We have problems, and now he wants to see other women and explore what kind of woman he wants beside him. So he talks to other women to see, and make sure I am the right one for him…This is insane for me! It is like I am on a shortlist for him! I feel I am just an object to him…
I am good for cooking and cleaning and being in the bed, but nothing else. I feel desperate.
In this counseling answer:
• Speaking with other women randomly without a third party present for the purposes of marriage is not the halal way of seeking a wife.
• I would kindly suggest that you asked him if he would like to go for marriage counseling.
• You may also wish to speak to your imam at your Masjid with him, to clarify that you do indeed want to save the marriage and you do desire counseling.
• If your husband refuses to rectify the situation, you do have the option of divorce.
As Salamu Alaykum dear sister,
I’m so sorry to hear that you found out that your husband talks to other women. I can imagine you feel very hurt, betrayed, as well as shocked.
Husband Talks to Other Women
You stated when you confronted your husband, he said it was okay if he talked with other women as he was allowed to marry more than one woman. Your husband is forgetting, however, that while indeed he is allowed to marry more than one woman, his approach has to be halal and follow Islamic guidelines.
Seeking Second Wife: Halal or Haram
Speaking with other women randomly without a third party present for the purposes of marriage is not the halal way of seeking a wife. In fact, depending on the content of the conversation it could be considered haram. One cannot “try out” different women for purposes of a future marriage.
Sister, I’m not sure how long you have been married, or what your marriage is like right now. You did mention that you have marital problems however you are not specific as to what they were. You did say that because of this, he wants to see other women and explore what kind of woman he wants beside him.
Unfortunately, your husband is very misguided. He is going about seeking a second wife in the wrong way. Additionally, out of love and respect for you, he should have brought this to you first and discuss it with you. As he is not moving in the right direction in regard to taking a second wife, and as you are not willing to accept this, perhaps you need to speak with him about options.
Options and Considerations
First of all, what he is doing is haram. In Islam, a man cannot just talk with other women and explore other women to see what he wants. This is not a meat market. There are Islamic ways to go about doing things and he is not following these Islamic guidelines or principles set forth.
Insha’Allah, inform him he needs to stop speaking with other women immediately. It is a violation and a possible sin. I would kindly suggest that you asked him if he would like to go for marriage counseling. Perhaps if the two of you iron out the problems that you have within your marriage, he will stop this behavior, which is so hurtful to you and also is haram.
If your husband agrees to marriage counseling insha’Allah, this will help. If he does not agree to marriage counseling and he desires to continue speaking and exploring with other women, then you need to make a decision. The decision would be to continue living with him with this disrespectful, sinful behavior, or contemplate a divorce.
Check out this counseling video:
Staying or Seeking Divorce
In most instances, we seek to save our marriage first. Thus, I encourage you to try to engage him in marital counseling. You may also wish to speak to your imam at your Masjid with him, to clarify that you do indeed want to save the marriage and you do desire counseling. You may also wish to clarify with the Imam and him, the appropriate ways of going about seeking a second wife. I understand you do not want this; however, it is indeed important that he is confronted and corrected regarding his behaviors, from an Islamic perspective.
Sister, my heart goes out to you as this is a difficult situation. However, you do have choices. Your happiness and wellbeing are important. You are important, valued and loved by Allah swt. Allah does not want you to be hurt. As stated above, if your husband refuses to rectify the situation, you do have the option of divorce.
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.