How to Deal with Toxic Parents – Islamic Perspective
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Publié le 24 octobre 2022, par Samir | 13 h 23 min
Temps de lecture : 5 minutes
Toxic parent-child relationships can be emotionally and mentally challenging, affecting one’s overall well-being. In Islam, the family unit holds great significance, and maintaining healthy relationships, especially with parents, is emphasized. This article explores the Islamic perspective on dealing with toxic parents, offering insights and guidance for those facing such difficulties.
Understanding Toxic Parents in Islam:
In Islam, parents are revered, and their rights are emphasized. However, this doesn’t mean parents can engage in toxic behavior without consequences. Toxic behavior may manifest as emotional manipulation, verbal abuse, neglect, or imposing unrealistic expectations on their children. While Islam encourages respect and kindness towards parents, it also promotes self-preservation and mental well-being.
Hadith for Parents:
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) emphasized the significance of parents in Islam through numerous Hadiths. Here are a few that highlight the importance of respecting and caring for parents:
Abu Huraira (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said, « Let him be humbled into dust; let him be humbled into dust. It was said, ‘O Allah’s Messenger! Who is he?’ He said, ‘He who does not show mercy to the people will not be shown mercy by Allah.' » (Sahih al-Bukhari)
Mothers in Islam:
Islam places a special emphasis on the status of mothers. Mothers are honored and respected for their role in nurturing and raising children. The Quran and Hadith highlight the significance of mothers’ love and care.
Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) reported: A man asked the Prophet (peace be upon him), « Whom should I honor most? » The Prophet replied, « Your mother. » The man asked, « Who is next? » The Prophet said, « Your mother. » The man further asked, « Who is next? » The Prophet said, « Your mother. » The man asked for the fourth time, « Who is next? » The Prophet said, « Your father. » (Sahih al-Bukhari)
Identifying a Toxic Parent:
Recognizing toxic behavior is the first step in addressing it. A toxic parent may exhibit controlling behavior, dismissive attitudes, constant criticism, or emotional manipulation. Islamic teachings advocate for mutual respect and understanding between parents and children but do not endorse abuse or harm.
How to Deal with Toxic Parents – Islamic Perspective
Toxicity among parents is a topic that is least discussed in Islamic books. Although parents hold significant importance in every world culture, we cannot deny some facts related to toxic parenting. Several children suffer from toxic parenting, negatively impacting their mental and emotional health.
As parents, we sometimes become too self-centered and ignore our children’s desires. We make decisions in favor of our children’s sentiments. Toxic parents practice unhealthy parenting decisions and leave a wrong impression on their kids. They might ruin a child’s life and stop trusting the parent-child affection.
Toxicity among parents is hard to stop unless they admit their negative behaviors and try eliminating them. Children always looking for love and affection might feel hurt and abused when dealing with such parents. But they cannot control this negativity; instead, they can learn to control their emotional reactions to toxicity.
We have listed a few ways a child can deal with toxic parents and manage their reactions:
1. Show kindness and empathy
It might be easier said than done when you have extremely controlling parents, but Islam emphasizes respecting our parents at all costs. They have given birth and experienced struggles to raise us; hence, we must take care of and obey them. Their negative behavior should not make you resentful towards them. Instead, show them kindness and empathize with them. Indeed, Allah SWT knows the best.
Allah SWT says in the Holy Qur’an: « And We have enjoined (upon) man for his parents – carried him his mother (in) weakness upon weakness, and his weaning (is) in two years that Be grateful to your parents and Me; towards Me (is) the destination. » [Surah Luqman v:14]
2. Accompany them in seeking help
It is okay to take matters to some seniors in the family if the toxicity goes beyond control. Seeking help from trustworthy people can make the situation more manageable, particularly if things become violent or abusive. Speak to an elderly family member everyone looks up to for family decisions. Talk to an unbiased person who can look into the matter without judgment.
Communication makes situations easier to deal with, and you might come to a productive outcome.
3. Start a conversation
Toxic parents might be difficult to deal with. In such situations, you have to challenge them or start a conversation. Remember, they are your parents; you can not disrespect them. Put across your points and make them understand your perspective on a subject. A healthy conversation might help you get a positive outcome for something you want them to accept.
Communication with an open and transparent mind helps deal with toxic parents who will not listen to your opinion otherwise.
4. Remember them in your prayers.
Understanding your parents’ situation is also essential. Their negative behavior might be due to some unfair incidents in the past that led to a trace of bitterness in their personality. Even if they do not act gently with you, you must show empathy and pray for them as a child.
Allah SWT teaches us a prayer for our parents in the Holy Qur’an:
« My Lord, have mercy upon them as they brought me up [when I was] small. »
The more you pray for your parents, the more Allah SWT will console your heart. Trust in Allah SWT’s mercy, and He will remove your distress.
It is tough to deal with toxicity, mainly if it comes from your parents. You might encounter traumatizing moments while dealing with negative patterns. But trust in Allah SWT and His mercy. Sometimes, He tests us with specific difficulties, but we must become stronger. Seek Allah SWT’s help and ask Him for patience and guidance to deal with toxic situations.
Islam places great importance on maintaining positive relationships, especially within the family. However, toxic behaviors cannot be condoned under the guise of respect for parents. Balancing parental rights with self-preservation is a delicate task, guided by principles of kindness, respect, patience, and personal boundaries. By seeking support from Islamic teachings and professional resources, individuals can navigate toxic parent-child relationships in a way that preserves their mental and emotional well-being.
May Allah help us all.
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