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About Tiacapan

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    North West, UK
  • Interests
    Psychology, counselling, my kids, personal development, challenging myself, mountain biking and generally keeping fit and healthy, Creating yummy meals, having fun, good conversations, dancing, practising spanish, good films, comedy…...
  • More About Me
    I am from the UK, brought up a born again christian and i was very devout until i was at uni at 18/19 when it all fell apart a bit as i just couldnt get christianity to fit with what i was experiencing of life so i kinda put god 'on hold' and went out and stopped worrying about it and enjoyed myself. Best thing i ever did. However, there was always the background guilt and familial pressure to get back with god. Had various sincere attempts at this but could never really be anything other than a very liberal christian with my own ideas on everything that didn't really fit in with the other christians. Anyway….eventually about 8 years ago when a few things happened at the same time that made me think - i have never really explored the alternative view to christianity, the arguments against it…i had only ever looked to christian apologetics to explain things…what a glaring oversight and i have no idea why i hadn't thought of it before but i started to look at the atheist literature at long last….read a huge pile of books which finally opened my eyes and i was set free - at last - at the age of 32!!!

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  • Still have any Gods? If so, who or what?

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  1. Yes, thats a very good idea, will do!
  2. First, a little intro - I was raised in the UK in an evangelical christian family and started my long road to atheism when I left home at 18 to go to university until 9 years ago at age 32 when the last shreds of belief in god vanished. During that time i joined ex-christian.net and found an invaluable source of affirmation and support. I have re-joined recently as i knew i would soon be starting my dissertation research on the deconversion process and thought this was a good place to be during this time. There is not much research done about people who deconvert from christianity especially from a UK perspective and i wanted to do something about it. So with that aim in mind I am hoping there may be someone reading here who would be interested in talking about their experiences or who may know someone who would be interested. I'm guessing its a long shot as there are not too many people from the UK on Ex.C so far as i can see and i need people who were raised in and currently live in the UK. But still, i thought I would put my information out here anyway and see what happens. So to that end…here are some details… Currently I am a final year student at the University of Chester studying an MA Clinical Counselling. I am looking for participants for my research dissertation who are from the UK and have been practicing Evangelical Christians in the past and who now identify as Agnostic or Atheist. Participation involves a semi-structured interview lasting approximately 1 hour, which ideally would be conducted in person but use of Skype/Facetime is also an option. If you are interested and would like to know more please message me on here and I will give you more details. Thank you!
  3. So sorry daisyfields that you are feeling so bad right now :0( I can relate to your sense of isolation and having no community. I am a single mum with 3 kids and it would be the easiest thing in the world to start going to my mums church which is good in that the people are very lovely, there are lots of young families and activities going on for me and the kids to get involved with and make friends. But obviously I just couldn’t pretend like that :0) And like you, in our society, without church it is really hard to create that community that we are so used to. Its a sad thing and tough to deal with. It sounds like you are really struggling and need more support and help. Do you have friends and family you can reach out to? Also I know the wait list is long for getting more professional help but its worth getting the ball rolling rather than look back in 6 months still feeling bad and wishing you had asked for help earlier. And finally, although this sounds like a cliché, what has really helped me through very tough times is to totally love, spoil, adore and pamper myself. It was something I learned mainly through my divorce process…that I had to love and spoil myself because No one, absolutely no-one else was going to do that for me. I learnt to put ME first rather than let all those old god-tapes (god first, then others, then yourself ) continue to dominate me. Its not selfish, its survival. Do whatever it is you need to do to make yourself happy and enjoying your life, you deserve it absolutely xx
  4. I'm doing an MA in counselling and thought the dissertation might be a nice opportunity to explore something around the experience of losing your faith or maybe being brought up 'born again' and your feelings about it now that you don't believe…something like that. I have Marlene Winells book "leaving the fold' and i had thought it could be like an addition to her section on issues in recovery from religion such as sense of self, emotional struggles etc. Its a qualitative study and i would be interviewing about 4 - 6 people on their experiences…so its an in-depth study of personal experience rather than a statistical study. Anyway…I'm really, really struggling to find any academic research as a starting point/background for my discussion. With the exception of the books "leaving the fold' and 'Breaking their will', all there seems to be is research discussing/demonstrating how religion is good for your health and mental health and how people who have religion score better on EVERYTHING ) There is stuff on cults but then i would have to argue how mainstream christian beliefs can act as cults and then i don't know if i'm straying too far into atheist and theological arguments etc and if the tutors will frown upon this argument generally and decide that i am discussing theology instead of counselling issues. So, i am concerned on 2 levels. Firstly, that i might have to abandon the topic as there is not enough backdrop for it and so it will be difficult to prove that i am researching something sufficiently worthwhile. And secondly, I am disturbed on a personal level that the academic research seems to almost completely ignore any of the detrimental effects of mainstream religion and of subsequently leaving that religion. I know this phenomena is real as i have been through it all myself and have read many similar experiences of others on this site and others but it feels like our experiences are being discounted. In my research i came across this quote from richard dawkins website with regard to the author of leaving the fold: Two years ago, Winell made waves by formally labeling what she calls “Religious Trauma Syndrome” (RTS) and beginning towrite and speak on the subject for professional audiences. When the British Association of Behavioral and Cognitive Psychologists published a series of articles on the topic, members of a Christian counseling association protested what they called excessive attention to a “relatively niche topic.” One commenter said, “A religion, faith or book cannot be abuse but the people interpreting can make anything abusive.” That last line…..sigh... Can anyone point me in the right direction? Is Winell really the only one out there trying to address this issue from an academic psychological/therapy perspective? If you read all this thank you so much!
  5. I went to israel with a group when i was 17. I grew up born again christian and still believed it all at that point. It was something that lots of christians and christian family members i knew had done and they raved about it so i was expecting a huge, deep spiritual experience but it was not like that for me at all. Like someone else said it just felt very touristy, i didn't have any big spiritual awakenings or feelings and i just got really pissed off with the men who lived there (not sure what nationality/group they were) who were very slimy and gropey cos me and the 2 friends i was with in the group were young and foreign. I ended up hitting one of them as he was slithering his shaky hand up and down my friends back and she was such a shy person she wouldnt do anything…it caused the group of men he was with on camels to turn very nasty, saying horrible things whilst i was cross eyed with rage and we were quickly rescued by some of the older ladies in the group…so basically that is my defining memory of israel :0) Never again!!! Grrrrrr…. :0)) That was 23 years ago though so maybe times have changed :0))
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