Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad
I am a young man who fears his sexual appetite. I have a health issue whereby I have more of an urge to urinate, and the doctor has said that it requires surgery but did not recommend it, nor did I want it due to the consequence of not being able to have children. I still live with my parents, and if my mum sees me fasting regularly, she is not very happy because it affects my health. She worries that I don’t eat enough already. How can I control such desires? I may not be in a position for marriage at this stage.
I empathize deeply with your situation. Indeed, struggling with natural sexual urges can be a young single man’s biggest test, and I pray that Allah eases it for you.
There is no simple solution to this question. See this link for an excellent answer to your question: Controlling Sexual Desires When Marriage Is “Put on Hold” In short, one must try to endure the desire while preparing oneself to marry as soon as possible.
Although you say you are not in a position for marriage, I suggest you hasten to find a way to get into that position. The Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “O young people! Whoever among you can marry should marry because it helps him lower his gaze and guard his modesty (i.e., his private parts from committing illegal sexual intercourse, etc.), and whoever is not able to marry should fast, as fasting diminishes his sexual power.” [Bukhari]
Any young man with strong sexual urges should not wait so many years to be established in every aspect of life while he suffers without intimacy. It is okay for a young couple to struggle financially in the beginning. Families are usually well-established financially after ten years of marriage or more. One doesn’t have to own a house before marriage but instead has enough means to take care of a wife and gradually build up his wealth so they can enjoy the transition together and bond through it. Many wealthy families I know now tell me they had to handwash their clothes as newlyweds!
Until then, you can try beneficial physical and spiritual activities to distract yourself until you marry.
Du’a and Worship
First, ask Allah Most High fervently to help you through this. Allah’s help is usually subtle, and you won’t realize your supplications have been answered until one day, you wake up and see that you can’t remember the last time that you had a sexual thought. The first thing is to lower your gaze and avoid TV shows, music videos, or movies that freely expose one to lewd behavior. This temptation will undoubtedly make things worse.
Now is an excellent time to turn to Allah Most High wholeheartedly and ask him to help you worship Him as we should worship Him. Review your obligatory knowledge and establish some good habits. Pray on time, complete with your daily 12 rak’a of supererogatory (sunna) prayers. Pay zakah on time, fast once a week, or once in two weeks if your mother cannot handle more. Tell her in advance, so she anticipates it.
Other Beneficial Activities
The list of skills and hobbies that a person can learn are endless. These will help distract you from your issues. Take any sport, exercising, fishing, carpentry, cycling, or anything you fancy. Also, busy your idle time with charitable service. You could work with various organizations, needy families, orphans, the homeless, the disabled, and seniors, and volunteering is a tremendous charity that refines character and gives a manifold reward. You could also consider jumping into some side hustles for making money, selling junk, or selling on eBay, and the savings would help you prepare for marriage.
And one of the best things you can do during this difficult time is to spend time with scholars or good religious people who influence you positively. They can help you see the world from a different view, and you can enjoy their company instead of being alone at home and suffering.
May Allah Most High make it easy for you, and may you marry a girl who will be a garment for you and her.
[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.