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Kat34

Hello from the UK 🇬🇧

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Hi all, I joined this site a few months ago but had “browsed” it a few times a couple of months before that, with the purpose of confirming I was right in having concluded a few years earlier that Christianity was false. Worries that I could be wrong had started to creep in and then hit me with full force (mainly featuring a fear of hell) 3 months ago.

 

I’ve posted on here a few times and have been lucky enough to have had some great support from members. I think I’m right that the majority of members live in the US and wondered if there’s anyone else England-based here?

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4 hours ago, Kat34 said:

Hi all, I joined this site a few months ago but had “browsed” it a few times a couple of months before that, with the purpose of confirming I was right in having concluded a few years earlier that Christianity was false.

 

I will go out on a limb and say once again, with the same conviction, that christianity is false. You chose wisely!!!

 

 

 

4 hours ago, Kat34 said:

Worries that I could be wrong had started to creep in and then hit me with full force (mainly featuring a fear of hell) 3 months ago.

 

I remember talking to you about these fears and suggesting videos about the evolution of hell and satan and how it's man made, and not anything that you need to fear after all. 

 

4 hours ago, Kat34 said:

I’ve posted on here a few times and have been lucky enough to have had some great support from members. I think I’m right that the majority of members live in the US and wondered if there’s anyone else England-based here?

 

Glad to have you, Kat. 

 

So let me ask, are you doing better in terms of worrying or fearing that christianity may be right after all? How's that going now after you took in the information? 

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Lots of UK folk here. We have folks from NZ, Australia, Germany, Canada, and the UK here, and other countries too, so pull up a chair and join the party. Christianity is a worldwide problem. Glad you dropped back in for a visit.

 

I am bilingual myself. I both speak and write American Deep South and Midwestern. B) 

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Welcome, Kat34. This is a good place to be with lots of positive support...I'm not from England, ...I'm just across the pond from you, in Newfoundland (Canada's easternmost province). :)

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5 hours ago, Kat34 said:

Worries that I could be wrong had started to creep in and then hit me with full force (mainly featuring a fear of hell) 3 months ago.

Welcome, @Kat34! Those flashbacks are completely normal. They can haunt you for some years, but I assure you it gets better. It's just old traumatic programming resurfacing before they bubble into the oblivion! 

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5 hours ago, Kat34 said:

Hi all, I joined this site a few months ago but had “browsed” it a few times a couple of months before that, with the purpose of confirming I was right in having concluded a few years earlier that Christianity was false. Worries that I could be wrong had started to creep in and then hit me with full force (mainly featuring a fear of hell) 3 months ago.

 

I’ve posted on here a few times and have been lucky enough to have had some great support from members. I think I’m right that the majority of members live in the US and wondered if there’s anyone else England-based here?

 

Hi Kat, and welcome to our community!  I’m originally from Ireland (Cork) myself, but I’ve lived in the States for quite a few years.

 

I hope your worries have eased lately.  Being active here, whether actively participating or just reading the wealth of good stuff, should help that quite a bit.

 

Cheers for now...

TABA

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I'm not from England but that fear of hell you describe sounds like the result of the very same poison diet christianity is feeding us here in the US. It will take time because emotion based decisions typically change much more slowly than reason based decisions. Try to take some comfort in knowing that feelings can not create reality. Christianity wants your emotional commitment to the "extraordinary" good things it has to offer before you try to logically decide if it is based in reality. If it were approached the other way around very few would look at the facts and evedence and end up thinking christianity is in any way remotely what it claims to be. You really have already accomplished the hard part by looking at the evidence objectively and making the only reasonable decision you could. Hell is a made up idea christianity picked up on exactly for the purpose of scaring people away from thoughts of leaving. Be proud of yourself for caring enough about yourself to look into the truth of the christian claims and standing up to the mind game bulling. Whenever that fear raises it's ugly head just say to yourself ok Kat34 lets just calm down and go over any question we have and decide one more time whether or not hell has any crediblity. What do we have to suggest it is a real place and what do we have that suggest it is a man made invention. Real beliefs are not for sale. Look within yourself to see what you believe and if you've gone through some very significant effort (as you aparently have) to decide what you believe then trust yourself and continue to resist the pressure to copy the "beliefs" of people who have never done the work of trying to figure out if their beliefs are correct. Welcome and congratulations Kat34.

