12/18/2011 | Share this article: View CommentsBy Ben ~
Well, It's kind of a long story but Ive been wanting to get this off my chest for awhile. I have tried to talk to friends and family about it but everybody thinks I am the person who is in the wrong.
I was raised in Washington state in a moderately christian household. We went to church based on how my father felt Sunday morning. It was my grandfather who even though he lived an hour away dictated almost every facet of our life. My dad got more religious when my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer when I was about 12 or 13. A condition she battles to this day, I am 25 now to put things in perspective. I can understand his new found glory and I do not blame him for anything. However my grandfather is the biggest bible thumping Jesus-freak ever. Like no joke, he is the guy in church with the shitty voice that sings louder than everybody else just to show he is more devoted to the lord than everybody else.
As far back as I can remember I never believed. My parents were always trying to please my grandfather because he helped them out when they were young. He has made a lifelong habit of gifting then using the opportunity to chastise when his children when they were not walking with the lord. By the way I hit Jesus up for a stroll on the beach the other day, that dick never gets back to me. I digress, since preschool I was forced to attend private christian schools, Baptist ones. The goddamn worst places on planet earth. I constantly was in disputes with my teachers because I hated them and I hated all the people around me that were buying into all the non-sense we were subjected to. Except for Mrs Hanson, third grade, she was an alright lady in my book. She use to pay me to catch frogs and tadpoles for some super important third grade research.
When I was young I used to cry myself to sleep at night because I could not feel Jesus in my heart. I was so scared of hell, and still am to this day. I was always told that if you ask him in just once he is always there. Well, I never felt him and used to pray fervently every single night over and over, asking Jesus to save my lost soul. Im talking from about age 5 to about 12. Every night, I am not kidding you,it was awful. On top of that I was forced to go to a christian school where the teachers would subject us to their two cents on the god theory. This went on til fourth grade then my parents sent me to the public school down the street but pulled me out after two years.
They sent me back to the school I attended before the public school. This is the point of my life where my non belief became an issue. Not for me but the people around me. The school is called Tacoma Baptist Schools and it was hell. There were several teachers that could tell I was not down for Jesus and they started to harass me. I was in 7th grade and made it to 8th grade before it all blew up. It was started in my history class. The teacher was the biggest ass wipe ever. She was proud of the fact she was saving her self for her future husband and took every opportunity to tell us about it. She was literally a 40 year old virgin. Anyways, in the class during the first 20 minutes or so we would do a mock government with elected officials. It was supposed to be in the students hand but naturally the strong grip of Christ was upon us and we were forced to pray and sing songs sometimes. When the super christian kids took control I broke my neck to become president. Once elected the first thing I did was I told everyone I was a dictator and they were under my complete control. The teacher said no way but I said lets vote on it. She agreed and my tactic was I told them that If they voted me in as a dictator I would stop making us pray and sing. That got me in but after a few days of not praying the teacher said I was no longer allowed to be in control anymore and shortly after My parents were called in the school for a meeting.
The meeting consisted of my parents and I, along with the principle, the history teacher, my English teacher, and the PE teacher for some reason. I did not know what they were going to say and was shocked when they told my parents a student had came to them and told them that I had going around to students and speaking blasphemy and was leading some sort of charge against Christ. I lost it and started to sob and just say you guys are lying and you know it, you know you guys are completely making this up. I was asked to go wait in the car and when my parents came out they said well your not going there anymore. They never said another word about it. And I spent the last three months of eighth grade skateboarding and shooting my guns in the the forest behind our house. It was pretty sweet, my brother was super jealous.
I was sent to public school where I finished my education. After the meeting I lost faith completely and struggled with doubt and fear of hell until I was about 20. On good days I could come to grips that I was tricked into trying to become a christian. I am very angry that Christians use fear tactics to trick children into believing and it makes me cry sometimes knowing that there are probably tons of little 5 year old kids crying themselves to sleep because they are scared of going to hell. It makes me livid at the same time. I want to not be angry but the fact that the people who had a hand in raising me are just as intelligent as I am, and they know what they are doing. They have the same fear of hell I was able to shed eventually, kind of. The reason I said the age of 20 because after I graduated high school I got heavily into hard drugs for almost two years.
After graduation my parents refused to pay for any secondary education or co-sign on any loans because my dad caught me smoking a stogy. A habit I have since quit. My parents kicked me out for this and I got a job and an apartment. I wasnt making enough money and my parents refused to help unless I joined the military. I began to sell ecstasy to support myself. I went a little overboard and some how I had a moment of clarity and talked to my parents and they let me move back home under the condition I joined the military and I went to church every Sunday with my grandparents and them. I had a brief moment of belief but lost it as soon as I went to basic training and realized that these guys were training me to kill and everybody says they are christian on their dog tags. I found the whole god thing silly once again.
Today I am still afraid of hell. I just hope Im right about it as we all are. But the fact that I never felt Jesus in my heart or felt compelled to lead a good life in the name of Christ, I feel fairly confident that I am right and will end up as worm food some day. I don't live in Washington because my family doeskin approve of my choices and constantly try to talk Jesus at me. I keep my visits with my grandparents under 30 minutes and when asked a loaded question I say "yeah, were not gonna talk about that" They constantly ask me if I found a church in California yet. I have had to tell them several times I don't attend church anymore and they act shocked every time and make me super uncomfortable. I feel uncomfortable being around them because they ask me things like "did you still smoke?" and things like that in front of my other family members as if that is a normal thing to, make people uncomfortable. My parents are getting super religious now, but they know talking god at me will just make me mad and we don't get to visit that often. In fact I made the choice to drive home for Christmas instead of flying because the vehicle I used to drive when I was home has given up the ghost and I refuse to be without car due to the fact that I might find myself stuck at a judgmental family members house and not be able to leave when the Jesus bullets start flying.
I am glad that I found this site, I have not found a person yet that feels the way I do about god and its pretty cool that I have the opportunity to get my story off my chest with out people getting mad at me for not believing in god. I look forward to reading more material on the site. Thank you for reading allowing me to share some things that needed to be shared.
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