Something I’ve noticed during my brief subscription on Match.com is that religion is playing a huge part in most of my potential bachelors’ lives. More than likely, this can easily be attributed to the fact that I live and work in the Bible Belt. In fact, I’ve lived here most of my life and have become accustomed to the fact that most of my friends, neighbors, and coworkers are particularly religious.
I’ve given my religious background here before, but I’ll do it again. I was born into a non-practicing Methodist family. We went to church on some holidays; I remember first attending church at the age of three. It was Easter. We colored a picture of Jesus in ascension in the Sunday School class. I was angry because we were allowed only one crayon color for the whole page. I didn’t know the rules, else I wouldn’t have selected yellow. When I asked for another color, I was chastised. Yeah, love thy neighbor.
After this experience, I began Catholic school. And despite the fact that my family wasn’t super tied to the whole Methodist thing, I never converted. So this made for some interesting situations. The first week of school was awful. I cried every day because we were forced, or so my mother thought, to visit sinners every afternoon. I dreaded this afternoon time and begged my mother to make it stop. As it turns out, after talking to several Sisters, it was actually “centers” of learning. Southern accent. And beyond that, I was often identified as the “non-Catholic” girl. I didn’t attend Mass with my classmates. I didn’t see them on Sundays, our parents weren’t close, I was afraid of the Jesus statue in the hallway and worst of all I ate meat on Fridays during Lent.
It’s probably surprising to learn that after all this ‘tragedy’, the Crayola Incident, the lunches spent feeling guilty over ham sandwiches, that I went to college and ended up with a major in Religious Studies. Most of my courses centered around the Old Testament, but I still don’t attend church regularly nor would I consider myself well versed in The Bible or Christianity in general. I am spiritual; I m probably not what people would consider “religious” by definition.
And yet I find myself on Match.com receiving a lot of messages from young gentlemen who openly proclaim in their profiles that they’re “dedicated to serving Jesus Christ” or “particularly active in their home church” and, my personal favorite, I actually had a junior pastor contact me. Me. The Blonde. The queen of sexting, the girl who lived with The Boyfriend (decidedly not The Husband). The girl who regularly lets the F-bomb go. The girl who just wrote a blog post complaining about church because she totally didn’t get more than one crayon.
I think that I am self-conscious about my lack of religious background and uncertain religious future. This has to be a unique problem to those living in the south. And I had no earthly idea that I would have to resolve this insecurity in order to date. I totally disclose my lack of serious dedication to a church on my Match.com profile. And while I am willing to visit churches and discuss my point of view with anyone, I’m not sure how I feel about fully dedicating myself to a church. It would take a very special place to procure my membership.
To me, my religious point of view is a pretty detailed aspect of my life–especially for something that plays such a little role for me. It’s hard for me to define what I feel and what I am looking for in a potential match, especially when it comes to religious views. And I honestly wonder how simply listing a religious affiliation on a Match.com profile can possibly give me a glimpse. I mean, after all, I could very well select Methodist or Catholic, but I’m using two crayons and eating my Lunchable on Fridays…