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Advice needed! Atheist dating Christian?

I'm very interested in someone and I feel like she is interested in me. I know she comes from a very strong/sheltered Christian upbringing, goes to church every week, went to a Christian college, and posts Bible verses/Christian related things on Instagram.

She doesn't know I'm an atheist. Only because religion hasn't really come up in conversations and I haven't had a reason to say it. I don't want to waste her time if she's looking for a full on Christian guy, but at the same time I really like her. I know it's bound to come up eventually but I don't know if I should do something about it.

Do I wait to tell her when it comes up, or be upfront about it?
Anyone have experience with this type of situation?

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It sounds like her religion is very important to her, and will probably only get involved with someone of her own faith. Best to discuss this now before things get too deep.



If you can respect each other’s position it could work. That being said, the further along you go in the relationship, the more difficult it will become. You may be expected to hide your non-belief around her family. It could wind up being a greater commitment on your part (going to church, praying over meals, etc). If you are ok with that then go for it.

TXAtheist Level 4 Dec 7, 2017

My last wife (yes, there was more than one) was a devout, albeit a hypocritical Christian. At the time, I hadn't accepted Agnosticism yet. But she knew I wasn't a "true" christian, and all was good...until it wasn't. Trust me, get it out in the open, don't give her any expectations that you are flexible, and then still be weary. Because converting you is what christians tend to try to do. Are there exceptions? Sure. But do you really want to take that chance? Forever is a long time.


If your goal in life is to partner up and have children I would think long and hard about these very big differences before your hormones are muddying realities. It's not just the differences between the two of you, but future grandparents etc. that can cause friction. A lot depends on how healthy and adult like everyone is. I would be yourself, and honest when the subject comes up, which shouldn't take long if God is that important to her life. Personally, I would run like hell, but I'm old and don't have time for these struggles.

Arcosanti Level 4 Dec 7, 2017

Perhaps you could find a suitable moment to ask her what she thinks about atheists. Her answer might be all you need to judge whether you want to pursue the relationship or move on.

Joanne Level 6 Dec 7, 2017

I married someone like that for 13 years who didn't even have the courage to at least let me know why she was leaving. I was upfront and honest about it before our marriage. If someone lies to themselves about reality, it doesn't take much to lie you. I'd move on.

mt49er Level 7 Dec 7, 2017

I think you should talk to her about this as soon as possible. Tell her that you are an Atheist and ask her if she has a problem with that.

I had a Muslim boyfriend once and I told him in our first date that I am an Atheist and he didn't have a problem with that but of course everyone is different.

Alexa Level 5 Dec 7, 2017

I feel like this is one of those make-or-break topics, and waiting to discuss your views won't help. If she doesn't share her family's views, she'll probably be happy to know you're not religious. If she's religious and it's important to her that you be too, that's worth knowing up front because it's not going to be less important to her later. The worst case, in my opinion, is that she's religious but doesn't care whether you are or not. I think it will get you into a relationship and ultimately it will still cause problems. I've seen relationships work under these circumstances, but it's exceedingly rare.

resserts Level 8 Dec 7, 2017

If she is into it this deep it is an issue that won't be shoved under the rug.Better talk about it now if you are hoping for more than friendship as things will get tangled more as time progresses

btroje Level 8 Dec 7, 2017



I have found that absolute emotional honesty is an essential ingredient in any successful personal relationship. I once had a Catholic girlfriend for over a year. I would now drop her before I even got emotionally close to her.

Short versoin: I would run like crazy away from her.

irascible Level 8 Dec 7, 2017

First I want you to say two "Hell Marys," and then I want you to say three "Hell NOs!"

Benthoven Level 7 Dec 7, 2017

Bring up the subject as soon as possible. I'm surprised she hasn't brought it up already.

bingst Level 7 Dec 7, 2017

You had better put it out there. The sooner you get the deal breakers out of the way the better...


I was in the same situation with the last gal I dated. I told her up front and things were great; for a while. She never bugged me about it or pushed it on me, but I could tell it weighed on her at times. In the end it was the main reason she broke up with me. I'm not saying this will happen to you, and I hope it doesn't, but like others have stated, honesty is always the best policy. Talk to her about it and let the cards fall where they may. The longer you wait, the worse it may be... Best of luck friend!

