I have a catholic friend who`s married to a muslim man.For years, she was the one supporting the family but fortunately, her husband finally found a job in the middle east
Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,
As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)
One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:
I have a catholic friend who`s married to a muslim man.For years, she was the one supporting the family but fortunately, her husband finally found a job in the middle east. Because of their living arrangement, away from each other the man wants to marry again in which my friend refused to agree. Let me say that it was the man who decided to work abroad to support his family...yet now he`s breaking his promise by marrying another woman.
My friend wants to know if she can get full custody of the children (ages 2-8), she has no plans of remarrying...she`s actually studying Islam and is willing to convert as she is now studying the Qur-an.
Can you give advices about her situation?Can she stop her husband from acquiring a new wife (he wants to have 4 wives, saying it is Allah`s wish)
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Custody of children
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Your Statement: Because of their living arrangement, away from each other the man wants to marry again in which my friend refused to agree.
Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 4 Surah Nisaa verse 3:
3 If ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly with the orphans marry women of your choice two or three or four; but if ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly (with them) then only one or (a captive) that your right hands possess. That will be more suitable to prevent you from doing injustice.
Allah Subhanah has absolutely forbidden the believing men (and women) to form or develop any sort of illicit relationship with a non-mehram member of the opposite sex out of marriage. Thus recognizing the polygamous nature of man, for those men who wish to marry and keep more than one wife at any one time, Allah Subhanah has given permission and an option that a believing man, instead of taking the unlawful route, may lawfully honor, marry and keep a maximum of four wives at any one time, if he wishes to do so.
Your Statement: Let me say that it was the man who decided to work abroad to support his family...yet now he`s breaking his promise by marrying another woman
The Lord has Commanded the believers who choose to exercise the option of marrying more than one wife that they should be absolutely equal and just amongst their wives with the distribution of their time and wealth amongst them. If one fears that he might not be able to do justice if he chose to marry more than one wife, then he should marry only one.
Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 4 Surah Nisaa verse 129:
129 Ye are never able to be (totally and absolutely) fair and just as between women even if it is your ardent desire: but turn not away (from a woman) altogether so as to leave her (as it were) hanging (in the air)!. If ye come to a friendly understanding and practice self-restraint Allah is Oft-Forgiving Most Merciful.
Sunan of Abu-Dawood Hadith 2128 Narrated by Abu Hurayrah
The Prophet (saws) said: ‘When a man has two wives and he is inclined to one of them, he will come on the Day of resurrection with a side hanging down.’
Thus if one desires to marry more than one wife and is confident that he will be able to deal justly amongst his wives, he has the right to exercise his lawful option of marrying more than one wife and keep upto a maximum of four wives (who themselves have of their own will have agreed and consented to be his 2nd, 3rd, or 4th wife) of his choice at any one time, if he wishes to do so.
Beloved Brother, if the man has decided to exercise his option of marrying another woman and intends to leave his first wife to herself, or intends to not equally support and provide for both his families, then indeed not only would he be guilty of breaking his promise to his first wife, he will be held severely accountable for this evil injustice in the Presence of the Lord Most Majestic on a Tumultuous and Inevitable Day of Judgment.
But if the man exercises his option to take on a second wife, and intends to provide and support both his families with justice, then there is no harm.
Your Question: My friend wants to know if she can get full custody of the children (ages 2-8), she has no plans of remarrying...she`s actually studying Islam and is willing to convert as she is now studying the Qur-an.
If your friend chooses to remain on her Catholic belief and (Allah forbid) a divorce were to take place between her husband and her; Shariah Law dictates that the custody of the children resulting from that marriage will be given to the muslim husband.
But if your friend chooses to accept and adopt Islam as
her way of life before her divorce were to take place, then Shariah Law would
then give the custody of the children who are below the age of puberty and
understanding to the mother, with the father having fair visitation
rights. When the children have passed
the age of puberty and understanding and the father wishes to gain custody of
the children, he has to take his custody case to a
Your Question: Can you give advices about her situation? Can she stop her husband from acquiring a new wife (he wants to have 4 wives, saying it is Allah`s wish).
Firstly brother, it is not entirely accurate of the man to say that he wishes to have four wives because it is Allah’s Wish! The truth is that the Lord Most High, recognizing the polygamous nature of men, has given the man an option whether he is satisfied with one wife, or if he wills and chooses, he may exercise his option to take on more than one wife upto a maximum of four at any time; provided he is absolutely confident that he will treat and provide all his wives with justice and equality.
Secondly, once a man has decided to take on another woman as his wife, there is very little the first wife or anyone else can do to stop the person from fulfilling his desire. If enough social or family pressure is put upon the man, and he does not fear Allah and the Last Day, chances are the person who desires another woman will take the unrighteous and immoral path of keeping a mistress….and there is nothing anyone can do about that! Thus Islam has recognized the polygamous nature of men, and given the believing men the option that in case one is not satisfied with only wife, he may, if he so chooses, exercise his option of lawfully taking more than one wife; provided he treats and provides all his wives with equality and justice.
In such a situation the first wife has two legal and lawful options:
- Accept the condition that her husband wishes to take on a second wife and thus save the marriage and continue to keep custody of the children.
- If she cannot bring herself to accept the situation which is thrust upon her by her husband taking on a second wife, she is well within her rights in Islam to initiate divorce proceedings against her husband.
Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allah’s Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me alone. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.
Your brother and well wisher in Islam,