My boyfriend is a Christian and I don't know how to live with it..

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OCB1995's picture
My boyfriend is a Christian and I don't know how to live with it..

Let me start off by saying I'm sorry for the long read.. But I desperately need advice. I'm going to try and explain my situation as fully as I can in hopes someone can help me...

I started dating this guy about 7 months ago.. We immediately hit it off like we'd known each other for years. I'd always known he was a Christian and he always knew I was an Atheist. It was kind of off putting for the both of us but we clicked so well in everything else that we didn't care. Recently though I've started to care more... I have a son with someone else and I want more kids in the future. I don't want to "date around", I'd like to find someone I can spend my life with. I can definitely see him as someone I could marry and have kids with.. but when I started thinking about that I started to think about how we would raise our kids with our differentiating religious beliefs. I feel like raising kids as a certain religion is brain washing.. he doesn't feel the same way. He wants to read them bible stories and take them to church. I don't mind them being exposed to it but I don't want to teach them that either way is the definite truth. I want them to come to their own conclusions with their own minds..He says that he would accept if they didn't want to be Christian but it would make him sad. The same way it makes him sad that I'm not Christian... A few nights ago we got into a really upsetting conversation about all this. He said he'd be a happier person if I was Christian. The thought of me not being able to make him completely happy unless I changed who I am as a person made me extremely upset. He started saying that I was only afraid of Christianity because of my traumatic childhood of abuse from my father who blamed it on God. I know that this trauma gives me an aversion to the topic but it doesn't make me afraid of it. I know deep down in my core that I just do not believe there is a God. He also told me about these experiences he's had with God. He talked in tongues and could understand other people talking in tongues, had visions of seeing God, heard Gods voice, etc. He said "why do you think you met me? God chases you everywhere until you believe." I started getting really freaked out. I ended up running out of his house. I ran straight home but couldn't get in because every door was locked. ( this was at two in the morning and I live with someone else) So I ran to my parents house and they wouldn't answer. My phone was dead and some men had been following me around the neighborhood for a while.. so I decided to go back to his house because I didn't know where else to go. He told me the reason I ran is because he had the "holy spirit" in him and that makes people uncomfortable... I actually ran because im scared of him. I'm scared that he might be crazy. All these experiences he talks about don't sound like God to me. His first "vision" was years ago when he was a drug addict. He overdosed and "saw God" which is what made him turn his life around. I believe that he really sees these things.. but I don't believe they're real... Now, he's an amazing person.. he's treated me better than any guy ever has, he's funny, he's talented, very attractive, hard working, and we have a lot in common. He's shown me things I've never seen before and taught me a lot. He's made me feel things I've never felt before. He's everything I've ever wanted in a man. I've never loved anyone more than him. And he says he feels the same way about me. But can we be happy with each other in a long term relationship? Is he crazy? Does it matter if he is? Crazy people can still love and be loved of course.. But I don't know if I can live with it... I don't know what to do. I don't know if I can get past it and be okay with the way he sees the world.

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Anonymous's picture
Olivia, don't apologize for

Olivia, don't apologize for your OP. That took a lot of guts, imo.

In one word, dump the guy. I know it's harsh and it's not what you want, probably, but dump him. There are tons of guys who would head over heals to have even three seconds with you.

I was a Christian, and I can tell you, if he's a Christian, and he's going out with you, in his church, that is a no-no. It's a sign that he's using you. If he were serious, he'd be dating a Christian. You get me?

I wish you all the best, sweetheart. You deserve a guy who is going to respect you for what YOU think and how you live your life. It's not a matter of who he is, or if he's crazy. What's important is what YOU want. It is your life, and your decision to make. I know you will make the one that is best for you.

David Killens's picture
You love him, and he loves

You love him, and he loves you. That I do not doubt. But from your tale, he dumped a while truckload of guilt and anxiety on you. Is he aware of the pain he caused, does he really care? What are his priorities, god or you first?

Get ready, this won't be the first time you go through this, he is committed to his beliefs and won't let off the gas. Is there any middle ground, where religion is off-topic? Can you not share in the spiritual upbringing of your child(ren)? He can spend a certain amount of time a week giving the child(ren) his side of the story, and you yours. Do you believe he will play fair with those rules? Will there always be tension between the two of you?

