Some Serious Advice Needed Watch

jmj
Badges: 2
Rep:
?
#41
Report 11 years ago
#41
Hi anon.

I myself am a Christian, so I know you're probably not wanting to hear from me right now, but I just wanted to say that I'm sorry for the situation you are in. I'm also sorry your experiences with Christianity have made you hate Christians. It sounds like you've grown up with Christianity rammed up in your throat, which I do not agree with. The Bible has free will for a reason, and everyone is entitled to the choice to follow the Christian faith or not and to have a relationship with the Christian God or not. I think if the parents are Christians that there is an obligation to have a Christian-based home but there should always be a choice involved- forcing Christianity down someone's throat and not letting them say no is not helpful and it will probably make somebody all the more hostile to the Christian faith as a result.

I imagine your parents are reacting the way they are because they're scared for you. From the Christian perspective, because you are not a Christian, they want to do everything they can to make you see that it's true because they love you and they're scared that you're going to go to hell. I feel the same way about my friends, and my non-Christian brother and extended members of my family.

However, telling you that you have to move out if they don't go to church is not going to be helpful for anybody. You were exactly right in your first post when you said that Christians should be all about loving each other. Unfortunately, Christians can really mess up sometimes. If you've experienced that a Christian hasn't treated you with love, gentleness and respect, then I'm truly sorry. The stuff you were saying about your original post about the pastor saying that parents must bring children to church and should pray for them etc- I think for a Christian it's a great thing to pray and try to bring their family members to church- but again, choice should be there as well.

I'm sorry Christianity sickens you so, but fair enough your decision and your parents shouldn't be threatening you with leaving- but like I said, they're probably just so desperate that you go to church to hear about the Bible etc that they're facing you with this ultimatum. As such, maybe the idea of living with your relatives is an idea worth looking into. It's what my friend had to do (I have a friend who was a Christian but came out as a lesbian about a year and a half ago and her dad threw her out and she went to live with a friend) and She's living back with her dad now and I think their relationship is a lot better. It'll give you all time space to think, you'll be in an environment where you're not so pressured, and hopefully they'll realise that they're really not going the best way about doing things.

I'm sorry I can't be more helpful, but I just felt compelled to reply. I hope you find my post useful in some way, and if you do want to talk more feel free to reply or to PM me, but I seriously understand if you'd rather not- I understand if you feel the last thing you want to do is to talk to a Christian. I hope things get better for you soon
0
reply
Anonymous #1
#42
Report Thread starter 11 years ago
#42
Right, we had the chat after church, and it went a bit wrong (but kind of looking back went well because if we had another argument something bad might have happened and i need a bit more time to think about it all, because i didn't really think they would actually mean what they said in chucking me out. Anyway we didn't have time to finish that talk so we are finishing it one of the days this week which gives me time to ponder over everything at what best to say. Basically i just asked them things like how the hell do you explain the old testament's things like the ark and other things which contradicted each other like creation in genesis 1 and 2. My Dad has been christian for 25 years and both have heard these things and so came up with answers to it all, i think he's been questioned about it before. So that went wrong because i was kinda hoping they wouldn't have seen these things or didn't have a satisfactory answer.

They also said that they love me (which i don't really doubt) and they are trying to do their best for me, and they said that they believe these things 100%, and won't want me to go to hell. I didn't have the heart to say i couldn't care less cos apparently in Heaven they say all you do is worship God and if you don't like doing this in this life you won't in heaven!!

Another point they brought up was that my brothers were still at home (8 and 18) and if they allowed me to stop going and participating in church matters then it would mean it that they might find a reason to stop going too. Grr, the annoyance of siblings. How do i get around this?

Another point they said was "what do you think you will do instead of going to Church. It's only 4 hours in a week, plus morning and afternoon readings for 10 min max each time. What else will you do? Go out and drink with the lads, clubbing?" I had no real answer to this because i've never really had a life up to now because of what they have imposed on me, so i would like to know how to word this to them cos they will be sure to ask me this again.

Also they don't believe our church to be extreme. They believe it to be very good with slight faults. Once again they seem to be blind to the fact that they are totally extreme.

I'm very much thinking of saying this:

"Mum, Dad, i know you love me but i have to say this, i've come up with something and there is no negotiating.
Either i move out and as a result get totally hardened to Christianity or I stay and i stop participating with church and all of christianity in the home and you never know i might turn back to christianity in a month, a year, 2 years whatever. Better chance than moving out and never touching it again."

