She Is Suffering From A Mental Illness – How Should She Pray And Fast?
The Awqaf -
My daughter is suffering from a mental illness
(depression) and last Ramadaan she did not fast
because she had suffered a relapse and was not fully
aware of what was going on around here. I have been
suffering with her for many months. What should I do?
My second question is: when this girl goes to sleep, I
cannot wake her up for any prayer until she wakes up
by herself because of the difficulties that I have
with her. Is there any sin on the mother?
This girl is 23 years old and has been ill for 4
years. She suffers a relapse twice a year. Please pray
for her to be healed.
Praise be to Allaah.
We ask Allaah, may He be exalted, to heal your
daughter and set her affairs straight.
If this illness is so severe that she loses
consciousness during the day in Ramadaan, then she
does not have to make up the days that she has missed,
because she is not obliged to fast in that case.
But if the illness is only depression, and she remains
conscious, then there are two scenarios:
(i) Her sickness is one from which there is hope of
recovery according to the doctors, in which case she
has to make up the days that she missed when the
(ii) Her sickness is one from which there is no hope
of recovery, in which case she is not obliged to fast,
rather she should feed one poor person for each day.
Shaykh Ibn Baaz (may Allaah have mercy on him) was
asked: There was a sick person who was not sick for
part of Ramadaan, then he lost consciousness and he is
still unconscious. Should his sons make up the fasts
on his behalf?
He does not have to make up the fasts if he has lost
his mind or has fallen unconscious. When he regains
consciousness he does not have to make up those days.
His case is like that of an insane or feeble-minded
person, who does not have to make up missed fasts. But
if his unconsciousness lasted only briefly, for one to
two days, or three at the most, then there is nothing
wrong with making up the missed fasts in order to be
on the safe side. But if it lasted for longer, then he
is like a feeble-minded person, and he does not have
to make them up. If Allaah restores his sanity then he
may resume his duties. End quote from Majmoo' Fataawa
al-Shaykh Ibn Baaz (15/209).
If your daughter does not wake up to perform the
prayers on time, and you cannot wake her up, there is
no sin on you in sha Allaah. When she wakes up she has
to make up the prayers that she has missed, because
the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon
him) said: "Whoever forgets a prayer or sleeps and
misses it, the expiation is to offer it when he
remembers it." Narrated by Muslim, 684.
But if it is too difficult for her to offer every
prayer on time, then she may join Zuhr and ‘Asr, and
Maghrib and ‘Isha', at the time of the earlier or
later prayer, depending on whatever is easier for her.
Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allaah have mercy on
Shortening the prayers may be done only when
travelling, and it is not permissible when not
travelling. But joining prayers may be done in cases
of need and excuses. If a person needs to, he may join
prayers when travelling, whether the journey is long
or short, and prayers may be joined in the case of
rain and the like, and in the case of sickness, and
for other reasons. The point is that the ummah be
spared hardship. End quote from Majmoo' al-Fataawa,
And Allaah knows best.