If you thought there were problems with long distance relationships, then you haven’t encountered interfaith relationships. Wait, or maybe you have. If you’re in an interfaith relationship, then you know how challenging they can be. Maybe you even know the mistakes interfaith couples make.
But I have a feeling that since you’re reading this, you don’t know all of them.
When I started dating my partner, I put our religious differences in the backseat. I didn’t think it would be such an issue. But it was. While it wasn’t a problem between me and my partner, our families had a hard time swallowing it.
But that’s why I’m here. Since I’ve been in an interfaith relationship for over 4 years, I’ve come to see the mistakes we’ve made (and you don’t need to make them).
So, with that said, let’s dive right into things and talk about the 6 mistakes interfaith couples make.
6 Mistakes Interfaith Couples Make
You may be just starting your interfaith relationship or considering entering one.
Either way, you need to know the mistakes to keep an eye out for. Because if you’re not aware of them, you’re doomed to make them.
Ignoring your differences
You and your partner are different. That’s something you just can’t change (and honestly, you don’t need to). Your differences are what brought you two together.
This reminds me of the people who say, “I don’t see color.”
Of course, you see color, and you should. Ignoring the differences between you and your partner is just plain ignorant. There are differences and they need to be acknowledged.
Believing that religion doesn’t matter
Whether you’re a believer or not, religion matters. Listen, I’m agnostic and my partner is also not religious. But religion plays a huge part in our relationship.
Where you come from, the culture you grew up in is based on religion. Do you celebrate Christmas? Hanukah? Ramadan?
Those are all cultural and religious holidays. So, let’s not pretend that religion doesn’t matter on some level because it does.
Failing to discuss concerns before marriage or children
One of the other mistakes interfaith couples make is avoiding the conversation of religion before taking big steps forward in the relationship.
Do you expect your partner to convert? Will you have a religious wedding? How will you raise your children?
Yeah, these aren’t fun questions but they are questions you need to ask you and your partner. Don’t avoid the tough subjects because you’re uncomfortable.
Letting family and friends get in your relationship
Oh god, this is one that I cannot emphasize enough. If there are mistakes interfaith couples make, it’s this one.
While you should tell your family about your relationship and how you want to progress in your relationship, they don’t need to get involved.
Yeah, it’s called boundaries. If you let your family get involved in your relationship, you’re giving the power away. Instead, allow them to give you their opinion when asked, but respectfully draw the line.
Not taking an interest in your partner’s culture and religion
Sometimes when we don’t want another person’s religion in our day-to-day life, we try to suppress it. That’s not the way to do it. You should respect your partner’s religious views and understand how to incorporate it into your life.
This is something that’s important to them, right? Ignoring it or showing no interest in what makes them who they are isn’t being a partner.
If you’re struggling with your partner’s religion, talk about it with your partner.
Giving up what’s important to you
Whether you’re religious or not, it’s important to stay true to who you are.
Do you want to convert? Do you good about this decision? Are you doing it for yourself? If not, then maybe this isn’t the right choice for you to make.
Do you like celebrating certain holidays? You don’t need to give them up. Instead, talk to your partner about it.
Whatever you do, remember that happy interfaith relationships don’t work because people give up what’s important to them. They work because they learn to respect each other’s needs and wishes.
These are some of the 6 mistakes interfaith couples make when in a relationship.
To prevent yourself from making these mistakes, talk to your partner and be open about your feelings. With interfaith relationships (and all relationships), honesty is best.