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Telling Past Sins to Husband: Necessary?



Reply Date

Jul 11, 2018


Salam, I am 24 years old. Around the ages of 13-16, I was sexually touched against my choice by my cousin, but at the same time, I didn't really put up a fight due to lack of knowledge, being naive, and having a low self-esteem. I have repented sincerely to Allah for not resisting or stopping him since he made me feel special. I have full hope that since Allah is Al-Ghafur, He has forgiven me for my ignorance and will also conceal and erase my sins that I have repented from.

My problem now is that recently I have been married (nikkah) to another cousin of mine, and he is asking me about my past, and if I have ever been with another man sexually. I have told him on a number of occasions that I am a virgin (which is true) and have told him vaguely of what happened between me and our cousin, and that it was against my will. I have covered my sins and the part where I was not resisting because I know that you are not supposed to confess your sins to anyone except Allah as it might create conflicts.

Also, for me, since I have repented, I feel as if I have healed and as if it really never did happen. Since then, I have been careful to properly cover and not mix with non-mahrams unnecessarily and never have allowed myself to be in that situation again. If I tell my husband everything in details where I have been touched (as he is asking), I know it will hurt him a lot, he won't see me the same way, and I will lose a lot of respect in his eyes. However, he keeps asking and says things like, "think carefully and tell me everything, because if you hide it now and I find out after rukhsati (our official wedding ceremony which will be in a few months and I will then live with him) or get to know about it on the Day of Judgment, I won't be able to forgive you."

I really don't want to tell him. It doesn't bother me anymore, and I won't think about it if I don't tell him, but if I do tell him, I know he will not look at me with the respect he has for me, especially in our marital bed. He will think about it every time I am with him because I know how special he feels; he's the only man who gets to see and touch me. He might also not trust me that I will never do it again and be paranoid about keeping me to himself. If I don't tell him though, I am afraid of Allah's displeasure. If my husband finds out later, he will be displeased with me forever which, in turn, will lead to Allah's displeasure.

On one hand, I feel that I should tell him to avoid this and maybe Allah wants me to not lie or hide anything from my husband as I have promised him. On the other hand, I feel like Allah wants me to cover up my sins and won't expose me ever for what I have repented from. Those incidents have drawn me closer to Allah so I am thankful for them, but I don't think my husband will understand that because I have tried explaining that to him.

So, if I continue to tell my husband that he knows everything that happened (which is somewhat a lie because even though he knows, I haven’t told him everything exactly), will I gain his and Allah's displeasure further in life or in the Aakhirah? This is causing a lot of stress for me, and I don't know where else to turn for help I can get anonymously. JazakAllahu Khair.



Telling Past Sins to Husband: Necessary?

In this counseling answer:

“Telling your husband more details about your past will only make things worse. Do not share any more about it, especially if you feel God has forgiven you and brought you closer through this journey.”

As-Salaaamu ’Alaykum sister,

May God increase you in knowledge and patience with your situation.

I hope you consider the following points of advice, and in sha’ Allah, it will relieve you of your stress and guide you to make the best decision for you.

Your love for your husband is apparent. Your love for God is also apparent. Remember, they are not the same nor should they be equal. Your life goal is not to make your husband happy under all circumstances. I feel your struggle is between making God and your husband happy. You have chosen your relationship with God above your husband (this is why you have not shared more details), and this is the right choice. Do not disobey God in obedience of your husband. When God has graced us with covering our sins, we should never reveal them!

„There is no obedience to anyone in disobedience to God, verily obedience is in that which is correct. „ ( Bukhari and Muslim)

Your husband should not threaten you with his displeasure if you don’t tell him about your past. Technically, it is not his business. Your future is his business. Telling your husband more details about your past will only make things worse. Do not share any more about it, especially if you feel God has forgiven you and brought you closer through this journey. Your perception seems to be accurate, and it is your truth. Stick with your intuition. If your husband can not let go of this matter, he needs to seek counsel. He has no right to probe your past from an Islamic perspective. If he did, then the idea of true repentance and letting go of mistakes would not be a reality in our religion.

Check out this counseling video:

Sometimes, it is wiser to withhold information for the betterment of the situation. In your case, it is better not to tell than to think you have to because you are being dishonest. Think about it like this: there is a difference between literal truth and heartfelt honesty. Literal truth can still cause pain and harm. If you tell your husband everything, you are sharing all the literal facts of truth but will potentially damage your relationship. Upholding true Truth (Al Haqq) is to honor reality with honesty, wisdom, beauty, and all other virtues. This is why Islam is the Truth, because it contains a complete package of practicing virtues including honesty, warmth, and kindness. Sometimes, it is more truthful to cover than to reveal.

The Day of Judgment is going to be so heavy and momentous on every single soul that no one will care about anyone else. Your husband will not find out about your life secrets nor will you of his. Each of us will have our own secrets revealed, and we must account for it – alone. Each of you will be in the ultimate presence of God, drowning in your own accountability. In short, there will be no communication between you two, and this topic will be irrelevant.

„And fear a Day when no soul will suffice for another soul at all, nor will intercession be accepted from it, nor will compensation be taken from it, nor will they be aided.” (Quran 2:48)  

With God, may you be strengthening with the best decisions, Amin!



Disclaimer: The conceptualization and recommendations stated in this response are very general and purely based on the limited information provided in the question. In no event shall AboutIslam, its counselors or employees be held liable for any damages that may arise from your decision in the use of our services.

Read more:

Fiancé Cannot Accept My Sinful Past

She Has a Sinful Past; Shall I Marry Her?

Old Friends Always Remind Me of My Sinful Past

About Karim Serageldin

Karim Serageldin, founder of Noor, completed his BA in psychology & religion, followed by an MA in east-west psychology with a specialization in spiritual counseling. He is a certified life coach with years of teaching and community outreach experience. His practical work and research includes developing a modern framework of Islamic psychology, relationship, family and youth coaching. He provides seminars and workshops in the United States. You can contact Br. Karim at: or

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