cross with friend

(76 Posts)
pinkpaws Mon 04-Mar-13 18:22:54

Hi i want to ask if you think i am being unreasonable was out a few nights ago with a group of people and after a few drinks the topic became about religion i am catholic the friend in question is not. We are good friends as are our children and i am very fond of both her kids. I said when my DD grows up and met someone i would if it where my choice which i know it is not i would rather she married an other catholic. But as long as she was happy that would be fine. my friend to cut a long story short was very cross and said that ment i didnt think her kids where as good as mine I have no idea how she came to that conclusion . this is a women who is well educated and has sense well i thought she had sense . please advise

Crinkle77 Mon 04-Mar-13 18:27:40

I think it is a rather outdated and narrow minded attitude to be honest. What difference would it make if someone was Catholic, Protestant or some other religion?

wigglesrock Mon 04-Mar-13 18:32:08

She does have sense, you in a very round about way said that if you had your choice you would rather your children married people who weren't like hers. I'm a Catholic I couldn't give 2 shiney shites who my children shared their lives with as long as they are loved and respected. How would you feel if one of your children were gay or chose not to get married?

sooperdooper Mon 04-Mar-13 18:32:22

YABU I agree with your friend, what difference does it make what religion someone is, if you really only want her to be happy then it would make no difference whatsoever

I think she does have sense, in thinking that people are all equal, regardless of religion and being a particular religion doesn't automatically make you a nicer/better person as a partner

TheVermiciousKnid Mon 04-Mar-13 18:33:09

I suppose it's a bit like saying to her that ideally you wouldn't want your children to marry any of her children... How would you feel if she said to you that she wouldn't want her children to marry Catholics?

PopeBenedictsP45 Mon 04-Mar-13 18:33:52

I think the argument's academic as you won't have a say in who your DD marries. But I also think this is a narrow minded thing to say.

TheVermiciousKnid Mon 04-Mar-13 18:34:13

And yes, in my opinion she does have a lot of sense!

puds11isNAUGHTYnotNAICE Mon 04-Mar-13 18:35:54

Never discuss religion or politics whilst drinking!

I think your view point is very dated and pointless, however I am not religious.

I can see why she was upset, you did accidentally infer that a non catholic is not as good.

pinkpaws Mon 04-Mar-13 18:36:45

I did say as long as she was happy i didnt care but i have a right to voice my beliefs where others think they are outdated or narrow minded and for the record i have no problem with gay people or if indeed she herself was gay later in life.

pinkpaws Mon 04-Mar-13 18:41:19

I fail to see how my beliefs make her or anyone else so insecure . but you are right i will NEVER again talk about religion in her company.

MaryRobinson Mon 04-Mar-13 18:42:01

I don't think it is necessarily narrow minded. The OP said that all other things being equal this is a preference she would have and acknowledges that it is purely hypothetical.

I think people are attaching way too much significance to it and making extrapolations that just aren't supportable.

Crinkle77 Mon 04-Mar-13 18:42:04

Who said anything about gay people or are you feeling a bit paranoid that the discussion will turn in this direction?

pinkpaws Mon 04-Mar-13 18:43:18

I fail to see how my beliefs make her or anyone else so insecure . but you are right i will NEVER again talk about religion in her company.

wigglesrock Mon 04-Mar-13 18:43:31

No, in fairness to the OP it was me that mentioned how she would feel if her child was gay or chose not to get married, not her.

My husband is Catholic. I'm atheist (baptised/confirmed CofE. DD is of unknown faith, being 9 months old.

My smugly Catholic mother-in-law is pretty disapproving of my lack of faith and it's just one of the reasons we have a very strained relationship.

