Some time ago I've heard a lady on TV saying "I reinvent my marriage every seven years". Seven or not, its a good idea. To try and look at your partner in a slightly different way, for example to feel yourself as the most devoted member of his fan club. To have an urge to tell the world of his exceptional qualities, as could be honesty, loyalty, commitment, striving to do his best and always be the good person.
When I tried to be religious, lots of strange rules affected our relationship. I constantly had to feel guilty - and without even offending any real being... Guilty of not loving my "imaginary friend" more than my husband and kids, guilty of not trying to convert my man to the Orthodoxy as I was told by a priest, guilty of having sex on the wrong day of the week, in the wrong time of the year (e.g. lent), guilty of enjoying it and not having babies all the time. The fact that there is practically no divorce in the Russian Orthodox Church made me very scared from time to time: what if I made a mistake being young and inexperienced? Now, honestly analyzing myself, I realized I've for sure met my dream man in my husband and I, alone, with all my heart, decide to stick with him for the rest of my life. Its my happy and free choice. No invisible beings with silly rules involved.
Speaking of silly rules. From time to time I've been forgetting that on particular days I'm "unclean", "dirty" or whatever that disgusting church Slavonic word ("в нечистоте") meant, and I was touching the icons when tidying the house or dusting. Horrible sin! Several "sin books" sold at various church kiosks told me so. I had to tell a priest (an absolutely strange man) about this. Such a disturbing experience. Also at the end of church services almost everybody went to kiss priest's hand. I hate kissing strangers so that was another thing I dreaded and at the same time blamed myself for dreading...
I had Romanian neighbours giving me lifts to the church and on one occasion when we went here there was a traditional "kiss every other person in the church" ceremony. The poor Romanian man, why presumably couldn't stand this kind of things too, went hiding. I hope these nice and intelligent people eventually would clear of this common mental illness called "religion".
People use to see a "nice" face of religion: temples, glittering gold, procession, singing. But there is another side, its dark and very, very unpleasant. And absolutely unnecessary as I understand now. All my hopeless efforts to be a "good christian" didn't give me any more love, satisfaction or inspiration. I felt confused, depressed and... "dirty". Not any more.
Religion could also be dangerous to your life. After my mother had a serious operation the doctors told her to stick to a strict diet. She went to her church to ask for an advice because that diet was in conflict with the Orthodox "food rules" and a priest twice as young as her told her: "Of course you can follow that diet. On Sundays".
Of course various belivers take the "rule" business differently. But in my experience they all have some strange irrational set of rules and many feel oblidged to impose it onto others. There couldn't be a religion without some sort of dogma and a mind-killing feeling that "I am right because this is said in my little red/green/blue/whatever book".
I had some preachers knocking on my door yesterday. "Wouldn't it be nice if everybody on Earth lived in peace?" they said. Like believing in invisible friends ever stopped religious wars and persecution of infidels and so on. I tried to preach them back but I am normally a shy person, hate arguing and couldn't stand it for very long. But I have this rebellious idea of putting a note on my door saying "Preachers will be humiliated"