Quran For All

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How To Guard Your Husband’s Honor As Allah Has Commanded

Posted by Admin on July 26, 2008

By Sadaf Farooqi

Traditionally, occupations such as cooking, sewing, fashion designing and interior decorating were considered the exclusive terrain of women. Today, however, they have all witnessed incursions by men, to some extent. One domain, though, still remains predominantly women’s-only, and that is home-making. This is because it is woman’s innate nature to be the master of her home. As manager, guard and coordinator, she happily does the household chores and caters to her family’s needs, while the husband, more often than not the chief breadwinner, remains absent throughout the day at work.

Allah has acknowledged this aspect of the functional family unit, by instructing women to be “guards” of their husband’s property and honour in the latter’s absence:

Therefore, the righteous women are devoutly obedient (to the husband), and guard in (the husband’s) absence what Allah would have them guard…

[Qur’an – Surah Al-Nisaa: 34]

Guarding “what Allah would have them guard” implies that a Muslim wife should guard:

  • Her husband’s property (house, money, belongings, and anything which he leaves behind),
  • Her own modesty and chastity, and finally,
  • Her husband’s honour and reputation.

Guarding her husband’s honour would mean not mentioning him, his character, or his deeds to any third person in a derogatory or defaming manner – ever. Although the world generally frowns upon an untidy home in disarray, or a cheating wife flirting with other men, this aspect of a wife’s loyalty – her maintaining her husband’s honour behind his back – is something even many “good” wives fail to accomplish. Women generally speak well of their husbands to people they are not close to. It’s the close relatives and friends, however, who unwittingly cause slips.

  1. Be careful of unintentional slips in conversations with other women:

    “The plumber came, and I had to rush back home to supervise his work, as [my husband] is totally useless; on Saturdays, he lies in bed all day and does absolutely nothing…”
    “My husband snores so loudly, it could scare anyone who hears him in the middle of the night.”
    “He offers to cook, but his dishes turn out horrible, so I’d rather not eat what he makes…”
    “He never takes me shopping; he’s always involved in his work.”
    During the gush of such ‘girly’ conversations, their husbands’ potent faults are unintentionally revealed. The listeners/on-lookers chuckle knowingly, nodding their heads in compassionate comprehension. What they enjoy is the pleasure of knowing that this supposedly “happy” and perfect Muslim couple too, have the usual marital differences; that even seemingly “righteous” couples cannot always live in harmony. And last but not least, it gives them fodder for gossip.
    Even if there is no major argument between the couple, how often we see Muslim women casually commenting to each other about their husband’s shortcomings. Whether on the phone, or during a visit, it is common to hear them complaining about their husbands to their mother, sister, cousin, or best friend. Even if they discuss their husband lovingly, some hidden aspect of the comment, or merely the tone of voice, sometimes carries disdain or derision.

  2. Remember that mentioning your husband’s weaknesses might initiate gossip about you:

    The gossip-mongers in any social circle dwell on the “juicy” tidbits regarding other couples’ marital discord, for which they fish around in conversation and hearsay. We have all heard the stories about the in-law hovering outside the bedroom door while the husband and wife argued, or the “sincere” friend giving a frustrated wife her shoulder to cry on, only to discuss the account with her other friends later.

  3. Remember that protecting the husband’s honor is one of Allah’s commands for a Muslim wife:

    What Muslim women should be wise enough to understand is that, by revealing their husband’s faults to anyone else, they are disobeying Allah and thus putting themselves at risk of His wrath. They alone, are to lose out by this action.
    Even though Islam allows a woman to seek help for major problems in her marriage, it enjoins her to bear all trivial marital problems with patience and discretion.
    A woman does not get as much respect anywhere in the world as she does in her husband’s home: there, she’s the queen of her throne, elegant and ethereal. When she defames her husband in any way to a third person, she lowers herself from this high pedestal.
    She gives people a chance to mock her and discuss her with others, becoming the topic of coffee-table repartee.

  4. Beware of the concern of even your biological mothers and sisters – it can sometimes be the cause of your marital troubles:

    Narrated by Ibn Abbas, Prophet Muhammad [Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him] said:
    The best woman (wife) is the one who, when you look at her she pleases you, when you command her she obeys you, and when you are not in her presence, she safeguards herself and your belongings.”
    [Ibn Majah 1861]
    Muslim women should be careful about this matter even with their biological sisters and mothers. At the end of the day, no one wants a woman to come and live with them if she gets divorced or estranged from her husband. They, however, do enjoy listening to her incessantly complain of the problems in her husband’s home: how low the finances are, how untidy her husband is, how much he eats, or how he neglects her rights. They might throw bygone incidents in her face even months after she has moved on and forgotten them, so that she starts brimming with indignation all over again, at their mention.
    Muslim women should try not to fall prey to the instigations of such “well-wishing” people, who laugh when she mocks her husband, who relish her marital dissensions, who thrive on getting to know other women’s domestic troubles. They are devils in disguise, preying on the tranquility of others’ homes, seeking juicy coffee-party gossip. Muslim women should beware of disobeying Allah in this regard.

  5. Make only righteous, Allah-fearing woman your close confidantes and ‘shoulders to cry on’:

    Even if you have a fight with your husband and you feel you must mention it to someone to feel better, do it with someone who has high taqwa [consciousness of Allah], who will never divulge your story to anyone else. Even your own mother might mention it to her sister, who might tell her daughter, and in this way, the whole family might be discussing your household troubles and commenting about them, weeks or months after the whole thing has blown over.

