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Emotional Communication Between Spouses

www.Islamweb.net 19/04/2012 Emotional communication is the key to happiness between the spouses. Marital life begins with strong, good emotions and warm feelings. In the course of time, these emotions may become apathetic and lose their warmth. This is the most dangerous problem in the marital life and would crack its edifice. The wife should pay great attention to this problem to overcome it and have continual incessant communication and renewing love. The first step to solve this problem is that each spouse should review his duties towards the other; perhaps the problem was aroused from that point. However, the marital life does not stop at this limit; it is a humane, not mechanical, relationship. The emotional bond between the spouses is a strong rope that is a cornerstone of the marital life. Emotions are mutual feelings between the spouses; therefore, the husband should be keen on making his wife feel that he loves her. She should also reciprocate these good feelings with him and continuously declare her love, sincerity and faithfulness. True emotions have a magical effect on the spouses life. They make the difficult easy, and turn a small house into a paradise in which the spouses and their children rejoice. The clever wife knows many ways to nourish these emotions, the easiest of which is a kind word. A wise wife makes her husband feel her love for him, regards commending him and gets him accustomed to hearing kind words from the first day of their marriage. These factors nourish the marital life and result in goodness and happiness. Love is a feeling and emotion that is inspired by kind words, mutual respect and exchanging words of love and compassion. The wifes bashfulness should not prevent her from exchanging with her husband tender words and sublime feelings. The husband should encourage her to do so through saying gentle words and expressing his sincere feelings towards her. They should compete in their love, seeking the happiness of this life and the reward of Allaah in the Hereafter. The wifes sensitivity may corrupt this warm relationship. Accordingly, she should be forgiving and overlook the slips of her husband. In doing so, she becomes great in the sight of her husband. Moreover, this leads him to be keen on avoiding these slips in the future. The wife should realize that she lives in a time where temptations are rampant and many women have abandoned modesty and do their best to expose their charms and beauty. The husbands eye might fall on one of these women and wish that his wife would be more beautiful than her in order to satisfy his desires through lawful means and attain the reward of Allaah The Almighty. Hence, the wife should be keen to always appear before her husband in neat, nice clothes, and be well-perfumed in order to satisfy his desires and help him enjoy her well. It is strange that some women do their utmost in adorning themselves and showing their beauty and charms when they are going out, but they do not do the half or even the quarter of such adornment and beautification while they are inside their homes with their husbands. It is not an Islamic practice for the woman to expose her charms before men outside her home and hide them in front of her husband. The wife should adorn herself for her husband as much as she can. When the Prophet was asked about the best woman, he said: The one who pleases him [the husband] when he looks at her. [Abu Daawood and Ibn Maajah] There are other significant matters that many wives may not heed, thinking that kind words and a good relationship are sufficient to attain happiness. However, the well-ordered, clean, and calm household in which the husband needs to find rest after the hardship of work and the well-prepared table of food are among the matters that the husband is concerned with. Also, falling short in fulfilling these matters results in the disturbance of the marital life. It is better for the wife to regard her relationship with the family of her husband as part of the relationship with her husband, as her good relationship with his family entails her good relationship with him. She should host them and regard this act as a way of showing her love to her husband. She should also encourage her husband to invite his

friends and brothers to eat food that she should prepare willingly and happily. Doing so, she implicitly says to her husband that she likes whom he likes and hates whom he hates. Moreover, she should be comforting to her husband and support him in the face of misfortunes. The women of the righteous predecessors are the best example in this regard to be followed. Anas said: One of the sons of Abu Talhah became sick and then died, and Abu Talhah at that time was not at home. When his wife saw that he was dead, she prepared him [i.e., she washed and shrouded the body of the child] and placed him somewhere in the house. When Abu Talhah came, he asked, How is the boy? She replied, The child is in a very quiet state, and I hope that he has rested. Abu Talhah thought that he had recovered. She served him dinner, prepared the bed for him, and he had sexual intercourse with her. In the morning, he performed Ghusl [ritual bathing], and when he intended to go out, she told him that his son had died. Abu Talhah offered the [morning] prayer with the Prophet and informed him of what happened to them. The Prophet said: May Allaah bless you concerning your night; [that is, may Allaah bless you with good offspring]. Allaah granted them a son [from that night], and nine of his offspring memorized the Quran. [Al-Bukhaari] The wife should speak to her husband at suitable times and know his conditions and what he encounters in his daily life. This act endears the wife to her husband and makes him feel his value and importance to her. Aaishah said, When the Messenger of Allaah had prayed the two Rakahs [Sunnah] of the dawn prayer, he would talk to me if I was awake; otherwise, he would lie down until the prayer was called. [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim] Understanding Between the Spouses Allaah The Almighty created people with different natures and dispositions: one of the spouses might like or hate what the other does not. Perhaps, there is a difference in the way of speaking, dressing, food preferences, ways to organize things at home, and time of sleeping; moreover, there