Discussion tonight with my non-Catholic husband!


#1

Hi everyone,
I’ve just stumbled upon this website and hope I can find some answers and prayers. To make a long story short, I am Catholic (born and raised) and I married an amazing, wonderful man who is not a follower of Jesus. We have a beautiful son who is 15 months old.

Before we were married, I made it clear that I will continue to practicing in the Catholic church, and that our children would be raised Catholic. We were married in the Catholic church and our son was baptised. My husband never had any problems with this plan, until the baptism when he started really learning all the “rules.” For example, he thought his sister could be the Godparent but didn’t realize that the Godparents have to be Catholic. Now with all the stories of abuse in the news, and lots of other “issues” that are arising, he is now saying he absolutely doesn’t want our son raised Catholic and wants me to stop bringing him to church.

We’ve been putting off a discussion but are finally talking tonight. I need help and advice. How can I explain to my husband that this is not acceptable to me? I am a very strong willed and confident person, but when it comes to this subject, I can’t find the words to help him understand how painful that would be for me. He has no faith and can only see the negatives of the Catholic church. I don’t want scripture to help prove my points, just a way to communicate and get through to him so that he can realize that going back on his word, and not allowing our son to go to mass with me will be so damaging to our marriage. In all other areas of our marriage we communicate well and compromise, but this is the one subject that neither one of us will bend on and I’m fearful that we won’t be able to find an answer.

I have my own problems and questions of the church, but I need my own time to come to terms with these issues. All prayers are certainly appreciated too.

Thanks so much!


#2

Hey Jen.

The first thing I would do is try to take a step back and talk about what it is you two wanted originally. Try to make it a relaxed conversation, make it positive, and focus on the things that you agreed upon. Since you married this gent, I'm sure you had plenty of discussions where you found common ground about raising children. So, start from that place.

Then I'd suggest kindly, but firmly telling him that even though he may now have issues with what you originally agreed upon, he still made a promise to you, and because of that, he has a responsibility. He may feel like he didn't have all the info before, but to be frank, that's his fault for not doing his homework. It doesn't excuse him of his promise. So mention to him that it's only fair that he give your wishes all due consideration. If he loves you, and if he's a man of his word, I'm sure you can get him to see that it's the right thing to do.


#3

I basically agree with Havard, although I can appreciate that the welfare of your child is more important that being a man of your word. A couple of things to make things clear to him:

-A Godparent is someone whose job it is to raise a child in the faith. How could a non-Catholic do that? If his sister in law is Christian, she could still be a Christian Witness, as long as their is at least a Catholic Godfather.

-Does he understand that the Godparent is not the same thing as the guardian? Does he want his sister to raise your child if you both died? She can still do that, no matter who is the Godparent. Guardians are completely different things, but many people mix up the two roles.

About the abuse. talk to him about WHY the abuse crisis makes him not want his child to be Catholic. Is it because he thinks the abuse crisis proves that the Catholic Church is all wrong? Or is it because he is concerned for his child's safety?

-He may also need to be reassured that his child will be protected from abuse. As a person who is hyper-sensitive to abuse anyway, I have a rule that my kids are not left alone with any adults other than particular safe ones. This includes priests. So my ds, who is an altar server (and yours doesn't have to be one) is never alone with our priest. Not that I think he's shady or likely to abuse, but because he is a human adult male, and I don't leave my kids with human adult males who I don't know extremely well. Let him know that whatever standards you and he apply to any other adults in your child's lives, can also be applied to those in the Church.

-Perhaps he needs to see some stats that show the prevalence among protestant religions, and then among teachers. The Catholic church is no worse, if even as bad, as these groups.

-Let him also see that the Catholic Church has responded to the crisis with a lot of changes in order to keep the problems from happening again. It still isn't perfect, but when you compare it to most other institutions that your child will be a part of in his lifetime, it is doing better now.

-Let him know that you are not blinded to the humanity and failings of people just because they happen to be church leaders. From the beginning of the Church, it's leaders were screwing up. Look at Peter and his triple denial of Christ! This argument becomes theological, but let your dh know that the issue of whether or not the Church's beliefs are true is not the same as whether or not the church leaders are capable of sin.

