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Does Age Matter for Choosing a Life Partner?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

My parents accept the man I love but his parents are opposed because I am elder than him. My parents are old and they want to see me married soon, so what can I do? I don’t want to marry without their consent.

Answer

Thank you for your question. I empathize with your difficult situation with his parents. Falling in love and not having a future guaranteed for you is heart-breaking. May Allah Most High make this easy for you and make it happen if it is the best thing for you.

Without Consent

Marrying without consent or knowledge of the groom’s parents is something that is permissible in the religion but frowned upon. It leads to cascades of problems and requires much healing afterward. Children are usually victims of the process as well. No matter how old your parents get, it is not worth rushing into marriage in the wrong way. See these links for more information:
Can I marry without my parents consent and knowledge?
Can I Marry Without the Consent of My Parents?
Can I Marry Without My Parents’ Consent?
Is It Valid to Marry in Secret?
Can We Get Married Without Involving Our Parents?

Istikhara

Although you feel that the man you love should be your spouse, you should not make this decision without praying Istikhara: The Prayer of Seeking Guidance. You should cut off communication with him so that you don’t fall deeper into this attachment and objectively ask Allah Most High if you should truly pursue this. Try to pray istikhara for at least 7 days during tahajjud time. The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “Our Lord who is blessed and exalted descends every night to the lowest heaven when the last one-third of the night remains and says: Who supplicated Me so that I may answer him? Who asks of Me so that I may give to him? Who asks My forgiveness so that I may forgive him?” [Abu Dawud]

If You Feel Positive

If you feel that Allah Most High is guiding you to pursue this, you should sit down with his parents so they have a chance to get to know you. Your suitor should also sit down with his parents and tell them how serious he is, and that he needs their support to marry you.

I have seen that good character usually transcends all cultural expectations, and is the only thing parents really care about and lasts forever. Treat them well always, help them, bring them gifts, and most of all, make their son happy; they will be happy.

If You Feel Negative

If you feel that things are just getting harder and nothing is being facilitated for you, then walk away. It will be hard, but you will need to forget about him completely and trust that Allah has a better plan for you. See it as a protection, Allah could well be saving you from a lifetime of hardships. Submit to His will and be avid for what He desires for you and not what you desire for yourself.

Always Put Allah First

As a rule, make sure Allah is first in your life. Learn all of your personally obligatory knowledge, apply it, and increase it. Give charity because it alleviates all problems, take care of yourself, and keep yourself busy with acquiring a useful skillset, beneficial hobby, or whatever brings you good and pleases Allah Most High. Always thank Him for everything you have, he will give you more, by His grace. May Allah reward you both and give you the best in both worlds.

[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.

This answer was collected from Seekersguidance.org. It’s an online learning platform overseen by Sheikh Faraz Rabbani. All courses are free. They also have in-person classes in Canada.

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