Can you truly live with this belief, or will you be faking it?

I feel for you Olivia, and it pains me to hear this tale. I apologize if my questions seems harsh, but these are questions you must face in making your decisions.

Cognostic's picture
Sometimes we fall in love

Sometimes we fall in love with people who just aren't right for us. I would like to make the next comment in a allegory but frankly I can not pull one off the top of my head. So, here is my ole' blunt self.

You need to decide whether or not you are going to change your world view. If the answer is "No" you have a choice. Live with things the way they are or move on.

You need to decide whether or not your boyfriend is going to change his world view. If the answer is "No" you have a choice. Live with things the way they are or move on.

If you choose to live with things the way they are, you are making a conscious choice and you have no right to complain after that or try to change him. You knew what you were doing when you made the choice.

Not making a choice, is just waiting, and waiting is a choice to live with things the way they are. Every day you do not change, every day he does not change, you are just allowing things to continue the way they are. Every day things are allowed to remain the way they are is another day you are not getting what you really want from life.

You can keep what you have behind door number one, or you can trade it in for what's behind door number two. In the absolute worst case scenario, you will have something just as bad behind door number two. But unlike a game show, you can also reject door number two and trade it for doors number three, four, five.... etc... The game only stops when you decide to stop playing.

Good Luck to you,

Mutorc S'yriah's picture
Religion can be a con-job, I

Religion can be a con-job, I think. It works best when someone who does not yet believe, is in a place of anxiety, anguish, despair etc., (and perhaps when in " love"). The religious person / people will promote you as having a terrible a problem, or paint you as in need of help, and offer you the solution - what they will claim is the only solution - their religion. You may get sucked in by emotional need. You may lose track of your rational, sensible thought processes.

As they say, if you do get pulled in by some emotional need, whatever it may be, it is very hard to reverse the process, especially if you go too far, take it seriously, and get well immersed. Will that happen to you, Olivia? Do you want it to? If not, you are at odds with this boyfriend. As others have said, maybe you should break from the guy, to continue your rational journeying through life. Maybe say: "So long and thanks for all the fish".

____________________________________________________________________________________________

"So long and thanks for all the fish" is the title of the fourth book from the "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" tetralogy. Used in a message it is just a humourous way to say goodbye, calling to mind the leaving of the dolphins from Earth saying thanks for the fish they had gotten.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/So_Long,_and_Thanks_for_All_the_Fish
____________________________________________________________________________________________

Mu.

Bob Gander's picture
Quote: " I actually ran

Quote: " I actually ran because im scared of him. I'm scared that he might be crazy. All these experiences he talks about don't sound like God to me. His first "vision" was years ago when he was a drug addict. He overdosed and "saw God" which is what made him turn his life around."

This sounds like something more than just religion. It sounds like mental illness to me. Life is short and you know you don't get a second chance at it. I personally wouldn't waste any more of my precious time on someone who literally scares you. There are plenty of other guys out there.

arakish's picture
The only advice I can give is

The only advice I can give is based upon this part of your OP.

Olivia: "A few nights ago we got into a really upsetting conversation about all this. He said he'd be a happier person if I was Christian. The thought of me not being able to make him completely happy unless I changed who I am as a person made me extremely upset. He started saying that I was only afraid of Christianity because of my traumatic childhood of abuse from my father who blamed it on God. I know that this trauma gives me an aversion to the topic but it doesn't make me afraid of it. I know deep down in my core that I just do not believe there is a God. He also told me about these experiences he's had with God. He talked in tongues and could understand other people talking in tongues, had visions of seeing God, heard Gods voice, etc. He said "why do you think you met me? God chases you everywhere until you believe." I started getting really freaked out. I ended up running out of his house."

Dump that sorry piece of religious filth. You can find better. Much, much better.

I suffered untold amounts of abuse and torture. However, it was from the Church, not me family. When I got married, I was so fortunate to have gotten married to the most beautiful and most intelligent and atheist lady any man could have the privelege of being with. Of course, I am biased.

If your boyfriend's religiosity scared you that much, then it is best to get out of that situation immediately before it continues. He has just shown you he only loves you for the physical intimacy (and is this not sin in his book, unless you ain't doing it) and the possibllity of creating another brainwashed drone. "Resistance is Few-Tile." comes to mind.