But, i would like to know what answers to put to the things i said that they have said above. That would be great. I'm very inexperienced with this all, but they know a lot about Christianity so they've got an answer to nearly everything that i say really which is a downright pain in the arse.
0
reply
Anonymous #1
#43
Report Thread starter 11 years ago
#43
I should also add thanks to the recent replies and that i have no idea if they would chuck me out or what, because they do love me as said and i don't think they could say "get out" to me but i've underestimated them before so can't really take that for granted now.
0
reply
Vetinari
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#44
Report 11 years ago
#44
Hey OP,

Firstly, I want to say that I deeply sympathise with your situation - both that of having problems with your parents as well that of having been brought up in an environment in which you are forced to go to church and such. I'm fortunate enough to have parents who would be mortified at anything less than free and frank discussion - leaving me free busy myself with my atheisty pursuits. So whilst I can't relate, I certainly do sympathise.


I would reiterate what others have said in regards to not challenging your parents over the Bible and their beliefs. There is no way to win an argument against someone who moulds the world to fit what they already believe about it. Pointing out that all of the animals on earth wouldn't fit on the (very precisely detailed) ark even if they were liquified - or asking if the Trex was on the boat too - just isn't going to work. There are a myriad of counters and defences that can be spouted.

You will never change their minds.

I am sure they do love you and their reaction is just that of blind fear. To reach any sort of compromise whereby you can mend the relationship I think you will have to capitalise on this.

Personally, my approach would be this: Ask them whether love you, to which they will undoubtedly answer yes. Then tell them that if you, or any of your siblings, were in pain would they want to do everything they could help. I'm sure their answer will be yes to this too, but potentially with some provisos - you must cut them off and just make them well aware that you are deeply upset right now. Tell them that you've grown detached from religion and that sitting in church isn't going to change that. You can tell them that you love them and that you respect their decision to worship but make it clear that being in church only adds to your feeling of detachment and your emotional distress. Perhaps tell them that you would like to carry on living with them, but you can only do so if you are given room to think things through yourself and that they mustn't try and force anything upon you. Avoid accusing them of any such behaviour in the past.

You asked what you should do about your brothers. I think you need to calmly tell your parents that you are growing up and making your own decisions as you mature, and if your brothers - as they grow older - do the same then that is a separate matter and all of you must be encouraged to - above all else - be rational and intelligent. But make it clear that you cannot make yourself miserable just for the sake of stemming your brothers' questions.

They asked about what else you would do with your time - tell them that in church or out of it, you are still the same moral person and that isn't going to stop. What you do with those four hours will hopefully be the same responsible things you get up to in the rest of your free time. Suggest that maybe you might like to do something productive with this free time (you might even score brownie points if you find some charity work to do instead of church ) but either way, make sure they know that however you spend them, they will hopefully be less upsetting than 4 hours spent being forced to attend church.


All through it you need to be calm and civil - be really careful not to get worked up and be sure not to attack them (or their beliefs) or accuse them of anything. If they see that you are maturely asking for some space to think things through then they might be willing to calm down a little and let you stay on your terms.


If things remain heated then, as others suggested, stay with some relatives for a short while and sever contact for a bit. Your parents will likely be upset with themselves for driving you away and may ask you back. But if it does get the this stage of needing to move out in order to free yourself a little then you'll just need to take it from there. Seek help from your relatives as hopefully they can help bring your parents around.

Sorry this post has been a bit epic, and I really hope things go okay for you. If you'd like to talk at all then you are welcome to PM me for advice or all manner of atheist-related things. I'm always happy to help.

Good luck!
0
reply
JB26
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#45
Report 11 years ago
#45
I haven't read all the other responses.. so forgive me if i copy someone elses...

My family are christians, i am now atheist, they forced me to go to church, and i just did, but i just used to laugh about the cr*p they spoke in mass. I didn't care. Eventually it got through to my parents that there was no point bringing me, and so i dont have to go anymore.

My parents aren't 'hardcore' christians tho.

What i would do is, just sit down with your parents, and be mature. Tell them that you don't want to be a Christian anymore, tell them you have a right to your own beliefs, and that eventually you will find your own as you journey through your life. Tell them that they may disagree with your views, but if they're true christians they will understand you and forgive you if you have offended them in any way.

