Rules of Iddat

By Mufti Shafiq Jakhura (Darul Ihsan Centre)
Posted: 4 Jamad-u-Thani 1430, 29 May 2009

Q.Here are some questions regarding a woman in her iddat (the mourning waiting period for a widowed woman).

Can she

  1. wear colored clothes?
  2. use hair oil?
  3. wear ear rings to keep the piercing open?
  4. step outside her home out of necessity?
  5. receive guests?
  6. use the phone and Internet?

A. 1) What is meant by colored clothes is those clothes which are worn to beautify oneself. Such clothes should not be worn. However, if the clothes are not new and are not generally used for beautification then they could be worn even though they may be colored. (Hindiya 1/533)

2) If a lady has a headache and applies oil that does not have a fragrance with the intention of medication and not with the intention of beautification then this is acceptable.

3) If the ear rings are worn occasionally with the intention that the ears that have been pierced do not close up and they are not exposed then this is acceptable.

4) It is permissible for a lady in Iddat to go into her garden, veranda and to hang the clothes. (Fataawaa Mahmoodiya 13/402)

5) It is not objectionable for other women to visit the lady during her Iddat, provided the laws of Shariah regarding hijab and the like are not flouted. This practice helps the bereaved lady to overcome her grief.

6) It is permissible to speak on the phone, read the newspaper (permissible content) and use the internet for permissible purposes.

And Allah Ta'ala Knows Best