Dump him. Get out before it is too late.

rmfr

LogicFTW's picture
@Olivia

@Olivia

But I desperately need advice. I'm going to try and explain my situation as fully as I can in hopes someone can help me

Well I will offer my advice, maybe it will help maybe it won't.

I started dating this guy about 7 months ago..

Sounds like you do not have too much time invested in this person yet. It is wise to figure this out now, rather then later when you invested years with the person. Especially considering your goals to have more children and presumably, the father to stick around and help raise the children in your standard family lay out. (I would not advise raising children by yourself to anyone if they can at all help it.)

I feel like raising kids as a certain religion is brain washing.

I agree, especially if they do not have another equally respected voice telling them how to think for themselves and critically think, I think it is far to big of an ask for any child to have the ability to critically think for themselves in a complex issue like religion at a young age. Hence it being a form of brainwashing the vulnerable.

The same way it makes him sad that I'm not Christian.

It is fine for a partner in life to be sad about various decisions of other people. I deeply love my wife and I think we are amazing together, and would want no other partner in life over her. That said, am I little bit sad she is someone that does not enjoy philosophical conversations? That she does not take part in discussion on these boards? Sure, but that is fine. I still deeply love her and do not want to be without her. Obviously something as large as religion is different, but then it is only as large as you and your husband make it. My mom was essentially atheist, my dad was roman catholic. I am strongly atheist. Even though my dad would at times talk of his religion or take me to church, (although maybe only a dozen times in my first 18 years.) He would ask if I wanted to go to church usually, and I would usually decline unless I felt like I wanted to "grin and bear it" for the sake of my dad being happy.

If he is to the point where he wants you to change as a person for him to be happy enough to spend his life with you, and have kids with you then I feel that is a completely unreasonable ask. There should at least be some sort of compromise, where he comes half way. Just like you cannot expect him to go 100% atheist for you. You have to decide for yourself on your side of the relationship what you are willing to work with. If he comes halfway, (as do you) you may decide that is enough or you may decide no, I need my partner in life to be atheist like myself. That is fine too, although I would suggest you be upfront about it to save everyone time.

If you are scared of this man, I think you need to break things off immediately. You have made no commitments at this point, there is no reason to sit and "work out" why you are afraid of him... Unless you feel you really like this person's other qualities enough that it is worth the effort to try and work out your fears and that your fears may be unreasonable. I personally would err on the side of caution, there is a lot of "fish in the sea" I would continue to, in as safe manner as possible look for a more ideal partner in life then your boyfriend of 7 months.

His "experiences" are all unsubstantiated. You should in no way consider them to be factual or to be evidence of god.
The fact he had as large of a drug problem to overdose, and call himself a drug addict is also a HUGE RED FLAG to me.

He's everything I've ever wanted in a man.

Based on what you wrote here, that is not true. He is catholic, he is unhappy you are not, he obviously wants you to change. It does not sound like he is willing to even come half way. He scared you, and he has a history of drug problems. (I assume since you brought it up, that is not something you want.) And all that is only what you told us.

he's an amazing person.. he's treated me better than any guy ever has, he's funny, he's talented, very attractive, hard working, and we have a lot in common. + He's made me feel things I've never felt before. + I've never loved anyone more than him.

Open yourself to the possibility that, if this person you just met made you feel all that, then someone else could as well, and quite possibly even better than this man.

Is he crazy? Does it matter if he is?

It would certainly matter to me if the person I am choosing out of many to be my life partner is crazy. Crazy (depends on your definition of it I suppose) is a LOT to deal with. I never met anyone that had a loved one they had to place in special care saying the decision to put them there was easy. They probably tried mightily for many years to try and make the "crazy" work and in the end were forced to one last extreme option.

I only know what you wrote, but based on what you wrote I recommend search for another person that can make you feel special and loved and wanted, and wants to be your partner in life and build a family. If he loved you he would be willing to at least come 50% of the way on atheist versus catholic, you are already willing to potentially overlook his history of drug abuse. If he really loved you, you could look for other partners, and if you found none other that makes you feel like this man does, (or better!) then he will be patiently waiting for you to join him after you completed your search.

