Answered by Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil
Question: Assalam aleykum,
I have three small children under the age of 5. Less than a year ago, my mother-in-law passed away, and from that day until now, he sleeps in his father’s room. My father-in-law is not sick.
I sleep in a separate room with our three children. I only sleep next to my husband when guests come over. Is my husband doing the right thing by me?
Answer: Assalamualaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,
I pray this finds you well. May Allah reward you for reaching out to us. Please forgive me for the delay.
Your husband sounds like a very concerned son, and that is praiseworthy. However, your rights are important too. It is obligatory for your husband to look after both his father as well as you, and your children. The key here is balance.
It is very important for you to communicate your unhappiness with your husband. Having three small children is incredibly exhausting, and one of the ways you can recharge is by nourishing your marriage by tending to your marital bed.
If your husband is not sleeping next to you, do you still have marital intimacy? This is a very important part of your marriage, and if neglected, can lead to bigger problems later on.
How open is your husband to your influence? Does he accept feedback well? Many spouses tend to go to the defensive, especially when you raise topics related to their parents.
Please of ways you can soften your start-up before bringing up this topic to your husband. Expect him to go on the defensive the first few times.
Do you and your husband have enough time alone? Please make it a point to nourish your marriage by spending quality time together on a regular basis.
Do you have enough support in your daily life? The daily care of three small children is exhausting, so please reach out for help. Even if it’s once a week, please ensure that you have some time to yourself to recharge alone.
I pray that Allah brings you and your husband closer together.
[Ustadha] Raidah Shah Idil
Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil has spent almost two years in Amman, Jordan, where she learned Shafi’i’ fiqh, Arabic, Seerah, Aqeedah, Tasawwuf, Tafsir and Tajweed. She continues to study with her Teachers in Malaysia and online through SeekersHub Global. She graduated with a Psychology and English degree from University of New South Wales, was a volunteer hospital chaplain for 5 years and has completed a Diploma of Counselling from the Australian Institute of Professional Counsellors. She lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, with her husband, daughter, and mother-in-law.