Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad
I am 23 years old and I want to marry a girl that I really like. She wants to become Muslim but I know my family will tell me it is not time to formalize anything. What should I do?
Thank you for your question. Marrying young is a sunna but at the same time, many shun the idea, especially in the East. I am not sure where you are from, but it seems like it is better for you to start working on the approval process without delay.
Let her Convert First
I believe that if this girl wants to marry you, she should hasten to become Muslim and remain so for a year before she formalizes anything with you. She should know how it is to live a Muslim lifestyle and be sure that she is sincere and able to commit. She should have enough conviction and be committed to raising her children as a Muslim.
Thereafter, you should pray Istikhara: The Prayer of Seeking Guidance, and ask Allah Most High if you should pursue marrying her. If you feel that it is positive, you should talk to your parents.
Compromise with Your Parents
If your parents agree but simply want you to wait, you should communicate with them politely that you don’t want to wait long and that you are serious. Tell them that you need their help and support and that your istikhara has come positive. I am sure that you can work out some compromise.
There is no quick fix for this. I can’t tell you to marry her in secret or to run off and elope. But if you are willing to give her the dignity and respect that she and her family deserve, take your time and make the right steps. She could be your wife before you know it, in sha Allah.
The Prophet’s Advice
Finally, consider the advice of your Prophet [Allah bless him and give him peace]. The Prophet, may Allah bless him and give him peace, said, “A woman is married for four things: for her wealth, for her lineage, for her beauty or for her piety. Select the pious, may you be blessed!” [Bukhari; Muslim]
Please see the following links for more information. And please take the marriage course mentioned in the links before jumping into this. May Allah give you the best of unions.
[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqida, fiqh, tajweed, tafsir, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She later moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.