Is It Wrong for a Girl to Stand Up to Her Older Sister Who Beats Her?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad


Two sisters are always fighting, and they blame each other. The older one always has a problem with her sister’s personality, she slaps her if they have a quarrel or she beats her. For example, they disagreed about the qibla in two different rooms, so the younger sister prayed as she saw fit, but the older one got angry and took a charger and was beating her. She never hits anyone except her younger sister, and finally, she stood up for herself and even pushed her away to defend herself. Was that sinful?


Thank you for your question. I empathize with your anger and frustration, and you must know that your sister is sinful, and you are not when you are defending yourself.

Safe from Tongue and Hand

‘Amr bin ‘Abasa said: “I came to God’s messenger and asked, ‘Who is associated with you in this matter, messenger of God?” He replied, “Both freeman and slave.” I asked what Islam was, and he said, “Pleasant speech and the provision of food.” I asked what faith was, and he said, “Endurance and benevolence.” I asked what aspect of Islam was most excellent, and he replied that it is seen in him from whose tongue and hand the Muslims were safe.’” [Ahmad]

Sibling Rivalry

It’s a common phenomenon today, and sibling rivalry can get really extreme and out of control. In Islam, no one has the right to hit their younger sister, and she is behaving contrary to the sunna. Defending oneself is an obligation, and if she hits you, you should try and stop her. You should tell your parents that they must step in before things get out of hand. Do your very best to prevent abuse from yourself and call the police if necessary. Any time your sister blames you, just repeat to her that you want her to stop hitting you.

Use supplication as your tool. The Prophet, Allah bless him and give him peace, said, “There are three whose supplication is not rejected: The fasting person when he breaks his fast, the just leader, and the supplication of the oppressed person; Allah raises it up above the clouds and opens the gates of heaven to it. And the Lord says: ‘By My might, I shall surely aid you, even if it should be after a while.’” [Tirmidhi]

Please see these links 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.