Polygany, A Test and Blessing from Allah

With the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful, the Bestower of Mercy

“Who is he that will lend to Allah a goodly loan so that He may multiply it to him many times? And it is Allah that decreases or increases (your provisions), and unto Him you shall return”. (Al-Baqarah, 2:245)

Narrated Abu Musa (radhi-allaahu ‘anhu): The Prophet (sallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said, “A faithful believer to a faithful believer is like the bricks of a wall, enforcing each other.” While saying that the Prophet (sallahu alayhi wa sallam) clasped his hands, by interlacing his fingers.  (Bukhaari vol. 1, hadith # 468)

The first advice that I was given thirteen years ago regarding polygyny was given to me by an elder sister who had been in polygyny with two co-wives. She only said to me,

“Polygyny is not easy, you are going to have to have patience.”

This I found to be true, I would like to share with you the blessing Allah bestowed upon me thirteen years ago.

***

At first I didn’t know how to react to my co-wife, we lived in the same apartment building, so I knew that we had to see each other. My first week there I made it a point to give her warm salaams and begin a cordial converstion with her. The first meeting of ours seemed as if we both were nervous, both not knowing what to expect from each other. It went well, we spoke briefly, alhamduillah, we broke the ice.

Mind you in the eight years that we were co wives the first couple of years we really got to know each other and of course we both had our jealousies and sometimes misunderstandings. We did not try and force ourselves upon each other, but when either one of us needed a ride we helped each other, our husband took us places together, we studied Arabic together, we did functions for the masjid together, we went to the slaughter house for the Aqiqah of our children together and we were pregnant three times at the same time together. We began the practice during the month of Ramadhaan to alternate weekends for iftaars to one another homes.

Our children played together, studied together and worked together. Some weekends my children would go to her home and some weekends her children would come to mine. Our relationship grew out of mutual respect. We even opened a business together. I must say that when she and I did talk, she spoke of fearing Allaah and issues of the deen mainly. Of course we also talked of womanly issues such as sewing, cooking, the children. We both admitted that polygyny was hard at first, most things foreign to someone is. I remember one talk we had, it was about fearing Allaah and knowing that Allaah tests us with things. We realised that whatever went on in our homes did not need to be broadcast to the community and we tried to curb the phone calls being made to us with useless speech.

Although we are no longer co-wives I still love her very much for Allaah’s sake, Allah gave me a good friend. I’ve noticed when trials have happened in my home I have called her first on the phone to talk and to sometimes cry, even now. What at first seemed hard Allah made easy going, Alhamduillah.

About four years ago I was called to wash a body of a sister,  she had a co-wife. Her co-wife assisted in washing and preparing her body, to see the pain on her face is something that I will never forget. She too loved her co-wife and Allaah had called her co-wife back. The sister attended to her deceased co-wife’s Janaazah to make sure things were done as proper as could be. She seemed very serious about this, she loved her departed sister.

Here is the reality, we were placed upon this earth to worship Allaah, alone. We are going to have trials and we must call on Allaah to help us with them. You sisters that feel anger and jealousy, think more about the grave, think more about your meeting with Allaah, ask youself, is harboring ill feelings worth wasting precious time that could be spent on good deeds to try and please Allah. This is a reality, we all must die, who is the first to say that they are ready and that they don’t have anything to worry about? Do we really have time to spare on anything other than worshipping and trying to please Allaah? And if polygyny is in the Qadr for you then accept it, deal with it. Read about how the Mothers of the Believers dealt with it. Read about how the Sahaabiyaat dealt with it. Turn to the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of our Prophet (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) to deal with it. Throw your hands up in sincere du’a and ask Allaah to help you to deal with it, for sure Allaah, subhaanahu wa ta’aala, is the best of Planners. He knows what we do not know and he knows what is best for us.

May Allaah Subhana wa ta’ala bless us with good in this world and in the next, and may he save us from the hellfire and the torment of the grave, aameen.

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