Opposites May Attract, But Does It Last? Why I’m A Skeptic Of The ‘Love Conquers All’ Philosophy And Dating Someone Of A Different Faith
I’ve always been oddly fearful of falling madly in love with a man who I am uncompromisingly incompatible with. You know, that crazy kind of love that makes you consider compromising your values and beliefs? The delusional love that makes you think that you can change a person. The passionate kind of love that makes you crazy enough to attempt to settle down with a man who makes it clear that monogamy isn’t his thing or pursue your life-long dream of becoming a devoted mother and wife with a man who doesn’t believe in marriage and hates children. Yeah, that head-over-heels, the-odds-aren’t-in-our-favor-but-we’re-going-to-try-to-make-it-work-anyway kind of love. While those may be the ingredients of what great love stories and Hollywood blockbusters are made of, I want no parts of that kind of story in my own life. When it comes to matters of the heart, my heart in particular, there are some chances that I’m just not willing to take.
I’d rather not be in so deep that I have to choose between the love of my life and my beliefs. I’d rather not have to fight with my future husband about what religion we’re going to raise our children because we practice different faiths. Relationships are difficult enough as it is. Why make them more difficult?
This is exactly why I knew I had to let him go. On paper he was great. He had a great job, a nice car, his own apartment, he was a college graduate. He was so funny; he made me laugh. He was very intellectual; he made me think. We could talk for hours on end. There was just one problem: he was a practicing Muslim and I am a practicing Christian; both of us were very grounded in our beliefs. He believed that this was something that we could work through, I didn’t. I could really begin to feel myself forming an attachment to him and it scared the living daylights out of me. So one day, I worked up the courage to end things. For some reason, I couldn’t find it in me to tell him the real reason why I was pulling away, which was that the mere thought of falling deeply in love with him and the possibility of someday having to choose between my faith and my heart made me feel like I was at the threshold of a panic attack. So instead, I gave him a bogus excuse about wanting to focus on school, my career and not needing any distractions. He of course, read between the lines and expressed his disappointment in my unwillingness to try.
Since then, we ironically seem to run into one another at the most random of places. He always jokes that it’s a sign that we were meant to be and I of course, laugh it off. I think about him every now and then, wondering if I was too hasty in my decision to sever ties, but I always come to the conclusion that I made the right decision. Watching the emotional turmoil that having children and/or being in a serious relationship with a person who has dramatically different beliefs or values can bring only seems to solidify those feelings. Take “Love & Hip Hop’s” Jen The Pen and Consequence for example, the constant tug-of-war over which holidays will be celebrated in their home or what traditions their son will be exposed to, will be a life-long battle, that will either end when one of them decides to convert, simply surrenders to the other or the child becomes of age to make his own decisions. In the end, no matter how it goes, there will eventually be a “winning” party and a “losing” party. While I’m sure there are plenty of couples who are able to find common ground, this is one fight that I simply do not wish to take on.
Have you ever dated a person with different religious beliefs?
Follow Jazmine on Twitter @JazmineDenise.