I Converted to Islam but My In-Laws Do Not Accept Me. What Do I Do?

Answered by Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil

Question: Assalam aleykum,

I was Hindu but converted to Islam and got married to my husband. His family does not accept me. Please, how do I have a successful love marriage?

Answer: Assalamualaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I pray this finds you well. May Allah reward you for reaching out to us. Please forgive me for the delay.

Marriage Contract

Dear sister, you are in a very difficult situation. I am sorry that both your parents and your husband’s parents are not accepting of your marriage.

The rules of Islam are are clear on the validity of the marriage contract. For as long as you are both Muslim, then your nikah is valid.

Convert

Dear sister, rest assured that your past sins were forgiven the moment you embraced Islam. Because of the stress of what you are going through, I encourage you to look after yourself and your marriage.

Make good on your Islam. Continue to perform your obligatory acts such as prayer, fasting in Ramadan, paying zakat, and so on. Observe your hijab as best you can. Spend time make sincere dua to Allah. Please perform the Prayer of Need and ask Allah to help you through this.

I am sorry that you are struggling. Aside from your husband, do you have any Muslim friends who can support you?

Acceptance

Please accept that for the near future at least, your in-laws will remain unhappy with you. You cannot control what they do or say. All you can focus on is yourself and your marriage.

Please know that you can seek help with a culturally-sensitive counsellor – none of us were meant to go through this world alone.

Marriage

I encourage you to enrol in Marriage in Islam: Practical Guidance for Successful Marriages and listen to Getting Married with Ustadha Shireen Ahmed and Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.

Do everything in your power to nourish your marriage. Marriage, even in the best of circumstances, is hard work. When you and your husband are a solid team, then you’ll be better able to handle your difficulties. Go on holidays together, create positive memories together, and be each other’s staunchest supporters.

Seriously. What’s the Point of Marriage?
Managing vs. Resolving Conflict in Relationships: The Blueprints for Success
How to Make Repair Attempts So Your Partner Feels Loved

Please see:

Love, Marriage and Relationships in Islam: All Your Questions Answered
A Reader on Patience and Reliance on Allah

[Ustadha] Raidah Shah Idil

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil has spent almost two years in Amman, Jordan, where she learned Shafi’i’ fiqh, Arabic, Seerah, Aqeedah, Tasawwuf, Tafsir and Tajweed. She continues to study with her Teachers in Malaysia and online through SeekersHub Global. She graduated with a Psychology and English degree from University of New South Wales, was a volunteer hospital chaplain for 5 years and has completed a Diploma of Counselling from the Australian Institute of Professional Counsellors. She lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, with her husband, daughter, and mother-in-law.

My Husband and I Are Drifting Apart and He Emotionally Abuses Me. What Do I Do?

Answered by Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil

Question: Assalam aleykum,

My husband and I are drifting apart. We were in love once, but it has been two years into our marriage, and things are completely different. He is still in touch with a girl whom he had an affair with.

I am a strong believer – I pray and fast regularly. My husband used to as well, but is completely different now. He drinks and smokes often. He treats me as an inferior being quite often. My husband threatened to divorce me that if I start wearing hijab.

After istikhara prayer, I had a dream about my colleague. My colleague has feelings for me, so we only communicate professionally now. What should I do about my marriage?

Answer: Assalamualaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I pray this finds you well. May Allah reward you for reaching out to us. Please forgive me for the delay.

Marriage

Dear sister, what you have shared is troubling. Your husband may not be physically abusing you, but he is clearly emotionally abusing you.

As a general rule, people do not miraculously change after marriage. Not unless they want to. Being in a long-distance marriage does not help with your communication difficulties.

Prayer of Guidance

Please know that a dream is not necessarily a positive or negative sign to your isitkhara.

Did the Answer to My Istikhara Come in My Dreams?

If you are in an unhappy marriage, then it is likely that the dream about your colleague is from your own nafs, or the whisperings of the devil. Please tread very carefully. No married woman expects to be ‘that woman’ who begins an affair with a colleague, but please know that you are at risk, especially because he is already emotionally attached to you. Please tread very carefully.

