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The Dues of the Husband

Introduction
There are a group of dues which The Most High Allah gave to the husband, so that he will carry out his role by means of them. The divine doctrine confirms the necessity of considering these dues and of committing to them; it is even related that Allah’s prophet (Allah’s prayers and peace bestowed upon him and his Household) said, «The one, among all the people, who has the greatest due on the wife is her husband; and the one, among all the people, who has the greatest due on the man is his mother.»1

What Are the Dues of the Husband?

Here, we are going to refer in detail to each one of the dues of the husband.

1- The Due of Sexual Enjoyment
The husband has the due of the sexual intercourse with his wife. The wife must comply with the desire of the husband to get his natural and religious due unless there is a certain religious prevention, such as the wife’s being in the menstruation period or in post pregnancy period when it is religiously forbidden that the husband and the wife undergo the complete sexual process whereas all the other sexual enjoyments rather than the intercourse are permissible.2

In one narrative, it is related that one woman went to Allah’s prophet (Allah’s prayers and peace bestowed upon him and his Household) and asked him, «O Allah’s prophet! What is the husband’s due on the wife?» He (Allah’s prayers and peace bestowed upon him and his Household) answered her, «It is to obey him and not to renounce allegiance to him; not to give any alms from his house without his permission; not fast to a desirable fast without his permission; and not to prevent him from having sexual intercourse with her even if [he asks for it] over a saddle.»3

To be concluded, the wife must be completely ready to comply with her husband’s sexual desires, so that she will provide him with the immunity he is looking for in this point.

* Beautifying Herself for Him
By this, it is meant that her husband should see her always in a form which pleases him and attracts him to her by means of putting on the clothes which he likes, putting the perfumes which he finds amiable, and the like from the issues which the wife knows that they present her beautifully in front of her husband’s eyes.

It is related that Imam Al-Sadik (Allah’s peace bestowed upon him) said, «The wife can not, as regards the relationship between her and her husband, do without three characteristics: She must up keep herself from every abomination, so that his heart will be at ease with her in weal and in woe. She must also attend to him, so that this will plead for her if she does something wrong. And she must show love to him through being fascinating and comely looking in his eye.»4

Problems Related to the Due of Sexual Enjoyment

The husband must pay attention to another important issue: It is that the fulfillment of the sexual need and the reaching of the state of sexual satisfaction is not restricted to him only; the wife has the due of reaching the state he reaches because that one of them fulfills his need without the other doing so may result in a lot of problems.

Both the husband and the wife must, each by his/ her own way, attempt at solving this problem. In case the wife is the one, as it is usual, who does not reach the state of sexual satisfaction, this is usually due to that she is shy in her relationship with the husband; then, she contents herself with her husband’s fulfillment of his need from her even if she has started a relation without completely fulfilling her own desire. Such an error has its negative influence on the psychology of the wife; reflects on her practical performance; and adds to her feeling that she is wronged with him and that he gets what he wants whereas she gets nothing in return.

Then, how can the husband and the wife solve this problem?

The successful relationship is not the one in which the woman complies with the needs of the man only; it is the one in which the man also complies with the needs of the woman. As the woman complies with her husband with respect to what he asks for, so that he will fulfill his desire, he must comply with her with respect to what she asks for, so that she will fulfill her desire as well. It is related in one narrative that The Prince of the Believers (Allah’s peace bestowed upon him) said, «When any one of you wants to have a sexual intercourse with his wife, let him not hurry her because women have needs.»5

2- The Due of Giving the Wife the Permission to Get Out of the House
The second due for the husband is to give his wife the permission in case she wants to get out of the house because it is not permissible for the wife to get out of the house without her husband’s permission.

The due of giving the wife the permission to get out of the house is constant for the husband i.e. in case the woman conditions on her husband in the marriage contract that it is not his due to prevent her from getting out of the house, then the condition is considered to be abolished yet the contract is still correct.6

It is related in one narrative that The Noblest Prophet (Allah’s prayers and peace bestowed upon him and his Household) said, «…and not to get out of her house without his permission: In case she gets out without his permission, the angels of the sky and the angels of the earth and the angels of wrath and the angels of mercy will be cursing her till she gets back to her house.»7

The due of giving the wife the permission to get out of the house is a central point in the authorities of the man. Moreover, not getting out of the house has to do with the administrative issue and with the organization of the family.

Some women may ask, «Is not this an injustice committed against the woman- We seek refuge with Allah?» In fact, when we recognize that this due is a part of the administrative circle of the man, then it becomes normal and fair. It is considered so also when the man has received an education with which he fears The Most High Allah, takes into consideration the humanity of his partner, is cognitive in his administration so that getting out does not turn to be an impediment, as long as it has to do with him, as regards giving the permission and, as long as it has to do with her, as regards repeating it in a manner which wastes the nature of the martial life.

