Even though both the husband and wife have rights over each other, and the rights are pretty similar, there are a few concerns that show that the husband’s rights in Islam are greater.
A wife has to obey her husband as long as he doesn’t command anything haram. This is one of the most important commands, which is greater than the obedience of parents after marriage to a wife.
And there’s a famous hadith from Prophet Muhammad ﷺ that summary that if people were commanded to prostrate before anyone after Allah, this would be women prostrating before their husbands.
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This hadith alone shows the importance of the obedience of the husband, as long as it’s related to halal matters.
In this article, you will learn all you need to know about these rights in detail with references of the Quran and hadith.
Why is the Husband Rights in Islam Important?
As I have mentioned earlier, the husband’s right over his wife is actually greater than the wife’s right over her husband. According to the scholars, this is because of this verse in the Quran –
“And they (women) have rights (over their husbands as regards living expenses) similar (to those of their husbands) over them (as regards obedience and respect) to what is reasonable, but men have a degree (of responsibility) over them. [al-Baqarah 2:228]
So, the husband is the one who is responsible for the financial, mental, and physical, matters of his wife. Similarly, the wife also has to fulfill the mental and physical demands along with taking care of the family, and be careful about the likes and dislikes of her husband.
More or less, both spouses have similar rights over the other. But the right of obedience is one particular right over the wife that the wife herself doesn’t have over the husband.
Therefore, if a husband doesn’t take care of the financial matters of his wife, it would be a major sin. But, disobeying the husband is considered as a more sinful act.
8 Major Rights of Husbands in Islam
You might already know some of the rights mentioned below. But, if you want to know further about how to treat a husband in Islam, the following information will surely help you.
Among all the rights of a husband in Islam, this is the first and foremost one. This obedience part is because of taking care of her, fulfilling her financial needs, acting as a guardian for her, protecting her from all sorts of hassles, etc. other reasons.
Allah SWT set men in charge of women – “Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, because Allah has made one of them to excel the other, and because they spend (to support them) from their means” [al-Nisaa’ 4:34]
So, by obeying husbands, wives are actually obeying the command of Allah SWT.
Worth mentioning that, obedience is one of those exclusive acts by which wives can win the hearts of their husbands. This is the key to your husband’s heart. Beauty will fade, sexual urge will decrease, but obedience will last as long as both spouses are alive.
If you ask anyone to give you advice for ways to make marriage life better, this would be the topmost advice you will get from everyone.
2. Responding to the Husband
One of the primary goals of marriage is to enjoy each other physically. You, as a wife, should make yourself available whenever your husband asks you to have intimacy with him. As long as you are physically fit and you are not on your period, you shouldn’t reject him to have intercourse.
If a wife refuses her husband to have intercourse without any valid reasons, then it will be a major sin.
Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said “When a man calls his wife to his bed and she refuses, and he went to sleep angry with her, the angels will curse her until morning.” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 3065; Muslim, 1436)
However, if the wife is sick, on her period, or performing obligatory fasting, then she isn’t obliged to respond to her husband. If her husband insists, it will be a sinful act for him.
A lot of women, without any valid reason, refuse their husbands to have intercourse. Be it for mode swing or any dispute, if the husband is refused, then the curse of the angles is on the wife.
Women might get offended by it. But when you consider it as a responsibility, it becomes clear. If the husband doesn’t provide financial support for the wife just because of a dispute among them, then it will also be considered a sinful act. Both have to perform their responsibilities to live peacefully.
One of the wisdom behind this strict rule is that men have to go outside for their jobs, businesses, and other means of making halal income. So, it can happen that he is aroused by a stranger woman. Sooner or later, if he has intercourse with his wife, the chances of falling for the other woman will be highly decreased.
Islam also doesn’t permit wives to perform voluntary fasting without the permission of their husbands. Even though fasting itself is an act of virtue, it’s linked to the husband’s permission. Falling in love with someone else, and engaging in a haram relationship is more harmful than breaking the fast. Therefore, it goes in the favor of men.
3. Not Allowing Anyone to Enter into the House without Husband’s Permission
One of the rights of husband over wife in Islam is that she must not let anyone enter into the house without the permission of her husband. If her husband dislikes a particular person, and tells her not to let that person enter, she must obey this as well.
