Islamic marriage advice and family advice

My controlling mother dictates what I must wear

control mind madness pressure


I am living in my own home but very close to my parents after the breakdown of my marriage. I visit my parents frequently and understand the importance of listening and obeying parents. However, my mother is extremely traditional and set in her way. If I visit her I am expected to wear the traditional shalwar kameez to please her. however if i pop over even for five minutes dressed in a long dress or top and trousers (fully covered) she stops talking to me and on ocassions cried and cried.

Everyday she says she will never ever be happy with me and I will never make her happy if I continue to wear anything besides shalwar kameez. That means wearing shalwar kameez in my own house, when I go out etc etc. She is extremely controlling.

Will Allah swt punish me for displeasing her in this way? Should I still be forced to conform to her ways?

I don't want to be punished for this and I hate this control she has over me whilst I'm almost 35!!


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7 Responses »

  1. Walaykumsalaam Bluebella,

    Allah has stated in the Quran that women must guard their modesty: " Say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty ; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what must ordinarily appear thereof. " [Quran : 24.31]

    According to 'Syed MA Rahman' as stated on, below are seven conditions for a woman's dress in Islam:

    1. Clothing must cover the entire body, only the hands and face may remain visible (According to some Fiqh Schools) .

    2. The material must not be so thin that one can see through it.

    3. The clothing must hang loose so that the shape / form of the body is not apparent.

    4. The female clothing must not resemble the man's clothing.

    5. The design of the clothing must not resemble the clothing of the non believing women.

    6. The design must not consist of bold designs which attract attention.

    7. Clothing should not be worn for the sole purpose of gaining reputation or increasing one's status in society.


    Islam does not say one must dress in Pakistani attire, or English attire, it states we must dress in 'Islamic' attire. So our attire can lean towards any culture, as long as it meets the above conditions of hijaab. But some people give more importance to culture than religion and in doing so confuse they very simple matter. They feel it is dishonouring and disrepectful if their children wear anything other than the clothes of their ethnic culture. My father used to dislike me wearing long dresses, skirts or jeans (even if they were covering), and wanted me to wear 'salwaar kameez' all the time. So infront of him I would wear what he wanted.

    Dear sister, try to explain to your mother that as long as you are wearing covering clothes, it doesnt matter whether you are wearing Eastern or Western clothes. If she does not understand, then just wear your 'Salwaar Kameez'/Pakistani attire infront of your mother and wear your other clothes when she's not around - as long as its pleasing to Allah(swt). In the wider picture, its a small matter and you'll get much reward for avoiding argument and for pleasing your mother. There are much more important things that you may need to put your foot down on with your mother in the future, save your energy for those things, so take this matter lightly.

    Perhaps though, you need to deal with the issue of her controlling you in general. Try to distinguish between what is important and what is not - you can rise above some issues like 'dress'. But other matters such as 'raising your own children' and 'your marriage partner' are more important and you should not allow your mother to determine these things - this is my opinion.

    Say this to yourself: 'I am in control, because I am compromising on a matter with my mother that is not so important. I will wear what my mother prefers in front of her and wear what I want otherwise - as long as I know it is pleasing to Allah. InshaAllah I will get reward from Allah for this.'

    SisterZ Editor

    • I agree. Pick your battles. Your mother is not asking you to do anything haram. She only wants to see that her culture continues and is not lost. So give her this little thing. When you visit her, wear the shalwar khameez. When it comes to other things that are more important, hold to Islamic teaching and follow your heart.

      Your parents won't live forever. One day you might say to yourself, "I would gladly wear shalwar khameez if only I could have my parents back with me again."

      Wael Editor

  2. SisterZ and Wael have put it beautifully.

    What will you lose by listening to your mother on this? Yes we all have a right to chose our clothing, food, etc (as long as its within the boundaries set by the Deen), however, remember the central point - she is not asking you to do anything haraam and if such a trivial issue, that of you dressing in something traditional, makes her happy, then rush for the opportunity sister and earn the pleasure of your mother and Allah by pleasing her.

    Allah (Swt) has instructed to us not to utter the word "Uff" to our parents in the Quran. Do you think you can stand before Allah and justify your mother crying because she wanted you to wear something (that was halaal for you) and you didn't want to out of personal choice?

    Our parents have sacrificed greater things in life due to which we exist today and are who we are. And no sacrifice on our side can ever replace that, let alone that of trivial ones like dressing how they want us to.
    Having said that, dress infront of her the way she wants you to but of course in ur own home ,dress how you want to. What isnt a sin and she doesn't know cant her her!
    Be a little wise with the situation 😉

    Was salaam

    • My parents don't let me wear anything except shalwar kameez and hijab that is till my legs. Im. Just 14 and people in my society don't really patch up with me and its kinda hard to live in this society with all this situation
      Please help!!

      • If you live in India, Pakistan, or Bangladesh then I can see why they would tell you. Many men will stare at you wearing pants. If you were living in the western country you can wear western clothes as long as it’s modest, not tight and revealing. My friend’s dad only wanted her to wear salwar kamis at home but wasn’t required to wear it outside. As it’s not suitable at workplace. Talk to them why it’s a problem, explain how your dress up is modest.

  3. Salaam Sister Z, Wael and Faith,
    Kindly thank you for taking time out and responding to my question.... after reading your answers, i do feel a little silly for posting my question. At the time of posting it really was getting me down but in the grand scheme of things, it is a very small matter. Thank you for pointing this out to me in a beautiful way.
    May Allah swt reward you for your answers.

    • Dear Bluebella

      Don't feel silly, sharing this with us helped you see the picture from another viewpoint, so its all good :).

      Besides, I remember many a time when I used to have a rage over the same issue.


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