Islamic marriage advice and family advice

What if our children will have genetic abnormalities?

is first cousin marriage allowed in Islam


Assalam u alaikum,

I have been engaged to my cousin for three and a half years. I realize long engagements are not encouraged in Islam, but I do believe everything happens for a reason as you will find out in this post. Although I agreed to it willingly and happily, I started having doubts a year after the engagement.

As far as I know, he is of good character and good in terms of Islam too, but I started feeling like we are not compatible as time passed, because his upbringing and mine have been different and I stopped talking to him much over chat (never spoke on call as I was not comfortable with it). I also just don't feel comfortable with him.

So I performed Istikhara for divine guidance and I found out that my previously diagnosed autoimmune disease (diagnosed in 2019) can possibly be partly genetic, and as doctors suggest, cousin marriages are known to pass on genetic diseases as well as cause birth defects. This motivated me further to end this engagement. I spoke to my doctor about it and she suggested I can get genetic testing done before marriage to assess the risks of such a marriage, as this disease is still somewhat a mystery to doctors and there hasn't been much research done on it.

I do not want to go ahead with this marriage anyway due to the compatibility issues, but I've also understood now, long after my engagement, the dangers of cousin marriages, which I wasn't aware of before.

Now my issue is that I've tried explaining the compatibility issues to my parents, but they do not understand as they are very traditional and believe that compatibility comes after marriage. Then I tried to convince them that I do not want to risk my future children's health and to bring up the disease issue in front of my cousin's family but because the engagement period has been extended for so long, they believe it will cause major family issues and they are opposing me. I want to talk to my cousin directly but that will also cause a lot of family issues.

I am stuck and don't know what to do. Please advise.

Thank you for reading all the way!

Jazak Allah

Your sister in Islam

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1 Responses »

  1. Salam sister , pls do not use genetic disorder as an excuse. Your first most reason not wanting to marry your cousin was lack of compatibility. Be honest and them your parents that you are not interested in marriage with your cousin. Then mention about the genetic disorder and its a secondary but most concerning issue.

    Understand that you are afraid and 3 years is an investment in time but do not let that scare you into thinking you have to marry him. It is your life, your parents are not the one marrying, IT IS YOU. Face the hardship now by telling them you do not want marriage. The initial stage would be hard but you will also get peace and ease of mind. May Allah guide you and grant you a worthy spouse most suited to you. All the best.

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