As-Salaam ‘Aleikom sister,
Thank for writing to us about your concern, I will try my best to advice you, in sha’Allah.
Allah (swt) has made this beautiful bond marriage which is all about compassion, love and respect for each other. Yes, the wife is ordered to obey her husband, but then the husband has some duties he is obliged to fulfill, too. Both husband and wife are supposed to complete each other.
“You who believe! It is not lawful for you to inherit women by force. Nor may you treat them harshly so that you can make off with part of what you have given them, unless they commit an act of flagrant indecency. Live together with them correctly and courteously. If you dislike them, it may well be that you dislike something in which Allah (swt) has placed a lot of good.” (4:19)
Men are commanded not to treat their wives harshly. Both should live in harmony and show each other affection and mercy. Regardless of whether Islam has made the husband the head of the household, Muslims are not supposed to be dictators and tyrants. We are taught to treat our wives well.
“And of His signs is that He created for you from yourselves mates that you may find tranquillity in them; and He placed between you affection and mercy. Indeed in that are signs for a people who give thought.” (30:21)
You must be feeling frustrated and confused with the situation you are in. Dealing with a controlling person is never easy, especially when that person is someone you care about. You must understand that being hot tempered and stone headed does make the situation even harder. Yes, he has to change, but try to change yourself as well.
What it seems to me is that your relationship is lacking of communication. Communication in a relationship is extremely important because it acts as the judge, jury and executioner who has the final say on whether your relationship lives or dies. Being able to communicate effectively can also stop needless arguments which occur regularly in your relationships.
It is important that you sit down with your husband and talk to him about the things that are bothering you so much. Speak in a manner that does not offend and disrespect him. If you want to solve the problem, then it is important that you speak in a way that gets through to him. He is your husband, and I am sure he will understand if you speak in a calm and respectful manner. You both have a beautiful daughter, ma sha’ Allah, and she is a good strength for you already. Tell him that you want him to help you with your daughter and be there more as she loves him.
Here are a few helpful tips on how to deal with a controlling spouse:
Start by helping yourself first
You mentioned that you are hot tempered, and it doesn’t make things any easier. Try to control your anger. Anger is one of the evil whispers of the Devil, which leads to so many evils and tragedies. That is why Islam has spoken a good deal about anger which we should take seriously.
„And if there comes to you from Satan an evil suggestion, then seek refuge in Allah . Indeed, He is the Hearing, the Knowing.” (41:36)
Everyone has a physical reaction to anger. Be aware of what your body is telling you, and take steps to calm yourself down. Recognize your anger signs and try to breathe properly and drink cold water. Try shifting focus to something else. Counting to 10 gives you time to cool down, so you can think more clearly and overcome the impulse to lash out. If you find it hard to control your anger, then it would be a good idea to seek some professional help.
Remember, you can’t change somebody else no matter how hard you try if they are not willing to change. That’s why you could always start by changing yourself first and the rest will come naturally, in sha’Allah.
Talk to him, as I mentioned earlier; communication is important. Ask whether he realises that what he is doing is inappropriate and that it might even damage your relationship in the long term. Hopefully, you can start working together in order to solve this issue.
Show him how his actions hurt you
Once you’ve started to work on solving this issue, be honest with your significant other and tell him how his actions are hurting you. Let them know that his behavior makes you feel uncomfortable, sad, and even lonely sometimes and that he is diminishing your self-confidence and your self-esteem. Tell him that you would like to behave more as a happy couple and not like two people who constantly have something to argue about.
Try to stay calm when you are dealing with a controlling spouse because I’m sure you wouldn’t want to make things escalate. You might end up saying mean things to each other, things that aren’t even true and that will only hurt you and your relationship. It may be a bit difficult at first to remain calm during your arguments, but in time, with a lot of practice, you will learn how to control your temper.
Find out his actions for acting in such a way
Before accusing your spouse of being manipulative and controlling, try to find out his reasons for acting in such a way. You will see that most times, he has deeper issues, things that he didn’t even realize they have.
You’ll be able to overcome all the difficulties in your relationship if you work together and if you have patience, In sha’Allah.
So, to make your marriage work better, what you need to focus on are: improving the communication between you and your husband, speaking softly with him, trying to control your anger and stubbornness. Be patient, talk to him about his poor behavior in a calm and respectful manner. I am sure if you both work together on the problems, then things will soon get better.
May Allah (swt) ease your problem and increase the love between you and your husband.
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