Answered by Ustadha Zaynab Ansari

Question: I have been Muslim all my life but I have children out of wedlock. My oldest child’s father has become Muslim and we want to be married but he wants a job first. I have no problem with that but we are sinning by having relations. I don’t want to and often feel terrible after the act. I keep telling him it is best for us to wed in order to stop sinning but he insists on finding a job first, but he wants to continue the relationship in the mean time.  What can I do to convince him that marriage is the most important thing to do at this point and a job will come? He is worried about finances but I have a job. Two is better than one but I feel as though we should just get married and everything else will fall into place. Help!

Answer: In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

Dear Sister,

Thank you for your question. I pray this message finds you well.

You need to work on your self-esteem. Allah has honored women by insisting that men not approach them unless it is within the marital relationship. You are demeaning yourself every time you agree to engage in fornication with this man. If he calls himself a Muslim, he ought to know better.

If we want men to respect us, we have to respect ourselves. He does not respect you. Why pay for what you can get for free? He does not value you. Do not marry this man. Is this who you want to raise your children and lead your household? Someone who cannot respect the basic boundaries of Allah? If you do get married, not only would you be marrying someone with whom you committed a major sin, but you’d also be financially supporting him while he continues to enjoy your companionship. What are you getting from this? There’s no way you can respect a man like this. You owe it to yourself to marry someone who fears Allah and has his business together.

There is also the issue of your children who you’ve indicated have different fathers. You must think about their future. Not only are they handicapped by being born out of wedlock (sadly, people who find out you weren’t married to their father will tease them even though they are not to blame), you don’t have a good male role model for them. If you are serious about your children being raised correctly and not repeating your mistakes, you need to choose very carefully who you marry and bring into your house.

May Allah Ta’ala guide you to what is correct,

Zaynab Ansari

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