Why would a Catholic son-in-law be preferable?

pinkpaws Mon 04-Mar-13 18:47:44

no not paranoid crinkle77 responding to a comment made

pinkpaws Mon 04-Mar-13 18:50:11

A cathoilc partner would be my choice because its how my daughter is raised and it would again be my choice which it is of course not that any grand children as be raised by two catholic parents.

signorapacino Mon 04-Mar-13 18:54:24

I totally get what your saying I'm a catholic who married another catholic and it just made life easy from the point of view of what church to get married in and what school to send our kids to. Have seen friends having to have huge debates and arguments with their partners over theses things when they've had a different religion. So therefore I would prefer my kids if they keep their faith to marry someone of the same religion. Your friend probably never got what way you were saying this and seems to have gone on the defensive. I don't have anything against any other religion I just purely think it would make life easier all round.

pinkpaws Mon 04-Mar-13 18:54:39

It would seem to me that you may have an Opinion in this country as long as its the same as everyone else.

wigglesrock Mon 04-Mar-13 18:55:55

I'm a Catholic, I married one, our children are Catholics but my husband isn't one any more - he had his fill of religion as a whole. Our children aren't raised in a particularly Catholic home, to be very honest I'm not really sure what difference it makes.

pinkpaws Mon 04-Mar-13 18:57:21

At last a voice of reason thank you signorapacino

pinkpaws Mon 04-Mar-13 18:59:44

I guess it only makes a difference if your faith matters to you and as a family

signorapacino Mon 04-Mar-13 18:59:47

Your welcome honey wink

signorapacino Mon 04-Mar-13 19:00:47

You're blush

TidyDancer Mon 04-Mar-13 19:01:05

I understand what you're saying, but it was an incredibly clumsy way of saying it, so it's easy to see why your friend took offence. She is not in the wrong.

Hypothetical conversations of this nature never turn out well ime. Tbf you don't even know what religion (if any) your DD will subscribe to.

The general rule with expressing opinions, btw, would be do not share one in a way that causes unnecessary offence. It's not about it being the same as everyone else's.

toffeelolly Mon 04-Mar-13 19:03:33

YABU. Think your friend had every right to say what she said, think you are the one in the wrong !

TheVermiciousKnid Mon 04-Mar-13 19:06:45

Of course you can have an opinion - people are just trying to explain why your friend might have got upset! It was maybe a little tactless to voice that opinion in her presence? Of course you're still entitled to do so, but don't be surprised if some people (like your friend) get upset.

pinkpaws Mon 04-Mar-13 19:06:52

As you where not with me when opinion was shared i fail to see how you can say it was clumsy or said in a way that could cause offence. It was a topic that many where taking part in.

pinkpaws Mon 04-Mar-13 19:08:47

I take your point Thevermiciousknid but she was by not by far the only non catholic but the only one to take offence.

TidyDancer Mon 04-Mar-13 19:09:56

You're being too defensive, you asked for opinions, I gave you mine. You can't expect wooly responses when you post in AIBU.

I can only go on your writing tone and your descriptions, and I stand by what I said. It sounds clumsy.

And clearly it was said in a way that could cause offence, since it did just that.

pinkpaws Mon 04-Mar-13 19:14:03

As you where not with me at time of comment tinydancer i fail to see how you can say it was clumsy or offence. She was not the only non catholic person there but the only one to take offence.

pinkpaws Mon 04-Mar-13 19:16:09

It was as it turns out offence to one person no one else . And if truth be told i am and was more dissapointed in her that cross.

ginmakesitallok Mon 04-Mar-13 19:16:48

Of course you can have an opinion, doesn't mean that purple have to agree with it. Coming from northern Ireland and setting first hand how sectarianism tears communities apart my opinion is that you are being unreasonable.

ginmakesitallok Mon 04-Mar-13 19:17:09

People not purple...

ginmakesitallok Mon 04-Mar-13 19:17:48

You are disappointed in her??

after a few drinks the topic became about religion

^^ this is the problem....a seriously bad topic for the pub IMHO

kerala Mon 04-Mar-13 19:21:59

YABU. Tactless and rude thing to say to a non Catholic. Yes you are saying essentially that if your child ended up with hers you would be upset I can see why she was miffed. And what do you mean by "disappointed" in her?

