In need of advice
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11-09-2017, 06:17 AM
In need of advice
I'm not sure if this is the right section for this but here goes.

So I'm an atheist and always have been (apart from a little dabble in my teens when I joined the church choir, but that was more for the singing than the religion)
Anyway I'm married to a believer, he's from Texas, I'm British. So far our differences when it comes to religion have not been a problem, until now.
We currently live in the UK and my husband is currently interviewing for jobs in thr US, specifically TX and SC.
The other day he decided to drop the bombshell and told me "you know when we move to the US, we'll be in the south so you'll have to believe"
I told him that I do not believe and that he knew that about me from the beginning, he answered with "you will, I do, so you will"

You can see my predicament.
I'm not in the business of offending people or causing unnecessary conflict so of course I am not planning to land in "the south" and start yelling about being an atheist. I'm a live and let live kind of girl. However, i do object to being told what to believe/think. I don't want to cause problems for my husband with his family by being "godless" (my brother in law is a pastor. I know, it just keeps getting better)
I'm genuinely worried about this. I know what christians can be like towards those who choose science over religion and I don't want to put myself in a situation where I have left my family and friends 6000 miles away, only to be hated by everyone in my new home for not believing.
I refuse to be anything other than myself. I honestly don't know what to do.
Your thoughts are much appreciated. X
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11-09-2017, 06:36 AM
RE: In need of advice
It may be best if this were moved to Personal issues and support.

NOTE: Member, Tomasia uses this site to slander other individuals. He then later proclaims it a joke, but not in public.
I will call him a liar and a dog here and now.
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11-09-2017, 06:38 AM
RE: In need of advice
This probably would go better in the Personal Issues and Support forum (where theists can't troll up your thread trying to convert you or denounce you for unbelief, like they will here, all the *glares*). But as long as it's here, I'll take a stab at it.

Two pieces of advice.

First, while atheists are very much a minority in Texas and South Carolina, it's not like they don't exist. That's why God programmers invented the Internet. If you end up moving there, unless you're in the rural back end of nowhere it won't be hard to find some sort of secular meetup and a peer group of like-minded unbelievers for you to hang out with.

Second, it sounds like you've only had a passing exchange or two with your husband about this, and it sounds serious. So sit him down sometime in the next few days for a serious talk and hash it out. Get a clear idea of what he means -- is he just anticipating a conversion, or demanding one, or halfway joking? Draw some clear lines of your own -- perhaps that the only way you'd convert is if you actually came to believe, and that would take evidence rather than relocation. Make it clear that you're NOT okay with being ordered or forced to convert.

And for the record, you being you is not going to cause problems. If anyone has a problem with that, it's them causing a problem, not you.

"If I ignore the alternatives, the only option is God; I ignore them; therefore God." -- The Syllogism of Fail
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11-09-2017, 06:42 AM
RE: In need of advice
I guess your husband doesn't understand that you can't believe something you know is untrue.

It's hard to give advice when one doesn't actually know the people involved, but I think it's clear that you need to talk this out before you leave. Probably he is afraid to face his relatives. I am assuming he didn't attend church in England, so he can't be a truly avid believer himself. Or is he so fixed on a denomination that no other church would do? That would complicate things.

You need to talk until you are comfortable with the situation before you leave.


Moved to the personal support section

[Image: dobie.png]Science is the process we've designed to be responsible for generating our best guess as to what the fuck is going on. Girly Man
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11-09-2017, 07:03 AM
RE: In need of advice
I don't really know how to phrase it but something along the lines of "This isn't a discussion/argument, just no".

I mean feel free to sit down and have a discussion with him about it, and explain to him that whilst you are very much aware that america as a whole is fairly pro-religion, and the south in particular, you as a person don't "have" to do anything. If he wants to go to church or whatever, then that's fine [for him] but that doesn't mean you NEED to.

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11-09-2017, 07:14 AM
RE: In need of advice
If he is more concerned with appearances than your continued honesty, he's got some serious problems.


