I am curious to some of your opinions/experience dealing with relationships with a semi-religious person. Also, I would like to hear what role you believe religion should play in a relationship, being that one is atheist and one is not.
I have been in a relationship for going on nine months with someone who claims to have a relationship with their “god”, yet does not attend church, but at times feels she is very well committed to religion and connected to her Catholic ways. Our agreement is basically if I don’t make any religious comments, the whole “atheism” conversation is ignored. I sit and contemplate on a daily basis as to how I should go about trying to handle this, whether I should stay or go?
My question/discussion for you all is to get your opinion or past experiences dealing with this type of situation. My main question is if it’s possible for a relationship to work with someone who is somewhat religious, where religion plays no part in my life. Has anyone had success with this sort of events? I feel that in the long run, raising a family would cause major problems being that religion is involved, even though it is to a small extent in her life.
Speaking of doing the math, I've always felt that older men should marry younger women, because women age faster than men.
Seriously, think about it - a man, 40, marries a 20-year old girl, half his age - by the time he's 60, she's 2/3 his age, by 80, 3/4 - see where I'm going with this? If they live long enough, she'll be older than HE is!
My main question is if it’s possible for a relationship to work with someone who is somewhat religious, where religion plays no part in my life. Has anyone had success with this sort of events?
It can work. I have been married for a few years now to... well, my wife, and she is religious. When we first met she used to attend church weekly, and her family is extremely religious.
You need to be able to discuss it without either of you getting mad and just being able to agree to disagree. We talk about it from time to time, but we never get angry at each other or argue. Now, 3 years on, she doesn't go to church at all, still believes but never really talks about it, and respects my right to not believe and to criticize the harm that religion has caused.
I feel that in the long run, raising a family would cause major problems being that religion is involved, even though it is to a small extent in her life.
This is a big deal. This is a topic that you need to discuss if you really think that you want kids with this girl. You cannot avoid this topic. In my case, we luckily both had the same view on raising kids; letting them learn and question as much as possible, teach them how to think not what to think. Religion, in our case will not play any important role in their lives, at least until my mother in law decides to get involved.
But, that is an issue you need to establish ground rules for if you see any future with her, and if you cannot agree on it, then either don't have kids, or find someone else.
Speaking of mother-in-laws, don't get me started --
My son, like father, lacks religious beliefs - his wife, a Mexican-American, is a devout Catholic. Her mother, using a combination of religious fervor and Native-Mexican (Indio) voo-doo, rubbed an unbroken egg all over my first, newly-born grandson, to remove the "evil," then broke and flushed the egg. I wish I could have been there, I would have scrambled and fried it and ate it for breakfast, with just a dash of catsup and maybe a drop of hot sauce.
Wow. Yeah, my mother in-law doesn't do voodoo, but she is Mexican and a very very devout Seventh Day Adventist. So, I am expecting a "baby bible" as the first gift for our first child.
But luckily, my wife and I both agree that we will not allow her to give any religious paraphernalia to our kids.
Well, I'm sure SHE doesn't think of it as voo-doo, that's my own description.
In theory, it can work-- but only if both sides are willing to agree to disagree and to communicate openly without it turning into a battle of wills (or worse). It sounds like your lady friend is thus far unwilling to do either of these things. In fact, it sounds like perhaps it's her way or no way. Whether it's religion or how to manage finances, this attitude does not lay a promising foundation for a lasting (and overall happy) relationship. Best of luck to you.
My ex-wife is Catholic, and there was a little bit of religious friction, but we mostly respected each other. Most important (to me) is the kids became atheist, even though they were exposed much more to religion than atheism. We considered religious schools for them for academic advantages, but got lucky and found a public school that was rather exceptional.
My parents and her parents didn't impose any beliefs on us, which we know can be stressful for some families. So I'd say our differences gave our kids a wider perspective, especially considering how important we felt it was to travel worldwide and learn respectfully from other cultures.
However, I feel so strongly about atheism now that I want relationships where we can talk more freely about groupthink and other worldviews. So perhaps ironically, my family experience with religious differences was positive, but now, after kids, I want a relationship with more intellectual openness and more focus on skepticism and inquiry.