Fatwa ID: 03310
Answered by: Alimah Nasima Umm Hamza
Please help me I am separated from my husband for over 2 and a half years. I want a divorce but every time I ask he avoids the topic. I have a son with him. When I met him he was a Christian a converted but while being married he never tried to be a Muslim he wouldn't go to most even on big nights or even for eid. In front of family and friends, he would pretend like he’s fasting but never used to. He also started hiding and drinking and was emotionally abusive.
He used to swear at me and called me very bad names out in public and at home. I did everything I could to make the marriage work which he didn’t appreciate. He hasn’t been working but tired to arrange money with odd jobs. I worked and he used to take my money and go to the casino. When my son was born I left him as I didn’t want my son to pick up his bad habits. In the past 3 years, he visited his son 9 times he doesn’t help much financially and would make send like R200 or R300 once every 6 months. He does things for the child but mostly junk foods. Please help me as I really want a divorce I have no feelings for him and wish to move on with my life.
بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيْم
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
If your husband does not give you divorce and he is neither practising the obligations of Islam nor providing for you, then you can ask for khula’ whereby you return the dowry.
The Prophet (PBUH) permitted this as has been narrated in the Hadith.
Narrated Ibn `Abbas:
The wife of Thabit bin Qais came to the Prophet (ﷺ) and said, "O Allah's Messenger (ﷺ)! I do not blame Thabit for defects in his character or his religion, but I, being a Muslim, dislike to behave in a un-Islamic manner (if I remain with him)." On that Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) said, "Will you give back the garden which your husband has given you (as Mahr)?" She said, "Yes." Then the Prophet (ﷺ) said to Thabit, "O Thabit! Accept your garden, and divorce her once."
(Sahih Bukhari 5273)
If he does not co-operate then you can annul the marriage via a Shariah council.
In a nutshell, you do have a valid reason to take this further and annul the marriage. Yes, it is recommended that one stays in the marriage and tries to make things better but as you have mentioned in the question above, it is best one goes their separate ways.
Only Allah alone knows best.
Answered by Alimah Nasima Umm Hamza
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham