I Work in My Parents’ Restaurant and They Do Not Let Me Pray on Time. What Do I Do?

Answered by Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil

Question: I work at my parents’ restaurant. They wait till they get home to make their prayers up. They won’t let me pray at work and I have to make them up at home. I told them I was going to leave school and find another job to be able to pray on time, but they threatened to kick me out. What can I do?

Answer: Assalamualaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I pray this finds you well. May Allah reward you for seeking out an answer which is pleasing to Him. Please forgive me for the delay.

Parents

This is a delicate situation. I pray that Allah guides your parents and inspires them to uphold their prayer. They are blessed to have you as their son. Continue to make dua for them. Although they are in the wrong for forbidding you to pray at work, you must still treat them with respect.

Reflect on the Prophetic injunction that “there is no obedience to creation if it entails disobedience to the Creator.” [Tabarani, Mu’jam Kabir; Musannaf Ibn Abi Shayba]

Please perform the Prayer of Need in the last third of the night and beg Allah for an opening.

Solutions

Please sit your parents down and explain that you love them, respect them, and that it is extremely important that you pray on time. Make it clear that you will do so quickly, efficiently, and it will not impact on your job performance.

If they still disagree, when you are at work and prayer time enters, is there anywhere for you to privately perform your prayer? Please remain steadfast on praying on time.

Is there a compassionate local scholar, family member or community elder who can speak to your parents on your behalf?

When all else fails, explain to your parents that you will need to look for a new job that allows you to pray. Many non-Muslim employees are very understanding about your need to perform your prayers.

Threats

Some parents make empty threats when their children do not fall in line. I hope that your parents are bluffing. If not, please save up money and be prepared to live on your own, or with a Muslim roommate. Don’t break ties with your parents even if they do kick you out. Visit them, call them, and give them gifts.

Please refer to the following links:

When May Parents Be Disobeyed, and How?
If My Parents Prepare Meat That is Not Halal, Should I Avoid Eating It?
Positive Spiritual Thinking: Choosing Mindfulness (taqwa) and Embracing Trust (tawakkul) by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
What Are Some Prophetic Supplications That Can Help Me Deal With Trials in My Life?

Wassalam,
Raidah

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Photo: Alpha