Letters to Wo

- what do you think?

As an atheist, will my Christian girlfriend’s values prove an impossible problem?

For most of the time we have been together my girlfriend’s religious beliefs have not been a problem. She rarely went to church unless she was back home with her family and she didn’t preach. Now we are getting married though it seems to have changed her. For example, she has made me promise we will raise our children in her church and give them strict moral values. Then she has started talking about a period of celibacy before our marriage in order to make things feel special. She is also hinting that I drink too much and shouldn’t take any drugs. She also wants me to come along to the church to meet the vicar (or is it a priest?) and to attend several services. I can see where this is heading. She wants me to become a full blown convert too, and that is not happening!

Wo says: It is clear that you are about to engage in a battle of wills about the shape of your married life. In many ways it is better to get these discussions out in the open before you are actually married. That way, nobody can claim later that they didn’t know what the deal was. It sounds as if there are some things you are happy to concede (your children being brought up in the ways of her church) and some things you are nervous about (limits to sex, drugs and alcohol). Clear yourselves some quality time together away from distractions and talk all of this through. I am sure that, if you love each other, a middle way can be found.

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