Honestly, I think that your best best will be to address it based on your original goals and agreements and your commitment to protect your child no matter what.


#4

Your husband has been misinformed if he thinks sexual abuse is a "Catholic-only" problem. It's not, nor is it as big/widespread in the Church as the media makes it seem. There's plenty of such abuse in public schools and it's rampant in Protestant churches. Abuse is a societal problem not a Catholic problem. If he wants to protect your child from abuse he should be sure the public school your child will probably attend knows how to handle any potential abuse since that's where a good deal of it takes place. If he wants proof all he has to do is do a quick Google search on the topic.


#5

He needs to be reminded that there are sinners in every church and school, along the same lines as the scandals.

It is also important for him to know that the news media hates the Catholic Church and always puts their scandals on the front page, and others have small mention in different parts of the newspaper. The Catholic Church is doing everything possible to make sure our children are protected and that those responsible for accepting seminarians into the seminary, and their spiritual directors, make sure that no one who is not suited to be a priest will not get in. One of the reasons for their hatred of the Catholic Church is that it is against abortion, euthenasia, and same-sex marriage. Many other Christian churches are becoming very wimpy about those things.

Also, we have many saints in the Church! Those who have received the title because of their heroic lives of sanctity! Those who hate the church do not write about this.


#6

Your situation is similar to mine. I am a cradle catholic and my husband has no religion. However, my husband knows that I will not budge in regards to raising our children catholic. It is not a topic that would ever be considered up for discussion.

Your husband agreed to raising your children catholic and he must keep this promise. Stay strong! Will send prayers..


#7

Thank you for all the responses. I have used many of the arguments above in our previous discussions about this topic. I think my husband did not know just how intensly he would love our son, so when he was born, he was forced to actually think about what he agreed to and is now not happy with what he promised. He acknowledges that he did make the promise, but it was an uninformed decision and that is neither here nor there. We have to deal with the issues now.

Like I said, I have my own struggles with the Church. He knows this. I try to be the best "Catholic" that I can be, but don't we all have our struggles and doubts sometimes?

I think what I struggle with the most is finding the words to explain. I am almost 30 years old, and have gone to the same church with my family my whole life, sat in the same pew, etc. I never imagined growing up someday and having a family, but going to church on my own without my spouse. I certainly never imagined growing up and going to church, but leaving my husband AND baby at home. But, I married my husband and don't regret it for a second. There is nothing for me to compare this pain to. He can't understand my love for Jesus Christ, and he can't understand that there is a family side to this to. I realize that I can't make decisions based on my parents now that I'm an adult, but I'm just not willing to put my parents through the pain of their grandbaby not joining us at church. I just can't do that to them.

Now I'm just rambling. Thanks again for reading and praying!


#8

You know, the sex scandle is very frustrating to say the least. After the Victims, I think only a Catholic can feel so violated.

However, sex scandles are not the drive of our Church. I mean, what about Clinton and Monica. Does DH no longer want to be an American, because as it turns out MANY within our Gov’t do bad things? Married men with young impressionable, job seeking interns? Teaching our country that adulty is perfectly OK. What about athletes and drug usage or all their hookups with prostitutes? Do we NO LONGER go to baseball games ?

Within governing bodies there will ALWAYS be someone who abuses their power. ALWAYS. Sad but true. There exists no utopian world ANYWHERE other than heaven.

So, I ask, do you no longer abide by civil law? Do we no longer stand to defend our country on one level or another. Are soldiers of America not similar on some level as priests of the Church. Are some soilders really awful people… you betchya. Some of them will go home to beat their wives, and abuse their children. But that does not mean we don’t value and thank our vets. Most did a worthy job.

And that, my friend is why our Faith and the Catholic Church and our actions are so important. Because NO MATTER what anyone else does, we have a goal in mind… Heaven. Not just to live in a great country, or enjoy games regardless of the lack of morals we even now see on the golf course… JEEZ!

