Sunday, June 13, 2010

Ask M2M: Do I have to cover in front of him?

This weeks question Ask M2M is from Tahirah.

Q: Alhamdulilah I recently got married and I spend a lot of time around my in laws. My brother in law and his wife come over often and I wanted to know if I have to wear hijab around him since we are family now?

Shukran for asking this question Tahirah. We do have a tendency to get comfortable with family members and think that it is okay to uncover in front of them as long as they are family. You don't have to cover in front of any man who is your mahram. Mahram is one with whom marriage is permanently unlawful.

This (permanent prohibition of marriage) is established in three ways: By kinship, foster relationship and relationship through marriage. Your brother in law is lawful for you in marriage and does not become your mahram through marriage.

Forbidden to you (for marriage) are: your mothers, your daughters, your sisters, your father’s sisters, your mother’s sisters, your brother’s daughters, your sister’s daughters, your foster mothers who gave you suck, your foster milk suckling sisters, your wives’ mothers, your stepdaughters under your guardianship, born of your wives to whom you have gone in — but there is no sin on you if you have not gone in them (to marry their daughters), — the wives of your sons who (spring) from your own loins, and two sisters in wedlock at the same time, except for what has already passed; verily, Allaah is Oft‑Forgiving, Most Merciful. [al-Nisa’ 4:23]

To sum it up here is a list of men who would be a mahram for a women:
  • your father in law
  • your sons, grand they go down. ( i.e, great grandson) those by blood or breast feeding
  • your father, grand father, as they go up. (i.e, great grand father..etc) those by blood or breast feeding
  • your brothers, half brothers (related by blood) and your brothers from breast feeding and nephews as they go down
  • your uncles- great uncles (mother's or father's brothers i.e, maternal and paternal) those by blood and those by breast feeding
  • your father in law- your son in law - the son of your husband.
So to answer your question Tahirah, yes, you do have to wear hijab in front of your brother in law. May Allah make it easy for you - ameen.

If you have a question send it to with the subject Ask M2M.

Asalaamu alaikum
Nadira & Najwa

1 comment:

  1. As salaamu alaaykum Rahmatuallah wa Baraktu. I wanted to first commend the M2M for your blog and other media that u are managing to get the truth about this wonderful deen to the people MashaAllah may Allah continue to u guide you with knowledge and wisdom inshaAllah. I basically wanted to add to the question that Sis Tahirah ask about the brother in-law. First I wanted to give the surah and ayat that explains who is allowed to see the Muslimah without hijab and u explained it but didn't not put the surah and ayat for maybe others to refer to inshaAllah.. And tell the believing women to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts, etc.) and not to show off their adornment except only that which is apparent (like palms of hands or one eye or both eyes for necessity to see the way, or outer dress like veil, gloves, head-cover, apron, etc.), and to draw their veils all over Juyubihinna (i.e. their bodies, faces, necks and bosoms, etc.) and not to reveal their adornment except to their husbands, their fathers, their husband's fathers, their sons, their husband's sons, their brothers or their brother's sons, or their sister's sons, or their (Muslim) women (i.e. their sisters in Islam), or the (female) slaves whom their right hands possess, or old male servants who lack vigour, or small children who have no sense of the shame of sex. And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment. And all of you beg Allah to forgive you all, O believers, that you may be successful. ~An- Nur:31 And then I wanted to explain the seriousness of the brother in-law (or sister in law for males) as our Beloved Prophet (saas) said narrated by 'Uqba b. Amir: Beware of getting, into the houses and meeting women (in seclusion). A person from the Ansir said: Allah's Messenger, what about husband's brother, whereupon he said: Husband's brother is like death. Muslim Book 026, chp 8 Number 5400. Now I'm not saying u must treat them badly. We must still be respectful and cordial but we have to still uphold the same rules for our non mahram men (strange men) even if u know them. So as far as smiling, beautifying our voices, being extra etc. that is prohibited around them even if he is ur husbands brother. Just as the authentic hadith said they are death.(i.e. Fitnah if done incorrectly). I don't mean to rant or sound harsh. If i made a mistake please feel free to correct me and forgive for any short comings. Any benefit that u get from this is from Allah alone. As salaamu Alaaykum


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