I am recently engaged and Inshallah will be married soon. I was talking to my fiancé on the telephone and we started discussing the authority of a husband over his wife which includes who can and who cannot enter the home.
I understand the concept and the wisdom behind the authority of the husband. As he is accountable for his household and will have to answer for it, he is given that authority.
But my question is, my fiancé doesn’t approve of many of my friends. He doesn’t approve that they are non-practicing muslims and is worried that it may influence me one day in the future or that it may influence our future children. So he is telling me that if my friends do not change by the time we get married, I will have to seize my relationship with them. This upsets me as all of my friends have been with me since childhood.
I want to know, is he able to give this verdice? He has friends that are very bad influences on him and he has, as a result of his friends, made terrible mistakes which I have forgiven. But when I ask him to at the very least distance himself from them, he gets angry and tells me I have to right to ask or expect this of him.
Can I ask him to stop associating himself with his friends whom have proven themselves to be a bad influence? What rights do I have in this specific regards over my husband in accordance with Islamic writings and/or Hadiths of the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam?
In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.
Firstly, the relationship that you have established with your fiancé by talking to him over the phone is completely Haram. It is not permissible for you to talk to your fiancé simply because you are engaged to him. Engagement is only a form of promise that the parties will marry in the future. All forms of relationships and affairs before marriage are Haram. You must sever all ties with this man as he is a stranger to you and you are not married to him.
Marriage is not about one day, or one month, or one year. Marriage is a lifetime commitment. Generally, the laws of marriage are overlooked due to love and mutual understanding between the spouses. The spouses do not demand rights from one another as this causes friction in the marriage. If you and your fiancé are already arguing over the rights of one another before even getting married, then how do you expect such a marriage to last for a lifetime with love and peace? Such attitude of demanding rights from one another eventually leads to turbulence in the marriage.
Both the spouses come with a deep background of diverse families and friends. It is imprudent of any spouse to demand from the other to break friendship upon marriage. In the beginning of a marriage, the bond between the spouses has to grow to the extent that it outgrows other bonds, family, friendship etc. This takes time. When the bond of marriage exceeds all other bonds, there would be no need for the husband or wife to restrict other bonds. Shariah encourages us to maintain friendship, not to break friendship. If you are a practicing Muslim and break friendship with your friends, that attitude will have a negative impact on your friends. They will start thinking negative of Deen. Your attitude will deter them from becoming practical Muslims as you will be setting a bad example to them.
In your case, you should differentiate between maintaining friendship and your friends coming home. Marriage comes with obligations. You may limit your friendship to events outside your home. If your husband disapproves of your friends coming home if there is a reason to believe their friendship is impacting negatively on your Deen and character, then he is justified in doing so. The same principle will apply if a wife wants to restrict her husband from his friends.
And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best
Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.
 وله ان يمنع اهلها من القرار والمقام عندها في بيته، سواء كان ملكا له او اجارة او عارية (الاحكام الشرعية في الاحوال الشخصية، ج1ص456، دار السلام)