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I love my boyfriend, but we are very different and I doubt it will work out

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Question - (5 May 2010) 4 Answers - (Newest, 5 May 2010)
A female United States age 22-25, anonymous writes:

Dear Cupid,

I genuinely love my boyfriend, we have been together for over a year and before that we were friends for 5 years. I can't imagine being without him, but we are complete opposites when it comes to fundamental political, social, and religious topics that I feel strongly about. Whenever we have discussions on these topics my feelings are always hurt, because he is very intolerant. There have been times when I have considered breaking up with him, but there is a stubborn part in me that loves him dearly. I don't know what to do anymore, I'm constantly crying because I'm so confused, I want to be with him, but I've tried to work it out, but I don't know if I can live like this much longer. What do you advice?

Thank you, Cupid

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A female reader, chigirl Norway + , writes (5 May 2010):

chigirl agony auntAre you hurt because of his intolerance and the way he debates these topics with you? Or are you hurt because his view is opposite from yours? I think opposite views are alrigt, and wont damage the relationship. In fact opposites are a good thing. But what needs to be in sync is deeper core values and personalities. There is no reason to cry just because he has different views than you. But, there is reason to cry if he is disrespectful of your views, puts you down because of them, starts fights because of them, is intolerant and stubborn etc etc. Because all those things are bad personality traits that have little to do with his "opinion". Because can diasgree and still be in a loving relationship.

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A female reader, Laura1318 Malaysia +, writes (5 May 2010):

Laura1318 agony auntYou cannot live with an intolerant person or a bigot. Life is just like hell and it is only his views and nothing else matters.

You cannot breathe under those circumstances and it is better that you break up.

Find someone who is more tolerant and accommodating.

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A female reader, Honeygirl South Africa +, writes (5 May 2010):

Honeygirl agony auntHun, I would suggest first of all, dont have discussions on these topics!! We all have differing ideas on politics, religion and it is very easy to get all upset because the person you are talking to just wont see things from your perspective.

So either you 'agree to disagree' on touchy subjects and DONT discuss them or else give up your bf. The hardest one to come to terms with will be religion... what happens if you marry this guy and you want children... what religion would they be brought up in???

If you are not able to come to terms with his differing ideas and this is always going to be a bone of contention in your relationship, then you need to think seriously of moving on with your life.

Honeygirl

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A female reader, CindyCares Italy + , writes (5 May 2010):

CindyCares agony aunt Opposites attract each other. There's more spark. If you date someone who talks,thinks and acts just like you often it ends up you feel like you are going out with your brother.

Differences in political ,social and religious views are not a bad thing per se, in fact a civil,open minded debate between two different worlds may end up enriching each of them.

The problem here is not that you have different views, the problem is that he is intolerant. You have to assess how much of a problem is that gonna be down the roaad. Is he gonna try to bully you or force you into changing your opinions ? Is he gonna respect your religion even if he does not practice it ? Will he have a problem with you hanging out with like-minded people ,or will he feel you are turning agaist him ?

It all boils down to respect,eventually. Love is wonderful but without mutual respect no relationship can last.

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