YouTheCat Mon 04-Mar-13 19:24:46

I'm an atheist. But if, as a Catholic, you would prefer your dd to marry another Catholic then that is your view. It's not as if you're saying you wouldn't be happy if she married someone who wasn't Catholic so I can't see what anyone is up in arms about tbh.

Your friend has an opinion too but I think she has the wrong end of the stick and I really don't think you were saying non-Catholics are not as good as you or your kids. Bit of an over-reaction on her part imo.

TidyDancer Mon 04-Mar-13 19:25:57

I saw your comment the first time....and I still stand by what I said. You just need to accept that you were (albeit unintentionally) in the wrong, and apologise to your friend.

WilsonFrickett Mon 04-Mar-13 19:26:35

If her children were black and you'd said you would prefer your DD's to marry white people and bring your DGDs up in a white culture, do you think she may have had a point?

I suspect that's not what you meant, but it's likely what she heard.

KatyTheCleaningLady Mon 04-Mar-13 19:26:52

I wouldn't feel bad if a Jewish woman said that she hopes her children marry Jews. I would say the same thing about any religion. I think she made the choice to find offense.

signorapacino Mon 04-Mar-13 19:32:13

What an over reaction here!!! op never said she would disown her child or said anything negative about any other religion. She just stated a preference and her friend totally overreacted imo as are a lot of people on here. Op ynbu!!!!!! So many of you are just failing to get the point of what she is trying to say.

AmberLeaf Mon 04-Mar-13 19:35:04

YABU and it is very telling of how this thread will go that you said 'voice of reason' to the person whos views are the same as yours.

What you said infers that you think catholics are better and preferable to non catholics.

Yes to what WilsonFrickett said, that was what came to my mind when I read this, I remember people saying that years ago, 'Id rather my kids marry someone of their own colour' etc that sort of thing.

I wouldn't advise guilt tripping your children over who they choose to love TBH.

signorapacino Mon 04-Mar-13 19:39:11

Amber it's happens to be a coincidence our religion is the same had I been Jewish say I would have posted the same post cause I get what she is saying. Also op has never said at any point that she would tell her child she would rather they marry someone of the same religion she just said she'd prefer it.

flangledoodle Mon 04-Mar-13 19:39:56

Two problems here : 1 - alcohol. 2. Your atheiest friend may feel defensive about her atheism and so easily took offense. I recently told someone I didn't believe in God and they laughed in my face. It would not be as acceptable to laugh at someone for their faith.

AmberLeaf Mon 04-Mar-13 19:53:02

Not criticising your post/opinion signorapacino. Just that this is AIBU and the OP doesn't seem to want to hear anything other than people agreeing with her, hence her 'voice of reason' comment.

signorapacino Mon 04-Mar-13 19:55:09

Fair dos amber.

NeverFinishWhatYouStarted Mon 04-Mar-13 20:00:38

Speaking as someone who has been on the receiving end of religious prejudice, YABU. More than one boyfriend enjoyed my company but didn't want their mothers to know they were seeing me because I'm a non-Catholic in a Catholic country. And after hearing one colleague's disapproval of her son's LTR with an Anglican girlfriend, I've never mentioned in work that I'm not RC either.

Sadly, your views will probably filter through to your children with similar consequences.

BandersnatchCummerbund Mon 04-Mar-13 20:05:16

I think she was being nonsensical, really. But I would also just shrug, put it down to experience and forget about it.

bruxeur Mon 04-Mar-13 20:10:43

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signorapacino Mon 04-Mar-13 20:15:23

Brux what a low classless cheap shot you should be ashamed.

bruxeur Mon 04-Mar-13 20:19:26

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madamezouzou Mon 04-Mar-13 20:45:03

It's not exactly groundbreaking stuff, is it?

Religious parent hopes child will grow up to marry someone of same religion shocker!!

You haven't said you wouldn't allow her to marry outside of the religion. Storm in a teacup.

