I’m really not one to post this sort of thing, you know? Blah blah why don’t supermodels fall in love with me and move into my mom’s basement, should I call her, why doesn’t she call me, is it creepy to sacrifice animals for her, that sort of thing. And I’m fully aware that there’s absolutely no answer for this one - it’s a legitimate huge difference in worldview. But, you know, some advice maybe?
Himself and I have been together for almost three years. He lives with me, generally speaking - he’s turned his apartment into an office for his business. I’ve recently built a garage, and I’m “renting” out the apartment above to him for his private getaway, but frankly the way we live would be no different if we were married. (Although I’d hope if we were married he’d do something about his Coke cans. But I digress.)
I think it may matter that I’m four years older than he is - I just turned 28, he’ll be 24 this week. Actually, he’ll be 6, as he’s a leap day baby. So I’m aware that those ages mean completely different things with men and women, and that four years at this point in our lives can be a huge deal. I’m working on moving up in my career, I have a house, mortgage, etc, while he’s still in the first few years of starting a business. There are plenty of other things that divide us that, in other, less healthy relationships, might be a problem - my family has a lot more money than his does, my parents were much, much older than his and so I’ve been to Europe six times, while he’s been west of Tennessee, like, once. He has entirely different attitudes towards money than me (I wish I could just turn all my finances over to him - he really doesn’t understand how you can spend money you don’t have!), we’re both utter slobs, which is stressful, he’s starting his own business which can be a 24/7 kind of thing while I get off at 5:30 most days, etc.
The thing is, none of these things is a problem at all, really.
What is a problem is that he believes in God and I don’t. To clarify, he doesn’t go to church, but he’s a believer (and he’s a Freemason, where it’s kind of a big deal.) I’m an agnostic who doesn’t see the whole thing as having really much bearing on my life.
This still doesn’t really have an effect on our daily lives, except that it’s why he won’t get married. And the older I get, the more I’m feeling I want to marry this guy. But he doesn’t want to have children with a non-believer. He doesn’t think “Well, some people think…” or “What do you think?” is at all an acceptable answer to “Where is Grandpa now?” He doesn’t want to raise kids that don’t believe in God, and he doesn’t want to confuse them because Mommy doesn’t and Daddy does. Really, this isn’t a marriage issue as much as it’s a kids issue, but obviously he doesn’t want to marry anybody he doesn’t want to have kids with.
And I’m all, well, what the hell are you planning to do? Dump me when a church secretary comes around? Which is where we both admit that we’re waiting for the other one to come around to our point of view. And I’ll admit, I’ve always kind of assumed that when he got older, he’d come around. (For his part, he says, "Well, you might have a near-death experience. Why did you think I got you a scooter for Christmas? )
I mean, I just kind of assume that when you have kids, you work that stuff out. I don’t see it being a huge deal, but then of course I wouldn’t, would I? Because the whole point is that it isn’t important to me. I asked him if he wanted us to maybe see a pastor about it or something - my parents’ church just got this really nice pair of married pastors, I like them a lot, I could see talking to one of them. He doesn’t want to, because he says he’s hardly going to change his mind, and obviously this is an issue that’s really important to him. As it should be, if he’s really a believer.
So, I dunno, advice?