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Respected sir/ madame, I require guidance. I got married in June 2015. From the onset of my marriage family issues began which led to bitterness between the families. My mother insulted my husband in mannerism saying that she will give me no dowry as this is the reason the proposal was made in the first place. That offended my husband more and I wished to salvage the marriage and stayed with my husband. Upon myfather’s death, I got into contact with my mother and subsequently, my husband started fighting with me and distrust developed as he thinks I have back stabbed him. He refuses to get the nikkah registered saying that if we end up divorcing he’ll have to pay me half the amount for the proprety. I even said that I will sign a legal document that I will claim nothing. There is no haq mehr. He prevented his family from coming to my father’s funeral and my entire family told me that he was showing a lot of disrespect to me and that I am in a very vulnerable state and should go back to him on terms and conditions that he register the nikkah so that legally I’m his wife. I am firmly of the belief that Allah makes matches and marriage is a responsibilty that needs to be lived upto for Allah’s sake. However recently, I left his house as emothionally we had lost all connection between us apart from physical and that felt so forced as he did it for my sake and not wanted it himself. I felt as if he is doing a favor on me by being physical with me but apart from that I lived like a shadow under his roof. If I needed something, I would have to ask him a few times and still he wouldn’t get me what I needed apart from groceries and the essentials. He wouldn’t give me any money aside either and in talk would make me feel degraded. Above all of this he is having an extra maritial “friend”. He has begged me to return home and I said only on the condition that he register the nikkah. But he refuses to do that still and says to return unconditonally as I did before. I have been doing istekhara since I left the home. My family and friends say that if he’s not registering the nikkah and doesn’t like it if I speak to my family whenever I want (he says not to talk more than once a week) and if I need anything I have to ask him and he avoids it then get a divorce. I begin to feel guilty about asking for a divorce. It feels as if I’m failing a responsibilty that Allah placed on my shoulders. He doesn’t have a strong belief in religion. I blindly believe that marriage is what Allah brings to you but divorce man brings on him or her self. I took a fa’al from the quran and the ayat from surat yaseen “Salamun qao lamir rubbir rahim” came up. I still don’t feel like filing for a divorce and then at the same I’m scared that I’m not being practicle and am denying myself the right to better proposals. I have always tried my level best to live a life that is in accordance with my conscience in front of Allah. I’m no angel but I genuinely don’t know what to do. The feeling I got from istekhara was strong to avoid him and leave him but now that I’m trying to get information about actually filing a divorce and taking steps things aren’t falling into step for that process. When I left home, Allah helped me alot. I had excess luggage, and the machine refused to take extra payment. I was short of money. I met a taxi man who didn’t charge me for two days and helped me get to the airport. I felt Allah’s support. I am a doctor and have been trying to get employment and it seems Allah may be helping me in this regard. Avenues seem to be opening. I want to go back to my husband only for fear of letting down Allah’s expectations of me. Otherwise I feel as if I’m not being practical and stupid. I need advice. I won’t ever be able to live with guilt of letting down Allah. I pray Allah brings my husband on the right path also. The lady I am staying with had similar issues when she first got married and says from personal andother experiences that people don’t change and he will treat me worse as time goes on. I’m stuck between my conscience and being practical. Please help me. I wish not to go against Allah.

Alaykum Salaam

I have read your query carefully and I agree that it appears unlikely that your husband is committed to this marriage because he will not register the nikah and he is also seeing another woman.

However, before you take steps towards divorce,  I suggest that you involve a local scholar and have a frank discussion in his presence with your husband. That way, he will have to explain his actions and his commitment, if any to the relationship.

After that you can decide the next steps.

I pray for the best outcome for you.

Kind regards

Abbas Jaffer