My advice is to become an atheist. That solves the problem quite easily, and opens up a whole world of dating possibilities and allows you to. Need advice from a humanist perspective? Send your My question is: When should I bring that up with people I'm dating, or hoping to date? if it's no problem, or that he/she is also an atheist (or agnostic, humanist, etc.). As an atheist, he has no problem with pre-marital sex, and as things got more I would appreciate anyone's advice because I am at a loss.
That's the key information that's missing from the OP: Do you know them? Have you talked about this at all?
I ask again, do you love this girl? If the answer is yes, then that is the only answer you should need. Why do people think love is all that matters? I personally don't believe in love as it is just a complex mixture of emotions. I don't know her thoughts, but usually atheist have no problem in general when dating, it's just marriage is the problem i'm not sure she will be think about marriage.
And looking back, I don't think I would have deconverted while I was dating my high school atheist sweetheart. At that time someone pointed out to me the bad things the bible says about women, and I had flippantly excused it with "Oh, that's only The Old Testament. I did change my mind later, but that was only because it was something I came to slowly, and independently, through a love of skepticism and evaluation and not until I was single.
I changed not because of who I was with, but because I chose to follow the facts and they slowly led me to disbelief. I don't think my story is all that typical of theists. After all, most of the theists I know are still theists. There are always those alcoholics who independently decide to kick the habit and cure themselves. There are those religious people who slowly realize that their faith is based on nothing.
But it shouldn't be your job to sacrifice yourself on the unlikely chance that they will spontaneously change themselves, or that you can be the one to "fix" them. It likely won't happen. That spark and desire for change has to come within, and there's nothing you can do to put that into someone else's brain.
As another example, Russell and I took a premarital class to waive a marriage license fee, and in it the director gave a story about how on his honeymoon he flipped out and punched through the glovebox of the car. A scary story by itself, but then he then he continued that kind of behavior for 9 more years before finally figuring out that was unacceptable.
He slowly realized he needed to change, and turned himself around. I'm glad that he had that self-realization, but would you have wanted his partner to have stayed through that for 9 years on the hope that he would change?
Do you think that there was anything this woman could have said to make him re-evaluate his behavior, or would he just have ignored her?
The truth is that something clicked in his head on its own, and he self-motivated his own change. A good method for self-evaluation is to pretend that a friend is in a similar situation, and ask yourself how you would give them advice. In my opinion, they shouldn't have stayed together. Take a step back and look at your relationship as if you were looking at a friend in a similar situation: Can they be happy together if they stayed the same, for years and years?
If you can't accept them for how they are now, then you need to re-look your standards or re-look your relationship.
Can Deconversion Attempts Be Acceptable? I would like to point out a mitigating factor, even though I worry that it might just add confusion and false hope. Many people who are stuck in religion are there only because they've never been presented with contrary views or information.
Their religion is treated with some sort of reverence that shields it against scrutiny, and they might be simply ignorant about their own faith.
If they are the kind of person who cares about truth and knowledge and logic, then they might just need a bit of nudging in the right direction, and you never know where that nudge might come from. It might be from you, it might be from someone else, it might even be from someone religious. Faith is a Jenga tower, and you can never be sure which block will topple the whole thing down.
In this case, it might be helpful for you to offer advice and arguments about religion and reason. Address concerns and doubts they have. Ask them the tough questions: Let them do their own research and point them in the right direction. Asking questions allows them to think about it themselves, telling them allows them to just shut it out.
And of course, Iron Chariots and TalkOrigins are fantastic guides as well. Most importantly when communicating, evaluate how you have these kinds of discussions.
The Atheist Experience™: Unequally yoked: Advice for atheists in a relationship with a theist
Different ways of approaching a relationship disagreement can lead to vastly different results. If there is accusing, storming out, stonewalling, ignored olive branches or any other number of bad arguments habits, then you need to take a moment to work on your own communication skills. I highly recommend John Gottman's The Relationship Cure, which is all about how to communicate effectively, really in any situation.
Interestingly, one of the best summaries of proper relationship communication techniques I could find quickly was in a section of a wikipedia article about open marriages it's been flagged as inappropriately placed, so enjoy it while it's there. As an atheist now, I frequently feel frustrated that I was a christian so long around so many atheists and skeptics who rarely questioned my faith, but on the other hand, I honestly could not tell you if attacks on my faith would have sped up my deconversion or whether I would have entrenched further.
For example, this incredibly long YouTube series tells the story of a student decoverting after fervent debate with his professor, a guy who I would have chalked up as a lost cause. Meanwhile, as I've already said, I defended biblical subjugation of women with the dumbest argument that I actually believed made sense.
What Are Your Atheist Dating Stories?
I was a pretty hopeless case, and maybe I did benefit in some small way from having my faith prodded a bit when I was younger, but it took years after that. It's always worthwhile to try presenting arguments against religion: Deconversion is a slow, gradual process that frequently requires input from multiple sources.
They might thank you years down the line. That said, I would like to reiterate that it is not your job and not your place to change and fix your partner. It might be possible to point them in the right direction, but if these debates go nowhere, then you really need to accept that this is how they are and this is likely how they will be for a long time.
I've hesitated to give the above advice about how to deconvert a partner because I am worried that it might be used as a sort of grasping at straws for those who are in a relationship with someone who really is stuck. I'd say most people are in the kind of situation where their religious partner is not likely to be swayed.
The majority of Christians I've ever known and discussed religion with are still Christians. And if you think that doesn't apply to your partner, then you're probably deluding yourself. Go ahead and attempt to change their mind, but be prepared for it to fail, and then be prepared to move on. You should not sacrifice yourself and your happiness to try and fix someone who is a lost cause.
What Are Your Atheist Dating Stories? | Guest Contributor | Friendly Atheist | Patheos
When was the last time you watched a romantic movie? They are formulaically based on the fantasy of changing a fundamental flaw in the love interest. That this is so attractive of a fantasy really speaks to how unlikely the chance for change really is. If you've tried to communicate your desire for a change, and that desire has been ignored, then you need to accept that this is a person with their own free will and thoughts and you might never be able to change them. Are you alright with coupling with someone who will have this attitude forever?
Would this permanently leave your relationship more strained than positive? One of the side questions that gets brought up is that of going through the motions, for the sake of the relationship. What Are Your Thoughts? Hehe — It does! ATL-Apostate My wife seriously considered leaving when i finally told her. Then she realized i was still the same guy she married, minus the magic sky daddy.
The last two I met at a weekly hobby meetup. But actually it was pretty good for me to get out of that relationship for other reasons.
Emily Bad luck with Jewish boys. We are both respectful of each other. I laugh when someone in a news story calls one survivor from an accident a miracle and she does not get uptight.
I know that she is trying to be nice and trying to protect me from the sneezing demons! We talk openly about all of those things, but I think the most important question in a relationship is: Do you want to be right and superior, or do you want to be loved? Loved is a hormonal reaction, there is more to a relationship than that. Lifer I think you need to consult the experts before going off and giving your own speech!
Check out this little diddy: All of the usual theist arguments. Zach A devoted homosexual since the third grade, my dating pool is largely diehard theist-free. Perhaps strong, missionary convictions on either side produce the problems. Not live and let live atheism or Christianity lite.
Delphine My boyfriend of 6 years of Catholic.