Islamic marriage advice and family advice

I disagree with Islamic marriage requirements

want marriage, marriage, not ready

Salam,

I am a seventeen-year-old boy living in America. My parents are very traditional and bring up marriage frequently; the thing is, I don't want to get married because there are things about Islamic marriages that I do not like.

 

  • Firstly, I think the notion of the man being the provider is outdated. In the future, I know I will be working hard for my money, and I don't want to give it to someone just cause I'm married to them.

 

  • Secondly, I don't want to pay for marriage gifts, celebrations, and alimony to the woman after a divorce. Why is it that a man still has to do all these things in a world where women are fully capable of supporting themselves? Does Islam allow for prenups that can prevent me from losing my assets in the case of a divorce?

 

  • Thirdly, why is it the case that a man is in the wrong or even sinning if he does not have to have children when his wife does? Why is withdrawn before ejaculation looked down upon? I understand that she has a right to have children, but how is it logical or fair that I am still expected to take care of that child when I had no say in its birth?

 

  • Lastly, I don't like the idea of marrying someone I barely even know. When it comes to something as big as marriage, I don't really care for the words of others (her parents, community, etc). I would much rather get to know the person better myself, but Islam doesn't allow dating.

 

Can anyone help me answer my questions? I am always wondering these things, and it is starting to make me believe that marriage is a pointless thing that would harm me more than benefit me.

good guy


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6 Responses »

  1. Asalamualaykum good guy,

    First off, if you don't want to get married right now, nobody can force you, not even your parents. That is unislamic. Marriage should never be a compulsion. That said, I think your questions draw a picture of things you need to work on in order to ever be prepared for marriage, even in the future. I will address your points one by one.

    You write:

    1. Firstly, I think the notion of the man being the provider is outdated. In the future, I know I will be working hard for my money, and I don't want to give it to someone just cause I'm married to them.

    Any money that you earn in the future is from Allah alone. Yes, you work hard for it and are responsible for doing that work, but in the end, no matter how hard you work, the benefits of that work remain in Allah's handsl. He can give or withhold as He pleases.

    Marriage requires putting one's own own ego aside, sublimating to higher qualities and character, and sharing. You can work out with your wife what kind of economic structure, bank accounts, etc. you want in the house, but sharing your wealth with your wife and future family should be viewed as a positive activity. By giving them the comforts of life to the extent of your capability, you are also contributing to your own house in Jannah, Insha Allah. So try a different perspective.

    2. Secondly, I don't want to pay for marriage gifts, celebrations, and alimony to the woman after a divorce. Why is it that a man still has to do all these things in a world where women are fully capable of supporting themselves? Does Islam allow for prenups that can prevent me from losing my assets in the case of a divorce?

    The nature of man...the way Allah has created the man, is different from how he has created woman. Men have more physical strength, while women have more emotional strength, as almost a rule (there are always exception of course) This being so, it makes sense that the man be the main provider, even if the woman is working too. Furthermore, I don't know how familiar you are with the work world, but even now, in the 21st century, woman are struggling to earn as much as men do for the same work. There is poor equity in earnings between men and women. Until that changes, you cannot say that women have the same opportunities or capabilities to support themselves as men do.


    3. Why is it the case that a man is in the wrong or even sinning if he does not have to have children when his wife does? Why is withdrawn before ejaculation looked down upon? I understand that she has a right to have children, but how is it logical or fair that I am still expected to take care of that child when I had no say in its birth?

    A man never has "no say" in a child's birth. It takes a male and a female to produce a child.

    4. Lastly, I don't like the idea of marrying someone I barely even know. When it comes to something as big as marriage, I don't really care for the words of others (her parents, community, etc). I would much rather get to know the person better myself, but Islam doesn't allow dating.

    When it comes to something "as big as marriage," you should be open to all sources of information about the person, because this person will accompany you through your life and on your way back to Allah. One must not assume that one's judgement alone is needed and/or sufficient. In fact, the younger that you marry, the more you should rely on others' information about the person, because you still have many deficits in knowledge, experiences, and insight into yourself.

