Dating when two people are different religions can be very difficult, but when you are an atheist, dating someone who believes can be extra challenging. Many atheists come to realize that there is no deity because they have studied religion and they have put a lot of thought and energy into the subject. Often atheists are very moral people with not only an understanding of good and bad but they practice at being good members of society. Even though most atheists don’t set out to date Christians, the heart sometimes wants what it wants so here are some tips if you find yourself dating a person of faith.
Don’t try to change their mind about religion – Nothing gets a person to resist and dig in about their own beliefs more than having them challenged. Trying to educate a person of faith is a sure fire way to cause resentment and actually make their beliefs more entrenched.
Be respectful of their religious rituals – You don’t have to participate, but don’t belittle or act superior. This means if they want to pray before eating a meal, you quietly let them. It is okay to be clear that you will not be participate but do let them know you support them in having religious rituals.
Don’t make fun of their beliefs – This applies even with you are with other atheists. This applies even when the person you are dating is not around. If you make fun of their beliefs, it undermines the mutual respect that needs to be part of any relationship. This doesn’t mean you have to agree with what they believe but never say anything that makes fun of what they believe.
Listen when they talk about their religion – When someone believes, it is important to them and they often view their religion as a fundamental part of their life, so they will want to talk about it. You might have a hobby that your partner isn’t interested in, but you would still want them to listen when you talk about it. Listening shows you care about what is important to them.
Respect is mutual – Being in a relationship where two people have fundamentally different viewpoints about religion means both people have to be respectful. If you are following all of the other tips, but find that your partner is preaching to you, disrespecting your beliefs or making fun of your atheism, stop dating that person. Though you might want it to work, in the long run if both people can’t show respect to each other, you will eventually have a relationship filled with anger and resentment, so it is better to walk away if respect is not reciprocated.