Please, what can I do with a wife who believes her husband must share with her the household chores? She also disrespects her husband and his family.
In this counseling answer:
• We must look to our beloved prophet (PHUB) and how he lived his life in regard to marital relationships in the households with his wives.
• Perhaps it may be best to speak with the wife and find out why she’s being disrespectful. There may be other factors involved.
• Speak to her in a kind way.
As salamu Alaykum,
Thank you for writing to us. I am not a scholar; therefore, I will only advice you from a counselor’s point of view. For Islamic advice, please submit your question to Ask the Scholar.
As I understand your situation, one of the issues you are wondering about concerns “what to do or what is the solution” to the situation wherein a wife wants her husband to help her with domestic work in the house. In this situation, we must look to our beloved prophet (PHUB) and how he lived his life in regard to marital relationships in the households with his wives.
Helping with Chores: Our Beloved Prophet (PBUH) as an Example
The prophet Muhammad (PBUH) did indeed partake in the domestic works in the house. He helped out around the house and he even sewed his own socks. Therefore, based on our beloved prophet’s (PHUH), this it is sunnah. While it is not commanded that a husband do this, there are many blessings in it for a husband.
Disrespect in Islam
In regard to a wife disrespecting a husband and his family, that is a haram situation. While you did not specify in which ways disrespect was being shown, it must be dealt with. In Islam, we are to respect one another, especially husbands and wives and family members. Kindness, love, mercy, and respect are the foundations of Islamic relationships between family members.
Dealing with Disrespectful Ways
I would kindly suggest that the wife be counseled on her behavior regarding respect or lack of it. Perhaps it may be best to speak with the wife and find out why she’s being disrespectful. There may be other factors involved, such as she may feel disrespected herself, she may feel as if she is not liked or accepted, or there may be other reasons why she is acting this way. While there may be a reason that she is disrespectful, that is not an excuse to be disrespectful.
Speaking with Wife
I kindly suggest insha’Allah that the husband speak with his wife in a kind way to find out what the problem is. Disrespect may come as anger from a place of deep hurt and feelings of rejection or may come from a place of feeling higher or better than someone else. In both instances it is wrong. Finding out where it is coming from will assist in knowing how to address it.
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From this perspective, the husband may be able to help resolve any misunderstandings, hurt feelings, or fears the wife may be experiencing. He will also be able to at that point, help her to understand that her ways are disrespectful and need to stop. Insha’Allah by having a conversation which is conducive to resolution using the Qur’an for guidance, the disrespect will be resolved.
We wish you the best you are in my prayers.
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