How is ‘marital rape’ not rape?

Published: January 4, 2012

The subject of marital rape leaves many people uncertain; can the act really be termed marital 'rape' ?

“He abuses me but I cannot refuse him. My family told me that it was my religious duty to do as he demanded and if I refuse, the angels will curse me all night.”

These are the words of a young Pakistani woman who contracted a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) when her husband, who had been engaged in several extramarital affairs, forced himself on her.

When it comes to marital rape, women are often confused whether they have been raped or not. The scenario of a stranger raping a woman on the street is immediately identified as rape, where as forceful acts by a husband upon a wife are considered acceptable. This is partly due to the cultural belief that is rooted in women’s minds that ‘submitting’ to their husband is a sign of a dutiful wife.

Due to this attitude, women are unaware that it is their right to say no to sex if they want to. A victim of marital rape usually finds the responsibility of the abuse on her own head, mainly due to the abuser’s justifications.

The subject of marital rape leaves many people uncertain; can the act really be termed marital ‘rape’?

There are some individuals who believe that there is no such thing as rape within a marriage whereas some claim that there is nothing wrong with a man forcing himself on his wife.

Sheikh Maulana Abu Sayeed, the president of the Islamic Sharia Council of Britain said:

“Clearly there cannot be any rape within the marriage. Maybe aggression, maybe indecent activity…because when they got married, the understanding was that sexual intercourse was part of the marriage, so there cannot be anything against sex in marriage. Of course, if it happened without her desire, that is no good, that is not desirable.”

“In Islamic sharia, rape is adultery by force. So long as the woman is his wife, it cannot be termed as rape. It is reprehensible, but we do not call it rape.”

Sahih Bukhari, the most authoritative Islamic text after the Holy Quran, quotes the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) as saying,

“If a husband calls his wife to his bed (ie to have sexual relation) and she refuses and causes him to sleep in anger, the angels will curse her till morning.” (Bukhari v.4, b.54, no.460).

However, the above mentioned quotations contradict the overall, traditional Islamic view about marriage being a contract based on mutual love, respect and consideration. Both the husband and wife have a right to their own body and, whilst consideration for a person’s sexual needs is normal, forceful sexual acts are not a sign of love or respect but become a fatal blow to a solid marriage.

On the other hand, it is important to note that our religion does make it clear that harming one’s wife is forbidden. Men are commanded to be kind and loving to their wives and treat them honourably and therefore, rape, abuse and ill treatment, whether it is physical, verbal or psychological , is unacceptable in a marital relationship.

Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) once remarked,

“The best among you is the one who is the best towards his wife” (Hadith – Muslim, #3466).

Unfortunately, Pakistani law does not recognise marital rape. The Hudood Ordinance, which was enacted in 1979, required  the woman to present four witnesses to corroborate accusations of rape, otherwise she would be convicted of having illegal sex.

The second law on this subject is the Women’s Protection Bill, approved in 2006, which passed the prosecution of rape cases from the Hudood Ordinance to Pakistan’s secular penal code. The bill enabled judges to try rape cases in criminals courts, rather than Islamic ones and ended the infamous need of male witnesses to support the rape accusation. However, it also eliminates the death sentence and reduces the penalty to five years imprisonment and a fine.

With cases of marital rape growing rapidly, some officials have expressed their concerns at the number of cases  going undetected. Doctors are also getting worried and have reported a large  number of patients who came to them after being assaulted and in dire need of  stitching for the severe damage done to their bodies.

Love is the foundation for a long lasting marriage. When a man unleashes this monstrosity on his wife and hurts her, it classifies as assault. One cannot claim to ‘love’ his wife when he forces himself on her, leaving her with vaginal tears and scars.

The truth is simple. When you force a woman to have sex with you – its rape. It does not matter whether the victim is married to you or not because no one deserves  such brutality.





Aneka Chohan

The author is a freelance journalist and human rights activist. She tweets as @anekachohan (

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Here is a good question.

    The witness law… the hadith about intercourse being a part of duty. These are all outdated philosophies. No place in civilization today. Recommend

  • Fahad Raza

    Sharia bashing in 1 2 3..Recommend

  • abdul moiz

    our people have the sick mentality that women are the personal property of the men of the family be it as sisters,mothers,daughters or cousins.
    the husbands of our society are told by the maulvis in the khutbas and in the madrassas that they have been given the right to torture their wives by their religion.their are numerous videos on youtube showing arab as well as pakistani maulvis saying this.

    there’s no concept of marital rape in pakistan because pakistani men think of their wives as their personal property ,their ownership.they think that god has given them the right to do with their wives as they wish,even if it means marital rape.Recommend

  • Ali Tanoli

    You gotta be kidding me after mariage having sex u called abuse and rape hahahahahhahah
    offcaurse if he or she is sick or not in mood they do but in poor and uneducated society there
    is no fun for rickshow and bus operator but this…..Recommend

  • mazhar salman

    it’s upto the women to change will never give up the luxuries which the ulema and maulvis tell them they have.women have to stand upto the misogyny and oppression done to women by pakistani men in the name of is time that our women told the mullahs that it is unacceptable to preach that wives are the personal property of husbands,that wives must worship their husbands as ”majazi khudas”.
    enough is enough,too many times have i seen women being quoted religious texts and quotations by their husbands,fathers to justify the abuse of their’s time women spoke up,no one is going to give respect or their rights to them on a silver platter.Recommend

  • Tahir

    @Here is a good question.:How can a Hadith be outdated philosophy?I think you should think before saying anything. Second if a woman does not happy with his marriage Islam give her right to separate.Don’t blame a Hadith or Islam for problems in our society. Recommend

  • Cynical

    @Aneka Chohan

    You are a brave girl.Keep it up!!!Recommend

  • Loneliberal PK

    A marriage may sanction intercourse, but is not a hall-pass for sexual abuse.

