Is the Husband’s First Priority His Parents Whereas a Wife’s Her Husband?

Answered by Ustadha Zaynab Ansari Abdur-Razacq

Question: Is it true that in Islam, a husband’s first priority is always to his parents, while the wife’s first priority should be to her husband?

Answer: In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds. May the peace and blessings of Allah descend on the Prophet Muhammad, his family, his companions, and those who follow them.

Dear Sister,

Thank you for your question.

No. The Prophet, Allah bless him and give him peace said, “Give everyone who has a right their due right.”

Both you and your husband have to learn to balance between the rights of each other, your respective parents, your children, and other members of your families.

In a situation where a conflict arises, you have to assess what is in everyone’s best interests. Generally, women obey their husbands unless they are ordering them to do something unlawful. That is why it might seem that husbands take priority. On the other hand, in some Muslim cultures, a man may listen to his parents before his wife. That is why it seems his parents take priority.

It is best to aim to strike a balance between these interests. If the interests compete, then you and your husband need to sit down, talk it out, and work out a solution that is pleasing to Allah and favorable to overall family harmony.

May Allah reward you,

Zaynab Ansari Abdul-Razacq
October 6, 2009
Shawwal 17, 1430

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani