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Christopherhays

Dating Christians and not telling them I’m an Atheist?

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I’m not dating anyone right now... a girl I like is very Christian, but she’s the kind of girl I think I could settle down with. She’s old fashioned and sweet and really down to earth. My more progressive friends are just annoying to me. They’re mostly loud, slutty, and way too “woke”... maybe I’m part of the problem, but I want an old fashioned wife with a little farm and a no drama. I guess I’m just attracted to the kind of people that tend to be religious... maybe it’s how I was raised. I don’t think I’d mind going to church,  sharing in that community, and being with that girl. I could probably put up with the BS.

 

What do you think? bad idea?

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I wouldn't fake a belief or pretend to be someone you are not in order to get a mate. Long term success with someone who is "very Christian" is nil unless you share the same delusion.

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I suspect there are many women who hold old fashioned values, would enjoy living on a farm and who are not religious.

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48 minutes ago, sdelsolray said:

I suspect there are many women who hold old fashioned values, would enjoy living on a farm and who are not religious.

I've met a few.  Even married one.

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The fact that she is “very Christian” concerns me.  I think my perspective as a member of the Unequally Yoked club may be helpful....

 

I often attend Catholic Mass with my wife. We were both raised Catholic but both ended up in the Church of Christ, where we met.  While I was in the process of deconverting, my wife wanted to start going to a Catholic Church again.  This works much better for me as a non-believer.  The mass is very ritualized and doesn’t include personal witnessing or other hallmarks of fundamentalist churches.  We go in, go through the Mass, then leave.  I enjoy the beauty of this particular church so it’s not unpleasant for me, even though I believe none of the theology.  I remain silent during the Apostles’ Creed.  The sermon (known as a Homily in Catholicism) sometimes contains wisdom and sometimes irritates or amuses me.  I don’t take offense easily.  I expect the priest to be Catholic; don’t bother me none.  I don’t ever go forward to take communion.  I feel no pressure to be anybody other than who I am.  And there’s my main point: that wouldn’t be possible if we attended a fundamentalist church.   If I showed a lack of passion for Jesus, I’d likely come under scrutiny and if my non-belief became known, I’d become a target of a major drive to save my soul.  I couldn’t stay around for that.  And of course if my wife were fundamentalist herself, she’d either have to cope with the thought of me being headed to Hell, or else she’d have to abandon fundamentalism.  One or the other.  Even in my situation, I still worry that my wife’s faith could metastasize into a more virulent form that couldn’t tolerate my unbelief.  
 

So even at its best there’s risk for you in becoming involved with a Christian lady.  And if she really is a fundamentalist, then it doesn’t look good at all.  Unless you’re willing to fully embrace the faith.  
 

I wish you the best. 

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11 hours ago, Christopherhays said:

I’m not dating anyone right now... a girl I like is very Christian, but she’s the kind of girl I think I could settle down with. She’s old fashioned and sweet and really down to earth. My more progressive friends are just annoying to me. They’re mostly loud, slutty, and way too “woke”... maybe I’m part of the problem, but I want an old fashioned wife with a little farm and a no drama. I guess I’m just attracted to the kind of people that tend to be religious... maybe it’s how I was raised. I don’t think I’d mind going to church,  sharing in that community, and being with that girl. I could probably put up with the BS.

 

What do you think? bad idea?

 

I was raised SDA. Never hit it off with any outsiders. Both marriages have been to women I grew up with in the church, who, like me, don't believe any of it anymore. The wives were certain that the church is BS and agnostic about the existence of a god. But they're traditional compared against millennial, "woke" chicks. 😂 We  Gen-Xer's. I suppose that's becoming "traditional" by now. Old, ancient, classic rock like Nirvana. 🤣

 

Seriously, though. You may want to find some girls associated with church who are agnostic or don't necessarily believe, but still hold to traditional thinking in some ways. I'm sure they're out there. Here's a strategy. Date the christian girls and fish around to see if any of them admit their agnosticism. You may sort through and find one that fits your expectations. Or do it the other way. Sort your way through the atheist girls fishing for which one's seem more traditional minded than others. 

 

"You can do it!"

