Do Religious Differences Really Matter in A Relationship ?

Do Religious Differences Really Matter in A Relationship

Sept 21, 2011 – Do Religious Differences Really Matter in A Relationship ?

While talking with a friend of mine, he stated that he was fine with his partner being a Muslim. He also did not fail to mention a part of the Yoruba culture which states that, “When a man marries a woman, she takes up his beliefs and tradition.”

I still don’t know how I feel about that statement, but in most cases there are scenarios like this: “I have been dating this guy for 4 years and these years with him have been nothing but amazing. He is a Christian & I’m a Muslim. Even though we love each other, I’ve been thinking about the differences in our religions lately & I can’t stop wondering if it’ll affect our relationship later in the future. Do differences in religions really matter in a relationship? Should I be worried?”

I asked a couple of my friends about what they thought of this issue & these are some of the responses I got from them:

Response 1

“I can’t be with someone who doesn’t believe in what I believe in and vice versa. Can two walk together unless they are in agreement? Love is not the beginning and end of relationships.
There are men who abuse their spouses inspite of the great love they have for them. Being able to walk together in agreement is what matters. You can’t love someone you don’t agree with. Na fantasy be dat.”

Response 2

“Yes, I just can’t deal with someone who doesn’t believe in God… I’m not the holiest person…
But it is very important for my bf/husband to be religious. We gotta think of our kids and stuff like that,
and going to church on Sundays is VERY important to me. Not that it makes me holier or anything, but I just think it’s part of being disciplined. If I marry a Muslim, we have to bring our kids up in a Christian way. I don’t mind doing it all by myself, and I won’t become a Muslim for anyone. He doesn’t have to be a Christian for me either, but if we get married our kids MUST go to church.”

“If two people really love each other then no, religion doesn’t matter in the least. Unfortunately, some people can’t look beyond labels.”

Now on relationships & religion differences – as much as I wish that this wasn’t as big of an issue as it is. I think it’s easier to be in a relationship where both parties have different religions only IF these people place less significance on their spirituality than their diversity. But I feel like one’s religion should be a part-and-parcel of who and what the person is, so I do not see how you won’t have problems with your spouse later on if you don’t share that element.

I used to be fine with dating someone that’s not a Christian as long as he is not too religious, but even if I am more into my religion than he is into his, wouldn’t there be a void in the level of closeness of the relationship if we don’t connect on a spiritual level? A friend of mine said the only three things that matter in relationship are Love, Respect and Trust. I do agree with my friend, but I believe a relationship needs more than just that. When it comes to differences in religion, you have to be able to talk about your differences & also accept the fact that the other person feels differently about it. You can love each other, trust and respect each other, but dealing with the differences in your religion is way more than those three factors. So I guess LOVE doesn’t conquer all?

Here is the thing, if I do end up with a Muslim and we can both respect and tolerate each other’s differences, that would be really amazing BUT can we live the rest of our lives being religiously different? Can we engage in our spiritual activities without each other?

Please share your thoughts on this hot issue. Do Religious Differences Really Matter in a relationship???