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Everything posted by RenaissanceWoman

  1. Deep breath, here goes... I have been completely on your side this whole time, but you said some things in your last update that make me kind of wonder. Staying up late so you can't get up to help with the kids? Seriously, that is a dick thing to do. She specifically asked for your help, you admit it was a stressful time for her, and you kept denying her the help she asked for -- for a year? I would have divorced you after about three weeks. I admit, I had post partum depression, so the early years (and I only have one kid!) were devastatingly overwhelming for me. (I was still work
  2. "God is riding YOUR coattails!" I admit, even when I was heavy into the faith, I often got annoyed when people said my musical ability was a gift from God. Ummm, no... My dad paid for years of piano lessons, my mom drove me and my sister to lessons every week, I practiced (often kicking and screaming) almost every day. For my trumpet, I played every day in band class at school from 5th grade to 12th, plus all those band camps and football games and concerts and all that. I put in my time! And before every service here as an adult I practice at home for at least 15-20 hours per week (becaus
  3. You mentioned that he could retire in 2018. I would suggest that you go once a quarter = 4 times a year. That's about 10 times until he retires. As someone else said, it truly does not take much to keep up appearances. Why exactly do the kids have to go along? Even if they are not getting anything from it theologically, they are making little friends. (Yes, we know they are not real "friends", but with kids, it feels like friends to them.) If you attend too much, they will be making little bonds. I am still dealing with sadness over broken bonds from my daughter's time in church, and it ha
  4. It sounds to me like she is looking for something new, to break out of the church crap she's currently experiencing (whatever that may be: theological, social, boredom, etc.). So perhaps she is moving to a grass-is-greener new club. New people, new social opportunities, new opportunities to serve and "grow", new ways of looking at the bible, a fresh start. But we all know, she is going to face the same dilemmas she has already experienced: evil church people, messed up theology, women's issues, unanswered questions, and the list could go on and on. I bet she knew, like you did, that someth
  5. Wow, I'm sorry to hear about that. I totally understand being away while you're dealing with this family crisis. I was away for several months, over a year ago, when I was helping with my dying brother. Oh I had plenty of downtime -- oh the long, agonizing down time! -- but didn't have the head space to come here. I guess we were focused on our little circle, and I was internalizing stuff, and I was keeping oh so busy with stuff, and I didn't want to come out of that for a while. Maybe I should have. But I totally get where you are coming from. Do what you gotta do for your family and for your
  6. I sort of get the memory wipe concept. But that doesn't add any comfort in the here and now. If the non-believer dies first, the believer has conscious life to fret about that lost soul. My younger brother died last year, and he was an atheist. My deeply believing father, based on our family genetics, has probably 20 more years to live, tortured by the idea that his beloved only son is burning in hell. I'm sure he will go through all types of mental gymnastics, especially since my brother was baptized as an infant, confirmed as a young teen, did all the communion stuff and all that... So m
  7. Thanks for the update, Insightful. I am weirdly interested in your story, so I appreciate you sharing with us. You have rocked her to her core, and that is going to take some time to sink in. My neighbors and I are in a bit of a battle with a trashy neighbor on my street. We initiated legal action, but the lawyer warned us that it could backfire: "This guy is not going to give in, he will only dig in." You know your wife and have to honestly ask yourself which of these she will do -- give in / accept it and find peace, or dig in and make you even more miserable. The friend I mentioned
  8. Your Grace Is Enough, Matt Maher. Man, I could bang it out on the piano in praise band, and add my vocal harmonies under the guitar guys and the soprano diva. And our drummer -- bring it! Sorry Lilith, I kinda liked that one. OK, back to the topic a hand... Yeah, why were we reminding him to remember us? Oh duh... so dumb.
  9. I remember as a small child being a little freaked out about God seeing me everywhere I go, and there's no way I could hide. I had nothing to hide, really, but it just felt creepy. I guess I was supposed to be comforted by God always being with me, but for some reason it felt invasive and threatening. I used to wonder things like -- if I hide under my bed and stack stuff around me on all sides, maybe then God can't see me? Or hide in the closet behind all the clothes and stuff, with the lights off, maybe? Or find a deep dark cave to hide away? (No caves in the flat lands of Ohio, darn it.)
  10. "The people I met were all very friendly and loving..." Yeah, until something happens or someone says the wrong thing, and they're not. Just my experience.
  11. I'm sure there are lots of 5-year-olds around the world, suffering in terrible ways, who are asking the same question. Have you since had a private conversation with him about this question, away from your wife? But if you do, he could innocently spill your beans to her, so it's kind of a pickle. At least he's figuring it out. Good for you for not feeling pressure to spout some "mysterious ways" crap to appease your wife in the car.
