Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad
My friend is a revert, and her family is Islamophobic and ignorant. They disrespect her and give her food without telling her if it’s halal or not. She wants to escape her situation by getting married. But her family doesn’t listen when she presents a potential Muslim man; rather, they tell her profane statements about Muslims. What advice would you give her if she wants to escape and get married?
Thank you for your question. I empathize with the frustration that your friend is going through. There are rulings in place for converts, and she should take advantage of them.
Permission to marry
A convert girl does not need the permission of her non-Muslim father or mother to marry. She doesn’t need to present suitors to them, and should not expect their approval for obvious reasons. Your friend should politely tell them that she plans to marry and hopes to find a man that suits her and will also respect her non-Muslim family. She should take things slow and try not to blow up at her family, but rather communicate and express her feelings to them. They do love her, so she should appeal to that.
I generally advise all converts to practice Islam for a year before getting married. One needs time to get accustomed to practicing, learning, and applying the knowledge acquired. Doing this without the cultural baggage of a spouse makes it easier for the convert. Is it possible for your friend to move out? Can your friend spend some time away from home? Perhaps work or study more?
Please see these tips for converts, and make dua for your friend’s well-being and strength of faith and resilience through this test.
May Allah give you the best of this world and the next.
[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria, for two years, where she studied aqidah, fiqh, tajweed, tafseer, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her master’s in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan, where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She recently moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.