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Secret Mommy-hood Confession Saturday

The only time we talk about Jesus in this house is if we injure ourselves while stepping on a toy.

*This post is not up for debate. Please respect me and the people who comment

Chunky and I were already snuggled up warm in bed when Shawn entered the room with a cup of tea…ok it was beer…in his hand. It only took him 3 steps before the ball of his foot met the sharp ridges of the plastic army dude. He jumped back, moaned, and after he realized that this misstep caused a beer spilling carnage he yelled:

“JESUS!”

Of course I laughed hysterically.

Shawn hobbled to the bed as if he had been shot then hit with a baseball bat, wiped the beer off his face, and sat down next to Chunky.

“Daddy,” Chunky said, “Does Jesus love me?”

:::::record scratch::::::

Shawn’s head snapped in my direction and my eyes widened.

We don’t talk about religion.

Ever.

Sometimes I want to teach Chunky about God and Jesus…but mostly I don’t.

I have been; we have been through so much terrible stuff and each time I turned to Him for help and I felt that He wasn’t listening. 

When we needed Him the most, he wasn’t there.

So I got angry and pushed away.

And frankly, I haven’t looked back since.

Until that night.

“Daddy, does Jesus love me?”

I am Catholic.

Shawn is Anglican…which is like the Catholic church’s step-sister. They’re practically the same.

We got married in a Catholic Church.

 When we decided we wanted children, we wanted to raise them in the Catholic faith.

Chunky was baptized Catholic.

We are registering him into a Catholic school.

Yet, we aren’t teaching him anything about our faith.

We don’t pray with him.

We don’t take him to Church aside from the obligatory Christmas and Easter masses.

Chunky believes that “Father Christmas”, a.k.a Santa is the reason for the season.

When we put up the manger at Christmas, Chunky asked a million questions.

“Does Santa bring baby Jesus presents?”

“Did Baby Jesus ride on the reindeer?”

“Do we get cake on Jesus birthday?”

“Was Jesus a good boy or bad boy this year?”

“Can my army dudes play with Jesus? I think he’d like that.”

Army Dude chillin with Jesus

And “Where does Jesus live?”

And “Does Jesus watch us from the sky?”

I answered his questions but not once did I delve into what the season is really about. Our faith.

I do want Chunky to learn about religion.

I just don’t know where to start and honestly, my anger gets in the way 100% of the time.

That’s not fair to Chunky.

Chunky has the right to know about the faith that he was baptized into.

He also has the right to decide whether he believes in it or not…

…but he can’t make that choice when he doesn’t know about religion.

“Daddy, does Jesus love me?” he said.

“Of course he does.”

“Does Mommy love Jesus?”

“Momma, you can answer that one”, Shawn said.

“Ummm…well…I know that he loves you very much.”

“Yea. Jesus loves me a lot I think.”

***********

Without getting into a huge debate with each other, can we all get along and answer the following questions? Please note: I will delete and even turn the comments off if things start getting messy around here.

Do you teach your child about religion?

How do you teach them?

If you do not believe in God or religion, do you teach them about it anyways?

Have you been so angry with God that you turned away from your religion? Did that prevent you from teaching your child about it? Or do you still teach them?

Did you ever start believing again? And where did you start?

For the record, I do believe in God. I believe that He loves us all regardless of race, gender, sexual preference, and religious preference.

Don’t forget that you can also share your Secret Confessions! The link up is below! Snag the button on the right hand side.



96 Comments

  1. My little one is still too young to understand religion and all that it entails, but here’s what my parents did with my sister and I – they let *us* choose. We were steered towards the Anglican church by our uber-British grandmother, but beyond that, there was no interference from my parents.

    I started attending church when I was 7 with my best friend and I was the one who approached the minister about getting baptized at 8 and confirmed at 12. I was also the one who decided to leave the church when no one could answer my questions (mostly, ‘why does God do bad things to the people who believe in him?’).

    I don’t regret having gone to church and I don’t shun those who do… for the most part. If you enjoy your religion, fine… just don’t shove it in my face and try to force me to believe what you do. I plan on giving my little girl the same choices I had when I was a kid… and given that she’s already a stubborn, independent kid, I don’t think there’s anything else I could do.

    Good luck 🙂

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Stacey, I think that that’s fantastic what your parents did. They allowed you to choose.
      We want that for Chunky too. We both believe in God, we are just in limbo about religion if that makes sense.
      I’m very angry with God and that prevents me from really talking about Him with chunky.But if he asks questions we will answer.

