Islamic marriage advice and family advice

Should I go against my father a second time?

Talking to someone who refuses to listen can be very frustrating. The challenge is to find a way to get through and make yourself heard..

Assalamu Alaikum,

I hope this note finds you in the best of health and imaan.

I wanted your advice on some specific matters in my life that I hope you can help on, InshAllah. I find myself in the most difficult of situations - Allah is the best of Guides, however I wanted some advice, please.

To provide you with some background- I am 32 years of age. Whilst I was studying in university at 20 years of age, I met a guy who was interested in me. I was not practicing at this point in my life, and although we did not pursue a relationship where we met, we were in contact via phone. During this time he proposed marriage to me, and I spoke with my mother about this, however my mother advised me this would not be possible as my father was a very traditional man and he would not agree to a marriage of my own choice.

Despite this we continued to keep in contact, and I continued to convince my parents. I myself never spoke to my father face to face, as I was too embarrassed, however my mother told me she spoke to my father 4-5 times and he did not agree. This continued for a long period of time - up to 11 years. After constant push back we made the decision to have our nikkah done - he was living in Tunisia therefore we conducted our nikkah over skype.

I did not tell my parents about this, as I knew they would not agree, and concealed this from them. The nikkah did not last long for a variety of reasons, and within a year we had separated without consummating the marriage.

I felt depressed and sad during this time, as it constantly played on my mind that I would not be able to get married unless the person knew of my previous nikkah. During this time I spent a lot of time doing astaghfar and asking Allah for forgiveness and to give me a way out of this without having to tell my parents, as they would not accept it as they are very traditional. Even if they were not, it's very difficult for any parent to accept.

Anyhow, it was during this time that my cousin asked his parents to ask for my hand in marriage, as he wished to marry me. Mashallah, he is very practicing, and brings out the best in all those around him. I don't know how, but Allah helped and I gathered the courage to tell him the situation...and regardless of this he was willing to accept me!

I wanted to do things the right way this time around and not conceal anything, and be open and honest. I approached my father and explained that I was happy with this proposal- that was earlier this year. He agreed, and said we would do the Nikkah soon. This did not happen as my mother and extended family members did not want this match, and spoke badly about the guy's father, mentioning how he had spoken behind my fathers back etc etc. I want to be very open clear and honest that this may genuinely be the case- his father may have spoken about my father- however to prove his innocence, he said, "I am not a liar, and therefore those accusing me and my father should sit together in an open forum and see who is telling the truth". He said, "if I am wrong, I will apologize, however, this should not be used to destroy our childrens' lives and happiness".

My question is, where do I stand in terms of my accountability?

My father said I can marry anywhere but here, as it will be a disrespect for him, however I feel as though I cannot marry anyone that doesn't know about my previous nikkah, and not many men -if any- would accept a secret nikkah.

The sad thing is that my father was fine, however due to people who would like me to marry their own son causing fitna, my dad is now totally against this union. Therefore I feel stuck - please, please, please tell me where I stand in terms of not listening to my father? I think about it 24/7, that Allah will hold me accountable and destroy me for not listening to my father.

Additionally I feel utterly depressed - I am 32 and in my 33rd year. I have no husband or children and this now upsets me. Allah does the best for us all -I know that, but surely I have a right to choose my future spouse...especially the potential partner now, as he is very practicing and I genuinely feel like he is a means for bringing me closer to the Deen in each and every way. I believe he is of benefit to me for my Akhirah.

Please, please help...I feel stuck and torn - I appreciate that this is due to my own actions, however I really want to complete half my Deen.

I have been praying Salatul Istikhara and Tahajjud and Salatul Hajat, and this gives me strength to pursue this. However I really want to understand my accountability. As my father lives abroad, engaging with a local imam to speak to them is not feasible ,as they are abroad and always stay there.

Jazakallah Khair and May Allah reward you in this life and the Hereafter.


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3 Responses »

  1. Walaikum aSalaam.

    Anything i say please don't get offended.....

    If your cousin has good character and deen then your father shouldn't refuse. I understand your parents have issues nothing to do with you and the guy in question.. Family nonsense, and you will always have unwanted cousins adding fuel to the fire.

    My question is, why on earth would you want to marry your cousin? I know for most Asian they get excited when their cousin chase them around and is the high light of the girls life to be asked for marriage.

    So many good fine brothers in their deen, looks are out there. Without having family politics, drama nor relations to your family. You made a silly mistake by marrying in secret which is not allowed. Don't do it again.

    Think about the future. Any issues you have with the guy(your cousin) your family relation will fall through. No need to add to current problems.

    Its a test, be patient and look elsewhere. So many guys will look past your mistake. As long you don't repeat it.

    Don't marry in secret, find someone your family who is also happy with. You want their blessings..

    I have a friend who is 33yr old loner. I know another brother who is 32 yrs who is cross-eyed. So you not alone people are in way worst situation than you. Be patient, keep searching. In'sha'allah you will find someone ..


  2. For crying out loud why are you so obsessed with this unconsummated nikah? It really doesn't count and there is no need for you to tell anyone. You should not have told your cousin as there is no requirement to tell everyone everything and as the marriage was unconsummated it really does not matter. You brought shame on yourself and your family by telling your cousin who will use it against you if you don't marry him.

    Marrying your cousin is not encouraged by Islam - you should be thinking about that. If your mum's family say there is something wrong with your cousin's father, they would not be saying it lightly if there was something there - unless of course this is the first time you're hearing about it.

    You should not be making your mother unhappy to keep your father happy - she comes first. My advice is not to go ahead with the marriage, find someone else other than a cousin.

  3. Assalaamualaykum Sister,

    Brother Hussein is right in that a marriage with a cousin is not really encouraged in Islam. I know it's quite popular in some countries, but that doesn't always mean it is the best thing to do.

    Are you quite sure that you are not so interested in your cousin for the mere fact that you are fearful? Fearful that no one else will want to marry you because of your secret Nikah? As an objective reader, I can tell you that your fear is not based in reality. There are all kinds of brothers out there from all walks of life, and you have only to ask your mother and she might even introduce you to a few of them.

    Don't let the issue of people talking behind people's back affect your decision-making either, or leave you with anger or regret. I mean, who are the people who are talking about the "people talking behind father's back?" Aren't they doing the same thing?!

    I think you should put this decision on hold while you sort out your fears and overcome them. No decision should be made on fear.

    Mashallah you have prayed the Salat Al-Istikhara, and that is the absolute best thing you could have done. Please take the advice you are reading here from all of us as Allah's answer to you.



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