I embraced Islam four months ago and my father does not know yet. I live with my father and my brother only, and my relationship with my father is not good. He says bad words to me and sometimes hits me. I cannot tell him that I am a Muslim, firstly because we do not speak or communicate with one another and secondly because he would go crazy and the situation at home would become even worse. Last week I found out that he booked a stupid holiday for us at the beginning of August, for two weeks during Ramadan, and I cannot tell my father that I do not want to go because he has paid for it and will never let me not go, because he has actually booked it. I do not know what to do and I feel that this test I am facing is very difficult and I cannot do anything about it, and it is making my faith decrease. I hope that you can help me.
We ask Allah to make things easy for you and grant you relief from this distress. We congratulate you on embracing Islam, the religion of the Prophets and Messengers (peace be upon them), apart from which Allah does not accept any other religion from anyone. It is a great gift and immense blessing from Him. What you are suffering of trials and tribulations, you will come to know that it is not equivalent to even a moment in which you taste the sweetness of faith and the comfort of certainty and trusting Allah, may He be glorified and exalted. With regard to the reward in the Hereafter, what Allah has prepared for the one who is patient and steadfast, and puts up with hardships for the sake of His religion, and gives precedence to loving and pleasing Him, is something that cannot be described. Our Lord, may He be glorified and exalted, says (interpretation of the meaning):
“No person knows what is kept hidden for them of joy as a reward for what they used to do”
And the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and it has not entered the mind of man.” Narrated by Muslim, 312.
Dear sister, if you live your whole life in this world in hardship, misery, worry and distress, one dip in Allah’s Paradise – may Allah make us and you among its people – will make you forget all the hardships and difficulties you encountered even if you were the most miserable of people on earth, to such an extent that you would swear that you never went through any calamity or problem or misery! If that is the case for one who is merely dipped once in Allah’s Paradise, how about if Paradise itself is to be your eternal abode?
So we advise you to be patient and steadfast. The blessing that you have been given of embracing Islam requires you to make sacrifices and be patient in doing so. We assure you that this problem will not last for the rest of your life; rather we are certain that our Lord, may He be exalted, will answer your prayers and those of the Muslims who read your story and relief from the situation you are in will come soon. Who knows, perhaps Allah will guide your father and brother and they will be a help to you in following your religion.
What we advise you to do is to show kindness to your father; show him love and let him think that you are obeying him, even if he insists on travelling in Ramadan, until his attitude changes and he begins to treat you fairly. It is important that your thinking should focus on preserving your capital, which is staying in Islam and adhering to it until you get the opportunity to declare your religion and show it openly, and adhere to all its rituals and rulings and also call people to it.
Whether you stay at home or travel with your father, you can avoid going out of the house as much as possible and give excuses such as sickness and so on. You can also avoid mixing with strange men (non-mahrams), and avoid staying up late and seeing and listening to haraam things. Seek the help of Allah in all your affairs, for Allah is the best of supporters and helpers. Fear Allah as much as you can and remember that Allah, may He be glorified and exalted, does not burden any soul with more than it can bear. He is too merciful to His slaves to hold you accountable for something you were unable to do and could not do.
We advise you to go to the nearest Islamic centre in the city where you live and tell them about your situation; they will be more able than us to evaluate the circumstances you are going through and will be better able to give you advice as to what you should do, whether you should announce your religion openly or continue putting up with the situation you are in for a little while longer. Praise be to Allah, there are many trustworthy Islamic centres in your country.
And Allah knows best.