Boyfriend is very homophobic. Can we make it work?

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In summary, the person is in a relationship with a great boyfriend who is affectionate and caring, and is also responsible and family-oriented. However, their ideologies and beliefs are completely different, with the person being liberal and not religious while the boyfriend and his family hold more conservative views. They have discussed marriage and the person feels pressure to settle down. The main issue is their conflicting beliefs, especially regarding climate change and homosexuality. The person's mother does not think they will be happy in the long run, but the person believes that the boyfriend will be a wonderful father. However, they must discuss and compromise on how they will raise their children with such differing beliefs. The person also raises concerns about their boyfriend's homophobia and
  • #1
Toph_fan
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My boyfriend is a great boyfriend. He constantly tells me that I'm pretty, texts me often, is affectionate, always wants to spend time with me, cares about me etc. I could have never imagined that a guy would treat me as well as he does. He makes me feel like the only girl in the world. He's also responsible and very family oriented and he plans on moving in with me when I go to graduate school. We've discussed marriage a lot and he's told me multiple times that he wants to marry me. Also, his family is wonderful towards me. They've really made an effort to make me feel like part of the family.

Here's the main problem: our ideologies are completely different. I was raised in a secular household and religion has never been a part of my life. I'm liberal, I believe in climate change, I care for the environment and I'm not homophobic. He and his family are of course the opposite. My boyfriend doesn't believe in climate change and his sister has called people concerned about the environment hippies twice now. My bf thinks that climate change is just a big lie invented to make money. Both he and his sister believe that being gay is a choice and constantly make homophobic remarks. My bf even joked once that he'd break up with me if I wasn't homophobic even though he knows that I have close gay friends. I asked him once why he thought being gay was a choice and he told me that he thinks it's just a fad. I then tried to reason with him but he just ignored me and changed the topic. Also, his sister is a young Earth creationist even though she's really smart and a biology major. It just blows my mind how she can so readily disregard established scientific theories that conflict with her beliefs (such as the evidence for climate change, evolution etc). What's worse is that my boyfriend never wants to engage in friendly debates. I'm not one of those in your face debaters, I would just like to defend my position sometimes.

My mom doesn't think I'll be happy in the long run, however I think my bf is one of a kind. No guy has ever treated me this well before and I think that he will be a wonderful father. I also have already developed strong feelings for him. Also I'm almost 22 and I feel like time is passing me by. I will be entering grad school at almost 23 (I took time off after high school and I have a fall bday). It won't be long before I'm past my prime and I feel a lot of pressure to find a guy who is marriage material by then. I always read things on the internet about how women are past their prime after 25 and it makes me nervous (also, female fertility starts to decline in the late 20's). I kind of feel he's my last chance...
 
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  • #2


You are not "past your prime" at 25! That's nonsense. Are you talking about having children? If you're healthy, even 30 years doesn't really represent any significant increase in risks.

Since you have children and you and this man seems to be polar opposites in your beliefs, you need to discuss how the children will be raised and taught now. Disputes in child rearing is a major cause of marital problems.
 
  • #3


Toph_fan said:
I think that he will be a wonderful father.

Then ask him to answer this riddle:

A couple, early twenties, got a one-year old and a two year old. Mom stays home all day long taking care of them while he goes to work. He comes in at 4:00p and they both give each other the same precious gift. What is it?
 
  • #4


Evo said:
Since you have children and you and this man seems to be polar opposites in your beliefs, you need to discuss how the children will be raised and taught now. Disputes in child rearing is a major cause of marital problems.
She doesn't have children yet.
 
  • #5


jackmell said:
Then ask him to answer this riddle:

A couple, early twenties, got a one-year old and a two year old. Mom stays home all day long taking care of them while he goes to work. He comes in at 4:00p and they both give each other the same precious gift. What is it?

Would this be similar to the 'moral of the story' from Gift of the Magi?
 
  • #6


Evo said:
You are not "past your prime" at 25! That's nonsense. Are you talking about having children? If you're healthy, even 30 years doesn't really represent any significant increase in risks.

Since you have children and you and this man seems to be polar opposites in your beliefs, you need to discuss how the children will be raised and taught now. Disputes in child rearing is a major cause of marital problems.

