Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad
I have been in touch with my father for roughly two years now. He abandoned me as a young child to raise his other children abroad. He is Muslim, but I was not raised as a Muslim. He refuses to have a relationship or meet with me unless I convert to Islam.
I am finding it very difficult because I have no one to guide me on my religious journey, and I feel such emotional pain from not having my father around, and now it feels like he is avoiding meeting me. How do I resolve this, and how do I move forward in learning to be Muslim? So far, I am reading the Quran and practicing Salah.
Thank you for your question. Honestly, I admire your strength. Instead of responding to him in anger at his absence, you are considering his request and finding a way to practice Islam. No child deserves to be abandoned, whether Muslim or non-Muslim, and I praise your resolve and confidence.
It wasn’t clear from your question whether you have converted yet, but you are absolutely on the right path and on the right website.
No better thing is there for a new Muslim than reading the words of God himself. Reading the Quran with its translation, I recommend Yusuf Ali’s translation because I read it as a teenager, is the most eye-opening and enlightening thing for you. You will find in its injunctions, prohibitions, warnings, commands, stories, morals, rewards and punishments, and much more. Try to read it every day, even if only a little, and contemplate its meanings.
Du’a is worship, as the Prophet told us (Allah bless him and give him peace). Use this powerful tool to invoke Allah with no other mediator in between. Ask Him genuinely to guide you to the truth and to help you practice. Ask Him to send you a good company that can teach and positively influences you. Ask Him to uncover the steps you should take in your journey and let you reach your spiritual goals.
Please see this link about du’a:
Is Making Dua in My Heart Enough?
Take a Course at SeekersGuidance
Knowledge is power. Knowledge gives you the power to change yourself and confidently practice your religion. Please see this link for answers on conversion and links to courses about Islam.
Muslim Convert: Would My Family Be Okay With Islam?
Learn about the daily rituals of Muslims and the do’s and don’ts of Islam.
Tell your father you want to learn more about Islam and ask him what he recommends you read. Take some time to visit a local mosque and spend some quiet reflection time there. Tell him that you are trying your best and would like him to try and meet you halfway through this effort. Pray that Allah opens your hearts to each other and develops a bond that will never be broken.
[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.