reply to post by mamabeth
Hello MamaBeth, what an excellent question.
I was raised as a Fundamentalist/Evangelical Christian when I was growing up. I remember as a child my burning curiosity to ask questions, and to
explore, everything as much as possible. I questioned my Mother incessantly about life, reality, and what we are doing here. She instilled in me from
birth a belief in God, and a love for Jesus Christ. She told me that God created us for his enjoyment, but that we had sinned in the Garden, so Jesus
had to be born to die for us so that we could be forgiven.
So at the age of 7 I recited the sinners prayer and gave my heart to Jesus.
Growing up, to help me to learn to read, my Mother had me read from the Book of Proverbs and the Book of Psalms. My family went to church every Sunday
for both services, every Wednesday for Bible study, and my siblings and I went to church on Thursday for the youth group.
As a child whose mind lacked the reasoning of that of an adult, I found that it was easy for me to simply accept what my Mother, Stepfather, and
community was teaching me. The reality of the Christian God was as self evident to me as the blue sky. I knew that if you did not accept Jesus as your
personal savior that you were going to go to hell.
I understood that Christ was returning to take up the church before the tribulation. I understood that the world was corrupt because of demonic
But, then puberty hit me.
When my sexuality began to develop is when I began to have problems. I could not cope with my new sexual urges at the age of 12 and 13, and the church
did not help whatsoever. They would split the boys and girls up at our preteen youth groups to discuss sexual matters, mostly just to tell us that we
have to wait until we get married to have sex...and especially to inform us that, no matter what, we needed to avoid masturbation like the plague.
So I started having nightmares about the rapture and hell. I had convinced myself that I was going to miss the rapture because my own sexual urges at
the time were too intense for me, especially at that age. I was still a child, and when a child has a need they want met they can be very
My fear of missing the rapture escalated to the point that I was utterly terrified to even ride in the car with my Mother or Stepfather, or anyone
that I deemed a "good Christian" in my mind. I had an intense phobia that Jesus was going to show up at any moment, and if I was in the backseat of
a car careening down the freeway at 65 mph when he happened to make his comeback...I knew that I would be SOL in an out-of-control-car with no
Somewhere amidst the anxiety I realized that Christianity was a farce. With my new-found perspective I would go to church and I realized that all
worship God because of the promise of paradise, that and if they don't they will be tortured for all of eternity.
Religion psychologically warps people. I know for a fact that I was indoctrinated as a child.
For example. if a politician rose to power and promised his followers the world, but tortured his opponents, we would rightfully call him a dictator.
His own followers would eventually realize that if they ever turned against their leader they would also be tortured. That is the same premise of the
God of Christianity.
That is also the same premise of an abusive relationship.
If God did not want human beings to have sex before they got married, then the sexual urge would not start until after
you tied the knot.
The fear, guilt, and shame that religion engenders in children...simply for being human, is very much so psychological and emotional abuse.