Evo, that is so truthful and wise. But I wonder how in the world could she ever expect to discuss with him something so important for their future together as child rearing when he, as she has stated, does not want to engage in a friendly debate or discussion and will ignore or disregard her opinion? Would she be willing to accept that it may be his way or no way? Something she should think about is her ablity to compromise, compromise, compromise. Sorry, but I just get that feeling. If she concludes that would make her uncomfortable then perhaps her mother is also wise. But who is to really say.
 
  • #7


he's not going to be a great father if your son or daughter ends up being gay.

that aside, you can make it work if you don't let his homophobia and general disregard for science bother you. he will probably also want your kids to be devout christians and they may follow his example and hate gays/science too.

personally I've never met someone worth getting up every sunday morning for, let alone cause me to willingly subjugate my own views on the rights of others as well. it's not my place to comment further.
 
  • #8


Ugh, I wrote a long reply and then my internet went off.

I'm a bit concerned about what will happen if one of our kids ends up being gay. I want my children to feel loved and supported and obviously that might not happen if they end up being gay. Also, I'm not sure that he has a general disregard for science. He just has a disregard for the science that contradicts his beliefs. He's actually getting his degree in a STEM field. I'm kind of hoping that I can change him and make him a bit more open-minded. I know it sounds naive but he really isn't an irrational person. In fact, he usually thinks analytically and he's competent at pure math. I just feel like I could make him see the light if I could appeal to his reason a bit. Actually I think the biggest problem is that he's a bit closed minded. For example, he told me that he doesn't like any literature and that the only thing he enjoyed in English was grammar. However, his grammar isn't even great. I'm no grammar whiz and I often spot grammatical errors in his writing. I just feel like if you don't like ANY literature then you must be missing something. I think that perhaps he lacks emotional intelligence. He doesn't really seem to empathize with people outside his close family of friends.
 
  • #9


An interesting mix of what my signature is all about.

But I would run, you will never see him better as he is now, so imagine that without the flattery in the OP.
 
  • #10


Evo said:
You are not "past your prime" at 25! That's nonsense. Are you talking about having children? If you're healthy, even 30 years doesn't really represent any significant increase in risks.

Since you have children and you and this man seems to be polar opposites in your beliefs, you need to discuss how the children will be raised and taught now. Disputes in child rearing is a major cause of marital problems.

I'm more worried about the dating field after a certain age. People always say that college is the easiest time to date. However, I've had a lot of trouble finding nice, decent looking guys here.
 
  • #11


Toph_fan said:
I'm more worried about the dating field after a certain age. People always say that college is the easiest time to date. However, I've had a lot of trouble finding nice, decent looking guys here.
I would recommend holding off on a commitment with someone whose religious beliefs allow him to disrespect gay people without feeling guilt. One of my most trusted friends in college was a gay man (lost him to AIDS, sadly). I would never gotten romantically involved with a woman who would disparage him to me.

Depending on your school, you may be experiencing a "meat-market" situation, so broaden your group of friends and date casually. Lots of people find their significant other in the workplace, so dating after college is definitely do-able. Also, the men you meet will likely be more mature, and probably better-suited to you if you share professional interests.

Good luck!
 
  • #12


An observation: he does not respect your opinions (not just doesn't share them), and does not like you to express them. He shuts you down when you try to express contrary opinions, he does not engage. This is not a man who changes.

I would say that you need to decide whether or not you can live with the man he is today. If he is not susceptible to rational argument today he will not be tomorrow, either.

You are most definitely not past your prime in your twenties. For what it is worth, most of the new parents I know (am an only-slightly-used parent myself) are mid-thirties or later (definitely a biased sample, though). Three of the six couples that I know well enough to ask met after university.

I have one slightly odd question. Why did you write 'he plans on moving in with me when I go to grad school', rather than 'we are planning to move in together when I go to grad school'?
 
  • #13


To expand on a point Ibix made, I don't think he really respects you if these two statements are both true.

'My boyfriend is a great boyfriend. He constantly tells me that I'm pretty, texts me often, is affectionate, always wants to spend time with me, cares about me etc.'

'My bf even joked once that he'd break up with me if I wasn't homophobic even though he knows that I have close gay friends. I asked him once why he thought being gay was a choice and he told me that he thinks it's just a fad. I then tried to reason with him but he just ignored me and changed the topic.'

He showers you with complements and spends time with you to win you over. But when it comes to actually listening to you and respecting your views, he completely neglects you and simply makes up the difference later. Complementing you does not make him a great boyfriend. It just means he knows how to score easy points.

