Do Daughters have Less Duty towards Parents?

Do Daughters have Less Duty towards Parents?

When I was born, there were some who smirked at my soft-gender. Some suggested my mother should appropriate only a portion of love for me that’s rightful for a traveler staying only until its time for the final destination – marriage. Some might also have asked her to apportion her finances and attachments to a meager extent only, for no return could be expected of me. Perhaps in our society, being a daughter and giving birth to one is still a curse.


I presume my mother had lent only a superficial ear to such resonations. She gave me all the love; in fact more of it, that a child deserves, expended all her fiscal and physical reservoirs that one does for an only child. Yes, her world centers around me.


I’m sure all mothers out there, who raise their daughters love them equally well and give as much of themselves as they to their sons. Isn’t it ironic then, when its time for daughters to stay strong for parents, support them morally and financially, and most importantly- be there for them, society pokes at them with a queer eye.


There are still people who express subtle and strong reservations against parents living with daughters, or daughter financially supporting their parents. It is yet ironic how they expect a woman to work for pooling up sum to run her household and yet look at it critically when they share a part of their sum with the aging parents.


Where it’s expected of daughter-in-laws to live and devote themselves selflessly towards their in-laws, son-in law is exempted from all of this. Let alone son in law, even the daughter is now expected to dedicate her complete loyalties, time and energies to the in-laws and less to her birth family. If she still does, it’s considered cunningness on her part or perhaps lameness on the part of husband.


This means there’s no hope for parents who only have their daughters for their children, or for those who lavish their indiscriminate love and affection on their daughters. Their entire life may be a waste when their daughters get married. And they’ll be reduced to wait for their occasional visits and gifts or perhaps needed only when they have to baby-sit their children.


After struggling hard with this question, I can’t still understand how is this right? Has God discriminated between the daughter and son, their rights and their respective obligations? Is it written anywhere that a son has more duty towards his parents than daughter? Will Allah forgive a daughter for not taking care of her parents while hold the son accountable for the same? I believe not. Then why such crooked ideals based on nothing but marshes, are still allowed to flourish?



Where our modern society often brags about gender equality, our mashed up cultural values collide with our moral and religious ideals with equal frequencies. With their pre-concieved notions, prisming only our primitive past, upheld so fast, it’s no wonder our society is hopelessly biased against women and on the whole, only degenerating to its very core.



How long our daughters would be made to eclipse their obligations fearing some regressive member of the society would point fingers at them, or would earn their husband’s anger if they do otherwise. Where I’m sure there’s justice in His law for people who break tender hearts and encumber daughters in discharging their social and religious obligations towards their parents, I’m not sure how long will it take our society to break free of its shallow, miserable ideals that keep haunting our women still.

Madeeha Ishtiaque

The content writer & person-in-charge of the The News/Geo International Blog. She monitors the social media activity on The News. Follow her on twitter @charmed0000

  • Anonymous

    feminist crap!

  • Rameez

    “”"”After struggling hard with this question, I can’t still understand how is this right? Has God discriminated between the daughter and son, their rights and their respective obligations? Is it written anywhere that a son has more duty towards his parents than daughter? Will Allah forgive a daughter for not taking care of her parents while hold the son accountable for the same? I believe not. Then why such crooked ideals based on nothing but marshes, are still allowed to flourish?”"”"”

    It would be better for the author to research first on the matter and then write her “personal” opinion.I seriously don’t know how these kind of unresearched articles are allowed to publish.The sad part is that people without adequate knowledge of Islam are allowed to form opinions on Islamic matters.The answer to your above paragraph is

    —>>>4:34 (Y. Ali) Men are the protectors and maintainers of women<<<—

    When Allah says: “Men are the qawwâmûn of women…” it means – and Allah knows best – that men are held liable for handling the affairs of women and are responsible for the women under their care. A husband, therefore, has the responsibility of taking care of his wife, protecting her, defending her honor, and fulfilling her needs regarding her religion and her worldly life. It does not mean – as all too many people have falsely assumed – that he has the right to behave obstinately towards her, compel her, subject her to his will, suppress her individuality, and thus heinously negate her identity.

    Historically,morally,ethically and religiously,men are supposed to take care of their families(mother,wife,daughters,sons,father and etc).It does not mean that women or daughters are not allowed to spend on their parents/families.It will be highly rewarded if they did this,but the fact is that Allah has commanded men to take care of women and financial matters,not the other way around.It is an obligation on men.However,I reiterate that any good act conducted by women will be equally rewarded.

    Lastly,please do not turn every little disagreement into a gender issue.Broaden your perspective and take off those feminist spectacles that you are wearing(metaphorically speaking).It is in the benefit of the human beings that Allah himself have devised a natural social order.