DioneTheDiabolist Mon 04-Mar-13 22:38:51

The OP never said that she would be upset if her DD married someone who wasn't Catholic.hmm

LadyApricot Mon 04-Mar-13 22:51:42

Your religion is important to you, dont feel guilty speaking the truth about how you feel. I think your friend took it way too personally.. you said if your daughter married a catholic you'd be happier - not because they are 'better' in some way but because you feel they could share their faith together and for some, that's important. This just wasn't understood.
I think more people should respect others faiths. Sadly it seems almost out of date or unfashionable to be a catholic now in the uk
I married a Hindu and I am catholic. It doesn't mean that my faith is compromised and our children enjoy learning about the different faiths but ultimately it's their choice once they grow older to decide.

WafflyVersatile Mon 04-Mar-13 23:18:23

Putting aside my views on religion which are not very complimentary I entirely understand that if your religion is important to you (is it? Do you go to church?) and if you want your children brought up as catholic and your grandchildren brought up as catholic your preference would also be that your child's partner would be catholic. It's just easier. Probably. In theory. I mean he might be catholic but not bother his arse, or catholic but hate the church and not want his children taken to mass, or he might be protestant but happy for his partner to take the kids to church and not really care one way or the other etc.

I don't think that means you think you are better. Although surely if you think catholicism is better (despite all the evidence to the contrary) then you should.

I don't believe in any god and I'd prefer any children of mine to be the same and their partner and my grandchildren. I do think atheism is better but that doesn't mean I think any atheist is a better person than any catholic.

I didn't quite manage to keep my views out of that, did I?

DioneTheDiabolist Mon 04-Mar-13 23:25:58

No you didn't Waffly, but you did sum up beautifully what most parents think and want for their DCs and DGCs regardless of religious belief or lack thereof. It's not about believing that My God / No God is better. It's just that shared views make child rearing easier.

zipzap Tue 05-Mar-13 00:10:15

OP, how would you have felt if the conversation had gone the other way and your friend had said that, when her dc grow up, she's keeping her fingers crossed that they don't get married to Catholics because she doesn't want to think that she would have grandchildren that are forced to believe in some imaginary friend because of the partner, how can an educated person believe that there is some god figure out there controlling our lives, it's ridiculous... [or insert any other belief that an atheist might have about Catholic beliefs - I'm not saying I agree with it, just putting it here for the sake of the discussion]

If you think that if your friend said the above to you and you thought it was an offensive comment about your beliefs and thoughts and that it shows that they think you are not as good as them, then that is exactly what your friend thought you were saying about her and her family, albeit with the belief systems reversed. And that is why she found what you were saying so hurtful.

Because although you did say that it would be ok for your dd to marry someone who was not catholic, you would prefer her to find a catholic. Assuming she had a son who was of the right age and who your dd liked enough to get married, you'd be thinking 'great, but if only he was catholic he would be perfect...' and therefore again you are saying that you think your dd could have done better.

Maybe she is sitting at home thinking 'this is a women who is well educated and has sense well i thought she had sense' about your beliefs too - would that surprise or hurt you if you thought that that's the reaction your comments caused about you?

I can see that you probably didn't mean to be insulting when you made the comment, but it is a bit worrying that you believe it so much to the exclusion of all else that you don't seem to see that, even if unintended, the comment did have the scope to be offensive if said to someone who wasn't catholic. So other people didn't react to what you said - maybe they don't like discussing religious things, or thought something but didn't say it. There's no reason to be disappointed in her - it's her beliefs and surely they are just as valid as yours. If anything your reaction to this could suggest that her reaction is making you insecure in your beliefs...

I'm cultural CofE by background, relatively little religious background from home although some strong stuff at school that they tried to indoctrinate us into. DH is Catholic. However we married in a CofE church, and have also had christened our dc as CofE. That was my choice - despite apparently there supposedly is something that says if you are catholic you are supposed to get married in a catholic church and promise to bring your dc up as catholics, even if your partner is not catholic, I actively didn't want to bring my dc up as catholic. Of DH and many other friends I have that are catholic very few of them have actively searched out a catholic partner, even fewer of them have ended up with a catholic partner and like me, none of them have gone down the bringing up the kids as catholics route.

