When You Consider Sacrificing Religion

There are times in life where small things matter as part of the larger whole, though it could be said that the life I lead demands a little bit more than just the small things that make the larger whole a bit more complete.

Me: You do know if anything I’ve more to worry about religion than you?
Her: Yeah you do.

For years is has always been that problem of my own religion that makes who I date uncomfortable or at least worry about the eventual end of things. It’s not that they don’t know I’m pretty agnostic about my beliefs, it’s that in my country, your religion is something that is actually put down on paper for all to record, and in a system where hereditary religion and bureaucracy are about one and the same, it makes a lot of parents a little twitchy about their kids dating Muslims let alone marrying them.

So where does that leave me right now? In uncertainty that’s for sure. I’d be naive to tell believe that her parents are entirely happy about her dating me. It wouldn’t matter whether I’m a nice guy, it wouldn’t even matter what my blood holds, it’ll just matter what the paper says at the end of it and that matters a lot if I am to marry her in Malaysia. I know her parents are good people. I just wouldn’t want to get into anyone’s bad books because of something I didn’t choose to do. That would be most unfair for everyone.

So what if I don’t marry her in Malaysia? Yes, that’s the answer isn’t it? We’re already in another country and would be willing to stay here because it’s the sensible thing to do when your job prospects for both your careers in question are far more suited for the environment. Then again, no matter how far we are from home, nothing will hide the fact that we’re still Malaysians and it will always remain official that I am in a belief system that I don’t even believe, not unless I’m willing never to return to Malaysia as a citizen, but at least I know that won’t make her parents chew of their fingernails.

Given the options that I can think of right now, every one of them ends with either me leaving the country for good. Either because I’ll be ostracized by my own people for living the way I want that it’ll be almost imposible to live a decent life or it’ll just be easier to get out and save any problems for a family I want to spare the issues that I’ve been through as a result of a mixed marriage. Then again, seeing where I am in life, it’s easy to remember that whatever my choices for the future is, they are pretty much immature to consider. Life for us right now still revolves around building what’s needed for us to advance our careers and the prospect of settling down while something nice to dream off while sunning on the veranda on a cold winter afternoon, isn’t really that important until both of us have that job security we want.

One thing remains clear, every relationship demands some form of sacrifice to make things work. How far would I go to make it work is one question I won’t be alone in answering. She has her right to make her choices in life too. I just hope that it’ll be “I do” when the time comes.

6 thoughts on “When You Consider Sacrificing Religion

  1. I have a rule that I never comment on politics or religion so I will say that a relationship is what you two make of it. And the optimist in me likes to think that it can transcend obstacles.

  2. hehe… maybe i’m a little too young to say anything about this. But to be frank i never thought religion could come in the way of any healthy or happy relationship… i’ve got friends who broke up with their boyfrens after a year of complete happiness because they ‘spoke to God’… and frens who failed their exams and don’t care because ‘God wanted it’…

    I’m not very strong in my religion but i don’t go agaisnt it aswell. But sometimes there is a limit to everything… and maybe too much of it won’t be as good as we thought.

    Depends on the individual i guess… XD

  3. … or we could live a perpetual lie in Malaysia by acting like a Muslim couple but are in actuality not?

    Or be perpetually in a relationship but unmarried.

    Bad suggestions aside, yes, thinking of marriage is a bit early innat? I’d say just get whatever business done first, and then see where life takes you. Life’s too short to worry 😀

  4. Your situation sounds like a difficult one. I’ve never had to deal with a culture that puts such emphasis on religion. Though I have a few Jewish friends that have had similar situations, not on a national level, just familial.

    In the end, you’re living your life for you. What is most important is the happiness of you and your loved ones. This does not necessarily include your extended family or even your family at all. You don’t choose your family, I do not hold that blood is necessarily thicker than water. You must decide and act on what is best for you, not your family, not your country. If you can’t live the way you want without being ostracized, then leaving is the right answer. What’s the alternative? Give in and live the way you do NOT want? What kind of solution would that be? Don’t be a slave to your family, your country, or religion.

  5. Chickybabe: I liked being an optimist in relationships. Though I do believe now that love isn’t enough for a relationship. Some things don’t always work out that way I guess.

    Tiara: You’re definitely not the only one. 🙂

    Debbie: Everything has to excercise limit and caution. Thing is…sometimes people don’t and that’s what causes all the problems.

    Keen: I think too much and that’s a fact. I wouldn’t worry too much though. She gives me a reason to kick back and relax whenever I start overdoing it. Besides, this biological clock is on overdrive anyway. 🙂

    Alex: Too true, though some responsibilities encompass not just for yourself, but for others as well. Not exactly a slave to it, but some duties need to be done regardless. Besides, a relationship, not just between two people but to the society depends on deciding what compromises and if possible sacrifices that need to be made in order to get along with people. Going gung ho on everything that you want usually isn’t the right course to go, for family or otherwise, makes for bad experiences as I picked up a while back.

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