A good boyfriend wouldn't ever try and marginalize his girlfriends views by saying something like 'I'd dump you if you weren't homophobic.' That's controlling, insulting and demeaning. To not allow the mature discussion of any view that contradicts his own seems incredibly immature.

When I said he seemed anti-science I was referring to the 'pick and choose' approach that he and his family take. When science doesn't contradict his preexisting views, he's all for it, but as soon as any evidence that shows something in the bible isn't true, he allows emotion to rule out the evidence. This directly contradicts scientific method.

I think this guy sounds like a manipulating jerk who wants to own you, not be with you.

Obviously I am upset as I have had a close friend experience something similar. I never said anything then and regret it now. Sorry.
 
  • #14


Ibix said:
An observation: he does not respect your opinions (not just doesn't share them), and does not like you to express them. He shuts you down when you try to express contrary opinions, he does not engage. This is not a man who changes.

I would say that you need to decide whether or not you can live with the man he is today. If he is not susceptible to rational argument today he will not be tomorrow, either.

You are most definitely not past your prime in your twenties. For what it is worth, most of the new parents I know (am an only-slightly-used parent myself) are mid-thirties or later (definitely a biased sample, though). Three of the six couples that I know well enough to ask met after university.

I have one slightly odd question. Why did you write 'he plans on moving in with me when I go to grad school', rather than 'we are planning to move in together when I go to grad school'?
I said he instead of we because I am going to go somewhere to grad school and he will follow me. I appreciate the insight. I will address more of your post down below.

physicsboard said:
To expand on a point Ibix made, I don't think he really respects you if these two statements are both true.

'My boyfriend is a great boyfriend. He constantly tells me that I'm pretty, texts me often, is affectionate, always wants to spend time with me, cares about me etc.'

'My bf even joked once that he'd break up with me if I wasn't homophobic even though he knows that I have close gay friends. I asked him once why he thought being gay was a choice and he told me that he thinks it's just a fad. I then tried to reason with him but he just ignored me and changed the topic.'

He showers you with complements and spends time with you to win you over. But when it comes to actually listening to you and respecting your views, he completely neglects you and simply makes up the difference later. Complementing you does not make him a great boyfriend. It just means he knows how to score easy points.

A good boyfriend wouldn't ever try and marginalize his girlfriends views by saying something like 'I'd dump you if you weren't homophobic.' That's controlling, insulting and demeaning. To not allow the mature discussion of any view that contradicts his own seems incredibly immature.

When I said he seemed anti-science I was referring to the 'pick and choose' approach that he and his family take. When science doesn't contradict his preexisting views, he's all for it, but as soon as any evidence that shows something in the bible isn't true, he allows emotion to rule out the evidence. This directly contradicts scientific method.

I think this guy sounds like a manipulating jerk who wants to own you, not be with you.

Obviously I am upset as I have had a close friend experience something similar. I never said anything then and regret it now. Sorry.
It's hard to convey an accurate portrayal of my bf or our relationship in a few posts. He's really not overly controlling. I actually think that he might be conflict avoiding. We've never gotten into a fight and we've been together for almost a year (tbf we don't hang out very often because of school/distance). He told me he was just joking about the homophobic comment after I looked at him sternly. I think hanging out at his house makes it easier for him to share his views. Especially when he has his sister back him up. When we were at my house, my dad let out an anti-republican comment and he didn't say anything. Also, I've written about climate change on fb numerous times and he hasn't tried to debate me. My friends have also written bad things about candidates he supports and he's never commented back to them. I don't think he would try to force his views on me.

I wonder if he actually knows the extent to which I'm Liberal. I feel that I'm part of the problem because I'm way too conflict avoiding. The area I'm from is very conservative so I'm used to people with views similar to my bf and his family. In the past I've tried to avoid sharing my opinion with these people knowing the havoc it would cause. I'd either voice my views in a discrete manner or avoid the subject completely. I guess I fell into this pattern of behavior during our relationship. Part of the reason I act this way is because my mother is the complete opposite and she's put me in a lot of awkward situations in the past. In fact, we're actually estranged from most of my extended family. My parents are immigrants and I was always the loner in school and so I just hate constantly feeling isolated from the rest of society. Also, it's just hard to stand up for myself because he lives at home and we usually hang out at his house (my family lives in a small apartment) and most of his family is usually there. I would just hate to confront his whole family. I'm sure that his family might feel that I'm trying to control and corrupt him.

