Husband Cheated With Ex-Wife I Feel Disgusted!

22 November, 2020
Q I met my husband at university. At the time he had a wife who he claimed he was separated from and they also have a child together. I later found out that he lied and was actually married and living with his wife and their child. When his wife found out about his affair, they got divorced.

He then emotionally and physically abused me, blackmailed me to marry him. When I got married to him in 2015, my family disowned me. Throughout our marriage my husband had been physically abusing me and had been having an affair with his divorced ex wife.

This was then exposed to me by his ex wife when she decided to move on with her life with someone else and stopped my husband from seeing their child.

I got pregnant and found out by his ex wife that he had been cheating on me. She sent me their exchanged messages and images. Ever since the truth came about his adultery, my feelings towards my husband have changed. I feel disgusted when he tries to initiate sex.

I find myself thinking of ways to leave but do not have the courage to do so because we have a child together and I get worried that I might not be able to financially support myself and my child without living at my in-laws home.

Answer


In this counseling session:

  • Determine where you will move to as you cannot stay in their house. Consider mending things with family or looking for a local roommate to share expenses. 
  • Look into social service programs to hep you financially. 
  • Make goals to improve your own income.
  • Talk to a legal representative about how visitation will work with the child. That same representation can advise you on legal procedures for divorce. 
  • Identify positive coping skills to help you cope as you heal.

Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatuulahi wa barakatu. 

Thank you for taking the time to write in and trust us with your concerns. 

It is my understanding your husband has a history of adultery, has repeatedly had affairs whether with you while previously married or against you with his ex-wife. I also understand he has been abusive to you emotionally and physically in addition to his adultery.

Sister, let us be really honest with now. You two are not the only women and I think you know this deep down, you just do not have evidence. You also mention he does not support you. He has proven he cannot be loyal and is a liar, he also has proven he is an abuser who does not fulfill your rights.

Husband Cheated With Ex-Wife I Feel Disgusted! - About Islam

You stated, “I feel disgusted when he tries to initiate sex” and you are completely justified in that. You met a man you thought was single, you obviously forgave his deception and gave him a chance then he turned around and cheated on you. So you are not in the wrong for feeling how you do about him. 

How to Leave

Sister, you mentioned that you are already thinking about how to leave but lack the courage to do so due to finances and having a child together. This is a common issue for people stuck in unhappy marriages, financial concerns are always at the forefront and of course children present a variable that must be addressed.

Let us break down how to solve these concerns so you can get away from this man and go after a happier life. 

Children

Sister, you can work out a legal agreement for him to have visitation with the children and the Grandparents to be able to see the child. You mentioned he is abusive to you, if there is any concern of him being abusive to the children please let social services know this.

As you live with your in-laws, I assume the child has a relationship with their Grandparents, so it is best to keep this for the sake of the child. You can work out legal arrangements to ensure the child still sees all of their family and it is amicable and peaceful between all of you. It is important no one fights in front of the kid or starts drama around the child over visitation, that only huts the child. 

Finances

I know it is a scary thought to consider moving out, but the reality is you need to. Some ideas to consider are looking for local women who need a roommate. You will save a lot of money on expenses if you are sharing living expenses. 

Another idea is to look for family that would let you stay with them temporarily until you are able to get your own place independently. Such as your parents, an Aunt/Uncle or cousin that can help you.

I understand you said that your family disowned you but consider reaching out to them and telling them you made a mistake and need help. Inshallah they will understand and want to help, especially as a child is involved. 


Check out this counseling video:


You can also put up a notice at the mosque that you are looking for a female to move in with temporarily and note that you have a child. You may find a Sister who has a room available to rent in her apartment. 

Additionally, contact your local social services and investigate what resources they have available for you. They may be able to help you with housing, grocery expenses, daycare expenses when you are working, and other financial assistance programs. 

Please investigate obtaining employment as this swill be a necessity. If you already work, then consider speaking with your employer about opportunities for advancement. Make goals to improve your career and lay out what you need to do in order to advance yourself inshallah.

These can short term as well as long term goals. For example, you may need to do a seminar to apply for a higher position and this is a short term goal but for a management role you may need schooling and make a goal to take classes. Look at your opportunities, pray istikhara and go after what feels right. 

Coping Skills

As you move forward in whaling from this marriage, I encourage you to identify coping skills to employ during the difficult moments. Coping skills are individualized to the person, what works for one does not for another. For example, petting my cats and bubble baths are two of my coping skills during difficult days but some people do not like animals or have no interest in bubble baths. 

Here are a few examples of coping skills, do not limit yourself to just these. 

  • Nature walks
  • Dhikr
  • Quran recitation
  • Exercise
  • Dancing
  • Singing along to favorite music
  • Drawing, painting, or other creative arts
  • Walking a dog in the park
  • Getting a manicure and pedicure
  • Cooking a favorite recipe
  • Sewing/Crochet
  • Reading a good book

Final Thoughts

Here is a summary of your next steps moving forward Sister. 

  • Determine where you will move to as you cannot stay in their house. Consider mending things with family or looking for a local roommate to share expenses. 
  • Look into social service programs to hep you financially. 
  • Make goals to improve your own income.
  • Talk to a legal representative about how visitation will work with the child. That same representation can advise you on legal procedures for divorce. 
  • Identify positive coping skills to help you cope as you heal

I know this is a hard situation and you are hurting, but inshallah you can find resolution and move forward with a happier life. May Allah (swt) heal your heart and guide your next steps, ameen. 

Salam,

***

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 are liable for any damages that may arise from your decision in the use of our services.

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About Monique Hassan
Monique Hassan graduated with honors in 2012 with her BSc in Psychology and a minor in Biology and is certified in Crisis Prevention and Intervention. She has years of professional as well as personal experience with trauma, relationship struggles, substance abuse, identifying coping skills, conflict resolution, community outreach, and overall mental health concerns. She is a professional writer specialized in Islamic Psychology and Behavioral Health. She is also a revert who took her shahada in 2015, Alhamdulillah. You can contact Sister Monique Hassan via her website "MoniqueHassan.com"