Q) I am a 26 years old woman. I was divorced about one week ago, after I left my husband’s home a year before; I took my son who is two years old and stayed with my family. In the beginning of our love marriage I lived with him in his mother’s home. His mother started to interfere in everything in our life. He asked me to work and support him to pay off the loan he borrowed for our marriage. I found a job and helped him; my only condition was to live in an independent place alone far from his mother’s continuous interference. He promised me to do this. His mother was in control of everything at home; my husband was unable to object to anything otherwise she would ask him to leave. She works as well.
I lived with my husband and tried him for two years I found him to be another person different from who I loved; he was just masked before marriage. He started taking all my salary and gives me just daily expenses. Whenever he was in need he used to ask me to sell my gold for him, which I have done, so has he. He used to ask me to borrow from my family, which I did, in return he never gave me anything. I was deprived of everything. He used to say one sentence a lot to me: “you know our circumstances so be tolerant”. He used to hide his wallet in the car and say that I do not have the right to what he has or what he does not have. Problems started to get bigger and bigger, and I kept asking him to find a separate place for us to live.
He has a divorced sister, she works and sleeps in her work place which is a hotel located outside the city, when she used to come to visit us she used to stay up at night outside the home and returns every night after midnight. I did not like the whole situation and I had to tell my respectful husband: “what will the neighbors say about this home we live in, this is shameful” his answer was usually: “I will speak to them” I do not like this, after all he said to me: “these are our traditions, and I cannot leave my mother and sister and live far from them alone” as they are not Arabs.
I was hesitant to tell my family about my situation because they all objected to this marriage and refused it but I insisted on marrying him because I thought he is moral and kind. How blind was I! I told my family that I heard him speaking to his mother complaining about me and she told him to beat me and to take my son from me. Then I left him and went to my family. Two weeks later he came to my family’s home to ask why I left home. I did not tell him that I heard anything. And just asked him to buy us a separate place to live alone. He agreed. We went to see the home we were going to buy, then he changed his mind, this situation remained for two years during which he accused me of having a relationship with someone else, and that this other person is spoiling my mind, this happened because my husband saw me with a man who is a friend of my father taking me from my work place. I found him there by chance and my husband was standing in the street at my work area, I asked this man to take me home because I feared my husband might hurt me. After this he started to defame me and give me two options, whether to stay with him in his mother’s home or to sacrifice all my rights then he divorces me. I of course refused and insisted on divorce, I did not want a separate home anymore.
My husband brought two ‘disobedience cases’ against me, and then I asked for divorce through the court. The last five months I, by chance, spoke with the same man who took me by car from work, he is 14 years older than me. I told him about my story and what happened with me, he stood for me and taught me about life and people, and that there are matters one should not stand silent for them. He told me that accepting to marry my husband was a mistake from the beginning and that I was mistaken when I refused to listen to my family’s advice.
I became attracted to him, although I know that it is wrong. I feel guilty because I love him and he loves me, this was not planned. We met many times, sat and talked a lot and he asked me to marry him before I got divorced. I wish I can accept but I am afraid of the consequences. I fear Allah, I fear I made a mistake when I loved another man while I am still married, although I left my husband 15 months ago, I got divorced about two weeks ago.
Please guide me. Am I mistaken? Is what I did haram? I live in a conflict with myself, I am very confused. I do not want to disobey Allah or commit sins.
A) Praise be to Allaah.
You have done a number of things that are clearly and obviously contrary to sharee’ah, hence we are surprised at the end of your letter where you say “I do not want to anger Allaah or commit sins”! Whatever the case, this is the bad consequences and effect of sin, which is loss of reason and dimming of its light that would lead to the straight path.
Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have mercy on him) said, describing the effects of sin:
… Sin corrupts reason, for reason is light, and sin inevitably extinguishes the light of reason. If its light is extinguished it becomes weak and imperfect. One of the salaf said: No one disobeys Allaah but his reason is lost. This is obvious, because if his reason was present, it would have prevented him from committing sin when he is under the full control of Allaah, may He be exalted, or how could he commit sin openly when He is watching him, and he is enjoying His blessings and His angels are bearing witness over him and watching him, and the teachings of the Qur’aan forbid that and the implication of faith and the remembrance of death and the Fire should restrain him. The good of this world and the Hereafter that he misses out on because of sin is many times greater than the pleasure he may get from it. Can anyone who takes lightly all that we have mentioned above still have sound reason?