 
 

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lynn harvey's picture
You need out of this

You need out of this relationship. When I first married my husband, he and I were in different Christian denominations and that put a huge strain on our marriage. (I wasn't submitting to his leadership). I gave in after 7 years and started attending his church. My point is, religion is so important to people. It is probably best to start out with similar beliefs, especially when the children come along. If they are not "saved" this man will live in fear for their souls. If they are, you will hate the brainwashing they receive. There are other men out there. By definition, this one will be determined to help you become a Christian. Even the Bible says to not be unequally yoked, which is taken to mean don't marry outside the faith.

alpha480v's picture
Kind of a tough one but if It

Kind of a tough one but if It was me, I would end the relationship. It most likely won't last. My wife was a weak Christian and I was agnostic when we met and now she is an agnostic with me being an atheist. No way we would have been together all these years had either one of us still been Christian

Grinseed's picture
I lost my brother and his

I lost my brother and his family to a Christadelphian brethren. I have virtually lost contact with him and his wife and my niece and nephew. I am an atheist. I have found out his brethren still pray to redeem my 'lost soul'...I understand I am referred to as "The Brother" and not by name.

Reading the things your boyfriend of seven months has said I can only suggest one thing. End the relationship if you don't believe in his faith. You won't just be struggling with his belief but the belief of his entire congregation and they have more influence over him than you have.

If you respect your own freedom to think and live as you wish, then leave before they start working with him to over rule you.

Sky Pilot's picture
Olivia,

Olivia,

"My boyfriend is a Christian and I don't know how to live with it.."

If you want to be a smart ass about it simply tell him that you did some genealogy research and discovered that several of your fairly recent ancestors were bastards. And because of that you are prohibited for joining the assembly of the Lord.

Deuteronomy 23:2 (KJV) = "2 A bastard shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord; even to his tenth generation shall he not enter into the congregation of the Lord."

Grinseed's picture
Brutal sort of punishment for

Brutal sort of punishment for being born to unmarried parents or a single mum who was raped...what about those people not born to bastardry but who achieve it?

Sky Pilot's picture
Grinseed,

Grinseed,

"Brutal sort of punishment for being born to unmarried parents or a single mum who was raped...what about those people not born to bastardry but who achieve it?"

I think that the writers threw that little gem in to say that no one can belong to the assembly of Yahweh because we all have bastards in our family trees. When you read Yeshua's genealogy in Matthew chapter 1 you will see that he had some in his background, including himself. It's a clever way for the writers to make fun of the fairy tale.

Tin-Man's picture
@Grinseed Re: "what about

@Grinseed Re: "what about those people not born to bastardry but who achieve it?"

Let me tell ya, those born into bastardry simply take their gift for granted. They do not appreciate what they have, because it was simply handed to them on a platter the day they were born. While some of us less fortunate sobs who were not born into bastardry have had to work our asses off to achieve our bastardly status. It was a long hard climb and struggle, but I finally made it. Started out as a lowly asshole, but gradually worked my way up to son-of-a-bitch. Got rather stalled there for a number of years, until I was able to achieve the status of motherfucker. After only a short stay there, though, I caught a lucky break one night during a drug raid at one of the more popular crack houses in the precinct area. And that is when I FINALLY achieved my full Bastard status! Yes, it was a long and difficult road, but it was worth every bit of blood, sweat, and tears that I shed to obtain that goal. I fought long and hard for that title. I earned it. Although, I do admit I am a little upset I have not yet received the free coffee mug that was suppose to part of the achievement award. It's been several years at this point, so I am starting to get just a little suspicious that somebody lied to me about the whole coffee mug thing. Bunch of sorry bastar-.... Oh.... wait..... *scratching chin*....

Grinseed's picture
I feel for you Tin. I am

I feel for you Tin. I am still struggling to get out of 'nice guy' to 'pleasant sometimes' and its a real struggle.

Cognostic's picture
Coffee Mugs, Cookies, Fuck

Coffee Mugs, Cookies, Fuck you are a demanding bitch.... What in the hell will it be next..... you want a frigging medal or something?

