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Committed a Shameful Sin: Should I Tell My Parents?

09 January, 2019
Q As-Salamu `alaykum. I committed a sin that I am ashamed of but I have repented and asked Allah for forgiveness and I have removed myself from the situation as quickly as I put myself into it. The problem is that now I have an overwhelming urge to tell my parents. Although I did not commit fornication, I came close to doing so. Should I conceal my sin or tell them?


Wa `alaykum As-Salamu wa Rahmatullahi 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:

Our advice to you is to continue with your repentance and spare no effort in seeking to be close to Allah. Seek forgiveness from Allah and do not reveal your sin to anybody.

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In response to your question, Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a senior lecturer and Islamic scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, states:

If you have committed a sin in secret, your repentance is also to be done secretly. You are not to disclose what Allah has concealed or covered for you, as the rule is that a sin that is committed secretly is also repented from secretly, while a sin that is committed publicly must be repented from publicly.

You are, therefore, urged to hasten to return to the Lord, crying and begging for His forgiveness.

Remember that in order for your repentance to be acceptable, you must remove yourself from the circumstances that led you to sin in the first place.

In addition to cutting off your relations with the person immediately, you must show true contrition and remorse for the sin you have committed and resolve never to return to it again.

Also, it is important that you surround yourself with pious people and occupy yourself with good works.

Telling your parents about your sin is not a prerequisite for Allah to grant you forgiveness as Allah says,

{Say: O My servants who have wronged against their own souls! Do not despair of Allah’s mercy! For Allah forgives all sins; for He is indeed Forgiving, Compassionate. Turn to Your Lord repentantly, and submit to Him, before the torment overtakes you when you shall not be helped.} (Az-Zummar 39:53-54)

In the above verse, we are told to repent by sincerely returning to Allah and submitting to His will, which means to obey His laws. It is, therefore, sufficient for you to do this. So never think about repeating your sin, and remain steadfast while keeping yourself occupied with good works. May Allah accept your repentance and help us all to remain steadfast, Ameen.

Almighty Allah knows best.

Editor’s note: This fatwa is from Ask the Scholar’s archive and was originally published at an earlier date.