Reality Rewind: Can Interfaith Relationships Work?

by Yvonne Chase on January 22, 2013

interfaithReligion and Raising Children
After overdosing on all of the inauguration festivities, I stepped into the other room to see what everyone else was watching and they were checking out Love & Hip Hop.  In the quick bit I saw, “Jen the Pen” and her rapper boyfriend Consequence were having a conversation about his religion and how it affects raising their son.

Its A Way of Life
She’s Protestant and he’s a devout Muslim; in word and deed.  He fasts regularly, as a matter of fact he was in the middle of the annual Ramadan fast, he prays throughout the day according to Muslim guidelines and he follows the principles of his religion to the letter.  It’s a way of life for him.

A Little Bit of Both
In his mind, their son will be raised as a devout Muslim.  In her mind, she’d like him to have a little bit of both.  He’s not budging and she’s not happy.  To me, shared spiritual and religious beliefs belong on a list of non-negotiables.

Major Point of Discussion
Religion can be a huge factor in relationships especially when you live by the guidelines of your religion.  If Jen and Consequence were Protestant and Muslim in word not deed, there would be no issue. Watching this scene play out made me think about how my beliefs definitely affect whom I date.  I would not date a man who doesn’t share my faith and live it in a similar way.  It’s a major point of discussion with every man I meet and its the reason I say no to many.

Affects So Much of Our Lives
While some couples can intermingle religion, many can’t because religion affects so much of our lives; how we celebrate holidays and birthdays, how we spend our money, how we choose our friends, how we live, what we do/don’t do, where we go/don’t go etc.  When we negotiate what’s not negotiable, we run into problems.

Opposites Attract Then They Attack
Before you move in with someone and start pushing out babies, ask yourself this very important question; could this relationship work for me if we don’t share the same religion.  If the answer is yes, take it slow.  If the answer is no, walk away.  As the old saying goes, birds of a feather flock together and opposites attract then they attack.

Something to think about…

What say you? Can interfaith relationships work? Is religion non-negotiable? Does religion matter to you? What solution do you offer to Jen and Consequence?

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Shah Ross October 24, 2013

I’ve seen interreligious relationships work all the time. In fact, I’ve seen more inter-faith relationships work, than I have seen same-faith relationships work.

It’s not about the faiths, it’s about how the individual approaches them. Not every believer is the same; not every believer seeks to live their life in a traditional, literal interpretation of the Bible. Not every Christian is the same, not every Muslim is the same.

In the meantime, people can go to the exact same church, practice the exact same beliefs down to the interpretation, and still not agree on how to raise kids, pay bills, have sex, etc.

The message should be to find whom you are compatible with, not who one’s religion tells you to be with.

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Laticia March 9, 2017

I’m imesprsed you should think of something like that

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