    P.S I apologize for any grammatical or spelling mistakes.

    • RK

      Women are as intelligent as men and are working very hard in the scientific field and making extremely valuable contributions towards the betterment of society. There are so many women scientists, doctors, engineers out there in the world and the numbers are increasing day by day. I don’t know what women need protection from?!!! if anything they need protection from is this male chauvinistic view that women somehow need to be ‘protected’ by men. I don’t see what makes men so great that they have to take on much responsibility of ‘protecting and fulfilling her needs regarding religion and worldly life.’ I am pretty sure that women are capable of doing all that by themselves.

    • Dear, I think you never understood the articel?? you have to read between the lines its not just a news from your daily news paper……

  • Gohar

    This author is far away from teachings of Quran & Sunnah, May Allah (swt) guide all of us towards the right path.

    • Abdul

      How? May you please elaborate?

      • Gohar

        Go, read and comply the teachings of Quran & Hadiths in your life. Being a muslim author even didn’t quote single ayaa’ of Quran or any sahih or even za’eef hadith not in this article but none of any of her’s past article I don’t see anything that relates her writing with Quran/Sunnah.and which should be the basis of the thoughts of any muslim provided he/she is a ‘true/practising’ muslim…

        • mano


      • I agree, Plz Elobrate Gohar???

    • sameera

      Well ,Allah says no one has the right to decide who is away from the teachings from Quran and Sunnah…May Allah give YOU the knowledge to learn and improve your understanding of religion

    • Come on Gohar??? where is Author wrong with Ism teaching, she is just saying that even daughters can take care of parents, what if some one are not blessed with Sons, ?? you will know if you will only have daughters


    Reading these Mullah’s stupid ass-inine posts on women on this blog I wish Allah had allowed women to beat up men for disobeying and demeaning their women.

    • Ahmad Rafiq

      And perhaps women like you are the reason Allah hasn’t allowed it and made it physically impossible.

      Now you get it ? Look at your comment ! Disgusting !

    • Gohar

      NASAH – I don’t consider your post as any rational person’s post, you have a disease called ‘imranphobia’ like your masters (USA) have a disease called ‘islamophobia’.

      • NASAH (USA)

        Tell me Gohar miaN — If I write “I wish” Imran had not refused to attend APC meeting — does that smack of “Imranophobia” or Imranophilia?

    • Gohar

      NASAH, Allah(swt) does kept the punishment for such men, but alas! if you ever ponder your holy book you said you believe in ..

  • saira

    i thought she was talking about mind set of people called in-laws of girls and society and before giving one word decisions about the blog you should know that in our country Islam is preached and practiced to the limit where it is useful for a person… this is problem in humans(of people in Pakistan) it is not as a matter of fact nothing wrong can be a part of Islam….

    and i know this lady is right about most of parts and that was a question which mostly people took as a comment on Islam…. nothing bad or wrong can be a part of Islam which is just used in this country….

  • M.Saeed

    Daughters according to the norms and normal circumstances only stay with the parents up to the time of their marriages. On the other hand, sons at comparable age are still in search of their careers. Therefore, daughters have already far exceeded in duties to parents than their brothers till the time they are with parents. After marriages, daughters have primary responsibility to take due care of their own families. Therefore, they cease to be comparable with brothers in duties to their parents.

    Logically speaking, daughters knowing that they have much shorter time with parents than brothers, naturally give much more intensified and saturated duties to parents.
    The two being unequal and on a completely different scales, are not comparable
    on this account.

  • Rizwan

    I agree with Rameez about Allah’s teaching’s and duties assigned to men. However, not just in Pakistan but all over the world, many muslims customize Islam and it’s teachings according to their own selfish reasons. For eg. the poor people/labour class population always says, “We are ghareeb, Allah will forgive us automatically from all wrongdoing”. I don’t think anywhere this is said. Point being, the above article is not questioning Islam’s teachings, it is simply asking the society as a whole to change their perspective towards daughters supporting their parents regardless of their marital status. God Bless.

    • Plesae read the Article in depth understnd what writer is trying to say?? is she talking about religion or the duties of Daughter then you are free to agree with any one?? thanks

  • Raj Chouhan

    Madeeha your feelings will never be understood in this male dominating society. You have tried to express the feelings of daughters for their parents and of parents who have only daughters and no son. You have rightly said ” This means there’s no hope for parents who only have their daughters for their children, or for those who lavish their indiscriminate love and affection on their daughters. Their entire life may be a waste when their daughters get married. And they’ll be reduced to wait for their occasional visits and gifts or perhaps needed only when they have to baby-sit their children.” Yes Madeeha Yes their entire life becomes a waste when their daughters get married. And are reduced to wait for their occasional visits and gifts or have to request and some time have to beg before their son-in-laws or daughter’s in-laws to just have a glimpse of their beloved daughters. May be many of my friends here would not agree with me but still I would dare to write that life becomes a curse for those parents who have only daughters and are married.