  2. I am Catholic. Ryan is kind of Catholic (not confirmed.) We weren’t married in the church (gasp!) and only one of our kids is baptized. We plan on baptizing Dylan but haven’t “gotten around to it”. (He’s two.)

    Abbey goes to Catholic preschool, but we don’t really go to church or talk about religion in our house.

    I believe in God and (for the most part) think that it’s our responbility as parents to teach our kids about relgion to give them a springboard to make a decision later (when I say our, I mean my family, not the collective, societal “our”).

    Ryan doesn’t know if he believes in God. He is fairly anti-Catholic church, and I think his feelings on it have gotten stronger, which makes for some complicated decisions looming on the horizon.

    So basically, we are in a state of flux, which I could have said in one sentence. Sorry 🙂

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @angela, It is incredibly hard isn’t it?
      I believe in God. We both do. We believe that God wants us to love all regardless of religion, culture, race, etc and to be respectful and tolerrant. That’s how we are raising our son.
      We will answer questions but to sit down with him and talk about our faith…or lack of it…it’s hard.

  3. Mommakiss Mommakiss

    I think that you’re doing it exactly right with your kiddo. You aren’t telling him your anger, and you’ll let him learn on his own. I appreciate your choice.

    I’m Lutheran. Confirmed and all. My kids are baptized. We do more praying and God learning at home because I don’t believe you have to be in a church to pray. But we go to church too. Once in a while.

    I had my time away from god. When my brother died. I was pissed. And hated him. It took me a long time, but I finally realized He must have had His reasons. So we’re back to being friends.

    Now. Go play in the snow!

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Mommakiss, Exactly, i don’t believe that you need to go to church to be a good person.
      How did you go back? i mean I believe in him but I’m just so angry at him ya know.

  4. Wow . . . So much to think about. Great, honest post my friend . . . And anyone who would judge is not someone you need in your life. really, ok, let me step down from my soap box and just answer your questions.

    I was born and raised Catholic. (still don’t have a handle on that whole Catholic Guilt thing. . . Augh!) Went to Catholic grammar school . . . Regularly went to church . . . My parents were active in our church, so I was too. Somewhere along the ine, I lost sight of it. when two separate men were found to have sexually abused chidren in MY PARISH, I was angry. I was angry that our pastor did not talk about it to us (the children). I was confused . . . And really really angry. I realized that these people I was to turn to to and confess my sins to had plenty of their own sins to worry about. So, I slowly stepped away. As I got older, I was too ” busy” (which, quite frankly, makes me so angry with myself). But at some point, I became an adult, and didn’t agree with all that the church believed in.

    I can say that I have missed it in my life. I missed the unity. I see my daughters growing up in a different sort of faith environment that what I grew up in, and I wish they could have experienced some of the good things I experienced. So we are taking baby steps to solidify our position and our feelings about the church. I should probably explain . . . I never stepped away from GOD. Just the CHURCH. He always remained a VERY important part in my life, and I have made sure to teach my daughters about him since they were little.

    Honey, religion is so confusing, It’s hard to understand. even this week, as I sat in the parent Religious Ed session at our church, I started to question things that were being said. I guess that I can only take it one step at a time. Maybe start with a little childrns book about God for your son (I did that with my girls). Whatever you do . . . Make sure it is right for you and your family.

    Love you, my friend. Hugs.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Leanne (fromchaoscomeshappiness), That’s awful what your girls went through. That would have shaken me to the core.
      I too miss it. That unity is strong. But as I grew I began to question and then when things started to fall apart I got angry.
      I think that I don’t believe so much in my religion anymore but I do believe in God.
      I want to be able to teach Chunky about it, but I’m finding it so hard because I am so angry.

  5. ~~~Kimberly,

    Yes, Mr. Liverpool and I have brought our boys to church from the very beginning. I loved doing this as a family. And they were both baptized at a Luthern Church, although I do not consider myself ONE religion ( I am Christian) That’s all.

    I guess we planted the seed…and later, my boys will make their own decision about who GOD is, how they fit Him into their lives.

    For me, I’ve always believed. I remember thinking at a very young age, “What other reason are we here? Where will I go when I die?”

    Deep Shit.

    Seriously, without God, after Kay’s murder, I don’t know what I would have done…You know?

    You will find God at your own time. And then you will know the right thing to do for yourself and your family.