We had a similar problem with regard to God Parents. DH understood. SIL felt slighted that she was not chosen. That instead my Catholic sister was. I guess the question that your DH MUST answer… How can SIL commit to raising the child in the Catholic Church if she knows nothing of it? Will she know when to call to make sure you’ve signed your child up for Sunday School, CCD, Communion, Confession, confirmation? Will she be discussing Jesus with your child in a Catholic way? Many people don’t actually understand the significance of the role. In our situation, DH is of another race with many cultural/tribal activites that he occassionaly takes part in. Mostly funerals and stuff. I had to explain to his sister that would be like my sister getting upset because she couldn’t preside over THEIR event. Well, THAT was ridiculous… what does MY sister KNOW about THEIR culture… EXACTLY!!! This is more than a cute title. Much, much more! That has to be explained. I understand hurt feelings. But if you’re not even qualified for the job, you (sil) has no right to even feel left out. I’m sure, however, she’s invited to the event.

Be prepared to explain the sacaraments to the rest of your non Catholic family. It’s important they know and understand they can’t/aren’t allowed to undermine this upbringing with their own ideas. A rule, your husband basically agreed to enforce IMO.

Again, my DH is not Catholic. We also had the talk about raising children Catholic. It’s on TAPE! I have it recorded. Will you accept children from God - YES, Will you raise them Catholic - YES… Do you take this woman… if he didn’t mean yes, then he shouldn’t have said yes. That was a deal breaker. The end.

Now that my kids are old enough to notice that daddy doesn’t go to church with us… Daddy HAS to go to church with us. If he’s working, he’s off the hook. If he’s not… he goes. It’s one hour a week. That’s really no big deal.

I’ve told my husband, I do not expect conversion. Not even remotely. But I do share with him. And I ask him to ask me questions of anything that sounds weird or off or WHATEVER. Sometimes I can answer immediately, other times he teaches me I don’t have a good answer and I have to look it up. It’s different having been raised Catholic than converting. There are things we learn as a child and just “know”… but don’t have the solid background info, and don’t bother looking any further. Mostly because our “background” info was supplied in the 2nd grade, and we don’t remember the details. More often than not, I’m happy to just follow the “rules”. But I also like to be able to answer why…

At this juncture, I would tell DH this…

  1. I fully plan to hold him to his promise. I don’t care if he made it without investigating. That’s his problem.

  2. I completely understand his concern with regard to sex scandles. You are too! Who wouldn’t be? It bugs me they happen in the White House… But recognize the Church has implemented many rules to protect children. No one left alone with a single adult. Which is a sad state that we’ve come to. But their are protections in place. Plus the Church holds regular classes/lectures, age appropriate, for children to learn about preditors. This is more than almost any other institution out there. It’s not like you’re going to drop your child off with the priest that gives you the creeps… just because.

  3. Ask him the “rules” that he doesn’t understand, or like and get down to the nitty gritty of why they are in place.

HTHS


#9

[quote="DenverJen, post:1, topic:222126"]
Hi everyone,
I've just stumbled upon this website and hope I can find some answers and prayers. To make a long story short, I am Catholic (born and raised) and I married an amazing, wonderful man who is not a follower of Jesus. We have a beautiful son who is 15 months old.

Before we were married, I made it clear that I will continue to practicing in the Catholic church, and that our children would be raised Catholic. We were married in the Catholic church and our son was baptised. My husband never had any problems with this plan, until the baptism when he started really learning all the "rules." For example, he thought his sister could be the Godparent but didn't realize that the Godparents have to be Catholic. Now with all the stories of abuse in the news, and lots of other "issues" that are arising, he is now saying he absolutely doesn't want our son raised Catholic and wants me to stop bringing him to church.

We've been putting off a discussion but are finally talking tonight. I need help and advice. How can I explain to my husband that this is not acceptable to me? I am a very strong willed and confident person, but when it comes to this subject, I can't find the words to help him understand how painful that would be for me. He has no faith and can only see the negatives of the Catholic church. I don't want scripture to help prove my points, just a way to communicate and get through to him so that he can realize that going back on his word, and not allowing our son to go to mass with me will be so damaging to our marriage. In all other areas of our marriage we communicate well and compromise, but this is the one subject that neither one of us will bend on and I'm fearful that we won't be able to find an answer.

I have my own problems and questions of the church, but I need my own time to come to terms with these issues. All prayers are certainly appreciated too.

Thanks so much!

[/quote]

Does he have family members who are working on him about the abuse scandals? This is a common attack from Catholic-haters. I'm not sure if he really is concerned about your son possibly being abused, or if he's using that issue as a way to keep you from passing along your religious beliefs to your son. If he has no faith, he shouldn't be that opposed to your faith. What's his family background?

