Author Topic: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer  (Read 3952 times)

Asherah

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Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« on: April 06, 2012, 09:10:15 PM »
So, my departure from Christianity is very recent. I just stopped tithing this month and I've not gone to church for the last three weeks. So, my mom asked what service I was going to for Easter and I just had to tell her that I'm not going. And, she asked why, and I told her that I didn't believe in any of it. She asked why and I told her a bit about my reasons. I feel really shitty. I just hate being the one who's fallen off the wagon. I'd rather be normal and believe like everyone else. I'm just really really sad and on the verge of tears. I hate how things have turned out for me. I wish I was a Christian. I wish I could believe. Just posting this hoping for some encouragement.

Thanks.
As a scientist, I am hostile to fundamentalist religion because it actively debauches the scientific enterprise. It teaches us not to change our minds, and not to want to know exciting things that are available to be known. It subverts science and saps the intellect. - Dawkins

Tank

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Re: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« Reply #1 on: April 06, 2012, 09:19:45 PM »
So, my departure from Christianity is very recent. I just stopped tithing this month and I've not gone to church for the last three weeks. So, my mom asked what service I was going to for Easter and I just had to tell her that I'm not going. And, she asked why, and I told her that I didn't believe in any of it. She asked why and I told her a bit about my reasons. I feel really shitty. I just hate being the one who's fallen off the wagon. I'd rather be normal and believe like everyone else. I'm just really really sad and on the verge of tears. I hate how things have turned out for me. I wish I was a Christian. I wish I could believe. Just posting this hoping for some encouragement.

Thanks.
Mixed feeling for you after reading this. On the one hand I'm delighted that you have found your way out from under the comfort blanket, but that has left you feeling so bereft. All I can say is that having never been a believer; welcome to my world, although you have obviously had a difficult journey getting here. 

((hugs))
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Asherah

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Re: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2012, 09:46:01 PM »
Thanks, Tank  :)
As a scientist, I am hostile to fundamentalist religion because it actively debauches the scientific enterprise. It teaches us not to change our minds, and not to want to know exciting things that are available to be known. It subverts science and saps the intellect. - Dawkins

Ali

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Re: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2012, 10:01:22 PM »
I'm sorry you're feeling so down. I think it's perfectly fine to mourn for something that you used to have that brought you comfort and companionship.  I do want to tell you though that being a non-believer doesn't come with any rules except those that you set for yourself.  So for example, I am doing Passover tonight and tomorrow night with my ILs, even though I am an atheist (and so is my husband) because it's family time, and it's important to them, and it's part of the cultural traditions that hubby grew up with.  Then I'll be having Easter dinner with my parents on Sunday and watching T open his Easter basket and find eggs.  I'm not going to church with them, but only because I don't want to.  I can still do the fun things that I enjoy with my family.  So can you, if you want.  If you want to go to church with your family, go.  Who does it hurt?  If you don't want to go, don't, maybe have dinner with them instead.  The point is, you get to choose what you give up and what you don't.  Whatever you choose is fine.

DeterminedJuliet

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Re: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2012, 10:02:13 PM »
I've been there. It can be unsettling, but give yourself some time. And you certainly shouldn't feel badly. You don't "owe" your beliefs to anyone and you're only being honest - there's nothing to feel bad about. It's normal to feel a bit lost/guilty about leaving the church, but I' sure, in time, you'll feel liberated.  :)
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Re: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« Reply #5 on: April 06, 2012, 10:10:16 PM »
I'm sorry you're feeling so down. I think it's perfectly fine to mourn for something that you used to have that brought you comfort and companionship.  I do want to tell you though that being a non-believer doesn't come with any rules except those that you set for yourself.  So for example, I am doing Passover tonight and tomorrow night with my ILs, even though I am an atheist (and so is my husband) because it's family time, and it's important to them, and it's part of the cultural traditions that hubby grew up with.  Then I'll be having Easter dinner with my parents on Sunday and watching T open his Easter basket and find eggs.  I'm not going to church with them, but only because I don't want to.  I can still do the fun things that I enjoy with my family.  So can you, if you want.  If you want to go to church with your family, go.  Who does it hurt?  If you don't want to go, don't, maybe have dinner with them instead.  The point is, you get to choose what you give up and what you don't.  Whatever you choose is fine.

Good advice.

I'd say that while you are still in the early "stage" of disbelief, don't purposely avoid family time simply because that time might involve church or the like.  You can disbelieve while you still grieve that you've fallen off the wagon.  You'll soon be more confident in your stand, and more comfortable with your place within the family as time goes on.  Hopefully my words are understood.   

