Does Breastmilk Produced Through Artificial Means Bring Shari’a Rulings Into Effect?

Question:

A one-year-old baby was given breastmilk that came through consuming tablets. Is baby now the foster daughter of the woman who breastfed her? Do other rulings apply?

Answer:

Wa ‘alaykum assalam wa rahmatullah wa barakatuh.

I pray you are well.

 

The Mother’s Family

Yes, the child is now the foster daughter of the lady who breastfed her. See it is her having been placed within the family of the lady who breastfed her. She does not have to cover in front of the foster mother’s brother or son – unless, at some point, there is the fear of this leading to inappropriate interaction from either side. In that situation, she would have to cover.

Otherwise, it is as though she is a biological daughter of the foster mother when it comes to the mother’s direct relatives. The normal rules of clothing and interaction between siblings and near relatives apply here too.

 

The Mother’s Husband

However, the husband of the foster mother is not considered her father as the milk as produced through artificial and not natural means. She child would have to cover in front of him after reaching puberty. [Maydani, al-Lubab]

Try to promote good relationships between her and the rest of the family, always; and even amongst the family members. Having good relationships is highly emphasised in Islam, and it is the means to religious and worldly success.

May Allah grant you the best of both worlds.

[Shaykh] Abdul-Rahim Reasat

 

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat began his studies in Arabic Grammar and Morphology in 2005. After graduating with a degree in English and History he moved to Damascus in 2007 where, for 18 months, he studied with many erudite scholars. In late 2008 he moved to Amman, Jordan, where he continued his studies for the next six years in Sacred Law (fiqh), legal theory (Usul al-fiqh), theology, hadith methodology, hadith commentary, and Logic. He was also given licenses of mastery in the science of Quranic recital and he was able to study an extensive curriculum of Quranic sciences, tafsir, Arabic grammar, and Arabic eloquence.