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Restoring a healthy relationship with one's parent

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  • Restoring a healthy relationship with one's parent

    Salaam Alaikum.

    I am a young student of 23 years old, about to finish my master's degree. I have already found a job, which I will start in November, insha'Allah.

    My parents got divorced when I was 8-9 years old. However, it didn't change the fact that both parents treated me with love and respect (although, since I've lived at my mother's, I've always been closer to her).

    I was never told about why my parents had a divorce (I actually thought it was my fault when I was younger), and my mom wanted to wait until I was 18 before telling me what happened. She told me when I was 20. I won't go into details as to what happened, but there were a couple of things that shocked me.

    Of course, as with all conflicts, it's always important to hear both sides of the story, so I asked my dad to tell me his version of the story. He actually confirmed doing some of the things that were shocking. Contrary to what I expected, he didn't tell me that in an apologetic way or with any form of regret. He was actually proud of some of the things he had done, which really surprised me because I didn't think of him that way. The conversation got heated and I asked him: "What kind of example do you believe you're giving me?", to which he replied "I have nothing to show to you. I didn't want kids. Besides, you were nothing but a disappointment to me". I would like to point out again that the conversation got heated and that he most probably said that out of anger. Regardless, when I heard this I walked out.

    For about a year or so, I didn't contact my dad, nor did he (despite my mom repeatedly advising me to do so). Eventually, I sent him a message, letting him know that I was sorry (since he wasn't returning my calls). I didn't get any reply. I tried to go through my father's sister, but she doesn't speak to me either.

    I tried really hard to get him to talk to me for us to move on from this, but I never was able to reach him. Besides, my family is currently looking for potential girls for me to marry. We've met about 10 other families, but none of them wanted to pursue the discussion. Through various contacts, we were able to know that my situation with my dad was a deal-breaker for these families (7 out of all 10 said this). Obviously, when we met, I didn't tell them in detail about what happened between me and my dad, however, I do tell them that my parents are divorced and that I don't talk a lot with my dad. I don't want to lie to these families or suggest something that turns out to be incorrect.

    Maybe I'm wrong, but I consider this to be a sign from Allah telling me that I need to rectify things with my dad before I open the next chapter of my life. However, at this stage, I don't know what to do.
    Last edited by Skyris; 01-08-20, 01:24 AM.

  • #2
    Ok. Your "father" needs to behave like one, unless you're the kind of child who's been crappy with his father then I dont blame him not to talk to you, but if this is just his character then hes a toxic man.

    Your "father" doesnt know how to be a husband neither does he know how to behave like a dad. So, are you going to follow your "fathers" footsteps? Or are you going to work on yourself and earn money get your own place and keep your future wife separate from your daddy issues?

    You either get stuck in this toxic mess or you make your own path thays healthy for you and your future wife, otherwise you'll end up like your dad.


    • #3
      Relationships need effort on both parts.
      If he isnt making the effort with you, theres nothing you can do to be honest

      Focus on your career because at your age you can really take it in a good direction and off course focus on your deen. Maybe other relations like marriage and your wife will have to be kept separate to your dad.


      • #4
        Walaykum salam,

        I agree with the Prince. If your father is unwilling to reconcile then there isn't anything you can do about that. If you can contact him by text or sending a message through a mutual contact, then tell him your door is open for him if he ever changes his mind and decides to patch up with you, but beyond that, don't feel as though you owe him anything and don't ever apologise to him again over how you left things. When he told you that he didn't want kids and you were a disappointment, he wronged you and committed an injustice against you- why did YOU apologise for that? There's no excuse for talking about your own flesh and blood like that.

        There's a well known saying "When someone shows you who they really are- believe them". What do you hope to gain from reconciling with someone like that? If you say it's for Islamic reasons that you don't want to break ties completely then that's fine- like I said before, send a message that your door is open if he's willing to reconcile and leave it at that... that way you wont be sinful for the absence of contact because you haven't cut off from him from your side. Aside from that, I can't help but think reconciling with him will just open you up for getting more abuse, even if it's just verbal abuse. You don't want that in your life.

        As for the rishtas that have turned you down, is your dad the real reason? Have you been upfront about the fact that your parents are divorced and you're semi estranged from your dad because he mistreated your family? I think people seeing rishtas tend to put on a front and make it look like they come from a happy family and don't like to admit there were problems or break ups in the parents marriage, so sometimes (especially mums of potential brides and grooms) fudge the issue and don't admit that there was a divorce, or that there was a damn good reason for a divorce. So the rishta family think if the dad wasn't bad and they were a happy good family, then they look like people who take divorce lightly so maybe we shouldn't agree to marrying into this sort of family. In such cases, whether you marry them or not actually has little to do with whether you have a relationship with your dad or not. I could be wrong here I'm just speculating because I've seen this happen in Asian Muslim families before.

        I wouldn't take it too personally if you've been turned down. People are very picky about rishtas in general anyway, people are frightened off easily over little things and jump to conclusions over little things. Don't take it too personally, even if you came from a stable happy two parent household, you'd still find it hard to get married because everyone finds it hard and gets rejected over trivial things like height, skin colour, weight, education level, profession, you name it.
        The Lyme Disease pandemic:


        • #5
          I think you also need to make it clear that its your Dad that isn't talking to you, you try to make contact but he doesn't respond.
          You need to find a family who accepts your circumstances and judges you for you and not just your family.

          I have a feeling i'll face a similar issue..


          • #6
            Wa 'alaikum as-salam wa rahmatullah wa barakatuh,

            Firstly, if you have reached out to your father and he, for some reason, fails to repond; you have done all that is required of you in regards to maintining ties of kinship.

            'Abdullah ibn 'Amr reported that the Prophet, salla Allahu 'alayhi wa sallam, said, "The one who maintains ties of kinship is not the one who reciprocates. The one who maintains ties of kinship is the one who, when his relatives cut him off, maintains ties of kinship." (Al-Adab Al-Mufrad 68)
            Maintaining ties of kinship is a rewardable act, so it would not somehow lead to a bad outcome on your part. On the contrary, this would lead you to good things.

            Secondly, our spouses are part of the Qadr that Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala Himself has laid out for us. We cannot choose when to be born, nor when to die. Likewise, we cannot choose when to get married. If all humans in the world would have come together to pair you up with one of these 10 women, and if your father and mother were in the picture and supportive, that wouldn't have mattered in the least if Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala had not written that a nikah should take place between any of you. So, if the nikah didn't happen, that simply means that Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala had not planned it. It means nothing else.

            The only thing that you need to do is to bear this trial with patience and in hope of a reward from Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala, I also pray that He rewards you and gives you the spouse that you're looking for.

            Ma' salam