As others have said, child abuse is not the exclusive property of the Catholic Church, and in fact, given how many Catholic children were NOT abused, it is a tiny percentage of all the positive influences that priests have been over the years. Protestant pastors, coaches, teachers, scout leaders, anyone who has access to children might be an abuser. Why don't we hear about the other abusers? Because the people who dig up every scandal about the Church are Catholic haters!!! They don't care as much about the children as they do about attacking the Church.

I am not going to pile on you when you are in the middle of this problem, but this is why I tell people not to marry outside their faith. It can be OK without kids, but once kids come on the scene, these things just seem to come up and never go away. Both people get more committed to their beliefs. And unfortunately, data shows that religious faith is either strengthened or damaged for the kids depending upon what the dad does or doesn't do. So even if you work extra hard at it, if your husband does not attend Mass with you and your son (and future kids), they will be more likely to leave the Church or become apathetic. Just the way it is.

My husband was baptized Catholic but isn't acting like it. He's faked it for my sake all these years (older son is 20) but has criticized every aspect of the Mass the whole time and never does anything else except the minimal prayer at meals, so I've got one faithful kid and one who is no longer going to church.

I definitely would not give in on this issue. Stay kind, but firm, and try to find out what he's really thinking or who might be whispering in his ear. What are the other "issues" that he is concerned about?


#10

[quote="DenverJen, post:7, topic:222126"]
I realize that I can't make decisions based on my parents now that I'm an adult, but I'm just not willing to put my parents through the pain of their grandbaby not joining us at church. I just can't do that to them.

[/quote]

Take a deep breath. I think it's GREAT that you are considering your parents. But what your REALLY CAN'T do, is deny your child the best chance he has to get to heaven. Of all people, your child must be considered first. It just so happens that such appropriate consideration will keep your parents happy!

I'm sure God grants you many graces that you bring your child to church, even when you're struggling. Because you KNOW it's the right thing to do.

Pray that God will guide you to the additional answers that you need. Pray that God will guide your husband to steer the right course.

Be strong. You ARE doing the right thing. There is no need to fight about it. Just keep telling your husband that you will go to the extreme to answer his questions... to help him feel comfy with the decision that he already made and committed to. But sorry, this is ONE he can't take back.


#11

Jen, prayer, prayer, prayer. Havard's suggestions are very good. A great approach, but it may only delay his adamant opposition. In all organizations there are rules. The Catholic Church is no exception to that. Sometimes when a rule isn't met well by a non-Catholic, they object to the whole church and not simply that particular rule.

I have a similar experience with my wife. I have been blessed to be married to a WONDERFUL woman for over 30 years. She is Protestant (Church of Christ). We have twin sons, who are both adults now. They were not baptized as infants due to her opposition. Regardless of my pleading, begging, etc., she just couldn't support it. To make a long story short, one of the twins is now Catholic, one attends the Church of Christ. :)

So what am I doing about it now? Praying...in private. This is the first time I have told anyone this. About a year ago, I was doing some reading and came across some information on the green scapular. I bought one and placed it in a drawer in our bedroom. Simultaneous to that, I began praying daily the prayer, "Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death." I then pray to Mary to intercede for my wife. I do this daily. Every day. In silence.

You know what? Just the other day, my wife broke her bible open and tried to make an argument against a Catholic doctrine concerning...MARY! I defended the position and the "discussion" began. She stated that she's just not sure what church to believe any more. She said there are definitely things in the Catholic church she cannot ever accept. She also said there are things at the Church of Christ that are beginning to bother her. But she stated emphatically, "I will NEVER become Catholic!!!"

Inside, I was praying to Mary the whole time. When the conversation was over, I thanked Mary for interceding on my wife's behalf. The way I see it, the Holy Spirit is working in my wife's life in ways none of us can understand. He is getting her to think about her faith and to question that from within. Even with her stance, I feel optimistic that one day, ONE DAY, she might convert. I feel this way because 1-God can do anything, 2-My wife is beginning to question her own faith tradition, and 3-There are thousands of people who at one time held even harsher positions and they are now some of the best defenders of the Catholic Church (Scott Hahn comes to mind)!