My advice - and not easy to hear -

He needs an ultimatum. Either he loves who he married, for who she is, or he can go back to looking for his perfect partner....

You're not a " do it yourself" project that needs fixing. You didn't come with the label " some assembly required".

People who get married to someone with the intention of " fixing them" are delusional control freaks.

.......................................

The difference between prayer and masturbation - is when a guy is through masturbating - he has something to show for his efforts.
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11-09-2017, 07:15 AM
RE: In need of advice
Flip the script and ask him if living in the UK required him to be an atheist? The answer is clearly "no." So why is your lack of a belief in a god now a relevant topic with respect to moving?

The South in the US is a different world in a lot of ways. And it is a common assumption that people make that you are a believer in at least some sense. So you will undoubtedly encounter people who will assume you are christian, and also that you will likely encounter those who will actively try to convert you. But I would hope your husband would support you in this. My wife supported me and from seeing how Christians treated me (and atheists in general), she became less and less religious and is now something close to agnostic/atheist (christian treatment of atheists/myself weren't the only thing that drove her away from religion, but it was certainly part).

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11-09-2017, 07:16 AM
RE: In need of advice
Catholic here (and thus wrong type of Christian probably for South Carolina at least), and pardon the language, but fuck that. You're your own person and he can't force you to believe. There's a very good argument to be made that none of us can even choose to believe in something, let alone be forced. I can't flip a switch tomorrow and not believe, nor can you flip a switch tomorrow and go to your husband, "Oh you're right, I totally believe Jesus is the Son of God now."

Yeah, in Texas or South Carolina you'll get people who ask you all what church you go to; it's rude, but it'll probably happen. I'd think if you wanted, you could just say you don't, or don't believe. If not wanting to risk drama, just maybe give the one your husband would go to. However, even without the possibility of moving, I think Reltzik and Dom both hit things on the head really well; you and your husband should probably talk about this in more detail. He can't just order you to convert, nor should he expect it.

Also depending on where you would end up in those places, there would hopefully be, as Reltzik pointed out, some good chances to meet up with others who don't believe. Austin in particular has a rather thriving atheist community.


(11-09-2017 06:38 AM)Reltzik Wrote:  This probably would go better in the Personal Issues and Support forum (where theists can't troll up your thread trying to convert you or denounce you for unbelief, like they will here, all the *glares*).

Yes, because Aliza and I go around trying to convert or denounce all of you all the time. Drinking Beverage Know that's not what you mean, that you were doing broad strokes about the drive by sort.

Need to think of a witty signature.
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11-09-2017, 07:32 AM
RE: In need of advice
Hannah,

This is a tough call. What is happening here is a demand for both a change of continent and a change of deep belief.

For many people, the situation would be a deal breaker. Only you can know in your heart what you will allow. Huh

It is hard to suggest anything in such a situation, but I would advise dealing with it sooner rather than later. The matter is so serious that kitchen table talk likely won't cut it. Maybe the best thing would be a relationship counsellor. If your partner has empathy, then realising that you are prepared to take him to counselling might wake him up. If he doesn't, then I just don't know. Confused

Hope it works out for you.

D.
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11-09-2017, 07:45 AM (This post was last modified: 11-09-2017 07:53 AM by Thoreauvian.)
RE: In need of advice
(11-09-2017 06:17 AM)Hannah1710 Wrote:  The other day he decided to drop the bombshell and told me "you know when we move to the US, we'll be in the south so you'll have to believe"
I told him that I do not believe and that he knew that about me from the beginning, he answered with "you will, I do, so you will"

This advice is easy to give but difficult to take: If "No" is an unacceptable answer to him, and no children are involved, then cut your losses with him as soon as possible and do not move to America. You are in for years of difficulties otherwise, which will likely end the same way.

Since my first marriage failed, I understand in hindsight that I prolonged the torment by trying to making it work for many years. My first wife and I were just too different.
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