Answered by: Maulana Burhaan Rahman
I am a Moroccan lady aged 36 years. I have accepted a proposal of a married Indian man for marriage as I was happy with his way and belief and religion. I am also in communication with his parents and sisters who supports us and my parents and his parents have also communicated. Our wedding has been delayed due to pandemics and a travel ban. I am doing a job at a pharmacy and I wear a hijab properly but my pharmacist is a man and I also serve the male client and have to interact with them.
My father is a retired army person, gets a pension, and has some fields of the olive tree which is his source of income. My 1 brother is not married and doing a good job in traffic police and my other brother is unemployed.
My fiancé is not in favour of me working in this mixed environment.
- In these circumstances is correct for me to do the job while I have 2 earning blood relatives to support my family and fulfil my needs? Or it obligation of my father and brother to take care of my needs. Please give a preferential Islamic opinion on this. I believe that if I leave my job my regular expenses before marriage shall take care of my future husband and not my family as I feel the burden to ask my parents. Is it the correct Islamic way? Will I be sinful to work and or my family is sinful to allow me to work? I think my family has spent on my education so I can earn for myself and support them and they don’t have any further responsibility.
As my fiancé is from India and they have different traditions where brides give dowry to their husband’s family (Alhamdulillah my fiancé is against it don’t want any dowry from me) and in our tradition of Morocco wedding expenses before walima is taken care of by the groom. To avoid traditional differences, at the start of our relationship decided that we will not follow any tradition- my father will do my marriage and walima will be done by the groom. He accepted that he will take care of all my expenses after marriage. He agreed to my demand of mahr of 30000 dirhams and other expenses to make marriage papers.
As our marriage was difficult to register in Morocco due to polygamy we decided to register it in Bahrain. He took care of all expenses for the processing of iqama there. Earlier he was in the opinion that my mahram should book my own ticket as he was not responsible for expenses before marriage but later on when I insisted he agreed to book tickets for my mahram also to travel along. But due to lockdown, we cannot travel to Bahrain and the amount there got wasted. At this time when I saw girls around me like my cousin been married to an Emirati man – has bought her a house after marriage and some of my friends receive bank cards to spend from their boyfriends MY QUESTION IS – some of my relatives suggest my fiancé is a miser because he has an opinion that his responsibility to take care of my expenses start after marriage and before marriage, it’s the responsibility to my earning brother and my father. He has just gifted me the gold ring of my choice once before marriage as an engagement gift. Although he has shown brought some gifts like 15 dresses as per their culture and watches and others for me and my family which he will bring along when he comes for the wedding to my country – he did not ask me for my needs and expenses that I will need for the wedding as he thinks it family responsibility. I could not say it to him due to my self-respect and self-esteem.
With this situation, I want to Islamic know
- Is this man a miser because he doesn’t ask me to pay for my needs if I leave my job? Did he refuse to buy me a house to save of my future rights before marriage? Is he responsible for my pre-wedding expenses other than Dowry (Mahr) which he is ready to pay?
- My sister suggested that he is a miser and I should not continue with a stingy man because he doesn’t want to spend on me before marriage other few gifts and expenses to make the marriage paper? Please guide is it an Islamic way to ask for gifts I desire or does it come under demand?
- Does he have any responsibility for my expenses before marriage and what is the responsibility of my family for my expenses before marriage?
- Can I break my relationship in misguidance of my friends and cousin’s sister by saying him stingy and miser and forgetting what he generously spent for the cause of our marriage in Bahrain.
- Am I correct to hold him responsible in my mind for being stingy and miser and am I correct to ask him for pre-wedding expenses even in the case where he swear to take care of my every expense after marriage and claims that his first wife also he did not demand anything and started taking care of expenses after marriage?I read on one website that it’s not allowed to marry miser so Please guide me and suggest Islamically. I like him dearly as I selected him after doing mashwara and Istekhara and now I am confused with other people’s words if he is Islamically miser or not under the above situation of rarely giving gifts and taking care of my expenses or I should hold my family responsible for my wedding expenses? Will I be sinful for breaking relation against my commitment at the start of the relationship that my family will be responsible for the wedding and he will be responsible for walima at his place against both of our traditions Islamically now due to my perception of thinking him as miser as our marriage is very near and our proposal was established 3 years back. Shall I be feared under the hadith where Prophet Sallahu Alayhe Wasallam said, woman, shall go in hell frequently due to their ungratefulness, as they forget all good deeds done my man when he does cannot do a one desired thing?
