I am aware of the great importance our religion places on being mindful of our duties towards the parents and that one is discouraged from even saying even 'uff' (expression of being disappointed in some burdensome task or painful experience) to them. But could you please let me know as to what is our religion's stance in the following situation.
I live in a joint family and my mother in law and father in law are extremely unreasonable, interfering and hurtful towards me. My husband is extremely obedient towards his parents and never argues or talks back to his parents always saying that it's not allowed in our religion. I complain about my in-laws treatment to my husband but he always shrugs it off as my being too sensitive. The siblings of my husband talk back to their parents and so they are cautious in the way they treat them but with my husband since they know that he will never retaliate, they always make him the scapegoat of venting out whatever anger and frustrations they possess. They also mete out a similar treatment to me. What is even more hurting is that they would talk like that to me in front of my husband and still my husband wouldn't say anything to defend me because of which they have become all the more gutsy. To add to my dilemma when I tell my husband about it in private he denies hearing or seeing the way they behaved with me. I am at a total loss. I tell my husband that the least he can do is talk to them and tell them to behave properly with me but he says that he cannot be rude to his parents. I tell him that he does not need to be rude but explain gently to them but he says he knows his parents and that they wouldn't understand without becoming emotional and his talking loudly to them. I tell him then he should at least show his disapproval of the way they treat me and should be reserved with them but he does not even do that and keeps behaving normally and very lovingly with them.
Please advise what I should do and what are the rights of wives on the husbands when placed in such a situation by parents. I would also like to mention that my husband doesn't yet have enough means to keep me separately and so we are staying in the joint family.
Islam very emphatically exhorts its adherents to treating their wives with all justice and requires them to offer them physical, financial, moral and psychological support. One must not side with any party on the expense of justice and equality. If your in-laws are not treating you properly, your husband needs to talk to them very humbly and politely and ask them to adopt a reasonable approach. You are supposed to remain obedient to your husband and respectful to your in-laws, nonetheless. Your husband has to consider that he has taken the responsibility of fulfilling your rights, and as such has the duty to not let you suffer at the hands of any person. He needs to provide you with an independent residence if it is not agreeable to you to live in a joint family system. But if he does not have any way out despite his working real hard to achieve this target then you may think of other ways to tackle the situation. That would mean your cooperation and help to your husband in getting out of this difficult situation.
You may try to explain to yourself that if they are harsh with him, he is their son and if they are unreasonable with you, let them feel that it does not bother you. To continue to complain would perhaps not bring the matter to a desirable solution. You can only ask your husband not to respond to them when they are in anger but talk to them in a very polite manner when their anger has subsided. The best approach is that of compliance and forbearance. Keeping the family relationship should be our top most priority and for this we should go as far as we can. It would be better if you continued behaving nicely with them.
All efforts and all plans and calculated behavior are prone to failure if we do not pray to the Almighty and ask for His approval and beseech Him for His mercy. All matters are in His hands and we can file our petitions with Him through supplications and prayers. With all trust and confidence in our Lord we should turn to Him. Therefore, turn to your God and seek His reassurance, ask for His pleasure and beg for His mercy.