shanrock18 (shanrock18) wrote in interfaithunion,

I NEED RELATIONSHIP HELP PLEASE!!! (Im a chritian dating an agnostic)

Hi!  I saw this online community and other peoples stories of how they are navigating this tough situation and figured i should should try to get on here and see if anyone could help me, honestly i dont really know where to turn.  My boyfriend and i have been dating for almost 4 years and we both feel that we want to be with eachother for the rest of our lives and we love eachother very much.  Financially though we arn't ready for marriage, I don't even have to money to move in with him yet.  And the problem is that he feels because we have reached the commitment level of marriage we should have sex.  I want to wait since im christian, he understands this but at the same time he doesnt because of his beliefs and they way he was raised, he sees marriage as just the legal side and i of course see it a commitment to God as well.  I also believe that there is a good reason for that rule, even if remains not completely seen because i have faith.  But this whole concept is not clear to him because of his past.  Now because ive said no he feels like i don't love him as much as he loves me.  I told him thats not true at all and he still doesn't believe me.  From what he knows sex is the only way to show that so i don't know how to show him I love him that much without compromising my beliefs. What should I do to get him to believe me?
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If he doesn't understand, I'm not sure you can "get him" to believe you. Making other people believe things isn't something anybody can do. And if he really thinks that his "love" means he gets to pressure you to have sex when you don't want to, for any reason at all, religious or not, then there's something not at all right with his take on things, frankly. It's the most basic bit of relationship advice ever. One party doesn't get to pressure the other to consent to doing something they're uncomfortable with doing. It means that my husband didn't get to pressure me to have sex before we got married. It also means that I didn't (and don't) get to pressure him to convert.

It might help if you put it to him in those terms. His insisting that if you really loved him, you'd have sex with him, is pretty much on par with you insisting that if he really loved you, he'd join your faith. Neither one would be right.

But it might not help. People don't change their minds easily about things like that. If it doesn't, then you're going to have to choose between your faith and him. Some interfaith relationships work wonderfully, but some don't, and if he thinks it's okay to pressure you to break with your faith for his sake, this one might not.
thanks for your input but i can assure hes not pressuring me. hes not just telling me he doesnt think i love him that much to get me to do it, he really beileves i dont. I know because he has self esstem issues. also he has held it together for almost 4 years and hes had other girls offer so i know its not all about sex for him. if i give the impression i am pressured its because im having an internal struggle unrelated to what he says about sex. Ive been very sheltered my whole life so it was always very easy for me to say im not going to be tempted to have sex but now ive found someone i love and its not as easy as it used to be. unfortunatly ive probably given him that vib too so its probably confusing for him.
Have you sat down and told him all this? You say it's probably confusing for him, but why would you struggling be confusing?
Because my faith in unproven laws of an unproven God doesn't make any sence to him. He thinks if i want to do it i should do it.
Well I really have no more advice for you then. If you've genuinely talked this out, and explained everything to him, and he still doesn't understand, I can't see what else to do. When there's such a vast gap, that he can't even grasp the idea of faith mattering to you, I'm not sure it can be bridged. My relationship works because my husband understands even if he doesn't agree. Without understanding I don't know where you can go from there.
If you aren't financially in a position where you could even live together, what does he think would happen if you were to get pregnant? I mean, you could go ahead and get married without changing your living arrangement or anything, since you can't afford it. But a marriage is only one of the things you should make sure to have before bringing a baby into the world, and I'm guessing you wouldn't be comfortable with having an abortion.

When you say you don't want to get married yet because you aren't ready financially, and you don't want to have sex yet because you aren't married, you are making a religious argument about something that's not strictly a religious matter. If getting married was just the legal side (or even just the religious side) of a commitment you are already ready to make, it would be no big deal to just do it. Just get married and stop arguing about it. But marriage to you is about more than just a commitment to God to be faithful to your boyfriend forever (something which requires no money), and you aren't ready for it yet financially. You aren't financially ready for the responsibilities that can come with marriage and sex, such as babies. I think this might be logic your boyfriend could better understand.

Of course, being ready for marriage in an interfaith relationship, or any relationship at all, is about more than just being together for a long time, loving each other very much, and having enough money. You need to have shared values and shared goals. You'll need to agree on, for example, what religious beliefs--if any--you are going to teach to your children. What are you going to teach them about sex before marriage? Do you even both want to have children? And like a million other things related to sharing a life (and maybe children) with one another. A premarital program (my husband and I did Engaged Encounter and liked it) might be valuable in helping you learn how to communicate more effectively about the sex issue and many other things too.
Hes pretty much infertal so hes not worried about the kids thing so coming at it like that wouldnt help unfortunatly. And we have talked about kids with the religious stuff and hes ok with me taking them to church and all that but, im glad you remined me we probably should talk more about the sex before marriage think in regards to kids and im glad you mentioned the premarital program i will deffiantly look into that.
How does he know he is infertile? Has he tried to get someone pregnant before? I know lots of parents who were told by their doctors they weren't ever going to be able to have kids...
No hes gone into the doctor for other personal reasons and thats what they told him. I don't want to say the whole story because hes pretty beat about it, its another thing that feeds into his self esstem issues. But i know for a fact it has nothing to do with other girls. But that is a good point im sure there is still a chance, no matter how small. I think the self esstem issue might be bigger in this than he realizes. When we were talkn about why he felt i didnt love him as much just because i didnt want to have sex he started talking about the time i lost the promise ring he had given me. and believe me i balled when i did, i didnt even sleep that night. And then he brought up how i didnt put the ring he got me on my ring finger but i did put a ring my mom had gotten me on it. And i did feel bad for doing this but the reason for it was I have all different sized fingers for some reason and his fit on my other finger and my moms fit on only my ring finger. Plus his ring lookd more like an engagement ring and when he gave it to me he hadn't told me he wanted to be with me forever yet. So he had been thinking these small things meant something much more and i don't know how to get him to stop thinking like that. I understand it because he has been let down alot in his past in very serious ways but, what do i do to change it? Up til now my answer has just been to prove him wrong whenever possible and show him good but with something this serious that i cant compromise on im stuck.
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