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Old 12-23-2011, 10:01 PM
 
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I'm not meaning this to turn into any kind of debate.. but I have a question for you.

Say you raise your child in a certain religion (or lack there of) and later on in life your child turns to another religion (or none at all) that is different from how you raised him/her. Would you be disappointed? While I understand that everyone is entitled to their own beliefs, would you also be entitled to be a little sad and disappointed that they didn't continue the belief system you raised them as?

 
Old 12-23-2011, 10:31 PM
 
Location: TX
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I was going to start replying with "As an atheist...", but I remembered that atheists are just as likely to close and lock those doors to religious freedom. So instead, I'll say that I will raise my son to think for himself, but to question and then RE-question everything that demands a level of commitment. That is, any religion he's thinking of joining should be put under a magnifying glass before he gets too involved. I'll remind him that even things that look good can be bad, and he should always ask himself, "Is this going to be good for me and others?"

Would I be disappointed if my son became religious? Not at all, but I would be concerned, and I don't think I'd be able to turn it off for a while.
 
Old 12-23-2011, 11:04 PM
 
Location: here
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I guess it would depend. It would depend on the reason and the religion.
 
Old 12-23-2011, 11:36 PM
 
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I exposed my children to people of many religious faiths, not just different Christian denominations. When I say exposed, I don't mean brief encounters. For example, one of my children's sitters was Muslim. For quite a few years, they would spend their entire summers with her Muslim family while they were off school and I worked.

As a Catholic, turned athiest, turned agnostic, why did I purposely expose my children to so many beliefs? I thought it was important for them to be educated about the beliefs of the world. I wanted them to have an easier time figuring out what they believed because it's a long journey for a naturally logical mind. And I wanted them to know that Jewish and Muslim families have daily lives similar to our own.

Most wars in this world are fought under a religious premise disquising an economic goal. I felt it was important to provide them with the tools to cut through the propaganda and form their own educated conclusions.

Would i be bothered by their choice of religious or nonreligous faith? Overall, no. I would only be bothered if it were a cult or an extremist denomination of any faith because I provided them with this knowledge so they could love and accept all people, not so they could be brainwashed or hate. I don't care what religious belief they chose as tollerance is at their core.

They are young adults now. I'm very proud of their moral compass.
 
Old 12-24-2011, 12:46 AM
 
Location: Liberal Coast
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rezfreak View Post
I'm not meaning this to turn into any kind of debate.. but I have a question for you.

Say you raise your child in a certain religion (or lack there of) and later on in life your child turns to another religion (or none at all) that is different from how you raised him/her. Would you be disappointed? While I understand that everyone is entitled to their own beliefs, would you also be entitled to be a little sad and disappointed that they didn't continue the belief system you raised them as?
We would be very sad. However, the disappointment would probably be towards ourselves, as we would feel we did not do our job properly. I know that the majority of my family is more than just sad and disappointed that I converted from Protestantism to Catholicism, and I know why they feel that way.

My husband would take it very hard, especially if our children decided to believe something other than any form of Christianity. In our tradition, it is considered to be on the dad if the children don't follow the religion because it is part of his duty as a father. It would be very hard for him. However, we wouldn't be like most of my family and make snide remarks about it.

We would continue to love our children. They would know that we didn't support the decision, though.
 
Old 12-24-2011, 05:38 AM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
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Both our adult children were raised in a Christian home. We were very active in our Methodist church and like most Southern families, our social lives as well were very much intertwined with our church.

As young adults one became a strident atheist while the other considered becoming a missionary and even attended seminary. Now at 30 and 28 both have mellowed somewhat with the wannabe missionary not even attending church at all and becoming very disillusioned with it all and the atheist becoming a tiny bit more tolerant.


These 2 younger ones are not being raised in a Christian home. We have sporadically attended Unitarian churches and a few Christian music concerts but we are not teaching our kids any of the doctrines of any religion except how to be good people. It does make me sad that they will be missing out on some traditions which are religion based. But as long as they are growing into strong caring young women who know it is their responsibility to give back more than they take I think we as parents are doing OK. We would be terribly disappointed if they went to any extreme but we are teaching them to think for themselves and not to be sheep.
 
Old 12-24-2011, 06:16 AM
 
Location: TX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psr13 View Post
We would be very sad. However, the disappointment would probably be towards ourselves, as we would feel we did not do our job properly. I know that the majority of my family is more than just sad and disappointed that I converted from Protestantism to Catholicism, and I know why they feel that way.