    Once in a while, one should put religion aside and use his own conscience to decide whether it should be acceptable, morally or legally, for a man to force his wife to have sex. The answer is “no”, a clear no-brainer!Recommend

  • Jehanzeb

    Why we still start digging up religious injunctions even when an issue is of ethical nature in current times? If left to depend on religion, women, religious and cultural minorities and the weak would be as vulnerable as they were in the Talbanic Afghanistan. Rape, whether within marriage or without, remains a horrible act. There is no room for power-based domination in a marital or any other social relationship. Let us start using our minds, instead of relying on the scriptures which are blank at best and misogynist at worst. Marital rape and violence is a crime. Recommend

  • Pakistani Hindu

    @Here is a good question.:
    Careful dear… you may be called a blasphemer.Recommend

  • Mohammad

    The final paragraph beats the purpose of all Islamic references mentioned above by the writer. So as proven by the hadith above, there is no marital rape, yet the writer insists that the truth is simple and there is marital rape.

    Pointing out a few instances of where a husband has shown undesirable attitude towards his wife does not justify creating an entire provision in law for marital rape. That will open a whole Pandora’s box and will result in an unprecedented level of divorces in the society. How can you prove when sex was with the consent of the wife and when it wasn’t? So basically all you have is the word of the wife?

    Not that I am agains’t women’s rights in this society but this is just taking it a bit too far. Recommend

  • MarkH

    A big part of it is that it’s extremely hard to prove. It’ll be in their own home, so no witnesses. Married couples fight, so an argument and heated tempers/immaturity leading to accusations made solely to hurt the other party/win the argument/come out on top are another possible factor that can’t be proven. The same bodily evidence you look for in a rape can be explained away as marital relations. Injuries can also be explained away or can at least get themselves separated from the rape charge calling it spousal abuse and the only other evidence left is canceled out by the previous thing I mentioned.

    I’m not saying it’s right. I’m also not saying that many reports aren’t as they say they are. It’s just law based. There’s so much reasonable doubt people would want something solid before setting things in motion. But, they can’t get it, so it fades and eventually gets forgotten.Recommend

  • Faisal

    What a mess. If the sahab has got extramarital affairs, the woman has every right not only to stay away but even ask for seperation i.e. khula. This article like many is a ‘blind focus’ on one hadith and a western-academic-style critique without any holistic understanding of the Deen. Ony if the writer had come across ‘no obedience to any creature (parents, spouses, an authority) in the disobedience of the Creator’ – hadith.Recommend

  • Atif

    You need to have a broader view not just the western one. The definitions differ like in India naked belly in saris are modesty when the same is indecent in Pakistani society. Similarly wearing bikini on beaches in europe is pretty decent and considered indecent in India. So get a perspective and stop imposing alien ideas just because mental freedom is still far from u. ThanksRecommend

  • AR

    I didnt like the placement of the Hadith about cursing of angels in the article.It is right there when you are trying to build a case and gives the impression that Islam justifies such brutality although the hadith is addressing normal circumstances(when everything between the couple is harmonious )…And the conclusion that its rape if it is forceful,kind of gives me the impression you concluded what you wanted to conclude ignoring all the refrences quoted.If experts dont term marital sexual abuse as rape,how can you jump to ur conclusion? It is horrible thing to say the least and I completely agree we need to do something abt it but I dont agree when you term it rape.Recommend

  • kuku

    your liberal modern day concepts are actually causing harm to society.
    as muslims, we must all believe that whatever is said in the Quran And Hadis is for our own benefit if the above mentioned Hadis is authenticRecommend

  • alicia

    @the author
    On the other hand, it is important to note that our religion does make it clear that harming one’s wife is forbidden.
    Its permissible under the Quran to beat your wife if you just fear disobedience from her.Recommend

  • Rehan

    You can never call it “marital rape” if any one of the couple is not desiring. This word “rape” is not suitable in any way for this relation in marriage.
    We should care each other desires and wishes. But this is wife responsibility to ‘proceed or take first step’ in taking care of her husband desires.

    Nice Ahadees are qouted. “Maulana Sheikh” sab is rit, that we cant call it ‘rape’ anyways.Recommend

  • M Bilal Sohail

    @ Aneka… The topic you h’ve choosen is controversial, means that as Muslim we should follow the boundaries or Rights/Duties of spouse. As, far as this topic is concerned, we should not intermingle the word Rape with Marital rape, coz. the latter is purely constituted as the lawful step, however, in some cases if it is (..),then, there should be either avoiding or collaborative attitude…

    **However, your research enhances the ability to

    Think out of the box on some social cases.** :)

  • Noor

    Come’on, now don’t tell us to ignore Quran & Hadith because the West doesn’t like it. We already know from Quran that ‘Ahl-e-Kitab won’t stop their efforts against you, till they get you out of your religion’ Surah Al Baqarah.

    Sister, such articles have the potential to destroy our family structure, which has already been lost by West.

