Wa ‘Aleikom Salam dear sister,
I am so sorry to hear of all the pain you have endured, especially the sexual abuse. It must have been very difficult keeping that inside of you all those years. I am glad to hear, however, that you have sought professional help and received a diagnosis. You presented a lot of issues here, so I will do my best to address each one in order of presentation.
First, I am concerned about your suicide attempts. While you did not say how, where, or the outcome, I can only hope there has been some follow-up from a professional. If not, please promise yourself, make a written contract, that you will never attempt suicide again. Give the contract to someone close to you after you sign it. Not only is it a grave sin, but you have children and a husband who need you. Also, please get the number for the suicide hotline in your area and keep it somewhere convenient.
In sha’ Allah sister, you are still in treatment. If you are not, I would highly suggest getting back in treatment. In addition, you may want to suggest to your husband that he participate in a support group for men with mentally ill spouses. Your therapist can provide a resource for this in your area or you can look online or in the phone book. This will help him cope with your illness and understand it better. He would also receive support from the other group members regarding any stress, emotional pain or daily problems he is experiencing due to it.
Sister, you must understand it is not easy living with someone with mental health issues. And, it is not easy living with a husband who you feel doesn’t take your feelings seriously. May Allah (swt) bless you both in your journey of healing your marriage, as you sound like you both love each other very much, despite the confusion and pain that is going on in your marriage. I would also suggest that you both get marriage counseling to address your issues with communication, feelings, and your sexual life.
I can imagine this is all very confusing for your husband as he does not know about your sexual relationship with his nephew and the resulting child which he believes to be his. This brings up another issue dear sister. AboutIslam scholar states: “your child is not your child because you did not give birth to him, nor is your ex-husband his father as he did not father him. Allah (swt) says:
“…He has not made your adopted sons (truly) your sons: these are but (figures of) speech uttered by your mouths — whereas Allah speaks the (absolute) truth: and it is He alone who can show you the right path.” (33:4)
Based on the above teachings, you are not allowed to give an adopted child your own name. If this way is done in the past prior to embracing Islam, you should change this name. Allah (swt) says:
“Call them by their (real) fathers; this is more equitable in the sight of Allah; and if you know not who their fathers were, (call them) your brethren in faith and your friends.” (33: 5)
While your son from your husband’s nephew is not adopted, the above reference is indicative of Islam’s stance that a child’s father is known. Further stated regarding a similar issue is “what he did wrong, however, was to adopt a child that is not his and to claim that he is his own. That is one of the major sins, and it is absolutely forbidden by Shari`ah.” Again sister, while your husband has no knowledge that the child is not his, there are some serious implications in the whole matter which must be resolved. I highly suggest that you submit your question again to our “Ask the Scholars” section or contact your local imam, as I am not an Islamic scholar but do feel you need guidance from one.
Additionally dear sister, I urge you to repent to Allah (swt) and ask for His forgiveness as well as His guidance in this very serious matter. I also ask that in sha ‘Allah you utilize the tools you were given by your therapist to deal with your sensitivities and emotions so this will not happen again. More important is drawing close to Allah (swt) for guidance and protection through prayer, du’aa’, dhkir and Qur’an reading. Surround yourself with uplifting Muslim friends who you can enjoy sisterhood with, and they can also be of support to you. You have many wonderful things to offer dear sister, and yes, Allah (swt) has blessed you with much. However, you do have a lot of things to clear up and make right with Allah (swt), your husband, as well as yourself.
You are in our prayers. Please let us know how you are doing.
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