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Marital Abuses
 

May 23, 2014, Kansas City, MO

By Staff Writer, Strategic Research Circle

 

Marital abuses occur among people of all races, ages, religious affiliations, occupations, and educational backgrounds.

 

Prophet Muhammad (saw) said “When somebody comes to you whose good manners or khuluq you are content with, and his faith (deen), then marry him to your daughter and if you do not do this, there will be tribulation and corruption widespread” Tirmidhi

 

It was narrated from Abu Hurairah that the Prophet (saw) said: “A woman may be married for four things: Her wealth, her lineage, her beauty or for her religion. Choose the religious, may your hands be rubbed with dust (i.e., may you prosper).

 

Following are signs of unhealthy marital relationship due to personality disorders of one or both of the partners

 

CONTROL and SUPERIORITY

The abusing partners view their spouses and children as their property instead of unique individuals. They always ask where you've been and with whom in an accusing manner.

 

Hasan reported from Abu Umamah, that prophet (saw) said "People never go astray after the guidance except they get into argumentation when they can’t agree on something. You can say that this is my position but don’t attack people for their opinions on issues that have khilaf or matters about which we are allowed to have difference of opinion. Stopping people from doing something that is not prohibited leads to hatred, resentment, and divisions" Tirmidhi

 

The goal of an abusive spouse is to make you feel weak so he can feel powerful. Abusers are frequently insecure and this power makes them feel better about themselves.

 

Ibn 'Umar said, "The Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) forbade anyone forcing a man to rise from his seat so that someone else could sit in his place.

 

They will control who you hang out with, where you going, where you have been, what you do with your money, what you wear and how often you visit or talk to family or friends. They will even force you or children to take career paths that may lead to their failure.


"He who presses for something he knows is false (or wrong) remains under the hatred of God until he gives it up." Abu Daud

 

The abuser will attempt to control you by using body language, is also a master at controlling conversations. In extreme cases female abuser will grab her partner's crotch in an attempt to assert her control.

 

INFIDELITY

Infidelity is violation of trust that creates moral and psychological conflict in a relationship. It's also one of the personality disorders.

 

“There are three signs of hypocrisy; Lying, not keeping one’s promise, and breach of trust” hadith

 

Considering a whopping 50% divorce rate, it is estimated that roughly 30 to 60% of all married individuals in the United States will engage in infidelity at some point during their marriage. Buss and Shackelford

 

Ibn Hajar Mekki defines hypocrisy as “lack of communication between one’s intentions and outward behavior”

 

Infidelity is becoming more common among young people with multiple sexual partners before they get married (Young and restless - Wall Street Journal).

 

Men are more likely to cheat than women.  But as women become more financially independent they start to act like men. With increasing of women entering the workforce, "office romances" are becoming more common.

 

Narrated Ibn 'Abbas: "The Messenger of Allah (saw) cursed the women who imitate men and the men who imitate women."

 

To keep up with socio economic status of their peers, spouses often spend more time with coworkers at workplaces than with each other. A working wife may not see any problem being alone with a maintenance man when his husband is opposed to it.

 

Narrated Ibn `Abbas: That he heard the Prophet (saw) saying, "It is not permissible for a man to be alone with a woman, and no lady should travel (long distance) except with a Muhram (i.e. her husband or a person whom she cannot marry in any case for ever; e.g. her father, brother, etc.)."

 

In this age of digital social media, an unsuspecting spouse can invite a virtual stranger in his/ her bedroom through chat or video conferencing.

 

According to Abdullah Ibn Masud, companion of the prophet (saw) “First thing you (Muslims) will lose will be amana (trustworthiness), the last thing you will lose will be salat (prayer). There will be people who will be praying while they will not have any faith”

 

“A friend (spouse) cannot be considered a friend unless he or she is tested on three occasions: in time of need, behind your back, and after your death” Ali Ibn Talib

 

MOOD SWINGS

Mood swing is inability to deal with stressful or unexpected incidents in daily life.

 

Narrated Ka'b: The Prophet (saw) said, "The example of a believer is that of a fresh tender plant, which the wind bends it sometimes and some other time it makes it straight. And the example of a hypocrite is that of a pine tree which keeps straight till once it is uprooted (snaps) suddenly.

 

Abusive husbands mood switches from aggressive to apologetic and loving, after the abuse has taken place. Their actions don't match words. They break promises. Say they love you and then abuse you or in reverse order.

 

Narrated `Abdullah bin Zam'a: "How does anyone of you beat his wife as he beats the stallion camel and then he may embrace (sleep with) her (same night)?"

 

There is always a “trigger” to mood swing. Any attempt to make her feel less than perfect or hold her responsible for a problem, will snap her for sure.

