Author Topic: My mom's faith  (Read 512 times)

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Offline GodlessHeathen

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My mom's faith
« on: March 04, 2012, 10:16:57 AM »
I'm posting this here, because it's not so much an argument as a rant.

My mom is dying of cancer. It has spread to her lungs, liver, bones, and probably other places as well. I asked my Mom's husband not to bring up God, Jesus, or Christianity around me at all when I'm visiting her, told him that I don't believe it, and I don't want to hear it. I said that I do not want to be preached to, and I do not want to be witnessed to! He him hawed around for a while as he is quite the Christian fanatic but finally agreed.

Last night, some retarded propaganda-filled show was on the history channel, full of "prophecies" from Nostradamus and Revelation that the narrators were trying desperately to link to current events, and Mom's husband just couldn't help himself. He began rambling to me, in front of Mom, about how prophecy was being fulfilled all around us (really "force" fulfilled just like the "this happened in order to fufill" bullshit we find in the New Testament). After that little spewing of nonsense, he proceeded to tell me, "Your mom and I are just (Bible Belt Christians always throw in the word, "just," somewhere) so disappointed and saddened that you walked away from Christ. What in the world made you decide to do that? It must have been a book by some atheist somewhere (as if that is just a horrible thing). All I can conclude is that you never had any faith in the first place (a classic and often-used fundamentalist cop-out)."

Given as he had slammed open the door, I proceeded to nail down every reason I could think of off the top of my head as to why I had left the Christian faith, literally slamming Christian doctrine at every turn. When he had a chance to speak again, he proceeded to tell me again how he and Mom are and said I should ask her what she believes. I told him I did not want to bother her with that, because she is bedfast with cancer and sometimes experiences a lot of pain. He then informed me that he used to have a lot of respect for me because I was so a strong believer at one time and that he didn't understand how I could just make a 90 degree turn like I did.

Well the whole thing upset Mom and made her sick at her stomach. And Mom's husband had the audacity to tell me "we probably shouldn't talk about that stuff in front of your mom anymore because it upsets her. She told me that was why she got sick." So I informed him that I had already asked him not to bring it up.

One wonders why do Christians have such selective hearing in instances like this? Not only did he bring up again the fundamentalist bullshit I didn't want to talk about, but he brought it up in front of my sick, dying Christian mother whose heart was broken when I walked away from faith! People set "witnessing" to the "unsaved" above anything else in importance and I'm tired of it!!!
"That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence" (Christopher Hitchens).

Offline Nick

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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2012, 10:37:50 AM »
Extremely bad timing.
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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2012, 10:39:43 AM »
Very sorry to hear about your mom.  And yes, this is an example of the relentlessly inconsiderate responses that atheists get to endure just for being atheist.  The Christian love oozes out of some people's pores.

Offline Traveler

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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2012, 10:48:29 AM »
I'm so very, very sorry for you mom's illness, and for her husband's inconsideration. I don't know what more you can do except be clear to her that you love her very much, and try to shut down any conversations with her husband in the future. I am a cancer survivor, and it breaks my heart to know that people are dying and in pain from these horrible disease. Hugs to you and your family, and I hope you can get through this without any further drama.
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Offline atheola

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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2012, 12:31:08 PM »
Sorry to hear about your mom..Mine died from brain cancer 20 years ago and it shook out whatever faith they ever had to expose the nonsense og it all.. Now my dad still claims there's "something out there", but that's as far as it goes.
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Offline Quesi

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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2012, 12:46:21 PM »
I wish you strength in the days and weeks and months to come.   I have lived through the death of both of my parents.  My dad died slowly, and my mom died suddenly.  Both types of death are hard in different ways.

I understand the pain that you are feeling for your mom, but I cannot comprehend the additional pain that your mom's husband is causing you.  All I can say is that he is mourning too.  There may be times, for your own sanity, that you will need to just walk out of the room.  I know you have asked him not to talk about his religion, but it appears he is not going to respect your request.

What matters now is the time that you spend with your mom at the end of her life.   Don't let her husband poison this time for you.

Has she taken part in planning the funeral?  I know that this is a super hard thing to ask of anyone, and some people have the strength to do it, while others don't.  Given that she is a Christian, you are going to have to put up with the Christian stuff, out of respect for her.  But it would be great if you had some guidance, so that there is less fighting with her husband over the services.

Does she have a favorite song she wants played?  Photos of herself and family she wants displayed?  Stories that she hopes will be included in her eulogy?  Do you know her favorite flowers?  Is she going to be buried or cremated?  If buried, does the color of the casket lining matter? Has she made plans for where she will be buried, or where her ashes will be scattered?  Does she have a will?  Do you know what she wants to happen to her wedding ring?  Her favorite coffee cup.  The pictures of your childhood?  The bank account and the IRA and the car are the time consuming things, but in my experience, it is the little, precious things that people's feelings get hurt over. 

Funerals are for the living, to help us find closure, and accept the death of a loved one, while honoring their lives.  They are also opportunities for families to come together and either support each other, or struggle against each other.  I hope that the tensions between you and her husband do not make the huge, painful transition in your life even harder. 

Offline thunderridge

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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2012, 06:57:02 PM »
GodlessHeathen
Quote
People set "witnessing" to the "unsaved" above anything else in importance and I'm tired of it!!!
 


