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In the Midst of a Divorce

In the Midst of a Divorce

As you move through a divorce, things can become mentally, physically, and emotionally exhausting. With the support and resources in this section, you can mitigate stressors and lessen the negative impact on yourself and your family. For more resources, check out The FYI’s Divorce Support Toolkit.


As you experience a change in your normal routines and lifestyle, you may be going through a wide range of emotions, from anger to anxiety. Engage in self-care throughout the entire process. Here are some things you can try:


Interacting with Your Partner

This section provides resources on how to maintain your safety and well-being while interacting with your soon-to-be ex-partner.

(Refer to the “children” section below for co-parenting resources)

You may be experiencing doubt or regret about leaving a hurtful relationship, likely projected on to you from others–was it really abusive? Should you have tried more? Maybe you could have been more patient? Refer to these resources to navigate these doubts about abusive relationships in Muslim communities:

If you are working on your way out of an abusive relationship, refer to these resources to ensure your safety and well-being:

If you fear for your safety or are in immediate danger, call the Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233.


Discussions with Your Children

  • Informing your child about the divorce can be a daunting task.
  • Keep their age in mind when thinking about how to talk to themabout it, what behaviors to watch for and how to help them with the transition
  • Consider these talking points and reactions for younger children
  • Learn about the unique ways your teenage children may be impacted
  • Follow these 7 tips for communicating about the divorce:
  • If possible, talk to your children about the divorce with the other parent.
  • Be honest in answering questions
  • Let your children know what life will be like after the divorce
  • Emphasize that the divorce is final
  • Reassure your kids
  • Be available
  • Communicate stability, but don’t be afraid to show emotion
  • Watch this video to help you understand what children go through in a divorce
  • Try these children’s books about divorce and separation
  • Helping your children cope will be a priority during this time to build their resilience
  • Use these 7 strategies to help them grieve and move forward
  • Use this checklist to create a stable home environment for your children
  • Make the transition easier by reassuring your love for them and encourage open and honest conversation about their feelings, among other things
  • Read about the unique ways you can help your teenage child cope and adjust
  • Work on your own resilience so that you can build resilience in your children
  • Reduce conflict with your partner for your children’s sake during the process:
  • Utilize these parenting strategies to protect your child from conflict in your marital relationship during the divorce process
  • Set boundaries with the other parent to reduce conflict
  • In the Midst of a Divorce Try this worksheet and this plan about parenting times, events, communication, and decision making
  • If you realize you cannot co-parent successfully, consider parallel parenting
  • Read about the Islamic rulings on parent access to children and visitation rights
  • Check out the infographics in this section for more pointers


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Zakat eligibility of The FYI

The Family & Youth Institute, or The FYI, is a well-known Muslim organization in the United States. It works to promote mental health and wellness by strengthening and empowering individuals, families, and communities through research and education. It has been working for many years to bring Islamic perspectives to understanding and promoting mental health in our communities.

It is dedicated to serving and supporting Muslims – safeguarding our deen, our families, and our future generations. Therefore, the work of The FYI comes in the category of ‘fi sabeelillah’ or the Path of Allah, within the eight categories where Zakat money can be used.

Zakah expenditures are only for the poor and for the needy and for those employed for it and for bringing hearts together [for Islam] and for freeing captives [or slaves] and for those in debt and for the cause of Allah, and for the [stranded] traveler – an obligation [imposed] by Allah, And Allah, is Knowing and Wise.”
(Al-Tawbah 9:60)

According to scholars who widen the meaning of fee sabeelillah to include any activities that promote Islamic growth, The FYI is indeed eligible to receive part of the Zakat funds for its programs and services. I urge Muslims in America to support this organization through their donations, general charity, and through their Zakat. I ask Allah swt to strengthen and guide The FYI to continue its good work in supporting Muslims.

Shaikh Ali Suleiman Ali, PhD

About Shaikh Ali

Sh. Ali Suleiman Ali was born in Ghana where he spent his childhood studying with various Muslim scholars. He then moved to Saudi Arabia and enrolled in the Islamic University of Madina.  He graduated with a degree in both Arabic and Islamic Studies. Dr. Ali went on to complete his Ph.D. in Islamic Studies at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

Sh. Ali serves on the Advisory Council of The Family & Youth Institute. He is the Senior Imam and Director of the Muslim Community of Western Suburbs in Canton, Michigan. Additionally, he serves as the Director of Muslim Family Services in Detroit and is a council member of the Fiqh Council of North America (FCNA). He is also a member of the North American Imams Federation (NAIF) and the Association of Muslim Jurists of America (AMJA).