DarkBishop

2 years later

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Well guys it's been almost exactly 2 years since my "rebirth" into a more logical frame of mind. I wish I could say it's been a great two years but it has not been without it's trials. Me and LadyBishop have been on the verge of splitting a few times. We have pulled through though. I'm hoping as time passes and she continues to see that I still love her even though "God" isn't in my life that the tensions will ease. I feel that I continue to be the good father and husband that I was before so hopefully she will also come to the same conclusion. She is the main reason I don't frequent this site much anymore. I'm going to start trying to post more frequently however from work. I need the companionship I get from this site. Just knowing that there are others that have been through the same........ "trauma" that I've been through.

      Maybe some wonder why I used the word "trauma"? Well that's because it is a traumatic experience to fervently believe in any faith, let that faith control your life for (X) amount of years. Only to find out that what you believed and what you followed was all a lie. It isn't an easy process for everyone to de-convert. Some (like me) it is a slow process that finally comes to a point where everything clicks together and you see the truth. Others may be hit with the truth suddenly. While still others may have a slow or even a sudden loss of belief and be ok. I don't think that is true for the most part though. When one's life (like many of ours) revolves around a common belief with friends, family, and Co-workers, then you are taken out of that social loop, It is like you are suddenly all alone in the world. Myself and others have described it identically as going through the stages of grief. It's like losing a part of you that you feel can never be replaced. At the same time you are dealing with all of that on the inside, NO ONE seems to be there for you on the outside. Suddenly you are a "Bad guy" or "gal". In there minds you must have committed some horrible sin to have come to this point. Or of course my favorite excuse of all that severely PISSES ME OFF. "You must have never been saved (or) believed in the first place". then they see you as a fraud, a deceptive liar that acted the part just to fool their innocent "God fearing" souls. Your suddenly the "Big Bad Wolf" to everyone on the outside.  Simultaneously you feel like a scared, hurt, and innocent child on the inside.

     I hope this post isn't to much of a downer for you guys. I guess I'm in one of my moods today. I get frustrated at times because I do LOVE my wife and I DO NOT need some "God" in my life to make me keep loving her. It gets frustrating ya know? I'm powerless to make her feel better about this. If it was financial issues I could work overtime more. Medical issues I could try to get the treatment she needs. I can even usually smooth out problems between her and the kids. But this is a complete loss of the faith that we shared together and that isn't something I can bring back. It's not like I can walk over to the wall and flip a switch to turn it back on, Nor would I. My whole Christian life I would pray that God guide me and show me the truth. I've always wanted to know the truth. Now I know it and I would not trade the truth for the lies they tell every Sunday for anything. sure I can go and spend time with her and the kids on Sundays. And sometimes I do. But then it gets to the point that I feel "obligated" to go and I don't like that. When I go it is only to spend time with my family and enjoy the social aspect of the gathering. I admittedly like watching them to. To me it is now like an outside observer who goes to Australia to observe the beliefs and life of the aboriginal tribes.

     I've moved onto something greater. A better understanding of the universe and the truth of the mysteries that are contained there in. We no longer have to make up stories, legends, and myths as to why we are here. We can study the stars, the planet, and solar system and know. Isn't it nice to know that the earth isn't flat? I think so.

 

Dark Bishop

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I might compare the emotional trauma of your deconversion to my divorce. Two very different things, for sure, but a similar affect on one's mind. You're glad you deconverted. I'm glad I got divorced. Take care of yourself. :)

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Hey @DarkBishop it’s good to hear from you again!  I’ve been wondering and hoping you were OK.  I had a feeling it was family-related.  I really do hope you can spend more time here.  I know it’s important to me too as another member of the Unequally Yoked club.  This fellowship with fellow-travelers is important to me and evidently to you too.  I think if you can express your unbelief here with your fellow agnostics/atheists it may actually help your relationship, as opposed to feeling isolated in a sea of believers.  A happier DarkBishop should make for a happier LadyBishop...

 

All the best, my friend...

