Ask about Parenting- Counseling Session

Salamu alaykum dear brothers and sisters,

We would like to thank you for joining us in this Counseling Session.

We would like also to thank our counselor, sister Hannah for answering the questions.

Answers will be online very soon

Feel free to send your questions to [email protected]

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Q:

Please help me with choosing my baby boy’s name. I want to name him with a good Islamic name.  Any advice?

Note: I have chosen some names, can you please tell me which one is good meaning in Islamic point of view. Thanks a lot.

 1) Shaddad

2) Shuhair

3) Shareek

4) Shujaa

A:

As-salamu alaikum wa rahmatulahi wa barakatuh,

Masha Allah, tabarakAllah, congratulations on your pregnancy/new baby. What a blessing Allah has bestowed on you. May Allah make your son the coolness of your eyes and a source of joy, happiness and reward in this life and the next.

Alhamdulilah that you have understood the importance in giving your son a good name. This is his right over you as your son.

I’m am not a scholar so the first thing I would do is to advice you to seek scholarly support in determining the meanings of these names.

This could be done by simply consulting with your local imam who will be able to advise you in this. I do know that there hadith that recommend certain names in particular such as Abdul-Rahman and Abdullah, as well as names that are preceded by the word Abd- followed by one of Allah’s beautiful names essentially meaning ‘slave of Allah’, such as Abdul-Rahim.

The most important thing is that he has a good name that doesn’t mean anything haram. If you speak to your local imam and confirm that none of your chosen names are haram and they have good meanings then then you can take a few steps to pick the one that will be best for your son.

Having considered the different meanings, is there anyone in particular that stands out as uniquely special to you? Or your family? Or even if there are any that are obviously a bad match then you can eliminate it entirely.

Once you have considered these things and narrowed it down to those that you would be comfortable calling your son, take the matter more widely. Of course your husband should have a say in the matter too as well as perhaps extended family, grandparents and so on. See what the thought so other loved ones are. There may be 1 name in particular that everyone likes.

You might also consider other things such as how easy the name is to say or how common the name is, if you have anyone else in the family with the same name. Some people prefer to pick a name that is very easy to read and say and that would result in mispronunciation by others such as teachers in the future.

Other however, are not bothered by this and prefer more unusual names. Others prefer something more common.

Some people find it more special to keep a name within the family and its important the child bears a name of a past relative. Others prefer it is a new and unique name to the family. These are all factors that you might also like to consider depending on your own preferences.

May Allah guide you to pick the best name for your son and may He grant a pious child that will be an upstanding pillar of the community bring you joy in this life and the next.


Q:

My son is 5 and he has issues with his F sound. It sounds like S sometimes. Like four sounds like sore. Not all his F’s come out that way.

He says friend not sriend, for example. Does he have a speech issue or is it a normal thing at his age to do this? I have found some great help on the internet on things we can do to help with speech, songs to sing, things to practice saying, etc., but was curious if anyone else’s kids did this.

A:

As-salamu alaikum wa rahmatulahi wa barakatuh,

It is not unusual for children at this age to have some problems with speech still so it may not be a matter to worry about. However, it is also normal to feel a bit concerned about it at least as a parent for fear that there is perhaps something more sinister going on.

Sometimes it is the case that the speech impediment has been quite minor and it only when they are due to start school, around the age of 5 like your son, that suddenly any problems become more obvious, even the small ones.

Masha Allah, you’ve done the right thing by trying to find ways to help him with this issue. Most of the time this is all that is needed to support a child of this age overcoming a speech difficulty.

Just to be on the safe side however, I would also recommend getting some medical advice to investigate the matter further just to be sure that there is nothing else that could be causing these issues. If you take him to your family doctor they will be able to give him a check over and refer him to the necessary specialists.

On occasion, speech problems can be a result of a hearing problems. Since he is talking well otherwise and probably doesn’t show any obvious problems with his hearing it would be unlikely that anything is wrong, or if it is, then it would just require a minor procedure to fix his hearing.

Your doctor would refer you to an audiologist or Ear, nose and throat specialist to determine if this is the case. Likewise, there may be a structural abnormality in his mouth that makes it difficult for him to pronounce certain sounds. Again, this would be picked up by these specialists.

If all is clear in this department, then he would likely be referred to a speech therapist who will be able to support both him and you in providing activities, much like the ones you are probably doing, to correct any abnormalities in his speech.

One of the first things they tend to ask is if the child is exposed to or speaks in any other languages.

It wouldn’t be unusual for this to be a factor that impacts on the pronunciation of words as each language has different sounds that are unique to the language but when applied to another can make the words sounds a little unusual.

This may be the case. Otherwise, it may be that since it’s quite a minor thing that only affects particular words you haven’t been so conscious of it and he has gotten used to using different sounds without being corrected.

Now you realise which sounds he is struggling with, you can pay closer attention to this and be helping him to correct it.

May Allah bring you son and your family good health and may He make it easy for you to support your son and help him through his difficulties.