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
1) Islam advises the woman to stay at home mostly and not engage in the outside world (of work etc.) too much (for safety and security etc.) if there is no need.
وقرن في بيوتكن ولاتبرجن تبرج الجاهلية الاولي
Remain in your homes and avoid making a spectacle of yourself, as was the custom during the previous age of ignorance. [Surah Ahzab verse 33]
So the advice Islam gives the believing women is that you must not engage in mixed environment/work if there is no need to do so whilst other members of the family (father/husband etc.) is able to provide for the basic needs in life.
2) When it comes to a husband taking care of the expenses of the wife, it comes down to necessities and not the extravagant things (as we like to say finer things in life).
Our beloved Prophet (SAW) has mentioned:
فَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ فِي النِّسَاءِ فَإِنَّكُمْ أَخَذْتُمُوهُنَّ بِأَمَانِ اللَّهِ… وَلَهُنَّ عَلَيْكُمْ رِزْقُهُنَّ وَكِسْوَتُهُنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوف
“Fear Allah regarding women…verily, you have taken them as a trust from Allah. Their rights over you are that you provide for them and clothe them in a reasonable manner.” [Muslim Hadeeth no: 1218]
In Al-Binayah it mentions:
حق النساء في النفقة من الحقوق الواجبة واللازمة، ولذلك ثبت في الحديث الصحيح عن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم أنه اشتكت له هند فقالت
“يا رسول الله! إن أبا سفيان رجل شحيح مسيك، أفآخذ من ماله لولدي؟” فقال “خذي من ماله ما يكفيكِ وولدك بالمعروف”.
The right of the woman in terms of spending (from the husband) is obligatory and it’s a necessity. That’s the reason why it is mentioned in an authentic narration when hind (RA) complained to the prophet, “oh messenger of Allah, my husband (Abu Sufyan) is being stingy (with wealth), can I take money from him for my son?” the messenger (SAW) replied, “take however much money you need for yourself and for your son”. [Al Binayah vol 2 page 40].
Refusing to buy you a house does not mean he is a miser at all. Houses are expensive and it’s not easy to just buy a house from nowhere. As long as you got a roof over your head it is fine.
3) As mentioned in answer 2), your husband is not a miser as long as he provides you with the basic needs and not being able to adhere and purchase those things which are deemed “unnecessary” is not part of the definition.
4) He must be a man that has enough money to provide for himself and his family as mentioned in the phrases in Al-Binayah in answer 2). And we also should remember the verse in Surah Furqan.
وَالَّذِينَ إِذَا أَنفَقُوا لَمْ يُسْرِفُوا وَلَمْ يَقْتُرُوا وَكَانَ بَيْنَ ذَلِكَ قَوَامًا
And those, who, when they spend, are neither extravagant nor niggardly, but hold a medium (way) between those (extremes). [Surah Furqan verse 67]
5) Breaking relationships is what Shaytan loves to see. In such situations, the best thing to do is advise and speak to your relatives with wisdom and astuteness explaining what they may not understand.
Allah mentions in the Qur’an:
وَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ الَّذِي تَسَاءلُونَ بِهِ وَالأَرْحَامَ
And fear Allah, from whom you demand mutual (rights), and (do not sever) kinship ties.
6) When your husband mentioned that he shall take care of your expenses after marriage etc., it would be in the meaning of the necessities of the married life and not anything outside the necessities or extravagance unless he specified certain things. He said it in a general way and the general meaning shall be taken.
As the sacred law of legal maxim states:
The general (custom) is said to be the authoritative (decisive factor to consider).
Only Allah knows best.
Written by Maulana Burhaan Rahman
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham