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Another Bad Experience

Bluemoody

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Even though I live in a city of over 8 million people, I can't make a real friend. People either reject me or they use me. Last year I decided to answer some ads for pen pals, bad idea. The web is full of scammers and sickos! One woman told me(a woman) to send her $20 a month for her to keep writing me! I'm not desperate. Finally I found a woman that seemed genuine and seemed to share some of my interests, so I wrote to her about a year. Suddenly she stopped writing, this surprised me because I was led to believe that our relationship could turn into a real friendship. At first I thought she was too busy to write, so I gave it some time and sent an email asking if she was OK. No reply. After some more time I sent a last email stating, "I thought we were friends, but if you don"t want that I won't bother you again. Nothing from her and that was that. It took me by surprise because we didn't have a disagreement or anything and her last email was friendly.
In hindsight I thought about the red flags that I should have paid attention to: she had 3 failed marriages and didn't get along with her own family and she was an atheist. If I had know she was the latter I wouldn't have written her because I believe that atheists have a cold heart and only answer to themselves. She probably only answered my reply because I live in NYC which was the epic center of the COVID-19 virus and she was curious. Later after things leveled off she got bored. I never send anybody my street address and I have stopped giving out my phone number. In this high tech age, who knows what someone can do with info. There are a lot of really bad things happening to people that go on the web and don't know what they're doing.
 

JJW

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[and she was an atheist.] If I had know she was the latter I wouldn't have written her because I believe that atheists have a cold heart and only answer to themselves.
I'll take offense to that. It's not that I believe in nothing. I just don't have confidence in the reality of a deity. Your personal belief is more inclined to answering only to your belief than those others that don't have your belief but are content to accept that you believe it.

Tell me that your religion is matter-of-fact and that none of the others are and I'll have to ask you to prove it. If you accept that belief is a choice, and it's subjectivity is only a matter of upbringing, and one is not more or less genuine than another and I'll forego further opinion.

Not that there is any religious intent in this post. I'm completely on board with your right to believe what you will. I'm just asking for the same in return.
 

Sir Joseph

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Bluemoody, don't be surprised that someone jumped on your italicized statement generalizing your character view of Atheists. I won't defend your statement or get drawn into JJW's theological challenge, but will give my Christian perspective on your situation.

While I agree that a devout Christian can and should make a better friend (for me) because of shared beliefs and values, that does not prevent me from seeking interaction and friendship with others who don't share my faith. Be it Christianity, Islam, Buddhist, or Atheist, two principles apply:

First, most of us here need all the friends we can get, and if we rule out the ones that don't share our beliefs and values, we're going to miss out on a lot of relationships, including good ones.

Second, if we're strong with our faith and values, we'll want to share our world view and truth with others, and what better way to do that than by interacting with them personally. In other words, if I befriend a person and win his liking and respect, I have much more potential to influence him in his beliefs and values than I would as a stranger.

I've befriended several Atheists over the years and found at least 2 of them to be closer, better friends than most of my other Christian or Catholic friends. I think all of my Atheist friends and family members are woefully misguided with their beliefs and world values, but that doesn't negate my need and obligation to pursue good relationships with them. Understand, from a Christian perspective, our second purpose in life (after loving God as the first) is to learn how to love others. We do this by engaging with all sorts of people.

Now I'd ask you what your intention was in pursuing a relationship with the girl who dismissed you? Was it just to build a friendship, or was it in hopes of a mate? There are different suitability requirements between a friendship versus marriage. It may be reasonable to start a relationship with someone holding opposing religious views, hoping that one will influence and win over the other. But, to marry with opposing religious views will cause lifelong problems with the relationship - best avoided.

In summary, I'd encourage you to befriend everyone you meet, giving them as much time and attention as they'll take. But a marriage prospect warrants a higher standard of compatibility with beliefs and values.
 
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