    I am unable to control my emotions and tears are flowing on my cheeks. I am Sorry

    • Anonymous

      I understand Raj does it feel when all you’ve got is a daughter..she gets married..and that’s it. You’ve nothing to hope for but her visits. If she does something for you..the society will curse you for accepting her help..will taunt her husband, let alone help her, if he doesn’t encumber her in what is her duty and wish both.
      I know many such mothers, widowed, who had their daughters their only child. Their financial and emotional state was pitiable after they wedded their daughters. Cooking, cleaning, taking care of themselves when they are ill. If they won’t cook, there’s no one else to come and feed them. And sitting all they long, they’d only wait for their daughter’s few minutes call or their visits once a month.
      Sadly, all these women knew died young, in their fifties only – perhaps of hopelessness and feeling unwanted and purposeless. I feel they were murdered by society who stuck to its shallow norms, rather than letting their daughters take care of them the way sons would have, if they had one.

      I look at those girls whose mothers died so young, it feels as if nothing can bring that inner happiness and peace to them, which would have been if they had had the honor of doing something far more than what they were able to do.

      It’s sad. Isn’t it? But they are still people on this forum debating about men protecting women and Islamic injunctions.

  • Anonymous

    ….perhaps none at all – ifthey weren’t wanted in the first place!

  • Farooq Hashmi

    Miss Ishtiaque, through accentuating daughters’ filial obligations,you have hit the nail right on its head. You deserve kudos for it.There is no gainsaying the fact that both daughters and sons have equal responsibilities to their parents.But owing to the virilocal structure of Pakistan’s civil society daughters are hampered in the fulfillment of the responsibilities to their parents. After getting married, daughters have to abandon their parents’ homes and move in with their husbands and in-laws where they have to adapt themselves to the likes and dislikes not only of their husbands but also of the in-laws_____the in-law parents,the in-law brothers and the in-law sisters,etc.They do not find a very congenial atmosphere in their in-laws’ homes.Especially,the sisters-in-law of the brides are seldom of the same kidney, therefore they have the Hobson choice of submitting to them.Generally it is observed that not only does everyone of the in-laws pick up bones with the bride on trivial matters but also cook up plans to distance her from her parents. In extreme cases she is forbidden once for all,to see her parents and siblings. In short,she is the prisoner of her husband and the in-laws,and no jail-manual is applicable to her.While a lady is debarred even from paying a visit to her parents and siblings,to expect of her to tend her parents is rather preposterous.

  • Most the replies are from people reading article like a news paper, you have to read between the lines and understnd the main theme of this article, whihc is simely elobrating the importance of women as daughters and her responsibility….She just made one mistake quote ISLAM and when any one Quote ISLAM than rest all the readers turn into MUFTI and ALAMS…..Come on guys give her a break

  • come on guys give her a break:)

  • Ansar

    While relating anything to teaching of Islam and preaching of Quran we all must look into the way of living of our ancestors and no example can match the way of living of our BELOVED HOLY PROPHET HAZRAT MUHAMMAD (S.A.W.W). If it is related to Feminine way of life we should only go back to the daughter of our HOLY PROPHET HAZRAT MUHAMMAD ( S.A.W.W) i.e. BIBI FATIMA (S.A). We must follow HER in all stages of life, while being a girl, a women and a lady. There are different stages of life of every human being either Man or Woman and each stage has its own requirements and responsibilities. Islam does not stop any girl to serve her parents or even lil’ brothers but remaining in Islamic limitations (which does not mean there are no limitations for Men). There is no discremination by ALLAH in service of parents for a Man or a Woman. In fact Islam is the only religion that gives every human being right, freedom and honor of which we have the natural and fundamental rights regardless of gender. Frankly and Islamically speaking only Women have the natural ability to form and take care of noble families ( its not just limited to service of parents) and at the same time only Women can destroy it. We are nobody to question ALLAH on HIS decisions because we can’t know what HE DOES. :)

  • Gohar

    Some people (like NASAH of US) so easily abuse the molvis without any religious knowledge but they forget that this is the same molvi that they call when they are ready to go and meet their only lord Allah (swt), why they ask them to read the ‘janazah’ prayer from the molvis at that time if they think that molvis are such culprits of our society..actually these types of people want molvi to stick to mosque only and they don’t them to interfere the life of a common man forgetting the fact that unlike other religions Islam is a complete ‘zabta-e-hayat’ (a complete way of living). If I m commenting here with respect to Islam, quran & sunnah then that’s the way every single muslim should be commmenting like that- if not then at least don’t ‘abuse’ the molvis – who knows through whom you might be purified before going to final destination….