 

Your spouse could surprise you with “shock and awe.” You will not expect the level of rage you are subjected to. Don’t be surprised if you are target of flying objects, divorce threats, and 911 calls. These will be part of your life-long memories.

 

With time, such incidents and verbal abuse will become very planned and manipulative. Absurd arguments and distorted stories will wreak havoc on your mental faculties.

 

UNWILLING TO SEEK HELP

Abusing couples do not think there is anything wrong with them so why should they seek help? They don't acknowledge their faults. Some even blame it on their childhood.

 

"...and do not obey one whose heart We have made heedless of Our remembrance and who follows his desire and whose affair is ever [in] neglect" (Kahf :28)

 

There are no direct conflicts but uncertainties. The underlying hostilities are still there. There is never any real resolution or compromise to the previous conflict. There is only pseudo-forgiveness and phony apologies.

 

Establishing a demilitarized zone and avoiding each other may provide some degree of peace in your life. You have no clue what the next conflict will be about or when it will flare up. If you are a pro, you will learn to be on mental alert at all the times.

 

VIOLENCE

What starts off in early courtship as a bit of a push or a shove, can turn into full blown beatings not long down the road.

 

An abuser may physically restrain you from leaving the room or lock you out of home, lash out at you with his / her hand or another object, pin you against a wall or shout 'right in your face'. Basically any form of force used during an argument can be a sign that serious physical violence is a strong possibility. Warning Signs

 

"Four million women in the United States are beaten in their homes each year by their husbands, ex-husbands, or male lovers. ("Women and Violence," Hearings before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, August 29 and December 11, 1990, Senate Hearing 101-939, pt. 1, p. 12.)

 

It was narrated that 'Aa'ishah said: "The Messenger of Allah (saw) never beat any of his servants, or wives, and his hand never hit anything."

 

If your husband or wife is violent, you are in an abusive relationship. If she or he punches, hits and slaps you, tears your cloths, these are obvious signs the relationship is not healthy. They may also try to kick animals, punch holes in the wall or throw things at you when they don't get their ways.

 

JEALOUSY

There are two parts to the jealously. Your spouse may be jealous of you as a person or jealous when s/he is not the center of attention. However, protecting your spouse from getting into infidelity is a good jealousy.

 

Narrated Al-Mughira:

Sa`d bin Ubada said, "If I found a man with my wife, I would kill him with the sharp side of my sword." When the Prophet (saw) heard that he said, "Do you wonder at Sa`d's sense of ghira (self-respect)? Verily, I have more sense of ghira than Sa`d, and Allah has more sense of ghira than I."

 

Jealousy or hasad can damage a person’s body and spirit. Ibn Taymiyah said no one is free from hasad. A noble person hides (or controls) it but an ignorant shows it.

Sufyan Al Sawri said “Those who are not jealous would have clear mind”    

 

Then one scholar says, it does not benefit you to have envy because your envy will not make other lose what Allah gave them. Allah gave it to them and it’s up to Him to keep it with him or take it away, it’s none of my business. So it’s really a waste of time to worry about what other people have and you don't.

 

The word for second wife in Arabic is Darra  which means harm. So Arab understood that the second wife will bring Darra to the first. That’s tahabbub

 

That’s why Shariah is strict about having second wife. because most people can’t have two wives and be fair. If you give one to a wife, you should give same to other. Because prophet (saw) was most fair, he married multiple women, not out of lust but to take care of them after they became widow.

 

And takabbur is arrogance which is also cause of jealousy or hasad . This is when someone is getting ahead in wealth or position. "He does not deserve it, I am better than him". That’s takabbur. "He should not have gotten a new car or house. Why him, why not me?"

 

Walid Ibn Mughaira and Abu Jahal had it. They had it against prophet (saw). They considered him an orphan of Bani Hashim. Ibn Abi Kebsha. That’s what they called him, his father by wet-nursing. He does not deserve this honor (na'ma) of being spoken to from heaven. We deserve it more than he does.

 

Taazzuz is less harmful than takabbur in which a person does not mind feeling the same as the other. As long as I have same type of house, car, or income, it’s OK. But suddenly one gets the job promotion or his business takes off. "It should not happen to me". "He is going to start looking down on me because I have less than what he or she has. I am trying to maintain my dignity or Izza here". It is also a sign of poor self-esteem or poor self worth. So it’s an attempt to re-establish balance of wealth and position. "My daughter is going to medical school to become a nurse. your daughter is studying medicine to become physician". Feeling lowly too is cause of hasad.

 

Hubur riyasa or love of leadership is desire to maintain a position of authority. One has position of authority but his opponent, having a blessing, could threaten his position is also a form of hasad or jealously.

