Islamic marriage advice and family advice

My mother in law wants me to wear abaya at home

Salaam aleykum,

Thank you all for helping me with my previous posts and I appreciate your understandin ! I wanted just to ask: is it needed to wear abaya in front of my in laws? I really feel very bad because my mother in law ask me for this, so basically I want to  feel free at home and her jealousy is killing me ! I see all my friends wearing shirts and wide panatalons or something wide but not abaya and definitely not black as we should be outside!

I appreciate modesty in Islam and this is why I love my religion so much and would always stick up for it but most of my arab women friends always wear shirt and jeans at home and not cover up so much ! So I wonder is right or wrong?

I do not say anything bad of my mom in law maybe she is right but I thought it wasn't so strict!

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6 Responses »

  1. Dear Yasmin, Walaikumsalaam,

    There are so many misconceptions floating around about our beautiful religion and unfortunately many a time our own people are the ones who are behind these misunderstandings. MaashAllah you are a newcomer to Islam, so you are still trying to learn the basics, it would be nice for your mother in law to give you the love and guidance you need.

    Women most definitely do not have to always wear black when they are outside; there is nothing I have read in any Ayah or Hadith to state so. The reason why this misconception exists is because very often we see Arab women dressed in black. This is nothing more than a cultural fashion. We can wear any colour we want to, as long as it is modest and does not attract negative attention.

    As for hijaab, it is only required for you to observe it infront of non-mahrams, you are not required to observe hijaab infront of your husband's father. Maybe your mother in law has been brought up in a cultural environment which is why she thinks you are must wear abaya at home; this is not from Islam.

    Can you use the Quran and Sunnah to explain to your mother in law that you do not need to wear hijaab or abaya at home if there are no non-mahrams there. I would remind you though that even when in front of male mahrams (exc your husband), women should still be modest in what they wear and bear in mind different cultures have different dress styles, for example some cultures find jeans and small tops a little revealing. There are lots of beautiful clothes you can wear and hopefully if your mother in law is sincere, she will be ok with you once you have explained.

    If your mother in law persists in her demands, I don't think you should give in as this will become one of many petty things you find yourself giving into over the years. As long as you know you are dressing according to Islamic requirements while also taking into account cultural dress differences, be confident whilst still humble and diplomatic (easier said than done I know). Hopefully she will get bored of bothering you about this matter - seriously how long can she go on for? :O)

    Best Wishes with the battle dear sister!!

    SisterZ Editor

  2. are there any non-mahrams at the home that she's asking you to wear abaya?
    if not, then no, you don't have to wear abaya in front of your father-in-law.
    does she wear abaya at home?
    i know some women who think they need to wear jilbab/hijab at home. this is incorrect of course, but some people have wrong understanding of deen and are not shy to ask other people to live islam the way they think is correct because they think they are calling you to guidance.

  3. SisterZ and cowsgomoo are correct in everything they've said, and I was going to ask the exact same thing! Does your mother-in-law wear abaya at home? If not, then she really cannot expect you to do so. In any case it's not required and you should wear something comfortable but modest, as long as there are no non-mahrems present.

    Wael Editor

  4. I agree with all the replies here...but one thing you havent made clear is what you mean by "IN-LAWS". If you mean just your husbands parents then yes..hey are your mehrams and no need for abaya (although you should remain modestly dressed..but no need for hijaab)...however not all in-laws are fact husbands brothers are the higest level of NON MEHRAM..and you should observe caution when interacting with your husbands brothers more than any other man...the second higest level of NON MEHRAM is your sisters wife...and not strangers as some cultures pakistan/india there is a practice to wear burka when going out but to be free and easy when interacting with your male relatives that are non mehrams such as cousins , brother in laws...this is haram and the status of mehram is decided based on which NON mehram you are most likely to develop an attachment to as there is more interaction and access to these men then there is a chance of developing a friendship with a stranger while buying your groceries...this is why some cultures who have a lack of knowledge of islam have destroyed its beauty and logic and this in turns brings about evils in society where women are interacting with their relatives leading from light flirting to more serious sins...all this because the basic understanding of NON mehram is not observed that the NON mehram you have easiest access to is the one you must do hijaab the most (both in speech and in body)

  5. P.S ...Also would like to add ..there are also degrees of Mehram as well as NON MEHRAM...your brother and father may be your mehram but you are not permitted to sit with a bikini or naked in front of them....but you may do so infront of your husband....this is why there are also degrees of non mehram where brother in laws and close male relatives are to be avoided more than a stranger you pass by on the street.

    May Allah guide is All

  6. Moms are always very sensitive about their children especially about the daughters and Muslim parents are the most because of the guidelines laid down by Islam for Islamic wearing. And I think that is the reason your mother in law wants you to wear Abaya at every place.

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