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So tired of people assuming I am christian... :(

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

That.  So tired of people just assuming I am christian, or if not christian then nothing, and then being sad for me because they think that.  I am tired of the subtle and not so subtle pressure to adhere to christian values and ideology when I don't believe in it at all.  I am tired of the proselytizing and bible quotes for people trying to prove I am "wrong".  I am tired of people wrapping christianity up within the context of being a good citizen or worthwhile person.  How do other non-christian mamas handle this? I want to be respectful of other people's beliefs, but it is so hard when I feel constantly disrespected.

post #2 of 28

Just curious about what leads people to assume that you're Christian?  Do you follow any type of spiritual practice?  I'm Episcopalian, but I personally believe that everyone has their own path and if someone is a good person & can show that example to his/her kids, then that's a good thing. 

post #3 of 28

We live in the south - not just the bible belt - but the belt buckle of the bible belt ROTFLMAO.gif, so it is always assumed that we are christian too. It was kinda overwhelming when we first moved to the south, but we just roll with it now. When somebody asks what church we go to I say that we don't go to church. If they continue on with something (you should come to my church...), I cut them off and say that we are not interested in going to church.  When somebody prays before a meal (like at work or something). I just stand there and ignore it, but I do put my head down. When somebody tries to start a conversation about how we should be christian (which happens all the time!), I just tell them that I am not interested in discussing it.

 

In short, I just refuse to engage in any kind of discussion about my beliefs, even if it means being rude to somebody. I have been dragged into too many conversations where I have to defend myself to even open myself up to any more discussions about it, even if they may have turned out to be worthwhile, y/k. Overall I don't see Christians as a particularly accepting or respectful group of people (just IMO, don't flame me!), so I just don't engage with them - but then again, I live in a region full of fundamentalists, so my opinion of Christians is probably pretty skewed.

post #4 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LisaW412 View Post

Just curious about what leads people to assume that you're Christian?  Do you follow any type of spiritual practice?  I'm Episcopalian, but I personally believe that everyone has their own path and if someone is a good person & can show that example to his/her kids, then that's a good thing. 


I don't "do anything" that would lead anyone to assume I am christian.  It seems to be people's default setting.  I actually find it rather offensive. 

 

post #5 of 28
I also find some things offensive. I do believe in Jesus and pray to the Great Creator, but I don't believe in most of the bible. So I am misleading to most people as I don't fit the mold.
post #6 of 28

Interesting.  I live in the NY-Metropolitan area, so I generally try not to assume anything about what a person believes.

post #7 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by rcr View Post

We live in the south - not just the bible belt - but the belt buckle of the bible belt ROTFLMAO.gif, so it is always assumed that we are christian too. It was kinda overwhelming when we first moved to the south, but we just roll with it now. When somebody asks what church we go to I say that we don't go to church. If they continue on with something (you should come to my church...), I cut them off and say that we are not interested in going to church. 


The last sentence above is where I continue my story. We were discriminated against in our wealthy neighborhood in Atlanta because we were non church going.

I didn't want that for the kids.

We moved to another part of the country and not a single person here has EVER asked me what church I attend or if I will go with them.

Edited by philomom - 6/25/11 at 8:50pm
post #8 of 28

Well as a Muslim who used to live in the South, I can relate.  I had an out as I attended a Christian seminary before converting to Islam--so it sort of let me say that I made an "informed" choice. 

 

Honestly, usually I'll just say "I'm so happy you've found a spiritual path that works for you."  You could say, "I'm comfortable with you praying for me (if you are)--but I honestly find all of this proslytizing off-putting.  I think if I'm ever going to become a Christian, it would be under my own initiative--but thanks anyway."  Or you could say, "If I'm going to have a personal relationship with Jesus, I don't need you to be the middleman." ;)

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by New_Natural_Mom View Post

That.  So tired of people just assuming I am christian, or if not christian then nothing, and then being sad for me because they think that.  I am tired of the subtle and not so subtle pressure to adhere to christian values and ideology when I don't believe in it at all.  I am tired of the proselytizing and bible quotes for people trying to prove I am "wrong".  I am tired of people wrapping christianity up within the context of being a good citizen or worthwhile person.  How do other non-christian mamas handle this? I want to be respectful of other people's beliefs, but it is so hard when I feel constantly disrespected.



 

post #9 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by umsami View Post
  Or you could say, "If I'm going to have a personal relationship with Jesus, I don't need you to be the middleman." ;)

 

 



 


Ha. Love that line.

 

post #10 of 28

I feel ya! I'm in Utah and most people just assume I am Mormon... which granted I was raised but still. I'm tired of the condescending looks and/or comments when people find out I am no longer a member. Or the "gentle suggestions" from my MIL: books, magazines, invitations to church, talking about Jesus with my daughter, etc though she knows we have chosen not to follow that particular path. 

I don't have any advice really other than what a pp already mentioned which is to just not engage in the conversation at all. 

post #11 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by New_Natural_Mom View Post




I don't "do anything" that would lead anyone to assume I am christian.  It seems to be people's default setting.  I actually find it rather offensive. 

 


Yep that's about it isn't it.  I lived all over the US and it is definitely more prevalent in the southern states...whereas in california nobody cares what religion you are mostly lol.  People in general in the US, unless they are NON christian themselves, just automatically assume that everyone is Christian.  And often are quite put out at the idea that someone might be of another faith, because that implies that you think theirs is rubbish. I guess? 

