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Mom Doesn’t Pray, What to Do?



Reply Date

Jun 23, 2018


As-salamu `alaykum, My mother, although a very nice person, sometimes does not pray; however, she have very strong feelings and affection for Islam and Allah Most High. My sister is also like her. Can you tell me how I can deal with my mom and tell her very nicely about this problem? Thank you.




In this counseling answer:

The best thing to remember, especially when dealing with our parents and elders, is to be kind, to teach them by setting an example and not to be condescending with them. Therefore, the counselor suggested the questioner approach her mother and her sister with love, talk to her mother; tell her how much she loves and cares for her, tell her that she desires to be in Paradise with her and her sister. and ask her questions about salah (ritual Prayer) and pray in places in their home where she can see her. Occasionally, invite her mother to pray with her as well.

As-salamu `alaykum.

My dear sister, may Allah Most High bless you for your concern. Many times, we have people in our families and lives who are good people and they still have within them some of the purity with which we are all born. As such, they may have good characters, and in this case, there is affection for Islam as well.

The best thing to remember, especially when dealing with our parents and elders, is to be kind, to teach them by setting an example and not to be condescending with them. If we look at the example of Hassan and Hussein (may Allah be pleased with them) the grandsons of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), we see how they dealt with the man who had made his wudu’ (ablution) incorrectly. They simply asked him to judge between them to see who made their wudu’better. Your example, patience, and kindness are going to be a huge part of helping them along this path.

Other things can be done as well. Approach your mother and your sister with love, talk to your mother; tell her how much you love and care for her, tell her that you desire to be in Paradise with her and your sister. This is a sentiment she will appreciate. You could ask her questions about salah (ritual Prayer) and pray in places in your home where she can see you. Occasionally, invite her to pray with you as well.

Check out this counseling video

You can facilitate this by helping her with any chores she may have so that she will be able to pray with you. Another strategy you may try is to sit with her and re-visit stories of the Companions, the pious men and women of the past, the prophets or reflect on some verses in the Qur’an. In this way, you will indirectly motivate her.

You can also directly tell her that because you love her, you want her to pray, because on the Day of Judgment it is the first thing that we will all be questioned about (find an appropriate time to do this). All of these things can help, in sha’ Allah.

At the same time, you can approach your sister by telling her of your love for her and encourage her to pray with you as well. Remember, it is important to be gradual, so encourage her and your mom to begin by praying one or two Prayers consistently.

After about two weeks, encourage the addition of another Prayer, and then another, and so on. The other thing you can do is to encourage your sister to help you encourage your mom to pray as well. Because your mom is older, let her know of the punishments in the grave for missing Prayers. It is important not to be condescending or sound as if you are better than them. This way, you will be able to motivate them to do what is best.

Also, remember to focus on the many favors Allah Most High has blessed them with, and the promise of Paradise with all the blessings in it.

Finally, be patient! It is very important that you do not become frustrated or lose patience. In sha’ Allah, with time and du`aa’ (supplication), they will begin to pray. Please let us know how things go in the future and we pray that they are guided to complete submission and surrender to Allah Most High. In this submission, they will find true freedom and bliss in this life and, by Allah’s mercy, the next!

Wa Salam


Disclaimer: The conceptualization and recommendations stated in this response are very general and purely based on the limited information that was provided in the question. In no event shall AboutIslam, it’s volunteers, writers, scholars, counselors, or employees be held liable for any direct, indirect, exemplary, punitive, consequential or other damages whatsoever that may arise through your decision or action in the use of the services which our website provides. 

Read more:

How Do I Deal with a Mother Who Has a Big Ego?

Paradise at the Feet of Hateful Mother?

About Jeewan Chanicka

Jeewan Chanicka is from Toronto, Canada, and has been involved in working with youth, education, and social services issues since 1993. He graduated with a bachelor's degree with honors in individualized studies at York University with a focus on conflict resolution and culturally appropriate forms of mediation. He has done much work with both youth and adults, especially around parenting, teenage and youth issues, and bridging the gap between generations.

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