Also, I don't believe that his compliments are completely superfluous or that he gives them just to score points. I do think he exaggerates sometimes however I think he says those things because he truly does want to treat me well. He's a sweet guy to an extent. He's very sensitive and emotional as well which is what attracted me to him (I hate macho jock guys). I just think that he's been sheltered his whole life and is as a result a bit closed minded and indoctrinated. I don't think he's ever really questioned his beliefs and I think that doing so would severely compromise his sheltered view of life. He's closed minded, not a bad person. I do think that he probably won't change. I'm not sure whether or not I want to be with him still.
 
  • #15


Toph_fan said:
I said he instead of we because I am going to go somewhere to grad school and he will follow me. I appreciate the insight. I will address more of your post down below.


It's hard to convey an accurate portrayal of my bf or our relationship in a few posts. He's really not overly controlling. I actually think that he might be conflict avoiding. We've never gotten into a fight and we've been together for almost a year (tbf we don't hang out very often because of school/distance). He told me he was just joking about the homophobic comment after I looked at him sternly. I think hanging out at his house makes it easier for him to share his views. Especially when he has his sister back him up. When we were at my house, my dad let out an anti-republican comment and he didn't say anything. Also, I've written about climate change on fb numerous times and he hasn't tried to debate me. My friends have also written bad things about candidates he supports and he's never commented back to them. I don't think he would try to force his views on me.

I wonder if he actually knows the extent to which I'm Liberal. I feel that I'm part of the problem because I'm way too conflict avoiding. The area I'm from is very conservative so I'm used to people with views similar to my bf and his family. In the past I've tried to avoid sharing my opinion with these people knowing the havoc it would cause. I'd either voice my views in a discrete manner or avoid the subject completely. I guess I fell into this pattern of behavior during our relationship. Part of the reason I act this way is because my mother is the complete opposite and she's put me in a lot of awkward situations in the past. In fact, we're actually estranged from most of my extended family. My parents are immigrants and I was always the loner in school and so I just hate constantly feeling isolated from the rest of society. Also, it's just hard to stand up for myself because he lives at home and we usually hang out at his house (my family lives in a small apartment) and most of his family is usually there. I would just hate to confront his whole family. I'm sure that his family might feel that I'm trying to control and corrupt him.

Also, I don't believe that his compliments are completely superfluous or that he gives them just to score points. I do think he exaggerates sometimes however I think he says those things because he truly does want to treat me well. He's a sweet guy to an extent. He's very sensitive and emotional as well which is what attracted me to him (I hate macho jock guys). I just think that he's been sheltered his whole life and is as a result a bit closed minded and indoctrinated. I don't think he's ever really questioned his beliefs and I think that doing so would severely compromise his sheltered view of life. He's closed minded, not a bad person. I do think that he probably won't change. I'm not sure whether or not I want to be with him still.
The overly nice part really concerns me. That's exactly what controlling people do. They are super nice until they believe they have you, then it stops and what you've seen is what you get. Do not ever go into a relationship thinking you can change someone. If they are not NOW what you want, they never will be. Break it off.
 
  • #16


Your letter could have been written by my wife 40 years ago. At the time I was seriously handicapped by a very sheltered and religious upbringing. I needed a few decades to get out of that and finish growing up. Thankfully she had the patience to help me through that. Now things are very good.
 
  • #17


Thank you for clarifying the point regarding who is planning on him moving in. I note that your description of your boyfriend has raised similar questions in Evo's and physicsboard's minds to mine, although I intended to approach slightly slower. As you say, it is difficult to sum up a person or a relationship in a few words. Still, the words you chose to describe your boyfriend provoked the same reaction in three people. Perhaps we are wrong. I would ask the following, which might help you to frame a decision.

Is he lacking in emotional intelligence, as per your second post, or sensitive, as per your last?

Why did you start this thread at this time? Not why, or why here, but why yesterday?

Pkruse describes himself as similar to your boyfriend. Perhaps he could say whether he cut off his wife when she aired views he did not agree with, or if he engaged, argued, and thought.

You said you wondered if he knows your real views. Maybe he doesn't. In that case, I think it is only fair to him to let him know, assuming you intend to take it further. That means a 'difficult conversation', I'm afraid, but perhaps better to have it now than in ten years' time. Do have it outside his home, so he does not have to play to his family. Do have it somewhere you are safe. Paranoid? Probably, but the difference between 'probably' and 'certainly' is not one you want to explore here.

