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Blue

Too Many Realizations

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This is my story and it is going to be quite long, but it has taken awhile for me to get to this point. Putting my story out for other people to read scares me in a way because it makes what I have been disconnecting myself from for so long more real. But I am hoping that by posting my story here I might receive support, encouragement, or suggestions of ways to try to mentally help myself.

My father is a Chaplain in the military, basically a pastor masquerading in a military uniform. My mother's only purpose in life is to marry a Christian man so she may let him rule over her life and bear his children. My older sister (and only sibling) is on this site, too. Her testimony is titled 'Born to Be Controlled'.

I have never really fit the mold of perfect Christian, much less a preacher's kid. I have never liked any of the beliefs or practices that came with Christianity, specifically my parents are Baptist. None of it has ever felt right or real, but I 'believed' because I was told it was the only truth and that if I didn't I would go to hell. Somehow, 'sinful' things would come to my knowledge before they could tell me what Christians believe about it and I would make up my own opinion. I always had to be corrected to the Christian view. So many times that has happened, that I remember just starting to always ask in conversations 'what do we as Christians believe about that?'. 

I am headed into my third year of high school, started homeschooling in seventh grade. Ever since sixth grade I have been struggling with anxiety, depression, and being suicidal. I kept all of this a secret from my family until just before summer break, my parents have always believed (and still do) that mental illnesses are not a thing. What I have been taught is that if they are, you can either pray it away or get closer to god and read the bible because he provides joy.  

My sister came back to where we currently live, Hawaii a damn near perfect prison, from college for the summer break. (To know more about what her experiences have been recently, I suggest you check out her testimony too.) When she came home, I was already starting to stray from typical beliefs and thoughts. I was also struggling with wanting to embrace my aromanticism/asexuality and fearing using such words. My sister encouraged me to accept not only my sexuality (or lack thereof) , but also accepting that I didn't want to be Christian and realizing that I never really wanted to be.

I feel as though each day, I realize more horrible things about my life here. We like to now say Hellish Rant in place of 'good talk' because of it being a specific triggering phrase our parents always use when referring to manipulating us in multiple ways (emotionally and mentally mainly) and making us feel like shit for five hours. A lot of what I have realized is in part attributed to many Hellish Rants my sister and I have had recently. From her being at college and in a good and healthy relationship, she has experienced what is good/right to then come here and realize that so much of our life and the way we are treated is very wrong and abusive.

'Depersonalization', that is my current way of surviving. Also, dissociating from so much of my life and becoming emotionally removed apart from occasional anger. With that in mind, when my sister would be talking about something that our father did, be pointing out how wrong those actions were, I would start to realize how the same things had been happening to me too. Same goes for pointing out emotionally/mentally abusive and manipulative thing both our parents say to us. The worst of the recent realizations being that our father sexually abuses us through his touches 'that he isn't doing' and our mom doesn't care about. 

At a young age I developed a slight touch aversion due to physical bullying at schools. Only occasionally would something trigger me and I couldn't stand to be too close, much less touched, by my family. My parents would get offended and force me to allow them to touch me (even simply somewhere appropriate was too much). Guilt trips and crying would usually ensue. They made my touch aversion worse. Even now this still happens and they both say 'I made you so I get to touch you'.

I have also had a severe back injury almost two years ago, which was not taken seriously (still barely is), and I am still in severe pain every day from. The injury was falling from a tall ladder and landing on a tree stump, which hit right next to and partially on my spine. Because of this, my entire back, shoulders, and neck are almost always in pain and I most certainly never want to be touched there. I also feel quite vulnerable with those areas because of it.

My father loves to slap a hand roughly on my shoulder and squeeze (always the one that has more pain) and gets offended when I yell because of the immense and sudden pain he just caused. He also loves to place a full hand on my back, which has been gradually moving lower in recent times.

