How to Rebuild?
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23-06-2016, 01:27 AM
RE: How to Rebuild?
(22-06-2016 10:00 PM)Foxen Wrote:  You start by rebuilding yourself, realizing that they were never your true friends if they could abandon you due to you being an atheist. True friends are for life. True friends do not abandon you because you no longer have the same belief system as them. It is clear that they were never truly your friends.

You rebuild by moving on: one step at a time.

Unfortunately per the OP, she is *their* true friend.

Belinda, you just need to make some new friends. Loadsa ways to do that Smile I'd also not necessarily throw out the old friends just yet - several of my mates are truly convinced I'm going to hell, doesn't bother me Big Grin I just tell them their life is a meaningless ritual praying to an empty void - that's if they get evangelical. Most of the evangelical ones self-selected themselves outta the friend group Tongue

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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23-06-2016, 07:39 AM
RE: How to Rebuild?
(22-06-2016 09:21 AM)Belinda Wrote:  I just thought perhaps some of you might have personal experience and/or some good advice regarding the situation I find myself in. So, I realized (not quickly, but after a long process) that I was no longer a Christian, and that I take the side of science and reason. As a result I have lost my entire social support system. I was completely immersed in the church (Protestant), so all my friends are Christians. Since I came out of the closet I have been completely shunned. They have taken the time to tell me I am going to hell, and that I am rejecting Jesus.

I no longer have any friends; I am alone. It's been a long time since I was in a situation where I moved across the country to go to graduate school, and had to make new friends. Therefore, I literally do not know how to build an entirely new support system.

I am just wondering if any of you have advice with regard to how to rebuild my support system. I am still in the closet where my family is concerned, but all my friends know and have stopped talking to me. It hurts because I love them. Anyway, any feedback anyone has would be greatly appreciated.

I understand on some level.

I have absolutely no support other than myself and the forum. I do have a couple of people I would consider friends however they are very devout evangelicals and I somewhat question their ultimate motives. They are great guys but I do wonder sometimes. I can't have discussions with anyone on much without the religious shit being thrown into it. My advice is to participate at places like this and if possible, find a local group so you can let your hair down and not have to think of how to phrase something to avoid pushing the discussion into the Jebus category. It can be very lonely but it doesn't have to be. And as stated previously, these people were NOT friends.

"If we are honest—and scientists have to be—we must admit that religion is a jumble of false assertions, with no basis in reality.
The very idea of God is a product of the human imagination."
- Paul Dirac
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23-06-2016, 08:43 AM
RE: How to Rebuild?
(23-06-2016 07:39 AM)The Organic Chemist Wrote:  
(22-06-2016 09:21 AM)Belinda Wrote:  I just thought perhaps some of you might have personal experience and/or some good advice regarding the situation I find myself in. So, I realized (not quickly, but after a long process) that I was no longer a Christian, and that I take the side of science and reason. As a result I have lost my entire social support system. I was completely immersed in the church (Protestant), so all my friends are Christians. Since I came out of the closet I have been completely shunned. They have taken the time to tell me I am going to hell, and that I am rejecting Jesus.

I no longer have any friends; I am alone. It's been a long time since I was in a situation where I moved across the country to go to graduate school, and had to make new friends. Therefore, I literally do not know how to build an entirely new support system.

I am just wondering if any of you have advice with regard to how to rebuild my support system. I am still in the closet where my family is concerned, but all my friends know and have stopped talking to me. It hurts because I love them. Anyway, any feedback anyone has would be greatly appreciated.

I understand on some level.

I have absolutely no support other than myself and the forum. I do have a couple of people I would consider friends however they are very devout evangelicals and I somewhat question their ultimate motives. They are great guys but I do wonder sometimes. I can't have discussions with anyone on much without the religious shit being thrown into it. My advice is to participate at places like this and if possible, find a local group so you can let your hair down and not have to think of how to phrase something to avoid pushing the discussion into the Jebus category. It can be very lonely but it doesn't have to be. And as stated previously, these people were NOT friends.

I understand your point re: these people not being true friends. But at the same time, people are so brainwashed by religion it overrides everything else, including their own way of thinking.

Some people are not capable of operating without religion and it spills into everything in their lives. I guess my point is, they could have been true friends, but the religious brainwashing and cult-like mentality made it difficult for them to separate friendship from someone who is denying God and going to hell. In other words, "if you are no friend of God's, you are no friend of mine" type deal.

In my church, allegiance to God/Jesus was top priority and everything else fell beneath that. If it wasn't something God would be happy with, then you should not be doing it, PERIOD.

I also think some true believers have doubts of their own and are so fearful of going to hell that anyone else with doubts is viewed as a threat to their own potential unbelief.

Additionally, atheists are constantly viewed as people with no morals by the church. It is reiterated over and over. If you are a hardcore believer, I think it can be difficult to maintain a friendship with a nonbeliever because I think the fear is that this "bad" atheist could lead you down a wrong path and then God will be pissed.

Then there are some who believe nonbelievers are being influenced by Satan Facepalm

My point is I don't necessarily blame believers for being fearful of atheists. They are brainwashed to believe a certain way. I think these people may have genuinely been friends, but were too scared due to religious beliefs and the psychological fear of hell to maintain a friendship with her.

Anyway, just my two cents Tongue
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23-06-2016, 10:20 AM
RE: How to Rebuild?
(23-06-2016 08:43 AM)jennybee Wrote:  
(23-06-2016 07:39 AM)The Organic Chemist Wrote:  I understand on some level.

I have absolutely no support other than myself and the forum. I do have a couple of people I would consider friends however they are very devout evangelicals and I somewhat question their ultimate motives. They are great guys but I do wonder sometimes. I can't have discussions with anyone on much without the religious shit being thrown into it. My advice is to participate at places like this and if possible, find a local group so you can let your hair down and not have to think of how to phrase something to avoid pushing the discussion into the Jebus category. It can be very lonely but it doesn't have to be. And as stated previously, these people were NOT friends.

I understand your point re: these people not being true friends. But at the same time, people are so brainwashed by religion it overrides everything else, including their own way of thinking.

Some people are not capable of operating without religion and it spills into everything in their lives. I guess my point is, they could have been true friends, but the religious brainwashing and cult-like mentality made it difficult for them to separate friendship from someone who is denying God and going to hell. In other words, "if you are no friend of God's, you are no friend of mine" type deal.

In my church, allegiance to God/Jesus was top priority and everything else fell beneath that. If it wasn't something God would be happy with, then you should not be doing it, PERIOD.

I also think some true believers have doubts of their own and are so fearful of going to hell that anyone else with doubts is viewed as a threat to their own potential unbelief.

Additionally, atheists are constantly viewed as people with no morals by the church. It is reiterated over and over. If you are a hardcore believer, I think it can be difficult to maintain a friendship with a nonbeliever because I think the fear is that this "bad" atheist could lead you down a wrong path and then God will be pissed.

Then there are some who believe nonbelievers are being influenced by Satan Facepalm

My point is I don't necessarily blame believers for being fearful of atheists. They are brainwashed to believe a certain way. I think these people may have genuinely been friends, but were too scared due to religious beliefs and the psychological fear of hell to maintain a friendship with her.

Anyway, just my two cents Tongue

Valid points. Thanks for the perspective.

"If we are honest—and scientists have to be—we must admit that religion is a jumble of false assertions, with no basis in reality.
The very idea of God is a product of the human imagination."
- Paul Dirac
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