Tin-Man's picture
@Cog Re: "What in the hell

@Cog Re: "What in the hell will it be next..... you want a frigging medal or something?"

Well, now that you mention it... I suppose just a coffee mug with a medal on it would suffice. Oh, and a few cookies along with a nice, bold Columbian coffee blend. Other than that, not much else I can thin-.... Oh, wait... And room service. Definitely room service. Ummm... And if it isn't too much trouble, maybe a daily massage. But, really, though, that's about all I nee-... Arrgh! Almost forgot about bacon! Bacon on demand! After all, what is life without bacon? That's all, though. Can't think of anything else right off han-.... Oops. Sorry... I'm afraid I must insist upon chauffeured limousine service for running my daily errands. Just a little quirk of mine. And come to think of it, a personal secretary would probably come in handy. I mean, I certainly cannot be expected to take phone calls and do all my own personal office work, especially when I am out and about in my limo. Soooo.... Yeah, I do believe that should just about cover everythi-.... Aw, dang-it. Nope. Just remembered that a daily cash allowance will be most critical to my plans. No doubt all the good folks here wouldn't mind chipping in on it. Silly me. Can't believe I almost forgot THAT!... *embarrassed face palm*... Okay, that should wrap it up for now. But if I happen to think of anything else, I will certainly let you know..... *briskly rubbing hands together*.... *talking to self*... Really looking forward to the room service. Ahhhhh... Life is good...

Cognostic's picture
I remember when he was just a

I remember when he was just a strip of aluminum foil.

jls618's picture
you've already convinced

you've already convinced yourself that it will not work, and it won't. I've tried dating religious people and I just can't do it. dump him.

Jayson Goodwin's picture
@ Olivia

@ Olivia

So what did you end up doing? The suspense to a post like this kills me wondering what the outcome was.
Whatever you decide, I hope you decide it for yourself first

Cognostic's picture
Shhhh..... She is still

Shhhh..... She is still thinking about it. Ha ha ha ha ha .... People who are not used to change have a hell of a time making changes in their lives.

NameRemovedByMod's picture
Hello Olivia. After reading

Hello Olivia. After reading your post I went out and had a cigarette and a beer. Why? I needed to relax and think about what I wanted to say and how to say it. Your post has many similarities to an experience I had ten years ago and am in a different way still living with my poor choices.

I met a woman ten years ago who was a christian and she knew I was not. She said she was tired of christian men using her and lying to her, and my non belief did not matter to her. But it did and always will. She claims to have died and gone to heaven and then hell. She believes in ghosts and spirits and also that she was abducted by aliens. She talked me into going to church with her and I went along with it. She took my father up to the altar for the laying of hands on him for healing, but he said he actually felt worse afterward,lol! She also spoke in tongues and talked about the blood of christ all of the time. Her god had a plan for me and for her. He cured her of her cancer and even showed her what we would get after we are dead. Tall buildings with 7 stories of gold between each floor, Hoping from planet to planet to show us how he made them all. Colors we can not comprehend. etc.. Crazy things that I would not swallow. So our on again off again relationship ended as she was sleeping around on me with her former pastor, but abstained from sex with me as she claimed she felt she was sinning.

She lied a lot and I caught her in every one of them. Now it get's even crazier, so hold on. I grew some balls and broke it off with her, but she still came back around. So I showed her by going out with other women. She eventually got the message. However I remained friends with her and to her credit she was the only one that was their for me when my dad died last year. I also needed a roommate and let her move in. This was also a mistake as she is selfish, does not do anything around the house, fills up my DVR with religious programs, show about hauntings and ghosts and christian bullshit.

So Olivia I am not the most eloquent writer or speaker, but can tell you one thing and please take my advice...RUN!!!! Find someone else. Opposites do NOT attract! Don't make the mistakes I have made and am still living with because of a bad situation. There is no god given plan. We have to make our own. We are human and I forgive myself for my bad choices. Hold your head up and be strong. it is easy to say, but in the end you will be better off. Trust me. Anyone that makes the claims he did is devious and brain washed like my former girlfriend.

They suspend all logic and when cornered have an answer ready for you as I believe they think this shit out beforehand.

Don't drink the cool aid. You sound like you have some good intuition. Go with your gut! Good luck!

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