Atheist with a Muslim girlfriend
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11-10-2015, 08:03 AM
Atheist with a Muslim girlfriend
Hi everybody. So I'm completely new here. I'd like to start off by apologising for jumping straight into asking a question before properly introducing myself or contributing to any other discussion.
However, I am facing quite a difficult recently developed situation and need as much help as I can get.

So me and my girlfriend has been in a relationship for 2,5 years now. We met on the Internet so we were long distance for a long time. But 6 months ago I decided to move and it was the best decision of my life. My girlfriend, who used to be more of a cultural Muslim, a deistic non practicing Muslim I suppose would be the best description. While I'm an atheist.
Ive never really had much of a problem with her beliefs at all since they were extremely minuscule.
Her parents has tried countless of times to push her to become more invested in "her" religion. Start praying, listen to God, confess your sins, follow the quran and all of that good stuff, mind the sarcasm.
However yesterday her auntie died completely out of nowhere. So when she was grieving, we went to her parents house. Whiles she was extremely vulnerable, her parents decided to start talking to her and convincing her to do all of the things previously mentioned.
She completely broke down crying apologising for not following the teachings and promising her dad to start investing in Islam. I was in another room overhearing this which made me feel disgusted with her parents, but also it kind of broke my heart hearing her give in to their bullying. She's now decided to start reading the quran, praying and so on.

Which is where my problem comes in. Because now I know that they can manipulate her into following "her" religion. Before the thought of getting married to her without me having to convert didn't seem like a big issue, since she said herself that she wouldn't let her parents decide on who she could and couldn't marry. Now that I know they can manipulate her, I'm not so sure anymore. Its not just about her religion, I'm worried about compatability now as well. Atheism and deism is one thing, there's not much of a conflict there. Islam is a different story though.

Does anyone have any experience of anything like this? Are there any other implications? Perhaps I'm overreacting?

Any input would be greatly appreciated
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11-10-2015, 09:17 AM
RE: Atheist with a Muslim girlfriend
(11-10-2015 08:03 AM)ponhei9502 Wrote:  Hi everybody. So I'm completely new here. I'd like to start off by apologising for jumping straight into asking a question before properly introducing myself or contributing to any other discussion.
However, I am facing quite a difficult recently developed situation and need as much help as I can get.

So me and my girlfriend has been in a relationship for 2,5 years now. We met on the Internet so we were long distance for a long time. But 6 months ago I decided to move and it was the best decision of my life. My girlfriend, who used to be more of a cultural Muslim, a deistic non practicing Muslim I suppose would be the best description. While I'm an atheist.
Ive never really had much of a problem with her beliefs at all since they were extremely minuscule.
Her parents has tried countless of times to push her to become more invested in "her" religion. Start praying, listen to God, confess your sins, follow the quran and all of that good stuff, mind the sarcasm.
However yesterday her auntie died completely out of nowhere. So when she was grieving, we went to her parents house. Whiles she was extremely vulnerable, her parents decided to start talking to her and convincing her to do all of the things previously mentioned.
She completely broke down crying apologising for not following the teachings and promising her dad to start investing in Islam. I was in another room overhearing this which made me feel disgusted with her parents, but also it kind of broke my heart hearing her give in to their bullying. She's now decided to start reading the quran, praying and so on.

Which is where my problem comes in. Because now I know that they can manipulate her into following "her" religion. Before the thought of getting married to her without me having to convert didn't seem like a big issue, since she said herself that she wouldn't let her parents decide on who she could and couldn't marry. Now that I know they can manipulate her, I'm not so sure anymore. Its not just about her religion, I'm worried about compatability now as well. Atheism and deism is one thing, there's not much of a conflict there. Islam is a different story though.

Does anyone have any experience of anything like this? Are there any other implications? Perhaps I'm overreacting?

Any input would be greatly appreciated

I'd suggest giving it a little time before doing anything; maybe the reality of her casual view of religion will reassert itself.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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12-10-2015, 07:15 AM
RE: Atheist with a Muslim girlfriend
If she is dependent on them for support (financial, housing, tuition,etc) she will (most likely) always do what they request....especially if they are in the same city.

Until she is ready to be independent from her parents and follow her own path, her religious views will be publicly what her parents want. She may doubt and be a non believer/deist in private, but she will continue to go thru the motions that her parents dictate.