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Greetings from the Vaterland Kat, and sorry for all the mess... I did not vote for the bankster whore, really, believe me please! ;)

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The "flashbacks" will gradually fade away.  There will come a time that you will see the superstitions so clearly, that you will ask yourself why you didn't see through them earlier.

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7 hours ago, Joshpantera said:

So let me ask, are you doing better in terms of worrying or fearing that christianity may be right after all? How's that going now after you took in the information? 

 

Hi again @Joshpantera! And thanks again for all your input. I think I’m definitely going in the right direction but am very up and down with it (often within one day!). I continue to read loads - which sometimes is a real help and sometimes makes things worse and try to reject what I know would be the Christian interpretation of the things you mention (hell and Satan) i.e. progressive revelation!!

 

One thing I’m trying to do is notice how external factors can heighten/ trigger fears, as these clearly have no bearing on the truth of the issues but can have a big impact on how I *feel* about the likelihood of them being true. So when it gets dark, that has a negative impact. When my children are in bed, sometimes my fears are alleviated, because they are not in front of me as a constant reminder of how awful it would be for them to end up in hell. When I’m even more exhausted than normal, or when I’m unwell, that has a negative impact. Seeing my mum triggers my fears and anxiety. And I can think back to when I was 15 and definitely did believe in hell and was going through an extremely fearful period and all these same external factors (minus the children) also exacerbated things. In the summer time, things abated a bit.  

 

So my next steps are 1) to try again to get a prescription for an anti-anxiety medication - if this can dull the intensity of the fear then that might help me keep rational, plus confirm the psychological/ brain-based nature of it and 2) to work with a counsellor on understanding how these fears relate to my own background and psychological makeup rather than to an objective reality.

 

Sound like a good plan?

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6 hours ago, DestinyTurtle said:

Welcome, @Kat34! Those flashbacks are completely normal. They can haunt you for some years, but I assure you it gets better. It's just old traumatic programming resurfacing before they bubble into the oblivion! 

 

Thank you DT, and for all your support! Will always appreciate it!

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Thanks all for your hellos, welcomes and messages of support!

 

I have to say I feel like a bit of a fraud when I think about my own past experience as a Christian compared with most of yours. I became one as a child because it’s what I was taught but I was constantly drifting away and never “spiritually mature” or developing sound biblical knowledge. I think as I got older both my increasing objections to hell and original sin and the fact that this country is so secular were factors that stopped me really throwing myself in whole heartedly, although there were certainly periods when I tried to do this. I could never talk about it at school for example though, because no one else was religious and I would’ve been subject to ridicule! So I’d worry about the son of man then being ashamed of me (if I’ve accurately remembered that reference). 

 

My church was very calm and non challenging but my mum would often read and talk about end times stuff which really freaked me out from my teenage years, though this wasn’t at all her intention. I didn’t find a huge amount of peace in Christianity, but found a lot of fear. This probably speaks a lot to my personal psychology. I used to beg God to help me with my fears of heaven, hell, the second coming and judgement but felt no comfort.

 

Through my early 20s I asked God to help me to want him. I prayed “Lord I believe; help thou my unbelief” and asked him to help me with my fears. I tried really hard to make original sin make sense or seem fair at all. I read about alternative views of the atonement and about universalism and finally felt some hope, but still remained terrified of the second coming. Then with great relief I came to think none of this was probably true after all, following several Facebook conversations with an old friend who had lost his faith. This was my position until a few months ago when the fears came flooding back and then some! 