Most recently, I was standing in our kitchen waiting on popcorn in the microwave. My parents had already ate, but neither one of my sister or I had because of the tendency to skip meals. Being that it was late evening and I hadn't ate anything, I was quite hungry and grabbed a small snack out of the pantry to eat while waiting on the popcorn. While I was in the pantry, my dad had come into the kitchen for no apparent reason really. I was eating my oatmeal pie and my father stands slightly facing me and places his hand on my lower back, right where my injury happened and I could almost feel his fingers on my butt too. He stood there staring at me, saying nothing, with his hand on me for what felt like an eternity. To the point where I thought I might puke, I stood there saying nothing as well, too frozen to do anything. Finally I tried to move away, but his hand stayed. I made an inhuman turn, dodge, and faced the other way and I still felt his hand until I nearly fell off to the side did his hand leave my lower back. I immediately felt disgusted, he then decided to seem funny or some shit by eating a ton of rice that had been sitting out could for a half hour. I threw away the oatmeal pie and spit out what was in my mouth, I can't eat the damn things now. I still had to wait for my popcorn, standing next to him as he smacked on the rice making me feel even more disgusted. My sister had to explain to me (when I told her what had happened) that it wasn't just my injury that makes that wrong, you just don't touch your child like that.

My father also likes to touch my sister and mine's butts. He likes to act as though he isn't touching anything or like what he is doing isn't wrong. Just last night, we had company over (two other Chaplain families) and I stood next to a counter in the kitchen. My dad passed by me (with plenty of space to walk farther away and also keep his damn hands to himself) he did walk a little far away thankfully, but he reached out and put his hand to my butt, kept it there for a second and let it brush along my butt until he was out of reach. 

One of the few things keeping me going is the current knowledge of an outside world where I can make my own choices, embrace my sexuality, and embrace being non-binary. The other thing being my ache for vengeance for two lives and childhoods wrecked by them. The only relationship I care to have with my parents is the one that gets me graduated from high school and college, so essentially an easy money bank. 

In my beliefs now is this: if undeniable proof of some religion's form of god showed up in front of me or even god himself, I would still believe in not believing in any religion or god, I would say to the proof or god himself to 'shove it' and I would move on with my life. 

The pain caused by Christianity, emotional, mental, and physical trauma from my parents runs deep. So I kindly ask that people of faith, Christians specifically, be careful what they comment on th

is thread and to not try to evangelize me or put me back into faith. I truly do welcome any polite suggestions of ways to self-help my issues with mental health.

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Blue: just to say I feel for you. Thank you for such a brave story, sad, sad, sad. Instinctively I feel your father needs to be called-out; your statement about being financially dependent is so important IMO and is a hurdle to be faced. Does your father have a management system, a line manager? He/she needs to know about his behaviour. Does his behaviour extend to 'boys' (or 'girls') in the military?

Being a chaplain, will he move to another posting and might this provide a way of getting away from home? Your sister might provide essential support?

Sorry can't say anything else.

Keep strong.

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Hi Blue -

Thanks for sharing your story.  I'm so sorry for the situation you are in.  Are you old enough to move out?   It certainly sounds abusive to me.  If you are a minor, i would absolutely advise reporting this to child protective services.  That can be a scary step but you absolutely must protect yourself!

 

Please embrace who you are - resist the guilty feelings others are trying to place on you.  You sound smart and strong.

 

We're here for you.

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So sorry that all this happened to you, Blue. As a father, I cant imagine treating any child of mine that way...thats not what a real dad does. Stay strong...you can do this.

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Wow Blue, that is a lot to deal with! I may comment a few different times here but this is the thing that has my attention now, " Ever since sixth grade I have been struggling with anxiety, depression, and being suicidal." Depression can be a major concern especially if it sometimes pushes you toward suicidal thoughts. The very next time you feel suicidal or even leaning in that direction call the suicide prevention hotline,

https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/.

1-800-273-8255.

Perhaps you have already used this resource but if not you can feel confident that the professionals and trained volunteers that answer incoming calls really care about your situation and will most definitely listen to you. They can help you understand why you're feeling the way you are and assess how volatile you current state of mind might be. They can provide appropriate references for safeguarding your mental health and getting you the emotional support you might need to make it through a crisis. This service is designed for people (adults or children) like you who are substantially isolated as I believe your writing describes, so don't think you maybe are making too big of a deal out of your feelings or that you might be making too much of your current state of mind. If your aren't sure but think maybe you are feeling suicidal or heading that direction then just dial that number and explain your feelings and let them help you decide how serious your situation is. I want to get this out there for you so just quickly I'll add that you father is sexually off base and is too slow understanding what no means (even an implied no). Right now your best defense is letting him know that his touching isn't welcomed or appropriate as you've already begun to do. Don't let time pass enduring a wrong touch. If necessary just call him on it. Say you don't think it's OK and that you're going to go to child protective services and describe what he's doing to you if it doesn't stop immediately and forever. I know this is a huge step and defies the power structure but that is exactly why it will be so effective. You are quite a bit more powerful than you think just stay calm be deliberate and use your resources. I'm so glad you decided to share with us. Take care of yourself because really you're all you have. I believe you have a very exciting interesting life ahead that's well worth fighting for.   

