What Should an Adult Do If Their Parents Are Abusive?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad


What is our responsibility to abusive parents after we have grown up and they have enough wealth to run their expenses? The abusive parents still abuse my wife and baby by neglecting and insulting them with all the other relatives. They threaten our lives.


Thank you for your question. May Allah reward you for being concerned about your responsibilities to your parents even after they are independent. I pray that you come to a mutual understanding with them and find peace.

Parent’s Rights

One is not obliged to spend on one’s parents when they are financially independent. Anything you spend would be in the way of goodness, charity, and strengthening bonds. Please see your financial obligations here: Fiqh of Financially Supporting one’s Parents and Relatives.

Instead, Allah Most High describes how we should treat them in His book: “Your Lord decrees that you shall worship none but Him and treat your parents well, and if one or both of them reach old age with you, say not ‘Uff!’ to them nor upbraid them, but speak noble words and lower the wing of humility to them out of mercy.” [Quran, 17:23-24]

See details on disobeying parents here: When May Parents Be Disobeyed, and How?


Parents have no right to abuse their children, and one must protect oneself and one’s family from it. The best way is to treat them well, have open conversations, be light-hearted, and give them gifts. One should minimize or alter how one meets their parents. Visit them for short visits, and leave after helping them with something. Or call them more often and visit less. Or sometimes, visit them without your wife and child. Play around with it so that it’s less painful for everybody involved. Managing the relationship with patience and tact is more beloved to Allah than cutting parents off; that is not even an option.

Please use these resources and tips:

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 and 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.