    I am glad you wrote here with your dilemma, as you've taken the first step in being ready for marriage, even if it is not something you are looking to do right away. Please don't worry about losing wealth, losing ego-centric things, things that won't matter as much as you get older. Still work your hardest, do your best, and leave the rest to Allah. Allah helps those who help themselves, after all.

    Best,

    Nor
    IslamicAnswers

  2. Good Guy,
    Some Muslim girls your age have some of the same beliefs as you do about marriage. I suggest that when you are ready to get married that you seek someone with the same thought process as yourself. I know a teenage girl that does not want a husband to take care of her. In fact, she wants to earn more money than her husband and doesn't expect a man to pay for everything. This girl doesn't want children and doesn't expect to take anything she didn't bring to the marriage if there was a divorce. You can get to know whoever you are interested in by going on chaperoned dates with a married couple so you can get to know her first. So again find a girl who thinks as you do, because they do exist. When you do decide to get married just place everything in the marriage contract that you both want and expect.
    Salaam,
    Z

  3. Firstly, I think the notion of the man being the provider is outdated. In the future, I know I will be working hard for my money, and I don't want to give it to someone just cause I'm married to them.

    You should know that our provisions/rizq in this world is already written/maktoob 50,000 years before Allaah Azza wa Jalla created the universe. Whatever that’s supposed to be yours, will be yours. Whatever that’s not supposed to be yours, you will not get it until The Day of Judgment. The wealth and whatever that you are supposed to give to your wife and children, are written for them by Allaah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala as their rizq. You are merely a vessel, a way of that rizq to come to them. BUT, they are obligated to respect you, to be thankful, and to obey you as long as it is not disobeying Allaah.

    Also remember that we can work hard, we can plan, we can bust our ass off, but in the end, ALLAAH is the one who decides the end results. You may work hard, you may work three jobs, you may earn hundreds of thousands of dollar, but if Allaah decides, He can take those all away from you in a blink of an eye.

    So when you work, what you earn, your wife and children have a right on part of that, as Allaah has written those as their rizq. If you decide to not give them their rights financial/not to support them, Allaah is The Most Wealthy, and He will provide for them and give them their rizq. But on what account? You’ll be sinning, and maybe your wife will have to work in a mixed environment with other men. Maybe one of those men will be treating her better than you, and she will be tempted and ended up divorcing you or bringing other fitnah in your family/marriage … Or Allaah will provide for your wife and children from somewhere, but He may decides to give you a disease that you end up have to pay lots of money to the doctor just to stay alive.

    Just think about that for a while.

    Plus each morsel of food, each penny of money, you spend on your wife and children, are shadaqah. You’re investing on your aakhirah/afterlife.

    Also, some scholars said that the wife and children have to obey the husband because he is spending part of his wealth for them. So if you don’t spend on them, they don’t have any responsibility to obey you or even to show respect to you. What kind of marriage are you planning to have?

    Secondly, I don't want to pay for marriage gifts, celebrations, and alimony to the woman after a divorce. Why is it that a man still has to do all these things in a world where women are fully capable of supporting themselves? Does Islam allow for prenups that can prevent me from losing my assets in the case of a divorce?

    You don’t need to have a big celebration for your wedding. A nikaah is simple, just the contract between the man and the woman, the woman’s walee, and two witnesses. That’s it.

    Then you can do waleemah, which is maybe just a simple dinner. For gifts, that depends on the woman, and how much you want to show her that you love her and respect her and want her to be your wife. And mahr/dowry, as it is her rights, she can ask for whatever she wants. You can agree or you can refuse, or you can try to negotiate.

    Alimony to the woman is paid if you give her a divorce, or a Shariah court decides that you need to pay her because you owe her (did some abuse happen, did you harm her, etc). You must pay for your children until they can support themselves and/or married. If she asks for a khula, then she has to pay you back her mahr so that you will let her go. You have to support her as long as her iddah.

    My advice is to learn about the fiqh of marriage in case of discord/divorce. You can have prenups, but talk about it with the woman you're about to marry.

