Wa `alaykum As-Salamu waRahmatullahi wa Barakatuh.
In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.
In this fatwa:
There is no problem of getting married to a divorced woman who has kids. If you do it sincerely for the sake of helping her and bringing up her children properly and islamically, you will be rewarded by Allah abundantly.
Answering your question, Dr. Mohammad S. Alrahawan, Associate Professor at the department of Islamic Studies in English, Al-Azhar University, Egypt, states:
The main criterion a Muslim should seek in his wife to be is good manners and piety. On the authority of Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) who reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “A woman is married for four things: for her wealth, for her lineage, for her beauty or for her piety. Select the pious, may you be blessed!” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)
When a person is given the choice between a virgin and a previously married while both are of the same grade of righteousness and piety, scholars stated that it is recommended to get married to a virgin.
This is based on the report of Jabir ibn `Abdullah. He said, “I married a woman and went to the Prophet, he said: ‘O Jabir! Have you married?’ I said: ‘Yes.’ He said: ‘A virgin or a matron?’ I said: ‘A matron.’ He said: ‘Why didn’t you marry a young girl, so that you may play with her and she with you?’ I said: ‘O Messenger of Allah! Abdullah (his father) died and left behind seven – or nine – daughter, so I have brought someone who can look after them.'” He said: So he supplicated for me.” (At-Tirmidhi)
But there is no problem of getting married to a divorced woman who has kids. If you do it sincerely for the sake of helping her and bringing up her children properly and islamically, you will be rewarded by Allah abundantly.
Our beloved Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) got married to Khadijah who was a widow and he got married to Zainb bint Jahash who has been divorced by Zaid b. Thabit. Zainab (may Allah be pleased with her) had Usamah ibn Zayd who was called the elect of the Prophet, whom he loved so much. The Prophet (peace be upon him), moreover, got married to 11 ladies all of them have previously married with the exception of Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her).
Allah Almighty knows best.
Editor’s note: This fatwa is from Ask the Scholar’s archive and was originally published at an earlier date.