Very Stressed as Her Parents Disapprove of Her Diet and Subject of Study
Fatwa No: 427807


Assalamualaykum, I have a very serious issue I don’t know what to do about this.My parents are not happy with me Firstly I would like to highlight the problems with me I’m 19 year old and I weigh 120 kg I’m very overweight as a result, I reduce my food intake and exercise.Someone told me that I should eat less and move more, and also stop eating food after Maghreb time I’m doing that but my parents are not happy, when I tell them that this is what I have been recommended they don’t listen and they still force me to eat food.Am I a sinner by disobeying them because this a health issue.Secondly my parents want me to study a degree that I don’t like even though it’s high pay it is my understanding that it’s not in my best interest as this is very hard.When I was in school I suffered from learning disabilities and as a result I never passed maths and other subjects despite having tutors coming and helping me. My parents know this already but they still want me to pursue education despite knowing that I’m very weak at education, theyI don’t see where I’m going wrong but I see a that this is resulting in a lot of disobedience to them because they don’t agree with me, along with the fact that I don’t have a good health either. And I feel now like I want to commit suicide most of the time I cannot learn anything I struggle with maths and not able to do anything I’m looking for an urgent response from you as well as how to tackle this issue


All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

We ask Allah to bless you with kindness and dutifulness to your parents and enable you to do whatever pleases them, and make them pleased with you; in that, there is success in this worldly life and the Hereafter.

Abdullah ibn ‘Amr  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him narrated that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “The pleasure of Allah is in pleasing one's parents, and the wrath of Allah is in angering them.” [At-Tirmithi]

In general, whenever a child can achieve what his parents command him to do – which does not constitute a sin to Allah – then he should do it as a way of dutifulness to them and earning their pleasure.

With regard to your question about weight reduction and studying the specialization that you mentioned, then it is appropriate to mention a rule decided by the scholars in dealing with the parents, that will comfort you in this regard, which is that obedience to the parents is obligatory in matters that are of benefit (interest) to them while this does not constitute any harm to the child. Therefore, if a weight-loss diet does not cause any preponderant harm, then you are not obliged to obey your parents, especially that weight loss is an obvious benefit, and you should consult some specialists in this regard.

The same thing applies to their obedience regarding the study of the specialization which they want: you are not obliged to obey them; being in disagreement with them in this regard [and choosing another specialty] is not considered disobedience to them, especially that you mentioned that it is probable that you will fail because of the difficulty of mathematics.

For more benefit on the limits of obedience to parents, please refer to Fataawa 271255, 131695, and 123554.

We recommend that you try to convince your parents and mediate some of the righteous people to remind them that the child should not be compelled to study a specialty that he does not like and which he does not want. Rather, forcing a child to do it may spoil his/her talents and destroy his/her abilities.

Ibn Al-Qayyim  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said:

What should be relied upon about the condition of the child and the works that he is ready and prepared to do, then one should know that he is created for it [to do them], so the parent should not force him to do other things that are Islamically allowable, because if he is compelled to do other than what he is prepared for, then he will not be successful and he misses what he is naturally disposed of doing (created for)...” [End of quote]

If it happened that you ever did something that is disobedience to your parents, then repentance wipes out that sin.

For more benefit on the conditions of sincere repentance, please refer to Fatwa 86527.

With regard to committing suicide, then be very careful not to give in to such thinking, let alone about taking the initiative to really doing it. Committing suicide means the loss of this worldly life and the Hereafter.

Abu Hurayrah  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him narrated that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “Whoever purposely throws himself from a mountain and kills himself, will be in Hellfire falling down into it and abiding therein perpetually forever; and whoever drinks poison and kills himself with it, he will be carrying his poison in his hand and drinking it in Hellfire wherein he will abide eternally forever; and whoever kills himself with an iron weapon, will be carrying that weapon in his hand and stabbing his abdomen with it in Hellfire wherein he will abide eternally forever.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

For more benefit on suicide, please refer to Fataawa 8676, 22853, 377509, 305578, and 34194.

Allah knows best.

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