… If sins accumulate, then a seal is placed on the sinner’s heart and he becomes one of the heedless, as one of the salaf said concerning the words of Allaah (interpretation of the meaning): “Nay! But on their hearts is the Raan (covering of sins and evil deeds) which they used to earn” [al-Mutaffifeen 83:14] – he said: This is sin after sin. Al-Hasan said: It is sin upon sin, until the heart becomes blind. And someone else said: When their sins and acts of disobedience become many, they encircle their hearts.
The basic principle concerning that is that the heart is corroded (lit. rusts) by sin, so if sin increases, the corrosion prevails until it becomes raan, then it prevails until it becomes a seal, and the heart becomes covered and enveloped. If that happens after he has been guided and had insight, then he will be reversed and turned upside down. At that point his enemy takes over and leads him wherever he wants.
Al-Jawaab al-Kaafi li man sa’ala ‘an al-Dawa al-Shaafi (p. 39).
We are sorry to tell you that each of the sins that you have committed led to another; they affected your reason and your heart, and extinguished their light.
The things that you did which go against sharee’ah are:
The haraam relationship which you formed with your first husband, before you married him. This is clear from your saying that it was a love marriage, and from your going against your family who refused to give you in marriage to him, and now you are doing the same thing with another man when you are still married to the first husband!
We have explained the ruling on correspondence between the sexes in the answer to question no. 34841, 26890 and 23349.
With regard to haraam relationships, please see the answer to questions no. 1114, 9465, 21933 and 10532.
It seems that your job involves mixing with strange men. If what we think is correct, then it is a sin. If it is not mixed, or it is not in a haraam field such as banking or insurance – then there is no sin on you.
Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:
There is no doubt that enabling women to mix with men is the basis of all calamities and evils, and it is one of the greatest causes of calamity that affects everybody, as well as being one of the causes of corruption in public and private affairs. Mixing of men with women is the cause of a great deal of immoral actions and zina, and it is one of the causes of widespread death and ongoing plagues.
Al-Turuq al-Hukmiyyah (p. 407).
See also the answer to question no. 1200.
For information on women working and the conditions of it being permissible, please see the answer to question no. 22397.
In the answer to question no. 6666 there is important advice to do with women working in a mixed environment.
You left the marital home without your husband’s permission, and this was based on something that you heard from his mother and his complaints to her. This does not make it permissible for you to leave the marital home without your husband’s permission. You have the right to a separate home with your husband, but it seems that you waived this right when you first married him and agreed to stay with him in his mother’s house. It would have been better for you to work out the agreement with him when you agreed to help him to bear his living expenses and pay off his debt, and to oblige him to do so via the shar’i court or good and knowledgeable people whom you appointed as arbitrators between you. As for your actions and your leaving without his permission, this is not permissible. Allaah forbade women who are revocably divorced (first or second talaaq) to leave their houses after the divorce, so how about married women? Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“O Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم)! When you divorce women, divorce them at their ‘Iddah (prescribed periods) and count (accurately) their ‘Iddah (periods). And fear Allaah your Lord (O Muslims). And turn them not out of their (husband’s) homes nor shall they (themselves) leave, except in case they are guilty of some open illegal sexual intercourse. And those are the set limits of Allaah. And whosoever transgresses the set limits of Allaah, then indeed he has wronged himself. You (the one who divorces his wife) know not it may be that Allaah will afterward bring some new thing to pass (i.e. to return her back to you if that was the first or second divorce)”
The worst and most reprehensible of these actions that go against sharee’ah is your sinful relationship with that evildoer who pretended that he was saving you from worldly problems and presented himself in the guise of a wise advisor, but in fact he was a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
How could this evildoer agree to meet you and talk with you, and sit with you and discuss with you, and worst of all, he audaciously asked you to marry him when you were still married to another man?! What is very strange is that you yourself say that your husband himself was presenting himself falsely as a good man, and that you were blind when you accepted him as a husband. Do you think that now you are able to see? By Allaah, you are not able to see, and your blindness with regard to your first husband was less serious than your blindness now. You were not married when you formed a relationship with him, but now you are married and you have formed a haraam relationship with that evildoer, who is not content only to come between you and your husband, turn your heart against him and make you hate the idea of going back to him, rather he has added to that his request for you to marry him when you are still married to another man.
What you have done is haraam, beyond any shadow of a doubt. It is revolting and reprehensible even to non-Muslims. No husband would want his wife to be in the situation you are in. No wise person – let alone a Muslim who knows the rulings of sharee’ah – would approve of your marrying this evildoer who has shown his true colours and evil attitude before marriage. That will save you from going though another bitter experience with him. Do you think that he will forget how you betrayed your husband with him? Do you think that he will trust you not to repeat what you did with him? Do not hesitate to cut off all ties with him, for it is a haraam relationship on the one hand, and on the other hand he is not fit to be a trusted husband when he has done such haraam, abhorrent actions.
