What is the ruling on one who started the fasting month having had a disagreement with his parents about the household expenses which they expect him to pay in full, without any contribution from them, even though they are able to help him?.
Allaah has enjoined honouring and obeying one’s parents and has forbidden disobedience towards them. He has also enjoined keeping good company with them. All of that is stated clearly in the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah of His Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).
Fasting has not been prescribed for the purpose of being hungry and thirsty, rather Allaah has told us of the great wisdom behind the prescription of fasting, which is so that a person may attain piety and fear of Allaah thereby.
Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“O you who believe! Observing As-Sawm (the fasting) is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may become Al-Muttaqoon (the pious)”
Piety means doing acts of obedience and worship, and abstaining from acts of disobedience and sin.
Hence the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) told us that in many cases people fast and get nothing from their fast except hunger and thirst.
It was narrated that Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “There may be people who fast and get nothing from their fast except hunger, and there may be those who pray qiyaam and get nothing from their qiyaam but a sleepless night.”
Narrated by Ibn Maajah, 1690; classed as saheeh by Ibn Hibbaan, 8/257, and by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Targheeb, 10/83.
It was narrated that Ibn ‘Umar (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “A fasting person’s gain from the fast may be hunger and thirst, and the praying person’s gain from qiyaam may be a sleepless night.”
Narrated by al-Tabaraani in al-Kabeer, 12/382; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Targheeb wa’l-Tarheeb, 1084.
Just as the Muslim should make the most of the opportunity whilst one or both of his parents are still alive to enter Paradise because of them, so too he should make the most of the opportunity in Ramadaan to repent, seek forgiveness and fear his Lord so that he might enter Paradise because of that.
It was narrated that Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) ascended the minbar and said: “Ameen, ameen, ameen.” It was said: ‘O Messenger of Allaah, you ascended the minbar and said, ‘Ameen, ameen, ameen.” He said: “Jibreel (peace be upon him) came to me and said: ‘If Ramadaan comes and a person is not forgiven, he will enter Hell and Allaah will cast him far away. Say Ameen.’ So I said Ameen. He said: ‘O Muhammad, if both or one of a person’s parents are alive and he does not honour them and he dies, he will enter Hell and Allaah will cast him far away. Say Ameen.’ So I said Ameen. He said: ‘If you are mentioned in a person’s presence and he does not send blessings upon you and he dies, he will enter Hell and Allaah will cast him far away. Say Ameen.’ So I said Ameen.”
Narrated by Ibn Hibbaan, 3/188; classed as saheeh by al-Shaykh al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Targheeb, 1679.
Conclusion: You must strive to please your parents even if they make you do more than you can bear. If you seek reward from Allaah by doing that, Allaah will – if He wills – open the doors of provision to you. There is no need to be sensitive about your family asking for money for maintenance, because they are not asking for it for haraam or sinful purposes, so there is nothing wrong with that.
You could speak to them – if they are well off – in a nice manner, and make them understand your need and that you are not able to give more than you are already giving. Similarly you also have to help them and spend on them as much as you can if they are in need.
The onset of the month of Ramadaan is an opportunity to set things straight between you and them, and it is an opportunity to give and be generous. The kind of giving which brings the greatest reward is spending on one’s family as it says in the hadeeth of Hakeem ibn Hizaam (may Allaah be pleased with him) according to which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The upper hand is better than the lower hand, and start with those who are under your care, and the best of charity is that given when you can afford it, and start with those for whose maintenance you are responsible.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 1428; Muslim, 1034. So spend and seek reward with Allaah, and accept the glad tidings from your Lord.
And Allaah knows best.