may be a difference in the way each of them enjoys the other. The harmony between the different natural dispositions of the spouses can only be achieved through love that makes the spouses more flexible in dealing with each other. Hence, the spouses reach relative harmony through which neither of them would feel the degrading of his character or dignity. The wife and the husband should tolerate the different natural dispositions of the other, as they have both grown accustomed to these characteristics, and in a short while, each of them would know what pleases the other and do it in order to satisfy their partner. This is a stage on the way of harmony between them. The intelligent woman should know what best suits her husband concerning clothes, colors and proper wear for each occasion in order to maintain his prestige. She should pay attention to the food her husband eats, and she should know his favorite food and be keen on serving it. She should be keen on knowing the time of his meals and meet this time. She should serve him the food in the way he likes both in terms of preparation and the way it is served. The Muslim wife should wait for her husband until he returns from work even if he returns late. She should not sleep before making sure he has returned safely, receiving him well, preparing food for him, talking to him about things that please him, and keeping him company until he goes to bed. She should do her best to wake up early to wake him and her children up for Fajr prayer to start her and their day with goodness. Then, she should prepare breakfast for them, bid her husband farewell when he goes to work in a compassionate way, and advise him to earn lawful gains. Then, she should do her housework and make it convenient for a tranquil and peaceful home. Such things make a pleasant atmosphere at home for the family and encourage the husband to leave the club, caf or other places he might want to visit and instead return to his home. Indeed, such places are full of corruption that would destroy the marital life. The Working Wife

Sometimes the wife has to go out to work, whatever the reasons may be, but she should organize her life in a way that guarantees the stability of her home and the happiness of her husband so that he does not feel that she has gone far from him and that she neglects him or does not fulfill her duties as a wife. She should not be outside her home during the time he is there. She should do her best to work while he is at work and to be at home at the same time. Beauty, the Sexual Relationship and Emotional Communication The sexual relationship is one of mutual participation between the husband and wife. Some wives are shy and leave this issue totally to the husband. This is a misunderstanding of the mutual nature of this relation between the spouses. Many beautiful women may believe that they are able to make the sexual relationship successful. Consequently, they do not perform a positive role during sexual intercourse out of the wrong belief that their beauty alone can fulfill this matter perfectly. It should be known that the marital life and all of its aspects is an interaction between the spouses. Each of them should be positive in his or her interaction, either in abstract matters such as love and affection, or concrete matters such as the exchange of sexual enjoyment. The beauty of the woman is a relative matter in the sight of men. A man may like a blonde woman while another man inclines to the brunette or dark woman. Someone may like a short, heavier woman, while another might prefer a tall, slim woman, and so on. A womans beauty is not confined to her body; there is immaterial beauty which is characterized in the personality of the woman. The woman may be calm, prudent, staid, loving, satisfied, modest, lenient, cooperative, affectionate, and keen on pleasing her husband. The wife who has these traits is the one who possesses real beauty even if she is less beautiful than other women. She realizes that it is a wrong belief that only the beautiful woman is able to satisfy her husbands sexual desires. Rather, all women could do so and make sexual intercourse successful through foreplay, fondling, continuous flirtation and tender words of love. Then, the wife would enjoy her husband and let her husband enjoy her in the lawful way. No Room for Despair Between the Spouses Sexual desire is like any other human desire and is not connected to a certain age, because it is a part of the physical structure of a human. Hence, the wife should know that her own or her husbands sexual desire does not stop at the age of menopause. If the woman is healthy and does not suffer from physical or psychological diseases, then she can have sexual intercourse even if she is old. It is true that sexual desire decreases as well as sexual ability when the person becomes older; but it always remains and fulfills its function properly. A long period of marriage enables the wife to control and adapt her relationship with her husband in the different stages of life. So, it is wrong to think that menopause means the end of the wifes sexual relationship. Rather, if there is a desire to have sexual intercourse between the spouses, this would result in harmony between them no matter how old they are. Some people may resort to medical drugs which stimulate the sexual relationship; however, such drugs may lead to opposite results in many cases. There are rare cases which need these drugs. The wife may suffer from frigidity which may be due to a physical problem that can be solved through medical treatment, medication, or surgery, or it might be due to a psychological reason due to the negligence of the husband, an intense fear of pregnancy and delivery, or the roughness and recklessness of the husband. These matters usually lead to frigidity. The wife needs a longer period of time to be aroused. The husbands ignorance or overlooking of this fact - due to his eagerness or quick arousal - may result in the wife failing to interact with her husband. The husband should be fully aware of this fact and perform the normal means of foreplay such as flirtatious words, touching and so on, in order to prepare the wife to respond to the call for sexual intercourse with all her senses. Consequently, they would have a successful sexual relationship, and the wife would not suffer from frigidity. It is permissible for the wife to advise her husband regarding these matters.