My husband would take it very hard, especially if our children decided to believe something other than any form of Christianity. In our tradition, it is considered to be on the dad if the children don't follow the religion because it is part of his duty as a father. It would be very hard for him. However, we wouldn't be like most of my family and make snide remarks about it.

We would continue to love our children. They would know that we didn't support the decision, though.
This is how my mom is. Since the day I (finally) told her I was an atheist, she's occasionally brought up the subject of God and Jesus. I know it bothers her, and it's the hardest thing I've had to deal with to date. She is VERY religious, and 100% convinced that God is not only the one true faith but a fact. Of course, I don't try to convince her otherwise. In fact, I remain a steadfast listener to everything she has to say. I even made it a point to tell her that I'm not shutting 'God' out; I'll forever keep my eyes and mind open to the possibility of his existence. This is the best you can do in my situation.
 
Old 12-24-2011, 07:12 AM
 
Location: Liberal Coast
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vic 2.0 View Post
This is how my mom is. Since the day I (finally) told her I was an atheist, she's occasionally brought up the subject of God and Jesus. I know it bothers her, and it's the hardest thing I've had to deal with to date. She is VERY religious, and 100% convinced that God is not only the one true faith but a fact. Of course, I don't try to convince her otherwise. In fact, I remain a steadfast listener to everything she has to say. I even made it a point to tell her that I'm not shutting 'God' out; I'll forever keep my eyes and mind open to the possibility of his existence. This is the best you can do in my situation.
She probably believes your damning yourself to Hell if you don't believe, which is why it's hard for her. That's the same reason it's such a problem for my family. Most of my family believes that Catholics are going to Hell, so they are worried for my soul. I also think they believe I converted just for my husband's family. Is it hard on me that they feel this way? Yes, it is. We just avoid religious talks when possible.
 
Old 12-24-2011, 07:28 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psr13 View Post
She probably believes your damning yourself to Hell if you don't believe, which is why it's hard for her. That's the same reason it's such a problem for my family. Most of my family believes that Catholics are going to Hell, so they are worried for my soul. I also think they believe I converted just for my husband's family. Is it hard on me that they feel this way? Yes, it is. We just avoid religious talks when possible.
Seriously?? WHY?? What religion are they?

I would be disappointed if our kids did not practice some Christian faith but it certainly would not ruin a relationship with them. They all have a pretty strong faith right now and I can't see them not staying in the Catholic church but you never know.
 
Old 12-24-2011, 08:00 AM
Status: "Even better than okay" (set 19 days ago)
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
51,446 posts, read 50,689,166 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rezfreak View Post
I'm not meaning this to turn into any kind of debate.. but I have a question for you.

Say you raise your child in a certain religion (or lack there of) and later on in life your child turns to another religion (or none at all) that is different from how you raised him/her. Would you be disappointed? While I understand that everyone is entitled to their own beliefs, would you also be entitled to be a little sad and disappointed that they didn't continue the belief system you raised them as?
When my daughter was young, I brought her with me to an Episcopal church, which was a very different Christian environment than the one in which I was raised. Then I went through a period of time in which I wanted nothing to do with any form of organized religion, but she continued to go to a Sunday School at my mother's church, which was OK with me.

When she was 14, she started to date a boy whose father was the pastor of a fundamentalist/bible-worshipping type of church in town, which to me is a very harmful form of Christianity. My inner alarm system went off, but I didn't forbid her to go--I was hoping that I'd taught her enough by then to discern between spirituality and reason. In a way, it wasn't bad--while other kids her age were hanging out drinking in their parents basements, she and her youth group pals, most of whom were musicians, were writing really bad songs and playing them on their instruments down at the church hall.

I eventually returned to the Episcopal church, which, as I mentioned, follows the balance of spirituality and reason that I value.

My daughter broke up with the pastor's son in her first year of college. She has an interest in Buddhism and in the teachings of the Dalai Lama. That's fine with me. I am neither sad nor disappointed. I think I would be sad or disappointed if she did not pursue any spiritual life whatsoever, though. I don't believe there is only one "right" religion--I think all of our attempts at understanding God or the Universe or however you wish define whatever that thing is that humans are forever trying to grasp are cased in shadows, and all we can do is try to connect with it and follow our paths on our individual journeys. I do think that once we become convinced that ours is the only right way and try to convince others of the same, we are taking a giant step backward.
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