Friday, April 06, 2012

Ask a Bougie Chick - Why is Easter such a big deal?


Happy Good Friday all and hope you enjoy your Easter weekend. I've been hanging on to this one and now here we are. We have a gentleman just turned 30 who is in a relationship with a woman a few years older. They've been seeing each over for a little less than a year with only a few hiccups along the way. Take a look..

OneChele,
I like the blog, you have an interesting perspective. I turned 30 two weeks ago, I live outside of Phoenix in a decent condo with my black lab. I work a very boring but bill paying 9 - 5 and I've been seeing a great woman who is four years older than me for almost a year.

We're getting along well except when it comes to church and holidays. She is very close to her family and very much of a church goer. My family is scattered around and I could take or leave church. I believe in God but I'm not a fan of organized worship. For most of the holiday weekends or celebrations, she goes to her parents' house and there's usually a cookout and a gathering of family and friends. Most Sundays she attends church with her family and then they have a meal.

I usually join in once every six weeks or so but every weekend is too much for me. The big disagreement came when I mentioned that it would be nice to go away for Easter weekend. She looked at me like I personally put Jesus on the cross. Easter is for church and family, she said. If I didn't get that, maybe I didn't understand her at all. 

Am I being unreasonable to want to take my girlfriend away for a holiday weekend? What's the big deal about Easter anyway? And do I come off like a jerk if I say I don't want to spend every Sunday with her family? Look forward to hearing your thoughts and the BnB readers. 
T in Phoenix

Hi T-
I'll keep this one short and sweet. First, you are right - it's not at all fair for her to expect you to spend every Sunday with her fam. Second, church is important to her so this is something that if you stay together, you will have to work out. Third, you are not being unreasonable to want to take your girlfriend away for a holiday weekend BUT... Fourth (and final), Easter is pretty much the cornerstone upon which Christianity stands. Even half-assed believers carry themselves to church or some flavor of celebration on Easter Sunday. Knowing your girlfriend is as faith-based as she is, you have to respect that. Overall, I think a conversation about expectations and what's next is in your immediate future. Good luck!

BougieLand? Whatcha got for T today? Family, Easter, Church-going - what to do?

27 comments:

CaliGirlED said...

T, let me just touch on a few things here:

1)  "She is very close to her family and very much of a church goer."....Don't try to change that or guilt her into changing it. You're playing with fire! I know you don't understand because, "My family is scattered around and I could take or leave church. I believe in God but I'm not a fan of organized worship."

2) "Easter is for church and family, she said. If I didn't get that, maybe I didn't understand her at all."....Marinate on this for a bit, "understand her" being the key term. If she changes to please you, she will not be happy, and will soon become someone you no longer see as "a great woman".

3) "What's the big deal about Easter anyway?"...O_O! I'm struggling to find a way to answer this one. You say you believe in God, but maybe you don't believe in Jesus. HE is the big deal about Easter, or let me clarify, the Crucifiction and Resurrection. As Chele said is, "the cornerstone upon which Christianity stands."

4) To quote Chele again, "Overall, I think a conversation about expectations and what's next is in your immediate future."...Post haste, without delay! This lifestyle in which your girlfriend has grown up in is deep rooted in her and is what has helped to shape her (good or bad). For her to step away from that has to be of her own volition, otherwise she will become resentful and bitter.

Good luck and God bless you!

MsJamie14 said...

I'll share my parents experience. They both considered themselves Christian, but my mom was the church goer, my dad was not. On Sundays, she would wake us up, get us dressed and take us to the church house while my dad would stay home and watch football. So few people at church saw my dad, they thought she was a single mom. LOL. She did manage to get him to church a few times on holidays growing up.

When I went off to college, my dad woke up one day and decided he wanted to get back into the church. My mom's influence was a factor, and now he's an elder. My parents just celebrated 35 years of marriage.

All this to say, she repected where he was in life, and he respected her. If this relationship is worth it, find a compromise. Know that religious holidays will be family affairs, and you shouldn't ask her to go away. In turn, I hope she won't beat you over the head with attending church or spending EVERY Sunday with her family. Your spritual journey is your own.

Jubi The Great said...

My first thought was "oh this isn't gonna end well".

Clearly T & his gf have different priorities - she's into church & family & he'd rather do other things. Doesn't make either view right or wrong, but if you want to continue this relationship, 1 party is gonna have to compromise & do things they really don't want to do (either skip family time or have more family/church time than they want). This is one of those times were being on the same page with your partner regarding the important things is so important, cause even if they do compromise & work it out, there's gonna be some resentment there.

Jennifer said...

I think what Chele said is basically it.  Girlfriend feels one way about worship and family time, boyfriend feels another way.  Hopefully neither party has been sitting around during this relationship year waiting for the other to change their opinion... cuz you can't change anyone.  If one person has an epiphany and makes a change, so be it.
Chat it out, but if you can't come to an agreed understanding at this stage, then that doesn't bode well for a future agreement.

SingLikeSassy said...

It's not unreasonable to want to take her away for a holiday weekend, but you know who you are dating, so why would you suggest that y'all go away THIS weekend as opposed to Memorial Day, July 4th, Labor Day, Columbus Day -- some non-religious holiday?

I feel like you are passive aggressively trying to make her choose you over her faith and family.  Even if you won that battle, you would lose the war because this woman has told and shown you that at her core, these things are part of her and she won't be happy, which means you won't be happy and then what's the point?

