11 May 2007

Would you give a religious birthday card to an agnostic?

My wife would.

It's her sister's birthday (or rather, it was a week ago, but we're only able to go visit now) so my wife bought her a card. It's a religious card - typical stuff about "being blessed" and "God's love" etc. Inside, she followed suit and wrote more stuff about God and included a favourite bible verse.

The problem is that her sister is not a Christian. She's dabbled in religion a bit before but is overall not religious. That is why I've decided to call her agnostic here: it may not be appropriate (I don't know her beliefs that well) but it's at least in the right ballpark. Regardless, I doubt she'd appreciate a religious card and I have serious reservations about my wife giving it to her. To make matters worse, we're being cheapskates so the card is not only from my wife but from me and one of her brothers who lives nearby as well. Of course, I'm an atheist and she knows that. Meanwhile, that brother is in largely the same situation as the sister, though possibly even more of an unbeliever. He's only gone to church a couple of times and that was with the sole intention of trying to pick-up (he failed).

I called her on this: "Don't you think giving a religious card is inappropriate when your sister and two of the three of us are not religious?"

Her reply? "Yeah, I guess." Then she continued writing in the card and put it in the envelope without a second thought.

Is there something about religion that makes believers really insensitive in these situations?

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At May 11, 2007 4:01 p.m., Blogger Necator said...

Aardvark. I feel for you deeply. You must love your wife very much as I beleive that my frustration would be too much at this point. Or...perhaps I'm just shallow.

Is there any possibility that you and your brother-in-law could give separate cards? Maybe a Futureshop gift certificate in there, or would this cause offense to your wife?

At May 11, 2007 4:28 p.m., Blogger King Aardvark said...

Well, it's frustrating sometimes. When she's not on a religious bent she's great.

Thanks for your suggestion re: seperate cards; however, I'm way too cheap for that ;-) Seriously, my wife has a pretty big family, so without doubling or tripling up on gifts/cards for people, buying gifts would quickly bankrupt us all.

At May 11, 2007 4:48 p.m., Blogger vjack said...

I think I'd probably just be happy that she's dealing with the cards so I didn't have to. I know where you are coming from though.

At May 11, 2007 4:52 p.m., Blogger King Aardvark said...

vjack: too true, too true. I haven't even written in my own mom's Mother's Day card yet. I really need to get around to that.

At May 11, 2007 5:43 p.m., Blogger Sacred Slut said...

I'm sure her sister will get a good laugh out of it. If anything, she probably feels sorry for you. Haven't you ever been on the receiving end of one of those Xian cards? Minutes of cheap entertainment.

At May 14, 2007 8:18 a.m., Blogger Necator said...

My sig. other's one uncle and aunt are uber-Xians and try to make everyone hold hands and pray at the family functions. I politely refuse and it rarely goes over well. Most of the relatives choose to ignore me for the entire duration of the social events nowadays. I guess they feel bad because said uncle has Parkinson's disease, and how dare I undermine his faith.

Sad to say, but your invisible intangible sky-daddy ain't gonna take away your shakes. He didn't save my mother from turning into the likeness of a living corpse before she died of cancer.


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