For information on the qualities of a righteous husband, please see the answers to questions no. 5202 and 6942.
We hope that your regret and taking stock of yourself are a good sign that you have come back to the truth and that your conscience which criticizes you for abhorrent actions and for falling short in acts of obedience to Allaah has come back to life.
Beware of following the footsteps of the shaytaan, for they lead to doom. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“O you who believe! Follow not the footsteps of Shaytaan (Satan). And whosoever follows the footsteps of Shaytaan (Satan), then, verily, he commands Al‑Fahsha’ [i.e. to commit indecency (illegal sexual intercourse)], and Al‑Munkar [disbelief and polytheism (i.e. to do evil and wicked deeds; and to speak or to do what is forbidden in Islam)]. And had it not been for the Grace of Allaah and His Mercy on you, not one of you would ever have been pure from sins”
Do not ignore the opportunity to regret and repent before there comes a Day when neither dirhams nor dinars, neither close friends nor intercessors will benefit a man, and he will bite at his hands in anguish, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“And (remember) the Day when the Zaalim (wrongdoer, oppressor, polytheist) will bite at his hands, he will say: ‘Oh! Would that I had taken a path with the Messenger (Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم).
28. ‘Ah! Woe to me! Would that I had never taken so‑and‑so as a Khalîl (an intimate friend)!
29. ‘He indeed led me astray from the Reminder (this Qur’aan) after it had come to me. And Shaytaan (Satan) is to man ever a deserter in the hour of need’”
In order to cleanse yourself of sin and protect your religious commitment, faith and chastity, strive to do the following:
Pray regularly on time with proper focus and humility before Allaah:
It was narrated from Abu Hurayrah that he heard the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say: “What do you think, if there was a river by the door of one of you and he bathed in it five times a day, would any speck of dirt be left on him?” They said: Not a speck of dirt would be left on him. He said: “That is the likeness of the five prayers, by means of which Allaah erases sins.”
Narrated by al-Bukhaari (505) and Muslim (667).
Keeping company with righteous women who adhere to obedience to Allaah.
It was narrated that Abu Moosa al-Ash’ari (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The likeness of a good companion and a bad companion is that of one who carries musk and one who works the bellows. With the carrier of musk, either he will give you some or you will buy some from him, or you will notice a good smell from him; as for the one who works the bellows, either he will burn your clothes or you will notice a bad smell from him.”
Narrated by al-Bukhaari (1995) and Muslim (2628).
Imam al-Nawawi (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: It points to the virtue of sitting with righteous, good and honourable people, people of good attitude, awareness, knowledge and manners, and indicates that it is not allowed to sit with evil people and followers of innovation, those who backbite about people or who are foul-mouthed and have nothing better to do, and other blameworthy things. End quote.
Sharh Muslim, 16/178
Not listening to songs, music and haraam entertainment.
Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“And of mankind is he who purchases idle talks (i.e. music, singing) to mislead (men) from the path of Allaah without knowledge, and takes it (the path of Allaah, or the Verses of the Qur’aan) by way of mockery. For such there will be a humiliating torment (in the Hell‑fire).
7. And when Our Verses (of the Qur’aan) are recited to such a one, he turns away in pride, as if he heard them not — as if there were deafness in his ear. So announce to him a painful torment”
Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:
Singers and those who listen to them have a share of blame commensurate with the degree to which they are distracted by songs from the Qur’aan. … This is made clear by the fact that you will not find anyone who has an interest in songs and listening to music but he will be somewhat misguided from the path of guidance in terms of knowledge or action, and he is less eager to listen to Qur’aan rather than songs, such that if he has the opportunity to listen either to songs or to the Qur’aan, he will turn away from the latter to the former, and listening to Qur’aan will be burdensome for him, and he may go so far as to tell the reciter to be quiet and tell the singer to carry on, and never have his fill of listening to songs.
Ighaathat al-Lahfaan (1/240, 241).
Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzaan (may Allaah preserve him) said:
The Muslim must repent from sin and hasten to do so, in obedience to the command of Allaah, so as to save himself from the punishment and wrath of Allaah. It is not permissible for him to continue in sin or to delay repentance in order to obey his nafs (self) or the shaytaan, or to wait until people criticize him. Rather he must fear Allaah and not fear people. Even if they are committing sin it is not permissible for him to follow their example, and he must also oblige his family to repent, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“O you who believe! Ward off yourselves and your families against a Fire (Hell) whose fuel is men and stones”
He should not be kind to them with regard to matters that anger Allaah.
Al-Muntaqa min Fataawa al-Fawzaan (2/p. 293).
And Allaah knows best.