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23 hours ago, nontheistpilgrim said:

Blue: just to say I feel for you. Thank you for such a brave story, sad, sad, sad. Instinctively I feel your father needs to be called-out; your statement about being financially dependent is so important IMO and is a hurdle to be faced. Does your father have a management system, a line manager? He/she needs to know about his behaviour. Does his behaviour extend to 'boys' (or 'girls') in the military?

Being a chaplain, will he move to another posting and might this provide a way of getting away from home? Your sister might provide essential support?

Sorry can't say anything else.

Keep strong.

I am Blue's sister. Our father will probably have another duty station to report to next summer, which will be another year for Blue to endure at home. I will be going off to college and do not plan on coming back to the island. I will do my best to support Blue in any way that I can and definitely will be checking up as much as I can.

9 hours ago, Insightful said:

Hi Blue -

Thanks for sharing your story.  I'm so sorry for the situation you are in.  Are you old enough to move out?   It certainly sounds abusive to me.  If you are a minor, i would absolutely advise reporting this to child protective services.  That can be a scary step but you absolutely must protect yourself!

 

Please embrace who you are - resist the guilty feelings others are trying to place on you.  You sound smart and strong.

 

We're here for you.

Both Blue and I have been reading a lot of the reactions and advice to our stories and noticed a trend with the mention of reporting the abuse. The past two weeks have been extremely abusive and exhausting, which has caused us to seriously consider getting help by reporting the abuse to our doctor or a child protective services. Do you know anything about the process or where to research the process? 

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1 hour ago, Dreamer said:

I am Blue's sister. Our father will probably have another duty station to report to next summer, which will be another year for Blue to endure at home. I will be going off to college and do not plan on coming back to the island. I will do my best to support Blue in any way that I can and definitely will be checking up as much as I can.

Both Blue and I have been reading a lot of the reactions and advice to our stories and noticed a trend with the mention of reporting the abuse. The past two weeks have been extremely abusive and exhausting, which has caused us to seriously consider getting help by reporting the abuse to our doctor or a child protective services. Do you know anything about the process or where to research the process? 

I hesitate to post. I am not a psychologist and have no idea how your father might react if he is challenged or 'threatened'.

I do think he needs to be called out or reported for such abuse. But....

My experience of the military is long past yet I don't really believe that much has changed in the UK. So if I've got your father's military wrong - apologies.

The UK military is totally authority-based. People MUST do as they are told all the time. This is why, for example, so many of the homeless on our streets are ex-military - they cannot cope with making their own decisions (that's an over-simplication perhaps). If your commanding officer says jump, you jump. If you put a foot wrong you get disciplined.  So I'm thinking that your father would react strongly if you said you were going to inform his superiors about his abuse. And this is where only you and your sister can know the best way forward. And this is about you and your best interests. He may stop (??) or he may take more drastic action: I don't have any idea, of course.

Perhaps your father has a denominational connection as well as a military? If so, he will have some sort of 'bishop' or 'overseer' to whom abuse could be reported.

The big 'what-if', of course, is that the church and possibly the military may not act or believe you. Just like your father, it seems, they could go into denial.

I wish you well in your difficult life and decision-making. I don't see any happiness for you in remaining in your situation unless things change but I feel, instinctively, that you can bring about change.

As I finish, I've just had a thought. I haven't gone back over your posts so I could be barking up the wrong tree (as we say over here). Is there some sort of trade-off that you could work with for a year or so? Like 'I'll continue to attend church if you leave me alone'? I would suppose that the pain of attending church is less than the pain of abuse? Just a thought.

