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Entry 47: Another hiatus ends

August 11, 2020

Hello,

I know it’s been another significant drought in terms of posts here on the TRC website.

Thanks for hanging in there with me.

Today, I want to share 2 things with you.

One, I’m working on a book based on this website.

I hope it may help some folks who are in similar situations to what I went through in my 20s, 30s, and now still going through in the twilight of my 40s.

More later on that.

Two, I want to share a letter I received recently, and my responses to that letter.

Let’s dive right in with the letter, shall we?

Original letter below:

> I just came across your website while searching ‘recover from conservative Christianity’. 
> 
> I am 28 years old and I have not gone to church in about 8 years. I was on and off what I call the salvation wagon for my entire teen years but kept going to church with my parents merely because going [sic probably meant to write ‘growing’] up in church, a Sunday morning service was so quick to me and routine that even though I didn’t believe it was comfort to them that I was going..

It took years for me to realize I needed to comfort myself and release myself from that obligation.

Embarrassingly, It’s only in the the past year I have been coming to terms with his damaging my upbringing was on me.

My lack of coping skills, guilt etc.. 
> 
> Have you found any help through books or have any suggestions for material I could find useful?

I’m finding there’s so much out there for every topic under the moon but I am not finding much for recovering from conservative Christianity and all the effects some people leave with.
> 
> If you have found anything useful I would greatly appreciate your suggestions.
> 
> From a friend a North border away

My first, in a deadline mode at work, response back to this nice person:

Hi,

Thank you for your email. I’m right in the middle of a tight deadline at work today. I will respond very soon though. Hang in there! In the meantime, please check out Bart Campolo’s ‘Humanize Me’ podcast. It’s excellent and his experience of recovery I think may help. I’ll be back in touch soon. Thank you for reaching out. 

TRC

Nice person’s response back to my 1st response:

I certainly will, I appreciate you getting back to me! 

And then finally, when work deadlines were somewhat met, this was my follow up response:

Hi,
Thanks again for reaching out. I haven’t been too good w/ keeping up that website and blog.
When I created it many moons ago, it was just a way for me to vent all my frustrations about my upbringing and all the pent up anger I had toward my parents and greater society.
I have since calmed down a bit from those days and now have a kinder, gentler view of conservative christianity and the people who follow that way of thinking.
In many ways I feel sorry for people who continue to live with the ominous specter of a God who would concern him/her/itself with every minutiae of my life and thought process.
I spent many a day having ‘What if I’m wrong and going to hell?!’  thoughts.
I am in a much better place now, but it took a while.
I would say the 1st podcasts I started listening to were Point of Inquiry and Freedom from Religion.
I listened to alot of Bill Maher and watched his movie, Religulous’.
I think I also read a book by Bart Ehrman (featured on one of the latest Humanize Me episodes from Bart Campolo) on the historical Jesus.
I also listened to alot of The Skeptics Guide to the Universe podcasts.
I basically just tried to get a good basis in logic and reasoning and science and tried to figure out why I had believed certain things for so long.
I read ‘The God Delusion’ by Richard Dawkins, and, while I liked it, I thought much of it was quite mean spirited.
I graduated to doing more meditation and focusing on being kind to those who were trying to get me back to church and believing in a God again.
Tara Brach’s podcasts really helped in this regard.
I hope this may help a bit.
Happy to keep the conversation going.
It’s always nice to connect with folks who are in the process of deconverting.
It’s definitely something to be kind to yourself with as it’s a long process of letting go of some rather serious “operating system” programming.
The good news is you’ve started the journey, and, for that, you should take a victory lap.
It’s not an easy journey to start.
It takes ALOT of effort to just stop going to church and stop with all the pre-programmed ways of thinking.
Happy to talk more.
Thanks again for reaching out.
I wish you all the best on this amazing journey of self-discovery.
Again, be kind and gentle with yourself as you go down this path.
It will be easy to beat yourself up.
Don’t let yourself do it.
You are special and deserve to find happiness in your brain with how you’ve arrived at this place in your life.
Walks, water, and willingness to learn in most circumstances will go a long way.
Wishing you all the best.
Sincerely,
TRC

And finally, one more follow up message from me:

Hi,

A friend from high school sent this Youtube video link to me a few weeks ago.
I had never seen it.
I think you might appreciate it.
I’m still getting through the video (it’s long, almost 2 hours!), but so far I’m really liking how this person is recounting his deconverting experience.
Hope you may find it helpful. 
Here’s the link:
https://youtu.be/1qbna6t1bzw
Kindest regards,
TRC
So that’s my correspondence with this nice person who shall remain nameless unless this person wants to reveal themselves in the comments below.

If you are the person who sent me these nice letters and are reading this now, please know that you’re not alone.

There are so many of us in the process of de-converting and recovering from Christianity.

We can all help each other get through.

I’ll be posting excerpts from my upcoming book soon.

As always, thanks for stopping by🙏

TRC

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