The spouses should know that the best times for sexual intercourse are the times when they desire it. Each one should respond to the desire of the other. The Messenger of Allaah said: If a man invites his wife to his bed [i.e. to have sexual intercourse], and she refuses to come to him and causes him to sleep in anger, then the angels curse her till morning [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim] Also, if a man sees a woman who pleases and sexually arouses him, his sexual intercourse with his wife would guard him from the devils temptations, prevent the disasters of illicit sexual desire and maintain his chastity. The Prophet said: A woman advances and retreats in the shape of a devil, so when one of you sees a woman, he should come to his wife [and have intercourse with her], for that will repel what he feels in his heart. [Muslim and Abu Daawood] Abu Sulaymaan Ad-Daaraani said, The righteous wife does not belong to the worldly life. She gives you time for the Hereafter. She occupies herself with managing the house and satisfying desire. In general, the times of sexual intercourse should be in accordance with the need of both spouses, and the wife should satisfy her sexual desire with her husband whenever she needs, and the husband should do the same. Allaah The Almighty Says (what means): {Your wives are a place of sowing of seed for you, so come to your place of cultivation however you wish.} [Quran 2:223] The times of sexual intercourse are connected with each ones preparation for the other and being physically and psychologically relaxed. They should have sufficient time to have a rest after sexual intercourse. The wife should take care of the cleanness and beauty of her bed, as this has a good effect on pleasing the husband. The husband should properly flirt, fondle and show his love to his wife. On the other hand, the wife should be skillful in complimenting and flirting with her husband, praising his good characteristics and overlooking his faults. She should beware of making him feel that he is weak or incapable, even if she is jesting with him, because this would affect him negatively. The wife should say nice, kind words to her husband, play with him, hug and kiss him. The Prophet said to Jaabir when he found out that he had married a previously-married woman: Why not a virgin, so that you might play with her and she play with you, and you might amuse her and she amuse you? [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim] In this Hadeeth, the Prophet clarified that this was a mutual matter between the spouses. Wearing perfume has a good effect in making the sexual intercourse successful; it helps to arouse feelings and emotions and adds pleasure to the spouses contact. On the other hand, bad smells and odors result in aversion and detestation. Sexual intercourse requires calmness and relaxation, so that the body and the nerves do not become tense and hinder the perfect enjoyment of sexual intercourse. There are many positions for sexual intercourse. It is permissible to use any of them as long as penetration takes place in the vagina. Changing positions gives the sexual meeting between the spouses a new flavor for the human soul becomes bored with everything repetitive. Some people may suddenly suffer from impotence despite intense arousal and consequently fail to have sexual intercourse. This may happen due to the long period of foreplay before sexual intercourse, or due to a long time of waiting, eagerness and abstention. To overcome this problem, the spouses should have moderate foreplay and avoid exhaustion and intense arousal. Some men might use condoms to prevent conception since it hinders semen from reaching the uterus. This way is not free from harm. Conception may take place due to a hole in the condom. Also, it may lead to incomplete sexual satisfaction and result in worry and psychological disorder. Some husbands may discharge the semen outside the vagina in order to prevent conception which is called coitus interrupts. This way also has some harmful consequences, because it does not give the spouses the chance to have perfect pleasure. This might lead to psychological disturbance, continuous quarrels and an unstable life. This way might be a resort to solve some social problems like birth control provided that it is practiced upon the agreement of both parties without excessive use.

