Help me
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05-02-2018, 09:45 PM
Help me
Heyo! I'm a 15 year old atheist who's in need of some serious advice. I live in an incredibly religious community. One of those places where you can drive all over town and all you can see are churches. My family are the worst out of all of the bigots. I'm homeschooled, go to Church three days a week, and can't go one second without hearing about how good their invisible creator is. The advice will be split up into three separate posts. This one will be about church.

I swear on Darwin's grave that the "church" I go to is a literal colt. Religion's a colt too, but nowhere near these proportions. Let's start with the fact that I live in the same neighborhood as these fools and the stalk me while I'm on my runs. They found out where I work and stalk me there too. Last time I was at church , I caught one of them peering through my sketch book, a horrible violation of privacy Thank goodness I hadn't brought the one I brood in because it would have been all over for me. Got told my cartoons were too worldly.

The colt teaches all the fundemental hoo has that we've all heard before so I won't go too far into it. Basically gays go to hell, women must submit, purity, god is everything blah blah blah. Its sickening. They've twisted the Bible, to fit them when it's convenient however and boast about how we should not be doing science and math. If it wasn't federal law, the pastor would preach not to school your children.

Speaking of children, they've got their indoctrination systems to a T. They have the younger kids off to the side behind closed doors, so I can't say much about them but the youth house is the worst!. Were separated from the rest of the church in a house a couple meters away. All the doors have been removed and sealed off so that you can only get in from one place. And out. There is no way you can leave without someone noticing. The teachings are so twisted i often feel trapped. This led to me climbing out the second story window. I got caught. Parents were notified and I lied that I had felt sick and there was someone taking up the bathroom. Now I'm constantly squished between two adults to make sure I can never escape again. This environment is toxic and I need help. If anyone has been in a similar situation and lived to tell the tale please post some advice because I'm friggin desperate. Thank you for reading.
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05-02-2018, 10:44 PM
RE: Help me
Hello!

Hug

Hopefully some one will be along quickly and be able to offer some helpful advice.

Other than an internet shoulder, threre's naught much else I can do. Sad

Hug

Heart
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05-02-2018, 11:39 PM
RE: Help me
I am giving you this advice based on what I've heard has happened to others, but I have never lived through it myself, so don't take it as truth. You are closest to your situation, so you must make your life decisions. For what it's worth though, this is what I think.

Keep it on the down low. Honestly. Keep your disbelief hidden. Think of yourself as being a spy or something. Your crazy cult will do something even more unhinged if they find out the depths of your depravity (that's what they'll see it as).

You are currently in a weak position. 15 years old is old enough to see through the bullshit but you're still legally a minor. Your parents hold all the power in your relationship. So don't give them a reason to force you. Rather pretend you buy their bullshit for the next little while, and get out when you're strong enough on your own.

The one exception to this advice is if there's been any crime committed, especially on you personally. If for example you are being beaten, or abused in some other way, you need to get out - go to the police. But if you don't have anything like that going on, you need to sit tight.

We'll love you just the way you are
If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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06-02-2018, 07:55 AM
RE: Help me
Yeah.
Ride it out.
You are too young to have options.
Start working toward your escape.
You need to be financially capable of moving on.
Plan for a nice 2 year degree that you can get good employment with.
That gets you to a place where you can support yourself and move on.
2 more years of High School then you can move on to college and make a break for it.
There are also good certificate degrees that are even shorter.
Things like x-ray tech.

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06-02-2018, 09:31 AM
RE: Help me
Don't do anything rash, be safe first! When you get the chance to get out cleanly, go for it, but until then just duck and cover and pretend. You can be sure that a lot of people around you are pretending right now. Play the game and abide. You'll be stronger when you do get to a departure point for all the work you put in right now.
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06-02-2018, 09:41 AM
RE: Help me
I hope that you can make it out safely, dear! Like morondog said, sit tight and stay safe! You might feel like you should stand up against this horrible treatment, but it will only make them clamp down even tighter on you. As soon as you have a real opportunity, then make your escape. But not until you're an adult and legally able to make your own decisions.

It sucks right now, but there's not a lot you can do. I grew up in the church, a very fundy type, too. I didn't mentally let go of it until well after I'd actually stopped going, so you're at least lucky that you aren't mentally captured by it's obdurate suffocating grasp. Hug Just stay safe and hold tight. You can do it. And don't let it defeat you.
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06-02-2018, 09:53 AM (This post was last modified: 06-02-2018 10:36 AM by julep.)
RE: Help me
(05-02-2018 09:45 PM)Lii Wrote:  Heyo! I'm a 15 year old atheist who's in need of some serious advice. I live in an incredibly religious community. One of those places where you can drive all over town and all you can see are churches. My family are the worst out of all of the bigots. I'm homeschooled, go to Church three days a week, and can't go one second without hearing about how good their invisible creator is. The advice will be split up into three separate posts. This one will be about church.