5 Ways To Prevent Infidelity

Divorce

Please do everything in your power to salvage your marriage, and consider divorce your last resort. Please ask your husband if he is willing to attend culturally-sensitive marriage counselling with you. If you are both motivated enough, then it is possible for you to still make your marriage work.

10 Things to Try Before Giving Up On Your Marriage

However, if your husband refuses to see your point of view and continues to treat you with contempt and abuse, then please, for the sake of your dignity and emotional health, consider ending your marriage. You do not have to continue to suffer.

This One Thing is the Biggest Predictor of Divorce
4 Marriage Myths That Cause Divorce
How to Repair the Little Things So They Don’t Become Big Things

Moving forward

I encourage you to read Before You Tie The Knot and Getting Married with Ustadha Shireen Ahmed and Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.

I pray that Allah grants you the courage to do what is best for your deen and dunya.

Please see:

Love, Marriage and Relationships in Islam: All Your Questions Answered
Selected Prophetic Prayers for Spiritual, Physical and Emotional Wellbeing by Chaplain Ibrahim Long

[Ustadha] Raidah Shah Idil

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil has spent almost two years in Amman, Jordan, where she learned Shafi’i’ fiqh, Arabic, Seerah, Aqeedah, Tasawwuf, Tafsir and Tajweed. She continues to study with her Teachers in Malaysia and online through SeekersHub Global. She graduated with a Psychology and English degree from University of New South Wales, was a volunteer hospital chaplain for 5 years and has completed a Diploma of Counselling from the Australian Institute of Professional Counsellors. She lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, with her husband, daughter, and mother-in-law.

Is It Permissible to Ask My Prospective Spouse If He Is a Virgin?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam alaykum

Is it permissible to ask my prospective spouse if he is a virgin?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

It is not impermissible to ask your prospective spouse if they are a virgin, but they aren’t obliged, and nor do they have the right, to disclose any past errors. This is because talking about sin is wrong and sinful, and in this specific context, an instance where affirming the sin would be a case of lifting the covering of Allah from above oneself.

Hence, you should concern yourself with matters of clear benefit and harm. The jurists affirmed that a lady who made a mistake would be deemed a virgin, and the same applies to a man. This is contrary to the case where somebody has an active, current and ongoing addiction or problem, whereby they would need to disclose the matter as it could immediately impact the marriage.

What is superior is to hold yourself to the standards of the Sacred Law, to uphold those standards in your seeking of a spouse, and to give the other party the benefit of the doubt. You should certainly ask and investigate regarding those issues which are important to you, and those which are required to uphold an islamic marriage, yet without digging up somebody’s buried past.

Please also see: Informing a Prospective Spouse About Past Non-Marital Relationships and: Is It Permissible to Lie In Order to Conceal Past Sins?

And Allah Most High knows best.

wassalam,

[Ustadh] Tabraze Azam

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Tabraze Azam holds a BSc in Computer Science from the University of Leicester, where he also served as the President of the Islamic Society. He memorised the entire Qur’an in his hometown of Ipswich at the tender age of sixteen, and has since studied the Islamic Sciences in traditional settings in the UK, Jordan and Turkey. He is currently pursuing advanced studies in Jordan, where he is presently based with his family.

Does Vocally Saying the Word ‘Divorce’ Make Me Legally Divorced?

Answered by Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat

Question: Assalamu alaykum

If someone says ‘i am divorced’ or ‘i got divorced’ or ‘im not married’, does this imply the islamic talaq was given? What is the ruling when these phrases are said to other than your wife like to a co-worker or friend?

For instance, you are at work and you make up a story to pretend you are single and you are not married anymore.

Answer: Wa ‘alaykum as-salam wa rahmatullah wa barakatuh

Thank you for your question.

Executing A Divorce

These words do not entail a divorce in the Hanafi school; they are considered to be lies which have no legal consequence.