    Love you, K. xx

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @My Inner Chick, I think it’s amazing to me that you went through something so horrific that you still believe. I do, but at the same time I’m just so angry with him. Like how did you not be angry with Him? I hope that wasn’t a too personal question and if it is, don’t answer it.
      I want Chunky to believe in what he wants. But I also want to be able to talk to him freely about it when he asks questions but I’m having such a hard time of it.
      Thank you so much for commenting on this.
      xoxo from Canada 😉

  6. I believe in one God.

    As do my husband.

    I don’t talk about my religion much. As you know, people get very riled up and emotional when it comes to that topic. Especially when we’re of different faiths.

    And I’m not of the faith that many are.

    I don’t judge them, those who believe differently, and I hope we don’t get judged. But there’s so much anger between certain faiths, I dare not even go there on your comment section.

    I do know that my boys will be taught what they need to know in their faith, and be guided to hold strong to that.

    Kudos to you for ‘going there’ here!

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Alison@Mama Wants This, I won’t lie, I almost puked when I hit publish but everyone has been very respectful.
      I think it’s fantastic that you are teaching your boys about your faith.
      I want to teach Chunky but right now I’m so angry…I guess that is selfish eh?

  7. Our relationship with God has been tumultuous.

    Cort and I were both raised super strictly conservative Reformed Christians.

    I know more Bible trivia than anyone else in the whole world. I would kill on Jeopardy.

    I am not sure what made me start questioning it all other than I thought my parents were dumb for blindly believing something to the point that they thought all the stories in the Bible were real. It was like they believed in Santa or something to me. I mean, you tell your kids about Santa and Noah’s Ark, but they are not real. My parents thought that shiz was real.

    I just ignored it all. I felt there was a God and that was about it.

    Then Cort and I got married and his dad died.

    My husband never gets angry, but he held that grudge against God for taking his dad. And he was mad at his dad for believing so fully and truly to the very end because it seemed to us for the 8 months from diagnosis to death, God heard nothing. that he turned his back.

    And then our miscarriages started.

    I didn’t know WHAT to think and Cort was just mad.

    We only stepped into churches for funerals and weddings.

    I think the birth of Eddie started to turn us a little. And my depression made me beg to go back to church. I needed something. Even if it was just the human compassion of being greeted warmly as we came in to the sanctuary.

    Cort’s heart has softened and Eddie LOVES church and Jesus and everything, so we keep going.

    We teach Eddie that God is love and kindness and that he made us to be just like Him.

    And that is about all. I mean, he’s two. We haven’t really discussed any theological issues or anything. But we are going to keep going to church and if Eddie has questions or wants to explore other religions or denominations we will encourage and discuss.

    Ok…that is enough seriousness.

    I almost said, you ARE teaching him about God…you DO have a Chuck Norris cut-out, don’t you?

    Hallowed be the House O Norris.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Katie, Oh Chuck.
      No we are not teaching him anything which is why I wanted to post this.
      Of course when he asks we answer.
      We believe that God loves all of us regardless of what religion we come from…culture…sexual preference. That he wants us to be tolerrant and respectful…so we are raising Chase that way.
      I wish that I had a stronger faith but I’m just so angry with it.
      Perhaps time. I don’t know.
      Thank you so much for opening up your heart here friend. That means the world to me.

  8. Jenny Jenny

    I am catholic as is my dh. Both girls were baptized. We do not attend church as regularly as I like. My girls go to a Lutheran preschool/daycare. So we talk about god as questions are asked. We pray before meals but not always before bedtime. I spent last year trying to heal emotionally from the ppd & ppa. This year I plan on focusing on my spirituality & my physical wellness. We are thinking of sending the oldest to catholic school next year so we want to become more involved in our parish.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Jenny, I think that is great. I want to heal my spirituality as well. Not so much in the sense that I want to go back to religion, I just want a better connection with God.

  9. I was raised Catholic. My MIL was, but my husband wasn’t so much. I taught Catholic school for three years; one year I even taught religion.

    I lied to sixth graders. Well, I didn’t so much lie. I always said “The church teaches..” Which it does.

    But. I don’t know. We didn’t baptize BG. DH said it was up to me, since he doesn’t have a practiced faith, and I thought about it for a while. I knew it would make my mom and DH’s grandmother happy. But, I wasn’t prepared to go into a church and make another promise I had no intention of keeping. Last year was the first year I didn’t fast at Lent, too.

