(Closed) Would you change religions for your fiance? Advice needed.

posted 6 years ago in Relationships
Post # 91
Member
2326 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: January 2015

No I would not! And I wouldn’t expect him to either

Post # 92
Member
2091 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

No…. I am Christian, and no… First, I am not going to change something that is a core part of me for a relationship. I need to be accepted as I am. This does not mean that I am not trying to improve myself as a person; I just am not going to change my hair color, drop to a size 2, start listening to punk rock music, start doing drugs, or having orgies, for the sake of a relationship. It is just not going to happen. I need someone who, to their core, is similar to me. 

Pretending to be like me is not sufficient. Eventually, it will get old. The true person will come out. Either way there will be resentment from both sides. One person will feel that they were lied to the entire time, while the other will feel like they were controlled by the other person. This is why I married a Christian man. I dated Muslim and a Jehovah’s witness (they are also Christian, but many rules and the man I dealt with, like your SO only followed the rules that he wanted when it was convenient like the Muslims that I have dated). I just can’t. I love holidays. Yes, the media and society have commercialized Christmas, etc for the purpose of making money. For me, it means what I chose to believe it means. I also cannot accept being one wife of many. I want to be able to pray with my husband (and we do). Doing a quick search, I found this religion to be puzzling. Any church that judges folks to the point of kicking people out is not for me. God is forgiving, why would the church not be? But, I digress…

I would get rid of him for the lying or of hiding his religion, which he claims to be ever so important to him. What else is he hiding? He hid this for an entire year?! Have you even met his family yet?! He is no where near as perfect as he seems if he cannot be honest about something like this. In fact, he should have been upfront so that he could see what women would be willing to give him a chance anyway. He seems manipulative, waiting until you are in love with him to say this. I wish you well with whatever you decide, but I would run like the wind…

Post # 93
Member
213 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

No. I will not change myself for any human being, much less someone who followed a religion based off segregating human beings based off their genders. I would have to consider the person willing to blidly follow a religion like that.

Post # 94
Member
129 posts
Blushing bee

1. The big issue is that he misled you. If he’ll do it on this, what else would he mislead you about?

2. This is by definition a cult, and though he assures you that you just have to fake it til you’re married, it’s not that simple. Like othees said, if you have kids and divorce,  you may never get to see them (remember Warren Jeffs). 

3. You wouldn’t really be converting bc you don’t actually believe it. Having to just follow the rules will make you bitter down the road.

4. You may be able to leave but if he wouldn’t leave the church for you, even though he doesn’t really believe it (if he did he would follow the rules), what else will he do for this religion? When they want him to give money and if he doesn’t will he risk excommunication then? If you guys want to go on vacay but can’t bc he can’t miss service, will you be ok with that? Will you be ok when they show up at your house? Will you be ok if they demand your kids go to certain schools or can’t do something and your husband will agree bc he can’t disagree?

5. It’s even not just about rules bc we don’t always understand why certain churches practice certain things and so it may not be bad (like maybe they just segregate bc they feel it’s the way it was done in the NT and really has nothing to do with segregation) but the fact that you’re not allowed to interpret the Bible means they can tell you and your family whatever they believe (and if they believe Jesus isn’t God, they’re not Christian and don’t really believe the Bible.) Also, the fact that you can be excommunicated for disagreeing with the minister is SCARY. I feel 100% comfortable talking to my pastor about anything and don’t think I’d be in a church where I couldn’t. 

6. While some interfaith couples succeed, I imagine they’re the exceptions. Many marriages fail due to this. 

7. I just warn again, this is NOT a Christian church, and is nothing like one.io

Post # 95
Member
558 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2014

Not in a million years.

That you describe yourself as a super liberal person/woman’s activist tells me this religion will not mesh well with you. As PP said, it sound super cultish and weird – please avoid it :/

While aside from this issue you might be perfect for each other, this is totally a dealbreaker.

I’m sorry 🙁

Post # 96
Member
186 posts
Blushing bee

Absolutely not. It sounds like if this is REALLY about his parents that he is a bit of a coward. He clearly has no respect for the religion if he thinks you ‘faking it’ is okay. He just doesn’t want to stand up to mommy and daddy. I would be livid. In fact, I’m pretty angry on your behalf right now. Making it sound ‘reasonable’ by just saying ‘oh it’s just for show’ is not okay. I feel like if he really respected you he wouldn’t even ask.

