Don't let your kids date non-Catholics?

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-02-2008
Don't let your kids date non-Catholics?
13
Mon, 08-02-2010 - 8:38am

I was just perusing the Internet before the day fully got underway, and I came across this blog entry from Patrick Madrid. I am not sure who he is, but he has a radio show and blog (which I am bookmarking). This entry is from November 2009: http://patrickmadrid.blogspot.com/2009/11/my-advice-to-catholic-parents-dont-let.html

A young man called in to the radio show to ask for advice. He started dating a Presbyterian girl, who he really liked (and still does). After he told her parents that he was Catholic, she broke up with him. The girl's dad shared with him his feelings about Catholics (he is not a fan), which was her reason for breaking up with him.

Madrid's advice was to say that mixed marriages are a recipe for disaster down the road in marriage. At the end of the call, he makes this warning to Catholic parents who might let their children date outside the faith: Do not fool yourself into thinking that there will not be a price to pay at some point.

I loved reading the comments at the end of the blog entry. They were very thought-provoking. The blog entry links to the MP3 of the actual call.

What do you think? If you're married to a non-Catholic (or are a non-Catholic married to a Catholic), do any of his points make sense to you?












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iVillage Member
Registered: 08-26-2000
Mon, 08-02-2010 - 4:47pm

I don't know how much say-so parents have by the time kids get to be dating age and who they "allow" them to date.

I dated a guy for several years who was a non-practicing Church of Christ member, but I eventually married another "cradle Catholic". I heard my ex-boyfriend eventually married a Catholic, converted, and had a slew of children. I'm glad that things worked out as they did for me. We have differences of opinions, as it is. I can only imagine if we had totally different faith traditions.

None of my siblings married Catholics. My two brothers no longer practice their faith, and my brother's children are not really being raised Catholic. Baptized and First Communion, but that's about it. I think my sister is semi-practicing.

For my own kids - we've talked about the difficulties of mixed marriage, but I don't think I will hugely interfere in their love lives and freak out if they go to Homecoming with someone who is not Catholic. That being said, it would bother me if a girlfriend tried to "convert" them away from Catholicism. I can only hope that what I've taught them will stick with them.

 


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iVillage Member
Registered: 12-28-2007
Mon, 08-02-2010 - 5:09pm
I am a cradle Catholic. I dated a cradle Catholic who was cruel, abusive, and sadistic. I married a non-practicing Methodist. He is the most sensitive, loving, and devoted husband and father. He attends church with us every Sunday, stood up to his Baptist minister brother over our choice of religion, and taught both our daughters not only the Lord's prayer, but also the Hail Mary. He is not interested in converting and our priest refers to him as the parish's resident Methodist-Catholic.
There is no doubt in my mind over which of those men was a follower of Christ.
Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997
Tue, 08-03-2010 - 11:32am

Amen, sister. Before I met my agnostic DH, I dated a Catholic...who turned out to be engaged to someone else! Before my sister married her current DH, she was married to a Catholic...who beat her all throughout their relationship (making sure he only did it in places covered by clothing so the bruises wouldn't show).

"Date only Catholics" is a narrow-minded and false filter, and I personally believe that it's a filter used by people more interested in circumscribing their kids' lives rather than raising kids to be who they are meant to be and to see Christ in ALL people (not just Catholics). I don't think Christ would have approved of that, and ultimately, our purpose in life is to serve God through Christ.

Kelly

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-02-2008
Wed, 08-04-2010 - 11:33am
Kelly, I agree. It does seem pretty narrow-minded. My husband is a "cradle Catholic" as well, but I think he's more agnostic than anything. His faith was never something I even factored in when we were dating. I agree that there will be challenges in the marriage, but I think if a couple goes into the marriage with a good idea of what those hurdles will be (with some good pre-marital counseling), then they'll be better prepared to work through them.











iVillage Member
Registered: 10-23-2001
Thu, 08-05-2010 - 10:11am

A little bit of all these posts resonates..I am married to a converted Catholic.

 


 


iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Fri, 08-06-2010 - 12:34am

Too funny, because I am the non Catholic girlfriend to my now husband! And I converted, and yet our religious differences are that he won't come to Mass.

Now, would I care if my kids wanted to date someone of a different religion?? NOPE! HOWEVER, I will not stand still if say the boyfriend's family is Baptist and they just verbally abuse her and her faith. That won't be cool. Any other religion for that matter. I will not let her feel bad for being Catholic. KWIM?




Marianne, mom to Margaret (01/02), Elizabeth (03/04) and Annabelle (07/07)

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Marianne, mom to Margaret (01/02), Elizabeth (03/04) and Annabelle (07/07)
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-28-2007
Fri, 08-06-2010 - 7:38am
Glad your husband is as great as my Knight (in slightly tarnished armor).
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-28-2003
Mon, 08-09-2010 - 10:28pm

I remember when my husband (then boyfriend) decided to become Catholic, a few Protestants of different faiths said that it was better that we be "similarly yoked," or words like that. I figured they were quoting some Bible passage, and I thought it was interesting that they thought that it was better for us to be the same religion than for him to remain Protestant.


After 12 years of marriage, I have to say I can see the advantages of being of similar mind on faith. I also have to say that both being Catholic doesn't mean that we are always of similar mind. ;-)


No, I would never insist that my children date Catholics only. I wouldn't be pleased if they seriously dated those who are anti-Catholic, however. And if they married non-Catholics, I would still expect the children to be raised Catholic.


I'm sure there are challenges to mixed-religion marriages, just as there are challenges in all other areas where spouses differ. Jen, I agree with you that it is important to talk through all the implications beforehand to avoid conflicts later. I have a good Catholic friend whose wife is Jewish. When they were engaged, he told me that he figured they'd work out how to raise the children once they had them. That did sound like a recipe for disaster for me -- but they're still happily married, so they must have worked it out.


Polly

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-11-2007
Wed, 08-11-2010 - 2:20pm
I would also be concerned if my daughter was dating a muslim.NOt that I know that much about the Muslim religion.It is just that women living in countries that are mainly Muslim,seem to be treated as second class citizens or property and not as human beings.I will say maybe I am being unfair and this may just be a sterotype but it

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Wed, 08-11-2010 - 4:50pm

I was raised Greek Orthodox, which, for those of you who don't know, is very ethnic. My parents were born in Greece. Despite the fact that the DOCTRINE in Orthodoxy is nearly identical to that of Catholicism, including devotion to saints and Sacrament, my parents could not see outside their narrow little ethnic window, and decided prior to having kids that all their kids would marry Greeks who were Orthodox. Unfortunately for their scripted plans for their offspring, they sent us all to public school. . . I met my DH in high school and fell in love with him. One of the first things I noticed about him when we began dating was that he had a rosary hanging in his locker. He was raised devoutly Catholic. When we got serious (with the possibility of permanency), my mom decided that we needed to break up mostly because he was not Greek . . . 20+ years and four kids later, we see how well her plans for my life worked!! I converted to Catholicism when my husband and I were engaged, and our kids are being raised Catholic.

Ultimately it would seem that we do not, as parents, have control over who are kids will date or even, really, who they will become as people. We pray that they become good adults with good morality, that they follow Christ's example, and put Him first. And we hope that if they do decide to marry, that their spouses will do so as well. I think that is pretty much where I fall when it comes to my kids' future dates/partners/spouses. Anything more, I think I would be setting myself up for profound disappointment.




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PROUD MOM TO MATTHEW, JUSTIN, TESSA & JENNA * LOVING WIFE TO MICHAEL




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