High Rate of Divorce in Malaysia

A Social Ill in Malaysia: Causes and Remedies
The family is the keyword of my assignment. The family is considered as the basic unit of any civilization on the earth. In Islam, the family is the foundation of the Islamic society. So, the strength of the Islamic society is gained mainly from the strength of the basic unit of its formation i.e. the family. Oxford dictionary defines the word family as a
group consisting of two parents and their children living together as a unit. Therefore, we can deduce that any defect in the institution of the family leads into breaking down the unit in which will lead to a disaster in the society as a whole. The word divorce is the second keyword of my assignment. Oxford dictionary defines divorce as the legal dissolution of a marriage. So, divorce is the end of family life. If the institution of the family is attacked by any plague, and the plague was not cured at the shortest time possible, then the family is facing a trouble amongst its members. Divorce occurs when the plague is uncured and it continues to swell. Islam allows divorce in the case of unsolvable problems between

the spouses unlike Christianity that prohibits divorce. The divorce as a solution to resolve the family is a mercy to both spouses in order to stop the continuous suffering of the family. Thus, both spouses may have better life with another partner. Moreover, Allah has permitted divorce and it is the most hatred non-prohibited action to Him. Divorce existed since the inception of human life. And it is found in every society. But the percentage of divorce varies from a society to another due to the way of life in the particular society and other living factors. Malaysia witnesses a gigantic growth in both its economical and social lives. As a result of the growth the trend of life of the Malaysian people has changed. This led to positive and negative consequences. Malaysia has a very high percentage of divorce. The average of divorce cases based on statistics reaches to 20% per year1. Moreover, the majority of the divorce cases happen to be amongst the Muslims2. This alarms the Muslim scholars as well as the political leaders in the society to find out the causes of the high rate of divorce as well as establishing the
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Zeenah Kausar, 2005. Social Ills in Malaysia causes and remedies. IIUM Zeenah Kausar, 2005. Social Ills in Malaysia causes and remedies. IIUM

best practiced remedies to those causes so as to save the society from a great collapse in its social structure. According to Kaussar, (2005). “The most important reason that is attributed to the problem of divorce among Muslims is the ignorance of the type of relationship that Islam envisages for married couples”3. So, not understanding of Islam and weakness of faith played a major role in increasing the percentage of divorce in the society. Therefore, not abiding by the Islamic teachings and the deep ignorance of the Islamic instructions by the married couples lead to divorce. Furthermore, neglecting the tradition, values and moral in exchange for modernity exacerbate the problem. People emulate anyone comes on the TV or appears on the magazines just because he/she is a model. This blind emulation by the people causes several problems between the spouses. For instance the husband wants his wife to behave in such a way that is immoral because he just saw actor X doing it and vice versa. In addition, the ‘poor parenting skills’ proves to be an important factor leads to divorce. Since both the father and mother do not know how to bring up their children as well as not knowing the roles of each one towards the house. Usually, the spouses send their kids to the kindergarten to bring them up. But no one guarantees that the babysitters would raise the kids up in the proper way that the parents are looking for. Thus, problems between the husband and wife will explode and they start to blame each other. In fact, the ‘poor parenting skills’ is a consequence of the working father and mother in general. Both do not have the free time to spend with each other or with their kids. As a result, the family life will change to a materialistic life wherein love does not exist and harmony is lost. Moreover, Social pressure on a girl to get married early or to force her to marry someone she does not like or she is incompatible with lead to the divorce too. In addition to the rapid spread of the drug addicts amongst the Malaysian guys. Many cases of divorces were because the husband is a drug addict and the wife cannot live with such ill person.

Zeenah Kausar, 2005. Social Ills in Malaysia causes and remedies. IIUM

She fears of her life and her kids’ lives as well, because he might get crazy at anytime and kill them. In the same way, many Malaysia men depend on the women to get them the money. This irritates the women of the society because they keep working and taking care of the kids as well as taking care of the man of the house who is supposed to work and feed the family. So, the wife prefers in this case to have her own house and spend her money on herself and her kids. One more factor which is considered international i.e. the financial problems. Many Malaysian are still poor -as is in any society- and they cannot offer the suitable life to their family. That might be because of the previous mentioned reasons or that their “AlRizq” (‫ )ا زق‬is not adequate to feed the family. Furthermore, it is found that families of more than five members are living in a small house. This destroys the harmony that is supposed to exist in the family, and leads to other social problems like rape-incest. In fact, there are more reasons like the advent of new technologies such as the Internet and its services like the social networks where people meet others over the net, and accessibility to pornography and sexual oriented Websites. Politicians, scientists, Muslim scholars, and others try to put up plans to reduce the causes of the social problems in Malaysia. Most of them believed that the major remedy would be returning the people back to hold their traditions, values, morals, and religious instructions. Enhancing the Islamic values of the people will extremely help to reduce all the social problems in any society. Since Islam is a comprehensive system of life which covers all aspect of life. Moreover, conducting courses and campaigns for parenting skills, in order to boost the knowledge of the parents about bringing up their kids. Those courses must talk about the basic elements of the family and the social bonds between the family members. In

addition, the courses would talk about the importance of the family in building up a strong and robust society. Making TV programmes for parents and children that show how the kids would respect their parents as well as showing the roles of the parents towards their kids. In addition, forging Islamic series about the roles of the family in the society and the purpose of the creation, because many people do not understand the basic concepts of Islam. Furthermore, broadcasting TV programmes talk about the importance of spending some time with the kids in order to create love and harmony between the parents and their children. The government has a major role to play in aiding the poor families and to try to improve their living situations. That can be done by enacting laws to support poor families which consist of more than 6 members and facing financial problems or do not have a big house that fit the whole family. Provide adequate and balanced education to the younger generations. That can be done by adding a new course to be taught at secondary schools. Moreover, giving some courses to teachers of schools about how to deal with teenagers as well as teaching them how to inspire the students to have a good family that serves the society positively. There should be some campaigns that emphasize on the roles and responsibilities of the man in leading the family. This is to reduce the burden of responsibility of the mothers in the society. Further, to implant in the minds of the parents that the family life is compatible and reciprocal. So, both the husband and the wife bear reciprocal rights and duties towards each other. All the Muslims issues and problems can be simply solved by Islam. ‫وا أ‬