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13 hours ago, DarkBishop said:

I've always wanted to know the truth. Now I know it and I would not trade the truth for the lies they tell every Sunday for anything.

Thanks for sharing, @DarkBishop! Remember that character in The Matrix who made a deal to betray everyone in the ship so he can get plugged back in the matrix and live the lie again? Screw that! Once you know the truth you can't very well go back into willful self delusion :) It wouldn't be the same anyways.

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6 hours ago, DestinyTurtle said:

Thanks for sharing, @DarkBishop! Remember that character in The Matrix who made a deal to betray everyone in the ship so he can get plugged back in the matrix and live the lie again? Screw that! Once you know the truth you can't very well go back into willful self delusion :) It wouldn't be the same anyways.

So very true Destinyturtle. 

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21 hours ago, DarkBishop said:

Well guys it's been almost exactly 2 years since my "rebirth" into a more logical frame of mind. I wish I could say it's been a great two years but it has not been without it's trials. Me and LadyBishop have been on the verge of splitting a few times. We have pulled through though. I'm hoping as time passes and she continues to see that I still love her even though "God" isn't in my life that the tensions will ease. I feel that I continue to be the good father and husband that I was before so hopefully she will also come to the same conclusion. She is the main reason I don't frequent this site much anymore. I'm going to start trying to post more frequently however from work. I need the companionship I get from this site. Just knowing that there are others that have been through the same........ "trauma" that I've been through.

      Maybe some wonder why I used the word "trauma"? Well that's because it is a traumatic experience to fervently believe in any faith, let that faith control your life for (X) amount of years. Only to find out that what you believed and what you followed was all a lie. It isn't an easy process for everyone to de-convert. Some (like me) it is a slow process that finally comes to a point where everything clicks together and you see the truth. Others may be hit with the truth suddenly. While still others may have a slow or even a sudden loss of belief and be ok. I don't think that is true for the most part though. When one's life (like many of ours) revolves around a common belief with friends, family, and Co-workers, then you are taken out of that social loop, It is like you are suddenly all alone in the world. Myself and others have described it identically as going through the stages of grief. It's like losing a part of you that you feel can never be replaced. At the same time you are dealing with all of that on the inside, NO ONE seems to be there for you on the outside. Suddenly you are a "Bad guy" or "gal". In there minds you must have committed some horrible sin to have come to this point. Or of course my favorite excuse of all that severely PISSES ME OFF. "You must have never been saved (or) believed in the first place". then they see you as a fraud, a deceptive liar that acted the part just to fool their innocent "God fearing" souls. Your suddenly the "Big Bad Wolf" to everyone on the outside.  Simultaneously you feel like a scared, hurt, and innocent child on the inside.

     I hope this post isn't to much of a downer for you guys. I guess I'm in one of my moods today. I get frustrated at times because I do LOVE my wife and I DO NOT need some "God" in my life to make me keep loving her. It gets frustrating ya know? I'm powerless to make her feel better about this. If it was financial issues I could work overtime more. Medical issues I could try to get the treatment she needs. I can even usually smooth out problems between her and the kids. But this is a complete loss of the faith that we shared together and that isn't something I can bring back. It's not like I can walk over to the wall and flip a switch to turn it back on, Nor would I. My whole Christian life I would pray that God guide me and show me the truth. I've always wanted to know the truth. Now I know it and I would not trade the truth for the lies they tell every Sunday for anything. sure I can go and spend time with her and the kids on Sundays. And sometimes I do. But then it gets to the point that I feel "obligated" to go and I don't like that. When I go it is only to spend time with my family and enjoy the social aspect of the gathering. I admittedly like watching them to. To me it is now like an outside observer who goes to Australia to observe the beliefs and life of the aboriginal tribes.

     I've moved onto something greater. A better understanding of the universe and the truth of the mysteries that are contained there in. We no longer have to make up stories, legends, and myths as to why we are here. We can study the stars, the planet, and solar system and know. Isn't it nice to know that the earth isn't flat? I think so.

