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What has been the hardest part of your deconversion from Christianity?


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The most difficult part of this whole de-conversion thingy is hiding it from my parents. I don't want them to be hurt and to despair over my soul, so I do not tell them. They know that my wife and I don't go to church anymore, but they don't ask why. We just don't talk about it. That's a relief, though. 

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For me the worst part was the depression I went through as I realized that the worldview I'd believed all my life, which I'd built my whole world on, which had consumed every ounce of my being, was ac

The first two years.  Anger.  At them and their lies.  At myself for taking so long to totally figure it out.  So many years lost.   The next three years.  Mental annoyance.  Every day, expo

That I'm on my own. No one is looking out for me, orchestrating coincidences, talking to me in my dreams or thoughts.    I also have carried and still carry a lot of shame, slowly working th

The hardest part for me has been having confidence in my own perspectives. I spent so much of my life conceding to other people's ideas and believing that my own take on matters was invalid. I spent more time consulting others for advice rather than trusting my own intuition. That is changing.

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On 2/2/2018 at 10:11 PM, goodgravy said:

The most difficult part of this whole de-conversion thingy is hiding it from my parents. I don't want them to be hurt and to despair over my soul, so I do not tell them. They know that my wife and I don't go to church anymore, but they don't ask why. We just don't talk about it. That's a relief, though. 

Uhuh. You're lucky if you're able to get away with hiding it. I can't anymore. I did everything else possible first. I moved, I cut contact with the church, but I still can't get away from it. If I want to have a relationship with them at all, it requires coming out.

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5 hours ago, Bookworm said:

The hardest part for me has been having confidence in my own perspectives. I spent so much of my life conceding to other people's ideas and believing that my own take on matters was invalid. I spent more time consulting others for advice rather than trusting my own intuition. That is changing.

This is great, the change bit. I hear you with the conceding part, it kinda infuriates me when I start thinking of how my brain was dumbed down. I even let other people's opinions of me affect my self confidence. And that was really difficult to try change, in the church I grew up in, even though I succeeded to a great extent. But the easiest way to gain my own sense of self was to just cut contact altogether with people who would never see me for who I really am.

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4 hours ago, TruthSeeker0 said:

This is great, the change bit. I hear you with the conceding part, it kinda infuriates me when I start thinking of how my brain was dumbed down. I even let other people's opinions of me affect my self confidence. And that was really difficult to try change, in the church I grew up in, even though I succeeded to a great extent. But the easiest way to gain my own sense of self was to just cut contact altogether with people who would never see me for who I really am.

 

That's what I've done. I have family members who cannot let go of their old view of me as a sweet little Christian girl. I have chosen to let them go.

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The hardest part of de-converting may be learning to keep your mouth shut about it. :yelrotflmao:      :woopsie:

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Hello all. I am new to this forum. I am a homeschool mom living in the southwest usa. Just wanted to say that the hardest part of deconverting is getting through the process at all. Some days I am done, others I feel like praying again and believing. I feel like I constantly flip flop on this. My older boys are  in college/working and I have one still schooling-they all pretty much believe the bible cannot be taken literally. My oldest says he does not believe, the other 2 believe in universalism. 

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2 hours ago, marymaryquitecontrary said:

Hello all. I am new to this forum. I am a homeschool mom living in the southwest usa. Just wanted to say that the hardest part of deconverting is getting through the process at all. Some days I am done, others I feel like praying again and believing. I feel like I constantly flip flop on this. My older boys are  in college/working and I have one still schooling-they all pretty much believe the bible cannot be taken literally. My oldest says he does not believe, the other 2 believe in universalism. 

 

Welcome MMQC. I'm glad you found this site. I believe you will find it helpful in your journey. 

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5 hours ago, marymaryquitecontrary said:

Hello all. I am new to this forum. I am a homeschool mom living in the southwest usa. Just wanted to say that the hardest part of deconverting is getting through the process at all. Some days I am done, others I feel like praying again and believing. I feel like I constantly flip flop on this. My older boys are  in college/working and I have one still schooling-they all pretty much believe the bible cannot be taken literally. My oldest says he does not believe, the other 2 believe in universalism. 

 

Welcome to the site! :)

 

I live in the southwest USA as well. This site is a great source of information and support, especially for those of us who have flip-flopped. Check out this post: https://www.ex-christian.net/topic/76730-the-importance-of-full-deconversion/

 

 

 

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On February 18, 2018 at 2:48 PM, TruthSeeker0 said:

Uhuh. You're lucky if you're able to get away with hiding it. I can't anymore. I did everything else possible first. I moved, I cut contact with the church, but I still can't get away from it. If I want to have a relationship with them at all, it requires coming out.

Call me lucky then. I'm actually going to spend most of this weekend with my parents. I realize that I am still able to have a good relationship with them, even though they don't know or understand half of what I'm going through, because God isn't needed and never was. They, obviously, think He is the linchpin to life. There is a large elephant in every room of the house, but everyone fears bringing up conversation about it lest the truth of the darkness is revealed. At least this is what I surmise. 