    As far as willingness of wife in such situations is concerned, I shall take it back to the grooming of both spouses;

    Had the parents groomed their children to take guidance from Quran, they would both have known at their own positions, not to force one’s desire if the other partner is not willing.
    The ruling holds good for both husband as well as wife.

    Though husband may be transgressing at times, due to lack of Islamic knowledge; we can’t equate or compare it with RAPE, which is a ‘Kabeera’ sin.

    Educate your parents, siblings, spouses & children from Quran & Hadith, even if they’ve grown old, but sooner the better (preferably, starting before school & learnt most of things before 17 yrs of age).

    We can start by studying (even translations) in our family sittings for 10 minutes daily, thus making huge learning gains.
    PLZ DO IT.

    Don’t let next generation be debating such issues, rather they should be performing bigger things.Recommend

  • umar

    OMG vaginal tears and scars, try not to speculate things to make your point here.OK we got it! Have you ever taken care of Man’s life? is everything happening in this part world to a woman only?
    If she has married to a man she must know she would have sex with him Recommend

  • Saadia

    Ms Chohan,

    You are really brave for picking a topic which is usually swept under the rug in Pakistan. Maybe it’s time to check whether the hadith quoted in this regard by the molvis is authentic or not. Religion aside it does not say a lot for a man who has to force his own wife. Many have said that if a woman is so unhappy in her marriage why doesn’t she get a Khulla . Do they live in Pakistan or in another country. Our society stigmatizes a divorcee to such an extant that a woman would pick being abused by a deadbeat husband as lesser of the two evils.Recommend

  • Sattar

    Aneka dear…all i can is “a Rape is a Rape just like a degree is a degree”Recommend

  • Bilal Mirza

    Many progressive and secular counties have only recently recognized marital rape as a criminal offence. The major trendsetter was the House of Lords in R v R when it famously held that “the fiction of implied consent [for reason of marriage] has no useful purpose to serve today in the law of rape”. I hope that sanity prevails in the Pakistani legislatures and they make the necessary amendments.Recommend

  • Risham Saeed

    So daring of u Anika . Marriage legalizes sex basically so husbands take their wives for-granted and wives submit because of their insecurity and fear going back to their family. Recommend

  • Risham Saeed

    Man’s life is equally important but whatever you do forcibly , disturbs the beauty of every act including sex regardless of relationships such as marriage Recommend

  • Zahid Hussain

    I seems to be funny to me. Aneka khan first get information about Islam then write here. Islam does not allow marital rape. Islam has more strict punishments for rapist. Islam says there is death punishment for rapist. If islamic rule is not applicable in pakistan you cannot say that whole islam is wrong. If a person is standing on street and he want to rape some girl. He saw 2 girls coming first one in hijab and other one in skirt. Tell me which one will be victim of him?? Recommend

  • Arooj Faheem

    A topic well chosen, but the article ended in a vague sort of disoriented manner. But i’d like to focus not on the topic itself, but the repercussions which now are quite prevalent in our modern day society. I’m sure we all have heard the term “extra-marital affair”. Marriage means SHARING, in all aspects. So where does the “forceful” element come in to it? Females have an individuality and their rights, true. But that doesn’t mean they forget their duties! More than the issue, it’s a play of psychology and so one must learn to deal with it. Recommend

  • Hassan Raza

    Why consulting religion. Have a happy non-religious sex life! Name this act whatever you like; one thing for sure. You can’t force anyone to do anything so of course its wrong. Recommend

  • Sadaf

    Marital Rape is still rape! When it is the person you have entrusted your life to who rapes you, it isn’t just physical or sexual assault, it is the betrayal of the very core of the marriage.Recommend

  • junaid

    i like this article very much it raised a very important issue regarding women assault and domestic violance but with due respect i am disagree with conclusion……… doubt assault, violance is not good rather prohibted but its not easy to say sexual incitation or demand from wife as rape……..marriage has certain basic ingredients and one of them is sexual interaction, and if you dont fulfill all the basic ingredients then dont marry or can take divorce. I think this is the simplest way to avoid this kind of so called rape……………..!!!!Recommend

  • Adeel

    Marital rape is rape.
    Islam teaches us this:
    If the wife wants to have sexual intercourse… the man CANNOT refuse. He has an obligation towards his wife to fulfil her needs, and he doesn’t have an option.
    If the husband wants to have sexual intercourse… the woman CAN refuse, and the guy has to accept the wife’s decision.
    This is what Islam teaches us… which is legally, morally and socially, perfect.
    If anyone does not believe me, they can do their own research on Islam… Recommend

  • blah

    I think this is the result of too much dependency on men. Women need to be independent financially, emotionally and socially in order to take decisions about their lives and put an end to their so called suffereing which they have brought upon themselves. Recommend

  • zaryab

    We cannot say it “marital rape” this is western idiology , i think if someone he or she do not want to live with someone then left her or him in islamic way “Talaaq” or “khula” . Now a days Girls or boys loves someone but there parents marriad them with someone else so they cannot accept that person by mind or soul . so this is totaly parents fault Recommend

  • Jahanzaib

    If one agrees that likeness, love is foundation of marriage then Islam directs the followers to ask for consent of both male and female before marriage. If they like each other then there is no point fulfilling their basic need. Secondly, if woman doesn’t like what is called the pillar of marriage, she has right of ‘Khula’. So you can’t bash Hadith or Sharia for that.Recommend

