First of all, we’d like to state that Islam orders us to be kind and loyal to non-Muslim parents, let alone Muslim ones. Referring to this, Allah Almighty says: “Thy Lord has decreed, that you worship none save Him, and (that you show) kindness to parents. If one of them or both of them attain old age with thee, say not ‘Fie’ unto them nor repulse them, but speak unto them a gracious word.” (Al-Isra’ 17: 23)

However, favouring parents and being dutiful to them is not allowed if such favoring and that obedience involve disobedience to Allah. At the same time, a married person has duties towards his wife and children. He has to strike balance between his duties towards his parents and wife. In the case parents ask him to do anything wrong regarding his family (wife and children), he has to deal with the issue wisely. He has to approach his parents kindly trying to convince them of his right attitude. If they did not respond, he is still required to keep good relations with them.

Shedding more light on this issue, Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a senior lecturer and Islamic scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario , Canada , states:

“A person’s duty toward his parents comes second only to his duty toward Allah. Allah says: “Your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him, and that you shall render utmost kindness to your parents” (Al-Isra’: 23).

This, however, does not mean that he can be neglectful or complacent of his duties towards his spouse and children. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “There is no sin worse than a person’s willful neglect of his own family (i.e., wife and children).” A Muslim ought to balance his duties toward his wife and children with those that he owes toward his parents and other blood relations. Since Islam is a religion of balance, one is supposed to balance both these duties.