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Since I wasn't the type of Christian to ever think I might wind up in Hell, I haven't had a single nagging doubt since I realized it was all bullshit.

 

The hardest part has been dealing with family, which has resulted in my staying in the closet. I was outed once, and had a long conversation with my minister son which ended with me saying "yes" when he said "just tell me that you still believe in Jesus." It was a flat out lie, but I could see it wasn't going to work for me to be "out."

 

So I'm in the closet but would appear to others to be a very half-hearted Christian. In Churches of Christ people expect that most everyone will be there Sunday morning, Sunday night, and Wednesday night, and they don't understand the people who don't show up all of the time. But about 1/3 of the congregation is only there on Sunday morning, and nobody says anything to their faces. So even if they're talking about me (and I'm not vain enough to think that anyone thinks about me except when they're looking right at me), I don't really care. Just don't make me uncomfortable, please! And so far, that really hasn't happened except for once when an elder asked me if I planned to start leading singing again. I just said I was happy to be retired, and he said "no problem, he just thought he'd ask."

 

If I really just quit I would have a hard time with one son and possibly with my sister-in-law and a niece. And I think my wife would start making more of an effort to be there, whereas now she doesn't go when she's tired!

 

Anyway, while it was stressful for a brief time, it hasn't been all that hard for the most part. Seriously annoying, but not too stressful! Some might say I'm not being true to myself, but I'm a firm believer in making life as easy as possible.

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On 2/23/2018 at 3:24 PM, Lerk said:

The hardest part has been dealing with family, which has resulted in my staying in the closet. I was outed once, and had a long conversation with my minister son which ended with me saying "yes" when he said "just tell me that you still believe in Jesus." It was a flat out lie, but I could see it wasn't going to work for me to be "out."

 

So I'm in the closet but would appear to others to be a very half-hearted Christian. In Churches of Christ people expect that most everyone will be there Sunday morning, Sunday night, and Wednesday night, and they don't understand the people who don't show up all of the time.

This is why I moved away, for enough away, that any reasonable person isn't going to expect me in the church bench every Sunday. Of course some of them still do, regardless of distance, but they must be getting the message as I've never returned since moving. I understand why you remain the "half-hearted" believer, and go to church, just to avoid all the complications that would cause with family etc. I just couldn't take it anymore, the mental stress and sheer annoyance of listening to the lies started to drive me crazy. As did the social aspects of fundamentalism, and the social measures of control. I felt like I was in a prison. I had to be true to myself, or go crazy.

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Hardest part... do i have to choose just one?

 

The anxiety I live with, caused by being raised to fear. The inability to trust insitutions or commit to something bigger than myself. Not knowing who I am or what I want anymore. Every month realising a new layer of how fucked up my childhood was as a result of religion and my parents combined. Fearing death including a newfound fear of flying. Realising how controlled and unhappy my family is because of this cancerous religion. Going from being the golden girl of the family to being the black sheep. Reconnecting with an old Christian friend and it going badly in the same ways over and over again.

 

It's getting easier but the first few items on the list still haunt me big-time.

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12 minutes ago, austere said:

Hardest part... do i have to choose just one?

 

The anxiety I live with, caused by being raised to fear. The inability to trust insitutions or commit to something bigger than myself. Not knowing who I am or what I want anymore. Every month realising a new layer of how fucked up my childhood was as a result of religion and my parents combined. Fearing death including a newfound fear of flying. Realising how controlled and unhappy my family is because of this cancerous religion. Going from being the golden girl of the family to being the black sheep. Reconnecting with an old Christian friend and it going badly in the same ways over and over again.

 

It's getting easier but the first few items on the list still haunt me big-time.

I think the first one is a big one because for me at least the fear and the guilt I felt about not being a good enough xtian resulted in a lot of anxiety. And habits and thought patterns can be hard to break, you have to retrain your mind. But it can be done. CBT therapy is one option that can help. 

I actually have less fear of death. I don't need to worry about being punished, and a lot of it was that. 

Also I've decided it's easier to keep my distance from former xtian friends. I'm only going to be willing to continue if they make it clear that they accept me and my life without judgement.

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41 minutes ago, TruthSeeker0 said:

I think the first one is a big one because for me at least the fear and the guilt I felt about not being a good enough xtian resulted in a lot of anxiety. And habits and thought patterns can be hard to break, you have to retrain your mind. But it can be done. CBT therapy is one option that can help. 

I actually have less fear of death. I don't need to worry about being punished, and a lot of it was that. 

Also I've decided it's easier to keep my distance from former xtian friends. I'm only going to be willing to continue if they make it clear that they accept me and my life without judgement.

CBT is enormously helpful, not foolproof but still really really good. After just one session of learning how to do it I got enormous benefits and i highly recommend it to anyone else dealing with anxiety My psych and I are actually looking into whether I have PTSD from all of this, which is categorised as an anxiety disorder too. Yay.

