Dear Ms/Mr Anonymous

Your question raised many issues such as: a husband who abused his wife; a husband who failed to communicate; a wife who went to see someone else and whether the wife can claim mut’ah. It also raises an issue who is responsible for the breakup of the marriage..

I am aware of some irresponsible men who had subjected their wives to physical abuse.

My dear gentlemen, Please be reminded that you are being entrusted with an “amanah” to treat your wives, children and parents, with love, understanding, care and respect. Your love and respect must also be extended to your teachers, neighbours and all of Allah’s creations around you.

Please also bear in mind that your wives and children may drag you to courts for your bad conduct. You are also answerable in the Court of Allah for abusing or mistreating your wives and/or children.

Rasulullah s.a.w had never taught his followers to abuse their children and wives.

As regards husbands who do not share with their wives the amount of savings they had and their personal identification numbers (pin numbers) are not matters which require serious attention. What is important is that  husbands must maintain their families adequately within their means.

Few husbands do not want to offend their wives so they refused to share their income and their bank book balance because there are cases where wives discourage their husbands from giving financial support to their husbands’ parents. A few wives will say that they are the responsibilities of the husbands’ other siblings to contribute to their husbands’ parents. However if these wives have no objections to their husbands contributing towards their(husbands’) parents, they(the wives) will suggest that the contribution should be minimal because their husbands have many children to feed, school fees to pay, housing loan to be serviced etc. But the wives of the husbands’ siblings will also mount the same argument to the other siblings. So everyone will try to shift the responsibilities to others. So to avoid these arguments/misunderstandings between the spouses, the husbands will not divulge information on their income received and savings to their wives.

With regard to the wife in question who went to see someone to confide in or “curahkan hati”, the question that follows is, why isn’t the services of a professional counsellor sought to solve her problem?

Who is responsible for the breakup of the marriage?

In a case like this, the wife is the best person to know whether she should pursue her mut’ah claim or not.

The Syariah Court of Singapore’s attitude is that so long as a wife is divorced, she is entitled to mut’ah payment irrespective of who is responsible for the breakup of the marriage.

However, a good and obedient wife with adequate religious knowledge and upbringing would have her own predisposition on halal and haram. It is a question of whether she want to believe and put into practice of her own predisposition on the matter or she is relying on the standards imposed by someone.

A wife might argue that since the Court awarded the mut’ah payment, it should be “halal’. I beg to differ. She should not hide behind the Court Order.

Let us take for an example of a married couple, one of them a Muslim, registered their marriage in the ROM instead of ROMM. They are husband and wife in the eyes of Singapore civil law: could enjoy all privileges like applying for an HDB flat etc, but it is regretted that in the eyes of Islamic law they are not husband and wife. An interested party may take an action in court to challenge the validity of the marriage but the court will rule that the marriage is valid. But the Muslim spouse cannot hide behind this Court Order on the issues of Islamic law of inheritance, khalwat, legitimacy of children etc.

Hence if the wife in question believes that it is ‘halal’ to pursue the mut’ah claim, then proceed with it. However if her conscience dictates that she should not claim, then drop it.

The wife with her naked eye would have the impression that she had lost a handsome five figure sum for not filing the award of mut’ah. Had she forwarded her claim, she would have been able to fleece a large amount of monies from her husband and she would be laughing all the way to the bank.

Her laughs to the bank shall soon turn into disaster if the monies that she would not have been entitled to were used to feed her children or the children of her newfound husband. Because Allah had ordained that consume only those that are “halal and good.” Our Muslim scholars had always warned us of the consequences of feeding our children with non-halal sources. We do not want our offsprings to be problematic and disobedient children as a consequence of being fed with sources which are not halal and who will likely to be involved in crimes like drug abuse, rioting, theft and “tailong” activities which are the latest trend. Then it is too late to regret and say, “Ibu malu dengan kelakuan engkau orang yang macam ‘whatever’ ……….”