These people think the most important thing in the world is where will you spend eternity? Why do they hold on to such myths?  I'm tired of it all as well.

Offline GodlessHeathen

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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2012, 06:50:56 AM »
Hi All,

Thanks for the words of encouragement and advice. You know, I think the hardest part about being an atheist during this time is that I have no one to be angry with. But I would much rather have truth than have an imaginary sky-daddy to gripe to.

Mom's husband is the type who simply cannot keep his mouth shut. I expect after I left his house last weekend, he began talking at Mom about my departing from "the faith" and upsetting her even further. The last thing I wanted to do was hurt her during this time, but unfortunately I can't help what he does when I am not there. I don't intend to try and shake her faith now and probably would not be able to even if I did try. The last thing she needs is a crisis of faith on her death bed.

To give credit where credit is due, her husband has taken very good care of her during this time. He sleeps in the recliner every night so he can be next to her in her hospital bed. And he works tirelessly to make sure she has everything she needs. So, as much as the guy drives me up the wall with his Christian ramblings, I do have to give him credit and respect for being a good husband to Mom.
"That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence" (Christopher Hitchens).

Offline freakygin

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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2012, 07:24:12 AM »
I'm very sorry to hear about your mom's condition.

But forgive me for asking this.
Is it possible that the real motive behind your mom's husband trying to make you believe again
Is actually because he believe if he succeed to make u become faithful to God again
Then he thinks maybe God will reward his effort with some kind of miracle i.e. healing your mom.
By "saving" your soul, he expect something in return.
Is it possible?

Because that kind of behaviour happened a lot in my country.
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Offline GodlessHeathen

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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2012, 07:41:58 AM »
I'm very sorry to hear about your mom's condition.

But forgive me for asking this.
Is it possible that the real motive behind your mom's husband trying to make you believe again
Is actually because he believe if he succeed to make u become faithful to God again
Then he thinks maybe God will reward his effort with some kind of miracle i.e. healing your mom.
By "saving" your soul, he expect something in return.
Is it possible?

Because that kind of behaviour happened a lot in my country.

Possibly, although I don't gather from his personality and past conversations he and I have had that that is his religious philosophy. He is fairly accepting that Mom is dying and is not really expecting a "healing" at this point, a place that most Christians I have known eventually reach when someone is at the point of death and "healing" never comes. He also comes from a Church of Christ background, a Christian sect that teaches that miracles (including healing) have "ceased" (a belief / cop-out that is very convenient to their faith).

I think it has more to do with that he thinks that saving souls is so important that it trumps everything else in importance. If he thinks he can save my soul, then that is more important to him even than how the whole thing makes Mom feel. I've given several of my Christian friends a good ass-chewing over that mindset over the last couple of months.
"That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence" (Christopher Hitchens).

Offline GodlessHeathen

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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2012, 08:55:25 PM »
On April 25, Mom died peacefully in her sleep. She was comatose the night before but did perceive what I and other family members were saying to her. I know this, because, when I or my aunt would tell her to cough to relieve fluid from her lungs, she would cough louder and harder in her sleep. The last thing she said to me when she was still conscious enough to speak (about a week before she became comatose) was "I love you." What an awesome last word for a person to say to you! Anyway, I find comfort in the fact that she is no longer suffering and does not have to worry about the cares of life anymore. And that, though I miss her greatly and feel like a part if myself has died with her, one day I will enjoy the same state of "oblivion" and will not have to watch a single other person I love die.
"That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence" (Christopher Hitchens).

Offline Nick

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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #11 on: May 03, 2012, 09:36:04 PM »
Thank you for sharing that with us.  Death is hard to watch but you seem to handle it with grace and dignity.  Your mom was lucky to have you with her.
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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #12 on: May 03, 2012, 09:47:53 PM »
...one day I will enjoy the same state of "oblivion" and will not have to watch a single other person I love die.

My bold.  It is interesting how easy it is for humans to project what they know, onto what they truly can never know.

Sorry to hear about your mom, but it sounds like it went as well as possible.

Offline Traveler

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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #13 on: May 03, 2012, 10:05:31 PM »
I'm so very sorry for your loss, and glad that she had the opportunity to tell you she loved you. That's very beautiful.
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Offline GodlessHeathen

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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2012, 07:58:30 PM »
...one day I will enjoy the same state of "oblivion" and will not have to watch a single other person I love die.

My bold.  It is interesting how easy it is for humans to project what they know, onto what they truly can never know.

True. Hence the reason I'm a self-described "agnostic" atheist. It's very difficult to find words to describe a state of simply ceasing to exist. From an atheistic standpoint, the dead do not "enjoy" anything; neither do they "suffer."

The same is true of what some refer to as "unintelligent design" - a term that describes the ability of natural selection to "shape" what features we see in different species of life. It is really not "design" at all, but the phrase is convenient, so people sometimes use it.
"That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence" (Christopher Hitchens).

Offline GodlessHeathen

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Re: My mom's faith
« Reply #15 on: May 10, 2012, 04:33:13 PM »
Thanks all for your encouragement and support. Don't know how I would have made it though this without the support of my family and friends (including my online friends). This is the most painful thing I have ever been through but at least I don't have to face it alone or look to the support of some distant sky-daddy.
"That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence" (Christopher Hitchens).