So, Jen, have the conversation but remember 1 Peter 3:15-16:
Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope, but do it with gentleness and reverence, keeping your conscience clear, so that, when you are maligned, those who defame your good conduct in Christ may themselves be put to shame.

Be patient. Be kind. He will say some hateful, hurtful things about the holy mother Church. Let him. Remember that Jesus told us that all his disciples will be persecuted because of him. Be firm in your position. Try to understand his position, even though you will feel he isn't even considering yours. If he will listen, explain how important your faith is to you - even though mere words cannot ever express these feelings adequately. Try to make him see that this is not a group to which you simply belong. It is a part of you. To criticize the church is to criticize you.

It might help to ask him to give you three points of discussion and only three. They need to be as specific as possible. If one could be taken several ways, try to lead him to define which way he wants to discuss it. Then limit this discussion to those three points ONLY. Don't let the conversation creep into other areas. Limit them to what was agreed upon. If he brings up something out of scope, tell him you will be happy to talk about that point later but for now let's finish this one topic. Ask him to explain his position. Then tell him you understand how he feels. That will make him feel less defensive. Tell him that if you were in his shoes, you might feel the same way. That, too, should help him lower his shields. Then you can kindly explain the Catholic position. You can even begin with the caveat that you don't expect him to accept or even understand the teaching, but please try to understand why this is important to you. With that, he can maintain his objection while you at least get to explain your position.

Your objective here is to plant seeds. You never know which seeds will die and which will take root. It may take some time for the rooted ones to begin to grow, but keep planting. He may object with great enthusiasm at first, but after contemplation he may soften his position.

The main thing is to be kind and not argumentative. If he raises his voice, soften yours. If he gets animated, get even calmer. Ask that the discussion remain a discussion and not an argument. If that becomes impossible, tell him in the most kind way that you cannot continue until he is able to control his emotions and talk calmly. It may take a few nights or weeks, but it is important to have these discussions.

And remember. You don't have to win every discussion. Your job is to plant the seeds, pray for him, and let the Holy Spirit work in his life. Remember the words of Archbishop Sheen, "Win an argument and you lose a soul."

Peace,
Jeff


#12

[quote="DenverJen, post:1, topic:222126"]
Hi everyone,
I've just stumbled upon this website and hope I can find some answers and prayers. To make a long story short, I am Catholic (born and raised) and I married an amazing, wonderful man who is not a follower of Jesus. We have a beautiful son who is 15 months old.

Before we were married, I made it clear that I will continue to practicing in the Catholic church, and that our children would be raised Catholic. We were married in the Catholic church and our son was baptised. My husband never had any problems with this plan, until the baptism when he started really learning all the "rules." For example, he thought his sister could be the Godparent but didn't realize that the Godparents have to be Catholic. Now with all the stories of abuse in the news, and lots of other "issues" that are arising, he is now saying he absolutely doesn't want our son raised Catholic and wants me to stop bringing him to church.

[/quote]

Red herring - fewer than 1% of priests have ever been involved in anything like this. By contrast, day care providers, school teachers, sports coaches, and scout leaders offend at a much higher rate - what is he going to do; lock the child in his room for the rest of his life? :shrug:

If you street-proof your child, he'll be safe from every predator, including any priest who happens to be hinky.

We've been putting off a discussion but are finally talking tonight. I need help and advice. How can I explain to my husband that this is not acceptable to me? I am a very strong willed and confident person, but when it comes to this subject, I can't find the words to help him understand how painful that would be for me. He has no faith and can only see the negatives of the Catholic church.

He married you, even though you are Catholic, and it seems clear that you've been a Church-going Catholic all of your life. Just remind him that this is part of the package - it's part of who you are, that you raise your children to be good Catholics. It's called a "traditional religion" because it is passed down from generation to generation, through families. :)


#13

I just want to add to my earlier comment that there is a lot that you could say, but try to limit this first discussion to simply a first step in the matter. Don't look at tonight's discussion as a debate that will win him over.

Just set a simple goal of getting him to agree on some simple things, like being willing to listen and consider your side of this. If all you accomplish is to get him to do that, you've accomplished a lot.

