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My Scary Dilemma.

By Scaredy Kat ~

I was raised for my entire life in a strict Christian world. A world where outsiders are unwelcome and where Agnostics/Atheists are uneducated snobs who prey on the innocent and drag fervent Christian believers into the fiery pits of Hell.

And I was one of them; I "am" one of them. And that's my problem.

I am so afraid. I'm 17 and have the adventure of college ahead of me, and that should be liberating, right? College should be my chance to get away from my strict, Bible worshipping, anal nitpick family. But college isn't going to play that role for me. My parents have given me a deal or no deal situation to bear and I'm so afraid of the next 4 years of my life. This deal or no deal for me is: christian college, or no college at all.

I have been content with my disbelief in god since about...July. For the last 5 years, I have lived as a non-Christian while at school, and have behaved as a proper Christian daughter at church and at home. I thought I could keep up my "double life" until it was time for me to go to college, when I wouldn't have to hide from my reality any longer. But now it turns out I will not have any relief from my secrecy because I need college, and I need my parents' support to have it.

I am struggling with "coming out" to my parents. I want to believe that their promises of unconditional love for all these years are true, but I know them well enough to know that my untimely death would be better than my "spiritual death." What they don't realize is that I have a very spiritual life with my close, non-Christian friends, with nature, and with my body and mind. They are just so embedded with this Christian mindset that I know with all of my heart will not be so loving when they find out their perfect daughter has been nothing but a façade these last 5 years.

I have called Christian hotlines only to be spoon fed tried and true verses and techniques. I have delved through the pages of my Different Bibles (King James, NIV, NASB, Message). I have found nothing to ease my disbelief. The only thing that has provided solace for me in this difficult time of doubt has been the posts I found on this site. Can I make a joke and say it was a true "god-send"? But really. I broke down in tears when I read posts on this site. It was the first time that I felt people really understood, and without any contact, I felt loved and embraced.

I would really love all your support through this. Any advice from former Christians? Is anyone else trapped in the Church of Christ? How should I handle the broken hearts of my family members, my friends? How should I handle college? I wish things could be easier, but I feel like as my senior year draws to a close, everything's going to spiral out of control. Thank you for your support and advice. Please share your thoughts.

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