Friday, March 4, 2011

Polygyny and Life Update

Bism Illah wa as salaamu alaykum wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh.

Been a bit quiet over here, hasn't it? Well, when it's quiet there is usually a whole lot going on. It's taken all this time to manage to type something half reasonable! Here are the key developments in polygyny and life.

My mother informed me that she is disgusted with our polygyny situation, that my husband has insulted and disrespected me, that my self-esteem has flown out of the window, and that to her it is nothing better than prostitution.  She says she put my husband on a pedestal as he was so wonderful with us, but now she's disappointed in him. All this communication surprised me, but Qadr Allah mashaa fa'al.

I understand how hard this must be for her to comprehend. She is 74 years old, not Muslim, and follows God by doing whatever seems right to her. Her judgement is based on her own lordship, not the word of The Creator. May God guide her to His Truth - ameen. However, it did surprise me and, of course, hubby and I are considering whether there is some way we can help her better understand it.

I have been facing unexpected behavior problems with my daughters, which I was initially so surprised by that I felt I was in a boat without any oars in the middle of the ocean, without GPS. Fortunately, my GPS arrived in the form of sakinah and guidance from Allah, subhaana wa taala. Now I'm relaxing into it all and preparing myself for a whole new "experience" of parenting, lol.

As for the polygyny, our schedule has changed. With maghrib prayer getting later and later and the change over time being 6:30 p.m., it was disturbing the bedtime of our two young daughters. I mentioned it and now the change over time is 5:50 p.m., so that dinner is at 6:00 p.m. and there is plenty of time for everyone to get to bed on time.

Hubby has Arabic classes 5 days a week from  7:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. This has made him a bit more elusive, LOL. To ensure that the children see him, he has now split the afternoon visit time between each home. In effect, between around 4:30 and 5:50, he will visit both homes so that he has seen everyone before dinner and going for his class.

Zainab has a new work schedule in which she works evenings from 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. on Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. This has a big impact on us all, because the normal schedule cannot be adhered to. Because she leaves around 4:30 p.m., she is not home for the step-children or for the family dinner on these nights...and not even for her visit time! This has resulted in me having the step children during the day almost every day. It has also resulted in me cooking dinner for all six of us almost every evening on alternate weeks when Saturday and Monday are my nights, and still the majority of the nights when they are not. I told hubby that I'm not feeling much like this is polygyny. I'm not getting any chance to miss him, LOL!

I didn't realize, when hubby said that Zainab worked and that polygyny would be an easy transition, exactly how true that was. Since Zainab has gone back to work, I'm not getting the time off I was enjoying and planning for in the early days. Of course, the upside of all this is that the children have dinner with daddy almost every night and there really isn't much chance for them to miss him. Such a mild start should make a gradual increase more natural if or when Zainab stops working.

As for the relationship with Zainab, it is going along well enough. We find a bit more to talk about as I have started selecting topics that will be easy to expand on. She came to the park for a multi-family cook-out and met some of our other friends. Everything is very foreign for her, so this is not an easy time in regards to adjustments, learning, and cultural differences. However, she is perfectly peaceable, polite, and pleasant so we have no problems at all. We exist in the same space easily, talk and laugh about general things here and there, and are basically happy wives in our own space, mashaa'Allah.


  1. May Allah (SWT) reward you for your patience. I hope to find further strenght in your example.

  2. Assalamu Aleykum dear sister,

    "I told hubby that I'm not feeling much like this is polygyny. I'm not getting any chance to miss him, LOL!", this really made me smile :)
    MASHALLAH what a beautiful and simple post about polyginy once again.Most of my fears about polyginy vanish whenever I come to your blog.JazakALLAH Khair dear sister!

  3. Subhan Allah sometimes I forget that polygyny isn't always a cookie cutter situation. May Allah give you strength and patience. Space, for me, is a virtue and helped our relationship. Because I had more control of how and when we interact, and less "family" time for shaytan to play with my thoughts. I can only imagine the challenge you're facing right now. LOL if anyone can do it it's MAI insha'Allah! May Allah bless you and your family.

  4. I am really shocked that you told your mom so soon. He has married several times before, why is she so shocked that he has done it again? May Allah make your affairs easy, Ameen! It is nice to know that this is a drama free blog. You always put Allah first and make the best of your situation to please Allah. I really admire you. I am hoping we meet in this life, inshallah!!

  5. A short lived honeymoon period for you. Now back to real life. It sounds like the only thing changed for you is you get the bed to yourself every other night. Why is it that you get your husband's children on the days Zainab works if she is working nights? And what happens if Zainab wants to work after having children, will you then have her children too?

    I know you live your life on a higher plain - but for those who have not quite reached that level, would it be wrong to say to a husband something along these lines? "You chose polygamy and all that goes with it. I respect that you now have a new wife and a life with her. But you get all the responsibility that goes along with it. So the schedule stays the same for me when it's not my night. You (husband)and 2nd wife can work out the issues of dinner and children on your nights without involving me. Perhaps that means you (hubby)can cook for the children and get a babysitter when needed. However, I would be happy to help out in emergency situations just as I would hope 2nd wife would do the same for me."