  12. Wow, Insightful, that sounds like quite the conversation you had. Good for you! What has been happening since then? Is there any movement from her? Have you met with an attorney to get your ducks in a row? It may be time to get advice on what to start documenting. There's no easy way to say this, but you need to start planning your escape from this abuse, while keeping your rights intact regarding the kids. Please keep in mind that you need to be ahead of the game. If this progresses to splitting up, and the people at her church get wind of it, she is going to be bombarded with advice
  13. Nice responses so far, interesting perspectives. I think ficino is on to something with the third-wheel feeling she may have. You and your bf are atheists, are a couple, have your own thing going ... so where does that leave her? I'm sure you are not an us-against-her kind of situation, but with her depression and your happier couplehood, it could just be awkward for her. Since she is doing the Women's Cell things, she seems to be reaching out to other people for social interaction. Maybe she feels included in something that way. Is there something that the two of you used to do togeth
  14. I think there's a third answer, if you don't mind me adding: - God is not powerful enough to do anything (and thus not worth praying to for anything, and again -- unworthy of worship) But never mind, since I'm going with the "doesn't exist" option.
  15. I personally haven't found anything in this thread to be anti-woman. The only thing mildly annoying is that some well-meaning people seem to want to protect us poor weak women from a problem that doesn't really exist. That's a little demeaning to me as a woman, I suppose. Yes, some men (and women) are clueless, rude, and/or inappropriate in public. They should be called out as needed, with proper authorities involved if warranted. The rest of this seems like much ado about nothing.
  16. Can you explain what you mean about leaving them in the lurch? Were you donating so much time, talent, and/or money that the organization will collapse without you? Or more of a personal thing: that they were so nice to you, but now you just disappear with no explanation? If it's the former, then I say, just relax. They will adapt and survive. Someone else will fill your space. They may have to cut back on something or prod others to volunteer, but they will move on without you. I was an integral part of a core activity in my church, and I kind of hoped it would all fall apart when I left.
  17. I would suggest that you just swing by the church some time during the week to drop off the books and whatnot. Unless it's a small church, there should be office hours of some sort. You could also show up very early, like 30 minutes before the service starts, knowing that the doors will be open and someone will be there. (Most parishioners will show up 5-10 minutes before the service, so going early will avoid most of them, and avoid any begging for you to come sit with them during the service.) Whatever usher or musician you bump into that early, just say you're running late for something els
  18. I'm always confused by people who talk about their personal experience but completely ignore actual data. Personal experience is valuable! No one would ever claim otherwise. But only a foolish person would assume their personal experience was the end of the question, and data does in fact actually exist. But the data in these cases is by its very nature subjective as it depends on the interpretation of the individual reporting. I agree, Vigile. When I read the stats listed on the previous page, I had to wonder. If I were being surveyed and the questioner asked if I had ever ex
  19. Wow, that was so uncomfortable on so many levels. I think I need some brain bleach. Ick. "That body can't be properly nourished if it's head is burdened with sinful distractions." Oh my, ha ha ha!
  20. He says, "Most people will get down and wallow in the unbelief and in the fear and all of this..." I say, the danger is when a believer gets down and wallows in the belief. That is what causes all manner of self-hate, fear, doubting, and mental health problems. As for the miscarriage angle... I can't think of anything to say. It's just so... wrong.
  21. Personally, I like when people stare at me. I take care of myself and always try to dress decent when in public. If someone else appreciates that, I take it as a compliment. When I drive on the interstate with the top down on my car, truckers sometimes honk at me as I pass. I just wave and speed up a little. If seeing a chick in a convertible makes them smile and communicate with me, that's cool by me. Have a nice trip, dude. If I see an attractive person (man or woman) out and about, I tend to look too. (Look, not stare.) What is it about that person that is so striking? Posture, hair
  22. Wow, Leo, such an interesting angle. Thanks for sharing that! So maybe Insightful could encourage his wife to switch churches, start fresh. Probably won't happen, but I think it may help, as you suggest. Get her out of the victim rut she doesn't even know she's in. Scary.
  23. Oh boy, I heard the same crap! I had no trouble getting pregnant, but I kept miscarrying in the second month. People said the same things to me that they said to you, about relaxing and it will happen, and how other people went for adoption and then got pregnant, and various fertility treatment stories. And I would have to remind them that getting pregnant was not the problem; staying pregnant was the problem. (Obviously I had a hormone issue, so maybe it was sort of the same, but it didn't feel like these well-wishers knew the difference.) I think they just thought they "knew" something that
  24. Come to think of it, yes, this is what I recall too. I was in school late 70s to late 80s. I wonder if any of that has changed now 30 years later, if atheist groups are making any headway? Maybe teachers then were too scared to push evolution too hard for fear of community backlash, but now they realize they have the law on their side. Can anyone else attest? P.S. Nice to see you again, Raoul.
  25. Wow, I think you're on to something here. That is just awful. Insightful, we like you as the person!
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