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3 minutes ago, nontheistpilgrim said:

The big 'what-if', of course, is that the church and possibly the military may not act or believe you. Just like your father, it seems, they could go into denial.

I wish you well in your difficult life and decision-making. I don't see any happiness for you in remaining in your situation unless things change but I feel, instinctively, that you can bring about change.

As I finish, I've just had a thought. I haven't gone back over your posts so I could be barking up the wrong tree (as we say over here). Is there some sort of trade-off that you could work with for a year or so? Like 'I'll continue to attend church if you leave me alone'? I would suppose that the pain of attending church is less than the pain of abuse? Just a thought.

You may be right about the church and military believing our testimonies of abuse. I was planning on visiting a medical professional and unofficially asking about a "hypothetical situation" pertaining to the sexual, mental, and religious abuse that we have been suffering. Hopefully, they will give me answers about what would happen if I were to officially report the abuse and then I can work from there?

It's funny you mention the trade-off. Blue and I have been doing just that lately. In order to stay home from a bible study (when we were both feeling ill and couldn't walk), Blue had to agree to go to all church functions without complaint from then on. It was a terribly unfair trade-off in my opinion, especially since neither of us were well enough to go anyways. However, since when have Christian parents been reasonable with skipping on church events? 

I have also had to make my own sacrifices. In order to get the loan and one-bedroom apartment, I had to lie that I was willing to break up with my current non-Christian boyfriend and that I would never have him over without other company. My parents also mentioned sending with me a security camera that they bought which they already have access too. So basically spying on me. Hopefully, they do not remember to send that with me or I will just have to pretend to lose it or break it when I get back to school. 

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5 minutes ago, nontheistpilgrim said:

I hesitate to post. I am not a psychologist and have no idea how your father might react if he is challenged or 'threatened'.

I do think he needs to be called out or reported for such abuse. But....

My experience of the military is long past yet I don't really believe that much has changed in the UK. So if I've got your father's military wrong - apologies.

The UK military is totally authority-based. People MUST do as they are told all the time. This is why, for example, so many of the homeless on our streets are ex-military - they cannot cope with making their own decisions (that's an over-simplication perhaps). If your commanding officer says jump, you jump. If you put a foot wrong you get disciplined.  So I'm thinking that your father would react strongly if you said you were going to inform his superiors about his abuse. And this is where only you and your sister can know the best way forward. And this is about you and your best interests. He may stop (??) or he may take more drastic action: I don't have any idea, of course.

Perhaps your father has a denominational connection as well as a military? If so, he will have some sort of 'bishop' or 'overseer' to whom abuse could be reported.

The big 'what-if', of course, is that the church and possibly the military may not act or believe you. Just like your father, it seems, they could go into denial.

I wish you well in your difficult life and decision-making. I don't see any happiness for you in remaining in your situation unless things change but I feel, instinctively, that you can bring about change.

As I finish, I've just had a thought. I haven't gone back over your posts so I could be barking up the wrong tree (as we say over here). Is there some sort of trade-off that you could work with for a year or so? Like 'I'll continue to attend church if you leave me alone'? I would suppose that the pain of attending church is less than the pain of abuse? Just a thought.

I really appreciate your posts, but I don’t know if informing his superiors is the way to go for us. Being that his superiors are all bible thumping Christian assholes like him, just with higher ranks. To your last note- I’m not sure that would be possible either. I have to choke down panic attacks at every church function as it is. And any conversation on such topics with him is quite exhausting being that he is ‘never wrong’ and never changes, but loves to victim blame and say we need to change. I’ve been thinking that I need to just focus on getting mental help do about a month (certain things are coming up), then get out of the situation and start a new life. It is drastic, but it is the only thing that has brought me a bit of peace of mind. I need to leave and so does my sister. I figure a lot people make their way through college and life (maybe with a lot of debt, but hey!) all the time, so I can surely figure it out. Thank you so much for all of your support, care, and suggestions.

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I hadn't thought that military chaplains would be part of a community of religious nutters  - I don't think that would happen over here, although there could well be lone extremists within a more liberal set-up. That poses problems., I can see that.

I have a relative who is in denial over any resposibility for the breakdown in their marriage and who says god is on their side. I can't get past that, even though I think they have had an affair themselves - which is the reason they started divorce proceedings against a partner who is accused, but probably non guilty, of an affair. Utter rubbish situation but the religious nutter cocoon is impenetrable.

