Our Lord! You truly know all that we may hide in our hearts as well as all that we bring into the open, for nothing whatsoever, be it on earth or in heaven, remains hidden from Allah. {Quran, 14:38}


Mama Guilt

"Allah (SWT) has created human beings and blessed them with the longest childhood among His creations. We have a lot to learn about life, creation, and our Creator and what we learn requires a lot of time to learn, understand, and implement. Teaching and conditioning from childhood is our best bet at retaining all of the vital information provided to us by Allah. So, childhood remains the most critical time by which to set up an Islamic foundation.However, Allah (SWT) also gave us the potential to change ourselves. He has granted opportunities and second chances to those whose parents did not raise them to be good Muslims; through His mercy and forgiveness, He has given us all the chance to start again. Though it is not easy to accomplish, with sincerity, azeema (back bone), and mothabarah (persistence), all children can become good Muslims."~Sahar Kassaimah, IslamOnline

Allah has blessed me and is now trialling me with 3 daughters and 1 son. Praise Allah. Everyday brings new challenges with a household of 4 kids under the age of 7. It does not help either when I lose it and snap for reasons unjustified. I know, I haven't heard of a mother guilt free. But my goal is to limit that guilt as much as I can by rectifying my parenting techniques. I lose it too much, my patience. Yet, I love them and want to see them as real strong Muslims. It would be nice I guess to see them educated as doctors, engineers or holding some high rank positions as adults. But honestly, and Allah knows what is in my heart, I just want these kids to be good Muslims. Not like good Muslims I see or know, but better, much better than that. So then I have to ask myself, if I flip over something ridiculous like the kids laughing too hard while their baby sister is sleeping..then how I enable that goal to become a reality?? There is no other time I feel more guilty than when they are all asleep. I just pray that Allah helps guide me in guiding these kids giving them what they need to make it as those who are guarded and protected on Judgement Day. So here I am posting all this so I can share with all of you a fatwa (religious ruling) on raising kids. This is the hardest job of my life because I have no guarantee of its outcome, I can only pray that they reflect upon the 'Sign's of Allah, are granted with Allah's' 'Mercy', become Strong Believers, and live their lives with 'Sincere Devotion'. (these are the meanings of my children's names). Anyways, below is a reminder for myself more than anyone else. It's taken from

"Indeed, Allah creates children with pure innate nature, and whatever defects that happen later is the result of bad education. The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, is reported to have said: “Every child is born on Fitrah (man’s innate disposition to monotheism), his parents make him Jewish, Christian or a fire worshipper.” (Reported by Al-Bukhari and Muslim) That is why Islam has ordered parents to take care of their children and to bring them up according to the Islamic manners. Focusing more on the very interesting question you have raised, we would like to cite the following: Allah Almighty has entrusted parents with their children. Parents bear the responsibility to raise up their children in the Islamic way. If they do that they will be blessed in this life and in the Hereafter, and if they don't, they will get bad result during their life and in the Hereafter. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) is reported to have said: “All of you are guardians and all of you are responsible for things under your guardianship; the ruler is a guardian (managing his state’s affairs) and he is responsible for things under his care, the man is a guardian over his family and responsible for them, the woman is a guardian of her husband's house and she is responsible for it. All of you are guardians and responsible for things under your control.” (Reported by Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

The Prophet, (peace and blessings be upon him) did not excuse any one from responsibility that Allah has put on every individual to build the Islamic society: the ruler is responsible: the man and woman are responsible.... all within their capabilities, domains, and authorities... and the loss of Islam from our Muslim Ummah these days is nothing but a result of the neglect of responsibility. Men and women, fathers and mothers share the responsibility to raise up, educate, and build the new generation in the correct method and the right way. Man has in him the good and bad tendencies, so parents must encourage and grow the good tendencies in the child so he can become a useful person that helps himself and his people. Referring to this, Allah Almighty says: "Oh' you who believe, protect yourselves and your families from a fire whose fuel is men and stones." (At-Tahreem: 6) The protection of yourself and your family from Hell-Fire won't be with anything but good education, the practice of good morals, and the guidance to nobility. Islam does not distinguish between male and female with regard to the education requirements.

