In Islam men are the guardians and maintainers of their wives. According to the Quran, Allah has declared, and it is not up to men, women or society to do otherwise. Husbands are the decision makers and the providers, however not just in regards to finances. The husband is also meant to take care of his wife's emotional and psychological needs as well.
Let us discuss a few of the husband's specific responsibilities towards his wife in eye of Sunnah and the Quran regarding a Muslim marriage:
- Husbands should be patient with their wives especially, if there is something they don't like about them.
- It is important for the husband to keep promises he made to his wife at the time of marriage.
- He cannot order her to do something which is against the religion. The prophet (peace be upon him) said, "No obedience is due to creatures in disobedience of Creator".
- Respecting and paying attention to his wife and her needs.
- The Prophet (peace be upon him) advised young men to marry, "because it cast down the gaze and up the genital". Therefore husband should not seek a sexual relationship other than their wives.
- Husbands should keep any secrets of his family to himself rather than going out and discussing with others.
- A good Muslim husband should trust his wife completely and listen to her advice whenever she chooses to give it.
- The prophet (peace be upon him) said that the best gift or charity (sadaqa) is that spent on one's wife. So be generous to your wife.
- If a husband can afford it, he should hire help for his wife for household chores, such as cooking, cleaning, etc.
- Husbands should never put their wives in a shameful position or talk about her with his friends or other men.
- In case of a disagreement do not rush for divorce but try to work out differences if possible. According to Holy Quran, "(after pronouncing the divorce) she must be retained in honor or released in kindness" (2:228).
- If something about the wife displeases the husband he should not dwell on it all the time, instead he should look for positive attributes and praise her for them.
- The husband should not keep away from his wife and keep her in a
state of anticipation, for a long period without her consent. Allah said
"Turn not away (from your wife) altogether, so as to leave her hanging.
If you come to a friendly understanding and practice self-restraint,
then Allah is Oft-Forgiving, and merciful" (4:129)