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Two Months Post Deconversion


FloridaGirl
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Hi everyone,

 

It has been two months since my deconversion. At first, I was left with pretty much no one and nothing since all my friends, hobbies, and interests were related to Christianity. Now I feel like a completely different person. I feel completely different than the person I was before becoming a Christian and different than the person I was as a Christian. My values have completely changed.

 

After suffering for my whole life with severe depression, I have developed compassion towards those who are suffering and a huge passion for social justice. I am planning on getting my masters in social work. Instead of seeking relief for depression by trying to fill a God shaped hole in my life, I have learned to experience true joy.

 

I still go to church with my boyfriend because I am not ready to tell him I am not a Christian yet. I used to find the hour long Catholic masses so moving and powerful. Now this hour drags on forever. I zone out about everything between what I am going to have for dinner, my plans for next week, how silly the homily is, how I ever believed it all in the first place, and checking out the girls outfits during communion to get fashion ideas. An experience that used to be the center of my life has become utterly devoid of meaning.

 

I am also dreading living in the Campus Crusade for Christ house next year that I have already signed the lease on. I have decided that since I have already signed the lease, I will stay there unless things get unbearably stressful.

 

I am dealing with the loneliness of hiding my deconversion from friends and my boyfriend. The only people

I have told are my nonreligious parents. I don't want to destroy any of the relationships I have built with people. I am also discovering the joy of finding a passion that gives me a reason to wake up in the morning. It gives me more joy than anything in Christianity has ever given me. It is really hard to leave my internsip of teaching reading to ESL and GED students because I enjoy it so much. Hours can go by without me even noticing.

 

Yeah. A bunch of random stuff has happened these past couple of months. I just felt like venting and wanted to know if any of you have experiebnced this as a result of your deconversion- that the world around you suddenly began to feel entirely different. If so, what have your experiences been like?

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That sucks that you still have to go to church and that you've got to move into some "Campus Crusade for Christ" house. It sounds like a strange name for a house anyway. It's awesome that you did have someone you could talk to about your deconversion. If your parents had been Christians, this site would be the only place you could go to.

 

All that really changed for me when I deconverted were my values and my morality. Now I no longer view actions that don't hurt anyone (except for the massive ego of some imaginary being) as immoral, it's actually kind of nice to view actions that lead to unnecessary suffering as immoral and things that cause no harm or suffering at all as perfectly acceptable, instead of terribly evil and deserving death or torture.

 

The world around me hasn't changed much. It's still the same crappy, but at times awesome, world it has always been, but the way I look at it has changed. It's alright if you posted twice. Double posts can be annoying when they unintentionally happen. I know it annoys me when I do it.

 

It's awesome that you found something that you enjoy that makes you want to get up every morning. I haven't yet found that same joy for myself yet, but hopefully I will soon.

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If i were you, i'd have some living arrangements in mind, in case the others in the Campus Crusade house decide to be jerks and bully you for not buying what they have to sell. This way, if or when the final straw incident happens, you've got something to fall back on. For this reason, i'd make sure to be ready to move at a moment's notice. There is absolutely no reason you have to put up with disrespect and abuse. Hope for the best, but be prepared for the worst.

 

I've pretty much gone back to the ideas and worldviews i had before xtianity came along. I tried the xtian worldviews on for size for awhile, and i've since decided they are no longer worth having. My outlook on things has changed for the better since i left that garbage behind in favor of what really matters in life. It feels like i have a new perspective on things now that xtianity and religion is no longer a part of my life.

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I am sorry. Unfortunately, deconversion is not an easy process.  I too am still dealing with how to approach important people in my life about my beliefs. My thoughts go out to you.

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Hi Amy.  Glad to hear you still have your parents.  As fellow (ex) convert Christian, I'm likewise happy that after leaving Christianity I could talk to my parents about it.  It's hard, telling your Christian friends that you're not a Christian anymore.  You may no longer share their beliefs, but that doesn't change your feelings of friendship for them, right?  Ironically, only Christians think that way.