Lastly, I would seriously advise against moving in with him unless you are absolutely certain that this man is the one you want to spend the rest of your life with. Plenty of people who start with that conviction lose it; if you are not certain then you are setting yourself up for a difficult breakup. Again, 'I don't want you to move in with me right now' is likely to be a difficult conversation, but bluffing and hoping is not a winning strategy for either of you.

Edit: re-reading, I sound quite cold. It is much easier to be analytical about someone else's life than your own. However, honesty with yourself and your partner is very important. I stayed in a relationship six months longer than I should have done because I did not ask myself the hard questions, and the result was a breakup that was a lot messier than it would have been if I had used my head a little bit, instead of my heart (among other organs).
 
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  • #18


things done out of a feeling of desperation and weakness have a habit of turniing out not so well.

he just ignored me and changed the topic.

that raised my eyebrows when i read it but i kept quiet.

my own parents were one pliable and one controlling personality.

i got a lot of insight to my own personality from Melody Beatty's book Codependent No More.

what is important is not where you two are today but what direction you will grow as a couple. Scott Peck's "Road Less Travelled" has a good chapter on love, ch 2 i think

and being 3X your age i can assure you you are barely halfway to your prime.
i know a lady who had her first child at 50 - but that IS unusual. Older parents have more patience i think.

sigh --- life: we live it forward but understand it backward.
 
  • #19


Toph_fan said:
My boyfriend is a great boyfriend. He constantly tells me that I'm pretty, texts me often, is affectionate, always wants to spend time with me, cares about me etc. I could have never imagined that a guy would treat me as well as he does. He makes me feel like the only girl in the world. He's also responsible and very family oriented and he plans on moving in with me when I go to graduate school. We've discussed marriage a lot and he's told me multiple times that he wants to marry me. Also, his family is wonderful towards me. They've really made an effort to make me feel like part of the family.

Here's the main problem: our ideologies are completely different. I was raised in a secular household and religion has never been a part of my life. I'm liberal, I believe in climate change, I care for the environment and I'm not homophobic. He and his family are of course the opposite. My boyfriend doesn't believe in climate change and his sister has called people concerned about the environment hippies twice now. My bf thinks that climate change is just a big lie invented to make money. Both he and his sister believe that being gay is a choice and constantly make homophobic remarks. My bf even joked once that he'd break up with me if I wasn't homophobic even though he knows that I have close gay friends. I asked him once why he thought being gay was a choice and he told me that he thinks it's just a fad. I then tried to reason with him but he just ignored me and changed the topic. Also, his sister is a young Earth creationist even though she's really smart and a biology major. It just blows my mind how she can so readily disregard established scientific theories that conflict with her beliefs (such as the evidence for climate change, evolution etc). What's worse is that my boyfriend never wants to engage in friendly debates. I'm not one of those in your face debaters, I would just like to defend my position sometimes.

My mom doesn't think I'll be happy in the long run, however I think my bf is one of a kind. No guy has ever treated me this well before and I think that he will be a wonderful father. I also have already developed strong feelings for him. Also I'm almost 22 and I feel like time is passing me by. I will be entering grad school at almost 23 (I took time off after high school and I have a fall bday). It won't be long before I'm past my prime and I feel a lot of pressure to find a guy who is marriage material by then. I always read things on the internet about how women are past their prime after 25 and it makes me nervous (also, female fertility starts to decline in the late 20's). I kind of feel he's my last chance...

If you are able to adore him, and regard him as the centre of existence, where his opinons always prevail because you regard him as infinitely smarter than you, go ahead.

If not, drop him.
 
  • #20


Does he actively care about these views?
What are 'homophobic remarks'?
Does he hold any prejudice? Believing that being gay is a choice is not the same as being prejudiced, not being specifically 'for' or indifference is also not prejudice.
I've been called a racist because I don't like muliculturalism. Do I hold any prejudices? no. Is this in any way racist? no. Do I try and impose my views on other people? no.
"I then tried to reason with him but he just ignored me and changed the topic"
That says to me that he doesn't really care enough about it to argue with you about it. I've done similar in the past when I haven't really cared enough about an issue or what other people thought of it, to go into a debate which, when touchy subjects like these are involved, will probably end with someone getting upset.
 
  • #21


If you think differences are important, you guys cannot make it work. If you keep on bearing these thoughts yet not discuss openly with your bf neither act on your thoughts, you are just wasting his and your time.

Personally, I also think he doesn't care about his views as much you do. But, it's always hard to tell what kind of personality a person has without dealing with him/her in person.
 
