My husband and I have been separated for 3 months. Recently he came to my parents to discuss our marriage. During the discussion his dad implied to my dad that if my father wanted me so much there was a way round that but that they didn’t want to go there. My husband was also present as was I. The discussion became heated and I left the room. As my husband was leaving he shouted “come her I have something to say” but I did not go to him. On his way out he told my sister “tell your sister it’s over”. A few days later I received a divorce petition. I was unsure as to the status of my islamic marriage and asked my husband to clarify his intentions. He said he meant that our relationship is over but not our marriage and that when he uttered these words it was to indicate the start of the civil divorce process. Can you please shed some light on what the status of my Islamic marriage is as I am unsure. My husband wants to talk about reconciling but I am afraid that if I go back I may be living in sin.
In the name of Allah, the most Beneficent, the most Merciful.
The words which effect divorce are of two types:
1) Clear and plain words (sareeh)
2) Ambiguous and allusive words (kinaya)
Sareeh means expressly pronouncing the word divorce or words derived from it, such as: “I divorce you” or “you are divorced” etc. Clear and plain words effect divorce whether one intends divorce by them or not. (Hidayah, V2, P359, Raddul Muhtaar, V2, P465, Fatawa Hindiyah, V1, P354)
Kinaya means using words that are not exclusively prescribed for issuing divorce, but alludes and hints to it. Kinaya words do not effect divorce unless one intends divorce by them or it is determined by the circumstance one is in. (Hidayah, V2, P373, Raddul Muhtaar, V2, P501, Fatawa Hindiyah, V1, P374)
Regarding the aforementioned situation, if your husband intended divorce from the sentence “it’s over” then the marriage will come to an end. If he did not intend divorce then the marriage will remain intact.
It will be permissible for you to try to reconcile the relationship and it will not be considered unlawful.
Only Allah Knows Best
Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham