How Can I Discuss Things With My Irrational Father?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

I am a 30-year-old only child and my dad won’t allow my mom to travel abroad to see her siblings. She hasn’t been in nine years and they really miss each other. His reasoning is that I can’t be left alone in the house when he’s at work in the evenings three days a week (even though I work five days a week). I don’t understand this rationale. He won’t allow a conversation and I can’t reason with him. If she brings it up, he yells and shouts at my mom. Afterward, he will make comments about how she and I fail to understand the deen.

I am absolutely baffled and don’t know what to do. Waiting for nine years has started to affect her mental health which is depressing.

Answer

Thank you for your question. I am sorry that you are dealing with this difficult situation with your father and I pray that your parents can come to a compromise, soon.

Communicate

The best thing that you can do is communicate to your father how important this situation is to your mother. You should try and change your approach. Why not get her siblings to speak to him? What about paying for their tickets to come and stay with your family? How about you take a little time out and go with her? Although it seems completely irrational to worry so much for one’s daughter, I can concur as a parent that it doesn’t feel right to leave one’s children if one has the choice. You are grown up, but parents feel obligated to do right by their children no matter how old they are.

Turn to Allah

Since your father is the head of the household, I would ask that you be patient and turn to Allah with your worries. Be the best Muslim that you can be, the best daughter that you can be, and ask Allah to guide you to do what is right for your parents. Encourage your mother to pray on time, read Quran daily with the meaning, and gain sacred knowledge. There are many places to study online or on the phone, and I highly recommend that she keeps herself busy with something good. This will make her feel better, and increase her faith which will aid her in times of distress.

Please keep this prophetic hadith in mind: “The believer who mixes with people and bears their annoyance with patience will have a greater reward than the believer who does not mix with people and does not put up with their annoyance.” [Ibn Majah]

Please see these links as well:
Dealing With Difficult Parents and Keeping Promises
Being rude and heartless towards parents

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.