What Are My Rights When Living with My In-Laws?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

Unfortunately, I’m going through some difficulties living with my husband’s family. He isn’t fulfilling his responsibilities towards me and his parents are controlling every aspect of our lives. This is having a hugely detrimental effect on our relationship and my mental health. I’m trying to seek advice on understanding my rights and have written these down to give us all some clarity. Unfortunately, my husband and especially his parents have rejected each and every one of these.

Answer

Thank you for your question. I am sorry that you are going through difficulties in living with your in-laws. Being newly married and dealing with his family will require much patience and understanding from both sides.

Rights

Please see these links about your marital rights:
What Are a Wife’s Rights and Responsibilities in a Difficult Marriage?
A Wife’s Right to Housing Separate From Her In-Laws
What Does Islam Say About the Neglect of the Wife’s Sexual Rights?
How Do I Understand Men’s Marital Rights in Islam?

Kindness

Also, I highly recommend that you take a course on the subject of Islamic Marriage with your husband, and review the rights and obligations of both parties. This will be a big eye-opener. I also recommend that you change your approach with your in-laws. If you come on too strong, they will just oppose you, even if you are right. The Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace), said, “Allah is kind and loves kindness, and He rewards for kindness in a way that He does not reward for harshness.“ [Ahmad]

Course Recommendation:
Marriage in Islam: Practical Guidance for Successful Marriage

May Allah give you the best of this world and the next.
[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqidah, 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.