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My Husband Loves His Other Wife More Than Me

11 October, 2023
Q As Salamu Alaykum.

I am a Muslim woman from the Middle-East. I am in my early thirties. I have a co-wife whom I try to be friends with, but she does not really welcome the idea of a friendship. She lives in a different country and only comes for a visit although she sometimes stays for several months. Whenever she is around, she stays alone by herself. When she is not here I send her messages, but she seldom replies me.

The other problem is the way my husband treats me whenever she is around. He forsakes my room almost completely to stay with her. He doesn't ask to be intimate with me, and even when I ask, he gives me excuses and begs me to give him time with his wife. At other times, he would go to her even when I insist that it’s my night.

This has really affected our intimate relationship because even when she is absent, he doesn’t want to sleep with me. He seldom asks for sex. He would rather call her or text her to have his desires fulfilled. I love my husband dearly, but I see us drifting apart daily. I have talked to him on a number of occasions, but he refused to admit there was anything wrong, although he still loves me and treats me well. Please, I need your help.


In this counseling answer:

• Patience is the key to improve the relationship between yourself and the other wife.

• Try communicating with your husband in a manner where you are not blaming him or putting him on the spot.

As-Salamu ‘Aleikum,

We are glad that you reached out to us with your problems. We will try our best to help you.

Firstly, it is not easy for a woman to share her husband. Maybe the other wife does not want to talk to you because she finds it difficult to accept that you are her husband’s other wife. Are you your husband’s first or second wife? The answer to this question can have different effects on the dynamics of the relationship for all three members.

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Be Patient

Patience is the key to improve the relationship between yourself and the other wife. You must have a big heart to show that you are opening your arms for friendship with her. But give her some time. Maybe it is harder for her to be with you at this time. She will talk to you when she is more comfortable with the whole situation, so it’s best not to force the friendship. But being able to show her kindness and understanding her better will go a long way in developing your relationship. This may, in turn, lead you to receive more respect from both your husband and the other wife.

Flirt with Your Husband

Your husband, on the other hand, does not do the right that he spends less time with you in the bedroom even when his other wife is away. Intimacy is a very important part of marriage. The bond between two people can be truly expressed and strengthen their marriage. It is, therefore, important that your husband divides his time equally for you both.

You must look after yourself and dress up in a way that he likes. Only by getting his attention you can get him near you. Look after your appearance; dress up well, smell good, and make him smile. Allah (swt) has created us as sexual beings. Flirt with your husband in a playful and non-demanding way. Be in a jolly mood with him; maybe this way he will get attracted to you and want sex. Remember, men are more visually aroused than a woman, and the affection starts outside the bedroom first. Try building it up.

It must be really hard for you to not feel that your husband wants you. We have empathy for you. Often, when there is a lack of sexual activity in a marriage, there is a communication problem that needs to be resolved.

Check out this counseling video:

Communicate Effectively

You mentioned that you have asked your husband about this matter numerous times. Instead of directly questioning him for his intimacy with you, try communicating in a manner where you are not blaming him or putting him on the spot. Constantly getting blamed is still an inappropriate and non-productive form of communication between lovers, friends, or family members.

There are some forms of communication in relationships that can actually promote growing and healing. The use of “I” statements that reflect your feelings (“I feel hurt or sad when you do this”), rather than “you” blaming statements like “you always do that” are more likely to create emotions that bring you both together rather than further apart.

You should, of course, talk to him, and it is the right thing to do when he does not prioritize you sexually. But don’t put him in a situation where he feels too defensive and is unable to communicate properly with you. If he loves you and respects you, he will surely try to understand your feelings and give you time.

Blaming reduces intimacy. It’s obviously difficult to get close to someone or to maintain a close relationship when they have their arm outstretched with an accusing finger. In contrast to the road of self-blaming and low self-esteem, the act of blaming may also result in defensive behavior and bitter feelings from the blame.

Co-wives Must Be Treated Equally

Allah (swt) says in the Qur’an:

“And you will never be able to be equal [in feeling] between wives, even if you should strive [to do so]. So do not incline completely [toward one] and leave another hanging. And if you amend [your affairs] and fear Allah – then indeed, Allah is ever Forgiving and Merciful.” (Qur’an 4:129) 

This indicates that it is obligatory to treat co-wives fairly and equally and that it is haraam for the husband to spend more time with one of them in a way that will hurt the other.

The man must divide his time, night and day, among his wives and must divide it equally, and that he is not allowed to be unfair in that.

Islam permits the man to marry more than one wife as long as he is able to provide for them and be just amongst them. Allah (swt) says (which means):

“And if you fear that you will not deal justly with the orphan girls, then marry those that please you of [other] women, two or three or four. But if you fear that you will not be just, then [marry only] one or those your right hand possesses. That is more suitable that you may not incline [to injustice].” (Qur’an 4:3)

So, if your husband does not treat you equally and fairly, then he will be punished for that.

 Be patient and make du’aa’ to Allah (swt) that He (swt) puts more love and desire for you in your husband’s heart. Du’aa’ is a powerful tool. In sha’ Allah, your relationship with your husband will improve.

May Allah (swt) ease your problem, Ameen.


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.