  • #22


Evo said:
The overly nice part really concerns me. That's exactly what controlling people do. They are super nice until they believe they have you, then it stops and what you've seen is what you get.
This argument looks very very strange. The guy is being nice, and you're interpreting that as evidence that he's really not. If he had been not nice, wouldn't you have interpreted that as evidence of essentially the same thing? Maybe it's true that controlling people act nice, but do you know who else acts nice? People who are actually nice.

This guy is irrational, has some strange views about at least a few relevant topics, and is unwilling to consider arguments that could change his mind. That's the reality that Toph_fan has to deal with. No need to jump to conclusions about what else she may have to deal with.

I don't really have any advice for her. Well, maybe one. I've seen a few similar threads at the JREF forums (the James Randi Educational Foundation). There seem to be many people there who have had to deal with similar issues, so that might be a better place to discuss this.
 
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  • #23


I could never date a guy that hates gays, but that's just me.
 
  • #24


Do you want him to like/approve of gays, or just be polite to them? If he is a decent person then he can be polite even if he disapproves.
 
  • #25


Why does he need to be the one to change? It seems rather selfish that you haven't even tried hating gays yet. Both partners in a relationship need to make sacrifices. Some require less football, others less shopping. Sometimes, a successful relationship needs one partner to drop all compassion, consideration, rationality, respect, and altruism, in order for it to work out.

/sarcasm

... Honestly, sit him down and talk it out with him. If he isn't willing to have a serious conversation about your opposing points of view, then tell him to leave you alone and find somebody else.
 
  • #26


Fredrik said:
This argument looks very very strange. The guy is being nice, and you're interpreting that as evidence that he's really not. If he had been not nice, wouldn't you have interpreted that as evidence of essentially the same thing? Maybe it's true that controlling people act nice, but do you know who else acts nice? People who are actually nice.
To me, red flags pop up when someone says nice things to you but doesn't respect your views or thoughts compared to their own.
 
  • #27


physicsboard said:
To me, red flags pop up when someone says nice things to you but doesn't respect your views or thoughts compared to their own.

bit too much of speculation here?

As I said before, she is just wasting her time over-analyzing every single word her boyfriend says yet not discussing it. And, it's bit too much of a stretch to make statements about a person based on what someone else says. I feel sorry for the anonymous guy :smile:
 
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  • #28


physicsboard said:
To me, red flags pop up when someone says nice things to you but doesn't respect your views or thoughts compared to their own.

She doesn't want to respect his views, does the OP make red flags pop up?
The only difference is that you agree with her views more than his so you see his reluctance to accept her views as alien where as her reluctance to accept his views is perfectly normal.
 
  • #29


physicsboard said:
To me, red flags pop up when someone says nice things to you but doesn't respect your views or thoughts compared to their own.
I can see why "doesn't respect your views" would pop a red flag in this case, but you're suggesting that being nice pops another red flag. That doesn't make any sense to me.
 
  • #30


Ibix said:
Thank you for clarifying the point regarding who is planning on him moving in. I note that your description of your boyfriend has raised similar questions in Evo's and physicsboard's minds to mine, although I intended to approach slightly slower. As you say, it is difficult to sum up a person or a relationship in a few words. Still, the words you chose to describe your boyfriend provoked the same reaction in three people. Perhaps we are wrong. I would ask the following, which might help you to frame a decision.

Is he lacking in emotional intelligence, as per your second post, or sensitive, as per your last?

Why did you start this thread at this time? Not why, or why here, but why yesterday?

Pkruse describes himself as similar to your boyfriend. Perhaps he could say whether he cut off his wife when she aired views he did not agree with, or if he engaged, argued, and thought.

You said you wondered if he knows your real views. Maybe he doesn't. In that case, I think it is only fair to him to let him know, assuming you intend to take it further. That means a 'difficult conversation', I'm afraid, but perhaps better to have it now than in ten years' time. Do have it outside his home, so he does not have to play to his family. Do have it somewhere you are safe. Paranoid? Probably, but the difference between 'probably' and 'certainly' is not one you want to explore here.

Lastly, I would seriously advise against moving in with him unless you are absolutely certain that this man is the one you want to spend the rest of your life with. Plenty of people who start with that conviction lose it; if you are not certain then you are setting yourself up for a difficult breakup. Again, 'I don't want you to move in with me right now' is likely to be a difficult conversation, but bluffing and hoping is not a winning strategy for either of you.

