How to Deal with the Emotional Abuse of My Father?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

My father is emotionally torturing me. I am the second daughter, so my father did not want me, so he sent me to my grandparents, who raised me. After 20 years, he argued with my grandfather to torture him; he said he wanted me back. When I opposed it, he threatened to divorce my mom, so I had to return. He beat me up once, and he calls me impertinent because my grandparents brought me up and because when he abuses them in front of me, I tell him to stop.

I have lost every connection with Allah. I stopped praying and only made dua and asked Allah, “Why me?” I know you will suggest I pray, but it’s not happening. Even if I try, I’m not able to. I don’t want to end my life because I know that will kill my grandparents. I am tired, sensitive, and drained, and Allah doesn’t hear me because I’m a sinner.

Answer

Please don’t despair. Allah does hear you, and He is giving you a tremendous test that he wants you to pass so that he can raise your rank and make you of his close friends (saints). Allah, Most High, says, “Say, ˹O Prophet, that Allah says,˺ “O My servants who have exceeded the limits against their souls! Do not lose hope in Allah’s mercy, for Allah forgives all sins. He is indeed the All-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [Quran, 39:53]

Du’a

You say that at the moment, you can only make du’a and not pray. Then I ask that you do so enthusiastically and out of complete impoverishment to Him. Say the du’a from The Prayer Of Need when you can, morning or night, although before dawn is better. Ask Allah to give you relief from this situation. Ask Him to strengthen you and allow you to learn from this to improve yourself. He is always there to listen, and He loves questions. Being a sinner or not a sinner is not proportionate with Allah’s generosity nor His ability to hear you. Don’t put these thoughts in your head.

The Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “When half of the night or two-thirds of it is over, Allah, the Blessed and the Exalted, descends to the lowest heaven and says: ‘Is there any beggar so that he be given? Is there any supplicator so that he be answered? Is there any beggar of forgiveness so that he be forgiven? (And Allah continues it saying) till it is daybreak.’” [Muslim]

Allah Sees your Suffering

Know that Allah Most High sees your suffering and understands your pain. His mercy maybe not be evident throughout, but it is there in subtle ways, and you will get the reward according to the decisions you make to get an eternal reward in the afterlife. See this link for details: The Reality of Allah’s Mercy and the Divine Wisdom Behind Suffering.

Find solace in the fact that your dua’s are listened to because you are among the oppressed: The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “Beware of the supplication of the oppressed; for indeed there is no barrier between it and Allah.” [Tirmidhi]

Your Well-Being

Please take some steps to work through this for your emotional well-being. I am concerned about you when you speak of being drained and tired. Talk to a local scholar or teacher to give you advice. Talk to a counselor or therapist about your emotions to be able to work through them. Speak to a close religious friend who can positively influence you. Also, keep track of the prayers you have missed; you will want to know that in the future.

Take steps for self-care. Eat healthy food, cut out sugar, take supplements, especially Vitamin D, and exercise regularly. Pray when you can, read some Quran with the meaning every day, even if only one verse, and pick up a beneficial hobby or skill to help you later. Take a free course on Seekers for your obligatory knowledge or another facet of life.

See these links:
Selected Prophetic Prayers for Spiritual, Physical, and Emotional Well-being by Chaplain Ibrahim Long
Du’a – Supplication for one whose affairs have become difficult
Ridding Oneself of Depression and Suicidal Thoughts

May Allah bless you, help you out of this, and send you a special opening that will leave you pleased with Him and Him.

Given the considerations in such cases, we urge you to consult reliable local scholars or counselors about the situation’s specifics. Jazakum Allah khayran. May Allah facilitate all ease and good for you.

[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria, for two years where she studied aqida, fiqh, tajweed, tafsir, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She later moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.