We have all heard of the expression, “What goes around comes around.” This stays true to Islamic culture and weddings. There is too much focus that goes into the actual day, the wedding day, and not enough on the binding marriage contract which will last you a lifetime. Many of us follow the footsteps of those before us, to find ourselves in unpredictable situations in our marriages.
Muslim women, even in today’s age, tend not to read the marriage contract over or are unknowledgeable of their rights. Often times, only the husband and his family read and demand what is obligated of them for their wife in marriage and upon divorce or separation. The woman has very little say.
There is a reason why Allah made those rules to protect us woman, and we have the right to know them and act upon them accordingly. tweet
To make matters worse, there is a taboo in our religion that makes a woman feel as though they are not allowed to, or are looked down upon when asking for their basic rights according to Islam. There is a reason why Allah made those rules to protect us woman, and we have the right to know them and act upon them accordingly.
But when it is our time to get married, how do we, as women, know we are not being taken advantage of? We must educate ourselves on our Deen and Duniya. Many times, we follow tradition and take the words of the Imam, our spouse-to-be’s parents or our own, but we do not think for ourselves. This puts us in a vulnerable position, but when we advocate for ourselves, this will serve as our biggest blessing in the future of one’s marriage.
So how do you decide what you want? This really boils down to our school of thought, culture, and desires. Take time to understand what that looks like for you, your future husband, and kids.
According to a hadith narrated from the Messenger (Peace Be Upon Him), “The Muslims are bound by their conditions, except a condition that forbids what is permissible or permits what is forbidden.” Narrated by al-Tirmidhi (1352). It continues, “Whoever stipulates a condition that is not in the book of Allah is not valid, even if he stipulates a hundred times.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari (2155) and Muslim (1504).
What this basically means is that the ruling on conditions that are stipulated in contracts, if they are fair, must be fulfilled.
When it comes to dowry it is the wife’s exclusive right. It is strictly her possession, and not for her guardians or relatives.
There needs to be more of a representation of Muslim sisters who are knowledgable or experienced in this matter to provide input to the younger sisters who are following their footsteps. tweet
There is a disagreement amongst Muslims when it comes to legal disadvantages Muslim women face during marriage and divorce. This is when marital contracts become crucial guides and obligations regarding traditional rules, such as dower obligations, divorce, and even sexual access to the wife.
There are many great sources out there, but that can sometimes serve as a barrier. Many sources I find are Muslim scholars, Imams, professionals who are male. There needs to be more of a representation of Muslim sisters who are knowledgable or experienced in this matter to provide input to the younger sisters who are following their footsteps.
Islam has given us a great tool to analyze our marriages, and hence futures. There is a gateway to resolve issues that arise amongst partners before marriage. All it takes is time, commitment, and ownership of responsibilities one signs up for—literally.