Update and some thoughts, couple-issues etc.
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19-06-2011, 04:17 AM
Update and some thoughts, couple-issues etc.
As I have written before, my boyfriend suddenly converted to christianity and got baptized into The New Church - which base their beliefs on Swedenborgs interpretations of the bible and his other writings. (And really, is there no better word for "boyfriend" in English? In Norwegian we use the word "kjæreste", which means something like "the one I hold dearest/beloved", and is used for both sexes. Boyfriend sounds very young, and he is 46 years old, I am 39).

Since his conversion, I have gone through painful circles of self-examination, and we as a couple have had months of agony over this. Of course, it is mainly me that have problems with it, but he has lately finally begun to understand some of my reasons for reacting so strong, and he sees now that he caused the problems for us by not sharing his thoughts when he began doubting his atheism. Things started to get a little better after we got some help from some people in his church. They actually helped him realize how difficult it is for me. My main problem isn't really his belief in god and the spiritual side of it, but the willingness to join a church and live accordingly to the scriptures and rules. I still don't understand how it's possible to pick and choose the parts of the bible that they like and discard the rest (or interpret it to mean something else...), but appearantly this is just "how it is". My boyfriend says that all of this is making him happy and a better person. He has all his life had serious health issues, and is soon to go through a difficult and dangerous surgery again. I think that his need for a religion may spring from this. He says he has no fear of dying, but at least now he knows he is saved... And I want the one I love to feel good and safe, so if this is what he wants and needs, I will stand by him and respect his choices as long as he respects mine and as long as there is love between us. And there is, otherwise this wouldn't be so painful. I have huge fears about his upcoming surgery, but it is necessary, so not doing it is not an option. I'll pray that the surgeons have steady hands and clear minds, and leave god out of it.

Anyway, all this made me really think about everything, including the words I use dayly. I used to burst out things like "oh my god" etc., but now it just feels wrong. I do not believe in a god, so why use words like that? Every time I mindlessly say "my lord"-ish things, I immediately become sad and serious. So I am trying to clean up my language these days, and be more concious about what I say. Does that sound strange?

"Never underestimate how narrow-minded, petty and stupid people can be". Mark Fulton, forum member
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19-06-2011, 04:35 AM (This post was last modified: 19-06-2011 12:16 PM by Thammuz.)
RE: Update and some thoughts, couple-issues etc.
(19-06-2011 04:17 AM)Cubic Bubbles Wrote:  Anyway, all this made me really think about everything, including the words I use dayly. I used to burst out things like "oh my god" etc., but now it just feels wrong. I do not believe in a god, so why use words like that? Every time I mindlessly say "my lord"-ish things, I immediately become sad and serious. So I am trying to clean up my language these days, and be more concious about what I say. Does that sound strange?

I have the same problem. I really hate it when I say things like "jeeesus" or "godzijdank" (thank god). It makes me feel like a complete idiot.


About your partner (let's call him that instead of BF, ok?), I think it needs alot of strength to live with someone that lives by religious rules. I once dumped a really pretty woman for that. If she wasn't so religious, she would have been the perfect woman. I just couldn't stand it in the end. My current girlfriend (she's 25, so I can still use the term Tongue ) is an "I don't care"-atheist too; more of a live and let live type that goes to church when it's yet another marriage or baptism (and gets somewhat pissed for me not tagging along). So even then we have some conflicts, both being atheists.

I'm not saying you should dump him, but I can understand your problems. It would be arrogant to give you relational advice based on a few lines of text. If you want to talk about specifics, we're there for you.

Greetings

"Infinitus est numerus stultorum." (The number of fools is infinite)
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19-06-2011, 06:34 AM
RE: Update and some thoughts, couple-issues etc.
As you've started succeeding in so far, direct communication is important. Definitely work to clean up your own language and prove your stance. You have to keep your views known to him as he has rejected similar views, and no longer holds them strongly. When he upsets you let him know and in time the two of you will settle down with the fighting. This discomfort is an adjustment to the new lives you carry and does not really mean anything bad. It just means you are both reevaluating each other.

I'm someone who avoids religious people in relationships to a serious degree, but I can still understand how it works. The issue for me is that when people start discussing seriously illogical things and not listening to logic I can't see them the same. You've had a long relationship and he's in need so there's no reason to just leave over this. Watch his actions and determine for yourself if his new rules adversely effect more than your image of him. He has changed but that does not mean he is changing others.

Everyone has their own odd beliefs as long as he is not carrying church beliefs beyond personal introspection it will work out. If he's attempting to change the actual dynamics of your household then you have a problem. Is this about him or about everything for him?

I'm not a non believer, I believe in the possibility of anything. I just don't let the actuality of something be determined by a 3rd party.
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19-06-2011, 08:42 AM
RE: Update and some thoughts, couple-issues etc.
Thanks Thammuz and Lilith Pride! Partner is a good word BTW. We´ve been together almost 6 years and have built a life together with my kids and extended family and close friends. And we hardly ever argue, it's just been this awkward, sad and strange since last november. But he IS a really wonderful man, I must not forget that most of what I liked about him in the beginning is still there.

I too wouldn't have started a life together with someone very religious (or even a little), and I used to be convinced that we shared the same thoughts about everything. No, he knows better than forcing his rules on me and the kids, in fact I haven't observed that many rules in practice. I haven't seen or heard him pray, though I don't know what goes on in his mind or on the web-societies he's into. And since he didn't talk to me about his process when it was going on, it's hard to trust that it isn't still evolving. I mean, to the extent of him becoming a fundamentalist. He claims to still believe in science, and doesn't buy the creationist-stuff. He admits that I have good questions about the bible and the purpose of god etc., and he doesn't know what to answer. Sometimes I get the feeling that I am taking this way more serious than he does, it's just that for me - getting baptized into a church system such a huge step.

But at least we're really talking now, I have a feeling that he is really listening to me now. And hopefully we'll be able to get back to the closeness and best friends/lovers-state that we had for many years.

Thanks again! It really means a lot.

"Never underestimate how narrow-minded, petty and stupid people can be". Mark Fulton, forum member
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19-06-2011, 12:22 PM (This post was last modified: 19-06-2011 12:27 PM by Lilith Pride.)
RE: Update and some thoughts, couple-issues etc.
I'm sure he's discussing it with you now, he probably didn't consider his questioning a big deal in the relationship. If the two of you didn't often discuss anti-religious subjects then he may have considered religion something to leave alone.

When you're comfortable in a relationship it's sometimes hard to notice when a change should be mentioned.

He's more likely to have just not realized the need to say it since he's keeping it personal.

I'm not a non believer, I believe in the possibility of anything. I just don't let the actuality of something be determined by a 3rd party.
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