Praise be to Allaah.
Naturally, a married woman will have friends from before her
marriage, and there is nothing at all in sharee‘ah to keep her away from her
friends, unless her husband does not give her permission for that. Rather,
things remain as they are, so she may keep her friends from before, and they
may visit her in her home and she may honour them with hospitality. This is
how things were among the noble female Sahaabah, foremost among whom are the
Mothers of the Believers, the wives of the Prophet (blessings and peace of
Allah be upon him).
It was narrated that Umm Salamah said: The Prophet (blessings
and peace of Allah be upon him) prayed ‘Asr, then he entered upon me and
some women from Banu Haraam, who were from among the Ansar, were with me.
Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 1233; Muslim, 834.
Here is Umm Salamah (may Allah be pleased with her); the
Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) entered her house and
found her female friends with her. Then she (may Allah be pleased with her)
says that he prayed two rak‘ahs to make up the Sunnah prayer of Zuhr.
There is a great deal of evidence, but what we have quoted
above is sufficient. In fact the basic principle is that the husband should
honour his wife’s friends even after his wife dies! This is mentioned in the
It was narrated that ‘Aa’ishah (may Allah be pleased with
her) said: I never felt jealous of any of the wives of the Prophet
(blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) except Khadeejah, even though I
never met her. But the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him)
used to mention her often, and sometimes he would slaughter a sheep then cut
it up and send it to the friends of Khadeejah. One day I said to him: It is
as if there is no woman in this world except Khadeejah! He said: “She was
such and such, and I have children from her.”
Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 3607; Muslim, 2435.
What we have mentioned above does not contradict the wife’s
duty to obey her husband if he tells her to end her relationship with one of
her friends, or does not allow one of them to visit her, because the husband
is in charge of the wives in the home, and he is a shepherd who is
responsible for his flock. Allah, may He be exalted, says (interpretation of
“Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, because
Allah has made one of them to excel the other…”
And the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him)
said: “The man is the shepherd of his family and he is responsible for his
Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 853; Muslim, 1829
The wife does not have the right to admit anyone into her
husband’s house if the husband does not want that person to enter his house.
And the wife does not have the right to go out of the marital house except
with her husband’s permission. Even if he does not allow her to visit her
family, she has to refrain from doing so. He may be unjust in this decision
of his, in which case he is sinning; or he may be correct, in which case he
will be rewarded. Whatever the case, it is obligatory for the wife to obey
her husband in this regard. The wise woman will not put the friendship of a
woman before her role as a wife who is happy with her husband and children
in the marital home.
It was narrated that Jaabir said: The Prophet (blessings and
peace of Allah be upon him) said: “Fear Allaah with regard to women, for you
have taken them as a trust from Allaah, and intimacy with them has become
permissible to you by the word of Allaah. Your rights over them are that
they should not allow anyone whom you dislike to sit on your furniture. If
they do that, then hit them, but in a manner that does not cause injury or
leave a mark. Their rights over you are that you should provide for them
and clothe them in a reasonable manner.”
Narrated by Muslim, 1218.
The husband’s preventing her from seeing a particular friend
does not necessarily mean that that woman is of bad character or lacking in
religious commitment; rather the pros and cons of any relationship are many
and the wife may not understand these pros and cons in all cases.
But if the husband sees something in the friend’s attitude or
religious commitment (or lack thereof) that makes this necessary, then the
matter is clear and does not need any explanation.
For more information, please see the answers to questions
And Allah knows best.