Q:

I have 2 children aged 10 and 13. They are good youngsters and outside they behave well, but at home they are constantly arguing and bickering with each other and there is always rivalry and quarrels.

I feel like I spend half my life disciplining one or the other. Is there anything I can do to help them get along and stop the conflicts?

Wa alaikum salaam wa rahmatulahi wa barakatuh,

This is a very common story for parents of children this age. In fact, it happens more that children this age fight than they don’t!

The unusual story would be to hear of 2 children that age who get on well. You are not alone. However, this does not take away the stress it brings to you as their parent. It’s not easy or fun to see your children that you love so dearly arguing and bickering.

The first thing you might do is just check that the reason for their arguing is not something serious that could have lasting impacts between them and as well as more widely to you and the family.

Siblings often get jealous of each other, but is there present something bigger than just your normal sibling rivalry.

Is there an ongoing underlying issue that has been causing the arguments for a long period of time? Or are they arguing over something new everytime? Something that doesn’t seem like that big a deal?

Finally, are their arguments those that lead to more serious physical altercations? If so then more serious intervention and discipline would be required.

From the way you have presented it, I don’t believe this is the case but in case it is, this is something that you would need to consider.

If it seems that the topic of their arguments is nothing more than the usual disputes that go on between children then you probably don’t have anything to worry about and they will grown out of it in time as they mature.

That doesn’t mean however that you should just sit back and allow them to fight. There are things that you can do to nurture good relations between them.

Encourage then to do things where they are working together towards the same end goal, things that require teamwork and working together rather than against each other. This might be in the form of some kind of recreational task, such as building something together.

As well as encouraging tasks that encourage them to work together, they also need their own independent responsibilities that do not rely on the other. Something that they can be accountable for individually and take pride in.

This could be something like household tasks. If they have their own responsibility then no one can get jealous of the other or fight about it as the responsibility is unique to each individual independent of one another.

This also give them the opportunity to get individual rewards and praise for their good deeds, not only from you, but from themselves as a sense of accomplishment. You might also apply this to extra curricular activities too by supporting them in individually enrolling in things they like to do for fun, such as sport.

This gives them a place to release any pent up energy so as not to use it all up on one another. This gives them a chance to develop their own personalities. The time away from each tiger, even though short can also be a way to encourage good relations when they are together.

As well as encouraging teamwork as well as independent activities as a means to encourage good relations between them you should also check yourself to be sure that you are also treating them equally to ensure it doesn’t come across like you are favoring one child over another. This alone can be a source of jealousy and dispute between siblings.

Just making sure that you show them both the same level of affection in terms of both material and emotional attention, as well as being fair and equal in the way you discipline them too.

In sha Allah their behaviour is just a result of their age and will be something that they will grow out of as they get older and they will eventually grow to become best friends that they can rely on over and above anyone else even.

May Allah guide you to support them and may He guide them on a path of righteousness. May He make them the coolness of your eyes in this life and the next.


Q:

I have two children. A daughter 6 years, and a baby son four months. Al-hamdu lillah, my daughter is very confident and has no problems getting on with anyone whether it’s a young toddler, children her own age or older, or adults.

 I don’t know if this is a result of home education. I went to school as a child and so did my husband and both of us were very shy (especially me around adults). However, despite the fact that my daughter is confident she has told us that she does feel lonely.

We’ve tried to address this by allowing her to mix with other children as much as possible when we visit other families at the weekend.

Also during the week we attend a mother and toddler group where she gets to play with other children of all ages. We’ll also try and attend events with other home ed families. What else can I do?

A:

As-salamu alaikum wa rahmatulahi wa barakatuh sister,

Alhamdulilah that your daughter seems to be thriving in her home Ed setting and you are clearly doing you best to ensure that she gets as much social interaction as possible with all sorts of other children in different environments. Unfortunately, she is still feeling very lonely despite your efforts to ensure this doesn’t happen.

At the age of 6 she is probably well aware of her likes and dislikes and confident enough to communicate her needs to you.

The best place to start in this scenario is to ask her directly what she wants. What would make her feel less lonely? As much as parents we like to think we know our children well and know what’s best for them, that is not always the case.

As you mentioned, you and you husband both went to school and you are both very shy. This shows a clear difference between the way you were raised and the type of personalities you both have.

As a result, your idea of what it is to not be lonely is probably quite different to what hers is. Talking to her directly will help you to develop an understanding of things from her perspective.

Perhaps she is not enjoying the things that you are doing to try and support her socialising? Or perhaps they are not the types of things to relieve her loneliness.

Perhaps it is that she is looking for a girl her age, or small group of girls her age that she can develop a more intimate and close connection with. Attending play groups and home Ed groups perhaps might not give her that level of daily and regular close connection.

If this is the case, then you might be able to facilitate this by maintaining friendships in an online space where she is given the opportunity to interact for a certain period of time with a close friend online, perhaps in an educational task.