In order for someone to initiate a divorce the husband must address the wife when uttering a statement which is usually used to issue a divorce. If he does not utter such a statement, such as if he says ‘you are an Easter egg’; or if he does not address her, or refer to her through speech or pointing, etc; the divorce does not take place. For example if someone, in the presence of his wife, was reading a story out loud in which the protagonist says ‘I divorce you’ to another character, the wife of the reader will not be divorced by this statement (Ibn Abidin, Radd al-muhtar, al-Laknawi, Abdul-Hayy, ʿUmdat al-Riʿaya)

Choose Your Words Carefully

Although saying such things may not end your marriage, it does mean that it can’t have a bad effect on your life. Lying is something everyone – religious or otherwise – sees as wrong.

The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and grant him peace) told us, ‘Indeed the truth leads to [being] thorough righteousness (al-Birr – a word which includes all the various meanings of righteousness), and thorough righteousness leads to the Garden. Verily, a man continues to speak the truth until he is written in the presence of Allah as one who is Utterly True (ṣiddīq – the highest rank of sainthood). And verily, lying leads to wickedness; and wickedness leads to the hellfire. Verily, a man keeps lying until he is written in the presence of Allah to be a complete liar (Bukhari and Muslim).

This hadith highlights the consequences of our words, and the beauty of it is that even children can understand it.

May Allah grant us truthfulness in all its forms.

Wassalam,
[Shaykh] Abdul-Rahim Reasat

Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat began his studies in Arabic Grammar and Morphology in 2005. After graduating with a degree in English and History he moved to Damascus in 2007 to study and sit at the feet of some of the most erudite scholars of our time.

Over the following eighteen months he studied a traditional curriculum, studying with scholars such as Shaykh Adnan Darwish, Shaykh Abdurrahman Arjan, Shaykh Hussain Darwish and Shaykh Muhammad Darwish.

In late 2008 he moved to Amman, Jordan, where he continued his studies for the next six years, in Fiqh, Usul al-Fiqh, Theology, Hadith Methodology and Commentary, Shama’il, and Logic with teachers such as Dr Ashraf Muneeb, Dr Salah Abu’l-Hajj, Dr Hamza al-Bakri, Shaykh Ahmad Hasanat, Dr Mansur Abu Zina amongst others. He was also given two licences of mastery in the science of Qur’anic recital by Shakh Samir Jabr and Shaykh Yahya Qandil.

His true passion, however, arose in the presence of Shaykh Ali Hani, considered by many to be one of the foremost tafsir scholars of our time who provided him with the keys to the vast knowledge of the Quran. With Shaykh Ali, he was able to study an extensive curriculum of Qur’anic Sciences, Tafsir, Arabic Grammar, and Rhetoric.

When he finally left Jordan for the UK in 2014, Shaykh Ali gave him his distinct blessing and still recommends students in the UK to seek out Shaykh Abdul-Rahim for Quranic studies. Since his return he has trained as a therapist and has helped a number of people overcome emotional and psychosomatic issues. He is a keen promoter of emotional and mental health.

What Is the Ruling of the Husband Living Away From His Wife?

Answered by Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat

Question: Assalamu alaykum

What is the ruling of the husband living away from his wife in ‘idda and marriage?

Is there any difference to the ruling, if the wife owns the marital home?

Answer: Wa ‘alaykum as-salam wa rahmatullah wa barakatuh

Thank you for your question.

During Marriage

In general, the husband may live away from his wife whilst married to her, as long as this fits under the bracket of ‘maʿruf’, universally recognised goodness, which the Qur’an commands. This could be temporary for the purposes of work, etc. However, if it is for too long, such that it encroaches on her rights to things such as finances, his good company, or intimacy then he would be sinful (al-Maydani, al-Lubab). Specifying the time period would be dependant on what her needs are.

During the ʿIdda (Waiting Period)

There are multiple types of ʿidda, but what concerns us here is the ʿidda from a revocable divorce (ṭalāq rajʿī) and the ʿidda from an irrevocable divorce (ṭalāq bāʾin). For the former the husband and the wife are both to stay in the marital home, and she is encouraged to dress nicely in the hope that he will revoke the divorce, make amends, and continue married life with her.

In the ʿidda of an irrevocable divorce, they are both to dwell in the marital home, but without any contact. If there is cause for concern then another lady may live in the house with her. However, if there is cause for concern it is better for him to leave the house, because Allah commanded the lady to remain at home – not him (Haskafi, al-Durr al-Mukhtar).