 

Dark Bishop

Hi DB, sorry to hear it hasn't been very easy for you or your wife. Would you consider going to counseling together? (a secular one that is) I think it would really help if she became more aware of the inner trauma/feelings you are having (it IS trauma to leave religion, no need to call it less), and the consequences for you emotionally about leaving your beliefs behind, if she isn't already. As well, I'm just trying to think of how I would have taken this from the perspective of a believer with a spouse leaving. She may be at the mercy of all these stupid stereotypes about atheists, ie they are immoral people, they have no values etc. Perhaps she feels she has less security in your marriage as a result? It's not completely irrational that it may have affected her level of trust in you. Which is why time and patience is important for her, understanding that you are still the same person, and still standing by her. Religion can be majorly divisive due to these stereotypes and fears about non believers, and of course then there's the issue of reconciling changed lifestyles, as well. It's a process, grief is all part of it, and she is probably struggling with that too because your life as it was has ceased to be.

If it was me, what I would try is a letter exchange. I've read of at least one couple that did that, wrote each other letters through the whole process because it was too raw to discuss verbally. They both ultimately ended up on the atheist side, but what this can really do is increase understanding of what the other person is going through, and give people time and space to process it. 

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2 hours ago, TruthSeeker0 said:

Hi DB, sorry to hear it hasn't been very easy for you or your wife. Would you consider going to counseling together? (a secular one that is) I think it would really help if she became more aware of the inner trauma/feelings you are having (it IS trauma to leave religion, no need to call it less), and the consequences for you emotionally about leaving your beliefs behind, if she isn't already. As well, I'm just trying to think of how I would have taken this from the perspective of a believer with a spouse leaving. She may be at the mercy of all these stupid stereotypes about atheists, ie they are immoral people, they have no values etc. Perhaps she feels she has less security in your marriage as a result? It's not completely irrational that it may have affected her level of trust in you. Which is why time and patience is important for her, understanding that you are still the same person, and still standing by her. Religion can be majorly divisive due to these stereotypes and fears about non believers, and of course then there's the issue of reconciling changed lifestyles, as well. It's a process, grief is all part of it, and she is probably struggling with that too because your life as it was has ceased to be.

If it was me, what I would try is a letter exchange. I've read of at least one couple that did that, wrote each other letters through the whole process because it was too raw to discuss verbally. They both ultimately ended up on the atheist side, but what this can really do is increase understanding of what the other person is going through, and give people time and space to process it. 

As the old saying goes around here; "you hit the nail on the head". We have mentioned possibly getting counseling. I did mention it needing to be a secular counter and she automatically felt like she was going to be ganged up on. Likewise I pretty well know that a religious one would be biased toward her. I think a secular counselor would be more objective tho. So far it has only been mentioned once. What you said about her possible thoughts about my de-conversion is exactly what I'm thinking as well. And I do understand that. If it were me in her shoes I'm sure that I would be acting much the same way and thinking the same things. And like you said there is such a stereo type when it comes to non believers in the Christian world. Most of us were probably the same way when we were believers. I know I was. I couldn't understand how someone could leave the church and "go back out in sin". So I really get it. Her fear, thoughts, anxiety etc. I wish I could take all that away from her but like I said before. I'm powerless to. It's something that I cant change or make better.

       I like your Idea about the letters as well. Maybe i'll try to bring that up next time we have a deep discussion about the issue. Thank you Truth seeker so much for your advice.

 

DB

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13 hours ago, ThereAndBackAgain said:

Hey @DarkBishop it’s good to hear from you again!  I’ve been wondering and hoping you were OK.  I had a feeling it was family-related. 

