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Many Muslim parents with adult children considering marrying outside of their faith fear that their son or daughter may abandon their faith.
Their grandchildren may not be raised Muslim and could grow up without any religion at all.
My family and Parvez told them it's none of their business and that was the end of it. Both our families were too stubborn, so we knew we had to run away from them. Despite my wife being Hindu and me a Christian, we've never faced anything because of our differences in faith, at least externally.
We fell in love with each other when we were in school. We knew it would bring trouble if people came to know a Hindu boy and Muslim girl were going out together. And one day, eventually, both our families found out. There was no other way for us to be together otherwise, and that's what we did. I don't think [being in an interfaith relationship is] that bad in some sections [of society].
I was recently approached by a Muslim chaplain looking for resources for Muslim parents, parents trying to find positive ways for their families to move forward when their adult children choose life partners outside of their faith community.
They fear intermarriage will not fit comfortably within the expectations of parents and the boundaries of their faith communities.
There is some evidence that as many as ten percent of slaves brought to North America were Muslim (Austin, 1984), but Christianity was imposed upon the slave population, and slaves who refused to convert were persecuted or killed (Nyang, 1999).
In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Muslim (as well as Christian) migrants entered the United States from various middle eastern nations, including what are now Lebanon, Syria, and Iraq (Haddad, 1986b).
A year ago, when we were trying to get admission for our daughter in the school in which we had enrolled our son, the principal was very confused to see the remarkably different names.
Some also fear repercussions with respect to the social perception of their family by other members of the Muslim community.