 

Interestingly enough, except in home schooling circles, down here in Australia what religion you are is a question that is literally almost never asked!
 

 

post #12 of 28

I grew up in the south. In my community we had "church goers" and drug addicts, with seemingly no one in between. A heavy handed fundamentalism was the default, and I'm not sure how I escaped being sucked in. My "born again" brother came to visit and just couldn't comprehend that we didn't want our kids "saved" because we reject the concept of sin or the devil. My point is, these folks aren't trying to be offensive, and generally not hateful. They just have a narrow worldview in this department.  Being comfortable with your own path, and polite refusal to engage ( I'm so glad you're happy, please pass the bean dip) really are the only ways I've found to deal with it. And I moved. Christianity is still the default assumption, but it's been a decade since anyone tried to "save" me.

 

post #13 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by umsami View Post

 Or you could say, "If I'm going to have a personal relationship with Jesus, I don't need you to be the middleman." wink1.gif

 

 



 


Great line, Love it!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by mntnmom View Post

Christianity is still the default assumption, but it's been a decade since anyone tried to "save" me.

 


Ahh that reminds me of how last week, my hard core baptist MIL who was visiting from out of town got me in a room and insisted that I say a particular phrase stating I except Jesus before I could leave. I could have left, but I did it to get her off my back about me being saved in her eyes. Goodness!
post #14 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamaboss View Post

I feel ya! I'm in Utah and most people just assume I am Mormon... which granted I was raised but still. I'm tired of the condescending looks and/or comments when people find out I am no longer a member. Or the "gentle suggestions" from my MIL: books, magazines, invitations to church, talking about Jesus with my daughter, etc though she knows we have chosen not to follow that particular path. 

I don't have any advice really other than what a pp already mentioned which is to just not engage in the conversation at all. 


Don't know how you do it. As an newly ex mormon (was born and raised in it), I still feel very judged by the few mormons I run into. I have to buy my wine on Sundays because the mormons wont be there to see me do it, Lol!


Question for y'all- christian by definition is believing in Jesus right? Or is it a more way of thinking or way of life? So someone that was Muslim, for example, may believe in the Jesus story, but does that make them also christian?
post #15 of 28

Most Christians believe in Jesus as their lord and savior, but not all believe that specifically. Some people in the trinity, the father, son and holy spirit as one and the same. I don't believe their to be a right answer. I am pagan and I believe in Jesus as great guy who helped show the world that love can heal, protect and care.

post #16 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Koalamom View Post

Question for y'all- christian by definition is believing in Jesus right? Or is it a more way of thinking or way of life? So someone that was Muslim, for example, may believe in the Jesus story, but does that make them also christian?


Christian by definition means believing in Jesus Christ. Christ = Messiah. Someone who believes in Jesus, in the sense of believing he existed, or believing he taught some good things, but does not believe Jesus was the Christ, is not a Christian. 

post #17 of 28


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Koalamom View Post

Question for y'all- christian by definition is believing in Jesus right? Or is it a more way of thinking or way of life? So someone that was Muslim, for example, may believe in the Jesus story, but does that make them also christian?


  The problem is: nearly every group of Christian makes up a definition that excludes others who consider themselves Christian as well. This group says you need baptism by immersion, this group says you have to speak in tongues and dress like "we" do. They might decide that "good" Christians support the Boy Scouts, or boycott the Boy Scouts and have their kids in AWANAS instead. That's why there are so many denominations claiming to be "real"Christians. Even if you do X and Y, someone will try to make you Z, or exclude you because you won't.

 

post #18 of 28

Yes, by definition, A Christian is someone who believes that Jesus is the Christ, the Messiah, and their savior. How one goes on to PRACTICE their Christianity can be VERY diverse. But you can't call yourself a  Christian and not believe that Jesus is the Christ. Well, I guess you can call yourself anything you want...lol :) But a Christian believes that Jesus Christ is their savior. 

post #19 of 28

This is also something I'm going to struggle with in the not too distant future. I recently lost my faith, as in 7 months ago, and I'm pregnant, due in February, with an evangelical Christian family who don't know I no longer believe. My mom doesn't know I no longer believe! When the baby is born, they're going to expect me to have some sort of baby dedication at a church. I haven't been to church in over a year since about a year or so ago, I came to the conclusion that the current Christian church is not biblical. Surprising my mom was fine with that. I have been thinking about visiting an Unitarian Universalist church, which would send my family into a tizzy. So everyone assumes I'm still a Christian and I have no idea how to deal with questions either.

post #20 of 28

From the beginning the church was very clear that to be a Christian meant believeing specific things about Christ and God the Father (and a little later The Holy Spirit).  They had no problem separating the real Christians from those people who were teaching false things about Christ.

 

That said....down south, I doubt I would be considered Christian enough.  My mom cannot wrap her head around it that I believe in Jesus, celebrate Christian holidays and baptize my kids.  I am Orthodox for crying out loud.  Its not like I fell off the edge of the world.  They are not just assuming you are Christian by a a generally accepted moderate definition but that you are Western Protestant Evangelical Christian who believes exactly what they do about politics .  So even a large chunk of Christians are subject to a) the visible shock and horror of finding out that someone is not an EveProt Christian (because if you are in the south and are Catholic or Orthodox you might as well be a Satanist) b) attempts to save us. 

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