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No Prescribed Period For Consummating Marriage: Appearing Before One's Fiancé Before The Wedding (Nikaah)

Islamic Rulings - Living Shariah Verdicts

Islamic Questions & Answers

How soon do a married couple have to consumate their marriage in Islam?
If one of the partners feels uncomfortable, what is he/she to do, if he/she does not want to consumate right away, but would prefer to wait about 3 months?

al-hamdu lillaah.

If a man executes a valid marriage contract with a woman then it is permissible for the two to do as they please between themselves, even with only the contract. There is no period prescribed by Islamic shari'ah between the contract and consummation of the marriage, so this issue is up to the two partners as to what they decide is most appropriate and in their best interests.

It is incumbent upon both parties to consider, respect, and ensure the other one's personal comfort and ease. Thus, if the husband sees that the wife needs some time to become acclimated and develop their relationship and level of intimacy before consummation, such as 3 months, for example, he should do so, and vice versa. Likewise, it is incumbent upon the wife if she sees that her husband feels an urgent need to guard his chastity by consummating the marriage that she should not prolong the period so that he does not fall into a state of awkward discomfort and difficulty, and vice versa.

Appearing Before One's Fiancé Before The Wedding (Nikaah)

I am engaged to man who i attend to marry in acouple months inshallah. whenever my fiance comes to my house for dinner my parents tell me not to wear my jilbab in front of him, and ot wear normal loose fitting clohtes, because there is nothing wrong with him seeing me without my jilbab because there is intention for marriage. I would like to know, if this is allowed, or am i not suppose to take my jilbab off?

Praise be to Allaah.

So long as the nikaah (marriage contract) has not yet taken place, this man is still a "stranger" to you, and you should observe hijaab with him (i.e., wear proper hijaab and avoid contact) just as you would in the case of any other man. He has no right to look at you beyond the look that is allowed by sharee'ah at the time of making a marriage proposal, beyond which no further look is permitted until the nikaah is completed. What you father has told you about it being OK for you to relax the rules of hijaab in front of your fiancé is not correct, and there should be no obedience to any created being if it involves disobedience to the Creator. The mere intention of marriage does not justify uncovering in front of him. And Allaah knows best.


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