If you’ve ever asked yourself: “Does a husband in Islam have the right to his wife’s body?” then the short answer to that question is yes, a husband in Islam has a right to his wife’s ‘availability”. But that’s not the whole story. I remember reading this myself and thinking: “It’s my body and my choice! No one has a right to me except for me!” Bear with me on this one, sisters. I know it goes against many internalized processes. From feminism to basic human rights to religious beliefs and psychological needs. It’s a wild, confusing ride, honestly. So if you are okay with just knowing that the husband has a right to his wife’s body in Islam, there you have it! But if you want to know why that is, then continue reading…
Some disbalance in rights… (& duties)
Let’s first say that there is some disbalance in rights between men and women in Islam. It is stated in the Quran that in the eyes of Allah, men and women are equal to each other. Not one is better or worth more than the other. Having said that, the fact that we are seen as equals in Allah’s eyes does not mean we have the same rights. Allah has made us men and women, masculine and feminine, dominant and submissive. We are not made to be the same. We are meant to complement each other, to fill each other up, to make a whole!
“It is He who created you from a single soul, And made its mate of like nature in order that you might dwell with her in love….” (7:189)
Muslim women have the right to financial security
This may seem off subject but bear with me here. One of our rights as women is our right to be taken care of. That means living expenses, a house, clothes, basically anything that is needed to lead a fulfilling life. You have the right that your husband provides this for you, even if you are richer than he is. Allah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“but the father of the child shall bear the cost of the mother’s food and clothing on a reasonable basis” [al-Baqarah 2:233]
“Let the rich man spend according to his means; and the man whose resources are restricted, let him spend according to what Allaah has given him” [al-Talaaq 65:7]
Muslim men have a duty to provide
In turn, men were given the duty to provide for women. Allah has given men certain financial obligations because by virtue men are more physical and are more masculine (independent, aggressive, strong, dominant, assertive etc). Husbands are supposed to protect and maintain their wives by directing and taking care of them, which means that they are the leader in the household. As a wife, you support your husband in his position as head of the household which means that you respect his leadership, you take care of his wealth, treat his family well and listen to him!
“Men are the protectors and maintainers of women because Allaah has made one of them to excel the other, and because they spend (to support them) from their means” [al-Nisaa’ 4:34]
That is also why I’m very anti “let’s make evert 50:50 that’s fair”. Allah has given men a duty, sisters, so let them provide for you. Even if you don’t need them to. It is one of your rights and best believe your husband will want to claim his rights 😉
Does a Muslim husband have the right to his wife’s body in Islam?
Yes, they have that right
Interestingly, the husband has a few more rights over his wife than his wife of him. For now, I’m focussing on the subject at hand. The following is stated in the Quran (interpretation of the meaning):
“And they (women) have rights (over their husbands as regards living expenses) similar (to those of their husbands) over them (as regards obedience and respect) to what is reasonable, but men have a degree (of responsibility) over them [al-Baqarah 2:228]
As a wife, you have to make yourself available to your husband. According to the Quran, the husband has the right to enjoy his wife physically. If the wife is not fasting, is not on her period and isn’t ill, he has a right to have sex with her. Of course, asking nicely is the way to go. Men are never allowed to force anyone into anything since this counts as rape. If the wife refuses to respond to her husband’s request for sex, it is seen as a sin (unless she is obligatory fasting, is sick, etc.) So again, yes, a husband has a right to his wife’s body and has the right to be intimate with her. But why?
But why has Allah given the husband that right?
Sex is a design by Allah for a husband and wife to feel connected both emotionally and physically. Allah made men with this need inside of them and realising it is not only good for him, but also for her, and most importantly, for their marriage. By now we all know that sex is important to men but is it necessary to always be available to your husband? And why is sex so important to most men? Let’s look into the science behind sex.
Male and female brains share the same basic structure and chemicals. Where it gets interesting is the different ratio of chemicals and the different sixes of the structure in male brains. These difference explain for the most part our basic feminine and masculine natures. It is why women love talking and nurturing babies and houseplants. And why men like competitive sports, video games and sex. Alright so now we know how we are different but where is the guideline of the male brain that states “Sex is that important to me, Allah commands you to be available to me for it”.
Sex is a man’s oxytocin fix
Women produce a lot of estrogens, the ‘female’ chemical, which increases the effect of oxytocin, the feel-good happy love chemical. Male brains feel the effects of oxytocin significantly less because they don’t produce as much estrogen. Not only that, but they also produce less serotonin than women. Serotonin is the key hormone that stabilizes our mood, feelings of well-being, and happiness. Therefore, men take a lot more time to form emotional connections since they have less estrogen and because of that a lower response to oxytocin and serotonin. It’s why men can date a woman for months without feeling a thing.
Men have a hard time getting their oxytocin fix, BUT, when a man is orgasming, his oxytocin levels are basically skyrocketing (in comparison to his normal levels) Men are never happier, then when they just had an orgasm with the woman that they love. They feel complete and utter bliss, and at that moment, husbands actually bond with their wives. It is, according to science, the best way for a husband to receive love from his wife. When your husband has sex with you, it is emotional. When you deprive him of sex, you deprive him of feeling worthy, loved, and lovable.
In Summary, I believe Allah has granted men this right because…
Science shows us that men feel loved by their wives by having a physical connection. It’s the best way for them to release oxytocin which makes bonding to their wife easier. As you know, men are also the ones who are supposed to provide for their wife and lead the respective household. The wife is meant to be cared for and cherished. I think, and I repeat, I think, that the reason Allah made it obligatory for women to be available to their husband is that a husbands love for his wife ensures her well-being in life.
I mean think about it: most happy marriages consist of two happy people who love each other. The man will love his wife more if she is always available to him in the bedroom right? And the wife will love her husband more if he takes care of her, protects her and loves her! We assume that the husband has less need of other women, if his own wife satisfies him enough, which will (hopefully) help him with lowering his gaze with other women around. A wife will see his discipline as love for her, which in the end, results in this perfect cycle of love, friendship, trust and (also very important to a healthy marriage) sex!
Your Classy Muslim Sister helps you heal and love
Your husband’s desire for sex is a desire to connect with you! And although sex is more than just a physical thing, the physical aspect gets better the more you do it! You learn everything about the other person, what they like, dislike and how to give them pleasure. Doesn’t that make you feel powerful? So learn to love and enjoy sex, it may at first go against everything our modesty protects us from, but there should never be modesty between a husband and a wife.
Do you want to learn more about Halal Intimacy with an Islamic point of view? If you look in my Love category, you’ll find more articles like this. I write about Elegance, Self Love and more! Do you want to help the other Muslim sisters in your life too? Share my blog with them and follow me on Social Media!
Your Classy Muslim Sister