 

So he is saying that we should turn our disability into advantage. Allah says, la hasada illa fi sanatain there is no envy except in two people. One who is given wealth and he gives it away. In another riwayaat, he is giving by night and by day. That is a good reason to envy that person. Not that you want this person to lose what he has but you wish to be like him to have wealth so that you could also give like he gives. That in Arabic is called ghibta which is a positive envy.  And the other person is rajalun u’tia hikma. Man who is given wisdom so he passes on to others.

 

Allah Most High says:

"Are they the ones who apportion the mercy of your Lord? It is We who have divided their livelihoods between them in this life, and raised some of them in degrees above others"

(Koran 43:32).

 

So whoever does not accept this division opposes Allah (Most High) in His apportionment and His

wisdom. One must remedy one's human nature, accept their destiny and resist jealousy by praying that one's enemy be given what one's self-interest might prefer him not to have (al-Arba'un al-Nawawiyya wa sharhuha)

 

ISOLATION

Your partner may withhold emotional intimacy, or play the 'silent game' as punishment when he/ she doesn't get his or her way. However, isolation can sometimes be useful to discipline one's partner.

Abusive spouses want you all to themselves. They do not want you spending time with family or friends. They don't want you hanging around with other people in fear that they may see or hear the abuse. The abuser may try to limit your social interaction and demand that you only go places 'together' or consider people who are your personal friends as 'causing trouble' or 'trying to create a wedge' between you and them. She may refuse to talk to you, ignore you until she gets her way.

Abusive husbands also try to isolate children from their mother

It was narrated that Abu Musa said: "The Messenger of Allah (saw) cursed the one who separates a mother and her child, or a brother from his brother."

VERBAL ABUSE

Your spouse is abusive if she or he yells, screams or emotionally freaks out over small things. Abuser will always dismiss your feelings and threatens you.

Related Abu Hurairah, the Messenger of Allah (saw) said, "When two persons indulge in abusing each other, the beginner will be the sinner so long as the oppressed does not transgress the limits."

 

A verbally abusive man will talk down to you or call you names in order to make himself feel better.

 

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said: "Cursing a believer is like killing him (or her)."

 

Abdullah bin 'Amr narrated that the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w) said:

"Whoever is silent, he is saved."

 

The Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) said: "Modesty is of faith, and faith is in paradise. Vulgarity is of rudeness, and rudeness is in hell."

 

Allah detests the foul mouthed, vulgar person.

 

Narrated Sahl bin Sa'd: Allah's Apostle said, "Whoever can guarantee (the chastity of) what is between his two jaw-bones and what is between his two legs (i.e. his tongue and his private parts), I guarantee Paradise for him."

 

GASLIGHT

Gaslighting is a manipulative behavior used to confuse people into thinking their reactions are so far off that they’re crazy. It's a form of mental abuse in which false information is presented with the intent of making a victim doubt his or her own memory, perception, and sanity. Instances may range simply from the denial by an abuser that previous abusive incidents ever occurred. This term is now used in clinical research.

 

So when we hate other people, we deny our own evil or shadow and say that this is not us, it’s our enemy. Yes, we try to project dark side of our own soul on others. All the bad qualities we have in ourselves we try to find them in other people. What we see in other people is actually projection of shadow of our own problems.

 

When you are willing to compromise, your partner will approach you in a calm manner, offer apology with a dose of blame. “I’m sorry, but. . . it’s really your fault.” You have no choice but to convince yourself that your partner is sincere this time.

 

All you have to do is admit that your partner's actions were your fault and you need to change your ways. Surprisingly, your partner will let you speak this time. Nothing you say will be correct but at least your partner will pretend to listen. Offer of a "bribe" might even be made to facilitate your compliance with the program.

 

And if their manipulation is exposed, they say they can't help being abusive so you feel sorry for them and you keep trying to 'help' him or her. They also lie that it's their spouses who gave them the bad habits.

 

Your spouse will play Pseudo-Victim role. You are now outgunned and dealing with a psychological special operations unit. Your partner skills at being a victim are so well built that you will even start to doubt yourself. Things get very dramatic.

 

She will cry and need to be consoled by relatives and friends. The guilt trips she lays on you are very profound. You used her as a beast of burden.

 

At this point she has successfully done the role reversal. Her original reactions are completely “off topic.” You now find yourself defending yourself about one of the other issues brought up in distant past. You will find yourself shell-shocked not knowing what you are really arguing about.

 

Your partner will continue to repeat the cycles from “playing nice” to the “role reversal” until she is satisfied that she has won the battle.

 

In a normal relationship, one would be able to eliminate the cycle of conflict through understanding and compromise. However, with high-conflict individuals, this cycle is deeply ingrained within their DNA. There is no compromise. There is merely a pattern of distortions and manipulations designed to blame you for any lack of responsibility or accountability on their part. Absolute control of the partner is the goal. This is very difficult to identify and understand in the beginning.

 

Only through careful observation can one begin to perceive the true intent of your partner’s manipulative actions.