There’s a hadith in both Bukhaari and Muslim that the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “It is not permitted for a woman to fast when her husband is present without his permission, or to admit anyone into his house without his permission. And whatever she spends (in charity) of his wealth without his consent, ….” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 4899; Muslim, 1026)
In another hadith narrated by Muslim, Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, “Fear Allah concerning women! Verily you have taken them on the security of Allah, and intercourse with them has been made lawful unto you by words of Allah. You too have rights over them, and that they should not allow anyone to sit on your bed [i.e., not let them into the house] whom you do not like. But if they do that, you can chastise them but not severely. Their rights upon you are that you should provide them with food and clothing in a fitting manner” (Narrated by Muslim, 1218)
So, the matter here is pretty self-explanatory. Whether the husband fears fitnah regarding any person that the person might corrupt the mind of his wife, or for any other valid reason, if the husband restricts someone’s entrance, the wife should obey this, and not let that person make it inside the house.
4. Taking Permission from the Husband for Going Out of the House
According to Shaafa’i and Hanbali scholars, a wife cannot even go and visit her sick father without the permission of her husband. He has the right to not let her go.
As obeying the husband is obligatory, if the husband doesn’t allow his wife to go out for any non-obligatory matter, she must not go there. Because the obligatory command is superior to the non-obligatory one.
5. Discipling Her
“O you who believe! Ward off yourselves and your families against a Fire (Hell) whose fuel is men and stones” [al-Tahreem 66:6]
As the husband is in charge of his wife, he has the right to discipline her if he notices that she is committing any haram thing. The same goes for the commands of the husband that are obligatory for the wife to obey. If the husband fails to make her obey him, then the husband gets permission to separate the bed and hit her to some extent.
Allah SWT says in the Quran “As to those women on whose part you see ill‑conduct, admonish them (first), (next) refuse to share their beds, (and last) beat them (lightly, if it is useful)” [al-Nisaa’ 4:34]
For this verse, Hanafi scholars mentioned three situations where a husband can beat his wife to discipline her –
- When the husband wants her to adore herself, she refuses to do so.
- When he calls her to the bed, she refuses when she is taahirah and without any valid reason.
- When the wife goes out of the housing without the permission of her husband.
Worth mentioning that this strict command of Shari’a is for protecting the wife from doing anything haram. And for the beating part, it should not be too aggressive or hard to make marks of beating and he cannot hit her on her face.
6. Treating in a Good Manner
Treating your husband in a good and respectful manner is another right he has over you. Your husband provides you with worldly and financial matters. So, if you don’t treat her well, it will not make him feel good about the marriage.
Allah SWT says in the Quran “And they (women) have rights (over their husbands as regards living expenses) similar (to those of their husbands) over them (as regards obedience and respect) to what is reasonable” [al-Baqarah 2:228]
As husbands also have to treat their wives in a proper and respectful manner, obviously wives have to do the same. After all, without respect and good manners, a marriage contract cannot last longer. Both parties have to fear Allah concerning each other and treat each other with love, affection, as well as attention.
If you are to know more on how to gain more love from your husband, this article will help you to know the insights.
7. Taking Care of the House
As the husband tackles the outside world, the wife is in charge of the house when he’s away. A wife doesn’t have any responsibility to financially support the family. One of her responsibilities is to take care of the house. It can be through a maidservant or herself (if they are not capable of paying someone else for it).
However, the husband should also help her do regular things at home, it can be cleaning, cooking, or anything else.
8. Protecting the Wealth of Husband
A husband might leave money and everything in charge of his wife, and she should be responsible for these things as well. Protecting the wealth of the husband is really important in marriage.
Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said in a hadith “It is not permitted for a woman to fast when her husband is present without his permission, or to admit anyone into his house without his permission. And whatever she spends (in charity) of his wealth without his consent.” [Bukhaari, 4899; Muslim, 1026]
What does the Quran say about husband rights?
According to the Quran, husband’s rights to his wife in Islam are obedience, enjoying his wife physically when she is taahir, to not allowing individuals to enter into the house that he dislikes, disciplining and preventing her from doing anything haram, protecting his wealth, taking care of the house and children, etc. over his wife.
What is a husband’s duty to his wife?
The husband has to fulfill the financial rights, accommodations, non-financial rights, and treat her with love and respect, etc. rights to his wife. Among all, providing financial support is the primary husband’s role in Islam.
How should a wife treat her husband?
A wife should be obedient towards the husband as long as he doesn’t tell to do anything haram. Also, make her available when the husband demands, guard her chastity, protect the wealth, raise children, and act responsibly for household matters.
Does Islam allow husbands to beat their wives?
Husbands can beat wives for some specific reasons. But the beating should not be too hard that it leaves any sign or mark on the skin and should not be on the face. Usually, if the husband finds her disobedient, doing haram things, then the shaari’a permits taking such actions to bring her back from those matters.
Marriage life becomes more pleasing and enjoyable when both the husband and wife take care of the rights of each other. After knowing Husband rights in Islam, you as a wife should try to fulfill those rights and please both your husband, and most importantly Allah SWT.