How long do my duties last as a son and a father?

The Details of the Question

- I am a 37-year-old adult male.
- When my parents do something wrong, is it appropriate for me to say it and do what is necessary?
- Does my responsibility as a father end when my children reach puberty?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

Both fatherhood and sonhood/daughterhood continue throughout life; they never end.

In that case, we should represent Islam before we preach it; that is, we should be a role model. Then, we can kindly, respectfully and sweetly remind the elders, and compassionately and lovingly advise the younger ones if it is not likely to harm them.

First of all, since we are human beings, we have responsibility and conscience as a necessity of all the Names and Attributes that Allah has made manifest on us.

Therefore, we follow some tasks that we do as a simple task, even when our task is over, by glancing to see what happens until we feel comfortable.

Moreover, this sense of responsibility never ends in our social relations; that is how we always approach our family members, friends, neighbors, and the people we see on the street.

In fact, this sense of responsibility has been given to us in order to carry out the duty of “Amr bil maruf nahy anil munkar (enjoining the good, forbidding the evil)”, which is one of the most important orders of the Quran, that is, to convey the message of the religion of Islam. Otherwise, we will say, “It is none of our business.”

The issue of our duties and responsibilities towards children and parents are specifically stated in the Quran, and we are told that if they have a demand contrary to Islam, we must not obey but that we must obey all of their other orders and requests even if they are unbelievers.

Our material responsibilities as a father, on the other hand, are to support our child until he or she starts work and perhaps gets married, taking into account the conditions of the society we live in. It is definitely quite normal for this support to continue after that if we have the means; there cannot be an age limit about it.

Duties such as spiritual responsibility and guiding definitely continue until the end of our lives.

In that case, fatherhood and sonhood/daughterhood continue throughout life; they never end.

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