OCD Guidance

Nov 15, 2023 | Taharah (Purity)


Assalamu Alaykum,

I would like to ask a question regarding my mother. She spends long hours in the bathroom and kitchen everyday. She washes the dishes over and over again. She washes herself many times also. For example, when doing wudhu or when taking a shower. This shows she wastes a huge amount of water which is very sinful. This has been going on for many years.
I, as her daughter, have tried multiple times to advise her to stop doing these things. My father has also told her many times. However, she does not listen and seems to carry on what she is doing.
Also, she does not know how to recite the Quran so I have told her to attend the quran class close to our house. But she doesn’t seem to show any interest in that either.
As her daughter, I feel very much concerned about my mother and just don’t know what to do anymore. I feel like giving up on her at times but I fear that I have a responsibility to change and correct her too.

Could you please advise me on what to do.

Jazakallahu Khayrun


Firstly, may Allah reward you for your genuine concern for your mother’s well-being in the hereafter. It is commendable that you are actively seeking advice on how to address these concerns.

Regarding the excessive use of water, if it is a result of negligence, it is indeed a matter that should be addressed due to its sinful nature. Continue advising your mother with patience and softness, emphasising the importance of conserving resources. However, it’s crucial to consider the possibility that her behaviour is most likely influenced by Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD). If this is the case, it could be beyond her control and we would advise seeking help from a Muslim professional trained to deal with OCD cases.

Concerning her inability to recite the Qur’an and her apparent reluctance to attend classes, it’s possible that embarrassment or other factors may be hindering her as is commonly the case with older people. In such cases, perhaps you could consider teaching her at home.

Understandably, you may sometimes feel frustrated, but remember not to give up on your mother. Your efforts to guide and correct her actions are commendable, and you are rewarded for your sincere attempts. Continue to approach the situation with patience and understanding, you will insha’Allah see positive changes.

May Allah ease your concerns and guide your mother towards what benefits her in this life and the hereafter.

Answered by:
Ifta Research Fellow

Checked & Approved by:
Mufti Abdul Rahman Mangera
Mufti Zubair Patel