If the wife owns the marital home, he will have to leave at the end of the ʿidda.

And Allah knows best

Wassalam,
[Shaykh] Abdul-Rahim Reasat

Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat began his studies in Arabic Grammar and Morphology in 2005. After graduating with a degree in English and History he moved to Damascus in 2007 to study and sit at the feet of some of the most erudite scholars of our time.

Over the following eighteen months he studied a traditional curriculum, studying with scholars such as Shaykh Adnan Darwish, Shaykh Abdurrahman Arjan, Shaykh Hussain Darwish and Shaykh Muhammad Darwish.

In late 2008 he moved to Amman, Jordan, where he continued his studies for the next six years, in Fiqh, Usul al-Fiqh, Theology, Hadith Methodology and Commentary, Shama’il, and Logic with teachers such as Dr Ashraf Muneeb, Dr Salah Abu’l-Hajj, Dr Hamza al-Bakri, Shaykh Ahmad Hasanat, Dr Mansur Abu Zina amongst others. He was also given two licences of mastery in the science of Qur’anic recital by Shakh Samir Jabr and Shaykh Yahya Qandil.

His true passion, however, arose in the presence of Shaykh Ali Hani, considered by many to be one of the foremost tafsir scholars of our time who provided him with the keys to the vast knowledge of the Quran. With Shaykh Ali, he was able to study an extensive curriculum of Qur’anic Sciences, Tafsir, Arabic Grammar, and Rhetoric.

When he finally left Jordan for the UK in 2014, Shaykh Ali gave him his distinct blessing and still recommends students in the UK to seek out Shaykh Abdul-Rahim for Quranic studies. Since his return he has trained as a therapist and has helped a number of people overcome emotional and psychosomatic issues. He is a keen promoter of emotional and mental health.

Is My Son a Mahram of His Father’s New Wife?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam alaykum

I am divorced and have an young son. The father of my son ( my ex-husband) got married and asked my son to call his wife his mother. Which is fine with me because she is like a mother and my son should respect her. The only concern I have is that whether my son is a mahram to the wife of my ex-husband?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

Yes, the son is from the unmarriageable kin (mahram) of his father’s wife.

Sons cannot marry their father’s wives, and consequently, they are considered to be from their unmarriageable kin. Allah Most High says, “And marry not those women whom your fathers married.” [4:22]

[Mawsili, al-Ikhtiyar li Ta‘lil al-Mukhtar]

Please also see: Who is Mahram

And Allah Most High knows best.

wassalam,
[Ustadh] Tabraze Azam

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Tabraze Azam holds a BSc in Computer Science from the University of Leicester, where he also served as the President of the Islamic Society. He memorised the entire Qur’an in his hometown of Ipswich at the tender age of sixteen, and has since studied the Islamic Sciences in traditional settings in the UK, Jordan and Turkey. He is currently pursuing advanced studies in Jordan, where he is presently based with his family.

Is My Family Allowed to Force Me to Stay Married to an Abusive Husband?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam alaykum

My husband never showed much kindness and care towards me. He also has been abusive. I asked him for divorce and since then I can’t see him as a husband anymore. My family used the kids to pressure me to stay married but I do not love my husband.

Are they allowed to force me to go back with him?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

No, you do not have to remain in the marriage if it is not working, and nobody can force you to stay. However, and given the sensitivities of such situations, I’d recommend that you consult with a local scholar who can ensure that things end [if needed] in a reasonable and dignified manner.

Remaining in an unhappy and unpleasant marriage is not praiseworthy, nor expected. Staying will have an impact on the children just as separation will. Similarly, marriage is a team effort where both parties have rights and responsibilities, and you are supposed to be in a state of worship. If things aren’t working, you need to reconsider the value of such a relationship.

Consider also discussing your situation with a counsellor. May Allah Most high grant you every success and facilitation.

Please also see: Etiquette of Marriage: A Comprehensive SeekersHub Reader

And Allah Most High knows best.

wassalam,

[Ustadh] Tabraze Azam

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Tabraze Azam holds a BSc in Computer Science from the University of Leicester, where he also served as the President of the Islamic Society. He memorised the entire Qur’an in his hometown of Ipswich at the tender age of sixteen, and has since studied the Islamic Sciences in traditional settings in the UK, Jordan and Turkey. He is currently pursuing advanced studies in Jordan, where he is presently based with his family.

