A lack of understanding between married couples was the primary cause of family conflict in the Sultanate, chalking up a 42 percentage point, according to statistics from the Family Counselling Service Division at the Syariah Affairs Department, Ministry of Religious Affairs (MoRA).
The same study, conducted over the last three years, also suggested that 27 per cent of household complaints could be attributed to failure to provide for the family, followed by extra-marital affairs at 12 per cent.
Acting Director of Syariah Affairs Haji Suhaimi bin Haji Gemok highlighted this during a certificate presentation ceremony for 18 couples who completed a three-day post-marriage course at the Court Building and Syariah Courts.
Haji Suhaimi said a majority of complaints (52 per cent) reported to the Family Counselling Service Division were from couples who had been wed between four and 10 years.
“Parental role in shaping a harmonious family is indeed challenging in this era, due to exposure to outside influences. It can detrimentally alter both our thinking and character.
“This can be tackled if the family institution is guided by strong values and faith.
“Additionally, the essence of harmonious marriage and parenthood must be built on good intentions, which include seeking comfort from Allah the Almighty, being tolerant and caring.
“To ensure familial harmony, it is crucial to be a good listener and practise positive communication,” he explained.
“Undoubtedly, married couples will encounter differences given their varying perspectives, according to their backgrounds. Such differences has the potential to create conflicts, if not tackled properly.
“Hence, it is crucial for all parties to actively work on their family skills in order to minimise family disputes, doing so in tandem with religious teachings,” he said.
The Family Counselling Service Division is tasked with rolling out family education programmes designed to tackle existing issues.
Facilitators presented seven working papers at three-day event.
Haji Ali Yusri bin Haji Abdul Ghafor presented on ‘Still In Love’, Sri Nazrina binti Haji Johari on ‘Family Financial Planning’, Muhammad Faidzal bin Haji Abdul Wahab on ‘Islamic Family Law Act Chapter 217’, Major (Rtd) Rusli bin Bujang on ‘Glorious Husband Attracts Wife’, Dr Hajah Ummi Fa’izah binti Haji Abdul Rahman on ‘Parenting Skills: Future of Our Children’, ASP Ahmad Faez bin Haji Mohd Hani on ‘Eradicating Household Dilemmas’ and Haji Noor Husseini bin Haji Mohd Hussein on ‘Faith of Career and Marriage’.
Themed ‘Seeking Faith, Harmonious Family’, the post-marriage course turned the spotlight on communication and parenting skills, striking a work and family balance, financial management, knowledge on Islamic family law, and domestic violence-related procedures.
Participating couple Pengiran Hairul Azmi bin Pengiran Haji Tengah and Dayangku Hajah Amanina Syazwani binti Pengiran Haji Aliudin told the Bulletin the course served as a refresher to what they had learnt in the past, and also brought with it “valuable new knowledge”.
“It would be ideal if this course is also made available to soon-to-be-wed couples, as it discusses how we can improve ourselves as husband and wife,” they added.
Meanwhile, Mohd Saiful Kamarulzaman bin Sawal and Almira Nur ruissa binti Roslan believed that the course helps to iron out household-related matters.
“The course is interesting. It discussed subjects such as how to take care of your wife’s feelings and a husband’s role in assisting his wife. Emphasis was also placed on clocking in quality time together,” Mohd Saiful said.