I think you are right in thinking you need to leave, both for your physical and mental health and also for your 'spiritual' health (outside of christianity and god, of course!😉)

Peace!

 

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I added a bit that got lost - you seem to be strong enough to do it. Just do it in your best time and interests.

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Greetings, Blue! I'm also non-binary, although probably older than your parents, so my experience is a little bit different. You are very fortunate to have a sister that supports who you are! What little family I have is elderly people who are just not up to handling any of this gender stuff. You might find this forum beneficial (there are other forums on this site where you can discuss being asexual and aromantic): 

 

https://www.asexuality.org/en/forum/57-gender-discussion/

 

Someone may have already recommended this website, but they can also help you: 

 

https://www.thetrevorproject.org/

 

I don't think I'm being melodramatic when I say that I think it is important to your very survival that you get OUT of that household and away from your parents, especially your father! You might need to become an emancipated minor, or enter foster care for a few years... you might even be able to have your sister appointed as your guardian, since it sounds like she is a legal adult. None of these things will make for an easy life, but it will be a better life by far than what you have been enduring. Stay strong!

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14 minutes ago, nontheistpilgrim said:

I hadn't thought that military chaplains would be part of a community of religious nutters  - I don't think that would happen over here, although there could well be lone extremists within a more liberal set-up. That poses problems., I can see that.

I have a relative who is in denial over any resposibility for the breakdown in their marriage and who says god is on their side. I can't get past that, even though I think they have had an affair themselves - which is the reason they started divorce proceedings against a partner who is accused, but probably non guilty, of an affair. Utter rubbish situation but the religious nutter cocoon is impenetrable.

I think you are right in thinking you need to leave, both for your physical and mental health and also for your 'spiritual' health (outside of christianity and god, of course!😉)

Peace!

 

It is scary to think about what religious people can get away with by using their beliefs and religion as an excuse. I am surprised to hear that your relative is getting a divorce since some religions are against divorce. During one of my mother's lectures about the bible, I asked her what the bible said on rape and abuse in a marriage because earlier she had talked about how divorce is sinful and wrong. She hesitated when I asked that question. I knew the answer. Women are supposed to be subject to their husbands. Divorce is wrong in the bible. And divorce isn't an option in any manner. However, she said that she personally thinks that I should protect myself and get out of a relationship like that. But then she went back to saying that I wouldn't be in a situation like that anyway with a Christian man. All of the conditions and the contradictions make my head spin. 

My mother hesitated because she knew that her faith doesn't protect her children. Her faith doesn't protect women. Her faith doesn't care about women. Her faith allows for the victim blaming that we see today about rape and sexual assault. Her faith allows for my father to touch me inappropriately in front of her and she can't say a damn thing. Yet, somehow she still doesn't see any of it as wrong. Beats me. I think they're all lost. 

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20 minutes ago, nontheistpilgrim said:

I added a bit that got lost - you seem to be strong enough to do it. Just do it in your best time and interests.

I really do appreciate your support and thoughts on mine and my sister’s posts. That truly is what we have needed, kind and polite suggestions. To receive support is an added bonus. Which I also appreciate you giving on our comments on my sister’s post. It is quite a mess and I don’t like to get into such things. Ever. I try to be kind, but share my thoughts as I wish others would. When we received responses like we did, it does mess with us quite a lot. So really, thank you.

 

I hope my sister and I will help our mental health and get out of our abusive situation very soon. 

 

Many thanks to everyone who has responded with suggestions and support thus far.

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13 minutes ago, Hole_In_My_Heart said:

Greetings, Blue! I'm also non-binary, although probably older than your parents, so my experience is a little bit different. You are very fortunate to have a sister that supports who you are! What little family I have is elderly people who are just not up to handling any of this gender stuff. You might find this forum beneficial (there are other forums on this site where you can discuss being asexual and aromantic): 

 

https://www.asexuality.org/en/forum/57-gender-discussion/

 

Someone may have already recommended this website, but they can also help you: 

 

https://www.thetrevorproject.org/

 

I don't think I'm being melodramatic when I say that I think it is important to your very survival that you get OUT of that household and away from your parents, especially your father! You might need to become an emancipated minor, or enter foster care for a few years... you might even be able to have your sister appointed as your guardian, since it sounds like she is a legal adult. None of these things will make for an easy life, but it will be a better life by far than what you have been enduring. Stay strong!