Remember that in every command of Allah lies a potent hikmah, a hidden wisdom that is beneficial for you. He loves you seventy times more than your well-wishing mother. Run to Him – in salah [regular Islamic prayer], dua [praying to Him], dhikr [His remembrance by the tongue and heart], and istighfar [seeking His forgiveness for sins] – whenever you have a bone to pick with your husband. For the solution and the solace after the storm, trust in Allah. If you keep your duty to Him, He will never relinquish you – rather, He will fill your home with unbridled peace, harmony and tranquility.

This article was first published on the website howtodothings.com.


18 Responses to “How To Guard Your Husband’s Honor As Allah Has Commanded”

  1. Adnan Siddiqi said

    Mashallah Zabardast!

    Thanks for posting this. This is something which should not read by Women but Men too!

    It would be nice if you produce something similar for Muslim Husbands as its common perspective that Muslim Husbands just like to misuse their power and keep their women captive, mentally or physically

  2. AA said


    Are’nt men aslo expected to refrain from complaining about their wives?

  3. Sadaf said

    Thanks for the suggestion! Your feedback is appreciated. We’ll see what we can do, insha’Allah.

  4. drsuleman@arslantrading.com said

    This would more beneficial that this article to be posted in Urdu, also on Al-Huda website.

  5. Sadaf said

    Yes, definitely, husbands are also prohibited from complaining about their wives. However, this article is based on the quality of pious women which Allah has mentioned FOREMOST in His description of them in Surah Al-Nisaa:34 – “Haafidhaatul lil-ghaibi bimaa hufidh Allahu” (female-protectors in the husbands’ absence of what Allah would have them guard) – and this article aims to explain how pious women can acquire this quality – that of guarding their husbands’ honor.
    As for Muslim men, if one goes through the Quran, one notices that Allah has commanded them to treat women kindly. “Aashiroohunna Bil Ma’roof” – and dwell with them in a good way. This comes in Surah Al-Nisaa, verse 19. The same surah!
    As you all have yourself pointed out: these two exhortations of Allah are aptly directed. For women, because they tend to complain and be a tad ungrateful (it is their innate weakness) no matter how good their husband is. For men, because they tend to scold and/or shout at their wives at the slightest mistake (it is their innate weakness to lose their temper at women’s shortfalls). In another place in the SAME surah in the Quran, Allah admonishes men to not hate their wives: “…if you hate them, it may be that you dislike a thing while Allah has placed abundant good in it. .” [Surah Al-Nisaa: 19]
    You are right; we should work on another article directed at the Muslim men. And we are very grateful to all our brothers for this good suggestion. Jazaakumullahu khairan for your comments.

  6. nadia said

    mashaallah sister sadaf, I love your explanation in the comment box. That is enlightening !

    jazakillah khair!

  7. Amatullah said

    Jazakum Allahu khayran sister, that was very beautiful advice for us!

  8. fary said

    Alhamdo Lillah we still have friends who advise us the best, this relation is the most difficult that is why All (swt) has laid stress on it on several occasions in Quran. The reason is that it should be practiced, which is very difficult with so many different people, attitudes, practices around us. We should get more closer to Quran and try to get more knowledge of it. Surah Al Fatiha is the best dua when ever we have any doubt or complain recite this gift of Allah (swt) remembering each word’s meaning which will definately give more strength and belief and the out come would be Tawakal Al Allah and the rewards hereafter. No one can change any one BUT Allah, so keep focused on ones own deeds, Insha Allah every one will be successful.

  9. musferah said

    salam sis sadaf…i enjoy reading this article very much specially the solution for any problem of marital relationship dat u hav mentioned in last lines of article…

  10. s.shah said

    Assalam alaikum,
    This is an eye opener,yes we women do indulge in this often.I too used to do itsometimes though Alhamdulillah my husband is very nice.Its a really bad quality in us that we are never satisfied,Inshaallah I will try to erase this habit in future.Jazak Allah

  11. asmaa said

    jazaakallahu khayr 4 the important tips may ALLAH swt guide us to the straight path ameen

  12. Dear Sister ,
    Aasalamwalkum rahmath allahi o barkatahu

    ur article is very nice alhumdullaha jazakallaha for given nice talk with beautiful suggestions.
    alhumdullaha islam has given high possition to women ,every men and women has to obey islam and make our lives by fallowing quran then only we can get sucess here and hereafter inshallah .

  13. Naimah said

    Beautifully written , plz do also tell us about Islam & joint family system.

  14. Simeen a.Hussain said

    Its amazing that though this article had been posted months ago I only read it today, when I needed guidance and reminding of certain things.It is Allah’s Hikmah and grace that He guides us through different means at an opportunate moment when we need it most. Jazakallah khair.I also read your articles in Hiba Magazine. May Allah reward you for your good work.

  15. saleha said

    Mashallah Subhanal allah allahuma zid !!

    Salam ,
    U have very beautifuly wrote and expalined the importance & benifits of obeying allah in married life . Im not married but inshallah i will remember and will apply in my life later.keep up ur skilled ability to take off the ignorance of human beings from their creater and his word (QURAN ).

  16. khanum said

    I have a question, a couple love each other and due to any reason wife became impotent and husband is OK, he want to marry but wife doesn’t want. What should husband do? he loves wife and family but still have desire?

  17. ZA said

    i wanted to ask a question related to nikkah in islam.
    will the nikkah be acceptable if the bride is not happy and she does not like the groom and dont want to marry him??

  18. Admin said

    Khanum and ZA – your questions are related to jurisprudence, and can be best answered by qualified Mufti’s. Please refer to the links below:
    Marrying an impotent man
    Being forced to marry someone you dislike
    Allah knows best.

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