 

 

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I think anything can work as long as all parties are completely open and honest. Honesty is the keystone of a marriage. By the second date I think some casual chat about religion or the lack thereof is warranted. Leading someone on is not a good idea. This works both ways and it is important that the other party understands that you are not going to become a "project" to be converted. Be gentle but firm that this is a non-negotiable. If both of you are cool with that and everything else works out, go for it. But we all change over time and a fundie could change in a direction that no longer works. Of course, anyone can change such that it no longer works — including you. It's always a bit of a gamble.

 

I will add that a relationship often starts out with passion and lust. Passion is what makes you want to be together every waking moment, to want to breathe together, to cling to each other. Lust is what makes you want to get into her pants. Recognizing an attraction that is purely lust can be difficult, and lust fades quickly. Passion recedes over time and other things become more elemental to the relationship. Recognizing the passion is difficult when someone is newly in love. Basic attitudes about life, mutual trust and respect, and shared interests are what takes it forward. It's not that the passion is completely gone; it's that other things become significant. Take this from someone who just celebrated 50 years with the same woman and has no regrets or plans to change.

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My uncle (an open atheist) married a Christian lady. They thought they could make it work by being open, honest and respecting each others views. That worked for a couple of years, until children entered the equation. She wanted them schooled at a Catholic school while he wanted public. She wanted them to go to church and camps, while he wanted them to choose for themselves. She tithed but he didn't. It ended up constant fighting and their marriage was on the brink of divorce when he passed away. 

If you want to have a long term relationship then you need values in common and a clear path you can take together. I don't believe a Christian and an atheist can ever have that. 

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I'll be frank. A 'girl' who is 'very Chistian' is likely to be big trouble if she has a fundamentalist family and church and if she is unlikely to voluntarily change her faith.

Here is a true story that may illustrate what I mean.

A member of my extended family was brought up as a fundamentalist: over the years she lost some of that. A few years ago she joined a fundamentalist church again. She, in addition, is a control freak. For years she nagged her husband, made demands, was never wrong, played secrecy games and more. I watched it happening. Earlier this year she accused him of having an affair (which I don't believe) and set divorce in motion without consultation and refusing to countenance any idea of talking about it (she is always right and never admits that she is wrong).

Soon after setting the divorce in motion she suggested that her husband is not a Christian (he is and he is fully involved in a more liberal church). 

The points I would suggest to you are...

New Testament Scripture only allows (I think) a wife to divorce her husband for adultery or if he was/is an unbeliever who doesn't repent. She had no proof of adultery and the second reason is invalid. (Don't forget the scripture that speaks of believers being unequally yoked with believers.) I suspect that my family member is being influenced by her fundamentalist church and that they are encouraging the divorce, providing (false) ammunition against her husband. I don't think she is capable of working out the unbeliever' grounds for herself.

Of course I could be wrong.

So, if you link up with this person you'd better engage your brain as well as your heart. I suspect that she is unlikely to change - perhaps she will get more involved. And you are unlikely to take on her extremism, I guess?

I hope life works out well for you: perhaps a little more patience?

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2 hours ago, nontheistpilgrim said:

A 'girl' who is 'very Chistian' is likely to be big trouble if she has a fundamentalist family and church

NTP raises a point here that hasn't really been addressed, yet.  When you enter into a relationship with a person, you also enter into relationships with that person's family, circle of friends, work colleagues... pretty much every other person in that person's life.  You may have heard the expression, "You don't marry the girl; you marry into her family."  I've even heard it said, "Don't pick a wife; pick a mother-in-law."  I've gotten around this by dating a lot of foreigners whose families live far away and do not speak much English. 

 

The point is that even if you and the girl are okay with y'all's different beliefs, the rest of her people might not be; and there's likely going to be hella pressure brought to bear, on her especially, over it.  It's good to think that you are strong enough to handle it; but do you really want her to have to handle it, and from her own kinfolk, to boot?

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@Christopherhays,

 

I too am more comfortable with "traditional" family life and sometimes feel that marriages are either that or an "ultra-modern" situation with a minimalist (Sorry, @DanForsman :P) household, " open", "I don't cook or do laundry!" marriage where one partner would  rather picket the local GOP headquarters than assist with yard-work. Not true I'm finding - a bit too late.

 

I should point out, at this point, that Mrs. MOHO is a fine partner who is always there for me and I for her. However, early on, when she made it clear she only dated Christians I had no clue what that entailed. I figured going to church once/month, as she was doing at that point, and having a diverse collection of friends. The day we landed in Roseburg, OR she found the local right-wing chapter of the Westborough Baptist Church of the Pacific Northwest. Yes, I'm exaggerating but it feels like that sometimes. Anyway she went off the deep end and is never coming back. She lacks formal education beyond the 10th grade and possesses a complete disdain for too much learning beyond what pastor asshat recommends.