I'm not really sure why I'm putting this here - just that if I had had parents (or if dh had or any of our catholic friends) that were so into their religion that they would actively like us to pick a partner who was of the same religion (whether implicitly or explicitly) then lots of good marriages would never have happened which would have been a real shame.

DioneTheDiabolist Tue 05-Mar-13 00:32:56

Zipzap the OP didn't say that she didn't want her DD to marry an Athiest, other Christian, Hindu etc.

She did say that she would prefer her to marry someone with the same faith. They are not the same thing.

AmberLeaf Tue 05-Mar-13 00:36:40

They are very close though Dione.

Zipzap good post.

BadLad Tue 05-Mar-13 00:38:44

"It's not exactly groundbreaking stuff, is it?

Religious parent hopes child will grow up to marry someone of same religion shocker!!

You haven't said you wouldn't allow her to marry outside of the religion. Storm in a teacup. "

I agree with this.

DioneTheDiabolist Tue 05-Mar-13 00:49:25

Not really Amber, it's just about easiness and practicalities. Not about believing that others are less. I would have no problem with an Athiest/Hindu/Jewish parent saying the same.

RaspberryRuffle Tue 05-Mar-13 01:11:23

YABU to ask for opinions and then profess to be disappointed in your friend, when by reading the replies you can see that several people here would be offended by what you said...just because your friend was the only one on the night in question to be offended doesn't mean her feelings are not valid. There are also people who don't see what you said as a big deal, that's fine for them not to be offended, but you asked if you were being unreasonable and on balance I would say yes.
You have effectively said her children would not be as good a choice as marriage material for your DD.

I also thought of how it would sound if you replaced "i would rather she married an other catholic" with "another (insert race/job/class)" and it's obvious that you consider this choice superior.

BramshawHill Tue 05-Mar-13 11:25:42

I kind of see what you were trying to say (I think) but it IS unreasonable to ask for opinions on this board then dismiss anything that doesn't agree with you.

OP - was I being unreasonable?
Replier - Yes
OP - no, I wasn't, you weren't there.

See how ridiculous that is?
Next time just steer clear of religious discussions fuelled by drink.

Manchesterhistorygirl Tue 05-Mar-13 11:35:15

The others present may have decided you were being unreasonably, but kept that opinion to themselves so as to prevent this exact situation.

Btw you are being vu. Disappointed. Really?

My mum used to work in a school and one of the families were from Northern Ireland. He as catholic and she was Protestant, they had had to come to England to avoid persecution because they had married "outside" their faith. sad This is the problem with waving your religion around instead of quietly believing in your personal god or not.

zipzap Tue 05-Mar-13 12:03:16

Amberleaf Thank you! blush

Dione - I know the OP said she preferred her dd to marry somebody who was Catholic - I even said that in my post. And my comments apply to that preference.

I've just re-read my post again to check - I don't think I did say that she didn't want her dd to marry someone that was non-catholic (losing track of all the negatives there!). I did use the phrases 'keeping her fingers crossed' and 'actively like us to pick a partner who was of the same religion (whether implicitly or explicitly)' - both of which to me are closer to 'prefer' than 'didn't want' so apologies if they read differently to you and caused confusion.

(The only time I mentioned not wanting was regarding me, not the op, not wanting to bring my dc as catholic, which I had already flagged was a bit of an aside).

quesadilla Tue 05-Mar-13 12:12:21

I can see both sides of this: I understand there may be an advantage to two people from similar family and religious backgrounds getting married so its an understandable practical wish but surely you must be able to see that to another non-Catholic it does look a little bit superior. The unspoken assumption is that non-Catholics are inherently inferior. I know that isn't what you said and probably isn't what you meant but to a non-Catholic its hard to put that aside.
Are you a serious, committed practising Catholic or just a "cultural" one? If its the former it's more understandable in a way as your faith presumably required this attitude. If the latter I think it's likely you will find people may be offended by this.

