Rulings on upholding the ties of kinship for females
Praise be to Allaah.
There follow some details about the issue of women upholding their ties of kinship, and what they should do with husbands who prevent them from doing so.
Upholding the ties of kinship is obligatory even for females, who must uphold them as much as they can. Therefore it is not permissible for a man to prevent his wife or daughter from upholding her ties of kinship, and if he stops her from visiting them, but he lets her convey greetings to them, whether by letter or through a third person, or send them gifts, then she should do that. It is sufficient even if she only sends greetings without a gift, but if she sends her greetings with a gift, that is better. If he stops her from sending a gift but allows her to send greetings, then she should send greetings. If he allows her to send a gift but stops her from sending greetings, then she should send a gift. If he allows her to go and see them, then she should go. If he stops her from doing anything that comes under the heading of upholding ties of kinship, then there is no obedience to any created being if it involves disobedience to the Creator. In this case she should maintain her family ties in the way that is least objectionable to her husband or father, whether it is sending gifts or conveying greetings, and she can conceal that if she is fearful. If her relatives are faced with some hardship, she should help them with what they need, even if he says not to. She should uphold her family ties by offering condolences in the case of bereavement or loss, and condolence means advising patience. She should also congratulate them on joyful occasions, and congratulating them means praying that they will enjoy to the full whatever has brought them joy, and that it will not be spoilt for them. Such joyful events include the return of a traveller, a wedding, etc. She should not adorn herself or display her adornment in front of those to whom she should not show herself, such as cousins (sons of maternal uncles or paternal uncles), and she should convey her greetings to them from behind a barrier and without making her voice soft, but this is only in cases where there is no fear of fitnah, otherwise she may convey greetings through a third party. She does not have to attend funerals.
It is not permissible for the husband to stop his wife from upholding the ties of kinship even if it involves her going out, but she should not go out except with his permission. The same applies to fathers. The wife should treat her husband gently so that she will still be able to fulfil her shar’i duty of upholding the ties of kinship. We ask Allaah to put all our affairs in order.