Thank youTABA. It’s good to hear from you as well. I was hoping everyone would understand. I really do love this little community here on Ex-C. Y’all have been so good and helpful during the whole process. Hopefully I can be more of a voice here for a little while. Just keep me in your thoughts if I have to disappear again cuz it probably means there is a good reason for it: 

 

DB

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9 hours ago, DarkBishop said:

As the old saying goes around here; "you hit the nail on the head". We have mentioned possibly getting counseling. I did mention it needing to be a secular counter and she automatically felt like she was going to be ganged up on. Likewise I pretty well know that a religious one would be biased toward her. I think a secular counselor would be more objective tho. So far it has only been mentioned once. What you said about her possible thoughts about my de-conversion is exactly what I'm thinking as well. And I do understand that. If it were me in her shoes I'm sure that I would be acting much the same way and thinking the same things. And like you said there is such a stereo type when it comes to non believers in the Christian world. Most of us were probably the same way when we were believers. I know I was. I couldn't understand how someone could leave the church and "go back out in sin". So I really get it. Her fear, thoughts, anxiety etc. I wish I could take all that away from her but like I said before. I'm powerless to. It's something that I cant change or make better.

       I like your Idea about the letters as well. Maybe i'll try to bring that up next time we have a deep discussion about the issue. Thank you Truth seeker so much for your advice.

 

DB

You aren't completely powerless. Discussions with her are very important. When you mentioned not being able to interact with us, I realized she likely views this community as a threat to her security. So what I think is important is that she hear about how difficult it is for you emotionally having lost your previous supports, what your feelings are about having to go it alone, and why this community is important for that. At the same time make clear to her that you understand her fears and would have the same if you were in her shoes. 

I agree with the secular therapist, a Christian one wouldn't be of any help because your worldview would only clash with and confront that of the therapists as well. I hope your wife can understand this. This is why I think letter writing could help, at least in starting the process. Do you need to discuss it? Perhaps start by writing one to her and telling her if she wants she is free to reply?

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Hey @DarkBishop Good to hear from you. Thanks for sharing. I feel for you with your relationship struggles and hope everything turns out well. It's hard enough being single and deconverting, let alone having a family and you are the only deconvert.

 

I agree, it is nice knowing the earth isn't flat, and that our destiny isn't pre determined by a non communicative being someplace.

 

All the best bud.

 

LF

 

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I’ll be thinking of you. I hope the letter writing can help. 

 

It has been two years for me as well- I remember your matrix post was one of the first I read on here. 

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4 hours ago, Riversong said:

I’ll be thinking of you. I hope the letter writing can help. 

 

It has been two years for me as well- I remember your matrix post was one of the first I read on here. 

River song, 

    Thank you. I am so glad that post has been such an inspiration to other exchristians. 2 years later and it is still speaking to people going through this change. I really didn't think it would relate to people that much when I wrote it, but I'm glad it did. We all have our different paths to take in this journey.  While my biggest hurtle is that of a believing spouse. Yours may be something different. Either way we are better off for knowing the truth, no matter what hardship that truth brings in our lives. I don't think anyone on this site will say de-converting is easy. 

 

DB

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2 minutes ago, DarkBishop said:

River song, 

    Thank you. I am so glad that post has been such an inspiration to other exchristians. 2 years later and it is still speaking to people going through this change. I really didn't think it would relate to people that much when I wrote it, but I'm glad it did. We all have our different paths to take in this journey.  While my biggest hurtle is that of a believing spouse. Yours may be something different. Either way we are better off for knowing the truth; No matter what hardship that truth brings in our lives. No one on this sight will say de-converting is easy. 

 

DB

Hell yes we are better off. It's been two years for me as well, this February. And it's a long process but it's been worth it, once I got over the shitstorm with family after "coming out." I recently told someone there is no way you could drag me back to church. Well you could, but it would only be if I had a fair chance to stand in front of them all and get a fair hearing about what I think about all the brainwashing.

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6 minutes ago, TruthSeeker0 said:

Hell yes we are better off. It's been two years for me as well, this February. And it's a long process but it's been worth it, once I got over the shitstorm with family after "coming out." I recently told someone there is no way you could drag me back to church. Well you could, but it would only be if I had a fair chance to stand in front of them all and get a fair hearing about what I think about all the brainwashing.

Well happy deconversary truth seeker. Glad to hear your still holding strong 😁!

 

DB

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