Children and Emotional Communication The husband has rights over his wife. It is not permissible for her to overlook or neglect these rights even if it is for the sake of his children. She should distribute her efforts between her husband and her children. It is not permissible for her to neglect adorning herself under the pretext of having children to take care of. The wifes being occupied under the pretext of taking care of the housework and the children are not an acceptable excuse. This may force the husband to leave home searching for another place to find the lost amusement and the aspired rest. Some men of weak faith might fall into moral vice as a result of the wifes negligence. The wife should fear her Lord and fulfill her duties towards her husband. The wifes keenness and devotion to take care of her children - provided that there is balance between them and their father - is one of the means of marital happiness. When she takes care of their health, morals and knowledge, the husband is delighted and free from worry about his wife and children. Families of the Spouses and Their Role in Emotional Communication Allaah The Almighty exhorts people to maintain kinship ties and makes kindness towards kinsfolk as a way to Paradise. Marriage extends the circle of kinsfolk. The wife should be kind towards her and her husbands relatives without neglecting the right of any. It is obligatory upon her to treat her family with kindness and her love for her husband necessitates love for his family and being kind to them. Kinship ties cling to the Throne of Allaah and whoever maintains it, Allaah will maintain a connection with him, but whosoever severs relations with it, Allaah The Almighty will sever His connection with him. The Prophet said that Allaah The Almighty says in a Qudsi (sacred) Hadeeth: I am Ar-Rahmaan [The Most-Merciful]. I created the Rahim [Kinship ties], and derived for it a name from My Name. Whoever maintains it, I will maintain connection with him. Whoever severs it, I will sever connection with him. [Al-Bukhaari] The Prophet said: Whoever likes that his provisions would be expanded and his life would be prolonged, should maintain kinship ties. [Muslim] The wife should visit the family of her husband and maintain amicable relations with them. They become her family and her children are attributed to them. The keenness of the wife to benefit the family of her husband, receive them well, ask about them, present gifts to them, and help them pleases her husband, generates affection and amiability, and forces the husband to respect and appreciate his wife. Each spouse should be keen on maintaining good relations with the family of their partner, and share their joy and sadness. He/she should hasten to check those who stop visiting them, and to be beside them if they need. The husband should receive with hospitality the acquaintances of his wife. It is narrated that a woman visited the Prophet so he met her happily and asked about her condition. When she departed, he said: She would visit us during the days of Khadeejah, and loyalty is [a part] of faith. [Al-Haakim] Also, a poet in the pre-Islamic era reminded his cousins about the importance of maintaining kinship ties and said that severing kinship ties is the reason behind destruction. Therefore, the spouses should realize the goal behind the kind treatment of relatives of the other which increases love, affection and mercy, and instills respect and confidence between them. Consequently, the children will grow up loving goodness, hating evil and hoping for the reform of the whole world. Cooperation Between the Spouses Cooperation between the spouses gives life a wonderful flavor. Each of them shares with his partner the times of joy and sadness, poverty and richness, and in taking the right decisions. According to this participation, they become one soul and have effective happiness, affection, mercy and tranquility. There are many forms of cooperation between the spouses: Cooperation in Seeking Knowledge Knowledge is the way to nobility and high rank in this worldly life and the Hereafter. Allaah The Almighty Says (what means): {Allaah will raise those who have believed among you and those who were given knowledge, by degrees.} [Quran 58:11] The Prophet said: When Allaah intends goodness for someone, He bestows upon him insight in religion. [Al-Bukhaari and Muslim]

The husband should teach the wife the matters of her religion if he is able to do so. If he is not able to do so, he should allow her to go out to attend sessions of knowledge in the mosque (Masjid) or institute. He should facilitate for her the means of seeking knowledge: buying good books or tapes of recorded lessons and admonitions. The wives of the Prophet were keen on conveying the religion and the Hadeeths of the Prophet to all Muslims. The women of the Companions were keen on learning religious knowledge. It is narrated that some women asked the Prophet to fix a day for them as the men were taking all his time. Upon that, he promised them one day for religious lessons and commandments. [Al-Bukhaari] There have been prominent scholars of Fiqh (Jurisprudence), Hadeeth and admonishers among women in the past and present. The woman would seek knowledge just like her husband out of her keenness on learning and understanding her religion and to bring up her children to be well-educated and knowledgeable of their religion. Umm Salamah would answer the questions of women, and Aaishah was famous for her abundant knowledge. Cooperation in Doing Acts of Obedience A wife is the partner of the man in his life, and she can make his life either happy