I swear on Darwin's grave that the "church" I go to is a literal colt. Religion's a colt too, but nowhere near these proportions. Let's start with the fact that I live in the same neighborhood as these fools and the stalk me while I'm on my runs. They found out where I work and stalk me there too. Last time I was at church , I caught one of them peering through my sketch book, a horrible violation of privacy Thank goodness I hadn't brought the one I brood in because it would have been all over for me. Got told my cartoons were too worldly.

The colt teaches all the fundemental hoo has that we've all heard before so I won't go too far into it. Basically gays go to hell, women must submit, purity, god is everything blah blah blah. Its sickening. They've twisted the Bible, to fit them when it's convenient however and boast about how we should not be doing science and math. If it wasn't federal law, the pastor would preach not to school your children.

Speaking of children, they've got their indoctrination systems to a T. They have the younger kids off to the side behind closed doors, so I can't say much about them but the youth house is the worst!. Were separated from the rest of the church in a house a couple meters away. All the doors have been removed and sealed off so that you can only get in from one place. And out. There is no way you can leave without someone noticing. The teachings are so twisted i often feel trapped. This led to me climbing out the second story window. I got caught. Parents were notified and I lied that I had felt sick and there was someone taking up the bathroom. Now I'm constantly squished between two adults to make sure I can never escape again. This environment is toxic and I need help. If anyone has been in a similar situation and lived to tell the tale please post some advice because I'm friggin desperate. Thank you for reading.

Behave outwardly while making your escape plans. If they begin to suspect seriously that you want to get out, you'll be targeted for deprogramming, and that could go very, very badly.

I grew up in a similar theological environment, which I escaped through going off to college and never coming back. My father did, at one point, drive 600 miles to break into my apartment to "check" on me, and he had handcuffs, a gun, and ropes in his van--he was ready to take me back if it looked like I was on drugs or in Satan's power. It was a terrifying night, reassuring him and talking him down.

All of that's to say, if you feel there's a threat to your safety, there could be. It's a good idea, if you can, to bide your time.

In the meantime, though, an anonymous call to your town hall might be a good idea. I think it's a safety code violation of some kind to block multiple exits to a building.
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06-02-2018, 10:54 AM
RE: Help me
Sad This makes me so sad for you. How horrible to treat children this way!

I agree that they will double down in their indoctrination if they suspect you are losing faith. It seems you have free access to the internet, so I would continue to check in here and any other place you can be yourself. You need an outlet for your internal frustration.

In the meantime, start working on your escape plan. Are you able to go to college? I would choose a school far enough away that it would be difficult for them to visit you. Do you have ANY trusted non-religious adults in your life that you could contact? Even if they live out of state.
I know college seems far away, but it will be here before you know it.

Are there any groups in your area (or online) that can provide support and advice for breaking free from evangelical parents?

And finally, hugs from a mom who can't imagine doing this to her kids.

"If you don't have a seat at the table, you're probably on the menu."

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06-02-2018, 04:33 PM
RE: Help me
What others are saying -- basically, fake it until you're set up to make a good exit.

Don't be hasty, plan well. It's way easier for an atheist to fake belief -- especially when they're been raised in a religious home -- than it is for a believer to fake non-belief. I know; I was raised in a Catholic home, and never did believe. But somehow I stuck it out through several years of weekly religious instruction, with my mind and my principles intact. Mentally I disowned the church in my early teens, but I didn't "come out" as an atheist until I was in college (at age 18), and I lost no time then in doing so.

Resist, for now, the impulse to put others in their place for their bizarre beliefs; you won't convince them, and it will only make things difficult.
Once you're in college, or otherwise on your own, you'll have a lifetime to do that, anyway. If you're 15 now, you really only have to stick it out a couple more years.

And hey, you've taken a great first step already. You found an online community of folks -- world wide -- who understand your position, and support your right to non-belief. If the believers get too hard to take, come hang out in TTA for a while. Feel free to vent. There are non-believers with a huge range of backgrounds and interests here. We get it. Yes

--
Dr H

"So, I became an anarchist, and all I got was this lousy T-shirt."
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06-02-2018, 05:02 PM
RE: Help me
Please be very careful about your own internet security. By that I mean always wipe your history to keep any of these people from seeing that you're visiting here. And keep it password protected with something entirely nonsensical that nobody would ever be able to guess. You seem to be in a horrible situation and I feel for you. Get as much education as you are able to, in as wide a variety of areas as possible. You never know where help or inspiration may be found.

Where are we going and why am I in this hand basket?
"Life is not all lovely thorns and singing vultures, you know." ~ Morticia Addams
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