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Appropriate Age for Marriage


This section:
  • Appropriate age for marriage
  • A young woman waiting to finish her studies before marriage
  • More on not delaying marriage (Marriage comes first)

 

The appropriate age for marriage

Question: What is the appropriate age for men and women to marry? Some of the young ladies of today do not accept to be married to men older than them and also some of the men do not get married from anyone older than them either. We hope for a response, may Allaah reward you.

Response: I advise the young ladies not to refuse a man because of his older age. Even if he be ten, twenty or thirty years older, this is not a valid excuse.

The Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) married ‘Aa.ishah when he was fifty-three years old and she was nine years old. Older age is not harmful. There is no problem if the woman is older than the man and there is no problem if the man is older than the woman.

The Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) married Khadijah when she was forty years old and he was twenty-five years old, before he received his first revelation. That is, she was fifteen years older than him (may Allaah be pleased with her). And ‘Aa.ishah was married when she was a young lady of six or seven years and the Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) consummated the marriage when she was nine years old and he was fifty-three years old.

Many of those who talk on the radio or television and speak against having disparaging ages between husband and wife are wrong. It is not permissible for them to say such things. Instead, what must be done, is the woman must look at the prospective husband and, if he be pious and appropriate, she must agree to him even if he is older than her. Similarly, the man must try to marry a woman who is pious and virtuous, even if she is older than him, especially if she is still less than mid life. In any case, age should not be taken as an excuse. It should also not be considered a shortcoming, as long as the man is pious or the woman is pious.

May Allaah make the affairs good for everyone.
Shaykh Ibn Baaz
  • Fataawa al-Mar.ah
http://www.fatwa-online.com/


Ruling concerning a young lady who refuses marriage in order to finish her studies

Question: A common practice today is for a young lady or her father to refuse one who proposes in order for the woman to finish her high school, college or study of certain years. What is the ruling concerning that? What is your advice to those who do such, given that many times the woman reaches the age of thirty or more without getting married?
Response: This practice goes against what the Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) commanded. The Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) said:
((If one whose religion and character pleases you comes to you [for proposal], then marry him)).
The Messenger of Allaah (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) also said:
((O youth, whoever of you has the means to get married should get married for it lowers the gaze and protects the chastity)).
By preventing marriage, one loses out on the benefits of marriage. I advise my brother Muslims who are the guardians of women and my sister Muslims not to keep from marriage due to finishing school or teaching. In fact, the woman may put a condition upon her husband that she may remain studying until she finishes her studies or she remain teaching for a year or two, given that she does not become busy with her children. There is no harm in such an act.
However, a matter which needs further consideration is where the woman is continuing her studies in an area that is not truly needed. In my view, when a woman finishes the elementary stages and has the ability to read and write, thereby being able to benefit from her knowledge through reading the Book of Allaah, its tafseer, the hadeeth of the Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) and their explanation, that is all she really needs. Unless, of course, she is continuing her studies in an area that the people need, such as medicine and similar fields. This is also conditional that the study not involve aspects which are forbidden, such as mixing with men and so forth.
Shaykh Ibn 'Uthaymeen
Fataawa al-Mar.ah
http://www.fatwa-online.com/

Marriage comes first

Question: A common custom among the people nowadays is for a woman or her father to refuse a man's proposal so that she may finish high school, college or some specific amount of studying. What is the ruling concerning that? What is your advice for those who fall into that trap? Sometimes, the woman reaches the age of thirty or more and she has yet to get married!
Response: My advice to all young men and young women is to get married quickly if the means to it are made possible for you. This is because the Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) has said:
((O youthful people, if any of you have the means to, he should get married, as it lowers the eyesight and protects the private parts. Those who have not the ability to do so should fast, as it will be a shield for him)). This was recorded by al-Bukhaaree and Muslim.
The Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) also said:
((If one whose religion and character pleases you proposes to you, you should marry him. If you do not do so, them will be tribulations in the land and great evil)). This was recorded by at-Tirmidhee with a hasan chain.
The Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) also said:
((Marry the child-bearing, loving woman for I shall outnumber the peoples by you on the Day of Resurrection)). This was recorded by Ahmad and graded Saheeh by ibn Hibban.
Therefore, there are many benefits to marriage which the Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) alluded to, including lowering the gaze, protecting the private parts, increasing the numbers of the Muslim Nation and being saved from great evil and misfortune.


May Allaah grant to all what is best for their religion and worldly lives. He is All-Hearing, Close.
Shaykh Ibn Baaz
Fataawa al-Mar.ah