Islamic marriage advice and family advice

False Quran Promises and Forced Marriages

Ring and shackle

Asalam o alaikum,

I am a female doctor, 25 years old, working and living in the Middle East. Like any other fresh graduate, I am struggling to enhance my career. For this I am giving exams for medical specialization. I am currently living in the Middle East on my mother's family visa (because she too is a doctor and an employee here) and so I am still dependant on her for anything. I had to give a medical exam (PLAB for UK) on 12th of March in Dubai and for that I needed my mothers official permission in order to obtain visa to travel there as she is my Visa Sponsor.

For this, she kept a condition:

"If I need her permission to travel & obtain visa, I must swear on quran that i will close my eyes and without questioning or saying anything, I will marry/engage/do anything related with anyone she asks me at whatever time in life".

And I did this because I could not afford to lose my chance of not appearing in the exam.

For starters, I have my own crisis of faith, which is a matter solely between me and my God and I am struggling with understanding my religion and my purpose of existence, which alhumdolillah I am doing well with. However, now the problem is different, whether or not I am sure of my beliefs and faith. Also, the relationship I have had with my mother, ever since I started living with her 8 years back (before that I used to live with my grandparents) has been a rollercoaster ride. We hardly ever get along; she is very short tempered and very stern in her views and approaches in life, where she never shows flexibility and I am guilty of being involved in numerous arguments and misbehaviour during the arguments with her. Most of our arguments have been on my marriage. She is obsessed with my marriage, even though she herself got married around 30 years of age and as is the case with medical professionals, most of us don't stand anywhere solid in our profession until we are 27 or 28 years because of the numerous licensing and residency exams that we have to write. I, like my mother, am very ambitious about my career and so, my simple basic demand is to keep me away from marriage and topics like that until I enter a residency program. This is not acceptable for my mother because she likes to follow the societal rule "Get the girl married by 25, after that she is a burden and not fit for marriage."

My concerns:

1. Firstly, my mother made me promise on quran. As far as I know, majority of scholars don't approve of this because swearing on quran/Mushaf is not exactly equivalent to swearing on the name or attributes of Allah as Mushaf contains ink and paper too. So is this a valid promise?

2. Secondly, my mother also made me swear on quran to marry anyone she tells me, at anytime without me saying a word. Even though I love my mother immensely and I have no doubt my mother will always do things in my interest and will sincerely try to find the best husband for me; I for one am not ready for marriage at this time because of a lot genuine reasons and despite sincerely trying to meet every eligible proposal I get, I still don't feel happy marrying anyone of the proposals my mother has put forward to me. I also am not interested in anyone for the sake of marriage, per se. So basically I swore on quran to do something my heart is completely against just to satisfy my mother's condition.

3. Lastly, I know shariah allows adult mature muslims to marry people of their own choice. In my situation, however, my mother has made sure I do not have any choice or say in choosing a partner for my life.

Kindly guide me what I can do in this regard, as I certainly can not marry just anyone for the sake of marriage, especially when I don't feel ready or inclined towards any guy as of now and also, what I can do about the quran promise.

If i have to offer Kafaara, what should that be and in this situation, how shall I deal with my mother, because ofcourse I dont want to upset her as well and also don't want to upset my Creator.

JazakALLAH and blessings be upon you all!


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3 Responses »

  1. I'll try to answer this inshallah.

    1. As a Muslim, you cannot swear by anything other than Allah. Therefore my understanding is that a promise made on the Quran is invalid. However you may still want to make kaffara to feel better about the situation.

    2. Your mother seems very manipulative. She has no right to force you into marriage regardless of what promises you've made, especially since you made them under coercion. Perhaps she just wants to feel that she has some control over the situation. My advice would be to seriously consider any proposal your mother brings you, but do not let her push you into marriage if you're not ready. If she brings up this promise, be honest and tell her that a promise made on the Quran is invalid and you have no intention of marrying someone just because she asks you to do so.

    3. You have a right to chose your life partner and make your own decisions regarding how you live you life. Pleasing your mother does not mean giving up all your autonomy, and that is not what God wants from us when He asks us to obey our parents. Rather, we should treat them with respect: that means respecting their opinions and wishes for us while making our own decisions and having our own opinions. The two are not mutually exclusive, although some parents make it seem that way. Ultimately you are the only person who can take responsibility for your life, so you need to do what's best for yourself.

    I am not sure, but I think it's possible that your mother made you make this promise because she's worried that your prospects for marriage will decrease in the UK and she wants to feel that she has some control over the situation. I hope that she will not actually act on this. However if she does, remain respectful of her and give her suggestions honest consideration, but ultimately do what's right for you. The last thing you want is to get married under duress and end up resenting your mother for the rest of your life.

  2. بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم‎
    Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim

    Asalam Alaikom Sister,

    I hope this message reaches you in time and I will do my best give you guidance.
    First of all I like to clarify that, I am not a Scholar.

    I am human being same as others but I myself would like to help Inshallah. =)

    When you moved to you mothers side from you Grand parents. It's not right for your mother to make you keep such promises to make by naming it on the Qur'an. Rather it should be sworn (Promise) to Allah only.

    You Mother Doesn't have any rights in a way to make you marry a brother of her choices.
    Because once you're married, the questions that you will ask is:

    Will I be happy with the brother?
    Will I get to know him better? ( when you just met him out of the blue?)
    Will he treat me right? etc.

    And Also it will be the Male side such as a Father, brother, uncle (Dads brother) Sheikh or The king of the country can be you Wali (guardian) to get you married and he will be the one to say yes to approve this marriage. Not the Mother.

    Because you will answer to the Scholar (Sheikh) that do you want to marry the brother?

    you do have a right to comment on what you want and need.

    Force marriage is not acceptable in Islam.

    To briefly answer you concern:

    1: It is wrong for your mother to make you a promise to be sworn on the Qur'an.

    Islam has its own rules and doesn't mix with social or tradition rules. People in this generation bring the old rules and mix it in the religion.

    Which isn't reasonable, by that there's so much informal action that can happen which comes into wrong guidance.

    2: You mother can't be the guardian for you, to give out her approval to marry the brother. It should be a male guardian as I mentioned earlier on.

    And if you heart isn't happy about this then you know it's obvious that it's wrong to do such action.

    3: Again force marriage in Islam is not Allowed.
    There are limits on which parents can control their child but force marriage isn't one of them.

    In conclusion

    Knowing that you're in Dubai. Try to visit the Dubai courts and seek some guidance and Inshallah they will help you there. (Note: try to be there early like 9 am time)

    Speak to a Scholar in Dubai and explain your situation to get better guidance.

    Either of them will do and Inshallah Allah will help you.

    here is an example of sources from the Hadith you can have look at. It's not much but It's the least I can do Inshallah =)

    Should there be anything else, please don't hesitate to reply back and I will respond as soon as I can.

    May Allah forgive me If there's any error I have made on this post. My intention is to give guidance based on what's correct and from the book.
    If there is please inform me on my correction.

    Jazakallah Khair



  3. Sorry the comment didn't add the link for some reason:

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