 

It is highly unlikely that divorce is even a remote possibility but that is because we had 15 or so years on the books before I came out. I am of the firm belief that had I proclaimed my atheism after 5 years we would not now be married. I also hold that had I really known Christianity, especially the fundamentalist variety, for what it is 20+ years ago there would never even have been the first date. Looking back I would have made very different decisions then (hind-sight is 20/20, eh?) and I would be happier today.

 

Do not get involved with someone who's basic belief system is so different than yours that tension is a probability. Do not lie to anyone about your lack of belief. I have found that there are plenty of potential partners and friends who are neither fundamentalist or "out there" with the green hair, no interest in home economics, and spending all of their time engaged in radical politics and party party party.

 

Good luck. Don't be in a hurry and keep us updated.

 

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A lot of good advise above.  Be completely open and honest with her, ASAP!

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I think as long as you're clear about things and don't hide things (lying is a bad start to any relationship, even if by omission), yeah maybe. It could work. At the same time I can't help but remember my own attitude towards non-believers when I was very much involved in church. It was always a thing when I liked someone who didn't believe in god, or wasn't in church. Could I convince them to join? Could I save them? Was the person I was developing feelings for going to go to hell? This all caused me a lot of anxiety that I still deal with to this day despite no longer being church involved in any capacity. 

 

If she's very christian she might go through something similar. It's not fair to you or her to have values that don't align in that case. A lot of members here have already talked about this above, it can work. But it's something you're going to have to be prepared to work hard on if that is the case. But my gut reaction is still no, I don't think it's a good idea. 

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My take: Bad idea. Look for someone who isn't religious at all. 

 

Side note: what's a "traditional woman"? If you mean the kind that dotes on you and does "women's work"  at home just call it what it is: a woman who doesn't mind patriarchal values. As for me, I'm pretty happy to be  one of the "woke" and under nobody's yoke 😛

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12 hours ago, knightcore said:

.....I can't help but remember my own attitude towards non-believers when I was very much involved in church. It was always a thing when I liked someone who didn't believe in god, or wasn't in church. Could I convince them to join? Could I save them? Was the person I was developing feelings for going to go to hell? ...

Interesting! You've reminded me of something that has not been with me for over 50 years of happy marriage. But I do distinctly remember travelling on a train with my girlfriend (who bacame my wife) and I quizzed her about whether she was a Christian. I was a fundamentalist and she was fully involved in a more liberal church. Of course, I now think "What an awful cheek, she should have dumped me straightaway". I'm so glad she didn't. The 'confrontation' was not a problem in reality. I only tell this story to add to the point that young people who are 'very Christian' (and who are not open-minded towards other Christians) can be so pig-headed (with apologies to pigs). So honesty and openness are essential I believe.

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On 12/15/2019 at 9:37 PM, TruthSeeker0 said:

 As for me, I'm pretty happy to be  one of the "woke" and under nobody's yoke 😛

 

👍👍👍

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On 12/15/2019 at 4:41 AM, Wertbag said:

My uncle (an open atheist) married a Christian lady. They thought they could make it work by being open, honest and respecting each others views. That worked for a couple of years, until children entered the equation.

 

A VERY GOOD POINT!  Children tend to bring out the engrained values, and can change the game plan.

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On 12/16/2019 at 5:37 AM, TruthSeeker0 said:

My take: Bad idea. Look for someone who isn't religious at all. 

 

Side note: what's a "traditional woman"? If you mean the kind that dotes on you and does "women's work"  at home just call it what it is: a woman who doesn't mind patriarchal values. As for me, I'm pretty happy to be  one of the "woke" and under nobody's yoke 😛

Well I think what he meant was someone pro monogamous family,  without extreme political activism, who accepts as probably true stuff like there are only two genders, there are diferences between men and women, etc, speech is not violence, jokes are just jokes, etc.

 

My take on it. Do not. If sje is very committed than it will be her mission to save/ convert you. 

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18 hours ago, Myrkhoos said:

Well I think what he meant was someone pro monogamous family,  without extreme political activism, who accepts as probably true stuff like there are only two genders, there are diferences between men and women, etc, speech is not violence, jokes are just jokes, etc.