I would save individual points of contention for a later discussion. Just say 'let's look into the issues you're concerned about together.'

A good next step might be setting up a meeting with your pastor to talk about these issues. Having a third party like a priest would be good, because priests are often very calm and understanding, they've all heard these concerns before and they should be able to keep the inquiry positive and informative.

Hope this all helps. My prayers are with you. :o


#14

I just remembered one other thing you might want to point out. Marriage is a vocation. It is a calling. One of the responsibilities of marriage is to be open to life - to have children if possible. Another equally important part of the vocation is to put the interests of your spouse and children ahead of your own. The biggest interest a spouse/parent can have is the eternal salvation of their loved ones. By raising your son in the church, you are fulfilling your responsibility to teach him about God so that his salvation can be obtained. In addition, you are upholding your covenant promise you made to God upon entering the marriage.

Again, he probably won't buy into this, but it may shed some light on your stance that he may come to appreciate one day.


#15

Well the thing is, we've had so many discussions before. This one tonight is the one where we are supposed to find the "answer!"

These responses are all helping me already. I would like to say that the abuse is just a part of the problem, not all of it. So let’s not focus completely on that. To answer the question of my husband’s background…well, he was born and raised in England. We met while travelling. I lived in the UK with him for a year (yes I know), and then he moved here and we were married. He is the most wonderful, generous, kind person I know. He just was never exposed to any sort of religion, church, faith, etc. He and his family all believe in God but that’s about as far as it goes. I know this is a growing problem in England. They tend to think we Americans are “religious nuts.” While I was in England, I found a church nearby and made friends with the Irish priest who told me all the time of the churches closing down all over the UK, because people just don’t go. So he is coming from a place that just doesn’t value organized religion. NONE of his friends or family members practice faith of any kind.

The other issues he has with the church are the opposition to birth control and the opposition to gay marriage. My husband is quite the liberal. I will be honest and say I struggle with both of these myself and have a hard time with it. (But let’s not get into the arguments for or against these things).

What it comes down to is that my husband feels that the church is “behind the times.” He thinks that in 50 years, we’ll compare the way homosexuals are treated now, including not letting them marry, to the civil rights movement. He wants to teach our son that all of us are children of God and He made us the way we are (black/white/gay/straight). Again, let’s not get into a debate about homosexuality.

My husband is so anti-Catholic right now, that he is willing to go to a non-denominational church with me every Sunday. Right now, he only comes to mass with me on holidays, so that say’s a lot.

I appreciate so much all of your responses and prayers so far. I keep saying to myself today "what can I say tonight to make him understand?" I'm preparing myself as best I can and reading all of these responses has made me feel hopeful. So thank you!


#16

Well, he married a “religious nut,” then. This is something that “religious nuts” do - raise their kids in the faith, and bring them to Church. :smiley:

While I was in England, I found a church nearby and made friends with the Irish priest who told me all the time of the churches closing down all over the UK, because people just don’t go. So he is coming from a place that just doesn’t value organized religion. NONE of his friends or family members practice faith of any kind.

Ah, yes - the whole argument about how just because you’re in a garage doesn’t mean you’re a car, and just because you go to Church doesn’t mean you’re a good Christian.

The problem with that argument, though, is that, just as a car has to go to the garage at regular intervals to get gassed up, get the oil changed, and get other regular maintenance, including replacing broken and worn out parts, in order for it to remain a car, and not, say, a pile of scrap metal shaped like a car - so also, Christians have to go to Church at regular intervals, in order to remain Christians - otherwise, they might only be calling themselves Christians, without the necessary properly moving and properly motivated parts inside that actually make them Christians.

The other issues he has with the church are the opposition to birth control and the opposition to gay marriage. My husband is quite the liberal. I will be honest and say I struggle with both of these myself and have a hard time with it. (But let’s not get into the arguments for or against these things).

Once one fully examines the Church teachings on these issues, they turn out to be perfectly sensible.

What it comes down to is that my husband feels that the church is “behind the times.” He thinks that in 50 years, we’ll compare the way homosexuals are treated now, including not letting them marry, to the civil rights movement.

There is absolutely no similarity between sexual behaviour that one chooses to do, and skin colour that one is born with.