The authorities which Islam gives to the husband are actually a criterion telling the wife, «Consider your condition well, for it is impermissible that you remain out of the house without permission.» This is so because the husband gets vexed when he finds his wife out of the house most of the time and when she slights her presence in the house; this is in fact in opposition to the characteristics of the sound familial life. Henceforth, the wife must take the following measures.

At first, she must take cautiousness as regards choosing the times of getting out of the house, so that they will not be contradictory with the desires of the husband or with the other familial duties.

Secondly, she must take into consideration that she does not have a religious due to get out of the house without her husband’s permission. Once she considers this, she will feel content because as long as it is not her religious due, she will accept this issue in an act of commitment to the divine laws.

On the other hand, the husband should, from the moral and human aspects, consider her own desires and privacies and does not be selfish and stern to the extent of hurting her feelings; he must give her a reasonable freedom and be somehow flexible in this issue. The problem, therefore, is not due to the administrative organization and criterion; it is due to the performance and practice which are the points actually in need to be reviewed and followed up because they are what cause troubles to the woman most of the time.

3- The Due of the Settlement of the Administrative Issues in the Family
As an indirect result of the dutifulness of the expense with which the husband is assigned comes the third due of the husband which is the due of the settlement of the issues which have to do with the financial administration of the house. When it is demonstrated that spending on the family is from the duties of the husband, then it is natural that he does not spend but on what he is convinced of and on what he deems to be for the welfare of the family.

The settlement of the affairs in the family has in fact a central relationship to the expense which is mainly manifested in the financial affair. Still, it may apply to other affairs like the educational issue and other issues in case they are related to the issue of expense. In case the husband and the wife disagree concerning the educational issues, like the husband’s wish to admit the children to a specific school whereas the wife wishes to admit them to another school, then the settlement at the end is to the husband because he is going to pay the money for any school of them since Islam assigned him with the responsibility of educating and spending on the children. It is related that Allah’s prophet (Allah’s prayers and peace bestowed upon him and his Household) said, «…and not to give anything without his permission. If she does so, she is going to bear the sin while he is going to be granted the reward…»8

The Limits of the Dutifulness of Obedience

Out of the frame of this circle i.e. the circle of the expense of the husband and his due of sexual enjoyment, the husband does not have the due to be obeyed: In case he asks his wife to commit something forbidden, then it is not permissible that she obeys him in this issue.

The husband has the due of decision as regards the common issues which are in need for a decision. Yet as regards the personal conducts- such as: disposing of her own money, talking in a specific manner, performing a particular action, refusing to possess a certain thing, or any other point that does not have to do with the due of sexual enjoyment or the due of giving the permission of getting out of the house- they are considered to be her own business as regards of which he does not have the due to impose anything on her.

As regards this point, Imam Al-Khomeini (May his secret be sacred) said, «It is not of recalcitrance that she does not obey him as regards what is not dutiful on her. In case she does not do the house services and needs which are not related to the due of sexual enjoyment, like sweeping, sewing, cooking, or the like even bringing him water and sweeping the bed, then she has not done recalcitrance.»9 This is so because the service of the house and what is related to that are not dutiful on her.

1- List the dues of the husband which the wife must take into consideration?
2- What are the limits of the dutifulness of the wife’s obedience to her husband?
3- Is the due of the husband of giving the wife the permission to get out of the house considered to be an injustice committed against the wife? Why?
4- On what basis do we deduce that the conflicting issues concerning the financial administration of the house must be settled by the husband?
5- List the etiquettes of the wife’s relationship with her husband.


1- Meezan Al-Hekma [The Standard of Sagacity]/ Part Two/ Page 1184
2- Tahreer Al-Waseela [Editing the Means]/ Imam Al-Khomeini (May his secret be sacred)/ Dar Al-Kotob Al-Ilmeeya [The House of the Scientific Books]/ Part One/ Page 53
3- Al-Sihah/ Al-Jawahri/ Dar Al-Ilm Lil Malayeen [The House of the
4- Meezan Al-Hekma [The Standard of Sagacity]/ Mohammadi Al-Rishahri/ Part Two/ Page 1185
5- Wasael Al-Sheeaa [The Means of the Shiite]/ Part Thirty/ Page 118
6- Tahreer Al-Waseela [Editing the Means]/ Imam Al-Khomeini (May his secret be sacred)/ Part Two/ Page 302
7- Makrem Al-Akhlaq [The Loftiest Morals]/ Sheikh Al-Tobrossi/ Page 214
8- Al-Kafi [The Sufficient]/ Page 508
9- Tahreer Al-Waseela [Editing the Means]/ Part Two/ Page 305

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