  • H

    The Ahadis sound nice in concept but in practice are terrible and inherently unreliable. If the Prophet (SAW) was alive today he’d probably file for libel against all the scholars who first compiled them.Recommend

  • Farahnaz Zahidi Moazzam

    I am also a human rights activist & writer, & I am against marital rape for sure. But I have reservations about this article. The writer is correct on many counts. But we cannot condone the article in totality. It is too categorical. As usual the hadith quoted from Bukhari about angels cursing the woman has been lifted out of context. Women may use refusal as an emotional power weapon in our cultures, hence the husband’s rights were stressed upon. But there are so many ahadith talking about the wife’s rights. Most importantly see the practical example of Prophet Muhammad (saw).Did he ever even raise his voice or lift his hand on his wives? Do you see use of “force” there? Need to think before we make sweeping statementsRecommend

  • anonymous

    just one side of the story…..
    ever heard of a woman who dosent like sex at all?…. and advise a middle class person aged 28 who worked day and night saved money got married…..and now his wife dosent like sex at all….. he will definitely do it forcefully Recommend

  • Sameer

    @alicia: Incorrect. Pls get ur facts right. The verse of the Quran you are referring to talks about infidelity…..understand the Arabic word Nushooz before such claims based on mere translations. And even in that, that is the last resort. And if at all, Islamic Sharia says to reprimand her by hitting lightly with a miswaak (something like a twig tooth brush) and do not harm her & do not bruise her or leave a mark on her.Recommend

  • Globalnomad

    @zaryab: Rightly said Zaryab, this is one of the major reasons!!Recommend

  • Globalnomad

    @umar: Why are you acting so naive, she is talking about forced sex!! and yes i myself witnessed saw a few cases of all such injuries!!Recommend

  • Ammad Qureshi

    Actually,it has nothing to do with Islam,As Islam does not say to force anything rather to do things with mutual understanding rather then to force any thing on any one…As far as Hadith is concerned There is another Hadith that One should not go wild to ones wife,rather then prepare her mentally for intercourse..Now there is a clear indication that Husband must have consent of her wife for having intercourse..This is a good way to do it,but if somebody does it with force then you cannot call it as a rape..rather an indecent act…As far as the name of topic is concerned it should have been “problems of spouses” rather then “Marital rape”.
    Ammad Qureshi

  • Sadia

    @anonymous: that is called ‘sick’!Recommend

  • mik

    Please read Surah Al-Nisa/ its translation whether in Urdu or English, you will find answers of every question you made here. You can find it easily in libraries or from markets. Please do some research before writing such controversial social issues or don’t take religion as masala in your writing. There is a complete chapter about spouses, their relations, how they should live or even talk to each other, you will be amazed to read that. Regards,Recommend

  • V

    @Zahid Hussain: Its the man who is wrong, neither the woman in hijab nor in skirt. And here, its a clear case of the man being brought up without any teachings of the Quran and Sharia. The basic principle here is that before you correct others on their way of living or clothing, its important that you are clear in your own mind first. Did the Quran and Hadith not tell you that you should not see a woman who is not yours? Trust me, if the man follows this one principle, most of the rapes would have never happened. Then, you dont really need any excuses for blaming a woman or her clothes for such crimes.
    Keeping religion aside for a minute, a woman in hijab would have been the first target in the west just as a woman is a target in the east. Got it?Recommend

  • farooq

    When Sania Mirza started playing tennis in Short Skirts, a man from audience asked one Islamic Scholar whether it is Haram or Hala in Islam and if it is Haram what should the muslims do. The Scholar smiled and said, I am amazed, scores of chirstain girls are playing tennis and acting in movies wearing such clothes, but no one asks the Pop if it is allowed in Christainity or not but if one muslim girl wears skirt everyone starts questioning Islam and its values. This is an individual act and her act does not approve or denounce the Islamic beleifs.

    Domestic violence, sex without consent of wife (i am not calling it a rape) and all other issues relate to individual mindsets and does not reflect a sciety as a whole or religion which those individuals practice. These crimes are global and one should not start bashing religion or society when a criminal person beats his wife.Recommend

  • maria

    well i have read alot abt the issue n being a dr have witnessed many cases….
    i agree that marriage is a contract that includes the conjugal rights n if a woman denies to her husband,angels will curse her all night but i also agree that islam says if a person(husband,parents) r disobeying god it is not necessary for u to obey them
    so if a person is having extra marital affairs he is comitting adultry so he should b stoned to death rather then forcing her wife into having sex with him to get a gift of STDs n AIDs.
    well we need to understand the issue that there is a difference in refusing a husband to have sex merely coz one is not in the mood or coz she physically cant bear it………..we see cases everyday where we recommend complete sexual rest after child birth,after c sections.after gynaological procedures coz of fear of severe bleeding n infection……..but they came back the very next day with ragged skin flaps,open wounds n heavy bleedings………… can b named anything from rape to assualt to abuse……….
    n dont think they r mythical stories…..they r real life everyday cases we deal with
    i dont blame religion for anything as when it says u to b good to ur wife n hanle her gently .why u forget all that n anly remember that she shouldnt refuse to u………..if u can forget what god told u to do,she can for sure forget what she was told as well
    so dont expect her to practice the “religion” when u r doing the other way round…..!!!!!Recommend

