Can I Hang Out with My Beloved before Nikah?

Shafi'i Fiqh

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

I never got involved in any haram with girls ever. In my final year, I made istikhara about a girl, and she seemed to be suitable for me. I told her I intended to marry her when Allah makes it easy. We want to make our parents aware and get their consent, but in our community in Ghana, young marriage is seen as foolish. My parents have never even spoken to me about marriage.

I don’t want to date her because I love her. Even her brother and sisters are aware of our relationship. I see her weekly to tutor her in Math. I also try to help her with other basics. I admonish her about our religion and remind her about the Quran because I see her as my potential wife. Given my parents’ misconceptions about marriage, we will ask for their consent after graduation, so they know we are both mature. Since we intend to settle for marriage, can we continue with our mode of relationship?

Answer

Thank you for your question. I commend you for upholding the standards of Islam and safeguarding yourself from temptation during your time at school. May Allah reward you for that.

Your intention to marry is praiseworthy, and you should marry her as soon as possible. I believe it would be wiser to tell your parents that you have someone in mind and that you plan to pursue marriage with her in a couple of years. This way, they can relax that you are not asking to marry immediately but know that you have made your intention. I don’t feel it’s right to keep hiding your preference from your parents. They deserve more respect than that and deserve to know that you found someone.

As for your current type of relationship, seeing her and speaking to her weekly for tutoring and small discussion is fine. The problem is that one thing usually leads to another, and man is weak. I fear that you might fall into something haram over time. There is no guarantee that you can continue with such restraint for a few more years.

Please pray Istikhara about this girl and the timing for this marriage. Islamically, performing a marriage contract with her is perfectly acceptable to make your meetings and dealings halal. You can live with her later on when both families agree. See these related links: What is Katbul Kitab?

Having to Wait for Nikah If your parents don’t agree to a contract, for now, it might be better to keep your distance until you can.

Also, prepare yourself for marriage financially and Islamically. Take a course on marriage, its obligations, and its rights.

Love, Marriage, and Relationships in Islam: All Your Questions Answered
Keys to Successful Muslim Marriages: Practical lessons that explain the Prophetic Spirit of Marriage

May Allah Most High give you the best in this world and the next and facilitate and bless this union.

[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqida, 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.