    I think I can guess what your reply is going to be. lol

  6. Umm Shuhada, Alhamdu l'Illah for every ounce of patience Allah has blessed me with. Ameen to your dua!

  7. Wa alaykum as salaam wa Rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh Umm Zakarya,

    Mashaa'Allah, sister...jazaaki Allahu khayran. It's impossible to make things all complicated when they really are simple and my world is, as always blessed and fine. Al hamdul'Illah! I'm looking forward to the next installment of your Pakistan trip!

  8. Umm Hamza - ameen ukhty, wa iyaaki! Thanks for that vote of confidence, LOL!

    These logistics are extremely temporary inshaa'Allah. Yes, space is important and after having that delicious gulp of refreshing "free for me" time, I think it is just part of Allah's perfect plan that when the schedule does regulate, I'll be looking forward to it even more. It goes to show how important it is for all to play their part in polygyny. Fortunately, this is a very soft and simple entry into it for us all, wa al hamdu l'Illah.

  9. @ CM: Mai only has my children until I get there. One of the reasons I married Zainab was because I knew there wouldn't be a big change in the schedule in the beginning.

    Also, homeschooling takes place at Mai's place, so the children need to be there. Zainab can't homeschool the children. If and when Zainab has a baby, her working days will be over. The proper raising of children is paramount.

    I don't have to eat dinner with Mai and the girls, but I enjoy it. Why eat dinner alone when I can eat with them? Besides...Mai makes delicious brownies :)

  10. I was wrong Mai - you didn't say anything! lol

    Forget the lemonade - I can clearly see I need your brownie recipe instead!

    Thanks for the answers 1family2wives. I know you don't need this reminder, but Mai appears to be a gem! You are a lucky man!

  11. Umm Salwaa...Ameen! My mother didn't know this was the third attempt, and embarrassingly enough, I cannot remember for the life of me if I told her about the first one or not. I have certainly been talking about it and trying to prepare her for the eventuality ever since she visited us in the States in 2006. I waited for a couple of months before telling her, and frankly it is what it is. I am far, far beyond trying to hide my Islam or sweep certain issues under the carpet. Inshaa'Allah, given time she will see the reality of it all. Just as she's seen over these years that Islam didn't turn me into a fanatic or idol worshipper. Tawakalta 'ala Allah!

    This is a drama-free blog... oh, you made me laugh with that one! Perhaps I should change the name of this to "Drama-Free Blog" LOL!

    Bi ithn Illah, taala, in this life and in Jennah al Firdaus! Inshaa'Allah, I'll send you an e-mail. We are looking at 120 acres in Colorado.

  12. CM,...well you KNEW what I would say, so I figured I might as well save the energy in my fingers to bake those brownies,LOL!

    Actually, amazingly enough the honeymoon with hubby isn't over at all, mashaa'Allah. We are very happy and enjoy our time together more than ever. I think that it is a VERY part time thing for Zainab for as long as she chooses to work though.

    In any case, I think the response you suggested would be appropriate for someone who was being taken advantage of unduly. These really are circumstances that are temporary. The Arabic class is only until June. As my husband said, Zainab won't work once motherhood knocks on her door.

    As for dinner, the better you cook the more people want to eat with you. Those brownies seem to be the key to eternal love and company, LOL! Last weekend I made some organic chocolate peanut butter cookies (like a peanut butter cup but a cookie instead) and I thought hubby was going to die and levitate, LOL. Heart and stomach have strong and clear communication.

  13. Mai- So that's your secret weapon!!! Well, I hope you plan on sharing that how-to-keep-your-man-begging-for-more Brownie Recipe!!

  14. @ CM: She's more than a gem...she's my best friend!

  15. you could tell your mother that without polygamy your husband most likely would've been a serial philanderer...

  16. Is Mai going to homeschool Zainab's babies too?

  17. @ Anonymous: Zainab will homeschool her own children when the time comes.

  18. @ Anonymous: My mother-in-law is a wonderful lady, but she has different views and understandings. I feel if I say anything to her now, it will be taken the wrong way and not benefit anyone. I may become angry and transgress the bounds. As the mother of my wife, Allah has put her in a position that commands respect. Sometimes it's best to remain silent regardless of what the people think of you.

    We will just have to give dawah by our actions. Truly, Allah makes Muslims, and is the best of planners.

  19. salaam bro 1family2wives can i get a link to your blog, i searched but couldnt get.

    brother as you said that your wife is more then a GEM, then i think you made a huge mistake by bringing her a co-wife. Although i am not against polygmay and i know along with huge challenges it also brngs huge benfits to the family if done properly, as you and mai are doing it MashaAllah, May Allah accept it and grant you both jannah. we know that polygamy is sunnah but monogamy is also Sunnah.

    do you think it is wise to repay all that your wife has done with a co-wife?

    I am a revert my self so i know how you both are feeling about your mother-in-law and how your mother in law feels about polygmay. yes it is wise as a form of respect to keep silent for matter which people find difficult to understand. but inshaAllah if she understands tauheed and the way of Nabi (saw) and shariah law then it will easy for her to understand why islam allows polygmay.

  20. aslm alkm mai and famliy jaza kallah for ur blog i am south african also a second wife may allah bless your famliy jazak allah aaliya

  21. Asalaamu Alaikum sister

    Mashallah I discovered your lovely blog today Alhamdulillah.

    I am on the verge of polygamy at the moment, I could really use your advice and experience In'sha Allāh?

    If you have the time, please contact me

    Jazak-Allahu khayran
    Sarah xx