Am I Destined to Suffer in an Unhappy Marriage?

Answered by Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil

Question: Asslamu Alaykum

I have been married for 10 years and have three children. I have suffered verbal abuse throughout the marriage and some physical abuse during the early years. My children witnessed many incidents. I have tried my best but I am unhappy. Although his behaviour has improved, I struggle to forget the past and feel bitter within. I despise all forms of physical contact. Every time I leave or try to leave I return for one reason or another, for example, financial, stability, kids, etc. Even when I applied for divorce, my certificate was issued and then revoked. Is it Allah’s Will that I remain like this? How do I figure out?

Answer: Assalamualaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I pray this finds you well. May Allah reward you for reaching out to us.

Trauma

Narrated `Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her): Allah’s Messenger (upon him be blessings and peace) said, “No calamity befalls a Muslim but that Allah expiates some of his sins because of it, even though it were the prick he receives from a thorn.” [Bukhari]

Dear sister, it sounds like you have accumulated a huge amount of trauma over your marriage. Your pain needs to be released in a healthy way, or you will continue to suffer. Your children also need healing, after what they have witnessed.

I recommend seeking out a compassionate holistic therapist such as Hafsa Hasan. Book in a consultation with someone like her. Another option is Aafiyah Healing.

Please know that you are human, and you have your limits. Be gentle on yourself. You and your children have gone through so much pain.

Destiny

Hudhaifa b. Usaid reported directly from Allah’s Messenger (upon him be blessings and peace) that he said:

“When the drop of (semen) remains in the womb for forty or fifty (days) or forty nights, the angel comes and says: My Lord, will he be good or evil? And both these things would be written. Then the angel says: My Lord, would he be male or female? And both these things are written. And his deeds and actions, his death, his livelihood; these are also recorded. Then his document of destiny is rolled and there is no addition to nor subtraction from it.” [Sahih Muslim]

Allah Most High has a plan for all of us, yes. He already knows how our lives will unfold. That being said, please do not feel helpless. Your duas make a difference.

I recommend that you continue to perform the Prayer of Guidance until you get the clarity that you need. Allow Allah to facilitate whatever is best for you, while exerting every effort to improve your life. Whatever Allah facilitates is easier for you is a positive answer to your isitkhara. Whatever Allah makes difficult is a negative answer to your istikhara.

Marriage

Do you believe that your husband has made his repentance? You describe that his behaviour has improved, but what does that mean? Has he stopped hitting you, but still verbally abuses you? Or has he stopped abusing you?

If you wish to stay in your marriage, then you and your husband must attend culturally-sensitive counselling. He must learn how to control his temper, and both of you would benefit from learning how to deal better with conflict.

V is for Violence

Divorce

Why was your divorce certificate revoked by the Shari’ah council? Is it possible for you to apply again? Could http://seekershub.org/ans-blog/2018/01/12/can-husband-forgo-payment-khula-agreement-shafii/ be an option for you? I am concerned that he could still harm you.

Moving forward

I strongly recommend consulting with a Muslimah life coach, and/or a culturally-sensitive counsellor. Work with someone who can help empower you, remind you of your values, and better design your life. For as long as you are alive, you have choices.

Finances

I cannot imagine how difficult it must be to be financially reliant upon a husband who has abused you. This would understandably make you reluctant to separate from him.

Is there anything you can do to become more financially independent? Again, please brainstorm solutions with a life coach or counsellor. The transition will be difficult at first, but I pray that the long-term benefit of financial independence and peace of mind will make it worthwhile. Please see Bringing Barakah Into Your Wealth and Life.

May Allah grant you ease in this difficult time. Please keep in touch.

Please see:

Love, Marriage and Relationships in Islam: All Your Questions Answered
My Husband Is So Controlling. What Do I Do?
My Husband Married Me for My Visa and Abuses Me. What Do I Do?

