Just need to vent...
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09-08-2015, 07:24 AM
RE: Just need to vent...
(09-08-2015 06:45 AM)Rkane819 Wrote:  RS and TOC: great dialogue. I appreciate hearing from you guys that are further along in the parenting process. I will keep all your ideas in mind.

Let me ask you guys this, one (sneaky?) plan I have is to not touch the issue of religion/belief unless she brings it up. However, what I have done a few times, and successfully I might add, is use the news cycle for this upcoming presidential election to talk about coming to conclusions on key issues. Such as, who are you going to vote for and why, climate change, gun control, abortion, etc... And how we use information to come to conclusions on these issues and there are always multiple opinions on these issues.

Just last night I had a mini breakthrough on gun control. now whether you all think we need more or less guns is besides the point, I just wanted to play Devils advocate to whatever stance she took. She took the stance of we need more because she works for a Xtian home building company full of good ol boys who like to hunt and are very pro gun. I showed her a clip of Jim Jefferies and his anti-gun take. After it was over she said, "wow, I hadn't thought of it like that. He made some good points. "

If I can get her to start questioning other assumptions she's made by seeking out differing opinions and using her logic skills to come to a conclusion then maybe the religious belief system will fall in line and she will at least examine it more thoroughly. Whether or not she maintains her Xtian status is fine so long as she does the homework.

I think gradually working ideas about assumptions into conversations is a good plan, if you can do it without seeming to condescend. Probably this won't be a problem at all for you, but I know being condescended to bugs a lot of women, including me. There's a difference, of course, in discussing an issue where you each have different conclusions, and explaining to each other why you've drawn those conclusions, and your asking a set of questions designed to lead her to your truth. The first is a dialogue between equals and the second is a teacher/student relationship. I hope that makes sense. In our house the death penalty is an issue where my husband and I strongly disagree and haven't yet really come to a meeting of the minds (this is also true of Tom Brady and "Deflategate").

From what you wrote in the opening, it looks as though she is actively doing research to understand her new faith. I can understand that all the literature around is annoying, but it also gives her lots of material to discuss, and if/when she eventually rejects Christianity, she will do it from a place of knowledge and will be more satisfied and at peace with her decision.
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09-08-2015, 07:58 AM (This post was last modified: 09-08-2015 08:07 AM by Rkane819.)
RE: Just need to vent...
TOC: I guess saying "sneaky" was a bad choice of words and I meant it as finding a way to get her to think more critically in all aspects of life and not "sneaking" in stuff about atheism per se. Although, to your point about what you said to your wife about communion, we recently watched the doc Going Clear about Scientology on HBO and she was apalled at what they do and believe. I didn't make any comparisons but I thought that was rather interesting.

Julep: thanks for your input and I'm trying hard to not be biased in any questions I ask. It's funny you mention the student/teacher thing as I'm a tennis instructor and my job is imparting my knowledge of the sport on beginners. Sometimes this carries over in real life in subjects I feel like I have more of a handle on than her. I'm working on reducing that.
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09-08-2015, 09:29 AM
RE: Just need to vent...
(09-08-2015 07:58 AM)Rkane819 Wrote:  TOC: I guess saying "sneaky" was a bad choice of words and I meant it as finding a way to get her to think more critically in all aspects of life and not "sneaking" in stuff about atheism per se. Although, to your point about what you said to your wife about communion, we recently watched the doc Going Clear about Scientology on HBO and she was apalled at what they do and believe. I didn't make any comparisons but I thought that was rather interesting.

Julep: thanks for your input and I'm trying hard to not be biased in any questions I ask. It's funny you mention the student/teacher thing as I'm a tennis instructor and my job is imparting my knowledge of the sport on beginners. Sometimes this carries over in real life in subjects I feel like I have more of a handle on than her. I'm working on reducing that.

I'm a teacher, too, and I have the same problem sometimes of forgetting to take off my teaching hat when I'm talking to my husband.
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09-08-2015, 09:49 AM
RE: Just need to vent...
(08-08-2015 11:16 AM)Rkane819 Wrote:  I've posted a handful of times on here about my wife's recent baptism and recommittment to Christianity and each time I get great advice and words of encouragement, so thank you all for that. It's been 3 months since her baptism and most days are good now but today isn't one of them. She doesn't preach at me or anything but because we don't go in depth on this topic sometimes I learn things on accident about how deeply committed she is now. Earlier today I went to get the mail and when sorting through it there was a large envelope from a ministry called Gospel for Asia. A quick google search showed many negative things about what they do with their money and they've been accused of misappropriating funds in the past. Their main stated mission is to bring the word to the unevangelized in Asia.

I want to ask her what her involvement with them is but each time I initiate a discussion on religion she tends to view it as an attack and will shut down and dig her feet in further. So I'm scared to mention it and then it turns into a circle of crazy scenarios going on in my head. Usually I work through it and realize my situation isn't dire, we have our health and are financially stable so maybe I'm just being a big baby. But it does bug me that I can't walk from the bedroom to the garage without seeing a bible, jesus calling devotional and an apologetics book or two and now checking the mail is dangerous as well.

If any of you are married to a theist what are your thoughts on this situation? Does it get better? Are you just numb to seeing bibles/apologetics books around the house? Do you have many open discussions about beliefs?

I think that what has worked so well for me and my Christian wife is that I have studied Christianity and the Bible for decades, and fully understand the belief systems that come with it.

I can actually teach my wife the meanings of anything Jesus is attributed as saying in the gospels. She listens to me intently, and always brings up questions of spirituality. I am her "go-to" guy on questions of her faith.

Yet I am an atheist and she knows it.

You see, I never condemn her faith. I never expect her to question it. I give no pressure whatsoever for her to become atheistic, agnostic, or anything else. Instead, I help her with her faith, and this builds trust and respect.

I understand how many atheists can be so gung-ho on propagating atheism, and denouncing religions. Publicly, such as forms as this one or in other real-life situations, I do it all the time.

But my home is my sanctuary. I love my wife and my family, and despite being an atheist I will fight to the death their right to believe what they choose to believe.

Do not fight it. Work with it so that she respects you, and then trusts your judgement. Let your honesty and integrity shine through. Let her see your good morals and let her wonder how you can have them while being an atheist.

It is then she will start asking you questions, and that is where she can begin to understand.

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09-08-2015, 05:55 PM (This post was last modified: 10-08-2015 12:32 PM by Rkane819.)
RE: Just need to vent...
Thanks for the thoughts Free: the path of least resistance is usually the way to go.
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