Fatwa ID: 02135
Answered by Mufti Abdullah al-Ma’mun
If a mother has bad attitude towards her son and daughter-in-law and gives hard tension for both especially for her son then what should the son do?
You haven’t included any details in your question as to how your mother (in-law) is giving you 'hard tension' and I don’t know the nature and the severity of her 'bad attitude' towards you, it may be possible that her behaviour is justified and you don’t know it. Hence I will try to address the responsibilities of each party which may help in making things easier in your household.
Your responsibility (As the son)
Islam has given rights to the parents, particularly the mother more than it has given to any other family member. In the Qur'an Allah Ta'aala has mentioned the rights of the parents immediately after mentioning his own rights. This shows the importance of serving the parents and also who deserves 'priority'.
(see al-Baqarah 02:83, al-Nisaa 04:36, al-Isra 17:23)
With regards to the obedience of the parents, it is incumbent upon the child to obey the commands of his parents at all times. The only exception is if the parent’s commandment goes against the teachings of Allah Ta'aala and his messenger Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam, in which case he must refuse respectfully.
(see Luqman 31:15)
Therefore as the son it is your responsibility to obey your mother’s commands, serve her, do good to her and overlook her mistakes.
The mother (in-law)
The relationship between the mother, son and the daughter in law should be a balanced one. Wherever necessary she (the mother) should give good advice with wisdom based on her own experiences rather than dictate.
(see al-An'aam 06:152)
Ultimately, she should leave the final decisions to be taken by her son and his wife. She must not under any circumstance interfere in their private lives. If any problem arises, she must deal with them wisely in a just and unbiased manner.
The daughter in law
It is her duty to maintain the peace and deal with matters with kindness, gentleness and patience. If at any time the mother in law tries to interfere, she and her husband must explain to her in a polite and respectful manner that it is inappropriate for her to intervene in their private domestic affairs. However, care must be taken at all times that the mother (in law) is not disrespected in any way.
If these few points are properly observed, In-Sha-Allah things will change for the better. One must always remember that Islam teaches us to 'fulfil' others rights, not 'demand' our own. I hope I have addressed your concerns.
Only Allah Knows Best
Written by Mufti Abdullah al-Ma’mun
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham.