How Do I Convince My Father to Let Me Marry My Cousin?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

My cousin proposed to me some years ago. I like him and his family but my father doesn’t. He (my father) agrees that he possesses good character and might make me happy but thinks that because he is not financially stable and is shy, he is unsuitable for me. He keeps them waiting and this is making us all frustrated.

In the meanwhile, I have received other proposals but I refuse them as I don’t find them compatible. My father always prefers others over my cousin and gets really angry when I prefer my cousin. How should I convince my father? Will I be sinful if I disobey him and choose my cousin? Or should I listen to him instead? Will I be sinful if I agree to marry my father’s choice but remain attached to my cousin?

Answer

Thank you for your question. I am sorry that you are going through so much turmoil with your father, and I pray that you can both pray istikhara and come to a peaceful decision.

Approval

At the end of the day, your father’s approval is required for you to marry and that is all you need to move forward. You would not be sinful in any way.  What is more important here is whether you should trust your judgment or his? He does know you very well, and he is not thinking emotionally as you are. Try these steps:

  1. Both of you should pray istikhara until you feel certain about the answer;
  2. Have your father sit down and meet with him to discuss his finances and financial goals and review his opinion of him;
  3. You should look at your cousin with an objective eye and follow the guidance in this hadith, “A woman is married for four things: for her wealth, for her lineage, for her beauty or her piety. Select the pious, may you be blessed!” [Bukhari; Muslim] This hadith applies when selecting husbands as well.

Turn to Allah

During this confusing time, you should turn to Allah by praying on time, reading Quran daily, and supplication for clarity and guidance. Trust in Allah, and continuously ask Him for submission, guidance, and contentment. Pray the Prayer of Need and rise before dawn to communicate with your Lord. If you are marrying with the right intention, Allah will facilitate the perfect match for you, even if you have to endure some disappointment first, and no matter who you end up with. Try not to decide by emotion, but approach this logically and wisely. Make sure to take a class on Islamic Marriage before you jump into this.

Please see the links below for more tips.
Can A Father Refuse To Meet A Suitor For His Daughter?
What Can I Do If My Parents Do Not Accept the Person I Want to Marry?
What Should I Do About Stubborn Parents Who Refuse My Potential Suitor?

May Allah give you the best of this world and the next.
[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqidah, fiqh, tajweed, tafsir, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She later moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.