 

Post # 97
Member
3082 posts
Sugar bee

View original reply
jubial:  Since i am not very religious, i would consider it.

However, i am more talking about OK yes, we can get married in the church and raise the kids in that religion. Attend church for holidays and a few other random sundays – this sounds like he is HEAVILY into the religion and it wouldnt just be about giving up a few sundays.

I fear that once you are married he will implement all these other religious rules and be involved in every aspect that you can. You really should talk to him about his expectations if you were to convert.

Post # 98
Member
444 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2015

View original reply
jubial:  You two need to have some serious conversations. If he only follows some of their rules, than even he has an issue with the chruch. It must just feel the need to stay in the chruch community because of his family/friends. But doesn’t just dating you put him at risk for excommunication?

That church sounds like a cult. They believe that no other Christian denomination can bring salvation except for theirs, and that’s a bit too extreme if you ask me. You may want to skim through this as well, a lot of it was upsetting to me, and these are the beliefs of this religion. http://jesus-messiah.com/html/is-jesus-god.html

Post # 99
Member
1146 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

How well can you even know this guy at all if he was able to hide this religion, the (apparently select) practices he follows, and the closeness to the church members from you for all that time? Not well enough to even consider marrying him regardless in my opinion.

The fact he actively kept something that would impact you so much secret from you knowing full well it would affect his future with you is a whole other can of super disrespectful and manipulative worms. And now he’s changed it from being “a huge important part of HIS life” to “oh its really just my parents influence” when Plan A didn’t get him what he wanted? Convenient.

I won’t even touch on how silly it is to pretend to believe in a religion to appease other people (what you’d be doing) and for him to ask you to put on a song and dance to fool people he supposedly loves and respects so much that he can’t go against them in anyway (what he is now doing) because that should be screamingly obvious.

This is marriage were talking here….your life. You will be binding your existence to this man in every way from the superficial (how should we spend Sunday morning honey) to the not so much (how will we raise our kids). Why would you set yourself up for the liklihood of major conflict forever….All hinging on the word of a man who is willing to hide truth from you and flip flop on a dime if he doesn’t get the reaction he wants?

It doesn’t sound to me like he is using this as a recruitment tactic as others have conjectured (all though I know that can and does happen). This simply sounds to me like a weak man who never grew up or learned autonomy outside mommy and daddy yet still wants to have his non-iglesia cake and eat it too. No matter what the details are, partnering with a man with as little backbone as this would be a very poor choice.

Being single again can Def be scary but the above is frankly terrifying. Good for you for breaking for the time being…don’t consider this man again until he’s shown you real change in the form of behavior, not words.

Post # 100
Member
217 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2015

View original reply
jubial:  I believe you answered your own question in your original post. Simply by saying those segregation “rules” outrage you, gives you the answer you’re looking for. 

Your situation is EXACTLY like the one I faced many years ago when I was dating a Jehovah’s Witness. It was the same thing, he hid the fact of his religion from me until I was too emotionally involved to just want to end it and because I grew up in a semi religious household that never stuck with me, I was open to the possibility of learning about his religion and converting. Now, this was before I had any idea of what a Jehovahs witness is and what their religion entailed. 

Before long while we were “studying” together, all these little rules that started to make me feel uncomfortable and annoyed and why he followed one rule but not another really angered me (hypocrisy much?????). I started feeling resentful. Why can’t I just be a good human being, why do I have to be apart of this “religion” for you to be allowed to love me?

he even hid me from his family because our love was forbidden. But this was the only problem we had, so as long as we didn’t talk about it or acknowledge it, our relationship was otherwise perfect. 

Until thoughts of marriage or kids came up and I again became resentful. 

Religion is a very, very big deal. You should NEVER consider changing your beliefs or values for another human being. Trust what your gut and anger is telling you. It’s all red flags to walk away. 

It will only let to more anger and resentment. 

After 3 years I finally was able to move on from that relationship and am now engaged to the man of my dreams who shares every possible belief and value with me. 

Post # 101
Member
605 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2015

There are so many layers to this that I don’t even know how to wrap my mind around it. Let’s just put the whole cult like organization aside and focus on the immediate ramifications of his actions.