 

I too noticed a sharp change in my outlook and worldview when I left Christianity.  I was free to enjoy things I hadn't before, and couldn't enjoy things I had in the past.  But it was freeing, over all, to know that everything doesn't have to relate back to Jesus and to be done for his glory.

 

Thankfully I never got involved with any Christian women, and my girlfriend (well actually fiancee) is thoroughly Hindu.  I imagine this must be the difficult point for you.  Not trying to make things harder, but if I may ask: what's the end game here?  If you guys are going to stay together, are you going to feign being a Christian on a permanent basis?  A lot of Catholics are tolerant of other faiths (and no faith).  Perhaps it wouldn't be such an issue if you told him the truth?

 

Of course I realize this is far easier said than done...

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Guest r3alchild

FloridaGirl,

 

Its sad that you had to go through what you did

 

A life wrapped in a prison that no god could ever give

 

Not even with all the things you wanted to be

 

But somehow you broke free

 

And now everyone seems like someone else

 

But you don't care anymore

 

Because you know its better just being you than all the lies you ever knew

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Stop reading my posts and telling my parents. This site is supposed to be confidential. You're a jerk and a jack ass whoever you are. Thanks also for hurting my folks. Good Christian actions. NOT.

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Deconversion is painful. For me, when the light bulb switched on, it was so cathartic and joyful. In my experience, Christianity was like having a gun to your head, and the notion of free will was some sort of cruel joke. Now, however, i'm battling a bit of depression, and not because i miss my old life, but because i feel like such a total idiot for buying into the bullshit, hook, line and sinker. I made some ridiculous professions about my faith to friends and family, as well as making judgments about other people's souls. I'm so ashamed, and am battling to regain the trust of people whom i love.

 

I hope you all heal and grow from your deconversion experiences..

 

I can't wait until I can laugh at myself about all of this.. yellow.gif  

 

Peace,

DAZE

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DAZE, I hear ya! Please don't waste too much time being mad at yourself. If you poke around here long enough and read even a little bit, you will soon realize that there are plenty of people smarter than you and me (I mean that in a nice way, no offense) who were taken in longer and harder than we were. All of us were duped, or we we wouldn't be here ranting and encouraging others.

 

From what I can tell, there are two main characteristics of good ex-Christians: They are the smart ones (thought it through, researched it out, and were brave enough to break away), and they were the most devout ones (followed the rabbit hole all the way to the end and gave it all they had). I'm beginning to think these two things are necessary to "see the light" so to speak.

 

What I'm trying to say is: You are smart, and you did everything right. That's why you are here.

 

Depression is no small thing. I encourage you to focus on that "cathartic and joyful" light bulb moment. Focus on your freedom from sin and all your new free time. You have a whole new life ahead of you!

 

Don't feel guilty about your anger either. I'm sure it is justified. It's natural, and not a sin! We all suffered through (and some of us still are in) the anger phase, and it is very cleansing. This might sound cheesy, but sitting down and listing all the people and ideas and situations you are angry about really helps. Organize your thoughts and get it out of your system. Your brain might be a jumble of emotions and random thoughts right now, and that can be overwhelming. At the end of this exercise, you will probably be even more pissed off and depressed for a moment, seeing it all written out, so be sure to have something lined up to reward yourself after you rip up your piece of paper -- a bike ride, a stiff drink, favorite movie, good sex, whatever.

 

If you are struggling with depression, there is no shame in getting some help. All this life-altering mental shock, in my opinion, can physically and organically mess with your brain (similar to grieving a death, or ptsd, etc.). Your brain chemicals can actually get out of whack for a time (serotonin, hormones, etc.). Your diet, activity, increased outside chemicals (legal and illegal), adrenalin, stress hormones, et al can mess you up for a while. No need to suffer through if you can find someone to talk to, and/or a bit of medical advice to put a bandaid on your brain while you heal.

 

And please, come here and RANT AWAY! We all understand! I find other people's rants very helpful to my own journey out. Getting it all out will help you and someone else, so it's all good.

 

Welcome, DAZE. It will get better. You are not alone, my friend. You have come to the right place. Peace to you.