He wants to teach our son that all of us are children of God and He made us the way we are (black/white/gay/straight). Again, let’s not get into a debate about homosexuality.

God certainly did create all of us the way we are. What we choose to do with it after God has given it to us may or may not be in line with how God wants us to be. :slight_smile:


#17

He's only giving you this one last night to discuss the issue? :confused:

Since he's the one that is backing out of a promise (because he didn't do his homework), he's in no position to dictate terms like this. I don't care what one believes, even a secular marriage counselor would agree that he needs to take responsibility for his actions.

Tell him that further inquiry into the Church will not compromise his integrity or beliefs, it will only testify his integrity and broaden his understandings. What other excuse could he have not to learn more?

It's not possible for him to know everything. All that's left is it's intellectual pride, intellectual laziness, or a combination of the two. If either of those is the case, is he going to let those stumbling blocks drastically injure your marriage? If that's his main obstacle, he needs to "man up" and decide what's more important.


#18

Love blinds you to certain things. He was in love with you emotionally speaking and made his decisions based on raw emotions. He thought if he agreed to this then things would work out with you.

Now that you have been married for a while, the attachment is gone. He doesnt think like he is emotionally in love. He thinks like he normally does. Romantic love wavers after marriage. I bet he regrets his decision to agree to raise the kids as Catholics.

I am also willing to bet he is or will push for birth control measures. I bet that will be the next fight.

Be straightforward and ask him if he would have married you if he knew what the Church taught.

I think many people get into mixed marriages thinking they will be able to change the other. When it doesnt happen, they become depressed when the kids dont share the faith and that they are lonely in the journey.

How many threads on here are just like this one? How many people have a story just like the OP?

A lot of people talk of the benefits of mixed marriages because some do convert. However, most do not convert. Most actually becoming more entrenched in their faith and the kids see the mixed messages and become lukewarm at best. Most become agnostic.

I think the church does a real poor job of promoting Catholic marriage between two Catholics.

I think the best thing the OP can do is take a stand. Be firm. Be assertive. You are fighting this battle for the SOUL of your baby. If you cave in to your husband, you new baby might not make it to heaven. That is how you must view this discussion. It is truly a life and death discussion.


#19

[quote="mjs1987, post:18, topic:222126"]

How many threads on here are just like this one? How many people have a story just like the OP?

[/quote]

Far too many - and you know what? Everyone reads them, and thinks, "Well, I'm different. My spouse would never do that to me. We are in love. Our love will overcome every difference."

And a year later when the baby comes, we get to hear the second verse of the same old song - (s)he won't let me baptize the baby. He (or she) won't let me take the baby to church. :(

I think the church does a real poor job of promoting Catholic marriage between two Catholics.

We definitely need to emphasize this a lot more, but how do we reach kids at the age when they begin to date - when they are making the crucial decisions that will ultimately determine who they will marry?

Because, really - that's where the same old song begins, isn't it?

"They're only dating. It's not like she's going to marry the guy."

But if she never dates a Catholic boy, she can't marry one, can she? :shrug:

And then everybody is all surprised when the boy she is dating asks for her hand in marriage. (Like, a good Catholic boy was just going to appear magically out of nowhere and do this?)

I think the best thing the OP can do is take a stand. Be firm. Be assertive. You are fighting this battle for the SOUL of your baby. If you cave in to your husband, you new baby might not make it to heaven. That is how you must view this discussion. It is truly a life and death discussion.

I agree. :)


#20

[quote="DenverJen, post:1, topic:222126"]
Now with all the stories of abuse in the news, and lots of other "issues" that are arising, he is now saying he absolutely doesn't want our son raised Catholic and wants me to stop bringing him to church.

[/quote]

The other posters have already said most of what I would say, but I just want to point out that this argument is completely lacking in logic.

In 2008, the Church asserted that the scandal was a very serious problem but, at the same time, estimated that it was "probably caused by 'no more than 1 per cent' (or 5,000) of the over 500,000 Roman Catholic priests worldwide.

There were fewer than 7000 substantiated reports of priests sexually abusing children over the 52 year period from 1950 - 2002.

Meanwhile, in the United States, over 40,000 people are killed in a car accident EACH YEAR. Is your husband also disallowing your child from riding in a vehicle for the next 18 years? :shrug:


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