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Validity of a marriage and rules for khulla


A friend of mine has been married for 7 years. Although we have never discussed each other’s private life but she wanted to share something that is bothering her.
Even after 7 year of marriage, she is a virgin. Her husband has never made sexual advances giving lame excuses such as she is fat (she is not overweight but not size zero either). They live in the same bedroom but have never had any intimacy. His family knows about this, her family knows about this.
She obviously has sexual needs that her husband refuses to fulfill. She wants divorce from him but he refuses to divorce her, her in laws emotionally blackmail her not to take divorce.
I wanted to ask if this marriage is valid in the first place? If it is, how can she take divorce from him? What evidence would be required in court?


Salaamun alaykum.
This question was asked from Ayatullah kashmiri, the representative of Ayatullah Sistani in London:
Qn: A woman’s been married to a man for 7years and he has never touched her because he is not attracted to her, and he is refusing to give her a divorce, he provides her expenses but he has not fulfilled her sexual marital rights in all these years; according to Ayatullah Sistani, can this woman who is being harmed ask for a divorce from a hakim shar'(mujtahid)?

Answer: Yes she can.( we have a voice recording of this answer).

And according to Ayatullah Sistani a man
– who does not provide for his wife
– or is physically incapable of sexual intercourse
– or when the man harrasses the wife, treats her unjustly and does not behave with her kindly as Allah (swt) has ordained;
In the above cases, a woman can refer to the hakim shar’ and he can order the husband to give a divorce and if he refuses, then the hakim shar’ can pronounce the wife as ‘divorced’.

But i would also like to mention, even though i understand your friend has gone through alot and probably tried her best to save her marriage, if there’s any sort of physical, psychological.. problem with either of them which they have never tried to dig into and solve, maybe it would be worth a try.

But in the end it is her choice, she is allowed to take a divorce from.the hakim shar’.
I hope and pray that your friend’ problem gets sorted quickly so she can have a peaceful and happy life inshaAllah.

Zahra Davdani.