I love these sites! Thank you very much for showing them to me!

And thank you for the suggestions for getting when getting out of the situation. I didn’t know those were options and will research them more. 

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14 minutes ago, Hole_In_My_Heart said:

Greetings, Blue! I'm also non-binary, although probably older than your parents, so my experience is a little bit different. You are very fortunate to have a sister that supports who you are! What little family I have is elderly people who are just not up to handling any of this gender stuff. You might find this forum beneficial (there are other forums on this site where you can discuss being asexual and aromantic): 

 

https://www.asexuality.org/en/forum/57-gender-discussion/

 

Someone may have already recommended this website, but they can also help you: 

 

https://www.thetrevorproject.org/

 

I don't think I'm being melodramatic when I say that I think it is important to your very survival that you get OUT of that household and away from your parents, especially your father! You might need to become an emancipated minor, or enter foster care for a few years... you might even be able to have your sister appointed as your guardian, since it sounds like she is a legal adult. None of these things will make for an easy life, but it will be a better life by far than what you have been enduring. Stay strong!

I'm really glad that Blue has been able to get support on this website. Those sites you recommended look really great for learning more and gaining support!

I also wanted to add on a side note that I'm sorry about what happened to your first testimony. I'm glad that you were able to repost it! I hope that you have as much support as you have shown us!

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34 minutes ago, Dreamer said:

It is scary to think about what religious people can get away with by using their beliefs and religion as an excuse. I am surprised to hear that your relative is getting a divorce since some religions are against divorce. During one of my mother's lectures about the bible, I asked her what the bible said on rape and abuse in a marriage because earlier she had talked about how divorce is sinful and wrong. She hesitated when I asked that question. I knew the answer. Women are supposed to be subject to their husbands. Divorce is wrong in the bible. And divorce isn't an option in any manner. However, she said that she personally thinks that I should protect myself and get out of a relationship like that. But then she went back to saying that I wouldn't be in a situation like that anyway with a Christian man. All of the conditions and the contradictions make my head spin. 

My mother hesitated because she knew that her faith doesn't protect her children. Her faith doesn't protect women. Her faith doesn't care about women. Her faith allows for the victim blaming that we see today about rape and sexual assault. Her faith allows for my father to touch me inappropriately in front of her and she can't say a damn thing. Yet, somehow she still doesn't see any of it as wrong. Beats me. I think they're all lost. 

I don't want to derail this thread! I'll say this... to say this .... (as they say!).

My relative attends a fundamentalist church. Although I am a non-theist I still am interested in comparative religion, so I like to check out the Bible. There are two grounds for divorce from a fundamentalist point of view: adultery and a non-believing spouse who leaves the marital home (I think I've remembered correctly). So my relative is divorcing on grounds of incompatability which is not Biblical! They can't prove idolotry because I don't think it has happened whereas they, I'm sure from their behaviour, have had a besotted affair in their head with two previous ministers. My relative is in complete denial about being in the wrong - but it has been plain to see that the marriage has not worked for years because of incompatibility on both sides. My relative even asked her partner if they were a Christian - I suppose looking for Biblical justification for commencing divorce proceedings.

What you say about the fundamentalist opinion of women and wives is so true.

I've said this to say....fundamentalists will twist the Bible to mean what they want it to mean. What you say is standard fundamentalism but it is warped. And they hide behind years of being taught that god is on their side, god will protect them in adversity blah blah blah. Like my relative, it seems your parents are always in the right and, probably also like my relative, have to have the last word. And then will deny that if challenged.

I have no idea how to cope with such stupidity. I recently reacted (over-reacted?) to my relative who then got someone else to call me to complain.

Thank the lucky stars for sane and helpful websites like this one.

 

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24 minutes ago, nontheistpilgrim said:

I don't want to derail this thread! I'll say this... to say this .... (as they say!).

