Should I Change My Faith in Order to Marry My Love?

This subject is often regarded as a controversial and emotive one, and I feel that each case is very different. Relationships are a process of two individuals caring enough to find a common ground for it to work and develop. Faith can be an important part of uniting the relationship and enhancing the connection, but it takes time and interest.
In truth when we first meet someone and there is a strong interest and chemistry that attraction is based on everything about that person. Okay, looks and appearance factor in. But the person’s energy, aura, persona are also an important part of those feelings. Faith also factors into how a person lives their life. Their standards, values and beliefs will be part of the initial connection that is made between two people.
A lot of people are not necessarily religious. Many of us are good people who do not go to Church on a regular basis. We have our own code of ethics and morality, but it does not necessarily subscribe to any specific faith or religion. We often follow common philosophies of behaving towards others as we would like to be treated, being kind and considerate towards people and being respectful. Many people have a moral compass and feel it important to live by.
So when we meet someone, form a close bond and then love grows we can feel drawn to be more and more a part of that person’s life. We are attracted to many of the things that matter to them. In a religious person their faith and beliefs often form a strong part of their philosophy on life. If their whole family follows the faith they may be likely to have certain outlooks, rituals and practices that are important to them all. Being attracted to someone who has those commitments can be both fascinating and compelling.
We may start by being interested in learning more about the areas that are of especial importance to them. When we grow to love someone and appreciate how important their faith is to them we may well want to know more about something that is so much a part of them, of their family, maybe of their heritage and what they feel strongly about. It may then become apparent that to take the relationship to the next stage requires us to change to their faith.
Sometimes though it can be too easy to get swept along by the emotion and not fully appreciate the implications on converting to a new faith and leaving behind ones old, long-standing ways of thinking. Family and friends may appreciate the dangers more. But tact and diplomacy can be required to convey those concerns. Problems can then start to escalate if one person feels pressurised either by their partner or their partner’s family.
The practical side of converting to another religion can be tough on both people in a relationship. Classes and exercises can be time-consuming and draining. Family pressures may factor from both sides of the family. Sometimes neither family is pleased about the decision to convert. One side may be wary of the implications of their offspring being drawn into a new faith, how will that affect their family relationship, what will be the long-term implications? Will they become estranged from their family? The other side may not welcome a new convert. They may feel unhappy about their reasons for joining their faith, which may be more about the relationship and less about the religion. Sometimes this situation can cause division between families if the situation becomes too emotive.
But ultimately, if both people in the relationship are sensitive to each other, appreciate the effort that is being made by both parties, the future can bring about sharing a full life together. A jointly shared faith can mean that many family events can bring an extra dimension of fulfillment. Festivals and holy days can be enjoyed by both and their meanings fully understood and shared. And sharing these events makes for an easier life for both parties. There is less tension when both are involved together.
Shared faith can provide a structure to a person’s life, something to be part of, to celebrate together. Sharing the same moral values can provide strength and family values, a strong sense of being looked after within the faith and within the extended family unit.