Edit: re-reading, I sound quite cold. It is much easier to be analytical about someone else's life than your own. However, honesty with yourself and your partner is very important. I stayed in a relationship six months longer than I should have done because I did not ask myself the hard questions, and the result was a breakup that was a lot messier than it would have been if I had used my head a little bit, instead of my heart (among other organs).
You don't sound cold at all. By sensitive I mean his emotions are easily affected. He never gets angry, but he has gotten sad/cried several times in front of me. Maybe he's not so emotionally unintelligent compared to the average guy his age but that's not saying much (maybe I'm stereotyping here). I'm also pretty sure that he's concerned about my emotional well-being. Also, I started it the other day because he kept complaining about the whole Chickfila protest (he had some good points tbf).
arildno said:
If you are able to adore him, and regard him as the centre of existence, where his opinons always prevail because you regard him as infinitely smarter than you, go ahead.

If not, drop him.
Our relationship is not like that. He doesn't act like he's superior to me. In fact he often asks me what I see in him. He has low self-esteem. He often tells me how much smarter I am than him and definitely not in a suck up way.
genericusrnme said:
Does he actively care about these views?
What are 'homophobic remarks'?
Does he hold any prejudice? Believing that being gay is a choice is not the same as being prejudiced, not being specifically 'for' or indifference is also not prejudice.
I've been called a racist because I don't like muliculturalism. Do I hold any prejudices? no. Is this in any way racist? no. Do I try and impose my views on other people? no.
"I then tried to reason with him but he just ignored me and changed the topic"
That says to me that he doesn't really care enough about it to argue with you about it. I've done similar in the past when I haven't really cared enough about an issue or what other people thought of it, to go into a debate which, when touchy subjects like these are involved, will probably end with someone getting upset.
He doesn't seem to hate gays he just "doesn't approve of their lifestyle". He believes they deserve to be treated well just like any other human being and that "one should love the person but not what they do".
He admits that all of the gay people he's met have been great people, he just doesn't understand why they "chose" that path.
rootX said:
If you think differences are important, you guys cannot make it work. If you keep on bearing these thoughts yet not discuss openly with your bf neither act on your thoughts, you are just wasting his and your time.

Personally, I also think he doesn't care about his views as much you do. But, it's always hard to tell what kind of personality a person has without dealing with him/her in person.
I agree, he probably doesn't care about his views as much as I do. He knows I'm not religious and he knows I have gay friends and that I don't think it's a choice. The real question I had was whether I was putting too much importance on my opinion.

Fredrik said:
This argument looks very very strange. The guy is being nice, and you're interpreting that as evidence that he's really not. If he had been not nice, wouldn't you have interpreted that as evidence of essentially the same thing? Maybe it's true that controlling people act nice, but do you know who else acts nice? People who are actually nice.

This guy is irrational, has some strange views about at least a few relevant topics, and is unwilling to consider arguments that could change his mind. That's the reality that Toph_fan has to deal with. No need to jump to conclusions about what else she may have to deal with.

I don't really have any advice for her. Well, maybe one. I've seen a few similar threads at the JREF forums (the James Randi Educational Foundation). There seem to be many people there who have had to deal with similar issues, so that might be a better place to discuss this.
I agree, he really IS a nice guy. Even my mom agrees and she's good at reading people (I know that's not proof). He's not even that irrational, just indoctrinated. Also, I found out that he believes in evolution so that's good.

DaleSpam said:
Do you want him to like/approve of gays, or just be polite to them? If he is a decent person then he can be polite even if he disapproves.
I guess I want him to like/approve of them. I want him to realize that being gay is not a choice. He is polite to everyone. He believes in loving the person not their sin. I just want him to be more open-minded and less indoctrinated.
Evo said:
The overly nice part really concerns me. That's exactly what controlling people do. They are super nice until they believe they have you, then it stops and what you've seen is what you get. Do not ever go into a relationship thinking you can change someone. If they are not NOW what you want, they never will be. Break it off.

He really is not the controlling type. That much I'm almost certain of. I think he just tries to avoid conflict by avoiding my questions. I do think that people can change. He's only 21. However, I'm assuming that he won't change a lot.
 
