Is living separate allowed?
Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,
As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)
One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:
Dear Brother Mr. Burhan,
Assalamu Alaikum (Warah...)
May Almighty Allah reward you for your noble work for our religion.
I would like to ask you that there is any limitation in period for a man
(Husband) to stay away (in abroad) from his wife. In our cases, we are
working in abroad and getting chance to meet our family yearly once or
once in two year. Is it acceptable as per our religion? And moreover, some
of our people, even they have the chance to live together with their family,
are also living alone for the purpose of saving their earnings. Is it also
acceptable? In some cases, we are not able to keep our parents with us due
to the law of the migrate country. In these cases, we are keeping our
parents away (in homeland) while we are keeping our wife and children
with us. Is it also acceptable?
Please kindly provide the detailed answer based on our religion.
May Almighty Allah bestow His blessings upon us.
(There may be some grammatical and spelling errors in the above statement. The forum does not change anything from questions, comments and statements received from our readers for circulation in confidentiality.)
Is living separate allowed?
In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol, no person, no grave, no prophet, no imam, no dai, nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad(saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.
Q-1: I would like to ask you that there is any limitation in period for a man (Husband) to stay away (in abroad) from his wife.
If due to circumstances and conditions, a husband and wife have to live separate even for a lifetime, they will remain husband and wife until they divorce or one of them dies. There is no time limit prescribed in Shariah for separation between husband and wife. If the wife understands the conditions of why her husband has to live abroad for such long periods of time, and bears this separation with patience, Allah Subhanah will bestow a huge reward upon her. If the wife does not agree to living separate for such long periods of time from her husband, she is well within her rights to initiate a divorce, and there will be no sin upon her.
Q-2: And moreover, some of our people, even they have the chance to live together with their family, are also living alone for the purpose of saving their earnings. Is it also acceptable?
If the husband has the chance of staying with his family, he should stay with them and not put himself as well as his family in trial and temptation. Living away from the family is as difficult for the man as it is for the woman, and seldom would man live in this condition if he could avoid it. But if the condition is such, and the person thinks that he has to bear this sacrifice of separation for the benefit of the family, there is no harm.
One of the prime responsibilities of the man is to provide for the upkeep of his family. More often than not, the man bears this sacrifice of separation upon himself, because he thinks that by doing so he will be able to give a better quality of life for his family. If the wife does not agree to this separation, she should talk to her husband and convince him that she would rather live together with less, than live apart with more.
Q-3: In some cases, we are not able to keep our parents with us due to the law of the migrate country. In these cases, we are keeping our parents away (in homeland) while we are keeping our wife and children with us. Is it also acceptable?
If the parents are strong physically and can take care of themselves, or if there is someone by their side to take care of them, and the parents agree to their children living abroad; there is no harm.
But if the parents are old and weak, and there is absolutely no one who can take of them, and the parents desire that their child should take care of them; then it is obligatory upon the child to leave everything and serve his parents. If the parents are old and weak, and the child just leaves them alone and goes abroad for long periods of time against his parents desire; he will be committing a major sin in Islam.
Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allahs Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.
Your Brother in Islam,