Is It Haram For A Woman To Not Get Married

Married couple holding hands
Photo Courtesy: Kumon

Marriage in Islam is considered half of the religion. 

It’s a pact between a man and a woman that lasts for a lifetime and that is regulated by Shariah laws. However, some women prefer to stay single for a lifetime and refuse to get married for several reasons. 

So, what does Islam say about women who refuse to get married? And what does Islam say about marriage? 

According to our research, generally speaking, It is not mandatory for a woman to get married. There are certain condition where it does become borderline mandatory though. For example, if a woman fears that her lust will drive her to commit fornication, then she is obliged to get married.

Is It Haram For A Woman To Not Get Married? 

For some scholars, it is mandatory for a woman to get married on certain conditions only.

For instance, if she fears that her lust drives her to commit fornication then she is obliged to get married. Also, if she fails to provide her own food or shade herself. (Source).

However, according to Hadiths, a woman shall be consulted on whether or not she wants to get married (Source). A woman can not be forced into marriage.

That being said, the arbitration differs from a situation to another but on a large scale, it is not forbidden for a woman to not get married.

Is Marriage Required in Islam?

For both men and women, marriage is required in many cases.

For instance, if a man can afford to get married, then he shall do it since it will protect him from sinning and committing fornication. Meanwhile, if a woman can’t control her lust or shade herself then she shall get married.

The first hadeeth was narrated by al-Bukhaari (5066) and Muslim (1400) from Ibn Mas‘ood, who said:

We were with the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), young men who had nothing of wealth. The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said to us:

“O young men, whoever among you can afford it, let him get married, for it is more effective in lowering the gaze and guarding one’s chastity. And whoever cannot afford it should fast, for it will be a shield for him.”

Shaykh Muhammad Saalih al-Munajjid – Islam Q&A

Additionally, it is Sunnah to get married and we as Muslims ought to follow the Prophets Sunnah. This is because marriage has many benefits in both Dunya (Life) and Akhirah (Afterlife).  

Anas ibn Mālik (may Allah be pleased with him) reported:

A group from among the Prophet’s Companions asked the Prophet’s wives about the acts of worship that he performed in private. Some of them said:

“I will not marry women.” Others said: “I will not eat meat.” Some others said: “I will not lie down on a bed.”

Their words reached the Prophet (may Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him). So, he praised Allah and glorified Him and said:

“What is the matter with those people who said such-and-such? Indeed, I pray and I sleep too, I fast sometimes and do not fast other times, and I marry women. Whoever turns away from my Sunnah does not belong to me.”

[Sahih] – [Al-Bukhari and Muslim] (Source)

Of course, if a man or a woman finds the righteous person that they feel they can get married to, it is recommended for them to accept them. 

The Prophet Muhammad (Peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) taught his followers in many Hadiths about the various characteristics which one looks for in a spouse and their relative importance.

Among those Hadith is the following:

A woman is married for her religion, her wealth or her beauty. You must go for the one with religion, may your hands be in the dust! (if you fail to heed)”. And: “If someone with whose piety and character you are satisfied comes to you, marry to him. If you do not do so, there will be trials in the earth and a great deal of evil.

[Sahih] – [Al-Bukhari and Muslim] (source)

In conclusion, women as well as men are asked to get married as our Prophet Muhammed Peace Be Upon Him has advised. This is because it keeps us from Haram and fornication and it is the Sunnah of our beloved prophet.

Allah says in the Quran: “And We created you in pairs.” Quran (An-Naba:8) 


I am a Muslim that has been living in North America for more than a decade. I am keen on knowing which foods, lifestyle choices, and financial decisions that are halal or not. I enjoy sharing this information with my readers and do the research myself so that readers don't have to.

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