how to tell my parents of my deconversion
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23-08-2013, 07:40 AM (This post was last modified: 24-08-2013 07:32 AM by guitarist.)
how to tell my parents of my deconversion
This is probably a common experience lots of atheists face and there may be a thread about this already, but I just wanna get this off my chest.

I'm a 14 year old guy from a 4 person protestant christian family (Mum, Dad, older sis also in teens and me) residing in Singapore. Basically I come from a bible presbytarian church with strict teachings (no smoking, drinking, clubbing etc) and have been there since I was born (my parents started attending during late teens/early twentys). I was converted when I was 11-12 because of problems in school. I don't really remember my conversion, but I remember saying the sinner's prayer (the conversion prayer,the only prayer that a sinner can pray). I have lived my life in fear, fear that God will send me to hell, fear that my friends will go to hell, fear that I'm not being a good testimony for God to 'point others to Christ' (I would guilt trip myself after I did something 'worldly' like cussing) and much more. I was so stressed by christianity. When I was a christian, I felt God with me and would thank God even for bad things that happened (my parents always told me that it was part of God's perfect plan). I would see the world through close minded glasses, unnecessarily worrying that my non christian friends would be sent to hell. I even worried about my christian cousin having a non-christian husband (the church even preached against marriages of different religions). I lived fearfully (especially about not being a good testimony) and with a closed mind.

Well, I just wanna ask, should I come out and tell my family? And how? I don't have any 'deep' reason, only the ones I stated above. Or should I just wait till I'm 18 or something?

Hope this doesn't sound like just some angsty rant or something.
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23-08-2013, 08:22 AM
RE: how to tell my parents of my deconversion
Honestly? I'd wait. As a minor you're totally dependent on them, and you do not want to screw up that relationship. It can sound a little dishonest to frame it that way, but you don't know how they'll react; it might only be something they can deal with at a distance, and you don't have that distance.

... Or they might be calm and patient and just pray for you behind closed doors. You're the one who knows them. How do you think they might react?

At the same time, you don't want to force yourself to play along, to act dishonestly, to hide part of yourself.

Thus ends my utterly inconclusive advice.

... this is my signature!
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23-08-2013, 08:36 AM
RE: how to tell my parents of my deconversion
Which part of SG are you from?

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23-08-2013, 08:50 AM
RE: how to tell my parents of my deconversion
(23-08-2013 08:36 AM)DLJ Wrote:  Which part of SG are you from?

Central-ish... what about it?
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23-08-2013, 08:53 AM
RE: how to tell my parents of my deconversion
(23-08-2013 08:50 AM)guitarist Wrote:  
(23-08-2013 08:36 AM)DLJ Wrote:  Which part of SG are you from?

Central-ish... what about it?

Spoken like a true guitarist. Tongue

"It's a most distressing affliction to have a sentimental heart and a skeptical mind.”
― نجيب محفوظ, Sugar Street
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23-08-2013, 08:56 AM
RE: how to tell my parents of my deconversion
(23-08-2013 08:53 AM)evenheathen Wrote:  
(23-08-2013 08:50 AM)guitarist Wrote:  Central-ish... what about it?

Spoken like a true guitarist. Tongue

hehe guess my username is a bit pretentious... but I couldn't really think of anything else. Didn't wanna put my name for obvious reasons
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23-08-2013, 09:03 AM
RE: how to tell my parents of my deconversion
(23-08-2013 08:56 AM)guitarist Wrote:  
(23-08-2013 08:53 AM)evenheathen Wrote:  Spoken like a true guitarist. Tongue

hehe guess my username is a bit pretentious... but I couldn't really think of anything else. Didn't wanna put my name for obvious reasons

Big Grin

The name isn't in and of it's self pretentious, but as a guitarist I recognize the implications. Tongue

"It's a most distressing affliction to have a sentimental heart and a skeptical mind.”
― نجيب محفوظ, Sugar Street
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23-08-2013, 09:39 AM
RE: how to tell my parents of my deconversion
(23-08-2013 08:22 AM)cjlr Wrote:  Honestly? I'd wait. As a minor you're totally dependent on them, and you do not want to screw up that relationship. It can sound a little dishonest to frame it that way, but you don't know how they'll react; it might only be something they can deal with at a distance, and you don't have that distance.

... Or they might be calm and patient and just pray for you behind closed doors. You're the one who knows them. How do you think they might react?

At the same time, you don't want to force yourself to play along, to act dishonestly, to hide part of yourself.

Thus ends my utterly inconclusive advice.

Thanks for the reply. I know what you mean man. They aren't really the type who would like beat me or anything but religion is something we talk about a lot at home. They are always encouraging me to attend church activities (being really pushy, though they don't really force me). My mum might give me a cold shoulder and they would be all like 'why are you so stubborn' or something.
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23-08-2013, 09:48 AM
RE: how to tell my parents of my deconversion
(23-08-2013 08:50 AM)guitarist Wrote:  
(23-08-2013 08:36 AM)DLJ Wrote:  Which part of SG are you from?

Central-ish... what about it?

Outram.

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23-08-2013, 11:40 AM
RE: how to tell my parents of my deconversion
I have to agree with cjlr. Wait, if at all possible. You are in a vulnerable position and even if you inwardly cringe every time they start with the god shit you really can't take the chance that they would make your life a living hell while trying to "save" you (religious types are so pretentious!) from it.

See if you can develop some outside interests. If you have things you'd rather do than church activities they may put it off as a "phase." You're at the age for it. I frequently tell my two that they were lucky to make it to 15 because when they were 14 they were such assholes.

Come here to vent. Don't tell them off. You have too much to lose. Yes, it is dishonest....but so is religion.
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