Due to social isolation measures, me and my husband now work from home. He is not used to it because he used to be out all the time and he isn’t enjoying staying at home.
He is becoming very aggressive and nervous towards our kids. I keep telling him to calm down but to no avail.
He says he can’t control his anger and that he feels down and irritated. How can I help him?
In this counseling answer:
• Depressed Husband: Find a room for him where he can go during the day without disturbance.
•Letting the eldest child help to keep the younger children entertained may help while you are both working.
• If you live next to relatives or there is a daycare (essential services) perhaps that is an option.
•Try to provide a listening ear for your husband. Ensure he knows you are there for him should he feel like talking.
• If his feelings and behaviors continue despite your efforts, please do look into Telecounseling to assist your husband in regards to his feelings.
As salamu alaykum sister,
Shokran for writing to our Live Session. I’m sorry to hear about the situation with your husband. These are very trying times with everyone sheltering in place at home. While it is not something that we are used to, most of us anyhow, it is not something that cannot be done.
Trying to Find a More Private Place in Home
Perhaps your husband needs to find a place in the home where it is more isolated and quieter. I am not sure how your home is set up but maybe if you could find a room for him where he can go during the day without disturbance would be more conducive.
If this is not possible perhaps having the eldest child help to keep the younger children entertained may help while you are both working. Calmness during work can be difficult when working at home with children.
However, a flip schedule may work well if the eldest child is too young to help. If possible, perhaps you can take turns working opposite hours to ensure there is a break for both of you and to ensure the children are taken care of. A break in routine on a daily basis may help.
If Permitted, Nearby Relatives or Daycare
I am not sure of the sheltering in place rules where you live but if you live next to relatives or there is a daycare (essential services) perhaps that is an option.
I know of several families who are using daycares as there is no other choice and they are essential workers. I’m not sure how that would apply to your situation but it may be worth looking into for the time being.
Trying Times-Fear and Depression
Sister these are trying times. Perhaps this is a test from Allah swt, which will either bring us closer together as families for the sake Allah or will make us weaker and cause division.
Check out this counseling video
I kindly advise that you speak with your husband about how he is feeling. Perhaps he is scared and worried about the future. This may cause some people to feel very irritable, nervous and angry. He has already told you he feels “down” (depressed). These types of negative emotions and actions can be rooted in fear.
Sister try to provide a listening ear for your husband. Ensure he knows you are there for him should he feel like talking.
Be supportive but on the other hand don’t let him be emotionally abusive to the children or you. You may wish to suggest to him that you and he pray together along with the children as a family.
This will bring you strength and calm insha’Allah. Together, try to watch streaming Jummah services on TV/Computer when possible.
See if there are Islamic groups online for Muslims struggling with feelings of depression, isolation, etc. This will be upbuilding and provide spiritual support and insha’Allah lessen the feelings of isolation.
Sister, if his feelings and behaviors continue despite your efforts to find him his own space in the house, speaking with him and showing support, and drawing closer to Allah, please do look into Telecounseling to assist your husband in regards to his feelings.
Tele-counseling is available online as there is a stay in shelter order right now. Along with other medical services that have gone online, counseling also is available online.
Look into your options regarding this and speak to your husband about it. Your husband may find this very helpful in dealing with his emotions. Please do make duaa to Allah to help your husband cope, to grant mercy and ease. We wish you the best.
Disclaimer: The conceptualization and recommendations stated in this response are very general and purely based on the limited information provided in the question. In no event shall AboutIslam, its counselors or employees be held liable for any damages that may arise from your decision in the use of our services.