Marital Rape – fair or unfair?
A husband raping his own wife, does this even make any sense? It does! And it’s called ‘marital rape’, which unfortunately is a social taboo, and no one has the guts to openly discuss about it. Apparently, once legally declared as someone’s wife; the woman is expected to oblige to her husband’s sexual desires, whenever they may arise. Her consent doesn’t hold any importance, all it matters is saying ‘yes’ to having sex even when the spur of intimacy isn’t present. The sad thing is, a majority of the women suffering from marital rape aren’t even aware of it. How is that possible? Read on to find out!
The dutiful wife
We are part of a culture where the necessity of being an obedient wife is fed into girls’ minds from a tender age. No wonder, the existence of marital rape is unimaginable for many. A lot of women feel that it is their duty to compromise and give in to the husband’s demands in order to ensure his happiness and lead a blissful marriage. They believe that turning him down when his sexual drive is high will lead him to fulfill his desire elsewhere. Nonetheless, if the man does get involved in an extra-marital affair for whatever reason, the wife will be blamed for not being able to satisfy him in bed. How logical is that?
Because the religion says so
Another misconception that serves as a reason for the wife to be raped by her husband is our religious beliefs. Refusing husbands for physical intimacy is considered unjust, and even if he does force himself upon the wife, how can it be termed as rape when sexual pleasure is his right in the light of religion? Besides, we have often heard of angels spending the whole night cursing the wife who refuses sex to her husband. However, the truth is that Islam does not promote the endurance of such physical and emotional torture at all.
“The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: ‘Be kind to women.’”(Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 3153; Muslim, 1468).
Marital rape and health risks
Women usually don’t raise their voices against marital rape, but if someone does, they are being tortured or punished severely. Men take this “no” as a shame and insult.
Pakistani doctors revealed that vaginal tears and infections are the common complaints registered by the victims every other day. They suggest them to prevent sexual intercourse during the treatment, but their husbands refuse to cooperate. As a result, these infections lead to miserable diseases.
Many women have to undergo multiple abortion surgeries due to unplanned pregnancy. In fact, they are even willing to try out complicated contraceptive methods, that are even prohibited in some religions. These methods usually cause abnormalities in reproductive system, and thus many females lose their lives while giving birth because of it. Normally, upon asking, victims express that their husbands find it insulting to use condoms or any other birth-control method. How manly is that? Is this what Islam peaches?
“…And live with them in kindness…” (Quran 4:19)
And here is a hadith which shows how a man should treat his woman
“The most perfect of believers in belief is the best of them in character. The best of you are those who are the best to their women.”
What law has to say about it?
In 2007, a law against marital rape was amended, in which this act was declared offensive and inhumane. Unfortunately, no cases have been reported till date.
Lack of education is the main reason behind this barbaric act. Pakistani men and women, hesitate to talk on this issue because it is considered as “private” , and thus the damage. No religion in the World teaches to treat women as sex objects, not even Islam.
In a survey of women in Islamabad and Rawalpindi, about 97% women have accepted being subjected to domestic violence by their husbands,
The study, conducted in 2003 in Islamabad and Rawalpindi, assessed domestic violence within a marital setting. A questionnaire was filled by 216 married women and a question regarding non-consensual sex was also asked. Out of the total respondents, 96.8% said that they have experienced some form of domestic violence in which being yelled at by their spouses was the most common one.
Almost half the women in Islamabad and Rawalpindi have reported to being forced into sexual activity by their husbands while no cases ever reach the courts.
It’s time that women wake up and understand their own rights as a wife and over their bodies. Nothing is more important than self-respect and dignity. Women consent in such an intimate matter should not be ignored because they have emotions too. Say “no!” to forced sex. Respect yourself and the world will follow!