  • Solomon

    People who have given comments or the writer, how many of you are married. So for practical purpose, mention your marital status and mention whether you did marital rape ever or as a female were you ever been maritally raped. Lets take the poll and figure outRecommend

  • Solomon

    @Sadia, anonymous is perfectly right, such acts leads to extra marital affair, torture and fightsRecommend

  • Adeel

    Anika just want to say one thing…that dont say this a Rape…. You can say him as a bad husband but not a Rapist.. dont see just the defination of Rape also see lam.. and for your knowledge.. according to the defination Rape is to do sex without consent.. and as you know when someone marry.. he/she should know that he/she is giving the consent for many things….Recommend

  • Sophia Ahmed

    I’m just appalled by some of the comments being made to the author of this article. The readership in Pakistan thinks that by insulting the author, they are posing an effective argumentative stance. Rape is rape, in or out of marriage is unimportant. Forceful sex is considered a humanitarian crime in any society. We in Pakistan are blind to most righteous elements of a society. Why not this? Recommend

  • Parvez

    @Loneliberal PK: Agree with you. Good to see you back.Recommend

  • mik

    Individual mindsets and acts do not reflect the values of a society as a whole or you cant blame religion for it as ET is not responsible what the writer says in the article.Recommend

  • http://Karachi Saif

    Unfortunately, Pakistani law does not recognise marital rape. The Hudood Ordinance, which was enacted in 1979, required the woman to present four witnesses to corroborate accusations of rape, otherwise she would be convicted of having illegal sex.
    OK, I’ve had enough! Please provide the exact reference to this, and I don’t mean an ET article or an Asma Jahangir statement. This used to be a codified pieece of law, and surely there’s a lawyer out there who can give us the exact reference. Or don’t talk about this again. Recommend

  • Ziber

    Feminism and female chauvinism is going to take us to places, where there will be no point of return …Recommend

  • Loneliberal PK


    Religion has become an excuse for one to not listen to his own conscience, and go looking for these answers in the infinite depths of the scripture. And as a result, end up with bizarre and complicated ways of dealing with simple problems.

    You don’t need a hadith to tell you that forcing anyone to have sex with you is wrong. These are things that we, as civilized humans, should be able to figure out on our own.Recommend

  • Anonymous

    @Zahid Hussain: Answer: he will rape the one in the skirt first, then he will marry the one in the burqa and rape her after marriage. Because he is a rapist, and marriage won’t change that.Recommend

  • Meerza

    ha ha ha,
    Whether shes a wife or a GF or what ever,
    It is so unjust & unmanly to abuse a woman.

  • Modazul

    Young woman educated on western secular ideals is trying to counter Islamic scholars like Imam Bukhari who dedicated their whole lives to Islam and traveled thousands of miles on foot to collect Hadith of the Prophet Peace be Upon Him. Be careful woman. No matter which times u r living in and what the people of this world tell u to do. Allah will judge you based on the laws He prescribed for you to obey, not what the ‘civilised’ world told u to obeyRecommend

  • jamal

    it was really interesting to read the article and all the quotes…. I truly respect women with all my heart and as muslims it is our firm duty. But my only question and statement is. Does anyone really remember why the woman came into existance.??????? Have you all forgotten why God sent Eve for Adam.???
    Im sorry to say this but its a sore truth for all the women which they have to admit to…. But yes thats why as men we have been asked to look after them.
    My advance and humble appology to all the ladies but it is the truth no matter how badly you deny it …Recommend

  • Sadia

    @ Solomon: How come anonymous is ‘perfectly’ right? You think a ‘wife’ is only a sex giving object?

    “ever heard of a woman who dosent like sex at all?”. What does this mean? What does he want to say here?
    “…. and advise a middle class person aged 28 who worked day and night saved money got married…..and now his wife dosent like sex at all….. he will definitely do it *forcefully“* , what does “at all and forcefully mean”? Hello! I would like to marry a man who respects my emotions and care for me, not someone who forces himself on me. I guess Prophet has also clearly taught about this. Compassion and love on part of a man while having sexual love with his wife are must, Islamically. But , oh sorry, It is not about Islam but it is perhaps Pakistani guys…lol!

    The articles is talking about occasional refusal for having sex and not about refusing sex all the time…and if she does, there is a way to divorce or separation but not forcing oneself on other.

    Also, what does he mean by a ‘middle class person aged 28 who worked day and night saved money , got married”….I think the article applies to all classes, races and religions. Read the article again! Recommend

  • Ali Kazmi

    I think we should not treat this issue in a way where we create a clash between the religion and morality/ Human rights. Islam is a religion based on social system that protects the rights of women and children more than any religion in the world. However, the question here is not about what the religion allows but what is right and whats not in practice. I believe marriage is a very sacred relationship which is based on both physical and emotional attributes. Majority of the men in this country unfortunately treat their women as slaves (wives also being desired to serve as sexual slaves) while most of the women in general refer to their husbands as financial managers. This system is more of a cultural attribute than a religious one. Most of the Ahadith and Quranic verses are quoted without basic understanding specially by Ulima who have absolutely no knowledge or research to their domain. A man who indulges in prostitution looses the right to demand things from his wife morally, since he is unfaithful. And Islam gives the right to women to file for divorce in such cases as well. Islam does not permit the man to perform such harsh and cruel sexual assaults on his wife anywhere. As these acts are a result of frustration and sick mindedness that are observed in the porn industry as well as shared by such people in close gatherings. And lack of opportunity forces these men to try out such activities at home with their wives. Where as in practice no religion in the world allows a husband and wife to step beyond certain parameters in their physical relationship for the very same reason. The media has also played a very important role in this so called modernization of the society. What no one realizes is that the transitory phase we are currently going through has been adapted hastily which has resulted in a social divide since the majority of the people in this region were living in 1800s. If you try to change a person or make something socially acceptable in just 5 years to such an extent, then this is exactly what is expected to be the outcome. Educating people and creating awareness in the society is the only solution to this problem. Recommend