 

I recently read something which really hit home, which was about the importance of conversion and deconversion being your own. And neither of mine were. Both times I relied on other people’s thinking and what other people told me. But what I was told and what was constantly reinforced as a child clearly had far more impact than conversations on social media in my late 20s. So my hope is that if this time I do the thinking for myself (but with support from this community, for example) then I will achieve a deconversion that is truly my own and I won’t have such a serious relapse in the future. I’ve been reading constantly for 3 months (I have to say that I mostly avoid the New Atheists and mythicists, though) and am going to work with a professional on the psychological side of things. I feel very guilty and sad about all the time this has taken away from my children but this is when it’s happened (and actually triggered by fear for them - if it was just me I think I’d be done by now) and I have to deal with it now. 

 

It’s possible that there is indeed some kind of personality-disordered god that created many of us with the sole purpose of eternally tormenting us but the only reason I have to think so is that that’s some people’s reading of an ancient book. This same god has allowed us to gain insight into the evolutionary, psychological and neurobiological drivers for human behaviour, all of which seem to dilute the argument for original sin. Or maybe our brains became corrupted as a result of that original sin and the Fall - but this same god has allowed us to discover that actually death and suffering existed in the world long before Homo sapiens did. This paragraph suggests I think more rationally than I usually do, but I’m trying. I still find it very hard to reconcile the fact that there are extremely intelligent people out there who believe the Christian story, but I’m hoping those kinds of thoughts will resolve themselves over time. 

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18 hours ago, Kat34 said:

One thing I’m trying to do is notice how external factors can heighten/ trigger fears, as these clearly have no bearing on the truth of the issues but can have a big impact on how I *feel* about the likelihood of them being true. So when it gets dark, that has a negative impact. When my children are in bed, sometimes my fears are alleviated, because they are not in front of me as a constant reminder of how awful it would be for them to end up in hell.

 

Thanks for letting me know how it's going. I was wondering. I get the part about the kids. I myself don't really fret around about the kids and their eternal souls because I'm quite a ways past worrying about those kinds of things. Mainly because I just don't believe them at all. But I understand worrying about making the wrong choices for other people involved, especially children. For whatever it's worth, if hell doesn't exist in the first place then it's not even possible that either you or the kids will end up there. I'm just saying. 

 

I actually speak like I'm speaking to you now with the kids. I have two older step daughters and I'm soon to inherit two older steps sons. They're all smart kids. They want to be spoken to in terms of the truth about things. So I level with them straight. But they're all late teens and early 20's. Quite different than having little ones. 

 

18 hours ago, Kat34 said:

So my next steps are 1) to try again to get a prescription for an anti-anxiety medication - if this can dull the intensity of the fear then that might help me keep rational, plus confirm the psychological/ brain-based nature of it and 2) to work with a counsellor on understanding how these fears relate to my own background and psychological makeup rather than to an objective reality.

 

Sound like a good plan?

 

Yes, I think it sounds like a good plan. 

 

We always encourage people to seek professional counseling and go with the advised medication where emotional and psychological factors are at play. Sometimes that can sound offensive, but it's not meant to be. We just deal in terms of light encouragement of ex christians in discussion level format. But the community factor may be a big help. Just hearing other peoples stories and finding similarities and just basically knowing that you're not alone in this. 

 

Per your last post, I think you've nailed it on the head. A lot of the people who I grew up with in the SDA church and church school system who never really paid attention or knew that much about the bible, and rebelled in youth, wound up going right back into it after the rebellion was over. Several of them now preachers. But at no point did these guys get to a place where they honestly researched the information for themselves. Not about the SDA cult, nor the bible and christianity in general. Meanwhile, those of us out of my community who did go through truth seeking periods of reading everything we could, thinking about everything deeply going into our 20's and 30's and talking to each other about it, never got sucked back in to the cult as we aged. Instead we became immune to it. 

 

 

 

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