Muslimah Working as a Marriage Counselor

By Shafiq Jakura / M.D Mangera
Posted: 26 Jamad ul awwal 1434, 06 April 2013

Q.)As a Muslimah, would it be halal for me to work as a marriage counselor? I feel like we need more Muslim counselors. Muslim should be helping out other Muslims. We canít always go to non-Muslims for certain things. I am studying Psychology so I will be going in to family and marriage counseling. My concern is that sometimes I will have to talk to couples. Is there any option for me in this field? It is really my passion to help people.

A.) Working as a marriage counselor in order to assist Muslims is a noble task, which will Insha Allah prove fulfilling as well as rewarding provided it is done with sincerity, within the framework of the Shariah and for the pleasure of Allah SWT. We advise that when embarking upon the same one should seek advice from Ulama pertaining to one’s methodology and the advice one imparts as there may be certain specific guidelines of Shariah that one should not overlook.
At the same time, involvement in domestic matters and disputes is generally the responsibility of pious family elders and Ulama. Women, due to their soft nature could be swayed by emotion and thereby not be as effective in such circumstances. However, for woman to offer general encouragement and motivation is an act of goodness and reward.

Nevertheless, it is our observation that due to escalation in marital problems in our community the need for pious, competent and experienced women counsellors does arise in the initial stages of trauma and to settle emotions etc. Women tend to relate better to females in these initial stages. Ulama are then required to assist the matter further.

Hence, you should work within your home and restrict yourselves to counselling women only. Try your best to avoid consulting with the husband and if there is a genuine need to do so and there is no Alim or pious experienced male to refer them to then one may do so in the presence of some mahram or at least in the presence of the wife whilst observing the strict rules of purdah e.g. speaking from behind a screen and not speaking in alluring tones etc.

One should also be aware that there is a big difference between counselling in Islam and in other conventional forms of counselling. In Islam, obedience to Allah and following the sunnah form the cornerstone of our advices and counselling.

And Allah Ta'ala Knows Best