Islamic marriage advice and family advice

My husband converted but now does not believe that he is a Muslim; Is my nikah valid?

Marriages betweent the people of different faiths are becoming a norm.


I am a Muslim woman born and raised in a Muslim family. I've always had faith in Islam and would never even consider changing my faith as Islam is my way of life. However, I strayed and hence have some major complications in my life and I would really like some advice on my issue below.

10 years ago, I met my husband. We dated for approx 6 years on and off; we were in a physical relationship. He was a born and raised as a Hindu but did not really practice his religion.

When we decided to get married within the first year of the relationship, I had told him that it would only be possible if he was a Muslim. By this time in our relationship, I had left home for him and we were living together and I was not in contact with my parents or even talking to my family.  I had moved in with him.

I eventually moved out and told him that if he cannot convert then, I wouldn't be able to marry him and would both have to move on.  He loved me very much and said he would look into Islam and maybe consider it. In between this time I became pregnant and told him that I would not get rid of my child and that I could not marry him if he was not a Muslim (his parents found out I was pregnant and asked him to move out and disowned him).

So, he converted to marry me and said he would look into it believing he is a Muslim as he had said the shahada. After a few months he told me that Islam was not for him, but he promised that the children will be raised as Muslims and he will not interfere when it comes to raising the children in Islam. But from then in my heart I have had doubts whether my marriage is valid, if he does not believe that he is a Muslim and think of Islam as his religion.

Since then, mashallah I have two children, a son five and a daughter three, whom I wouldn't change for the world; as my husband promised the children are being raised as Muslims and even if he does not agree with anything, he does not interefere when it comes to the children. My husband also takes my son to Eid namaz because he says its part of his son's religion.

We have both regained contact with our parents and they know the situation, and left me to find the right way in my life.

Two months ago my husbands father passed away, as a son he fulfilled his duties when it came to performing all the funeral rites. His parents live in a different city, since the passing of his father he has left the family home and moved there to look after his mother and has asked me to move there too. We will not be living in the same house as his mother but close by so as he can look after his mother. Before I moved there, I really need to clarify the doubt that I have lived with for such a long time. I have never found peace in my heart, not knowing and need the answers to my questions.

My husband believes that there is only one God and everyone prays to one God, he is  genuinely a good person and believes that religion does not define a person. He has an open mind when it comes to Islam but does not consider himself a Muslim and at his death he would make arrangements to be cremated.

So you probably know what my question is? If I carry on living with him, is my marriage valid? Am I living in sin? Please could you explain to me how and what should I do. What options do I have? Does he need to convert and believe he is a Muslim for my marriage to be valid?

My children love their father to bits and it breaks my heart because they do miss him very much, but I really need to follow the right path for peace at heart and an example to my children.  Please advise.

Jazak Allah,





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11 Responses »

