When a husband has been afflicted with the great misfortune of having fallen into the trap of an extra-marital affair, it calls for considerable patience and intelligence from his wife. Such a development is extremely delicate and is fraught with calamitous consequences for the marriage bond. The course which the marriage will take largely depends on the attitude and reaction of his wife. If she behaves intelligently and demonstrates considerable patience, she can assist her husband in his predicament and save her marriage. On the contrary, if she loses her mind and gives vent to her emotional feelings, she will only achieve the alienation of her husband. She will drive him away from herself and wreck her marriage.
The wife should understand well that she will never be able to induce her husband to abandon the other woman by displaying anger and by hurling accusations and insult at her husband. When a wife discovers that her husband is having an affair with another woman, the first thing she should do is to arrest her emotional feelings and understand that she will not succeed to separate her husband from the other woman by anger and argument. By adopting anger and a stance of confrontation, her husband will only become more obstinate. Whatever little love and feeling he still cherishes for his wife will be eliminated by her confrontation with him. She will only drive him closer to the other woman.
The husband involved with another woman is emotionally disturbed. His wife’s rough and harsh attitude will convince him that the other woman possesses qualities of love and charm which his wife lacks. Her fighting attitude – which wives usually display when they hear of their husband’s extra – marital affairs – will make her appear as a hag, and a witch to him. Her harsh confrontation with him will eliminate any guilt feelings which he had hitherto cherished in his heart. He will now feel that the other woman is offering him love and happiness which he cannot obtain from his wife. An intelligent wife who desires to salvage her husband and keep intact her marriage, will not allow the situation to deteriorate to this level.
The woman of intelligence and understanding should face this delicate situation with great patience (Sabr), supplicating to Allah Ta’ala to guide her husband and to open his mind so that he wakes up and becomes alert to the dangerous and sinful trap into which he has allowed himself to become ensnared. She should discuss the matter with him intelligently and respectfully without adopting an argumentive and obstinate attitude. She should endeavour to explain to him his folly, wrong and sin. She should endeavour to win over his heart with love and tender tones reminding him of the Law, Fear and Punishment of Allah Ta’ala. If the husband rebuffs her Naseehat, she should not give up hope. Leave the matter for a while and resume the Naseehat respectfully, humbly and intelligently at another time when he is in a better mood.
She should bear her grief within herself, seeking solace in the Thikr of Allah Ta’ala. The Qur’aan Shareef says:
“Those who have Imaan, their hearts find peace with Thikrullah. Verily, with the Remembrance of Allah do hearts find peace.”
She should resign herself to Allah Ta’ala and make Dua earnestly and constantly. She should understand that in the final analysis, whatever Allah Ta’ala chooses for her will be in her best interests. She should, therefore, not allow her grief – which is just normal and natural – to give rise to frustration, impatience, and un-Islamic behaviour. An intelligent wife facing up to this delicate situation with courage, understanding and patience will put her husband to shame by means of her noble and dignified reaction. His indulgence in his error will be self-devouring. He will feel guilty and his injustice will torture his soul. He will feel mediocre in his own heart. His conscience will be smitten with guilt and regret. A good man will soon see his folly and return to his wife humbly and full of shame and regret.
On the other hand, if the wife attempts to alienate her husband from the other woman by adopting a bullying, quarrelling, nagging and un-woman-like attitude, then the result will be the opposite. It will lead to the breakdown of the marriage. A wife should learn a very important rule, viz. that a husband cannot be tamed and won over by nagging and quarrelling. To achieve success for her marriage the wife must be submissive, humble, and walk the path of piety. If she seeks to emulate her western Kuffaar counterparts in the movement of liberalism and female ‘emancipation and equality’, then she should understand that she is treading the road to divorce which is a daily occurrence among western couples.
Extract from: Al-Mar’atus Saalihah – The Pious Women – By Musjisul Ulama of S.A