    Thirdly, why is it the case that a man is in the wrong or even sinning if he does not have to have children when his wife does? Why is withdrawn before ejaculation looked down upon? I understand that she has a right to have children, but how is it logical or fair that I am still expected to take care of that child when I had no say in its birth?

    The woman will also be sinning if the man wants kids and she refuses. You must have the talk with the woman you’re interested in marrying, how many kids you’re planning to have, and when. If she agrees, you can get married. If she doesn’t agree, then don’t marry her.

    Also, please know that ALLAAH decides if you will have kids or not. Some couple have sex everyday and has no kids. Some couples have sex once and they have kids. Children are your provision/rizq, so Allaah is the only one who can decide.

    Lastly, I don't like the idea of marrying someone I barely even know. When it comes to something as big as marriage, I don't really care for the words of others (her parents, community, etc). I would much rather get to know the person better myself, but Islam doesn't allow dating.

    If you think “dating” is getting to know someone, you’re totally wrong. Dating is more like “I go out with you so I can sleep with you”. The divorce rate in the US is 50%, and most of those people are dating for years, maybe lived together, and have kids together before they get married. You will not know someone fully until you live together with them, and you see their negative side. When a couple is “dating”, they only show their positive side and hide their negative side.

    My suggestion is try to be transparent to the woman who you try to marry. Ask her questions that are important to you. Find someone you can talk to. And get to know her in halaal ways. You can meet her while chaperoned, and talk to her without being alone with her. You two can sign a marriage contract, but withheld the waleemah for a few months while yo two get to know each other. There are ways. Don’t be discouraged.

    • "If you think “dating” is getting to know someone, you’re totally wrong. Dating is more like “I go out with you so I can sleep with you”." - I'm not sure where you got that from but that's completely incorrect.

      People don't just date others just to sleep with them.

      • Asim,

        I think both you and I know where unsupervised frequent meet-ups tend to go. We're not above the sahabah in our emotional intelligence or self control in times of temptation. If they need to hear this advice right from the prophet ... then we should take serious heed too.

        You're may not going to do something haram like making out or sleep with each other on the first or second private date ... but it sure will lead you down that path.

        If you have non-Muslim secular friends, ask them "how important is it to you to sleep with someone before you get married to them?" or strait up ask them "Do you think people usually sleep with each other while they're dating each other? Do you think it's weird if after they meet up privately a few times they don't end up sleeping with each other?"

        I think their answers will help paint a realistic picture of the conventional secular definition of dating and what it's aims and goals are or arn't.

  4. Assalam alikum warahmatullahi wa barakatu,

    In Islam marriage has many different rulings. In the current state of your mind that the marriage will harm you more then benefit you will lead to the conclusion that you should avoid marriage in near future. So under current state it may be Haram for you to get married Because Islamically you need to sacrifice a lot to make marriage work in the current state of things. Even with giving 110% percent there is a high divorce rate. So be careful and learn around the topic.

    Your questions are in regard to capitalistic marriage (Most people can not differentiate the difference between Islamic marriage and the capitalistic marriage hence the high divorce rate is the norm. Yes in the current capitalistic system there are no benefits of marriage to the men full stop. This is why people in the west avoid marriage. You are not the head of the house hold but another guy your wife knows (A lot of Muslim families lack the knowledge of Islam). That's why it is important that the girl you marry is from a knowledgeable religions family.

    You need to ground yourself in Islam before you take the step of moving in to a marriage. Capitalistic world view requires that men maximize the earning potential in this world with out regard to halal or haram. Under this world view men are required to work all the time. Which is only a certain segment of men do but not all.

    Under Islamic world view one minimizes the worldly gain. Maximizes knowledge and benefit the self and others (Family) with a sharp focus on the hereafter. So if the woman you marry has a sharp focus on the next life she will maximize the little you earn and bring happiness in you life and your kid's life. But on the other hand if she wants lots of money at any cost. You may put up with it for a while then just prefer to walk away from the marriage.

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