Post # 1
Let me preface this post by saying that whenever I talk about this with friends, I get very sympathetic words, which is nice of them, but it’s not helping. I’m sort of tired of people pitying me but at the same time I need someone to talk to who will give actual advice.
My parents don’t believe in interfaith marriage and come from a very conservative family/community whom I know for a fact will be very judgemental once I marry my fiance. I am not of the same religion as my parents, so I have never wanted to marry someone of that religion (I know what you’re thinking, then it’s not an “interfaith” marriage, to them however it is because religion for some people is just as much about culture as it is your beliefs. For the sake of focusing on what’s important I won’t mention their faith). I only told my parents I don’t believe in their religion a year ago, and although they were very very upset to hear that, they got over it because no one else “important” knows. Pretty much they pretended I never said it. Im not close at all with my extended family (dont even see them or speak to them, they live VERY far away so it’s been like that my whole life) or anyone in their community, so I personally am fine with letting them talk about my marriage. My parents on the other hand are taking things VERY hard, because by marrying my fiance I am shaming them horribly. A little family history–my dad was physically abusive for most of my life, and very VERY controlling of me and my mom. I don’t know why, I think as part of “getting used to” the abuse and control, I still did everything he wanted and expected me to do til I was well into college (Im 23 now). it took me until last year to speak up and say to him “what you did was abuse us, and I’m still not over it” I didn’t hear from him for 7months after that, which was weird because one of his things he’d get really pissed about would be if I didn’t call him at least every other day. Since we started speaking again he has done a complete 180, I think our time apart really got to him, and i FINALLY felt like I had the dad I wanted all along.. until my fiance proposed of course. I feel so guilty for what I’m about to put him through, because he is so incredibly upset, but then again I’m very much in love and my fiance is absolutely a catch (the EXACT opposite of the husband my dad was to my mom). Anyhow.. We have a venue on a tentative contract for a GREAT deal theyre offering that weekend, and if we don’t decide by this friday we lose it and potentially thousands of dollars, since I don’t know when a deal like this would ever happen again. It’s so complicated I don’t know what to do and all they keep telling me is “if he converts then we will accept him” my dad even said that he wants NOTHING to do with my kids if he doesnt convert! (I’m trying my best not to harp on this statement since he said it during a fight, I don’t really know if he means it). theyre not coming to the wedding, and even my mom–who dont get me wrong i LOVE with all my heart–is defending him and saying that I should be the one to keep reaching out to him since I hurt him. Every time I do I get yelled at!!!! She’s my mom though and usually gives good advice but in this instance I feel like she’s not seeing things at all from my perspective. Anyways, I guess the reason I’m really stressing now is bc of the whole venue thing. Fiance’s opinion is that theyre going to be mad no matter what date we set and theyre not paying for anything or even coming to the wedding so what’s the use. (side note- theyre not coming to the wedding because they believe they are committing a sin if they show their support for what they consider is a sin). What do you guys think? Should I just go for it? or what would you guys do??
Post # 3
I’d have a read of Penn Gilette’s awesome book “God, No! Signs You May Already Be an Athiest.” While you may not be an athiest yourself, it has some excellent insight on dealing with people of other faiths who may not be flat-out trying to convert you, but may be in many ways making you feel unwanted, unloved, outast or disappointing because you dont’ see eye to eye with them when it comes to religion.
My mother is EXTREMELY religious and while I myself was raisd catholic, I’ve not practiced that faith in decades. She had her heart set on a church wedding for me, and while I didn’t get a huge fight over it (honestly I think she’s just glad I’ve met someone to marry and I won’t “die alone” in her words), she still tries to interject the church into our wedding. It takes a LOT of restraint to not get offended or angry when she sends me cards saying she’s having mass said in my name, but having read the book and seen Penn Gilette live, I feel a lot more comfortable with what she’s saying (even if I don’t agree with it, or how she says it). It has made it a lot easier for both of us to talk about religion and our differing views without being hurtful.
This will not solve all your problems but might at least get you to the point where you can have a productive conversation with your family.
Post # 4
Wow, your parents are being ridiculous! I hate when people are so judgmental.
Your parents are basing love and acceptance on religious beliefs, and I’m sorry (well, not really), but love is not supposed to be so shallow!!!!! Talk about ignoring your boundaries! I’d flip it around on them. They don’t like your interfaith marriage? Well, you/your Fiance don’t like their same-faith marriage! See if they like it when they are judged for such dumb reasons. Do what makes you guys happy, and don’t worry about anyone else’s opinion.
Side note to fishbone: I’m an atheist, anlive love Penn Jillete, but I hated that book lol! Just a whole bunch of rambling and profanity and I kept waifrog for him to get to the point but he never did, lol…. Still love him tho! 😉
Post # 5
I’m a Bill Maher-style atheist (apatheist), so I won’t get into the religious stuff here. Not worth the brain space.
The part that bothers me about your post is this:
“my dad was physically abusive for most of my life, and very VERY controlling of me and my mom. I don’t know why, I think as part of “getting used to” the abuse and control, I still did everything he wanted and expected me to do til I was well into college (Im 23 now). it took me until last year to speak up and say to him “what you did was abuse us, and I’m still not over it”
Your father is abusive. Period. His “180” only lasted a very short while, so it’s pretty safe to say that this is a man who has not, and probably will not, change. I hope he takes you up on that threat to never see his future grandchildren, because he sounds toxic. That’s not something I’d want my own children exposed to.
Do I think you should go ahead and plan your wedding? Of course. It sounds like your Fiance is a positive influence in your life. But on the other hand, I strongly suggest that you seek therapy. Only a therapist who specializes in this kind of abuse can help you navigate this situation.
Post # 6
I say go for it! I think your Fiance has the right idea. They are going to be upset regardless.
Post # 7
Wow. That’s a lot to handle. Good for you for standing up to your dad and admitting that he did abuse you and your mom. That takes a lot of strength and I hope you have or are talking to someone about it. It’s a big burden to carry around.
I think that if you feel in your heart that your fiance is the one and that he is willing to support and help you through the rocky relationship between you and your parents then yes, you should plan your wedding. They are going to be upset either way but perhaps if they see how serious you two are about getting a venue and starting to plan they eventually may come around. Big if, but it could happen.
If you are not that religion anymore and do not want to be involved in it then it really is irrelevant what denomination your fiance is. I understand how your parents think the way they do because they are disregarding your feelings on the subject – but stick to your guns girl, you are the master of your own destiny, as they say! 🙂
Post # 8
I agree with LR2012 completely, I couldn’t have said that any better myself.
Post # 9
Yeah. Your dad is STILL trying to control you, by the way. Close your eyes, think about the wedding, and feel what’s going on within. Obviously, your reaction is one of anxiety, because you CARE what your parents think about you, even though they are NOT coming to the wedding as you said.
You’ve got to get rid of that. Also, your parents do not accept your lack of faith, otherwise they wouldn’t be forcing that religion on the kids.
I’m in an interfaith relationship too– I come from a Catholic family (I do not practice, as I am wearing the same shoes you are) and my Darling Husband is Jewish. I had the worst time with his mother in particular being pushy about religion, but that’s not a decision she gets to make. Our kids will be OUR kids. The sooner she gets it, the better. Same with your family too. But you have to make that bit stick.
By the way, since you say your father was abusive, I recommend this book to you: http://www.amazon.com/Adult-Children-Abusive-Parents-Emotionally/dp/0345363884/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1338863133&sr=8-1