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Eric Petersen


He Said- Dating and Religion

I was sitting in a mixed group of friends several years ago next to a woman that I was chatting up for about an hour. We liked each other, and we were the only two that were outsiders to most of the group. Eventually the topic of conversation turned to confirmations and the events that surrounded each of theirs respectively. As we both tried to awkwardly stay away from participating I said to her:" I don't know what they're talking about, cuz I'm not catholic." she smiled broadly and said "neither am I".
We exchanged numbers and soon found ourselves on several dates. We got along really well, and if I ever had a "type" she was it- to a tee. I'm not sure how it happened but one evening we got on the topic of "party music" and she began to tell me about all the great songs that the DJ had played at her batmitzva. I was enthralled as she glowed while telling me the story... then she asked about mine.
"My barmitzva?” I said, "I didn't have one, we protestants get baptized as young adults and don't really have big parties to celebrate them... but I like classic rock." I watched her smile dim as I explained and I knew there had been a big misunderstanding. As the next several minutes passed she explained how her mother had kept a very strict, very traditional Jewish house and that since I wasn't of the same faith, she would have an uphill fight to convince her mother to accept me. We, as a couple, were doomed. She eventually stopped answering my calls and we lost touch.
As you may imagine it hurt, badly. I had lost the chance at having a great girl in my life over something that I had absolutely control of, but it taught me something about myself: that I hate the things that separate us as people! I could never understand why people ask a question about your religion, or ethnicity, or politics, or about the neighborhood reside, in an effort to form a bias opinion of you.
So, whether you are Baptist (which I am) Jewish (which she is) Muslim, Hindu, scientologist, agnostic, atheist, or otherwise... I don't care... and you shouldn’t either!
It is the walls that we place between ourselves that are the reasons that we stay unhappy, and in our ignorance, believe we're not.

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12/14/2009 4:14PM
He Said- Dating and Religion
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