LoopDeLoops Tue 05-Mar-13 12:31:50

If someone asked me this question, I would reply with "I would prefer my children to marry an atheist".

If pressed on why, I would answer "because I would like them to marry an intelligent free thinker".

So, I can (sort of) understand why you think you are justified in your response.


You feel 'disappointed' - YABU. What a twattish thing to say

Pigsmummy Tue 05-Mar-13 12:45:44

I have been on the receiving end of some catholic bashing from a pissed person, the next day they were mortified and apologised, end of. Although had I not received an apology I wouldn't have been any different about it, people have opinions and I am not apologising for mine or defending my beliefs. I wouldn't bother giving this another thought, don't mention it or religion in general with this woman again.

I think that your comment was taken wrongly by her, the comment wasn't much differant than lightheartly saying that you want your son/daughter to marry a millionaire/footballer/royalty you are not going to enforce your views and it's hardly news that people sometimes prefer to marry within faith groups!

wineandroses Tue 05-Mar-13 12:46:36

I am not quite sure why your friend took your comment so personally. I have friends who are muslim and hindu. They are all of the view that they would prefer their children to marry people of the same faith and that there would be ructions in their families if anyone married outside their faith. I don't find this personally offensive (I and my family are not of either faith), though I must admit, it made me feel a bit sad that they genuinely believed that they should exclude so many people from being potential partners just because of their faith. I respect their views; they want to keep their faith and traditions alive in their families. But such views are by their very nature excluding of the rest of us, and that's a shame.

GhoulWithADragonTattoo Tue 05-Mar-13 12:55:20

I can understand your preference for you child to marry someone of your religion but I do think you should keep it to yourself. As soon as you voice it then you will inevitably upset others, as your sensible friend shows...

MTBMummy Tue 05-Mar-13 13:09:12

Many years ago I dated a Catholic guy, we got on well, had similar interests, but 2 years into the relationship I questioned why I had not met his family, he announced his mum would never approve of me because I wasn't Catholic and he'd been keeping his relationship with me from his family, because he was ashamed.

This is exactly what annoys me about religious types, they try to force their views on everyone else, and anyone who doesn't measure up is considered a lower human being.

crashdoll Tue 05-Mar-13 13:37:42

If pressed on why, I would answer "because I would like them to marry an intelligent free thinker".

You feel 'disappointed' - YABU. What a twattish thing to say

Oh the irony of telling someone else they said something twattish! Nice, sweeping statement there. And no, before you attack me, I am in no way a believer of any religion.

LoopDeLoops Tue 05-Mar-13 23:10:33

I know, crash doll, that was exactly my point.

Jinsei Tue 05-Mar-13 23:43:17

I'm really surprised that the OP has been given such a hard time tbh. DH and I have an interfaith marriage (well, I'm agnostic these days smile ) and we rub along quite happily together despite our different traditions - we just have twice as many festivals to celebrate. grin However, if your religion is very important to you, there's nothing wrong with hoping that your kids will marry into the same faith - you're not saying that you'd cut them off if they chose to marry someone else!

Big overreaction on your friend's part in my opinion, and from a lot of MNetters.

MidnightMasquerader Tue 05-Mar-13 23:56:54

I'm pret sure that MIL sometimes secretly gets a bit wistful that DH didn't marry a nice Catholic girl. Although, if I'm honest, she could probably have made her peace with the non-Catholicism, if I hadn't moved him to the other side of the world! in all fairness though - she has been utterly magnanimous about both.

OP - YANBU to have a preference for your children. We all do, about all sorts of things - most of which we probably have zero control over. It's nice to wish, though.

Y are BU, though, to voice that opinion and to fully and unquestioningly expect it to be well-received. Come on - since when has religion ever been a nice, benign, bonding topic?! grin <hoots>

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