourself. Your concerns are very important but they are not impossible to change for the better. There is always hope and there is always Allah’s forgiveness when we make sincere tawbah (repentance).

Do not focus on all of the things that you want to change at one time. Choose one thing in each area that you want to work on. Then make sincere tawbah to Allah and ask for His forgiveness and guidance. Make the intention for the change and focus on that for a whole month. If you go back to the old habit, then you must start over again by making tawbah, asking Allah’s forgiveness and try again. Even if you have trouble doing this, in sha’ Allah, Allah will reward you for every effort that you make.

When you have completed one month of this new way then you can move on to another habit. Start with whatever habits you know are the worst or areharam (forbidden by Allah).


Check out this counseling video


With two small children in can be very difficult to keep the house clean, cook, and still have time to spend with them and on yourself. Do not underestimate the importance of these seemingly simple chores—as mothers and wives, we spend a good part of our lives doing them.

By developing some easy routines, you can save time and energy for other things. Do not look at the whole house, trying to keep it “shiny.” Focus on one room a day for a deep cleaning and do light cleaning in the rest of the house. Put your daughter in a high chair, stroller, or playpen with some toys near where you are working.

Have your son help you with whatever you are doing. Give him simple one-step tasks to do. For example, “Please throw this in the garbage,” “Please put all of these toys in this basket,” “Please put all of the lemons in the refrigerator.” Be sure to thank him and compliment him on doing the job well.

While you work, talk with your children about all of the blessings that you all have in your lives. “We are so blessed to have a wonderful home,” “We are so blessed to be Muslims and have the Qur’an to guide us.” Let your son respond to what you are saying and listen to his ideas and opinions.

Pick up clutter and children’s toys and do a quick “company is coming” check of the area your husband first sees when he walks into the house. If you can, burn some pleasant smelling incense and have yourself and the children cleaned up and dressed in pleasing clothes.

When he has rested for a bit, ask him to play with the children while you get dinner served. Remember that he is out in the world dealing with many difficult people, situations, and temptations. Your home should be a retreat for him and you to focus on each other and your children.

It is your responsibility to try to create harmony in the home. This does not mean that you cannot ask for help. One wonderful way to develop mercy between you is to read Qur’an together, even if it is only for 10 minutes a day. Have your husband put your son on his lap while you hold your daughter. Then have your husband read aloud to all of you. Make this a daily habit.

You are not alone. Many mothers of young children experience similar problems in their lives. Trust in Allah, He has sent you precious blessings in your children. They are in trust to you. They will also be a test to you. Ask Allah for guidance and He will send it.

You can trust in Allah. You can be secure in the fact that Allah has sent us all that we need to succeed in this life. Look around you everywhere for His signs and blessings. The past cannot be changed but we have many opportunities to change ourselves one step at a time.

I look forward to hearing about your efforts, struggles and successes.

***

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