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  • #31


genericusrnme said:
She doesn't want to respect his views, does the OP make red flags pop up?
The only difference is that you agree with her views more than his so you see his reluctance to accept her views as alien where as her reluctance to accept his views is perfectly normal.
That's true. I mean you can argue that he's prejudiced and that I have the morally correct view but he doesn't really see it that way. He comes from a Christian fundamentalist family. Religion is a huge part of their life. He was raised to believe that being gay is a choice. None of the homophobic comments he's made have been excessively vile. Most of his comments have been about how he believes in the biblical definition of marriage and how he feels that Christian fundamentalists are being persecuted for their beliefs by liberals. He's also said how he doesn't know why anyone would choose to be gay and has several times said he doesn't "approve of their lifestyle". He's been raised to believe these things so I don't hold it against him too much but it does bother me that he's not open-minded. I just don't know whether or not I'm making too big of an issue out of this. I wish I could get him to read some Richard Dawkins stuff.
 
  • #32


I'm in a similar situation, except the homophobic thing isn't a problem to me. I've been dating a christian girl for over a year now. She's very much convinced about her beliefs, and I am very anti-religion. We also argue over political stuff - I hate war and warmongers and her family is mostly military.

We get along great, and it's so easy to convince yourself that it will work anyways, and maybe it would, but I think we will both be happier in the long run with someone else. I don't want my children lied to and scared into believing in God and religion, and she doesn't want her children to burn in hell.
 
  • #33


Jimmy Snyder said:
I could never date a guy that hates gays, but that's just me.

I agree with this, but probably not for the same reason. I have no great humanitarian streak, and don't share any real solidarity with the GLBT community (largely due to lack of personal contact), but I genuinely can't comprehend expending the energy required to maintain a strong emotional opposition to something as utterly insignificant as sexual orientation, and I tend to be deeply suspicious of those who do.

Here we have someone who is deeply religious, believes that scientists in every branch of science are engaged in an organized and coordinated conspiracy to create the illusion of climate change (for some malevolent purpose), and has what is almost certainly a deeply political opposition to environmentalism (again, likely involving some malevolent conspiracy among scientists and environmentalists). It all strikes me as some sort of intellectual deficiency, especially given that he absolutely refuses to engages in any for of rational argument.

OP: How do you expect to have any interesting conversations at all with this person (ever) when he's incapable of or disinterested in rational argument? "Strong feelings" aren't enough; eventually the infatuation will pass and you'll be left with two personalities who can, ideally, derive pleasure from each other's company and navigate the many obstacles of life together. I don't think you have any of that (and I don't think he's capable of that).
 
  • #34


Jimmy Snyder said:
I could never date a guy that hates gays, but that's just me.

Hahaha That's awesome. Well said.

Toph... I understand and can relate to your situation, but I honestly think that you need to really try to discuss you concerns with your boyfriend, especially since you feel so strongly about your views. If he really loves you (which it seems like he does!) he will want to understand your perspectives more and talk it out. I think you guys can make it work but you really have to talk about things openly. Otherwise, I feel that these underlying issues will only fester until they become huge problems... especially once there are kids involved.

On another note... you are NOT past your prime! I met my sugar dumpling (and we are getting married next summer!) only once I really stopped putting some much effort into finding "the one." I met him after college, on a soccer field. I am 24 and he is 29 and more perfect for me than I could have imagined a guy could be. It was only when I met him that I realized how unperfect for me my last serious boyfriend was and how glad I was that I didn't settle.

In conclusion... Try talking about things openly but don't feel trapped. If you are amazing and single, there is definitely someone else out there who is amazing and single and wondering if you are out there for them.

Good luck :)
 
  • #35


Toph_fan said:
I agree, he really IS a nice guy. Even my mom agrees and she's good at reading people (I know that's not proof). He's not even that irrational, just indoctrinated. Also, I found out that he believes in evolution so that's good.


I guess I want him to like/approve of them. I want him to realize that being gay is not a choice. He is polite to everyone. He believes in loving the person not their sin. I just want him to be more open-minded and less indoctrinated.


He really is not the controlling type. That much I'm almost certain of. I think he just tries to avoid conflict by avoiding my questions. I do think that people can change. He's only 21. However, I'm assuming that he won't change a lot.

The more you describe him the more he seems like an essentially nice person who is constrained by his religion to hold an official stance of disapproval of gays. Under these circumstances the disapproval strikes me as being skin deep and not very indicative of the kind of person he is.

I think, but I'm not sure, I think your question might boil down to, not whether you and him will be able to get along in the future, but whether or not you'll be able to take him anywhere. Hehe.
 

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