A couple questions-
1. what country are you in? We have a global community and depending where you are the answers you get might be a bit different.
2. does her family know that you are atheist?

3. you mentioned it is long distance, how often do you get to be in the same room?

4. are you out on your own? or still dependent on parents?


"Life is a daring adventure or it is nothing"--Helen Keller
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12-10-2015, 07:50 AM
RE: Atheist with a Muslim girlfriend
There are several people who deal with the issue being atheists, while their partners are theists. It is not always an easy path, or an even path as theists can turn more fundamentalist with time. I am with Chas, I don't see an immediate need to get proactive. Bows and Arrows also has some great questions that will help us better understand your situation. Welcome to TTA!
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12-10-2015, 08:02 AM
RE: Atheist with a Muslim girlfriend
It could just be the rawness and vulnerability of losing her aunt and her emotions are easily manipulated at this point. I think whenever there is a death of a loved one, it is easy to try and make sense of things and to want to believe you will see them again in heaven like some religions peddle. It could just be that while she is vulnerable now, with time and processing grief, she will go back to her original views of religion. If she doesn't, I would strongly suggest you reassess if you want to be in a relationship with a devout theist. There are many on this forum who are struggling to stay afloat in their marriages and have differences in opinion as to how to raise their children, which almost always ends in fights and hurt feelings. I know it's hard, but better to know now then be married to this person in the future and have to deal with beliefs/nonbeliefs in marriage. But right now, as others have suggested, I would just give her time to process things and see where she is beliefs-wise once she has time to grieve and process everything.

"Let the waters settle and you will see the moon and stars mirrored in your own being." -Rumi
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12-10-2015, 08:13 AM
RE: Atheist with a Muslim girlfriend
(12-10-2015 07:50 AM)Iñigo Wrote:  There are several people who deal with the issue being atheists, while their partners are theists. It is not always an easy path, or an even path as theists can turn more fundamentalist with time. I am with Chas, I don't see an immediate need to get proactive. Bows and Arrows also has some great questions that will help us better understand your situation. Welcome to TTA!

Yes, I am married to a believer, happily ..our 15th wedding anniversary is this month. Heart

I think there is a list of checkboxes and depending on how many you check off, it can give you an idea of whether or not you can get past the whole difference of religion aspects of a relationship.

are you self supporting?
how big a role does religion play in your life?
how intense is the religion? honor killings, shunning, ex communicate?
how much physical distance?
does the person want to leave?
do you feel the need to be right vs happy?
do you find enjoyment in debating and winning your arguement?
can you walk away from a disagreement and really just move on or does it nag at you if you don't see eye to eye, or make your point?


in my personal situation, my husband believes, but he isn't practicing. It doesn't play a big role in his life. The influences of his family are miles away and he has limited contact with them. He is self sufficient so there isn't any coercion from others implied or otherwise, to sway him. I don't feel the need to win arguements and we don't push each other's buttons intentionally.

Intense religions, with a person who is dependent, surrounded by people who are willing to push because they feel they are 'right', don't stand much chance. Things improve when the person is self sufficient. Because then you have the ability to limit contact and influence.


"Life is a daring adventure or it is nothing"--Helen Keller
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12-10-2015, 07:00 PM
RE: Atheist with a Muslim girlfriend
I'm in a similar situation to you but my wife has decided to dedicate her life to the Christian god and got baptized about 6 months ago. I'm not going to lie, I have good days and bad days dealing with this stuff and what might lie ahead especially since we have a 1.5 year old. This forum is a great outlet to vent and for info from those with more experience with the issue. I am focusing everyday on our shared values and not our belief differences. Good luck to you and welcome!
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12-10-2015, 07:10 PM
RE: Atheist with a Muslim girlfriend
Read the Quoran with her.... I read the Quoran. It has some amazing phrases in it.

It`s first sentence is that you cant question anything that is in it because it is from god...

Then it tells you that the earth is flat............ and you can pritty much figure where things go from there.

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12-10-2015, 11:49 PM
RE: Atheist with a Muslim girlfriend
Promises made in the heat of the moment won't stick. Pretty sure she'll be back to her old self soon. I'd just concentrate on being supportive of her, being there for her. She won't become some horrible person, trust her not to.

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If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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