The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) is reported to have said: “Whoever has a daughter, tutors her on good morals, educates her well and feeds her properly; she will be a protection for him from Hell-Fire.” What do we mean by good education? The good education means the physical, mental and moral preparation of the child so he can become a good individual in the good society.
Methods for Moral Upbringing:
1- Showing the values of good deeds and their
effects on the individuals and society; also showing the effects of bad deeds, all within the child's capability of understanding.
2- Parents should be a good example
in their behavior because children like to imitate their parents in their sayings and their deeds.
3- Teaching the child the religious principles.
and tutoring him in worship, taking into account the child's capability of understanding. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) is reported to have said: “Order your children to pray at the age of seven.”
4- Treating children nicely and kindly.
The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) taught us that practically. When he was praying as an Imam with the people, his grandson Al-Hasan, son of his daughter Fatimah, may Allah be pleased with them rode his back while he was bowing. The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, lengthened his bow. When he finished his prayer, some attending Companions said, “You lengthened your bow?” Then the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, answered, “My grandson rode my back and I hate hastening him.”
5- One of the important things that parents must teach their children is to choose the good company and to the avoid the bad one, because children are always influenced by the company they keep. The bad behavior can be easily transmitted through bad company. So the Prophet, (peace and blessings be upon him),warned us by saying, “Man is inclined to get influenced by his friend's manners, so one must be careful in choosing friends.” (Reported by Abu Dawud & At-Tirmidhi)
6- Encouraging the child's sense of belonging to the Muslim Ummah, by teaching him of the brotherhood between Muslims, teaching him to care for Muslims in any land, and that he is part of the Muslim body, to feel joy when Muslims are joyous, to feel sad for Muslims' sadness, and to do best to achieve the Muslim Ummah’s goals.
All of this can be done practically through:
A- Taking children to Mosques and introducing them to their brother in Islam regardless of race, language, or origin.
B- Teaching the children the history of the Prophet, (peace and blessings be upon him) and his Companions and the history of Islam, bearing in mind the child's capability of understanding.
C- Encouraging children to sympathize with Muslim problems and to contribute to the solutions such as the poverty problem and to donate some money to the hungry Muslim children.
D- Taking part in the celebrations and festivals with Muslims, and sharing picnics and creating ties with their Muslim brothers of the same age.
E- Imbuing in children the feeling of love of Allah, His Prophet, Muslims, and all people. This love will lead to special behavior towards all those loved.
These are general guidelines to raise our children Islamically, so every Muslim must take care of his children and know the correct path that must be followed. This will help us do the job we are entrusted to do as Allah proscribed, as well as the responsibility the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, has clarified, with aim of protecting the future generations of Muslims, as Allah Almighty says:
"And Say Do deeds! Allah will see your deeds..., and And you will be brought back to the All-Knower of the unseen and the seen. Then He will inform you of what you used to do." (At-Tawbah: 105)


At April 24, 2006, Anonymous misfit said...

A good one suhaa.

The one thing I'd ask my children to do constantly is to salawat. Just sharing with you too, teach them how to salawat and train them to do it in abundance. While sitting in the bus, while walking along paths... even while watching tv.

Alhamdulillah, my kids are praying by now. Just like you, I don't mind even if they don't excel academically... they don't have to be extremely good at it, important thing is they become good muslims.. yes, better than the normal.(you know what I mean) Insya Allah, if salawat is with them always... they won't go astray. This I strongly believe in.

The 3 important things I tell my kids of, zikr, salawat and istighfar. And I tell them to ask Allah for Iman and Takwa.. not for worldy materials.

Insya Allah, may Allah(swt) strengthen our faith.

Ps: May Allah(swt) forgive our sins and make us good examples for our children to follow. :)

At April 24, 2006, Blogger SUHAA said...

Ameen to your duaa misfit. jazakAllah kheir for bringing up those 3 points:
asking Allah for forgiveness..
may Allah reward u & guide us in guiding our children..

At April 24, 2006, Blogger kaleidomuslima said...

salaam, thanks for stopping by my blog. i've added you to my blogger list. inshallah i'll be back around again soon :)

At April 26, 2006, Anonymous Um Ibrahim said...

This is a wonderful and needed post Suhaa. I need to read it like everyday so i don't forget. There's a lot of things there in the list, but i believe every one of them to be true. They are especially necessary for kids growing up in the west who go through an identity crisis. We can help them to minimize this stage by doing all those things. The article mentioned teaching the history of the Prophet, but ofcourse telling them stories of Sahabah, Sahabiyat, family of the Prophet, and other important figures of Islamic history and vital as well.

At April 26, 2006, Blogger SUHAA said...

nicely said um ibrahim, so true..
this is something i definantly need to refer to from time to time to keep me sane and focussed on the purpose of being a mom.


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