Dating, Marriage, and Faithfulness to Church teaching


#1

There's probably a thread on this somewhere, but I couldn't find it.

I met a very nice Catholic girl this summer while I was working on an internship in another city. Now, it's time to go back home, and I need to figure out whether or not I should continue the relationship.

We have a lot in common (professionally, hobbies, attitudes). I happened across some recent pictures of an ex-girlfriend on Facebook a week ago, and it made me realize that one thing I've appreciated about this new girl is that she manages the modesty and purity issues quite well (dresses quite well, doesn't cross any limits when we're alone). One thing we don't have in common, however, is our understanding of our Catholic faith. I am your basic orthodox Catholic who accepts Church teaching. She is the daughter of an ex-nun and doesn't accept Catholic teaching on women priests or contraception. She's pretty close to her mother, so I suspect the emotional attachment alone means there won't be an immediate change on these issues, if ever. We've talked about this a bit; she definitely wants children and hasn't even set any limits. I am worried, however, that when it comes time to raise kids in the Church, we will have some problems. If we can't agree on what the Church is, will we just find that we're having endless arguments about what to tell the kids?

As I've hinted, I've had uncomfortable experiences with some orthodox Catholic women I've dated. They've checked the right doctrinal boxes, but it doesn't seem to translate into practice. I'm very tempted to try the long distance relationship, but what am I missing? I've known couples where everything seems fine but then contraception and deciding when to have kids really creates problems. How workable is this issue?


#2

No, this is not a workable situation.

You cannot compromise on these foundational issues and she is not likely to care what the Church teaches now or in the future.

Move on.


#3

[quote="1ke, post:2, topic:207008"]
No, this is not a workable situation.

You cannot compromise on these foundational issues and she is not likely to care what the Church teaches now or in the future.

Move on.

[/quote]

Amen.

There are many fish in the sea.........


#4

OP, I hope you find a wonderful young catholic woman who has the same desire to embrace all Church teachings as you do! From your post, you sound like you have a very good head on your shoulders.

God bless!


#5

I agree with everyone on this issue. This will become a problem later on. So keep on the right track and continue to ask God for guidance. You will definitely find the right one!!:D


#6

Sometimes I wonder how anyone is supposed to find a good Catholic spouse if they pass by all the non-Catholics. I mean, my Catholic fiance dated me, a then Lutheran and I became Catholic after a year of dating him. If he had not given me the chance I wouldn't be where I am today, a very conservative Catholic.

Anyways, I say why not leave the option open? Why not continue talking with her and seeing where it goes? Perhaps she just needs someone to explain to her why the Church is the way it is. I mean, if after you have conversations and she is not open then no, it wouldn't go anywhere, but you don't know unless you talk.

I only say this from my experience as I grew up in a very strict Lutheran household, our type of Lutheranism taught that the Pope was the Anti-Christ, and very anti-Catholic. My dad was devastated when I became Catholic. But now I am Catholic, Pope-loving, and very happy.

Sometimes it pays to give a non-Catholic or lapsed Catholic at least a small shot. :shrug:


#7

[quote="scriblerus, post:1, topic:207008"]
There's probably a thread on this somewhere, but I couldn't find it.

I met a very nice Catholic girl this summer while I was working on an internship in another city. Now, it's time to go back home, and I need to figure out whether or not I should continue the relationship.

We have a lot in common (professionally, hobbies, attitudes). I happened across some recent pictures of an ex-girlfriend on Facebook a week ago, and it made me realize that one thing I've appreciated about this new girl is that she manages the modesty and purity issues quite well (dresses quite well, doesn't cross any limits when we're alone). One thing we don't have in common, however, is our understanding of our Catholic faith. I am your basic orthodox Catholic who accepts Church teaching. She is the daughter of an ex-nun and doesn't accept Catholic teaching on women priests or contraception. She's pretty close to her mother, so I suspect the emotional attachment alone means there won't be an immediate change on these issues, if ever. We've talked about this a bit; she definitely wants children and hasn't even set any limits. I am worried, however, that when it comes time to raise kids in the Church, we will have some problems. If we can't agree on what the Church is, will we just find that we're having endless arguments about what to tell the kids?

As I've hinted, I've had uncomfortable experiences with some orthodox Catholic women I've dated. They've checked the right doctrinal boxes, but it doesn't seem to translate into practice. I'm very tempted to try the long distance relationship, but what am I missing? I've known couples where everything seems fine but then contraception and deciding when to have kids really creates problems. How workable is this issue?

[/quote]

Do you love her?


#8

Thanks to everybody who replied. To the question about love, all I can say is that there is a lot to admire about her, that I really enjoy being with her, and that (unlike with some previous relationships) she respects me for who I am (somebody who is not rich, a bit of a nerd, and is not going to jump into the backseat on the first date).

I think the poster who was a convert gave helpful advice on what to look for--how open is she to your arguments and reasons for accepting Church teaching. Could there be any movement? I have a relative who married a daughter of an ex-priest and that has turned into a very unpleasant situation, mostly because she is pretty emotionally opposed to the Catholic Church (even if she agreed before the wedding to raise the children as Catholics). That is what I really want to avoid.

Thanks also to the other posters who reiterated plain old common sense. It's good to hear it repeated. With these sorts of things, it's important not to delay dealing with real issues for too long, lest you find yourself sucked into more than you bargained for.

Anybody else should feel free to toss in their $0.02 since we won't be getting together again until the weekend.


#9

If you approach dating as "friendship first," which is really the best way to start any relationship, you don't need to have all those worries. Just get to know her, and keep in mind that marriage is a vocation. If God is calling you to marry her, you'll find out in time and these issues will be non-existent. If not, you can still be friends and you might have a positive influence on the way she practices her faith either way. Good luck!


#10

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