The External Stuff Really Doesn't Matter
Posted April 10, 2006
My advice is to you as someone who has been a devotee for a while is to focus on your husband AND Krishna. Try to be the wife that he fell in love with. Many times when people join, they experience dramatic changes that often end up destroying families. Try not to be fanatical and try to compromise with him when possible. It is natural that your husband has material wants - everybody does. It is not fair to him that you expect him to follow your new standard. You should pay attention to him in the "physical" way and fulfill his emotional needs. Most men will leave their wives or cheat if they are not satisfied emotionally and physically. You should be happy together and enjoy each other's company.
If he is not a vegetarian, then tolerate that to. There are many non-vegetarian imitation meat products out there. Make him a few burgers and Not-Dogs and see if he likes it. I've cooked for people who did not know that I am a vegetarian and they thought that they were eating meat. If he continues to eats meat, then buy separate pots.
If he drinks or smokes tolerate that too. Prabhupada tolerated worse when he first came to America. His drinking is not going to effect you if don't want to drink; in fact, he will always have a designated driver in the car. If he smokes then ask him to quit for his own health - it's a nasty habit. He could smoke one less cigarette a day, and use a nicotine patch.
All the activities that you used to do with your husband, you should
continue doing: movies, concerts and taking walks in the park. Whatever you
do, don't leave your husband over this. You don't even know if you will
still be practicing in five years, and you don't want to destroy a
relationship over this. Your husband seems like a good man. If you go back
to being who you were before your dramatic change, then I'm sure things will
be fine with him. It is not necessary to turn into a cult member, to be a
devotee. If you are being fanatical, be less fanatical. The main thing
about being a devotee is chanting and thinking about Krishna. All the other
external stuff really doesn't matter. Of course if you were in a bad
marriage before your conversion, then that is a separate issue