Say you find someone who seems amazing in your eyes, but they turn out to be religious; Do you move on or try to work it out?
If you stay and work it out, how do you go about it?
If you move on, why?
Everyone has their deal breakers when it comes to relationships. Depending on each person, how will it effect their feelings, plans, lifestyle, etc. That is the deciding factor if it's worth bending yours or their beliefs for the sake of the relationship.. how strong is the commitment. Just from past experience, I won't let myself feel anything for another person if they are religious.. thats where I draw the line.
Imagine this: You meet someone who seems like a good person, the sex is good, and you are really into each other, and both of you like the same activities. You are cuddling and the news comes on. How would an atheist reconcile having a relationship with someone who you cannot respect because of their intellect and opinions? What if that person is anti LGBT, anti abortion, thinks churches shouldn't pay taxes, thinks religion does mostly good, thinks Orange Nazi Trump is doing a great job, and/or that stories on TV about ghosts and big foot are real? What if that person keeps telling you that they are praying for you so that you can be in heaven together? What if that person wants to hang crosses on the walls? etc etc
I've been in a relationship with a religious woman where it wasn't a problem, we felt no need to convert each other and it was hardly talked about. More recently I started seeing someone that was amazing in my eyes and seemed very well suited but she is very religious, I wanted to try and work it out but she felt that we had no future if we couldn't share the same beliefs.
I've had more problems with partners' superstitions leading to huge dramas like being convinced I was going to leave and live overseas because of a psychic reading, or being accused of having an affair because of a dream. While watching a sunset together I talked about the science of why it was so amazing while my partner was disappointed that I didn't see it as a supernatural sign that the universe was blessing our relationship. It's not a good sign if you're looking at the same thing and each seeing something different!
I think it is better if you have a similar way of looking at life but sometimes that can be hard to find.
Find out more, and try to figure out if you can mutually decide on boundaries. If the relationship does progress to the point that the two of you are thinking about starting a family, come to some agreement about how the children will be raised. IMO, this is where things could break down - I don't see why two adults couldn't happily live together, with one atheist/agnostic, and the other religious (it happens all the time), but it is *really* important to agree on child raising.
Oh, and while you're at it, also talk about money! This is at least as important.
I have encountered this recently and actually don't know what to do. So far as long as there is no talking about religion or trying to get me to believe I am cool. Actually I don't mind discussing religion. He knows my catholic background. But so far we don't even bring it up. I know he reads the bible every day. If he feels it is good for him and helps him be better (he is no angel) then who am I to judge him. Good question by the way.
So I have found that most people who claim to be religious are religious in name only. And when you start asking questions that really matter, and they start thinking for themselves as opposed to regurgitating what they have been told, they come around. Or as I start asking real questions they kick me out...
I'd stay and work on the relationship. Starting with finding out what she believes and why? Then, based on that, asking several questions, and explaining my point of view.
Hopefully, one of us would convince the other.
More likely, we'd agree to disagree, and hopefully stay together regardless.
* such as -
Is everything part of God's plan, or do we have free will?
If God knew a thousand years ago who would go to heaven and who would go to hell, why did he make the people who will go to hell?
If God kills children with cancer, why doesn't he kill every serial killer after their third kill?
During the Noah flood, why kill all the animal who hadn't sinned? Why not just strike the humans dead, and leave the animals alone?
I don't think I could do it. Their whole way of looking at the world would be so alien to me and I imagine my ideology would be equally baffling to them. They can take things on faith and I never could. I want facts, I want verifiable proof. I tend to think logically about decisions and I would fear that they wouldn't.
I re-read what I wrote above and it seems so absolutist if you know what I mean. My atheism is central to my life, my being and who I am. I can't imagine having to tamp that down or try to understand a belief system that is based on nonsense. I am currently on the board of our local atheist group and supporting atheism is a huge part of my life right now. I am fully committed to the "cause" and to being the best humanist atheist I can be. I work to put a good face on atheism so that people will see us not as the devil incarnate but as reasonable human beings who care about all people and working to help those in our local community who need help.
I think I may be more anti-theist than I had previously thought. I do believe religion is harmful to individuals and to society. I don't hate believers but I see them as trying to imposing their religious ideology on our government and our laws and I find that intolerable. Our founding fathers understood this very, very well. We are all free to believe what we want to but if we allow one religion to impose their will on our government and our laws, then we open the door to any and all religions requesting the same privilege and that would lead to utter chaos.
I think if I fell in love with a believer at this point in my life, I would have to let them go BECAUSE I love them. I fear that I would be forced to be untrue to myself and possibly cruel, despite my best intentions, in my frustration with such a wide difference in ideology. I wouldn't want to hurt them but I fear that I would not be able to contain my frustration because there would be that whole area in our lives that we could not discuss without difficulty.
I know that sounds very harsh and I'm really wrestling with that right now as I write this. I don't hate believers but I really don't think I could fall in love with one. Does that make me a "bad" person??
First if you are nineteen and think you are in love, so, I doubt that you will take advise that does not support what you believe already. This relationship will eventually fail once the bloom comes off of it; it may take years but, it will. You will both end up trying to convert each other, communication will fail and will loss respect of each other and lose trust in each other.
Try and work it out, if I thought they were amazing in the first place most likely their religious beliefs didn't interfere with whatever it was that made me see them amazing. So focus on whatever they did that made me think theyre amazing instead of their religious beliefs.
I guess it depends on just HOW religious they are. How open they are toward discussion. Personally, every religious person loses a bit of credibility with me because of what I see as a loose grasp on reality. Pat Robertson talking makes my ears bleed...how can you really believe all of that?
Religion should be cherished but not at the expense of humanity. If your religion turns you into a elitist and you become bigoted and racist then you are no longer a humanitarian and should be treated as such. If a partner your attracted to, for what ever reason, turns out to be that inclined, they should be shunned. It would also suggest that they have nasty narcissistic qualities in their personality!
If you love him, you love him. If you get to the point of marriage, then consider this. Marriage is a commitment, and that means hard work. Differing positions on politics or religion can add to the work. If you have kids, kick that work up tenfold because each parent will want to influence their kids to their beliefs. How ok will you be raising a son or daughter as a theist? If you think you can handle it and he's worth it then amen to you sister you have some hard days ahead of you, but he may be worth it.
I would ask a lot of questions to find out just how committed they are to their religious beliefs, and if they are willing to change their mind as I did. If they cling to their beliefs with no willingness to be critical about them, I would not be able to pursue a romantic relationship with them. This actually happened to me recently.