Getting Married (2)

So your child wants to get married? Here are more tips for parents on how to proceed:

1. Rules of meeting a potential mate
Your role as a parent is to set boundaries as to how and when children will meet prospective candidates. Too often, Muslims stray by thinking seeking a partner is an excuse to engage in dating. This is worsened by communication via emails, sms, telephone or chat services. Clearly outline the rules, such as: the meeting must be chaperoned so the two are not alone together.

2. Never be pushy
Parents should never apply pressure to get their kids to marry the ‘right one’, often in complete variance with what the young man or woman is looking for. Islam allows for a girl or boy married without their consent before maturity, to annul the marriage upon maturity, in most cases. Likewise, Islam requires the consent of both boy and girl in contracting a marriage. Would you want your grandchildren to experience the turmoil of a divorce which could have been avoided if both parties had more say in the choice of a partner?
Another form of pressure is put on those who are given a proposal. It is not uncommon to see sisters or their parents pursued by the parents of boys who have proposed. This can even reach the level of harassment.

3. Take your time
Do not rush a child into marriage. More time must be given to checking facts and references. Ideally references should always be checked before meeting in person. This goes for boys and girls.

4. Marriage classes
Boys and girls wishing to get married should attend marriage classes with a good Aalim, preparing for the challenges of marriage. This system is run successfully in Malaysia and Singapore.