    • NASAH (USA)

      “If I m commenting here with respect to Islam, quran & sunnah then
      that’s the way every single muslim should be commmenting like that”. (Gohar mian)

      Subhan Allah!! Masha Allah! — keya gharoor hai!!! (Daamun nichoRe deiN tuo farishtay wazoo kareiN) — just beware — don’t think Allah Taala likes maghroor molvis.

      However, ” every single Muslim” may not like to comment the ‘way’ you are commenting: Two reasons: 1)- they would not dare to write Quran, Sunnah and Muslim with small letters; 2)- they will refuse to comment on Islam with three Ms!

      As for your question asking Qalim sb — “I don’t understand why some of us makes fun of them (molvis)”? — now you know why.

  • Ifrah

    i like her, shez smart.
    @ Rameez … when your society runs on much more extraislamic principles than islamic ones, it is important to try to keep them fair too. leaving parents to neglect when you can do something about it, or leaving the parents of your partner to neglect when they are too old/weak to help themselves is immoral.
    most of what our society preaches is baqwaas. and i agree that Our Society makes a capable woman / her husband / her parents think Twice before a girl can step forward and take extra responsibilities to care for her parents. otherwise not having a son really does doom your life in Pakistan :)

  • Ashok Maurya

    I have a partial answer to the query, this is due to a long history of work divided between men and women and which were later attached to genders. Families have been created around a single man and one wife(s) with him. So, essentially it’s importing and exporting of women between families. With this it and financially dependent on their men, women have had no choice but to submit to the unilateral rules made by men. Well, with export and import of women it has been envisioned to transfer the duties between ladies from daughter to daughter-in-law. It has nothing to do with any religion and culture as it is common to all cults. With a long dependency of women on men made them unquestioning and helpless. But scenario has started changing as some women are now becoming self reliant especially financially, and they are now realizing their duties towards their parents as well as you are feeling. I hope with women’s progress this scenario will change greatly. Certainly when laws of societies have been framed women were not consulted. But I hope women in 21st century will change this to a great degree.

  • Farooq Hashmi

    Mr.Gohar,I draw a line between a “maulvi” and an ” educated maulvi.” With the exception of a few, the maulvis are mere “maulvis”,hence ignorant. They are seldom qualified from the accredited institutions. All they do is attend a one-room seminary where they made to memorize a few verses from the Holy Qur’aan,to help them execute a few religious obligations_____ lead the routine 5-time prayers, lead the funeral prayers and solemnize nikahs,etc.Technically speaking, ‘maulvi’ is an all-embracing term and only the one who is well-baked in the major branches of studies____ both mundane and spiritual_____is entitled to be addressed as a ‘maulvi’. But it’s an irony that a bearded ignorant mosque-runner “taught” by an equally ignorant bearded seminary-runner,is addressed as a ‘maulvi’. I happened to request many a “maulvi” to spell ‘ socialism ‘ and ‘ communism ‘ in Urdu and he failed miserably. “Maulvi’s” prejudice against the modern sciences and technology is proverbial. However,it’s totally a different ball game that the thankless “maulvi” enjoys all the amenities the science and technology has bestowed on him.

  • Farooq Hashmi

    Sir, “All that is happening” is a social problem and that can be solved only on the lines of the social science of sociology. The country of Pakistan is inhabited not by angels but by fallible human-beings.Only the angels would listen to the ethics and the dictates of religion and not the evil-disposed human-beings. As the human-beings have a propensity to evil, no religious inhibitions are effective in holding them in control. Social problems can be solved only with the draconian man-made laws Thus,to find a solution of that social problem in the dictates of religion is tantamount to killing an elephant with a sling-shot. Scientific issues are settled with scientific principles.The most of the social problems of Pakistanis are rightfully ascribed to their collective neurosis of entangling every matter to religion.

  • Maria Mariam

    very nice and very thoughtful blog dear Madeeha.The people of our society have to change their mindset towards women.I am facing the same terrible situation.


    Son has 1st responsibility to take care of his parents and that is why our religion has given double the share to son from the inherited/parents estate. However….if son is not capable of taking this responsibility due to genuine reasons then daughters are encouraged to take care of their parents. In many cases I have seen where parents don’t have son, their daughter take care of their parents and their husbands understand their situation. Surely those husbands who don’t allow their wives to take care of their parents will be answerable on the day of judgment.