He lied to you. For over a year. Repeatedly. Intentionally. And he allowed you to see him as something he is not. That is not love. That’s manipulation. And if you never questioned it, apparently he’s pretty good at lying and hiding. Did you not know he was going to church every week? Have you guys never discussed your future together? You do not know this man like you thought you did. You need to get to know who he really is before you consider marrying him. The very foundation of your relationship is, in fact, a lie.

It’s not even that he is unwilling to stand up for his beliefs. He’s not even willing to define his own beliefs. He’s supposedly doing this because of his parents, not because he feels any personal dedication? Then why is he willing to sacrifice his relationship with you or ask you to sacrifice his your integrity? Again, not love. Manipulation.

For the record, I’m a Christian. My Fiance was raised in a much less devout situation than I was and we had have had to have many honest and frank discussions about what we believe, where we stand, how religion will effect our choices and our parenting, etc. This was done long before we got to the point of engagement because unless we were on the same page, I would not have moved forward in our relationship despite the fact that I love that many with my whole heart and simply cannot imagine spending my life with anyone else.

 

 

Post # 102
Member
1883 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

OP, I don’t like that he hid this from you for a year, and I don’t like that he seems to be wanting you to convert to something he doesn’t even fully believe in himself. I also somehow just don’t believe that the only difference in how women are treated by this religion is by where they are seated… I just don’t know how this can work out.

And I’m coming from the perspective of being a part of an interfaith couple – I am a Jewish woman marrying a Christian man. Neither of us is converting. We talked about it years ago – we are both comfortable with the other’s belief system, we have the same values, neither of us are church or synagogue goers, and we are open to celebrating all the holidays and teaching future children about both religions. Ultimately, your values have to be similar for a marriage to work, and it doesn’t seem like his religion and your values are very compatible.

Post # 103
Member
2890 posts
Sugar bee

What bothers me is that he wasn’t honest about it from the start. I mean, if it’s that important to him to marry within that faith to the point it’s a potential dealbreaker, this should have been part of early conversations about your future together back when you started dating, just like you probably discussed wether or not you wanted to have kids, and the kind of projets you envisioned and wished to accomplish in your future. 

I know I wouldn’t want to convert. I’m Agnostic and so is my fiancé, although we were both confirmed Catholics in our early teens. We could get married in a Catholic church, but we refuse to even consider it because we do not believe anymore, and we feel it would be morally wrong (for us) to pretend to believe in God and to swear to God just so we can marry in a beautiful place or just to please our parents and family. We wanted to stay true to ourselves, and also be respectful of the Catholics’ faith. 

Maybe offer him a legal alternative like signing a contract as common-law partners if no compromises are possible. This way, you will have similar rights and obligations than married couples, he won’t offend his church because he will not marry someone outside the faith, and you won’t have to convert to a faith you do not believe in. However, the real question is wether or not you want to be involved with this man after all this.

Post # 104
Member
104 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

Absolutely not.  And for me that’s really saying something.  I’m Catholic (and a Filipino Catholic at that) and was raised VERY Catholic- Catholic schools, church every Sunday, etc.  Despite that upbringing I am not super religious now and definitely do not agree with everything Catholicism teaches.  However, I have always pictures my wedding in a church with the full religious ceremony, and I have always imagined raising children Catholic as well.  My fiance is actually converting so we can be married in a Catholic church- 100% his choice and I’m grateful for it.

That said, I have always been upfront and honest about my beliefs, and like I said I have never been super involved in the church.  If the church were a HUGE part of my life, it would mean a lot to me to be upfront with anyone I was dating about that at the very beginning of the relationship.  That is where your boyfriend messed up… big time!  I am not going to pick up apart his religion, the segregation thing, etc. because different religions have their reasons for doing things a certain way.  But if he really is as involved in his church as he says, could you live the rest of your life that way?  If you have kids, could you imagine raising them in that church?  If not, you need to re-prioritize. 

Post # 105
Member
2092 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2015

Absolutely not unless you share the same beliefs as him. My Fiance is a Christian and I am an athetist, I rarely tell anyone what I am because in rural bible-thumping midwest it would cause a good deal of uproar. But I know in my hair what I believe and I’m not changing that or bending for anyone. My Fiance loves me for me regardless of my beliefs and vice versa. I think you need to ask yourself, what would you do if things were the other way around. 

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