A lot of married couples often ask themselves, “Is it necessary to consummate a marriage in Islam?” The answer is, it is necessary.
Islam values the importance of marriage and considers family life a blessing. It is the sacred bond that brings spiritual, physical, and emotional tranquility as well as stability. Consummating a marriage further strengthens the bond shared by the partners as they start a new journey together in their marital home.
Let’s dive deep into the matter.
What Does Consummating a Marriage Mean?
According to Islam, consummating a marriage means spending time with a spouse privately after marriage. After signing the marital contract and making the marriage known to the public, a couple is permitted to consummate their marriage.
A marriage is consummated by living together in the marital home of the spouses. It is not necessary for physical intimacy to take place in order to consummate the marriage. Whether intimacy happens or not, the marriage still remains valid.
Why is it Important to Consummate a Marriage in Islam?
In Islam, the consummation of marriage is essential because it not only allows spouses to develop a strong relationship between them but also it lets society know that they are actually married.
If a couple gets married and lives together in their marital home, society will acknowledge that they are married. Also, spending time together will allow them to understand each other well and further strengthen their relationship. The marriage is consummated in this case.
On the other hand, if a couple gets married, but the husband does not take his wife to the marital home, their marriage is not consummated. The reason could be any hindrances, such as home renovation, studies, or sickness that prevent both of them from living under the same roof.
In this case, the couple should refrain from spending time together elsewhere without announcing their consummation. If they do it without announcing their consummation, then that can lead to negative consequences. The husband may pass away or divorce the wife, and when the wife expects a child, she will raise suspicion. This can be detrimental to her reputation as well as her family’s.
The professional Muslim matchmaker, Noble Marriage recommends that the couple move to their marital home before consummating their marriage. While there is no specific time limit for that, it is recommended that they do it as soon as possible so that they can enjoy their new married life.
How to Consummate a Marriage?
To consummate a marriage, Islam recommends following the rules below:
- The husband should treat his wife with love and kindness, such as offering her to have a drink, like milk or juice. He should place his hand on her hand and say, “Bismillah”. Then he should ask for blessing by reciting some words as the Prophet (PBUH) said,
“When one of you marries a woman or buys a servant, let him say:
‘Allahumma inni as-aluka khayraha wa khayra ma jabaltaha ‘alayhi wa a’udhu bika min sharriha wa min sharri ma jabaltaha ‘alayhi’”
(Translation: “O Allah, I ask You for her goodness and the goodness which You have created in her, and I seek refuge with You from her evil and the evil which You have created in her”)
- The husband should pray two rak’ahs salat with her as it is practiced by the early generations. The Companions of the Prophet, (PBUH) told these words to Abu Sa’id (the freed slave of Abu Usayd):
“When your wife comes into you, pray two rak’ahs and ask Allah for the goodness of what has come to you, and seek refuge with Him from its evil.”
- When he wants to consummate the marriage, he should say some words according to the Hadith. Prophet (PBUH) said,
“When one of you wants to approach (have intercourse with) his wife if he says:
‘Bismillahi Allahumma jannibna al-Shaytan wa jannib al-Shaytan ma razaqtana’
(Translation: “In the name of Allah, O Allah, protect us from Shaytan and protect whatever You give to us from Shaytan”)
then if they are given a child, Shaytan will not harm it.”
1. What is the Age of Consummation of Marriage in Islam?
In Islam, there is no stipulated age for the consummation of marriage. A couple can consummate their marriage anytime after signing the marriage contract.
It was narrated from ‘Aa’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) that the Prophet (PBUH) married her when she was six years old, and he consummated the marriage when she turned nine. She stayed with the Prophet (PBUH) for nine years.
2. Can There be Marriage without Consummation?
A marriage is still considered to be valid without consummation. After a couple has concluded their marriage contract, the man is entitled to the rights of a husband and the woman to the rights of a wife.
3. When Should Marriage Consummation be Done?
There is no specific period for consummating a marriage in Islam. As long as the couple has a valid marriage contract, it is permissible for them to decide what to do between themselves.
Before making any decisions, it is crucial that both the husband and the wife take each other’s personal comfort into account. If either of them is unprepared, the other should respect their opinion to avoid any awkward situation.
On top of that, the consummation of marriage should not occur unless it is ‘announced’, which means taking the wife to the husband’s marital home.
So, is it necessary to consummate a marriage in Islam? As you have learned from this guide, it is indeed necessary to consummate a marriage. Islam teaches us to do what’s right for the well-being of ourselves and other people.
Therefore, by consummating a marriage, a couple can avoid any unpleasant situation and enjoy a blissful married life.