 

I envy you your lessened fear, for me realising i was going to die and that was likely that meant that instead of having an eternity to live, I just get another 75 years or thereabouts.

 

And yeah, after enough bad conversations I had to adopt this approach with friends too. Still sucks when you have to have that conversation all over again though.

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Because every cell in my body wants it to be true. I can never get over the idea. It was so beautiful,the thought I Would see loved ones, be OK, have my disability removed and live a full life! To have all the trauma gone....................

 

Yes, I am weak and I needed it. 

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I don't think that's weakness, Rachel. Anyone would want that.

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The loss of hope. The realization that now I have to live with this disability and no one will help me. Having put all my faith in a Lie, I now have nothing and am still disabled. My fmaily cannot help me. They wasted over $200,000 on tithing over the years and I am left in a trash heap and no money from anywhere. Disbled and poor in america= death. That is hard enough but to look back and see how I was used, fooled, trusting, how of all people, I was this little tiny disabled waif trusting with my whole heart. I could turn Christ himself away from Christ now with the testimony of my life and his lack of any help. I have the most powerful anti testimoney of anyone I knoew because i needed him, I trusted him, I did what he told me (like marry a man who had actually violated my mom-----that is how sick we are) and all that........ALL FOR GOD. And I got shit. It would have been ok to have gotten nothng, but I am such severe PTSD on top of it that there is no thought I ever have that is asscoiated with any peace whatsoever AND AND AND I STILL AM DISABLED with a disablity whcih takes loterally all my time to manage. I have to wake up at 4am to start to manage it, and it 's rough all day. ANd no help. No hope. No peave. Praise his holy fucking name. 

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On March 21, 2018 at 9:16 AM, RachelSkates said:

 Praise his holy fucking name. 

 

Bet you'd never think of saying this when you were a Jesusy person. I wouldn't have either.

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On 11/23/2017 at 1:30 PM, Faeryn said:

Just curious about what the most difficult part of deconversion is for everyone, and what you've been doing to recover from that?

 

The hardest part for me has been trying to erase Christian ideas of shame and guilt - the sense that I'm constantly doing something bad, even though I'm not. Intermingled with this is shame about my sexuality. 

 

Hi there. I am with you on all of this. I am still struggling even though I haven't set foot in a church for quite a while now. I even found myself contacting someone I used to know at church because I feel so lonely. He completely blanked me last week when I have done nothing wrong to him other than stopped believing. I can't believe I did that. I've opened it all up again. I am a naturally shy person and so now there is no church in my life, I am severely limited on the social front. The church is, after all, a ready-made family, however, it's a family on the condition you toe the line totally.

 

I know I have no underlying belief in relation to Christianity, however, I still feel terror (no other word for it) and I'm constantly worried God will punish me or strike me down dead. I worry he will punish me by getting to family members and hurting me that way. I had another complete breakdown a few weeks ago and I was completely lost it. I had to reach out for professional help to get me through it. Religion has completely destroyed my life. I can't seem to get through the heavy doses of fear, guilt, and shame I feel also about my sexuality. I'm heterosexual so you wouldn't think there would be a problem but I find myself repenting when I see a sexy woman and start thinking lustful thoughts.

 

Religion and in my case Christianity has done a number on me and try as I might to apply logic to the situation I fear I will never get through this. My brain was got to at a very young and tender age and all that evil was planted in there and I can't shake it out. I just want all of his to end but it doesn't. It just sits there in the back of my mind until something triggers it and off I go again. I sometimes think about just going back to church and sitting there, saying the words by rote, smiling with everyone else but that's not going to help because even when I was involved within religion I was constantly worrying whether I was doing enough. It's never enough though. Fear becomes second nature.

 

 

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How long have you been "out", @TooManyDoubts?

It takes time to rewire the brain, you know.

 

Having thoughts and experiencing physiological responses when viewing some of nature's beautiful creations? Normal behaviour.

Just don't lear.That's rude.  ;)

 

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Just knowing now how spiked I was in a manic spree, being bi-polar. Nothing much in my life was more embarrassing than that. A couple of thing, but nothing like that.

 

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The worst part was the realization that I had tried to solve my trust/abandonment issues with my parents, stemming from my adoption, by doing two things:

 

1)Trying to be a good, fake Christian boy in order to be the person my adopted parents wanted me to be

 

and

 

2) Making my imaginary sky-daddy into the accepting parent I never had.

 

The problem was that I was never able to commit to either false relationship, and so I would eventually push buttons at home or in church, all in an attempt to see if either human daddy or Sky Daddy would still run to my rescue.

 

The sad thing is that I sabotaged some very good opportunities as a working musician in order to go be a sham of a "minister". I had been living life very much on my own terms for some years before I allowed these bullshit ideas and hangups to derail my progress.

 

I lost nearly 20 years of my life to my commitment to that shitty religion, and I have a lot of obstacles to deal with in working my way back to what I already knew to be true.

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