or miserable. The righteous wife encourages her husband to perform acts of worship; such as prayer, fasting, Zakaah (obligatory charity), and Hajj. She helps him adhere to these acts of worship and helps him pray voluntary prayers at night and to give charity to the poor. The righteous wife really is considered half of the mans religion. The righteous man helps his wife obey Allaah The Almighty and do good deeds. The Prophet said: May Allaah show mercy to a man who gets up during the night and performs prayer, awakens his wife to pray and, if she refuses, he sprinkles water on her face [to wake her]. May Allaah show mercy to a woman who gets up during the night and performs prayer, awakens her husband for the same purpose; and if he refuses, she sprinkles water on his face. [Ibn Maajah] It is wonderful if the spouses are used to reading together something, even if a few verses from the Quran after Fajr prayer, and specify a part to be recited daily. Many spouses who do so have stated that it has had a good effect on their hearts. It even melts away the marks of differences between them. This is the active participation which delights the spouses in the worldly life and the Hereafter. Cooperation in Seeking Provision Financial support is an obligatory matter upon the husband. Muaawiyah ibn Haydah said, I asked the Messenger of Allaah What right can any wife demand of her husband? He replied: You should give her food when you eat, clothe her when you clothe yourself, not strike her on the face, and not revile her or separate from her except in the house. [Abu Daawood and Ibn Hibbaan] The righteous, honorable wife has many great characteristics. She saves for her husband many expenses and wears what covers her Awrah (body parts forbidden to be uncovered), eats what satisfies her need, and can afford part of the responsibilities of her husband. Asmaa bint Abu Bakr helped her husband in cultivating some land which the Prophet endowed to him. She would carry date stones on her back for miles and then used to prepare it as food for the horse of her husband until her father, Abu Bakr gave her a servant as a gift in order to spare her this hard service. The Mother of the Believers, Zaynab bint Jahsh would tan leather and sell it to have money to give as charity in the cause of Allaah The Almighty. The wife of Imaam Ahmad ibn Hanbal would spin wool to help in earning their living. The woman can do work that helps her husband be content and have lawful gains without going outside the home and intermixing with men. This work returns in profit and helps the husband; however, it is not obligatory upon her to do so. Rather, she should do so out of participation and cooperation. Some of this work could be: 1- Breeding domestic animals 2- Tailoring clothes for women 3- Embroidery and knitting 4- Art work

The women among the Companions would advise their husbands before they would go out to work saying, Fear Allaah with regards to us, and do not feed us except from lawful gain. We can bear the hunger of this worldly life, but we cannot bear the punishment of Allaah in Hereafter. Islam urges contentment and asceticism. A Muslim woman should not yearn for the wealth and blessings that are in the hands of her sisters. The Prophet said: Successful is the one who embraces Islam and is provided with sustenance sufficient for his need, and Allaah makes him content with what He has bestowed upon him. [Muslim] The Prophet was content and never criticized food. If he liked it, he would eat; otherwise, he would leave it and not say a word. He would eat bread with vinegar or oil. He would wear the available clothing either made of wool, cotton or linen and would wear what was given to him as a gift. It is permissible for the woman to go out to work to gain money if her husband is unable to work or if there is a need for her work. However, she should go out decently and avoid the places of intermixing with men as much as she is able. Cooperation in Housework What a wonderful act it is when the husband participates with his wife in some of the housework even if out of affection, sympathy and moral appreciation! It is a good chance for the man to express his appreciation for his wife and endear himself to her even if he does simple work, such as carrying the dishes to the table, spreading out the carpets, and so on. The Prophet was a good example to be followed in helping his family. He would milk his sheep, sew his clothes, mend his shoes, serve himself, clean the home, hobble the camel and feed it, bake with his wives, and carry his goods from the market. In the Battle of the Trench, Jaabir ibn Abdullaah helped his wife to prepare a banquet and he slaughtered the sheep, skinned it, and roasted it while his wife was grinding the barley and preparing the bread. When he finished, he called the Prophet to the banquet. The Prophet took with him a group of the Companions and the food sufficed them all by virtue of the blessing of the Prophet. Cooperation of the Spouses in Raising the Children Children are the adornment of this worldly life and they are the wish of all spouses. The parents exert their efforts to bring up their children in the best way in order to be righteous offspring that obey Allaah The Almighty. If the spouses leave their children without taking care of them or giving them a sound upbringing, they may become a source of resentment and regret rather than a blessing. Cooperation in raising the children necessitates taking care of them and fulfilling their needs without stinginess or extravagance and without distinction among them or preferring one over another. There should be justice