My relative attends a fundamentalist church. Although I am a non-theist I still am interested in comparative religion, so I like to check out the Bible. There are two grounds for divorce from a fundamentalist point of view: adultery and a non-believing spouse who leaves the marital home (I think I've remembered correctly). So my relative is divorcing on grounds of incompatability which is not Biblical! They can't prove idolotry because I don't think it has happened whereas they, I'm sure from their behaviour, have had a besotted affair in their head with two previous ministers. My relative is in complete denial about being in the wrong - but it has been plain to see that the marriage has not worked for years because of incompatibility on both sides. My relative even asked her partner if they were a Christian - I suppose looking for Biblical justification for commencing divorce proceedings.

What you say about the fundamentalist opinion of women and wives is so true.

I've said this to say....fundamentalists will twist the Bible to mean what they want it to mean. What you say is standard fundamentalism but it is warped. And they hide behind years of being taught that god is on their side, god will protect them in adversity blah blah blah. Like my relative, it seems your parents are always in the right and, probably also like my relative, have to have the last word. And then will deny that if challenged.

I have no idea how to cope with such stupidity. I recently reacted (over-reacted?) to my relative who then got someone else to call me to complain.

Thank the lucky stars for sane and helpful websites like this one.

 

So true. It turns my brain to mush whenever I try to challenge their beliefs or views, let alone bring up another alternative belief or view. I suspect most religions were created by power-hungry people that desired to gain control and popularity. Which has lead to the passing down of the idea that religion sits someone on a throne where they are given the liberty to judge others and be blameless for whatever they say or do. 

I really do appreciate being able to hear from others on this website too. I think it provides a healthier outlook of the future. This site helps many of us realize that we're not the only ones who are experiencing this type of abuse. 

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Blue and Dreamer: A few ideas, none of which might be sensible but perhaps one might set you off thinking in a new creative way? None would happen overnight. Most would mean some comprising for you. Most are attempts to beat them at their own game - if you can stand it.

Find a friend in a neibouring church and ask your parents about attending there together.
Find a military person who might be willing to talk freely about the work of the chaplain/s. Perhaps you could learn something of use.
If there are other chaplains...perhaps a Roman Catholic would be the best (ok I know RC's are a red rag to fundamentalists)....you could ask to meet in confidence and share your experiences of abuse. A decent chaplain could be very supportive and who knows what they might already know? You could be the catalyst for valuable change without your father being aware of your involvement.
If you can't fight 'em, join 'em...offer to be some sort of children's or youth worker in your church. 
If you play a musical instrument...get back to me, this is my particular interest and I'll offer my experiences and some advice.
Perhaps offer to help on a social level, arranging outings, sports meetings, visits to museums etc. You might be seen as supporting the church whereas you would actually be following your own agenda!
Go on a church-hop - try out all sorts of worship experiences. Your parents might agree, believing that you are 'growing up' and will eventually return to the one true fold! After all, you are furthering your education. (OK if what happened to me happens to you it won't work: I was accused by my fundamentalist friends of beginning the slide to non-belief when I started furthering my education!).
You don't need to respond to any of this but I hope it might set walking you on a different path (what I would call a pilgrimage, not, of course, a Christian one!).
 

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7 hours ago, Dreamer said:

I'm really glad that Blue has been able to get support on this website. Those sites you recommended look really great for learning more and gaining support!

I also wanted to add on a side note that I'm sorry about what happened to your first testimony. I'm glad that you were able to repost it! I hope that you have as much support as you have shown us!

 

It's still a difficult world for non-binary people, so I'm glad that your sibling is getting knowledge and support at such a young age; I think that will really make a difference, but the most important support they will get will be from YOU, because you're a family member and involved in their real life. There might be free legal aid of some sort offered on your college campus, and I highly recommend checking that out and getting an idea of what you would need to do to become their legal guardian if that ended up being the best option. I know, taken care of another person, even a teenager who is nearly grown up, is a big responsibility, but I have the feeling that you are up for it! The situation that they are enduring with your dad is absolutely horrifying, especially because it could one day become tragically worse. Please do whatever it takes to get them out of that house!

 

Thank you for the sympathy about my original testimony! It kind of sucked, but I figure, if that was the worst thing that happened to me that week, that would be a pretty easy life that many people would envy, right? It was definitely great to get some support with what I'm going through!