  • Sourabh Tiwary

    The above article is concerning the rights of a women. Why bring your misogynistic views here.Recommend

  • Sourabh Tiwary

    The idea of modesty is different because people living in different parts of the world have different cultural upbringings, intellectual capacity and history. In the end, modesty really means nothing because it changes with person to person and therefore has no inherent strength. Recommend

  • vigilant

    If read this Article in context of news about Pakistan being on top for searching word “SEX” then what will happen if author’s suggestions will be enforced completely…..i can imagine crashing of Google servers with crazy words…….. :)Recommend

  • The Critique

    I think the blogger is really confused in what she is trying to say. Islam, being the state religion is very clear on this and can sahi bukhari hadith stated in the blog is the testament to it.

    I firmly believe that such pieces should never be printed by ET.Recommend

  • Lt Col Imtiaz Alam (retd)

    Islam gives a away out for the Women, she can always ask for Khula. With so many Women Organizations working for the Women’s Right she can turn to them if her family is in the way.Please do not mock or jest with Allah’s Laws. Do not test Providence. And Allah knows best.Recommend

  • Amir Waynmir

    If you dont look well please write something goodRecommend

  • Sadia

    @Lt Col Imtiaz Alam (retd): Sir, please talk about reality of human relationships in our society, You are talking as if all women at the first place are able to marry the person they like or want to and all their other rights are granted. For Sake! we live in a country where man and his family even consider it an insult to pay meher or even if it is paid it is expected of wife to return! What Islam are you talking about? The one written in sacred books or the one practised by Pakistani society? The society that majorly doesn’t allow ‘love marriage’ should not talk about giving rights to even men, doesn’t even count women!Recommend

  • Irshad Khan

    It is a sophisticated thinking, but at the same time a useless discussion in a country, where-in mostly women are considered as slaves rather like an animal for the use of men whatever way he likes.Recommend

  • noman

    its is really nice blog.i live in Pakistan.this problem is not only in Pakistan but in south Asia as i feel.the reasons are illiteracy,sexual frustration and week laws and the negligence of law enforcement agencies and courtsRecommend

  • Shahzad Khan

    If poor man is not allowed to satisfy his sexual urges even after marriage then you are opening ways for extra marital affairs. I think Extra marital affair is a far more huge sin then topic of your article.Recommend

  • http://...

    @Farah Kamal:
    so what is the purpose of marriage then????Recommend

  • Mahreen Saeed

    Nice Effort!!!! very bold article but this is a reality of our country. No body has given right to men to do sex forcefully. Men should understand that she is your wife not a servant or animal. Our religion promotes lesson of peace, Love and kindness. So why mens behaves in this manner???? Recommend

  • Mahreen Saeed

    i want to ask men when they have wives than why they go for extra marital affairs???
    is dat fair with wives???Recommend

  • Abdul Haseeb

    If u think that religion is not for “educated” or “liberals” like you than why don’t you just change your religion rather than changing the religionRecommend

  • yousaf

    Ali Tanoli I love you for your thought perverting comments! You are a wonderful guy and to read your extempore writings is always a treatRecommend

  • chocolate

    @Atif: ya you are so right about belly and bikni but dear one thing is common all over the world and that is HUMAN VALUES & Basic HUMAN RIGHTS .. forcing some one to have sex against his or her wish is against the basic human right of that person Recommend

  • chocolate

    @Arooj Faheem: so sad that a GIRL calling haveing sex with husband a DUTY . last time i check sex is something that gives pleasure . if someone don’t want to have sex he or she cannot have pleasure so this kills whole purpose of having sex. how a woman will satisfy her partner sexually if she is not feeling like having sex? men in our society is so frustrated that they dont care whether their partner is showing any interest or not while having sex its same like having sex with a dead body Recommend

  • chocolate

    you mean people get married just for sex? what a sick mentalityRecommend

  • Radians

    what intrigues me the most is these people’s stupid understanding of religion!…as if they are qualified to even open their mouths about these matters…imagine a 5th grader critiquing the most complex texts of secular law, without being aware of any of the prerequisites…anyway, it is not martial rape miss ‘i-have-understood-it-all’…marriage is primarily enacted to give way for both the man and the woman to satisfy their sexual desires in and to continue human generation!…so that they don’t even go near to haraam stuff. for that purpose, as far as I know…when men are commanded to be gentle and kind with their wives and fulfill all of their needs, Islam asks woman to be dutiful and understanding towards their husband’s sexual needs…and yes if a man has an urgency and there is no other way but to do haraam, he can use force to satisfy him. and same is the case for even WOMEN!! why did you forget to mention that? she can also use force to satisfy herself from her husband, because thats why she married him!…but the bottom line is, that over all the Islamic paradigm is that one should not do so if there’s a genuine problem with their spouses. and be patient. but exceptions are always there, and people will always misuse the general rules. and men here will agree with me in that generally we do have only sex on our minds…and it’s not even our fault…it’s just the way we are.

