I Love Him, but Can’t Reveal My Past

11 July, 2019
Q I am a 19-year-old female in a Muslim country who needs to ask a very important question. About five years ago, I had some sexual contact with a male just about my age. We were dressed every time we met and none of us experienced orgasm. We met a few times for a year, but we then stopped meeting because we felt what we were doing was wrong. No one but us and God knows about this (and now you).

However, the guilt and fear from God really hurt me for a very long time until today. Soon after we stopped meeting, I made tawbah, repentance, and put on the hijab, but still felt very guilty. I feel as if I don't deserve to be with any male Muslim when it comes to a future marriage, since they expect a female completely virgin. Nevertheless, at university, I met a gentleman who shared the same feelings I had for him. We plan to get married soon, and we avoid anything haram.

However, I still feel very guilty for not telling him the truth about myself. He thinks I'm pure. I feel I'm betraying him and lying to him for keeping this secret. I'm torn between two choices: tell him the truth and, thus, destroy my reputation in the society and shatter my chances of ever getting married or keep it a secret and feel horrible all my life for not telling him. One day, I almost told him about what I did. I told him he may not be interested in me anymore. If he knew about the horrible thing I did in the past. I never told him what it was I exactly did, but I'm worried he may confront me and ask.

My main question is, would it be haram for me to swear to him that I have never engaged in a (semi) sexual relationship with someone else years ago? Or should I be honest and face the consequences from the family and society? Should I feel guilty about it even after I did tawbah? Please help me. Please note we only kissed each other.


In this counseling answer:

• We suggest strongly that you not uncover what Allah (swt) has already chosen to cover for you.

• Your repentance should continue so that you do not become complacent.

Salamu `Alaikum, 

Thank you for writing to us. Here are some thoughts for your consideration.

First, all praise is due to Allah (swt) who guided you back to the straight path after you had chosen to engage in a pre-marital relationship. We are relieved to hear that you restrained yourself going any further than kissing and that you repented and have been guided to put your life straight, in sha’ Allah. Do not take lightly this experience because you will only truly benefit from it if you make a solid commitment that you will never ever commit such sins again in the future. We are also glad to hear that you started wearing the hijab and all praise is due to Allah (swt) for that.

karim serageldin & naaila clay

Second, remember that Allah (swt) Most High has covered your past sins in such a way that only you and your former boyfriend know what you both did. Unless your former boyfriend tells, then, as you said, literally, the only ones who know what you did are you, your boyfriend, Allah (swt), and now us. And even then, we do not know you but know only that you did such and such in the past.

We suggest strongly that you not uncover what Allah (swt) has already chosen to cover for you. If He (swt) Most High has covered your past sins, it is not right that you should bring it up to your future spouse. What purpose would it serve to tell someone that one was sinful in the past? If one has repented, returned to the straight path, and has been essentially sin-free since then, then one should be grateful to Allah (swt) and leave the past in the past and move on with one’s life.

We read in the Qur’an an advice to people about not inquiring too deeply about such sensitive matters:

“O you who have believed, do not ask about things which, if they are shown to you, will distress you. But if you ask about them while the Qur’an is being revealed, they will be shown to you. Allah has pardoned that which is past; and Allah is Forgiving and Forbearing.” (Qur’an 5:101)

Your future spouse of any worth will only see you as who you are today and, in sha’ Allah, who you have the potential to become in the future. Why putting doubt in his heart by talking about the past? There is no good that can come of it.

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Finally, remember that your repentance should continue so that you do not become complacent, and you don’t ever incline towards sinful behavior again. Focus on improving yourself and be heartened by what Allah (swt) Most High tells us in the Qur’an:

Say, “O My servants who have transgressed against themselves [by sinning], do not despair of the mercy of Allah . Indeed, Allah forgives all sins. Indeed, it is He who is the Forgiving, the Merciful. And return [in repentance] to your Lord and submit to Him before the punishment comes upon you; then you will not be helped.”(Qur’an 39: 53-54)

You have already hinted to this young man that you did something horrible in the past. We suggest strongly that you only tell him from now on that you are grateful to Allah (swt) to have been guided back to the straight path and that you have committed yourself to please Allah (swt).

Make istikharah as well to seek the guidance and assistance of Allah (swt) Most High. If you find that the young man insists on knowing your past, we suggest that you reconsider marriage to him because if he is so concerned about your past, he might never be able to see you as you are today and what, in sha’allah, you will become tomorrow. Do not speak too much about the past, just make du’aa’ and focus on your future.

And Allah (swt) knows best.


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?

Do I have to Tell My Future Husband About My Sinful Past?

About Dr. Abdullah Abdur Rahman
Dr. Abdullah Abdur Rahman had obtained his Masters and PhD in Social Work and has worked in the US as a licensed social worker since then. His focus is on counseling Muslims in non-Muslim countries, with special emphasis on life in North America, counseling adolescents, pre-marital counseling, online counseling for married couples and da`wah (inviting people to Islam).