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Question: Frustrated Husband with Wife Undermining His Role

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My wife keeps undermining my authority infront of our kids, no matter how many time I tell her I don’t like that she keeps doing it!! I’m very frustrated and don’t know what to do, any advice?

There’s likely two issues at play here: one could be an insecurity about who she is as a mother. This would mean she feels the need to always give her two sense, or play the hero for her children. It could also mean she feels the need to protect them from anything she feels is negative and will make them sad. That also is an insecure mother, as she yearns their approval/attention/love by feeling it necessary to always keep them satisfied. Another issue that might be looming is an underlying resentment she holds towards you. If there is/are issues that bother her in your relationship, she may feel that she can pacify that pain/disappointment by interfering with your relationship with yoru children. This is likely an subconscious action, but through resentment, she also lacks respect, and with a lack of respect she will openly question your decisions without thinking of how it makes you feel.

It is probably best that you deal with the root, since the surface issue doesn’t change when you ask her to stop doing that.  The best way to deal with a woman is gently, and no defensively – this is extremely, extremely hard. The male ego is a fragile delicate thing. But if you want to see a change you’ll have to brace yourself for any negativity, anger, resentment she may have, allow her to express it, then apologize.  It doesn’t mean she’s right, it means you want to start again and work towards establishing a stronger home. So for the sake of Allah, keep your heart clear, your mind strong, and make amends.  It’s the first step to creating respect between you both. Take note of her complaints, and what you see as truth try to adjust yourself accordingly (without making a point of telling her).

This will eventually create a safe place between you both to communicate, so she doesn’t feel attacked nor do you. With that said, your authority will be better respected, because she already knows it bothers you, she will change her ways, once she see you change yours.

We are funny creatures like that – but someone has to start.  Get the reward of good intention and be the first to do it. May Allah grant you success, and make your wife and children a coolness and comfort to your heart, Ameen.

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