    so if a husband is giving her wife food, shelter, bearing all of her medical charges etc, then the wife also should respect his sentiments and should develop a desire to satisfy his sexual needs…and that’s all…she’s not even forced to cook food or to serve the husband’s family…according to shariah. only that if the husband feels a desire to engage with her(except in her cycles, thats haram), she should fulfill it.Recommend

  • Bina Shah
  • Jordan

    Wow… just wow. Cannot believe that commenters are actually trying to justify rape here. Rape is sexual intercourse or attempted sexual intercourse undertaken without the consent of either party, end of. There are no ‘if’s’ or ‘but’s’. A person’s right to their own body is universal and no 2000 year old book can change that. Also the people saying ‘Oh, but the women can divorce or do this… blah blah’ … What?! The point is, she should not have been raped in the first place. If the man’s ‘needs’ are not being fufilled, he also has the option of divorce no? Surely a more moral outcome than phsically forcing someone against their will to submit to your sordid desires.Recommend

  • Sana Iqbal

    Well Well! For the men, Surah Nisa is very clear on this matter where it is categorically mentioned that a male is NOT allowed to go near the woman in his nikah if she is not willing.
    As for the angels cursing thingy is concerned, I think thats the matter between the angels and the woman herself, and it should not be of anybody else’s concern. And if for some reason, anyone is really concerned about the poor woman being cursed by the angels, kindly do NOT force her into a situation that leads her to such situations.

  • Qw1

    Since when have traditional pakistani marriages been about love and respect?
    Its about getting the guy laid and getting the girl out of the house so she’s not a burden to the family. Lets call a spade a spade, majority of newly wed women do not have sex or make love on their first night, they are flat out raped. Recommend

  • Adnan Khan

    The concept of “marital rape” was introduced by butch lesbian feminists like Naomi Wolfe and Andrea Dworkin. And they didn’t stop there. They claim that any penetrative sexual relations should be termed as rape.
    Young Pakistani girls, who have read neither the Quran, nor studied the Hadith, let alone the injunctions of Shariah, are easy marks for the lesbian/feminist literature/agenda. All sorts of rubbish is filled into their unsowed fertile minds and then they feel obliged to regurgitate that nonsense here.
    If you are a Muslim, read-up on your rights and obligations under your faith. Both men and women. Then you won’t be taken-in by every new western fad prescribed by butch lesbiansRecommend

  • Maria

    actually no, beating your wife only and only if she’s getting out of control and having extramarital affairs. And that too, the level of the beating is compared to taking a twig and hitting her with that. Does that hurt? No. It’s just to get a point across.
    Besides, there are three stages to that ayat you’re quoting. First, verbal admonishment, second, leaving the bedroom, and if it STILL has no effect, then that. And it also says ahead, that there are to be no bruise marks or any abuse because Allah is watching.

    Please do not quote out of context. You completely distort the whole meaning. Much like the article above with it’s usage of the Hadith.

    If you’re going to quote a Hadith, at least have the decency to refer to Tafseer. Islam does not support abuse of any rights in any form. Recommend

  • vigilant

    Plz read full statement before removing my comments……….

    Lets do What-if Scenario Analysis of Author’s Statement:

    “The truth is simple. When you force a woman to have sex with you – its rape. It does not matter whether the victim is married to you or not because no one deserves such brutality”

    a- If one’s spouse is not willing to have sex but he lures his spouse by flattering or begging or offering reward (lets say shopping) & succeed……would this be called Rape??? even after having sex his spouse regrets it…..

    b- If one’s spouse is not willing to have sex but he does that forcefully…… but after sex his spouse liked it (lets say as innovation)…….would this be called Rape???

    c- Most women belonging to rural families got alot of medical issues after having one or two kids due lack of pregnancy awarness or neglect….so it means the only entertainment of those men will end after nearly 3 years of marriage……because author termed sex with ill wife as Rape……???

    d- Or assaulting some-one during sex & damaging one’s spouse bodies would be called Rape……???

    In my Opinion forcing some-one for sex in marital wed-lock & damaging their bodies should be tried under Laws deviced for curbing Domestic Violence instead of Rape……it would be more effective & helpful in terms of religious or moral values……… & secondly proving Rape in Marital wed-lock is very difficult even in western countries where police & Law Enforcement agencies are using best available resources…….

    Lastly as in Pakistan with limited resources for prosecution & least effective law enforcement agencies it would be better if we create awarness among people about it……..cheerzRecommend

  • Xaheer

    I am not an extremist nor that liberal But all I know that this Topic completely Destroyed the relation of a Man & Wife, and for sure baffle their mind, Your ending was completely farce denying the Islamic laws by giving your own verdict, Illiteracy is a root cause, My question is how many cases you have seen in educated class?? And do you think that the western culture has no influential role in it??

    1920 first Bikini show was arranged in Miami FL US, culture of porn movies started in 1960 with the first movie named “Deep throat”.

    My point of view is that women has a lot of respect in Islam and we all know which Lobby is working against Islam, I bet you do know Miss Aneka.

    We all know about the culture of doing Sex in our society, Even if you are married or a spinster. Mutual understanding says a lot, In Quran its written “Men’s are to govern outside and Women’s are to govern their home”.

