We are on Edge Due to MIL Interference!

03 August, 2020
Q I have been married for almost 2 years now. I have been cooperating with my husband and my in-laws as much as I could bear. My mother-In-law constantly goes into my bedroom and I have asked her as well as my husband multiple times to please not go in anymore, but she refuses to listen.

I told her one day not to go as she lives in our house and she still goes in and looks through my wallet and many other things. My husband and I have been arguing almost nonstop about his mother and how it doesn’t feel like my home or that I have no privacy either and he never tried to solve it.

When our daughter was 3 months he said to me that he was no longer attracted to me or loved me, as well as threatening me with divorce. Now I am fed up after seeing his mother who yelled at me and said she wouldn’t even spit in our room multiple times a day and still not listen to my one boundary.

My husband constantly takes out his parents’ frustration out on me and my parents’ frustration on him since he says I’m not allowed to create boundaries with his parents anymore.

I am recently at my parents home and left with my daughter and he says that he would rather get divorced then let his parents live with another one of his brothers or his sisters.

Answer


In this counseling answer:

While you are contemplating and healing, please do draw closer to Allah through prayer, duaa, dhkzir, and other acts of worship. In sha Allah try to attend the Masjid as often as possible for prayer.

If there are social activities that the sisters are doing at the Masjid or getting together for dinner, tea, exercising, whatever, please do join them.

By having more of a balance in your life and enjoying the company of your sisters will prove to be uplifting Insha’Allah.

Sister please do remain at your mom’s for as long as you are able. 

Ask your husband to participate in marriage counseling. Inform him you would like to save the marriage however as a woman, wife, and Muslim you do deserve to be treated with respect and kindness.

As he did indicate he would divorce you before he sent his mother to live with his siblings, sadly this may be an indicator that he may be unwilling to try to save the marriage.

Please put your trust in Allah as you move forward trying to save your marriage as well as standing up for your rights as a Muslim wife.


as salamu alaykum,

Shokran for writing to us. Sister I am so sorry to hear about what is going on not only in the household but with your marriage. I can imagine that you feel very alone, hurt, and perplexed by the whole situation.

When one gets married they generally know that there will be challenges. Every marriage has challenges. However, there can be joy in challenges as spouses work together as one to overcome the tests and trials. In this case your husband appears not willing to resolve this situation.

Problems with Mother in Law

In this situation your mother-in-law lives with you, your husband and child. She is very intrusive and vile towards you. The one thing that you did ask of her (your husband is aware), is that she respects your bedroom and does not go in there. However, neither her nor your husband will reinforce this.

Sister when you get married you do have the right to your privacy in your own bedroom. The fact that your mother-in-law comes and goes in your bedroom as she pleases just for the fact of snooping around, going through your wallet, going through your private things, indicates it may be done out of malice.

It’s not like she is going into your room to help put away laundry or some other kind act. It is possible that she is acting territorial and is letting you know through her actions that she still runs and controls everything. 

We are on Edge Due to MIL Interference! - About Islam

No Support from Husband

Sadly, your husband sticks up for your mother-in-law and he even told you that he is no longer attracted to you nor does he love you. I can imagine this was devastating to hear, how cruel. Whether he meant it or not is not known.

However, if this is the truth this is possibly one of the reasons he does not stand up for you as he should as a Muslim husband. Quite honestly he and his family, specifically his Mom, sound very disrespectful and insensitive to your needs. I can imagine this is  very hurtful sister. 


Check out this counseling video:


Currently at Back at Mothers Home

You are currently with your child at your mom’s home. Sister based on not only what was going on in the home with your mother-in-law, but more importantly what your husband has stated about not loving you, perhaps this is the best place for you right now. At least when you are at your mom’s you will have some semblance of comfort, love, privacy, and support. 

Taking the Time to Heal

In sha Allah take this time sister to heal from what you have been going through with your husband and mother-in-law. Try to eat good healthy foods, get good sleep, start an exercise routine, get out in nature, and try to enjoy special times with family and your Muslim sisters.

Increase your closeness with Allah by doing dhikr, praying, reading Qur’an, and attending the Masjid. You may be amazed at how much better you begin to feel! 

Revisiting Marriage Expectations

Sister, perhaps it is time to think about what it is you truly want from a marriage and a husband. Examine your needs and expectations and you ask yourself are you getting it. Look also at the principles of marriage and family and ask yourself “are you giving as much as you can?”

If you’re not getting your needs met and if the marriage is not based on Islamic principles and foundations, you may wish to explore other alternatives such as a longer separation until the issues are resolved. 

Speaking with Husband

You may wish to kindly ask your husband if he would be willing to attend marriage counseling in an attempt to save this marriage. In sha Allah he will agree. However, as he has already stated he would rather divorce you then have his mother go live with one of his siblings, perhaps he is not as committed.

Perhaps this was only said out of anger. If he truly means this then perhaps it is something the two of you may wish to discuss with an Imam.

Perhaps there are compromises that can be made in regards to the living situation, boundaries, and family interactions. It may be that your mother in law and you could sit down and talk to work out your differences. Perhaps she is feeling misplaced and discarded and thus is acting in a hostile way.

Allah Loves You

Sister, never forget that Allah loves you. Allah will often let us go through tests and trials to either open our eyes to situations so that we may learn more, or to strengthen us. These tests and trials also help us to draw closer to Allah. 

Conclusion

While you are contemplating and healing, please do draw closer to Allah through prayer, duaa, dhkzir, and other acts of worship. In sha Allah try to attend the Masjid as often as possible for prayer.

If there are social activities that the sisters are doing at the Masjid or getting together for dinner, tea, exercising, whatever, please do join them. By having more of a balance in your life and enjoying the company of your sisters will prove to be uplifting Insha’Allah.

Sister please do remain at your mom’s for as long as you are able.  Ask your husband to participate in marriage counseling.

Inform him you would like to save the marriage however as a woman, wife, and Muslim you do deserve to be treated with respect and kindness. As he did indicate he would divorce you before he sent his mother to live with his siblings, sadly this may be an indicator that he may be unwilling to try to save the marriage.

Please put your trust in Allah as you move forward trying to save your marriage as well as standing up for your rights as a Muslim wife. Please note that while this is hurtful and it may seem impossible to resolve, it will get resolved in sha Allah in one way or another. We wish you the best.

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.

Read more:

https://aboutislam.net/counseling/ask-the-counselor/in-laws/im-started-hate-mother-law/

https://aboutislam.net/counseling/ask-about-parenting/family-ties/controlling-mother-in-law-how-shall-i-deal-with-her/

https://aboutislam.net/shariah/refine-your-heart/tips-and-steps/dealing-with-difficult-mother-in-law/

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.