Dr Siti Hasmah reveals secret to long marriage with Dr M

Ida Lim
Dr SIti Hasmah and Dr Mahathir have been married for 62 years. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 8 — Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Mohd Ali has shared the key ingredients to her long-lasting and happy marriage with Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, which includes trust and love.

Dr SIti Hasmah, who has been married to Dr Mahathir for 62 years, said their quarrels are over minor things that can be resolved easily.

“It helps that we are both doctors. But regardless of what job you have, you have to really love each other, you need to trust each other, and you have to see to each other’s needs.

“Of course lah we fight, but they are over remeh-temeh things that can be solved straightaway. In Islam, tiga hari husband and wife tak bercakap tu berdosa (it is a sin for a husband and wife to not talk to each other for three days). All married couples fight, it is the making up that is fun, isn’t it,” she was quoted as saying in financial weekly The Edge’s pullout Options.

The paper had noted that Dr Sii Hasmah had in her book My Name is Hasmah — published before her 90th birthday — wrote of her failing eyesight.

“People have expressed how handsome my husband still looks at 90. I wish I could see this and compare what I see with the 22-year-old student I fell in love with 70 years ago,” she was quoted as writing.

Dr Siti Hasmah is 92 this year, one year younger than Dr Mahathir. They married when Dr Siti Hasmah was 30 and Dr Mahathir 31.

Dr Mahathir had featured photos of him and his wife when he first debuted on social media platform Instagram and when he hit one million Instagram followers, describing her as someone who has been faithfully with him since their marriage.

In the interview published by The Edge, Dr Siti Hasmah spoke of how she had remained non-political since she married Dr Mahathir.

“When I married Mahathir, I was still a government servant and even at that time, no government servant would take part in politics.

“I’ve kept to that, and he never spoke to me about politics anyway. Even now, he says if he tells me anything, I will worry and that’s not good for me,” she was quoted as saying.

For Dr Mahathir’s return to politics in recent years after retiring as prime minister in 2003, Dr Siti Hasmah was quoted as saying: “My husband never discusses politics with me, and he has a definite reason for it. He never did during the first round, fair enough lah, he didn’t do it during the second round. To say that I would discourage him, also, tak ada lah.”

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