Traveler

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Re: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« Reply #6 on: April 06, 2012, 10:33:03 PM »
(((Asherah)))
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Re: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« Reply #7 on: April 06, 2012, 11:52:57 PM »
Give yourself some time, you've just left Christianity, but it will get better, whatever you choose to do. :) I've never been a Christian, so I can't really say I know what you're going through, but I know a few people who have decribed the grief they felt to be more or less what you're feeling now.

I guess I speak for everybody here when I say that we're all very supportive of you. Keep us posted :)
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Re: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« Reply #8 on: April 07, 2012, 02:45:29 AM »
*hugs Asherah*

I understand, I've been there before. It's hard to believe for so long, and then to become a nonbeliever. It's even harder when your family and friends don't know yet. In many ways, you're mourning the loss... not just of your beliefs, but a 'relationship', in a sense. You believed you had a relationship with God. I assume you believed he was your 'heavenly father', or perhaps at least a friend. In a way, it's like going through a breakup or a death. It's really rough on you, and I totally get that. Just know that it does take time, and it will get better over time.

Also, don't feel like you have to do everything at once. Like Ali said, what you do is up to you. Celebrate holidays the best way you know how to, or would like to. I'm proud of you, though. If you really felt like you needed to tell your mom what was on your mind and your heart... I know it wasn't easy to do so, but you did it anyways. That's tough, but getting something off your chest may make you feel better, in the long run.

Finally, you know your family and friends and who might be supportive among those people, so try and seek them out... but we're here, too. :) You're not alone. *hugs again*

P.S. - please check for a PM from me.


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Asherah

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Re: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« Reply #9 on: April 07, 2012, 03:23:36 AM »
Thanks so much for all the replies. Knowing that I can choose what I want to do and not do does take some pressure off. I decided to go to church on Sunday after all. But, not because I believe in it, obviously, but because my husband would like to go. Also, there's some kind of comfort that I get from going back. But, that'll be the last visit until....Christmas maybe....ha! I'm looking forward to this grief wearing off. After each bout of sadness I go through, I feel a little stronger on the other side. I'm glad that you all care to hear what's going on with me. I will keep you all updated. Thanks again.  :)
As a scientist, I am hostile to fundamentalist religion because it actively debauches the scientific enterprise. It teaches us not to change our minds, and not to want to know exciting things that are available to be known. It subverts science and saps the intellect. - Dawkins

history_geek

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Re: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« Reply #10 on: April 07, 2012, 04:10:22 AM »
Like xSilverPhinx, I've never been a believer either, and I agree with her. Hiljaa hyvä tulee/Slow is good (or "the best (outcome) is achieved slowly", which might be a more accurate translation), as they say.

Also, considering your last post, I think another important thing is that you do things as you feel comfortable. I think AnimatedDirt also put things quite nicely.

Kyllä se siitä lähtee (the general meaning of this saying is to encourage someone who has started something, and that things will now move along).

Also, I might not post/speak a lot, but if need be I can be one hell of a listener ;D
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Too Few Lions

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Re: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« Reply #11 on: April 07, 2012, 10:22:29 AM »
what great advice from everybody, hope you're feeling ok Asherah. Like everyone's already said, take your time over it and go at a pace that feels comfortable to you. Hopefully you'll come to realise that life can be just as good for you as a non-Christian, and possibly even better.

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Re: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« Reply #12 on: April 07, 2012, 11:51:24 AM »
All I can say is that having never been a believer; welcome to my world
It is and it is not though. I think there is often some difference between the ex-theist's and the never-theist's world. For one, we can not miss that which we never had.
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Tank

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Re: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« Reply #13 on: April 07, 2012, 11:56:21 AM »
All I can say is that having never been a believer; welcome to my world
It is and it is not though. I think there is often some difference between the ex-theist's and the never-theist's world. For one, we can not miss that which we never had.
Oh I agree. An ex-theist and a never-theist must have very different perceptions of the atheist world. For the former it is often a big change in outlook and un-learning process while for the never-theist it's more like 'What you worried about? This is always the way it's been.'

EDIT: I like the term never-theist I can see myself using that a lot.
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Re: Well....I have to come out this Easter as a non-church goer
« Reply #14 on: April 07, 2012, 12:20:48 PM »
Yup, you finally reach the moment when you have to come out of the closet.  It's not easy, it feels insecure and scary and exposed.  But you're doing the right thing and the dust will settle down soon enough.

We're here for you.  All the best, Asherah.