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The US military has an extremely strong hyper-evangelical web that will protect its members, much like the Catholic hierarchy has protected pedophile priests as holy even though they are clearly evil SOBs. There is resistance building to it from within, but there is only so much that can be done, and is usually the result of lawsuits not just talking to someone.

 

The cult always places blame on the victims, because they don't believe their god can fail. Their god is just an imaginary friend, so any abuse they want to dole out is doled out and they get a pass from their invisible buddy. Any non-conformance is punished, and again the victim is blamed. 

 

I have to disagree with nontheistpilgrim's last post about going further into church activities. They want conformity of thought, emotion, and action, and they always always protect pastors as "anointed" by god, so you are toys to them from the outset. I'd suggest finding secular authorities or attorneys to try and get out of the house and away from your family early. But I also know from personal experience that a lot of government authorities and police are in the cult also. They really can't see that their missions are insidious. The cult has a default respect in American culture, one that it doesn't deserve. 

 

 

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Fuego. thanks for the information on US military. (Here my prejudices will show.) I find it difficult to believe that the US is so, what shall I say?, backward? out of touch? Of course, not all Americans, but many more than is healthy for a country, ISTM. Look at Trump - no, perhaps not!

My suggestions should have included a note to say that I only see these things as a temporary, 'tiding-over' action. I have never been in a family abusive situation and my experience of fundamentalism was stopped by, for very different reasons, my moving away from home - but it still took me 50 years to be free. So my ideas are from ignorance. However, it is possible to attend a church and be switched-off for most of the time in certain circumstances for some people.

It's odd, isn't it, that once you leave, you discover much more that is nasty within? Then you wonder why you didn't leave before.

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This is to Dreamer but I know you all read everything. I don't have personal experience but I believe if you and Blue went to child protective services you would be immediately heard and taken seriously. Unlike the church or the military, child protective services are trained to spot abuse and as a primary function expected to effectively stop it. I believe just the fact that both you and Blue find his touching uncomfortable and sexually suggestive is enough to confirm that it is inappropriate. The social workers jobs would be threatened if they appeared to blow you off and suggest you were making too much out of what was being done to you. In my opinion your father would in all probability not escalate his sexually inappropriate touching once officially confronted because to do so would put his reputation, employment and church status in jeapordy. So far he has enjoyed pushing the sexual touching as far as he can without doing (in his opinion) anything that could be called clearly sexual and he has escaped without so much as a scratch. Stepping out into the spotlight to force sexual groping on his daughters would be a very big and very dangerous step up in the nature and degree of offensive behavior he would be engaging in, leaving him very little room to escape detection and prosecution. (This is not to say that he won't keep pushing the envelope if nothing seems to be preventing him or exposing him). I would say that once child protective services contacted your family they would make it clear to both your father and mother (and to you and Blue) exactly what constitutes crossing the line at this point and that if he decided to go there they would take immediate action. If your mother ever saw anything suspicious and did nothing to intervene she would be complicit. Whatever child services decided to do it would be their job to see that you and Blue are not ever placed in harms way. I don't think this is at all beyond the abilities of child protective services. You and Blue have every right to expect to feel and be safe in your home without fear of sexual advances from your father. As I've said before you have more power than you have been led to believe by your controlling parents and church. Of course your father could withhold co signing on college loans but once child protective services has made contact with him any changes in his behavior that negatively effect you and Blue could well be seen as retaliatory and could cause your father's behavior to receive additional negative scrutiny.

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Blue:

This is very serious shit. Dan has good ideas about child protective services. On your sister's thread I suggested calling the National Domestic Violence hotline: 1-800-799-7233 from a safe phone. Having just read both your and her posts, I urge you to do this without delay. Here is a link to their website. https://www.thehotline.org

(And never use a computer at home for anything you don't want your father to see. It's almost impossible to erase everything. Go to a public or school library.)

 

I also suggested to her to Google "assertive rights." On the sites that come up you'll find validation for what you're doing in a concise, well-worded way. Check more than one link as there are variations on the theme.

 

Please stay with us and keep us updated.

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Hi Blue:

 

Please share this with your sister. It was on a holiday card I got a few years back and that I've kept on my desk. I hope it helps you as it has helped me:

 

Start where you are.

Use what you have.

Do what you can.

— Arthur Ashe

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