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Stuck in the Middle With You

Question and answer details
S
Stuck in the Middle With You
2005-03-27
As-salamu `alaykum. I have two best friends and the three of us have known each other for as long as we have lived. One of them is now lying to me about dating boys, meeting male friends, and the things she does with her non-Muslim friends. I know that she is disregarding the laws of Islam and thinks that I only advise her because I don't understand her. I have tried so hard to teach her that what she is doing is wrong, but she seems not to listen. Now, there is nothing more that I can say to her. The other friend feels like she is stuck in the middle; she has a relaxed attitude towards what this friend does, whereas I do not. I understand that she does not particularly feel the meaning of Islam as I do, but I fear for her wellbeing and I am worried for the happiness of her parents and family if they ever find out what she has been doing. I am scared that she will go too far and one day regret it, but there is nothing I can do to help her. The only reason I know that she is lying to me is because a number of third parties have told me of this in privacy. Am I committing sin for asking advice from scholars and other friends (who do not know her) because I am breaking the promise of those third parties? I feel like I can't win either way. I want to help her, but she doesn't want my help. I need to know what to do, but I feel like I am committing sin by asking others to try and guide me to guide her. I'm just feeling so lost, and the fact that she is even doing this is such a huge concept to me that it has thrown me off balance. I'm not sure that I know her at all, but I know that I still love her as always. Please help, Jazaka Allahu khayran.
Layla A. Asamarai
Answer
Dear sister,

First, no, there is nothing wrong with asking for help, and most especially when you do not provide identifying information. From what you have shared, I think you have done a great job of offering help. Although she has neither welcomed nor accepted the advice you have persistently shared with her. She will likely go too far and will very likely regret it, but as you say, there is nothing you can do about it. She is making choices and needs to face the reality that those choices bring with them. The only thing that you can do is be there if she needs you.

I think it is immensely mature of you to recognize that while you are not sure that you know this side of her, you still love her. You are standing on a gentle middle ground, and the way to know that is that you are not encouraging her towards wrong doing, nor are you ostracizing or attacking her for not accepting your invitations towards doing what is religiously appropriate.

I pray to Allah to guide you in your time of need and to help your friend towards the path of serenity and solace.
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