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How Can I Handle My Narcissist Husband?

Questioner

Anonymous

Reply Date

Jul 18, 2019

Question

How do I handle a narcissist husband who never takes the blame for his mistakes and never feels sorry when he hurts me intentionally or unintentionally? I have tried to use Islam to correct him. He prays and looks into halal haram and is very genuine when it comes to money.

However, everything boils down to him and he is very clear he will not take a bullet to save his daughter (but he is a very good father). I want to live with him because of my daughter, but his ego is so difficult to handle. I can't even talk in an argument and when I cry he is not even bothered. So, I try not to cry in front of him but only in front of Allah. Please help.

Counselor

Answer


How Can I Handle My Narcissist Husband?

In this counseling answer:

• I would kindly suggest that he gets treatment in order to insha’Allah improve your marriage as well as help him to develop empathy towards others. NPD is hard to treat.

• If he refuses to get counseling, I kindly suggest dear sister that you get counseling to help with the stress and emotions that you go through because of him.

• Support groups can provide a safe platform to learn, grow and share experiences.

• Make duaa to Allah for healing, ease and mercy sister.


As Salam Alaykum sister,

Thank you for writing to us. I’m so sorry to hear about the difficulties you are experiencing with your husband.  If he is, indeed, diagnosed by a professional with NPD, it can be a very challenging marriage.

As a spouse, you will be without many emotional supports which marriage is supposed to provide. It can be very difficult as you know. On the other hand, you described him as a good father; he prays and is willing to examine the differences between halal and haram. He also is “genuine” when it comes to money. So, he does have a lot of good points going for him. Nonetheless, the lack of empathy, the need to be the center of attention as well as other features may be overbearing.

How Can I Handle My Narcissist Husband? - About Islam

I am wondering if your husband is in counseling, sister? If he isn’t, I would kindly suggest that he gets treatment in order to insha’Allah improve your marriage as well as help him to develop empathy towards others. NPD is hard to treat. However according to Psychology Today, “mentalization-based therapy, transference-focused psychotherapy, and schema-focused psychotherapy have all been suggested as effective ways of treating narcissistic personality disorder.”

If he refuses to get counseling, I kindly suggest dear sister that you get counseling to help with the stress and emotions that you go through because of him. Counseling can be a good platform to vent, get feedback, learn helpful coping skills and techniques. Increase your social interactions. If you know your husband has NPD, look to others who are close such as family or a close friend, to try to fill that void. While it is not the same support and empathy you would get from a spouse, it is a support.

Understand that his limitations do not have to become yours. As you decided to stay in the marriage, there are ways to work around his disorder as long as it is not severe. Psychology Today offers some great tips.

You may also wish to join a support group for spouses of people with NPD. You will be able to share your thoughts and obstacles with others who are in similar situations. Support groups can provide a safe platform to learn, grow and share experiences. By sharing with others who are going through the same situations as you, you can be confident that insha’Allah they understand what you are feeling and going through. Insha’Allah this may also be of benefit.


Check out this counseling video:


Lastly, make duaa to Allah for healing, ease and mercy sister. Try to do Islamic things together as a family such as praying together, reading Qur’an, going to the Masjid and attending Islamic events and functions. The closer we are to Allah as individuals and as a family unit, the more tolerable things become.

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.

Read more:

Psychology of Narcissism

I’m Narcissistic; How Can I Love Allah?

About Narcissistic Personality Disorder & Ego

 




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 poetry projects.

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