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Siblings Sleeping on the Same Bed

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by DarulIftaBirmingham

Answered by: Shaykh Shafiur Rahman


I am 18 years old female and I share a room with my older brother who is 20 years old. There are only two living rooms in our flat, one is occupied by us two siblings and in another room, our parents sleep. Our room is small and there is space only for one bed (the rest of the space is occupied by study table, dressing drawer, closet and chairs) so we both sleep on the same bed, under different quilts. Does Islam permit a brother and a sister to live in the same room and sleep on the same bed if their family can’t afford a bigger house? (2) At night I wear a knee-length nighty in the room in the presence of my brother, underneath which I don’t wear any pyjama or undergarments. Is it permissible to do so?

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful


We have been guided by the Prophet ﷺ to separate the beds of children from the age of 10.

Abdullah ibn Amr ibn al-‘As said: The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: Command your children to pray when they become seven years old, and discipline them for it (prayer) when they become ten years old; and arrange their beds (to sleep) separately. (Sunan Abu Dawaud, Chapter: When A Boy Should Be Ordered To Offer As-Salat Hadith no. 105)

The great Hanafi jurist Ibn ‘Abidin (may Allah have mercy on him) said: When the boy reaches the age of ten, he should not sleep in the same bed as his mother or his sister or any woman other than his wife.

Therefore, it is even more incumbent on older adults to ensure that they do not sleep on one bed. Ideally, you should make the utmost effort to sleep in separate rooms, for example, if you have a living room then you can turn that into a bedroom for nighttime etc. If that is no other space other than the one-bedroom, then try your utmost to arrange one person on the bed and perhaps another on the floor with bedding.

If there is no space to do that then as a very last temporary resort you may sleep on the same bed but not under the same blanket or sheet and you should make the maximum barrier between the two of you by placing something in between and you should try to sleep on opposite ends of the bed. In other words, you must make the maximum barrier between the both of you. However, you must try your utmost to get out of this situation as quickly as possible according to your ability and capacity. [1]

Only Allah knows best

Written by Shaykh Shafiur Rahman

Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

[1]وَلَا يَجُوزُ لِلرَّجُلِ مُضَاجَعَةُ الرَّجُلِ وَإِنْ كَانَ كُلُّ وَاحِدٍ مِنْهُمَا فِي جَانِبٍ مِنْ الْفِرَاشِ) قَالَ – عَلَيْهِ الصَّلَاةُ وَالسَّلَامُ – «لَا يُفْضِي الرَّجُلُ إلَى الرَّجُلِ فِي ثَوْبٍ وَاحِدٍ وَلَا تُفْضِي الْمَرْأَةُ إلَى الْمَرْأَةِ فِي الثَّوْبِ الْوَاحِدِ» وَإِذَا بَلَغَ الصَّبِيُّ أَوْ الصَّبِيَّةُ عَشْرَ سِنِينَ يَجِبُ التَّفْرِيقُ بَيْنَهُمَا بَيْنَ أَخِيهِ وَأُخْتِهِ وَأُمِّهِ وَأَبِيهِ فِي الْمَضْجَعِ لِقَوْلِهِ – عَلَيْهِ الصَّلَاةُ وَالسَّلَامُ – «وَفَرِّقُوا بَيْنَهُمْ فِي الْمَضَاجِعِ وَهُمْ أَبْنَاءُ عَشْرٍ» وَفِي النُّتَفِ إذَا بَلَغُوا سِتًّا كَذَا فِي الْمُجْتَبَى، وَفِيهِ الْغُلَامُ إذَا بَلَغَ حَدَّ الشَّهْوَةِ كَالْفَحْلِ وَالْكَافِرَةُ كَالْمُسْلِمَةِ !

قَوْلُهُ مُضَاجَعَةُ الرَّجُلِ) أَيْ فِي ثَوْبٍ وَاحِدٍ لَا حَاجِزَ بَيْنَهُمَا، وَهُوَ الْمَفْهُومُ مِنْ الْحَدِيثِ الْآتِي، وَبِهِ فَسَّرَ الأتقاني الْمُكَامَعَةَ عَلَى خِلَافِ مَا مَرَّ عَنْ الْهِدَايَةِ، وَهَلْ الْمُرَادُ أَنْ يَلْتَفَّا فِي ثَوْبٍ وَاحِدٍ أَوْ يَكُونَ أَحَدُهُمَا فِي ثَوْبٍ دُونَ الْآخَرِ وَالظَّاهِرُ الْأَوَّلُ، يُؤَيِّدُهُ مَا نَقَلَهُ عَنْ مَجْمَعِ الْبِحَارِ أَيْ مُتَجَرِّدَيْنِ، وَإِنْ كَانَ بَيْنَهُمَا حَائِلٌ، فَيُكْرَهُ تَنْزِيهًا اهـ تَأَمَّلْ

ص382 – كتاب حاشية ابن عابدين رد المحتار ط الحلبي – باب الاستبراء وغيره – المكتبة الشاملة

This answer was collected from DarulIftaBirmingham.co.uk, which is run under the supervision of Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah from the United Kingdom.

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