 

UNREASONABLE EXPECTATIONS

Your partner expects you to be the perfect husband, wife, mother, father, lover, and friend. He/she is very dependent on you for all his/ her needs. Your abuser may expect you to provide everything for him/ her emotionally, financially and spiritually, and then blame you for not being perfect or living up to the expectations.

 

Narrated Ibn 'Abbas: The Prophet said: "I was shown the Hell-fire and that the majority of its dwellers were women who were ungrateful." It was asked, "Do they disbelieve in God?" (or are they ungrateful to Allah?) He replied, "They are ungrateful to their husbands and are ungrateful for the favors and the good (charitable deeds) done to them. If you have always been good to one of them and then she sees something in you (not of her liking), she will say, 'I have never received any good from you."

 

THREATS

There are 16,800 homicides and $2.2 million (medically treated) injuries (in United State) due to intimate partner violence annually, which costs $37 billion. (The Cost of Violence in the United States. 2007. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Centers for Injury Prevention and Control. Atlanta, GA.)

 

Does your husband put you in situations that makes you fear for your life? If he tries to intimidate you, make you feel scared, control and manipulate you to the point where you are fearful of his actions, you are in an abusive relationship.

 

CAN'T HANDLE CRITICISM

Abusive spouses can't handle criticism. You cannot even give constructive criticism without it backfiring. They perceive everything as negative criticism and are highly offended by that. But they are more than able to criticize, usually in a rude way. If you tell them they are rude, they will say you are too sensitive.

 

“A believer is a mirror to another believer” Imam Shafi always improved himself by listening to his critics.

 

Blame is not something that people welcome. It runs against human nature to accept it. It becomes problematic when the fear of blame is mixed with the urgent desire for praise and approval by others. Getting worried too much about other people opinion creates a distance between a person and the ihsan or excellence.

 

BLAME SHIFTING

 

Very rarely will an abusive spouse accept responsibility for any fault. If they lost job or could not finish college, it is always someone else's fault. They believe someone is out to get them.

 

Your partner could be psychological weapons expert. She could have been the way she is since her childhood. When she does not get her ways, she just goes on autopilot and bad things happen.

Abuser may make a mistake and then blame you for preventing them from doing what they planned to do.

It's just that simple. You are wrong! Anything you do or say is wrong. Even an apology would be wrong. Your recollections of the events are wrong.

 

Your partner claims that all of her relatives, friends, therapists, police and even gardner agrees with her. They all know you are an abusive husband. She is the judge, jury, and executioner all in one. You are not able to say a word in your defence. All you can do is hunker down and let the bombs fall.

 

Then there is topic war. Every incident you had since the beginning of your relationship will come up randomly. Any sensitive information you have shared with your partner will be used against you. The attacks become very personal in nature. "You don’t make enough money". "You’re not man". God forbid if you even try to defend yourself, you have just been read your Miranda rights. Anything you say can and will be used against you. The covert operation is over. You lost the battle.

 

If you are willing to accept your partner's phony apologies and “drink the Kool-Aid”, you still caused her to act poorly to start with. You are basically on parole. If you violate your parole, the conflict will immediately pick up where it was left off.

 

RIGID GENDER ROLE

 

Abusers usually believe in stereotypical gender roles. A man may expect a woman to serve him; stay at home, obey him in all things - even things that are criminal in nature. A male abuser will often see women as inferior to men, more stupid, unable to be a whole person without a relationship. Female abusers may expect the man to provide for them entirely, shift the responsibility for her well-being onto him or heckle him as being "not a real man" in case he shows any weakness or emotion.

Warning Signs

 

Once, there was a man who came to ‘Umar Ibn Khattab to complain about the misbehavior of his wife. While he was waiting for ‘Umar by the door, he heard ‘Umar’s wife speaking to him indecently but ‘Umar was keeping silent. Thereupon, the man went back and said, “If this is the case of ‘Umar who was decisive and he was also the Commander of the Believers what about me?” Then ‘Umar went out and noticed him leaving. He called him and said, “What do you want?” The man said, “O Commander of the Believers, I came to complain about my wife’s misconduct and her indecency towards me but when I heard your wife I went back and said what about me?” ‘Umar then said, “O brother, I endured her misbehavior for some rights upon me to her: she cooks my food, bakes my bread, washes my clothes and suckles my babies. She is not required to do such work. Furthermore, my heart is repelled from the unlawful because of her. Thereby, I endured her. “So is my wife, Commander of the Believers” the man said.

 

SRC (www.srcircle.org) is a non profit 501c3 conducting research on issues such as private enterprise, social responsibility, and civil rights. Additional contribution by Dr. Tara, High-Conflict Phases of Abuse, Blame Shifting, Distortion, Rage and Manipulation Diagram.





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