  1. assalamalaikum,
    [22:73] O people, here is a parable that you must ponder carefully: the idols you set up beside GOD can never create a fly, even if they banded together to do so. Furthermore, if the fly steals anything from them, they cannot recover it; weak is the pursuer and the pursued..
    [22:74] They do not value GOD as He should be valued. GOD is the Most Powerful, the Almighty.
    Idol-worship not to be taken lightly
    God warns us that idol worship is an unforgivable sin if maintained until death. So God willing we should try not to fall into such an offense that has grave consequences.
    [4:116] GOD does not forgive idol worship (if maintained until death), and He forgives lesser offenses for whomever He wills. Anyone who idolizes any idol beside GOD has strayed far astray.
    [4:48] GOD does not forgive idolatry, but He forgives lesser offenses for whomever He wills. Anyone who sets up idols beside GOD, has forged a horrendous offense.
    If we do fall into idol worship by ignorance, we pray that we realize it before it is too late, and repent for it. Otherwise all our works might be nullified. God has made this point very clear in His revelations:
    [39:65] It has been revealed to you, and to those before you that if you ever commit idol worship, all your works
    will be nullified, and you will be with the losers.
    Even the messengers of God are not exempt from this rule:
    [6:88] Such is GOD's guidance, with which He guides whomever He chooses from among His servants. Had any of them fallen into idolatry, their works would have been nullified.
    Narrated Abu Huraira :
    Allah's Apostle said,
    "Every child is born with a true faith of Islam (i.e. to worship none but Allah Alone) but his parents convert him to Judaism, Christianity or Magainism, as an animal delivers a perfect baby animal.
    Do you find it mutilated?" Then Abu Huraira recited the holy verses: "The pure Allah's Islamic nature (true faith of Islam) (i.e. worshipping none but Allah) with which He has created human beings.
    No change let there be in the religion of Allah (i.e. joining none in worship with Allah).
    That is the straight religion (Islam) but most of men know, not." (30.30) [Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 2, Book 23, Number 441]
    The Primordial Covenant
    "And [remember] when your Lord brought forth from the Children of Adam, from their loins, their seed, and made them testify of themselves, [He asked]: "Am I not your Lord?" They said "Yes, we testify!" Lest you should say on the Day of Resurrection: "Of this we were unaware.Quran, The Heights 7:172>
    The definitive attribute of man is his ability to forget.The very word used in the Quran for "man," insan, is related etymologically to the word nisyan, or forgetfulness.
    Thus the human as he is initiated into the world progressively loses his awareness of the immediate presence of Allah.It is the function of religion to make us remember.
    1.This is related to the five stages of the lives of man, one of which, is the 'preconceptual life', which took place before we came into this world.
    2.This world, known as dunya in Arabic, is derived from the word 'low' and is seen in Islamic cosmology as the lowest world. Indicating that there are worlds above this one, and that man descended from the highest, which is from the presence of Allah.
    This stage of preconception is when, according to the Quran,
    Allah took all the created souls, and brought them together where He said to them
    "Am I not your Lord?" and the souls responded in affirmation,
    "Yes, we testify!"
    The tailbone, the last bone at the end of the backbone is the part of the human body that is never lost. It does not even decompose completely in the ground.
    In several Hadith of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) is reported, that the tailbone is the origin of the human being. And on Judgment Day God will emerge a human being from his or her tailbone.
    The holy scripts are:
    1) Abu Huraira narrated, that the Prophet (pbuh) said:
    "All of the Sons of Adam (men) will decay except for the bone of coccyx (tailbone). From it he (man) was created and by it he will be reconstructed."
    2) Abu Huraira narrated, that the Prophet (pbuh) said:
    "There is nothing of the human body that does not decay except one bone; that is the little bone at the end of the coccyx of which the human body will be recreated on the Day of Resurrection."

  2. Salamualaiki sister,

    You haven't mentioned how your marriage was done. Was it a Nikah or simply a court marriage or a something different?

    This is very important to know whether your marriage is valid.

    If it was a Nikah, then did you have your Wali and two witnesses over it, and the Mahr Exchanged?

    I ask this because you said you had moved out of your house and were not in contact with your parents. If so, your father wouldn't have been in favor of the Nikah. Then who was the Wali?

    The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “There is no marriage except with a guardian.” Narrated by al- Tirmidhi (1101); classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Irwa’ al-Ghaleel (1893).
    And the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Any woman who gets married without the permission of her guardian, her marriage is invalid, her marriage is invalid, her marriage is invalid.” Narrated by al-Tirmidhi (1102), classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Irwa’ al-Ghaleel (1840).

    So, if you did not have a Wali, your Nikah was invalid and any physical relationship you had with him was haraam.

    After this, when he converted to Islam he did not believe in Allah and His Messenger Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam, which is the first requirement of one's Islam. And then he turned away from it and became Kaafir again.

    At this point, he was no longer your husband (or perhaps after the Iddah). Because, a Muslim woman can NOT marry a Kaafir and a Mushrik man. You say he believes in One God. But he is a Hindu, right?

    Hence, the conclusion is that if you had no Wali, your marriage was invalid and you were never married. Even if you had a Wali, your marriage has been nullified, when your 'husband' turned away from Islam.
    The answer is that you are not married to him. You need to ask him to become a true Muslim if he intends to continue the relationship, then perform a fresh Nikah fulfilling all conditions, if he accepts Islam by choice. But if he chooses not to, then he is no more than any other non Muslim non Mahram man to you.

