by Fudia Muhammad
You can determine the true character of a man by how he treats the women and girls in his life, especially his wife. It is reported that Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said, “The best among you is the best towards his wife.” A key element that cannot be overlooked during pregnancy is the relationship between the mother and the baby’s father; ideally also her husband. If our desire is to give birth to a god, there is no denying that the mother must have a strong connection with the baby growing inside of her; but the quality of that relationship oftentimes is dependent upon how she feels about the baby’s father and how he feels about her.
How a man treats his wife while she is pregnant with his future is critical to both the mother and the child’s sense of peace and security. It is essential to the child’s willingness or even ability to bond with the father once he or she is born. Naturally, it is difficult for most men to even imagine what their wife is going through physically and emotionally as the baby grows within. But consider that a pregnant woman should be handled with the same care that one would give to a million dollar crystal vase as it is being prepared to be packed for a long distance journey. She is infinitely more valuable and must be protected as such; mentally and physically at all times. After all, it is her thoughts and desires that are forming the brain of her child. So every effort must be made to keep her happy, peaceful and secure throughout the duration of her pregnancy.
While every woman is different; therefore, every pregnancy is different – there is a high probability that the most demanding time during her pregnancy will be during the first trimester and again during the final trimester. Remember that during the first couple of months of pregnancy, her body is adjusting to what it initially interprets to be an intruder. The body naturally goes into overdrive trying to expel the foreign object. This causes many women to become nauseated to the point of vomiting. Some experience extreme exhaustion, have serious food cravings and aversions without warning, urinate frequently and have big emotional swings. In addition, first-time mothers are usually nervous about labor and delivery and may even question whether or not they will be good parents.
Great consideration must be given to the physical changes that occur during pregnancy. The second trimester is typically a lot smoother for many women. But as mothers begin to near the last couple of months of pregnancy some of the same symptoms may reoccur but in addition, the mother is now carrying extra weight which makes her move slower. Her feet and ankles may swell and nights may be uncomfortable and restless. Her lower back may ache and the only thing on her mind will be getting that baby out of her as soon as possible. A father’s patience will definitely be tried; but she will need him to rise to the occasion. A test of a man’s true love, discipline and understanding of the sacredness of the female is how he handles his wife during this most trying time.
The absolute worst thing that a man can ever do is to abuse a woman. But to abuse her while she is pregnant is ten times as heinous and potentially irreparable. The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan asked: “How can you live in fear in a home and produce the right kind of offspring? How can you live under that kind of tyranny and produce children who recognize what love is and what justice is and what mercy is and what tenderness is? You are producing wicked children because you live under environmental circumstances that make you able to produce a devil.”
Remember that a crime against a woman is a crime against humanity and it is almost an unpardonable sin. Physically abusing a woman in any condition is intolerable, but when a man abuses a pregnant woman physically or verbally (which sometimes can be worse), he may have sealed his fate when it comes to his children. The woman’s fear turns into an indescribable hatred for him. She can easily give birth to a child born hating the father. The abandonment, disrespect, harsh words, abuse, the tears shed, and overall mistreatment she had to endure from him throughout the pregnancy will result in the father having an improbable relationship with the child. The father will wonder why his child distances himself; why he/she cries when left alone with him; and why the last thing he or she wants when older is anything to do with their father. The woman has the power to pass on love as well as hate from the womb, based on what she is experiencing.
Therefore, the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan reminded us why the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad made it against the law for a Brother to strike his wife: “He put us out of the society for ninety days for the first offense, six months for the second offense. Because it is wrong, wrong, wrong for a man to beat a woman. I say it again, it is wrong, wrong, wrong for a man to beat a woman. Why is it wrong for you to beat a woman? The Honorable Elijah Muhammad says when you teach a man you teach an individual; when you teach a woman you teach a Nation. When you beat a man you beat an individual. When you beat a woman, fool, you beat a Nation. You must think about your actions and the consequences thereof. The beating of our wives, the abusing of ourselves, is forbidden by God.”
Needless to say, the last thing a pregnant woman who is trying to give birth to a god needs is a weak, insensitive husband. Though the woman is the one who has to carry the child in her womb, she should not go through the joys and struggles of pregnancy alone. Her husband should be right there with her letting her know how much she is loved and what an honor it is that she is the mother of his child. Every day, ask her how she feels and what can be done for her. Rub her swollen feet and massage her aching back. Walk next to her proudly, hand-in-hand; because as Minister Farrakhan put it, she is in the most beautiful stage of her life.
The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan also reminds the brothers: As your wife is losing shape, you must now build up her mind and protect her from harmful influences – this takes a strong, loving man. She needs to be encouraged to do right. As the maintainer of his wife, the man should care about his wife doing the proper things during pregnancy. He should make sure his wife is praying, talking to the baby, reading to the baby, eating right, exercising and staying away from negativity. Since she should not go to the movies, then he shouldn’t either; since she should not watch violence and foolishness on the television, he should make sure that it is not on the screen when she is home. The father should also talk to the baby every day and shower love on him or her while gently rubbing his wife’s stomach. If there are other children, they too should shower love on the new life before he or she is born; building closeness between the siblings early on.
Arguing with your wife once or twice; causing her to have a couple of bad thoughts may not doom your future entirely. But what is being stressed here is the length and magnitude of each instance. The father’s influence on the natural inclinations of his newborn baby will be impactful in the most positive way if he masters how to handle the woman’s mind, not just her body. Brothers: Love your wife and take good care of her and your child will love and honor you immeasurably.
(Sister Fudia Muhammad is a member of Muhammad Mosque No. 64 in Austin, Texas. She is married to Student Minister Robert L. Muhammad and they have been blessed with four children. Sister Fudia holds a Master’s degree in Education – she is a writer, an educator and an advocate for God-centered child-rearing.)