The customary practice where wives are subjected to avoidable stress of cooking, washing and serving delicacies at family occasions needs a review.

The woman is no slave – not to her man nor to his kinsmen. Her domestication at home is rather a show of obedience to her Lord, and then to her love. This she discharges with a high degree of passion because she knows it’s her responsibility and will be correspondingly rewarded. The woman bars all obstacles to put foods on the table for her heartthrob, cares for the kids irrespective of their number, tidies up the house among many. All these cum numberless others no rational woman would controvert. May Allah keep strengthening them.

Obligating the woman to do at occasions what she does at home is not only barbaric but unfair. This is why women who do not have the energy to carry out such tasks are usually labelled with arrogance or indolence, and the fight that accompanies that is always lamentably indellible.

While some families have oozed out of this primitive style, many – including ones with societal influence and affluence – have obstinately refused to be grow in thinking and develop in maturity. It’s appalling too that women who may never accept same from their in-laws are inhumanly subjecting their brothers’ wives to that which they hate to do. Some are so disgustingly hell bent that you wonder if there is some scriptural dictate attributable to the practice. What injustice!

Ileya is a day of festivity: a day to be happy. The succeeding days – Ayyaamut-Tashreeq – are days for everyone to rejoice and enjoy. Why then subject the woman to saddening stress? She goes to the parents-in-law only to be worked up via cooking of foods, fetching of water (heavily carried on the head), washing of plates, serving visitors etc., whereas all these may be contracted to a local caterer (olópò) under the supervision of the wives. This is dignifying. That’s how queens should be treated.

There should be a reflection of civilisation in the education we passed through at school. We should move on, not stationary like a statue. Gone are the days of cooking with firewood. Everyone now does gas. The practice of subjecting women to the stress of cooking for occasions should be jettisoned forthwith. There are innumerable olópòs that would do it much better than the wives and a token given to them for the service rendered.

However, where this barbarism is the day’s order in your husband’s family, you’ve got to calm down and be obedient. Efforts may be made through your husband to correct the practice, not you fronting like a Messiah.


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