How Do I Deal With Parents Who Take Advantage of Me?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question:

Is it haram for me to not love my parents? Is it haram for me to leave my house without their blessings for the sake of my own mental health? Am I obliged to give money to my parents as their daughter when they have two sons who can provide for them, but they refuse to take their money and take mine instead?

Answer:

Assalamu alaykum,

Thank you for your question. I empathize with your frustration and pray that you can work things out with your parents so that you are treated with fairness.

Loving parents

It is not obligatory to love your parents, but rather, to be good to them. However, one should actively try to get along with them because hating them will make the job of respecting them harder. Ask Allah to open your heart to understanding them and communicating with them.

Keep this prophetic hadith in mind: Abdullah bin Mas’ud said, “I asked the Messenger of Allah, (Allah bless him and give him peace), which action is most beloved to Allah? He said: ‘Establishing prayer on time, honoring one’s parents and Jihad in the cause of Allah.‘“ [Nasa’i]

Leaving the house

It is potentially sinful for a young lady to leave the house without their permission because of the disrespect that it entails. Of course, there are exceptions, such as when she is being abused and will certainly be harmed if she stays. I’m not sure of your situation, but you should try to exhaust all avenues of communication and compromise with polite firmness before doing something rash. Moving out with their permission is perfectly permissible, so if you really must leave, try to do it that way. See these links for more details:

https://seekersguidance.org/answers/parents/moving-out-and-mending-the-relationship-with-parents/
https://seekersguidance.org/answers/living-religion/i-am-a-young-unmarried-woman-in-a-chaotic-family-home-is-it-permissible-for-me-to-move-out/

Money

It is obligatory for you to give your parents money if they need it, beyond that, it is not, but rather a charity. See the details here about supporting parents financially:
https://islamqa.org/hanafi/daruliftaa/7933/fiqh-of-financially-supporting-ones-parents-and-relatives/

Your job, so that you are no longer used as a doormat, is to communicate with your brothers and tell them that you have decided to withhold a certain amount from your parents and that they must step in. You should tell them how much you give your parents monthly, divide it into thirds, and ask that each of you give a third each. Your parents don’t need to know all these details, and your brothers can just give it to you, and you pass it on to the parents. Inform your parents if you don’t think that it will cause a problem. This is fairness, and Allah knows best. Please see these links as well:

https://seekersguidance.org/answers/general-counsel/how-to-deal-with-overbearing-parents-who-want-control-of-my-money/
https://seekersguidance.org/answers/family-ties/which-child-takes-care-of-the-parents/

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, tafseer, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her master’s in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan, where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She recently moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.