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I Caught My Husband Cheating, Now What?

Questioner

Anonymous

Reply Date

Mar 14, 2017

Question

I'm married to someone who is a year younger to me. We got married at a very early age, my husband was only 22 then. I feel I made a mistake. We liked each other and so we introduced each other to our families and got things settled soon enough to avoid more sins. Anyhow I caught my husband cheating on me after about 2 days from our wedding. He initially said me it was his ex-girl whom he had left behind for me without a proper excuse (I did not know about this girl) and so he was trying to explain. But his messages to her were not any such. I bore with him for a year giving him chances and excuses to change and finish matters with her soon. But soon I found out there were more girls. He had even said to a couple of them that he was married and divorced. I should not mention but most of them are Maldivians. (Just hate the sight of them now). Getting to know this, I was disappointed and so informed my parents and his. My parents immediately came over to speak which he did not respect and reciprocate for. His parents were simply not bothered. I decided to give up, yet wanted him. Somehow after a day or so we spoke to each other and got back. We were in good terms for some time and had fights in between again. But today, I saw some photos of some girls in his phone, but he refused to show me. He said no and started shouting. By the way, my husband has password for his phone which I don’t know from day one of our marriage. He says he doesn't like me taking his phone. It’s hard to explain the entire thing. There is more to this. I'm confused and I don’t know what to do. Why don’t I have the strength to let go of him for how cheaply he has been treating me? I feel so tired and disturbed. Please help.

Counselor

Answer


I Caught My Husband Cheating, Now What?

Answer:

As-Salamu ‘Alaykum sister,

Thank you for writing in. I am so sorry to hear of your situation with your husband. I can imagine it has brought you great pain, disappointment, and confusion. When our spouse cheats, it always reaches to the depths of our hearts with anguish. As your husband did, in fact, cheat on you a few days before your wedding, it was a kind of sign, sister, that this behavior may continue. While one always hopes that with love, forgiveness, and trying to rebuild for the sake of Allah (swt) that the cheating spouse will repent and stop, often they do not. Sadly, it may become a lifelong addiction for lack of a better term. It seems that your husband has not stopped, despite your kindness, accepting him back, and trying to move forward.

Please note sister that his cheating or talking to other women has nothing to do with you. It has all to do with him and his own insecurities as a man. Just the fact that he tells women he was married and divorced is a sign of not only a liar, but one who will go to great desperate lengths to get what they want in order to “feel better.” Not only is he committing severe haram acts, but if he is, indeed, cheating on you by sexual intercourse, he exposes you to the possibility of sexually transmittable diseases as well as the emotional trauma he has already caused you. Please do protect yourself concerning this.

You also said he did not respect or reciprocate when your parents tried to help, thus, illustrating he also has no conscious for his actions as he cannot even respect your parents – his wife’s parents and their desire to save the marriage by trying to help.

Sister, in sha’ Allah, you can try to save your marriage by stating that the behavior must stop and request that if he desires to be married to you, then he engages in counseling. I advise that you both seek marriage counseling.

As cheating is a severe sin in Islam, you may also want to consult with an imam for information on divorce if he decides he does not want to live Islamically or have an Islamic marriage, or if you have decided that enough is enough.

Sister you do not deserve this, and you do have the right to divorce. While Allah (swt) hates divorce, Allah (swt) also hates sins such as your husband’s. Allah (swt) created marriage to be sacred, loving, warm, respectful, trusting, and you deserve a marriage that is just that. I know you are tired, sister, and I know you are hurt. I am so sorry you have to go through this. However, you deserve to be happy and in a loving, committed Islamic marriage. I encourage you to try convincing him to go for counseling for his problems. Or if you chose, initiate divorce.

In the meantime, dear sister, please be good to yourself and surround yourself with family, supportive sisters, and enjoyable things. This may be difficult as the hurt is so strong, but in sha’ Allah, it will help with healing regardless of which direction your marriage goes.   Remember to keep close to Allah (swt) during this difficult time by praying, making du’aa’, and seeking Allah’s guidance. Allah (swt) knows best. He (swt) does love you, sister.

You are in our prayers sister. Please let us know how you are.

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About Aisha Mohammad-Swan

Aisha Mohammad-Swan received her PhD in psychology in 2000. Aisha worked as a Counselor/Psychologist for 12 years for Geneva B. Scruggs Community Health Care Center in New York with a focus on PTSD, OCD, depression, anxiety, substance abuse, marriage/relationships issues, as well as community-cultural dynamics. She is certified in Restorative Justice/ Healing Circles, Conflict Resolution, and Mediation, and is also a certified Life Coach. She is currently studying for her certification in Islamic Chaplaincy, and takes Islamic courses at SHC. Aisha works at a Women's Daytime Drop in Center, and has her own part-time practice in which she integrates counseling and holistic health. Aisha also received an MA in Public Health/Community Development in 2009 and plans to open a community counseling/resource center for Muslims and others in the New York area in the future, in sha' Allah.

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