Another thing it might be is that the types of activities whe is engaged in are not those that she enjoys so much? Or feels are not those of her choice.

Let her be open with you and let you know how she feels about the activities she is engaged in and what she would like.

Maybe she is more of an outdoors kind of person who would prefer to be doing things outside, or otherwise, maybe she is more into the academic indoors kind of activities? More hands on? Or more reading? By no means does this mean that you should change yours and her schedules entirely to meet only what she wants, because it is also important to experience richness and variety too.

Sometimes that means doing things you don’t like too and she needs to get used to that too. However, dialogue between you will help to establish a routine that suits your needs and approach with what she needs and wants also.

It may be that she suggests something new that you haven’t done within any home Ed group and you can be the one to initiate an idea of your daughters.

It may even be a matter that lies in the family only. Either she feels like an only child since her sibling is too young to play with, it once he grows up she will have company in the house and the loneliness will subside.

Alternatively, perhaps it is a reflection of her feeling a little left behind now she has a baby brother who is sharing your attention and from that perspective she is feeling lonely in the house.

If either of these may be the case, she may be more shy to express such feelings, but maybe you will get a feeling based on what you know of her.

If you believe this maybe it, then the solution lies within giving her that extra special attention just for her to let her know that you love her as much as you always did and that having another baby has not taken that away.

Make sure her to be open in expressing that love to her so that she does not experience a sense of lonliness within the home if you feel this may be the case.

May Allah reward your efforts to raise your children in the best way and may He guide you to continually do so. May He make your children the coolness of your eyes in this life and the next.


Q:

My husband and I are having marital problems. He is having an affair and spends all his time with this other woman. He is neglecting his daughter. He often comes home late and our daughter is asleep, so he doesn’t spend much time with her. He has also had an argument with his parents and we live alone.

His parents both want to be able to see their grandchild, but he isn’t happy with it. He doesn’t allow me to visit my family very often either.

His parents feel he has taken their only grandchild away from them and he never spends any time with us himself. I try to take her to meet them when I can, but it is quite hard. I am worried that my child will lose out by not spending time with her grandparents and not spending time with her father.

 Should I listen to my husband and not take her to see her grandparents? I often do it behind his back. What else can I do (if anything) to make him realize that it is important for him to spend time with his daughter?

Now, I am very depressed and fed up with the situation and I sometimes feel pressurized to stay in the marriage for my daughter. Is it okay to stay in a marriage for your children even though you are clearly unhappy, or would it be better for my child if I asked for a divorce?

A:

Wa alaikum salaam wa rahmatulahi wa barakatuh sister,

This is a very awkward situation for you to be in. Your husband is having an affair, not paying a role in your daughters upbringing and denying access to her grandparents.

None of these are acceptable either as a husband, father or son of his parents. His behaviour is selfish and very concerning. However, in the other hand, I understand you want what’s best for your daughter and that you stay with him for now for her sake despite your unhappiness.

A case could be presented both ways. You could stay with him for the sake of your daughter so that she has a dad around and is raised in a ‘normal’ environment with both mum and dad present.

However, it may also be argued that this is setting a bad example for her. That living in an environment where here father is never around is teaching her that this is how a marriage should be.

If she thinks this is how marriage should be then the chances are, she will end up in the same kind of marriage because in her eyes, this is normal she will accept that her husband is never home or playing a part in her children’s lives because this is what her own dad did.

She will accept this and perhaps live in the same unhappiness that you will. Perhaps this will not happen and it will in fact be motivation to instead find a spouse that is not like her dad and will be there based in the fact that she endured difficulties as a child without a father around.

This could happen, and certainty you could pray for the latter outcome, but it most cases, the former occurs. These are things that you should consider in making your decision.

Furthermore, you should seek advice from someone of knowledge as to whether this is a valid reason for you to seek divorce to ensure that you are keeping things in line with Islamic values.

I would imagine this makes for a strong case to seek divorce. Perhaps counselling might be advised first and this would be wise too.

At least if you attended counselling together and try and make things work and they don’t then you know that you have tried to make it work and will not walk away with any regrets as you might if you walked away without first trying to fix things.

You may also seek advise here of taking you daughter to see her grandparents without her dad’s consent to ensure again that you are abiding by what’s acceptable Islamically.

Counselling may also help in this matter in letting your husband know that he possibly cannot be withdrawing contact with her grandparents and the impact it could have in her to be denied this important contact.

Take some time away from the situation to consider your options. Consider the pros and cons for each and give yourself time to ponder the possible outcomes of them all. Once you have made a decision, take the matter to Allah and ask Him to guide you to what is best for you and your daughter and most pleasing to Him.

If you choos to go, to make sure you are surrounded by the support of your friends and family for the sake of your own and your daughters well being and to make the process as smooth as possible with as little negative impact as possible too.

May Allah guide you to what is right; to what is good for you and your daughter. May Allah be your source of comfort during this difficult and challenging time.

Monday, Sep. 28, 2020 | 10:00 - 11:00 GMT

Session is over.