The Evil of the Tongue
Verbal abuse is one of the worst aspects of martial life for those that are the victims of it and the ones that do the verbal abuse are quite frankly the worst. The age old saying of sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me is quite literally flawed in its core meaning. There have been cases presented where a woman who had been verbally abused for years by her husband even in front of her children, resulting in her losing all of her own self-respect.
Verbal abuse takes many forms even if the person doing it does not realize that he is hurting the other person. Sadly in the case of wife and husband, it is always direct insulting in the form of criticizing. One of the worse ways to verbally abuse and really hurt another person is to ignore all of that person’s goodness and efforts and simply compare them to some other accomplished person. This is most common among husbands who verbally abuse their wives for petty reasons. One of the saddest realities of this horrific practice is that it is not limited or small in scale. Rather every one and especially Muslim households today suffer this curse. What most people fail to realize is that Verbal Abuse hurts deeply, even if it does not hurt as much as physical abuse.
One of the main concerns about this evil is that it is hard to identify. When a person hits his wife, the bruises are very real for all to see and assess that this couple is in a damaged relationship. However, Verbal abuse cannot be physically identified, but leaves emotional scars and wounded spirits which is much more dangerous. One thing to consider and accept is that verbal abuse is done from both sides of the relationship. Wives often are quick to verbally abuse their husbands and not only them, but involve all his family in their harsh words.
The religion of Islam is perfect and its messenger Prophet Muhammad (SAW) is the greatest of creation. As such, Islam has recognized the problems of verbal abuse and have guided its followers to refrain from it. The Messenger of Allah (SAW), said,“A true believer is not involved in taunting or frequently cursing (others) or in indecency or abusing.”' (al-Tirmidhi)
Keeping this hadith of Prophet Muhammad (SAW) in mind, all those men who think they are not abusing their wives because they don’t hit them but regularly and without fail never leave an opportunity to criticize or verbally abuse them, really need to reconsider their behavior. The same can be said for wives.
Identify Verbal Abuse
If a person wishes to better his or her condition with his partner, it is the most important step to first recognize the problem that whether verbal abuse exists or not. There are some ways to do it. Notice if you are always humiliated or depressed, if you have the feeling that you can’t do anything right, if your spouse belittles you all the time, if your spouse ignores your achievements, or if your spouse blames you in particular for all the problems of life.
Once that has been done, it is time to take the next step without fearing anyone except Allah (SWT). Converse with your spouse regarding the problems in life and extend clear boundaries in which you explain to them that what is tolerable and what is not tolerable. It is always good to involve an intellectual and good third party into the mix to sort out your problems. These can either be a therapist, but what is more preferred is a religious scholar. A learned man of the Quran and Islam can put the fear and love of Allah (SWT) into people and guide them how to behave and respect others through the teachings of Prophet Muhammad (SAW).