Islam and the Quran

What should young couples do if they are unable to marry?

Question: Is it permissible for a boy to talk to a girl he truly loves and wants to marry? The boy has been told that it’s not allowed before marriage. The girl is also sincere and she is so much attached with the boy that she cannot stay apart from him. Even she gets fainted if she cannot talk to him for a while. Both of them want to get married as soon as possible but due to the age factor and the social boundaries, they are unable to express their feelings. Please put a light on this issue for this young couple.

There is no harm for single boys and girls to sit and speak only if they do not stay alone in an indoor area. Nevertheless, they should be extremely careful on controlling their emotions and behaviors. They should not behave each other in an inviting style. Allah the Almighty commands:

 “Tell the believing men to reduce some of their looks and guard their chastity/private parts, because that is purer for them. Verily, Allah is All-Aware of what they are trying to do. Tell the believing women to reduce some of their looks, and cover their private parts. Tell them not to uncover their beautiful parts except what is naturally seen. Tell them to put their headscarves onto their chests and not expose their beautiful parts except to their husbands, their fathers, their husbands’ fathers, their sons, their husbands’ sons, their brothers, their brothers’ sons, their sisters’ sons, their women, those in their possession, those male attendants that have no sexual desire to women, or children who are not yet aware of the private aspects of women. And tell them not to stamp their feet on the ground for their beautiful parts to be noticed. Believers! Return all together towards Allah, so that you may attain what you hope for.” (An-Noor/The Light 24:30-31)

“And do not approach unlawful sexual intercourse. Indeed, it is an outrageous act and an evil way.” (Al-Isra/The Night Journey 17:32)

If the boy and the girl are majors, they should open the subject to their parents and invite them to duty. If they refuse, young couples should learn their reasons, think about it and make a decision. If they still want to marry and the boy has financial power to offer his wife a mahr[1] and a place to live in, they can apply to the official authorities for marrying. They should inform their parents about this.

If they do not have the necessary opportunities, they should be patient. It is advisable for them to fast (sawm) during this period. Because fasting, increases self reliance and self control. It’s also like a shield for sins.

One thing that should be never forgotten is that all of these are tests from Allah. Surely these will pass and others will come. The important thing is to stay Muslim, not to forget our responsibility and the duties towards Allah, and protect ourselves from falling into sins.

[1] Mahr, is the possession a man should pay to his wife in order to marry. It can be paid right before the marriage or counted as debt. Mahr is a personal right of the marrying woman, and should be determined by her only.

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