[Ustadha] Raidah Shah Idil
Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil has spent almost two years in Amman, Jordan, where she learned Shafi’i’ fiqh, Arabic, Seerah, Aqeedah, Tasawwuf, Tafsir and Tajweed. She continues to study with her Teachers in Malaysia and online through SeekersHub Global. She graduated with a Psychology and English degree from University of New South Wales, was a volunteer hospital chaplain for 5 years and has completed a Diploma of Counselling from the Australian Institute of Professional Counsellors. She lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, with her husband, daughter, and mother-in-law.

Do These Sentences Uttered by My Husband Count as a Divorce? (Shafi’i)

Answered by Shaykh Abdurragmaan Khan

Question: Assalam alaykum,

Do these sentences uttered by my husband count as a divorce?

“Maybe to Allah it’s 5 times divorce” when I told him we don’t know how many divorces have happened. He said he only mentioned and intended divorce once throughout our marriage.

“If you’re not happy, we should separate.”

“Why don’t we get a divorce, you marry someone else, and then we marry again.”

“Almost there, almost thinking of divorce.”

“If there is violence, we’d be over.”

“I’m done. divorce. You mentioned it twice today. I’m giving you what you wanted. I’m done.”

Answer: Wa alaykum al-Salam

Thank you for your question.

The issuing of divorce takes place with wording that is either clear and direct, such as, “I divorce you” or “you are divorced” or with wording that is allusive and indirect, such as, “go back to your parents” or “we are done”. The rule regarding these two different utterances of divorce is that the divorce occurs automatically in the first instance, while in the second instance (allusive and indirect), the divorce will only occur if the husband had an intention of divorce when pronouncing it.

Further, with an exception to the sixth example quoted in your question, all utterances of your husband were neither clear and direct or allusive and indirect. This means that, irrespective of your husband’s intention, none of them would be considered a valid divorce. The sixth example you quoted however, qualifies as an allusive divorce. Consequently, since your husband confirmed that he did intend divorce when he uttered these words, the divorce would be valid and you subsequently have entered ‘iddah or the waiting period.

What is essential for you to determine right now, is whether your waiting period has ended or not. The waiting period for a lady that menstruates is three clean cycles. If three clean cycles have passed, without having had conjugal relations with your “husband”, your waiting period would have ended and if you wish to continue your relationship with your partner, a new Nikah has to be performed. However, if such three clean cycles has not passed, you would still be in iddah and your husband has to take you back as his wife. He does so by pronouncing to you, “I take you back as my wife”.

Please write back to us if any further clarification is required. May Allah guide us all to that which is best for us in this world and the next.

And Allah knows best

Wassalam
[Shaykh] Abdurragmaan Khan

Shaykh Abdurragmaan
received ijazah ’ammah from various luminaries, including but not restricted to: Habib Umar ibn Hafiz—a personality who affected him greatly and who has changed his relationship with Allah, Maulana Yusuf Karaan—the former Mufti of Cape Town; Habib ‘Ali al-Mashhur—the current Mufti of Tarim; Habib ‘Umar al-Jaylani—the Shafi‘i Mufti of Makkah; Sayyid Ahmad bin Abi Bakr al-Hibshi; Habib Kadhim as-Saqqaf; Shaykh Mahmud Sa’id Mamduh; Maulana Abdul Hafiz al-Makki; Shaykh Ala ad-Din al-Afghani; Maulana Fazlur Rahman al-Azami and Shaykh Yahya al-Gawthani amongst others.

Is Pronouncing ‘Talaq’ in Anger Valid?

Answered by Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil

Question: Assalam aleykum,

My husband and I have had some very bad fights, in which we both argue and insult each other. My husband has pronounced ‘talaq’ to me many times over the years, and once even said it three times in a row, but we were both ignorant about the rulings of divorce. I know better now, and am worried about the current stage of my marriage.

My parents have pressured me to return to him and continue with married life. My husband and my parents both do not believe that a talaq said in anger is valid. What do I do?

Answer: Assalamualaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I pray this finds you well. May Allah reward you for reaching out to us.

This Answer is a general reply based on the details given. Given the considerations in such cases, please consult reliable local scholars about the specifics of the situation.

