I Am Now Religious, but My Boyfriend Is Not. What Do I Do?

Answered by Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil

Question: I am in love with someone who is not practising religion. I didn’t use to practise it either, but now I am, and we’ve been together for the past 5 years. I’m trying hard to change him, but it’s hard for him. Do I keep trying to change him?

Answer: Assalamualaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I pray this finds you well. May Allah reward you for seeking out clarity on this issue.

Moving forward

Dear sister, alhamdulilah for the gift of Allah guiding you to the deen.

Your priority right now is to remove yourself from a state of sinfulness. This means that you must end your relationship, make a sincere repentance, and trust in Allah. None of us have the power to ‘make’ anyone else religious.

If he wishes to be closer to Allah, then he needs to do so without you. Trust that Allah will send him the support he needs. If he does make a sincere repentance and approaches you for marriage, then please perform the Prayer of Guidance about what to do. If Allah makes it easy for you both to marry, then that is a sign for you. If He blocks that path, then that is a sign for you.

However, if he makes no attempt to change and does not make he effort to marry you, then please move on. Heartbreak is one of the hardest things to experience in this dunya, so please turn to Allah in this time, and reach out to close friends or family for support. If you have nobody to talk to, then speak to a culturally-sensitive counsellor who supports your decision to save yourself for marriage.

Marriage

The best thing you can do for yourself is end this relationship, and start a new chapter in your life.

I encourage you to do this course to give you a deeper understanding of marriage in Islam: Islamic Marriage: Guidance for Successful Marriage and Married Life.

Please read Surah Al-Waqi’ah regularly to increase your provision. Perform The Prayer of Need and ask Allah to bless you with a husband who has both deen and good character. May Allah make this trial easier for you to bear.

Please see:

A Reader on Tawba (Repentance)
My Heart Has Been Broken by a Man But I Can’t Move On. How to Get Over This?
Selected Prophetic Prayers for Spiritual, Physical and Emotional Wellbeing by Chaplain Ibrahim Long

Wassalam,
[Ustadha] Raidah Shah Idil

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil has spent almost two years in Amman, Jordan, where she learned Shafi’i’ fiqh, Arabic, Seerah, Aqeedah, Tasawwuf, Tafsir and Tajweed. She continues to study with her Teachers through Qibla Academy and SeekersHub Global. She also graduated with a Psychology and English degree from University of New South Wales.