This was my story as well.


What is it you are wanting from this relationship? If you want a casual relationship there is no need to disclose anything, but, if you are looking for something more permanent then disclose and try to help her get over her delusions. Be aware though that without he loosing them it will not last.


I have not had any experience with this exact subject, but have had “need to know” experiences when it comes to relationships / dating. My advice is to bring this up first thing. Why build something up further when it could be brought down once out?


Bring it up right away. Be super clear you think religion is a fairytale. Tell her you will never never change. Ask if that is a deal killer! Even then she might think she can get you to change.

I was just down this road. It did not end well!!!!

JohnGlass Level 6 Dec 13, 2017

The problem isn't the difference of opinion, my question is whether I could respect and admire someone who is so resistant to rational thought as to believe in something with the same evidence to support an assertion that has the same evidence for it's truth as unicorns or FSMs.

Gregory Level 4 Dec 8, 2017

I hate to say it ,but it's going to be better to find someone who thinks like you. If you are looking for marriage and children ,know that it is mandatory that All Christians demand that the children be brought up Christian. If you're willing to raise your children as Christians, I would say continue with a relationship and work at it. I personally don't see how it could work, but nothing is impossible

Kojaksmom Level 7 Dec 7, 2017

My husband was Irish catholic. We had 2 kids. I was very forthright about how I would like them raised - atheist, freethinker - and he agreed to let me be the main teacher. So I have to disagree with your assertion.


Depends on how much of the kool aid she has drank. For some, it's just a social thing; for others, there's no compromising. The bible does teach that believers are not to be unequally yoked.

Tread lightly, be honest and up front. Does she play you Georgia Satellite's tune "Keep Your Hands To Yourself"? smile009.gif

Hominid Level 7 Dec 7, 2017

For the relationship to last you must each be true to yourselves and you must communicate openly.

Gary4234 Level 5 Dec 18, 2017

I'd be upfront about it, myself. Some things are deal breakers for people and why invest time in a relationship that may essentially already be doomed to fail eventually. While not related to religion, I recently ended a 14 year marriage in part over things that bothered me in the beginning but I chose to ignore them. There were other factors, but when I look back I wish I had just listened to my gut instinct because now I've dragged 3 other people into a divorce (wife and two children).

I honestly could not be in a serious relationship with someone who was actively practicing any religion. Even if they weren't actively practicing, I still don't know if I could do it. While I do not make a public spectacle of it, I do often laugh at the hypocrisy and blind allegiance of it all. Add to that, many (but certainly not all) religious people have far right views on things and generally don't seem to grasp common sense very well. I could never get along with someone like that.

KevinD872 Level 5 Dec 16, 2017

I appreciate everyone's input very much! I read everyone's comments. I finally brought it up and she actually didn't seem to mind. However, I don't think it's going to work out anyways. Not so much because of the difference of belief, but more so how it affects our personality/actions (her being a little more reserved and me being more open). So it just wasn't clicking as much as I originally thought it would. But hey that's how dating goes lol Thanks again everyone!

Calvin Level 3 Dec 15, 2017

Would you be able to live with the scorn of her family if you get serious as a couple? Would you be able to live with the constant jabs at you "going to hell" or the dirty looks when you decline to go to church with them? Or would you be willing to go to church and pretend to be pious to keep the piece (pun intended)?

You need to discuss your viewpoint with her, and find out how bad your life would be if her family knew you are atheist as well.


At some point, the two of you are going to have a serious talk about what you each want out of life but you don't necessarily know when it'll occur.

Once it does, be honest and upfront about it. You don't know how it'll go and she could even be a closeted non-believer, but unless you're willing to sacrifice some aspect of your person to hide your ideas/follow her beliefs, nothing good will come from avoiding that talk.

Gigante Level 4 Dec 13, 2017

You will both be embarrassed by the others ideas when you are with those that think either of you are right. Her people will think you are evil and will want to pray for you. Once they see you will not change, they will pray that the two of you break up. Your people will think she is nuts.

JohnGlass Level 6 Dec 13, 2017
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