So time for you to decide if this woman is the "one" for you. If she is, then you may need to compromise on the Sundays (which it sounds like you have already been doing) and she may need to compromise in some ways, such as never running a guilt trip and/or making you feel  bad about not going to church and/or sitting up with her family every Sunday.

Good luck.

Rob said...

Yeah - this comes down to what's more important? Being right or being happy?

Amy is a fam/church girl. I'm a sit in front of the TV and send up a prayer every now and then guy. We have Sunday dinner with her family once a month and I go to church with her twice a month. That was the compromise. We split holidays between her fam and mine. It can't be her way or your way, you both have to put some skin in the game if you really want to make a future together. Granted, I've been married less than a year and in this relationship for less than 3 so take my advice for what it's worth.

CaliGirlED said...

 "Train up a child in the way that he shall go and he will not depart from it". Your daddy had it in him, and your mom had the patience and understanding to know that he would come back to it. Hence the 35th anniversary. You have some good in you girl, don't depart from it! ;-)

Lady Ngo said...

Like everyone else, i gotta say my eyes nearly popped outta my head at "what's the big deal about Easter?" Honestly, if your lady goes to church and sunday dinner FAITHFULLY every week, why in the world would you think she'd be down to go on a vacation during Easter of all weekends?!?

Of course i'd say try and work it out but lets be real, if this lady is a faithful church goer i'm gonna assume unless something majorly catastrophic happens, she's going to continue to be that way and expect that of her spouse when she's ready to start a family. And if homie isn't down with that, i doubt they are going to have much longer together.

CaliGirlED said...

Your advice is worth a lot on the strength that it's right and good. Don't always have to be burned by the fire to know that it's hot! IMO

TrulyPC said...

T-

I agree that Easter is considered the cornerstone holiday of Christianity and for active church members there is usually NO way around this particular day.

Weekly family dinner is usually a tradition that is an expression of love and fellowship.  And while it should not be a "requirement" it could be considered emotional currency for the individual that desires it.  If you'll are important to each other then there is definitely a need to evaluate if the two of you can incorporate both conviction and compromise into your relationship so that both of you are considered.  

thinklikeRiley said...

T-
Take yo behind to church or get wi a chick who don't know nuttin bout Jesus.
Happy Easter.

Sasha Iman said...

So let me get this straight, your woman and her fam have standing reservations and a reserved pew up in God's house and you not only chose Easter weekend to whisk her way but you asking what's all the hype about? I'm not one to question another persons faith but... for really tho?

Anyways, to answer your questions...

Am I being unreasonable to want to take my girlfriend away for
a holiday weekend?
  No... but save for Thanksgiving & Christmas, imma need you to stick to federal holidays and the likes of Valentines Day, Saint Patty's Day,  Cinco de Mayo and etc.

What's the big deal about Easter anyway? Side eye of life, death, and resurrection for that one.

And do I
come off like a jerk if I say I don't want to spend every Sunday with
her family?
No, and oddly enough, I didn't see anything in your letter about her begging, nagging or forcing you to either.

bashowell said...

I think you said it well.  I don't do church and if I was with someone and found out that they were all in church like that, I would have to step away because that's not me.  There's going to be resentment on both sides.

CaliGirlED said...

 *praises dances*

SingLikeSassy said...

 Tabernacle!

GrownAzzMan said...

All I can add is uh-huh

Maxine Shaw said...

That's like asking why she wouldn't want to spend Christmas in church and with fam. Easter is just as big, especially if she is as serious about religion as you say

Maxine Shaw said...

Amen!

GrownAzzMan said...

Life really isn't complicated.

GrownAzzMan said...

And on the 3rd day!

T--
The posters have this one covered especially CaliGirlED & thinklikeRiley This is not that complicated. You know who she is. You ain't gonna change that and shouldn't want to. If the two of you can't find a blend that works feel free to click NEXT!

Happy Easter Bougie Peeps.

nylse said...

This is the meaning of being unequally yoked.  Religious (for lack of a better word) values are different and so ultimately everything else falls apart. This clearly isn't an area of compromise for her, so...i think his options are clear.

blackprofessor said...

Nothing to add except to reread Riley's advice!! 

Happy Easter Bougieland!

CaliGirlED said...

Y'all know I'm good to clown around and be sarcastic, but I say this with every sincere bone in my body, GrownAzzMan this----> "And on the 3rd day!" gave me chills!

If you don't know Jesus for yourself, you better get you some! #PostHaste

GammasWorld said...

It's all been said.  *backs out quietly* 

rikyrah said...

um,

this weekend is pretty much the absolute cornerstone of Christianity.

for God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son. That whoever believes in him shall not perish, but have everlasting life.


to the writer of the letter ...um, Easter weekend is all about that.

it's not a ' getaway weekend'. 

I'm not as religious as I used to be, but dude, she's definitely gonna be taking a different look at you.

you just stepped in it.....big time.

rikyrah said...

thank you

tiffanyinhouston said...

This was very much my experience growing up. Mom and kids went to church, daddy stayed at home. Well, God has a way of getting your attention. We had a family crisis when I was in college and my daddy sought comfort in going back to church and it stuck. My folks been married 42 years.

The letter writer has to decide if this young lady is for him and conversation needs to be around the need to have some balance. I was like that young lady in terms of being at the parents for every holiday and Sunday dinner. My husband didn't want to do that every Sunday (and understandably so). It's about leaving and cleaving.

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