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Does The Husband Have The Right To Interfere In His Wife’s Relationships With Her (female) Friends?

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Rufai Oladimeji
Lagos State University
100Level, Nigeria.
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I would like to know whether the
husband has the right, according to
sharee‘ah, to interfere in his wife’s
choice of friends. Is there any
evidence in the Quran or Sunnah?.


Praise be to Allah.
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
Sahabah, 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 Haram,
who were from among the Ansar,
were with me.
Narrated by al-Bukhari, 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
saheeh Sunnah.
It was narrated that ‘Aishah (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
Narrated by al-Bukhari, 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 the meaning):
“Men are the protectors and
maintainers of women, because
Allah has made one of them to excel
the other…”
[an-Nisa 4:34].
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-Bukhari, 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 Jabir said: The
Prophet (blessings and peace of
Allah be upon him) said: “Fear Allah
with regard to women, for you have
taken them as a trust from Allah,
and intimacy with them has become
permissible to you by the word of
Allah. 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 .
And Allah knows best.


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