HusbandDepressionMarriageFriendship
I have been married for 7 years and my husband does not let me talk to my friends of any gender. He restricts me over everything and also doesn't trust me, which makes me feel isolated and, at times, I go into depression because of it. What should I do?
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Amina Inloes, Amina Inloes is originally from the US and has a PhD in Islamic Studies from the University of Exeter on Shi'a hadith. She is the program leader for the MA Islamic Studies program at the... Answer updated 4 months ago

I am sorry to hear about your situation. It is normal to re-evaluate how a marriage is going after 7 or 8 years and see if it is functioning well.

Life is (somewhat) about choices. If the marriage isn't working for you, Islamically speaking, the first step is to try to make it work (for instance, as mentioned, through communication or a marriage counselor, if he is willing). That said, it requires the interest and commitment of both people in a marriage for things to change.

If he isn't interested in changing, then you need to decide what you want for your own life and future, and whether to accept the situation as it is or to try to move on  (obviously, taking into account all factors, such as how the relationship is otherwise, financial matters, whether you have children and what you feel would be best for them, etc). While divorce is discouraged in Islam, and, statistically speaking, women tend to suffer more than men (financially and emotionally) after divorce, it is also not good to harm yourself or stunt your growth and potential if there is no greater good behind it.

This is ultimately a decision that you would have to make for yourself since no one is in your shoes and can fully understand your situation, especially if depression is a factor. 

I would suggest in any case - and I hope I am not overstepping my boundaries - that regardless of whether or not separation might be in the future, it is always healthy to have friends and associates who can be a safety net in a time of crisis. This is true both for yourself as an individual, but also for the family, as we never know what will happen - what if he were to suddenly be in a coma or something? If there is any way to make friendships, even online, it would be helpful not only psychologically but also on a practical level. 

(Indeed, in the current world situation, many of us are discovering the value of having a safety net.)

I would also point out as tactfully as possible that, oftentimes, when someone is extremely suspicious and untrusting, it is because they have things to hide, or else they have behaved questionably in the past. Otherwise, normal people are not usually extremely suspicious or untrusting. I am just putting that out there, and that may not at all be the case in your situation. It is just an observation about human psychology. 

Life sometimes doesn't have easy answers but prayer for guidance is also always a good start. 

Seyed Ali Shobayri, Seyed Ali Shobayri is of mixed Iranian and Scottish descent who found the path of the Ahlul Bayt (a) by his own research. He holds a BA in Islamic Studies from Middlesex University through the... Answered 4 months ago

Bismillah, 

Asalamu Alaykom, 

Trust is an important factor between spouses and without it, the relationship can become very damaged. Have you tried asking him why he doesn't trust you? If you haven't done anything for him to act this way then he could be overly paranoid based on his own insecurities.  Also he cannot unjustly control you such as preventing you from having believing female friends.

Try to be open with him and mention the damage this is doing. If you have already tried this or it doesn't work, try to get a trusted believer who can mediate or a trusted alim who is experienced in martial disputes to speak to you both or arrange a session. 

May Allah grant you success