Ha. Not hard to figure out the meaning here. 

 

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3 hours ago, TruthSeeker0 said:

Ha. Not hard to figure out the meaning here. 

Yeah, I reckon he wants an OT following lady, one who is fine with him having sex slaves and concubines on the side. 

A lady who is okay with the slaves working his farm and knows to only beat them unconscious, never to death. 

No, the killing is kept to the weekend date nights when they go hunting witches, sabbath breakers and unruly children. 

Of course his "progressive" friends try to tell him that murdering gays is wrong, but he knows they are just being "woke". 

Or did I misunderstand? 🤪

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What I meant by an “old fashioned girl” is someone who doesn’t take offense at everything. Someone who doesn’t scream inequality when they don’t get a participation trophy... I want someone who doesn’t flaunt their body online and call it “empowerment”. Someone who values loyalty and respect. 

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On 12/18/2019 at 1:03 PM, Wertbag said:

Yeah, I reckon he wants an OT following lady, one who is fine with him having sex slaves and concubines on the side. 

A lady who is okay with the slaves working his farm and knows to only beat them unconscious, never to death. 

No, the killing is kept to the weekend date nights when they go hunting witches, sabbath breakers and unruly children. 

Of course his "progressive" friends try to tell him that murdering gays is wrong, but he knows they are just being "woke". 

Or did I misunderstand? 🤪


this is exactly what I hate. It’s like if people disagree with you they’re automatically bigot, murdering, nazi, slave owners... all my family and friends are religious. It’s been my entire world. I’m smart enough to know the books are outdated and ignorant... but there’s real people in these religions and they’re just trying to get through life the best they can. They’re still good people even if they don’t agree with you and even if they get things wrong. 

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5 hours ago, Christopherhays said:

What I meant by an “old fashioned girl” is someone who doesn’t take offense at everything. Someone who doesn’t scream inequality when they don’t get a participation trophy... I want someone who doesn’t flaunt their body online and call it “empowerment”. Someone who values loyalty and respect. 

  

They are out there. Be patient and you'll find one. I've said before on this forum that community colleges are good places to make connections. Take a class that has some sort of activity or lab, not just a lecture class. Night classes draw a broad spectrum from the community.

 

If I was going to make up a checklist for what to look for, here are some things I’d put on it:

 

1. First, emotional stability. I’d want (and I got) someone who is steady, consistent, and not liable to fly off into extremes of emotion. Sure, we all have the range of emotions, but I’m sure we all know at least one person that has to be approached carefully because he or she might be in a “mood.” In this category is also how this person deals with the tough times.

 

2. A positive outlook. Who wants to be around an Eeyore? Being with someone who re-frames the half-full/half-empty question and says the glass is always full — half air, half water, is much better. Someone who smiles a lot.

 

3. A sense of humor. Hey, ya gotta laugh.

 

4. A reasonable amount of prudence. Good judgment and self-discipline.

 

5. Shared values. There are many ways of being, and many of those are just as right as any other. But the differences between them are important. This is a major issue for many of the folks on this forum. But it’s not just religious or non-religious values. It’s the answer to that elusive question, “What do you want out of life?”

 

6. A positive, fun attitude about sex.

 

7. An ability to love even during times when the partner can’t love back. 

 

Please add to this list.

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8 hours ago, Christopherhays said:

What I meant by an “old fashioned girl” is someone who doesn’t take offense at everything. Someone who doesn’t scream inequality when they don’t get a participation trophy... I want someone who doesn’t flaunt their body online and call it “empowerment”. Someone who values loyalty and respect. 

 

Sounds very reasonable to me. 👍👍

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13 hours ago, Christopherhays said:

this is exactly what I hate. It’s like if people disagree with you they’re automatically bigot, murdering, nazi, slave owners

Yes, the crowd who are offended on behalf of others is a real pain.  Hopefully you can see my post was firmly tongue in cheek, over the top for this very reason.

We had a case of this at work just recently.  A lady who is famous for being very PC, put a complaint about the companies policy of giving people an Xmas gift which included the option of an Xmas ham as well as wine, a gift card or donating the amount.  While no Jews or Muslims had ever voiced a problem with the ham option, she was offended on their behalf saying the practice "othered" them.

So apparently I should miss out on an Xmas ham cos some religions don't agree with it, even when the followers of that religion are moderates with a live and let live mentality.

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