 

 

 

P.S. FloridaGirl, this is the second of your threads that I have sort of derailed. Oops! Sorry! But I saw this comment from DAZE and felt the need to reach out. Anyhoo... carry on!

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It's awesome that you found something that you enjoy that makes you want to get up every morning. I haven't yet found that same joy for myself yet, but hopefully I will soon.

 

Me neither. But then again, I never found those things while I was a believer, anyway.

 

Yet, here I was believing that atheists lived lives devoid of meaning, even lecturing people about Carl Sagan's existential despair. Amazing how you can make shit up without even realizing it. I trusted that all I had to do was figure out how to get Jesus into the God-shaped hole he put in my heart. Projection is a bitch.

 

A lot of Catholics are tolerant of other faiths (and no faith).

 

That depends very much upon which Catholic. However, I think it's true of most Catholics in the economically developed world.

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That depends very much upon which Catholic. However, I think it's true of most Catholics in the economically developed world.

 

Well I don't have any statistics on how many Catholics believe that non-Christians are going to hell.  Truthfully I doubt such a study has ever been done (sidenote: I'm dismayed that so little attention is paid to the fact that a large number of Americans believe non-Christians will be eternally tormented).  However it's been my experience that a lot of Catholics are only cultural Catholics and do not take their doctrines seriously.  During the debate over Obamacare and contraception, I saw on CNN that upwards of 90% of Catholics do not obey church teachings on contraception themselves.  These people obviously don't believe in the church's authority over their lives, and probably disregard other teachings.  Add ot that the fact that the Catholic Church doesn't even teach that you'll necessarily go to hell for not believing in Jesus.  So there's much room for tolerance.  Not that I approve of Catholicism, mind you.

 

As you say, it probably depends on the Catholic.  I would just add that most Catholics seem to not be Rick Santorum.

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Guest r3alchild

FloridaGirl,

 

Its sad that you had to go through what you did

 

A life wrapped in a prison that no god could ever give

 

Not even with all the things you wanted to be

 

But somehow you broke free

 

And now everyone seems like someone else

 

But you don't care anymore

 

Because you know its better just being you than all the lies you ever knew

What did you think of my poem?
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FloridaGirl,

Its sad that you had to go through what you did

A life wrapped in a prison that no god could ever give

Not even with all the things you wanted to be

But somehow you broke free

And now everyone seems like someone else

But you don't care anymore

Because you know its better just being you than all the lies you ever knew

What did you think of my poem?
Loved it :) it describes what I am feeling really well.

 

Thanks for all the helpful responses everyone!

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That depends very much upon which Catholic. However, I think it's true of most Catholics in the economically developed world.

 

 

Well I don't have any statistics on how many Catholics believe that non-Christians are going to hell.  Truthfully I doubt such a study has ever been done (sidenote: I'm dismayed that so little attention is paid to the fact that a large number of Americans believe non-Christians will be eternally tormented).  However it's been my experience that a lot of Catholics are only cultural Catholics and do not take their doctrines seriously.  During the debate over Obamacare and contraception, I saw on CNN that upwards of 90% of Catholics do not obey church teachings on contraception themselves.  These people obviously don't believe in the church's authority over their lives, and probably disregard other teachings.  Add ot that the fact that the Catholic Church doesn't even teach that you'll necessarily go to hell for not believing in Jesus.  So there's much room for tolerance.  Not that I approve of Catholicism, mind you.

 

As you say, it probably depends on the Catholic.  I would just add that most Catholics seem to not be Rick Santorum.

My boyfriend (who is Catholic) and I had a discussion about salvation when I was still a Christian. I thought at that time that only Christians went to heaven. My boyfriend, however, believed that Jews and Muslims went there too because they all believed in the same God. I then asked him if atheists and agnostics went to heaven too. I wanted to know because my mom is agnostic and I wanted hope of seeing her in heaven too.

 

His response was no. He responded : "Jews and Muslims are okay but those atheists and agnostics, they don't even believe in a god".

 

I am so glad I don't have to deal with the fear of my loving, wonderful mom burning in hell anymore.

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