Anger

Dear sister, the majority ruling amongst the four school of thought is this – a prouncement of ‘talaq’ in a state of anger is valid, especially as he pronounced it three times in a row. In short, you are no longer married.

Please refer to this excerpt from The Ruling on Divorcing While Angry and Pronouncing Three Divorces:

Finally, it should be noted that, if a woman heard her husband pronounce three divorces and has no doubt in this, but her husband is doubtful, then it will not be permissible for her to treat him as her husband. It will be necessary for her to consider the marriage to be over, thus not let her husband have a husband-wife relationship with her, as the Fuqaha mention that a woman is like a judge (al-mar’atu kal qadhi), meaning that she will be considered a judge with regards to her own situation. (See: Radd al-Muhtar, 2/432). Yes, if she is also doubtful, then she will act according to the procedure outlined above.

In conclusion, you mention that you remember your husband pronouncing divorce three times, thus three divorces have into effect, thus the marriage will be considered to be over. You will not be allowed to return together until after your waiting period (iddat) is over, and until you marry another man and consummate the marriage, get divorce, and complete your second waiting period, because of explicit texts of the Qur’an and Sunnah.

Even if your parents and former husband do not believe you, please know that it is still binding upon you. You are ultimately the one responsible for your own soul.

Divorce

Dear sister, from what you have described, it sounds like you have been divorced for quite some time now. Please make your taubah, and make a plan to move forward with your life as a single mother.

There is much stigma attached with being divorced in the Muslim community. Please know that in your case, as in many others, divorce is a mercy from Allah. You have the opportunity to live a peaceful life with your daughter now. He remains her father, and has rights to interaction with her.

Parents

I am sorry that your parents have pushed you back into a relationship with your former husband. They love you, and want what is best for you, and in their mind, that means staying married to your former husband.

It is obligatory for you to treat your parents with respect, but there is no obeying creation in the disobedience of Allah. Be tactful, respectful, and wise. If they will not listen to you, then seek out a compassionate local elder and/or scholar who can persuade them that you are in a state of divorce.

I pray that over the course of time, your parents will soften their stance.

Mutual respect

Allah wants goodness for you in this world and the next. It is traumatising and deeply disrespectful for a husband to threaten his wife with ‘talaq’ every time he loses his temper. By the same token, it is unacceptable for a wife to goad a husband through belittling him.

I pray that Allah heals you and your former husband, and grants you both whatever is best for your dunya and akhirah.

If Allah writes marriage for you in the future, then I urge you to please study the inward and outward laws governing a successful Islamic marriage. Educate yourself through lesson sets such as this.

Support

Who can you reach out for support during this time? Do you have close friends or siblings you can lean on? What is your financial state right now?

Please look after your spiritual, physical and emotional health during this stressful time. Your daughter needs you, and you can only give her love and support after you have nourished your own self.

Spiritual nourishment

I urge you to stand up in the last third of the night, even if it’s 5-10 minutes before the entry of Fajr. During this time perform the Prayer of Need, pour out your sorrow to Allah, and trust that Allah hears you.

I encourage you to draw comfort from the beautiful duas from this resource: Selected Prophetic Prayers for Spiritual, Physical and Emotional Wellbeing by Chaplain Ibrahim Long.

May Allah make this transition easier on you, and reward you for every discomfort you endure for His sake.

Please see:

Am I Still Married Despite My Wife Claiming That I Have Divorced Her?
Is It Valid to Divorce Someone While Angry or During Menstruation?
What are the Wisdoms behind the Rulings on Divorce in Islam?
Love, Marriage and Relationships in Islam: All Your Questions Answered

[Ustadha] Raidah Shah Idil

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil has spent almost two years in Amman, Jordan, where she learned Shafi’i’ fiqh, Arabic, Seerah, Aqeedah, Tasawwuf, Tafsir and Tajweed. She continues to study with her Teachers in Malaysia and online through SeekersHub Global. She graduated with a Psychology and English degree from University of New South Wales, was a volunteer hospital chaplain for 5 years and has completed a Diploma of Counselling from the Australian Institute of Professional Counsellors. She lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, with her husband, daughter, and mother-in-law.