In my short (some may say long) lifetime, I’ve been witness to and encountered many cases of domestic abuse and violence…among Muslims! Many sisters have emailed me and joined our forums over the years whose husbands have been verbally, emotionally and/or physically abusive towards them. In real life also, from the time of MSA all the way up until now, there have been a number of cases. In fact, many of these “cases” are even well known on the d/l within the Muslim community. Some cases have resulted in divorce, some have not.
Allow me please to say, WTH!? What on earth gives these Muslim men the idea that any kind of abuse is OK? That it’s OK to call their wife names, to abuse her emotionally, dominate her, not care about her, ignore her wishes and contributions, not help her in anything and even to beat her. Where in our glorious history of our Prophet (saw) did he ever lay a hand on his wives? Where did he ever call them names, or abuse them in any way? Why do these men think it’s OK? A Deen where even a mighty Prophet moved his armies in order to save a tiny ant and her colony; where we are not even allowed to hurt an animal out of injustice! I just can’t understand it.
Those who take a verse or two out of the Quran and twist it in order to justify this type of behavior are even worse. (Specifically the daraba and qawwamuna verses) Where did the normative teachings of Islam go? All the other thousands of verses and Hadith and practice of the companions and righteous throughout the ages? These same people complain that non-Muslims take verses out of context and twist them to suit their needs. Are you not twisting the words of Allah, I mean WHERE WHERE does anything give you support that it’s OK to act like that. It is your twisted interpretation and no one elses.
We all know these men will be responsible in front of Allah. They know what they are doing and it feeds into their psychoses. But what about us? Why is this in any tiny, blind-eye even looking-the-other-way acceptable? Why is this not taught to our sons. In our weekend schools? In our Khutbahs? Do we really want to have families of abusers? Because this behavior is learned generationally. Won’t that be great, to have generations of wife-beating Muslim families!
I remember a long time ago telling someone about some Rishta questions people should ask and the person said ‘why are you doing so much research it’s not like your husband is going to beat you’. Well, duh. As if it never happens among Muslims. I know better. And now we all know better with well publicized cases like Asiya Zubair. For every Asiya there are hundreds more in the US and thousands across the Muslim world. This is unacceptable. We are Muslims and our deen is Islam. Let’s live up to it.
Muslim Men Against Domestic Violence: http://www.mmada.org/
Peaceful Families Project: Advocating Against Domestic Violence Among Muslims: http://www.peacefulfamilies.org/
Update: JazakiAllahu khairan to Sr. Mahwish for collecting these.
Here is a list of some shelters/agencies working with Muslim women throughout the country.
5115 Liberty Heights Ave,
Baltimore, MD 21207
Muslimat Al-Nisaa, originally organized in 1987, is a non-profit organization established to provide culturally sensitive health, education and social services to Muslim community women and children. In 2005, co-founders Asma Hanif and Dr Maryam Funches, recognized the need to add a shelter program to the original organizational objectives.
4753 N. Broadway Suite 502
Chicago, IL 60640
Apna Ghar is a domestic violence shelter serving primarily Asian women and children, and was the first Asian shelter of its kind in the Mid-Western United States. Apna Ghar takes its name from a Hindi-Urdu phrase meaning "Our Home", and since January 1990 has served over 3800 domestic violence clients.
Asian/Pacific Islander Domestic Violence Resource Project
P.O. Box 14268
Washington, DC 20044
(202) 364-4630 email@example.com
We are a diverse group of volunteers and staff who are committed to ending domestic violence and its effects. We have expertise in a range of areas including education, law, and public health and we draw on the experiences and cultural backgrounds of our members of Asian/Pacific Islander descent.
Baitul Salaam – Atlanta
P.O. Box 11041
Atlanta, GA 30310
(404) 608-8649 firstname.lastname@example.org http://baitulsalaam.net
We are a non-profit organization consisting of a variety of individuals and businesses in the fight together to end spousal abuse worldwide. Our services include: Counseling and support services, Battered women's shelter, Temporary financial assistance, Fundraising services, and Employment assistance
355 Wood Dale Rd
Wood Dale, IL 60191
630-860-9122 24-hour Emergency Crisis Line
Hamdrad Center provides culturally tailored, multilingual services to domestic violence victims and abusers since 1993. A team of dedicated volunteers has made it possible to establish a fully licensed shelter and a 24 hour Crisis Hotline, and to provide individual and family counseling to families in need.
HOMS – Housing Outreach for Muslim Sisters
P.O. Box 152611
Arlington, TX 76015
H.O.M.S. is a facility designed for Muslim women and their children who are in need of temporary housing/shelter due to family or financial problems.
ISSA – Islamic Social Services Association of USA & Canada
4202 Roblin Blvd
(204) 889-7451 phone
(204) 896-1694 email@example.com@hotmail.comwww.issaservices.com
ISSA is a unique organization since it is not a social service provider, but rather is an organization that serves as a network for addressing the social service concerns Muslims have. ISSA aims to provide support to social service providers through education, training, services and advocacy.
ISTABA is a non-profit full time institute which offers various services to the community. ISTABA also offers the following:
Food items are provided to needy Muslims and Non Muslims; Open Saturdays 11:00 am - 2:00 pm
Red Crescent Medical Clinic is open to Muslims and
Non Muslims and is free for the uninsured. Open Tuesday - Saturday 10:30 am - 5:30 pmwww.istaba.org/Services.htm
Muslim Community Center For Human Services
M. Basheer Ahmed, M.D.
Chairman MCC for Human Services
P.O. Box 152658
Arlington, TX firstname.lastname@example.org
Muslim Community Center For Human Services offers the following services to the victims of domestic violence. 24-hour helpline 817-589-9165 ;Counseling service for couples ;and/or individuals ;Computer training program for victims of domestic violence ;Arrangements with local shelters if needed ;Educational programs for prevention of domestic violence ;Educational material is also provided
Muslim Women's Help Network
87-91 144th Street
Jamaica, NY 11435
Tel.: (718) 523-5100
Fax: (718) email@example.com
The mission of the Muslim Women's Help Network is to promote family life in accordance with the Qur'an and Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad (saw), emphasizing the protection and maintenance of women and children as the foundation for a productive community life.
Muslim Women's Network
PO Box 14023
Columbus, OH 43214
The Muslim Women's Network exists to, insha Allah, provide Islamically-trained workers to build stronger families by: Providing counseling and/or mediation services to the community; Introducing and re-connecting women to their community; Helping women to help themselves; Being a catalyst for social change. In the Muslim Women's Network & Community Services we hope, insha Allah, to support sisters in many ways but to focus our services toward the following core groups: widows, the displaced, the disenfranchised and the abused of our community.
P.O. Box 14014
Berkeley, CA 94712
Narika was founded in 1992 to address the problem of domestic violence in the South Asian community. Embracing the notion of women's empowerment, Narika set out to address the unmet needs of abused South Asian women by providing advocacy, support, information, and referrals within a culturally sensitive model. We serve women who trace their origins to Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Pakistan,
Sri Lanka and diasporic communities such as Fiji and the Caribbean.
P.O. Box 1403
Alomita, CA 93717
Here are some additional links:http://www.karamah.org/domestic_violence.htm
(Sakhi for South Asian Women, New York)http://www.chayaseattle.org/
(Turning Point, New York)