Question: Idolatrous parents don’t approve of their daughter’s marriage because her suitor doesn’t believe in idol worship. Instead, they want her to marry an idol-worshipper. She does not currently believe in idol worship and believes firmly in Almighty God. What should she do in light of the Quran and hadith?
Thank you for your question. This must be a difficult time for you since your beliefs are very different from your parents’ beliefs. I pray that you can reconcile with them with ease and good character without undue pain and hardship to either party.
Marrying a non-Muslim man
Please see this answer about why a Muslim woman cannot marry a non-Muslim man, there is simply no room for it in the shari`ah and there is unanimous consensus about its impermissibility.
Non-Muslim father to act as a legal guardian
If your parents are non-Muslim, while you are Muslim, your father may not act as your guardian for your marriage contract. In such a situation, you would ask an imam or other reliable legal upright Muslim man to act on his behalf.
In addition, you would not need his permission to marry the man of your choice. Please see these links:
Family and Wisdom
With the understanding of the above rulings, you should proceed with love, tact, and wisdom. Your parents brought you into this world and they should be involved in attending the wedding and being informed every step of the way. Explain to them gently that what they want from you is not possible.
Respect their views and hear their advice, even if you disagree and will not act upon it. Tell them that you appreciate any marital advice that they can offer after the marriage has taken place and that you hope and expect that they will be active participants in your children’s lives.
Ask Allah after your daily prayers and during the last third of the night to facilitate this matter and that your parents be patient and accept your differences. It may take time, but I am certain that they will continue to love you and respect your choices in life. Read some Qu’ran every day with the meaning and learn your obligations in your daily Islamic practice and as a Muslim wife.
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[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, tafseer, 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 recently moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.