Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad
Question: Assalamu alaykum
My teenage son is not practicing Islam as his parents are. He doesn’t pray, he avoids wudu, he is into music too much. He listens to us for a few days then goes back to his attitude. He snaps at us, gets angry, and avoids the family. My husband nearly hit him recently because he disrespected me and his sister. We are sorrowful that we don’t have Allah’s blessings in our home. I supplicate to Allah five times a day for him. I read Qur’anic translations to him but he is not interested. How do we bring him back to Islam?
Answer: Assalamu alaykum sister,
Thank you for your question. I empathize with your challenge to make your son understand the importance of praying and being with the family. This world has a way to rope teenagers in, with peer pressure and the desire to try new things and be different.
The absolute best possible advice I can give you is to read this article by Hina Khan-Mukhtar: Parenting: Planting the seeds of prayer in our young ones
It is never too late for a person to change, but keep in mind that children who rebel in their teenage years may need time. They might find their guidance before they are twenty, or perhaps much later.
Your job as a parent is to connect with them emotionally and start bonding with them. After this bond is established, your understanding and respect for each other will increase. You need that respect and love as a stepping stone to start speaking to your son about his religion. This love and respect will also enable him to want to spend time with the family.
Another thing that you should always do is to befriend good religious influential people. Keep them around you and your home. Pray together as a family and avoid the haram in your home as much as possible. Pray on time, cover correctly, pay zakat, don’t ingest anything unlawful and safeguard yourself from backbiting or usury. Take a free course on Seekers to learn your personally obligatory knowledge. These things will ensure that you have barakah in your home no matter what your son is doing.
Never give up on your du`as. Allah hears all that you ask and He will decide what to give you and when. Be patient until then and be kind to him. Also be grateful that he is not involved in much worse things, like drugs or sex.
Please see the links below for more information. May Allah reward you.
How to Counsel a Teenager with Religious Shortcomings?
I Struggle with My Prayers and Am so Worried About My Family Members Who Do Not Pray. What Do I Do?
My Teenager Is Disrespectful and Has No Empathy. What Do I Do?
[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
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. Afterwards, 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.