    Muhammad Waseem Editor

  3. Salaams,

    Sister, based on what I'm reading in your post, your husband is not currently a Muslim. I would have to seriously question the sincerity of his "conversion" prior to marrying you, since he apparently was not a Muslim prior to that and shortly thereafter renounced Islam. It sounds like he just did the technical thing to marry you.

    In any case, once he made that decision that "Islam is not for him", then he had three months to change his mind (however, there may be other caveates that apply to apostates on that merit alone, which I am not educated about). Once that three month period is over, you are considered divorced from him as he is not a Muslim. Any point of you remaining with him beyond that would be considered as you living in zina and disobedience. Needless to say, if his conversion was insincere to begin with, then arguably the whole marriage was invalid from the start, regardless if the tenets of the nikkah is kept.

    So yes, at this point (assuming those 3 months have passed since his rejection of Islam after "converting") you are not considered to be in a valid marriage and should separate yourself from him immediately. If he sincerely decides at some point in the future that he wants to be Muslim, you may be able to remarry him at that point. However, considering his history and current stance I personally wouldn't hold my breath on that.

    It's unfortunate that things have gotten this complicated with your family. Your children love their father, you seem to love their father, and he seems to love all of you. However, ideally the two of you should never have gotten together to begin with. All of those years of having a haraam "dating" relationship, with a sexual level of intimacy before marriage, brought you to the road you are now on. The only way to untangle it now is by doing the right thing, which looks like it would feel unnatural or difficult for both of you (by you leaving his presence, or by him converting halfheartedly). I hope for the sake of your destiny in this life and the next you will repent and start making the best choices going forward.

    Islamic Editor

  4. Assalaamu alaikum
    I have a very similar problem to this sister. Just recently my husband of 8months who is also a revert and used to be a hindu told me that he didnt believe in Islam, he doesnt beleive in anything. I was completely shocked ofcourse as he have been together for almost a year now and this is the first i have heard of it. Straight away i thought is he still me mahram then.
    We had a proper nikaah. So do we wait for 3months until it is certain and then we can no longer live together.
    I just really dont know what to do, i feel so hurt and lonely.
    Jazakallah hu khair

    • Wa Alaikum as Salam sister,

      May Allah Give you Sabr.

      As for your husband, I believe you have consummated your marriage. If so, then according to al Mawsoo'ah al Fiqhiyyah of the Hanabilah, you would need to wait for 3 months to give him a chance to revert to Islam.

      But if you have not yet consummated the marriage, then your Nikah is annulled like what ibn Qudamah mentioned in al Mughni.

      Imam Malik probably believes that even if you have consummated your marriage, you would need to immediately separate from him.

      Something I found in Tafsir ibn Kathir about the daughter of our Rasool Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam:

      Abu Al-`As bin Ar- Rabi` was married to Zaynab, the Prophet's daughter. She was a Muslim, while Abu Al-`As was still an idolator like his people. When he was captured during the battle of Badr, his wife, Zaynab, sent his ransom, a necklace that belonged to the Prophet's first
      wife Khadijah.

      The Prophet became very emotional when he saw the necklace and said to the Companions,

      (If you decide to set free the prisoner who belongs to her, then do so.)

      They did, and Allah's Messenger set him free. His ransom was that he send his wife to Allah's Messenger . Abu Al-`As fulfilled his promise and sent Zaynab to Allah's Messenger along with Zayd bin Harithah. Zaynab remained in Al-Madinah after the battle of Badr, which took place in the second year of Hijrah, until her husband Abu Al-`As bin Ar-Rahi` embraced Islam in the eighth year after the Hijrah. She returned to their marriage without renewing the dowery.

      End quote...

      Muhammad Waseem Editor

  5. asalaamualaikum.
    i was wondering if you know how the eid of a divorcee of an annulled marriage should be. my husband is no longer muslim and i am living with my parents. i am in my iddah period. can i still wear make up on eid?

  6. you cant wear make up whilst in iddah...

    • Salaams,

      Please bring the proof for this, as the only Hadith I am aware of stipulating such things refers specifically to the iddah following the DEATH of a husband, not the divorce iddah with a living man. Thank you.

      -Amy Editor

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