Answered by Ustadh Amjad Tarsin
Question: Assalam alaykum
My son is suicidal and I have already reached out to the medical and mental health community; but it does not help. Things became worse after some events took place that made him lose faith in humanity. It was after these things he said he no longer believed in God. How do I help him and how do I not get pulled down by his negativity?
Answer: Wa alaykum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,
Firstly thank you for reaching out and I empathize with the challenges you and your son have faced. May Allah grant you both ease, gentleness, and encompassing well-being.
How were mental health professionals not helping? Are there other resources you can access? If you ever need someone to talk to, I would recommend calling the Naseeha toll free Helpline at 1866 627 3342. They have counselors and volunteers who can listen to you or your son if you’re ever in need.
Although your love for your son will always keep you concerned over his well-being and faith, once a child becomes an adult, they are accountable for their own decisions. Allah the Exalted informs us in the Quran of Prophets and Messengers whose own family members were disbelievers. They tried their best, but then they were free to make their own choices. So you can continue to show your son love and support and use whatever resources are available to help him move past this difficult stage he’s going through.
One of the greatest resources available to you is dua. Allah the Exalted says, “Who [other than Allah] answers the distressed when they call upon Him? Who [other than Him] removes their suffering?” (Quran 27.62) and, “Your Lord says, ‘Call on Me and I will answer you.’” (Quran 40.60). I would especially recommend praying Salat ul-Haja which can be found here.
It is at times when everything else does not seem to work that our hearts are humbled before Allah and we recognize our utter need of Him. Pray for your son and ask Allah to give him good health emotionally and spiritually.
It is very saddening to hear of the negative the treatment you and your son experienced. Unfortunately, this is what happens when people of little knowledge try to assert religion and often veer towards extremes at either end. Allah informs us in the Quran that He sent the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) as, “A mercy to the worlds.” (Quran 21.107). May Allah reward you for your sincere intention and returning to Islam and seeking its true manifestation.
If you testify that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah then you are a Muslim. It’s that simple. And always remember that the door of repentance and return to Allah is always open as long as we have life.
May Allah grant you ease in all your affairs and heal the pain in your son’s heart and bring him back to Him with gentleness, ease, and mercy.
[Ustadh] Amjad Tarsin
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Ustadh Amjad Tarsin was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan and spent his early childhood there. He has also lived in Malaysia and Saudi Arabia, growing up within diverse cultures. He obtained his Bachelors of Arts at the University of Michigan in English Literature and Islamic Studies.
After spending a transformative year studying Islam abroad at Dar al-Mustafa, Yemen, Ustadh Amjad returned to America to start his studies at University of Michigan Law School. Yearning to fulfill his calling to community building, spiritual development, and service, Ustadh Amjad changed career paths and enrolled in Hartford Seminary’s Islamic Chaplaincy program. In 2012 he was selected as University of Toronto’s first full-time Muslim Chaplain.