between them in terms of food, clothes, looks, smiles and kisses. It is impermissible to prefer the males over the females. Rather, there should be equality in everything, even in gifts. Basheer ibn Sad Al-Khazraji went to the Prophet accompanied by his son An-Numaan, and said, O Messenger of Allaah, I make you witness that I gave An-Numaan such and such. The Prophet asked: Did you give such a gift to all of your children? He replied, No. The Prophet said: Let someone other than me bear witness to this. The Prophet further said: Do you not except dutifulness from all of them as you expect from him? The man said, Yes, of course. The Prophet said: Then, no [do not do this]. [Muslim, An-Nasaai and Ibn Maajah] The greater part of the responsibility of raising the children lies with the mother, as she spends the day and the night with her child, feeding him, giving him drink, giving him kindness and warmth, teaching him the principles of religion, the basics of knowledge and how to take the good and avoid the harmful and so on, so that the child grows up a good person benefiting himself, his family and his Ummah (Muslim nation). The Arab poet, Haafith Ibraaheem, said that the mother is like a school in that if you prepare her well, you would prepare a well-mannered people. On the other hand, the father works outside the home all day to ensure a good life for his family. He might return home late at night and need to rest. We hear a lot that the father goes out to work before his children wake up and

returns after they sleep, and that the children do not see their father except in the holidays. He might sometimes travel for years away from the children. Fathers should think carefully about this matter because it has a bad effect on the children. In fact, the responsibility of upbringing should be borne by both spouses. It is not permissible for the husband to leave his children without care. He must sit with them daily in order to know their conditions and listen to their activities, and then guide them to the correct way if they made a mistake, and encourage them if they did what is right. Hence, the spirit of cooperation and understanding will spread among the family members. The children will obey the instructions of the parents and be keen on satisfying them. Accordingly, it will be easy for the parents to guide them and reform their bad behavior. The spouses should do their best and cooperate to bring up righteous children. If the upbringing of the child was ignored while he was young, it would be hard to reform him when he grows up. The child gets accustomed to the way that he grows up being accustomed to. The Prophet said: Honor your children, and bring them up well. [Ibn Maajah] Whoever is left in his childhood without being disciplined, it would be far harder to discipline him when he grows up. It should be taken into consideration to train the children to pray, encourage them to memorize the Quran and read beneficial knowledge, develop natural abilities and talents, and encourage them to go frequently to the mosques and places of knowledge in order to keep them away from the places of corruption and bad company. If the spouses cooperate well and are patient in the upbringing of the children, Allaah The Almighty would admit them to Paradise and protect them from Hell. Aaishah said, A woman came to me with her two daughters. She asked me [for charity], but I found nothing with me except one date-fruit, so I gave it to her. She accepted it and then divided it between her two daughters, and she herself ate nothing of it. She then got up and went out. When the Messenger of Allaah came in, and I narrated to him the story, and he said: He who is tested [by bearing the responsibility] of [bringing up] daughters, and is benevolent towards them, they would become protection for him against Hell. [Al-Bukhaari, Muslim and At-Tirmithi] Treating Servants The wife might be unable to meet the needs of the home: cleaning, preparing food, bringing up the children, serving the husband, and so on. Accordingly, she may resort to hire a servant or babysitter to shoulder some of these responsibilities. It is more appropriate to have a Muslim servant. Such servants are our brothers and sisters whom we should treat kindly. We have a good example in this regard in the life of the Prophet. Anas said, I served the Messenger of Allaah for nine years, and I do not know [of any instance] when he said to me, Why you have done this or that, and he never found fault with me in anything. [Muslim] The Prophet said: [Servants are] your brothers whom Allaah has placed under your command. So whoever has a brother under his command should feed him of what he eats, and dress him of what he wears. Do not ask them [i.e., the servants] to do things beyond their capacity [power], and if you do so, then help them. [Al-Bukhaari] When a man helps his servant, he instills in him love and sympathy. A man might be used as a porter, cook, driver, gardener, and so on, due to the need for him. The aging or disability of the husband or the wife is one of the reasons of having servants. They should choose an honest servant who conceals the secrets of the home and safeguards its belongings. It is not permissible for the husband to be in seclusion with the maid-servant, and it is impermissible for the wife to be in seclusion with the male-servant or to display her beauty before him, in order to prevent evils and unfavorable results. The wife should be alert and careful in her dealing with men who usually visit the home, such as the presser, milkman, collector of electricity fees, and so on. ******** ******** ********