Monday, August 30, 1999
Asalaam Alaikum Sister Bilqis,
I am a 21 year old woman and a revert of 2 years. While I
see the need (and feel that I am ready) to get married, I am
not sure that I should do so at this time. I am currently in
the midst of repaying a debt to the state in which I live. The
problem is, I need to repay this debt within a certain time frame
or else interest will accrue on my loan. If I were to get married
and the brother wanted to have children and prefered that I stayed
at home with them (which is what I would like to do when I become
a mother), what would happen if I got into a "child-bearing"
cycle and couldn't repay my loan in time?
I guess my question is: Should I be more concerned with my
obligation to the government (since it could turn into a haraam
situation) or my obligation to my way of life (Islam)?
By the way- I was not a Muslim when I accepted the loan.
Insha'Allah your answer will be of tremendous help in my decision-making!
May Allah reward your efforts in this life! Salaam sister!
As a Muslim, you should always consider
your Islamic duties first. Islam, as your religion, your way
of life, should be the number one priority. You will find there
is seldom a conflict between Islam and the good and reasonable
things of this world.
Often times, because we cannot see into
the future, we assume the worst case scenario or limit our consideration
to an "either/or" possibility. Perhaps you can do both
- pay your debt and get married!
While pursuing a prospect for marriage,
you could continue to pay on your debt. If you find a possible
candidate, be open and honest about your financial situation.
As a Muslim lady, you have the right to a marriage gift from
the prospective husband. There is usually a monetary portion
as well as other gifts (such as jewelry, etc.). There are many
ways that this can be worked out. Some brides may request a lump
sum amount, some may request a specified amount to be given at
agreed upon intervals. If a brother sees you as an excellent
prospect for wife and mother (insha'Allah), he may be willing
to assume payments on this debt as your
wedding gift. There are more options than you are currently considering.
So be creative and see what you can come up with.
While you are right to take your debts
seriously (they are an obligation upon us), and at the same time
striving to avoid the interest, you shouldn't feel that this
must preclude any possibilities of marriage. With faithful prayer
to Allah (swt) and consistent striving toward your goal (goals),
doors may open from places you never considered.
"And to Allah belongs the unseen
of the heavens and the earth...Truly! Allah is Able to do all
things." 16:77 (Sura An-Nahl)