Thats all i can really think of i'm afraid!

Good luck!
0
reply
Anonymous #1
#46
Report Thread starter 11 years ago
#46
(Original post by Vetinari)
Hey OP,

Firstly, I want to say that I deeply sympathise with your situation - both that of having problems with your parents as well that of having been brought up in an environment in which you are forced to go to church and such. I'm fortunate enough to have parents who would be mortified at anything less than free and frank discussion - leaving me free busy myself with my atheisty pursuits. So whilst I can't relate, I certainly do sympathise.


I would reiterate what others have said in regards to not challenging your parents over the Bible and their beliefs. There is no way to win an argument against someone who moulds the world to fit what they already believe about it. Pointing out that all of the animals on earth wouldn't fit on the (very precisely detailed) ark even if they were liquified - or asking if the Trex was on the boat too - just isn't going to work. There are a myriad of counters and defences that can be spouted.

You will never change their minds.

I am sure they do love you and their reaction is just that of blind fear. To reach any sort of compromise whereby you can mend the relationship I think you will have to capitalise on this.

Personally, my approach would be this: Ask them whether love you, to which they will undoubtedly answer yes. Then tell them that if you, or any of your siblings, were in pain would they want to do everything they could help. I'm sure their answer will be yes to this too, but potentially with some provisos - you must cut them off and just make them well aware that you are deeply upset right now. Tell them that you've grown detached from religion and that sitting in church isn't going to change that. You can tell them that you love them and that you respect their decision to worship but make it clear that being in church only adds to your feeling of detachment and your emotional distress. Perhaps tell them that you would like to carry on living with them, but you can only do so if you are given room to think things through yourself and that they mustn't try and force anything upon you. Avoid accusing them of any such behaviour in the past.

You asked what you should do about your brothers. I think you need to calmly tell your parents that you are growing up and making your own decisions as you mature, and if your brothers - as they grow older - do the same then that is a separate matter and all of you must be encouraged to - above all else - be rational and intelligent. But make it clear that you cannot make yourself miserable just for the sake of stemming your brothers' questions.

They asked about what else you would do with your time - tell them that in church or out of it, you are still the same moral person and that isn't going to stop. What you do with those four hours will hopefully be the same responsible things you get up to in the rest of your free time. Suggest that maybe you might like to do something productive with this free time (you might even score brownie points if you find some charity work to do instead of church ) but either way, make sure they know that however you spend them, they will hopefully be less upsetting than 4 hours spent being forced to attend church.


All through it you need to be calm and civil - be really careful not to get worked up and be sure not to attack them (or their beliefs) or accuse them of anything. If they see that you are maturely asking for some space to think things through then they might be willing to calm down a little and let you stay on your terms.


If things remain heated then, as others suggested, stay with some relatives for a short while and sever contact for a bit. Your parents will likely be upset with themselves for driving you away and may ask you back. But if it does get the this stage of needing to move out in order to free yourself a little then you'll just need to take it from there. Seek help from your relatives as hopefully they can help bring your parents around.

Sorry this post has been a bit epic, and I really hope things go okay for you. If you'd like to talk at all then you are welcome to PM me for advice or all manner of atheist-related things. I'm always happy to help.

Good luck!
Wow, that is such a useful reply, possibly the best made in this thread, and there's been a lot of great ones! I feel what you have said is very well written and everything and i will take the advice on board when we talk next. Thanks to all, and remember i welcome more replies
0
reply
Vetinari
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#47
Report 11 years ago
#47
Good luck in your next chat with them, and feel free to ask for help with anything if you need it!
0
reply
Anonymous #1
#48
Report Thread starter 11 years ago
#48
(Original post by Vetinari)
Good luck in your next chat with them, and feel free to ask for help with anything if you need it!
Cheers, will update this thread when i have done
0
reply
wackysparkle
Badges: 14
Rep:
?
#49
Report 11 years ago
#49
well I won't say that I will be able to help you, only offer advice from my side really.
I too was brought up into a religious family, where the 5 prayers are done and prayers always told and everything basically revolves around religion.. its not extreme as it isn't forced down my throat, but its more like its accepted that each of us are religious.
Well, recently I came to a point in my life where I thought that I needed to find out about religion for myself and so I stopped being that religious anymore (this was during uni).
I came back changed which caused quite a ruckuss and lots of arguments and eventually they found out taht I wasn't religious anymore - that was a bit too much and they said that I shouldn't doubt religion and that I should be thankful to God etc.. I said I was, but I needed to find out things for myself.
I asked questions and they said I was losing my faith if I was doubting.
So far they know that Im not that religious anymore, and yes it hurts them and they do occasionalyl try to tell me something to get me back, to which its not a big deal - but I need to find out for myself.

