Should I Marry a Woman Who Can No Longer Have Children?

Question

What would your advice be for a single man considering marrying a woman who cannot have children?

She has adult twin daughters from a previous marriage before Islam but nearly died as a result. She is otherwise compatible with me and shares a vision of service to the religion. I would not be able to marry a second wife in order to have kids. I am conflicted about his decision.

The sad irony is that I previously never wanted children owing to an unhappy upbringing. But once I met her, I recognized how children crystallize a loving relationship. He feels bad that his family wealth may go to strangers after death rather than his own progeny to build a godly dynasty.

Answer

Thank you for your question. It is truly very difficult to tell you what to do in this situation.

Children

Procreation is one of the goals of marriage and it does cement the relationship between husband and wife. The joys are immeasurable, and they truly teach one about Islam and living it, more than any teacher or book can. This tough decision is one that only you can make.

Please see more details here about that:
Is It Obligatory to Try to Have Children
The Virtues of Having Children

Steps

Pray istikhara about it and consider all the benefits and harms.
Ask her to see her doctor and consider a medical procedure. Won’t she consider it if it is important to you?
Why not adopt? There are thousands of orphans in the world, and lots of adoption consultants to show you how to do it.

The Prophetic Advice

If you can’t shake this negative feeling, I would take it as an answer to your isitkhara. In that case, you should walk away and search for someone who can complete your faith and raise your children who will pray for you after your death. Contemplate this hadith:

It was narrated that Maqil bin Yasar (Allah be pleased with him) said: “A man came to the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) and said: ‘I have found a woman who is from a good family and of good status, but she does not bear children, should I marry her?’ He told him not to. Then he came to him a second time and he told him not to (marry her). Then he came to him a third time and he told him not to (marry her), then he said: ‘Marry the one who is fertile and loving, for I will boast of your great numbers.” [Nasa’i]

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, where she completed her Masters 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.