Scared About the Next Step
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28-08-2013, 01:57 PM
Scared About the Next Step
For the last twenty-something years of my life (which is the entirety of it), I have been surrounded by Christianity. Every minute of every day of my childhood was drilled in the Bible and its teachings--at home, at church, and eventually at school, too. I was homeschooled between 4th grade and college, for academic rather than religious reasons--the public schools in my childhood hometown suck--but my mother, unable to sufficiently teach math and science, turned to Bob Jones University's homeschool program for most of my education. (One quick off-topic rant: I loved being homeschooled and I CHOSE to stay with it because not being locked in a school building for 8 hours a day gave me the freedom to attend college-level classes, theater groups, martial arts, piano lessons, etc. It is a HUGE pet peeve of mine when people condescend to me about my high school social life.) I wasn't "deprived," per say (see above rant)--but I was sheltered, and I was definitely indoctrinated, and it's only been in the last couple of weeks that I've seriously begun to look at and question my beliefs.

I've been coming to this point for a long time, as each meaningless platitude, each word of prayer, each verse in each chapter of the Bible, has rung more and more false. But it's only been a few weeks that I've really started to name all my niggling doubt and shoved-down questions for what they are: my inability to believe any of it anymore. My eyes are opening--but I'm still so scared of what they will open up to. My family are Christians. My friends are Christians. The only way I've ever been allowed or have allowed myself to think about the world has been through a God filter. I want to take that step and declare my independence, or come out of the closet, or what have you--but I don't know how to do that, or what the consequences will be.
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28-08-2013, 02:26 PM
RE: Scared About the Next Step
You know your parents and friends best. What do you think their reaction will be if you tell them ? It's a difficult problem. You shouldn't have to fear telling people how you see the world but... humans are kinda preprogrammed to react negatively to anyone who's not part of the group, and Christians do generally devote a whole hell of a lot of sermon time to the evils of those who do not believe as they do... so it comes down to whether you hide it for the time being and grit your teeth, or whether you tell them...

If you hide it, you can just pay lip service - it's what I did for a long time. People were perfectly happy with me so long as I pretended to be a Christian, a bad Christian with loose morals, but a Christian. Attended the odd church service, went to the odd prayer group even... I liked my Christian friends, I still do...

If you decide not to hide it... just be gentle with friends and family Wink It might come as a huge shock to them, they might initially react in some seemingly quite nasty ways - mockery etc. They might try to debate you... I'd say also don't make a big deal of it. Tell those who're important to you and let others find out as and when necessary. My rule is that if someone asks me directly about my faith and the lack thereof I'll answer honestly but otherwise I tend to let them do their own thing. I use TTA as a place to vent... with my level of vindictiveness varying depending on how put upon I feel at home Tongue
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