Husband Flirts with Other Women: What to Do?

03 October, 2017
Q Salam 'Aleikom. I am so much worried about my husband. This is our 4th year of marriage, and my husband is addicted to talking and flirting with other girls on the phone. I don’t know how to deal with it. He is a good Muslim, husband, and father otherwise who prays 5 times a day, but this issue has been ruining our marriage. I feel I am less than others; I am going into depression day by a day. My self-respect and confidence are at an all-time low. Please guide me out from this. Due to this issue, I am unable to pay attention to my kids or home stuff.


In this counseling answer:

“His flirting and talking to other women is in no way a reflection on you, your worth, your beauty, nor your piety and worth as a wife. Usually, married men who flirt and talk to women are insecure about themselves. Usually, they have low self-esteem as men.”

As-Salamu ‘Alaikum sister,

Thank you for writing to us with your most important concerns. I am sorry to hear of your problems with your husband, dear sister. Sadly, it is a problem that is becoming more common.

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I am not sure if you have approached him yet on this issue, but if you have not, in sha’ Allah chose a time when things are calm at home and explain to him how it makes you feel when he talks and flirts with other women on the phone. In fact, you may want to make a list in sha’ Allah of how you feel before you approach him so that you can relate your feelings to him in a comprehensive way.

I would kindly suggest that when you talk to him about how you feel, talk to him in a way which will not put him on the defensive. Start out by telling him what a good husband and father he is as well as mentioning his good points as a Muslim and a man. In this way, he may be open to hearing how you feel rather than responding negatively from his sense of ego.

According to AboutIslam scholar: “If we are to assess this situation from the perspective of Islamic law and traditional Muslim custom, it is inappropriate to have any friends, private or separate emotional spaces with the opposite gender.” With this said sister, it is haram for him to be engaging in private conversations with women and especially flirting with them. While in today’s world many do receive or make occasional phone calls to the opposite sex to discuss a pressing business matter, it is strictly related to business. In your case, he is engaging in flirting and haram behaviors. You stated he has been addicted to this behavior sister. If he truly does have an addiction, he will need to be able to admit this addiction and get professional help.

Lastly dear sister, his flirting and talking to other women is in no way a reflection on you, your worth, your beauty, nor your piety and worth as a wife. Usually, married men who flirt and talk to women are insecure about themselves. Usually, they have low self-esteem as men. It is not about you dear sister; it is about his own insecurities as a man. If he refuses to listen to you, sister or refuses to change, I would then suggest that you get counseling from a therapist in your area to address your depression and perhaps look at your options.

In the meantime, please be gentle with yourself, join a gym for exercise as working out does relieve stress and boost your “happy hormones” thereby decreasing depression. Also, engage in a sisters group at the mosque for socialization and enjoyment, and try to do good things for yourself during this trying time. Stay close to Allah (swt), pray, make du’aa’ that Allah (swt) guides your husband down the right path regarding his behaviors, and read Qur’an for comfort.

Please let us know how you are doing.


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.

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About Aisha Mohammad
Aisha received her PhD in psychology in 2000 and an MS in public health in 2009. Aisha worked as a Counselor/Psychologist for 12 years for Geneva B. Scruggs Community Health Care Center in New York. Aisha specializes in trauma, depression, anxiety, substance abuse, marriage/relationships issues, as well as community-cultural dynamics. She is certified in Restorative Justice/ Healing Circles, Conflict Resolution, Mediation, and is also a certified Life Coach. Aisha works at a Family Resource Center, and has a part-time practice in which she integrates healing and spirituality using a holistic approach. Aisha plans to open a holistic care counseling center for Muslims and others in the New York area in the future, in sha' Allah. Aisha is also a part of several organizations that advocate for social & food justice. In her spare time she enjoys her family, martial arts classes, Islamic studies as well as working on her book and spoken word projects.