enough about me, I just think that you could try what I did. I know that your situation is much more extreme and could possibly result in disowning and family split etc -
sounds like your parents aren't prepared to deal with you leaving your religion which is a damn shame really coz parents should love you before religion - which is something that i don't think eve my parents realise.
I think that you need to actually talk with a close uncle or aunt that actually understands what you are going through, someone you can trust and talk one-on-one with.

Other than that I'd say talk to your parents they need to know how unhappy you are... and parents always love their children before anything. And you need to say that you're old enough to make your own decisions and they need to respect that.
0
reply
Anonymous #1
#50
Report Thread starter 11 years ago
#50
(Original post by wackysparkle)
well I won't say that I will be able to help you, only offer advice from my side really.
I too was brought up into a religious family, where the 5 prayers are done and prayers always told and everything basically revolves around religion.. its not extreme as it isn't forced down my throat, but its more like its accepted that each of us are religious.
Well, recently I came to a point in my life where I thought that I needed to find out about religion for myself and so I stopped being that religious anymore (this was during uni).
I came back changed which caused quite a ruckuss and lots of arguments and eventually they found out taht I wasn't religious anymore - that was a bit too much and they said that I shouldn't doubt religion and that I should be thankful to God etc.. I said I was, but I needed to find out things for myself.
I asked questions and they said I was losing my faith if I was doubting.
So far they know that Im not that religious anymore, and yes it hurts them and they do occasionalyl try to tell me something to get me back, to which its not a big deal - but I need to find out for myself.

enough about me, I just think that you could try what I did. I know that your situation is much more extreme and could possibly result in disowning and family split etc -
sounds like your parents aren't prepared to deal with you leaving your religion which is a damn shame really coz parents should love you before religion - which is something that i don't think eve my parents realise.
I think that you need to actually talk with a close uncle or aunt that actually understands what you are going through, someone you can trust and talk one-on-one with.

Other than that I'd say talk to your parents they need to know how unhappy you are... and parents always love their children before anything. And you need to say that you're old enough to make your own decisions and they need to respect that.
Thank you, the irony in religion is that (presuming you are muslim from the 5 prayers a day) is that many people from different religions feel strongly that their religion is the only one that is the right one. It just pisses me of that, and that is why i'm finding it very hard to believe in religion. I'm wondering if it is better to write a letter to them about it (should have done it first time around really) because i'm sure i will forget half the stuff i really need to say etc. Vetinari's comments are superb, and if a lot of that can be rewritten as a letter i'm sure that's a bulk of the letter done and dusted. Sadly i'm crap at doing anything like that and would probably make a bigger mess of the situation sooo if anyone wants to write up a letter for me, (and obviously i would have to edit some stuff then even because i haven't listed all the facts and the full situation isn't known to you guys. Anyway know that is a big ask, but if anyone is feeling helpful or is experiencing a boring summer and got some time to kill doing that would be great and i would be VERY grateful.
0
reply
Anonymous #1
#51
Report Thread starter 11 years ago
#51
I'm wondering if the best time to "finish this chat" would be next week when a holiday to West wales is planned. We go on the saturday, and if i gave this letter or had a chat on wednesday it could give them a few days to think about it and then a whole week away from it all.
0
reply
Anonymous #1
#52
Report Thread starter 11 years ago
#52
So anyone want to write this letter or give me a basic start? I've decided this is what i will do. Tomorrow night most probably. Do you think this would be ok to do? A one week holiday is planned on Saturday. Would it be better if i say that i shouldn't go and leave them alone (with my 2 other brothers mind) for that week and stay in my house or what?
0
reply
Anonymous #1
#53
Report Thread starter 11 years ago
#53
right, final bump, anyone willing to do this for me? would defo ease the situation as i forget everything i should say when i'm in front of my parents Would be very appreciated, but know it's a big ask so hoping for last time someone can do this for me
0
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

Would you turn to a teacher if you were being bullied?

Yes (33)
25%
No (99)
75%

Watched Threads

View All