Are you crazy? Why would you make your life harder by being with someone outside of your religion? Oh, don’t worry, I’ve heard it all. The only interfaith relationship advice I have is not to do it.
And in some ways those voices were right. Being in an interfaith relationship is hard. But what they don’t know is that it’s also extremely rewarding. In all honesty, I think they’re missing out. Who else can say they get to learn about another culture and religion in such an intimate way? Exactly!
And sure, maybe you’ve read about interfaith relationship advice, but now you’re going to hear it from someone who’s in an interfaith relationship herself. And trust me, that makes a difference.
If you just entered an interfaith relationship, you may not be thinking too much of it. I didn’t think much of it in the beginning. So what if he’s Jewish and I’m Christian – what’s the big deal? It is a big deal whether you’re religious or not.
We tend to overlook how intertwined religion is in our everyday lives. From the holidays we celebrate to our values, religion plays a role. So, when two people from opposing beliefs want to be together, it takes some adjustment.
Good thing you’re here. From this post, you’re going to be given some interfaith relationship advice that can help ease your relationship and overcome the oldest obstacle in the book: religion.
Interfaith Relationship Advice For Interfaith Couples
You’re in an interfaith relationship – now what? Well, there are a couple of things you should talk about with your partner if you want a smooth ride. I know these conversations are awkward, but you deserve to live the life you want.
So, I’m going to share with you some interfaith relationship advice you need to hear.
Put all the cards on the table
You’re in an interfaith relationship, but is that what you really want? Or is your goal to get your partner to convert? You need to be honest with yourself and then put all the cards on the table.
What kind of life do you want to live? Do you accept your partner and their religion? Honesty is key if you want to make this relationship work.
Don’t ignore the differences
Of course, there are differences! How many centuries have people been fighting over religion? Yes, the differences are there – we all see them. But that’s okay.
The point isn’t to ignore the differences and pretend they don’t exist. Instead, step into the differences, explore them, and talk about them with your partner. Because let’s face it, those differences aren’t going anywhere.
Take an interest in your partner’s religion
What do you know about your partner’s religion? Have you taken the time to learn about it?
This isn’t to convert – the point is by showing an interest, you’re showing respect towards your partner’s beliefs. Plus, you’ll get to learn more about who your partner is through this.
Where are the similarities?
Sure, there are many differences between religions, but there are also many similarities. I didn’t know much about Judaism, yet, I soon learned how many things in common it has with Christianity (and it makes sense since Christianity is based on Judaism).
Look at the similarities and positive values that both religions bring forward – you may find they’re not as different as you thought they were.
Talk about the future
This was a hard one for me. The future. While you may not want to think about it, you’ll have to.
One day, you may want to have children – what will you two do? How will you raise your children? What holidays will you celebrate with them? How will you discuss your religions?
Can you and your partner align on this? This is something you need to talk about before taking the next step forward.
Talk to your families
If not, it’s important to involve your families and share with them your beliefs, the events you two want to celebrate, etc. While you’re not seeking your in-laws’ approval, they’re a part of your life. So, why not include them in the journey? Perhaps they will learn something new.
When I first started dating my partner, it was a huge culture shock for me. I didn’t have any experience with Judaism, and I was struggling with my own identity and beliefs.
So, I went to therapy. Well, we went to therapy. And if there’s one thing I can tell you, it helped. It gave me perspective, allowed me to explore my feelings in a safe place, and understand my partner’s point of view.
Relationship problems and solutions go hand-in-hand. And when you’re in an interfaith relationship, you need to talk it out when a problem arises. I hope this interfaith relationship advice helps you and your partner get on the same page.