Is It Permissible to Play with Non-mahram Kids?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad


Is it permissible for me to play with non-mahram little girls who haven’t reached puberty, and who are under ten years old? For example, my friend’s daughter is very playful, and she likes to play with family, friends, and relatives. Is it permissible to childishly play with them?


Thank you for your question. May Allah reward you for your scrupulous question, and may He guide all of us to the best Islamic conduct with the people around us.


Much of what you mention depends on `urf (customs of one’s land). Technically, a girl who is ten years old is ordered to pray all of her prayers and thus begins to take on the habits of a pubescent person. As such, she should be encouraged to get into the habit of not playing with the opposite gender. However, if it is acceptable according to one’s `urf, one could play a short game with her, but ensure that that there is no touching. Doing it habitually may not be advisable, as very soon, one would be lowering one’s gaze from her and treating her as an adult non-mahram, anyways.

Scrupulousness (wara`)

The Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “The lawful is clear, and the unlawful is clear, and between that are matters that are doubtful (not clear); many of the people do not know whether it is lawful or unlawful. So whoever leaves it to protect his religion and his honor, then he will be safe, and whoever falls into something from them, then he soon will have fallen into the unlawful. Just like if someone grazes (his animals) around a sanctuary, he would soon wind up in it. Indeed, for every king is a sanctuary (pasture), and indeed Allah’s sanctuary is what He made unlawful.” [Tirmidhi]

Please see this link about gender interaction as well:

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 Master’s 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.