    I am with the subject to give all the proper rights to women which she really deserves but hypothesis of your article is completely opposite to the reality and hardly imply in any Islamic state i.e. KSA, Bahrain, Kuwait etc.

    In Islam Adult girl has a full right to choose her spouse.

    In Islam for women it is obligatory to remain in “Purdah” as this saves her from many sins and cruel eyes.

    Rights of women in Islam are many but I will quote few….
    1) The protection from wrong accusation
    2) Property Rights
    3) Right of Inheritance
    4) Right of Maintenance (Her Monthly expense from Husband)
    5) Right of Dower
    6) Right to choose a spouse
    7) Polygamy with her consent
    8) Right of Divorce

    Now these are the basic principles which Islam has given to a women and I stand for a women right and her respect according to the Islamic teachings.

    Now my answer to you is that you should “Curse the System not the Religion”.Recommend

  • A Muslim

    No matter how much liberal I think I am, I will NEVER EVER dare to call any Hadith as “outdated”, Being un-authentic is another issue. But My religion defines the boundary for my liberal thoughtsRecommend

  • Muhammad Hanif

    Well all what i have understand that is Mariage is the licence to fulfill ur need of Sex. now if u call it rape that doesnt make sence because u have the legal right of sexual intercourse with ur wife, but it is good to have mutual understanding in all matters between the couples. but you can not compare a marital relation with any other relation like there is no question about the case when u r not maried that is Haraam.Recommend

  • saleem

    Very good article.The issue wit us as a nation is we start becoming muslims when laws are discussed. Religion has nothing to do with the state as said by Quaid e azam,Therefore the stupid objective resolution was passed after his death .Therefore we as Pakistanis should have laws that are equal for all citizens. The hadith, sharia, the gospel , the ramayan has nothing to do in the court of law Recommend

  • Katarina

    If this 28 year old has worked day and night to get sex it would be better to buy a sex toy or use prostitutes. A wife is not her husbands sex slave. She has the right to refuse and if the husband takes her by force it is rape, as simple as that. The definition of rape (wikipedia) is: “Rape is a type of sexual assault usually involving sexual intercourse, which is initiated by one or more persons against another person without that person’s consent. The act may be carried out by physical force, coercion, abuse of authority or with a person who is incapable of valid consent.” It does not matter if the woman is married to the rapist or not. Recommend

  • Romm

    It’ Blasphemous.
    Holy Prophet (PBUH) married Hazrat Ayesha when she was 13 years old, some Ulema say she was 9 when given into Nikah of PBUH. so, Islam gives Men the prerogative to use women for pleasure. It’s not our Job to decide what is right or wrong… if Allah gave this right and we contest that, we are commiting Sin… Pls don’t provoke thoughts of People in wrong directions… May Allah Guide you..Recommend

  • Hammad

    So Aneka Chohan! please please please tell my wife not to mourn or put allegations on me that I have been cheating on her, because if I have an urge and I get a refusal after almost every time because my very modern urbanized and “activist” wife founds her self too busy in her professional life I will go out and get a woman who does not consider it rape (within or without the bond of marriage).Recommend

  • Think_Tank

    To know the truth, read and understand the Quraan. There is a great desire in women to stand up for their rights, but do you even know your God given rights? From the first few surahs in the Quraan you can get a good idea. Im not claiming that men are always right and a wife is her husband’s property, but our religion itself has it kind of this way. Husbands do get the right to even ‘beat’ their wives if they find them to be misbehaving / unfaithful. The ‘mutha’, or short term marriage served as a sexual frustration reliever for men while on war, obviously with women other than their long term wives. Most references to property rights for women in the Quran are usually half or two-thirds of what men are allowed.

    In today’ day and age it may sound unfair on women, but thats how all major religions are. In Israel, the far right Jews throw stones at secondary school going girls as their religion does not permit girls to get educated or go out of thier houses without being fully covered. (check out Guardian or any Israeli Newpaper for reference)

    Like living in Pakistan could be a daily near death experience, accept what the scripts say woman. Or if you take religion out completley and talk about the ethical / social / moral side of the coin, then you are 100% right. The couple should have enough understanding to be able to work these kind of things out, without having to visit doctors for diseases.

    That is why I guess being a Muslim means to Submit. If you understand the Quraan, not just read it, many things may come to you as a surprise. Recommend

  • Ali Tanoli

    U well come for your perverting message sir.
    Maam in that case why women are bothers to married men they just used the rubber toys.Recommend

  • Raja Islam

    In the West marital rape is a crime. However, I believe that this is not right. We should differentiate between abuse and sex. Having sex with his wife is a husbands right. Abusing her is not. The shoe may be on the other foot. What if a woman is abusive and forces her husband to have sex with her whether he wants to or not? Should this be considered a crime?Recommend

  • For Ms.Chohan

    A very well written & in need article; highlighting other prevalent issues than energy crisis. My only request is to use Hadith & Quranic verse very carefully. Since, most of us just want to get away from religion; waiting for a lame reason. In addition, just whenever we quote some scientific law. at first thorough research is done so that noone can challenge its authenticity & relationship with the article. The same goes with Quran & Hadith my dear writer. :


  • Magna

    I am male married for 4 years now. One simple thing. If you really love your wife you’ll not do something she doesn’t like. If you force yourself on her against her wish, you are hurting her both physically and mentally. FORCED SEX IN MARRIAGE IS EXPLOITATION. PERIOD. Recommend