    I wonder why the guilt lasts so much longer than the faith.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @story, It is so incredibly hard isn’t it.
      I think we baptized him because that’s what our faith wants us to do…not neccessarily because that’s what we wanted to do…if that makes sense.
      I believe in God.
      I just don’t know about my religion. There are some things that I don’t agree with. I also don’t think that you need to go to church to be a good person.
      And the weird thing is…that you mentioned it…I do give up stuff for lent…weird eh?

  10. Great post. I wanna’ start by saying I love God, I love the Roman Catholic sacraments, it’s beauty and it reverence. I had a Pepere who wrote on Catholocism. My Memere was the militant slap-your-legs-cause-you-kneeling-wrong kind…but Pepere…oh I loved him, he just LOVED God…he LOVED Jesus…he venerated our mother Mary…from HIM I learned to adore God.

    Fast Forward:

    I am 18, newly sober/clean in therapy for deep issues…I reject the concept of God. I wander around spiritually for awhile til coming back to Christian-Judeo beleif systems. I become “born again” I raise my children loving God, knowing that Jesus, God, adore him…I feel guilty for loving the Roman Catholic church and its celebrations…as I grow to understand The Christs life, I sudenly understand why we did certain things in the church…I am so happy…but I am repulsed by much of what I see in the RC parishners (I wont even begin to discuss the preists etc, I have no issue with them, I was injured by Baptist who also injured other, Catholics just got caught….anyway) I finaly realized, I can love the Romn Catholic beleifs and not take on its failings. Other churchs have human failings too.

    Its funny you brought this up, I had two issues with people of ONE faith who dont know each other (ones a relative of mine) stop dealing with me when they realized I stil identify with and was raised in The RC church. You would think after the childhood stuff you would get used to it, but you never do. It hurts to be thought of as lower because of your religion…

    Anyway, my kids havent thought about going into the church and I pray about it but they all were raised around God. You see what I mean? Not one of my kids doubts that they are loved by God and know the door is open and He will always welcome them in His presence.

    I guess what Im suggesting with my novel here is, raise kids knowing the LOVE, the rest will fall into place. Pray for them, with them and God will take care of the rest.

    You are loved…

    PS My son Shawn Patricks first prayers was “Thank you God for pizza. Amen” He was 2. Samantha Lyndas first alone prayer was “Bless my Barbies and grow her hair back” Elizabeth Ane Prayed “I want an Ipod” (she was eleven when I finaly got her to pray)

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Chrissy, We are raising our son to be respectful of everyone regardless of who they are and what they believe in because we do believe that God loves all of us no matter what.
      But you just picked my mind when you said that “know thta the door is open and He will always welcome them in His presence”…just what I needed to hear.
      I think that we will answer his questions. I just don’t know if I’m ready to actually teach him because I am so at a loss with my faith. Perhaps time.
      PS. That is adorable…pizza….barbie hair!!

  11. Our Christian faith is at the core of our being. My first words to each of my girls were “we love you and we pray that you grow to learn about and loves Jesus with all your heart. Nothing else matters.” I don’t always live that way, but I believe it. Our church has a great Sunday School, and the older two go to Bible club on Sunday nights. I love hearing them learn their Bible verses. We teach them the Bible is true, every word, even though I cannot answer every question about my faith. I don’t know why bad things happen, but I do know they happen whether or not you believe in God, and I’d rather have teh comfort of Jesus and go through the tough, then slug through it on my own.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Charity, I do believe in God. I am just not sure about my religion if that makes sense. There are a lot of things about the Catholic faith that I don’t agree with but that doesn’t mean that I don’t believe that there is a God.
      I think that he loves us all no matter what we believe in. I took great comfort in God and knowing that He was there to protect me…but then the roof caved in and felt that He wasn’t listening.
      So I’m angry with him.
      I think that it’s great that you have a strong faith and that you’re teaching your girls. Maybe after I’m done being angry, I’ll be able to talk to him more about it.

  12. Smldada Smldada

    I am trying to find a medium, to answer questions without judgement, but it is hard. Our girls are 4 and 8 months.

    I was born catholic, baptized presby, raised Lutheran, and studied Jehovah’s witness when my mom converted when I was 12. I do not believe in organized religion. Dh was born and raised catholic. We worship at the church of the holy mattress and set foot in to actual churches for weddings and funerals.

    The 4 yo hasn’t been asking too many questions, mostly because it’s a non issue, it just doesn’t come up. When my grandma died in Sept, we did the whole 2 viewings, funeral home service, church service, graveside service. Well meaning relatives talked about god and angels with her. I am surprised in my grief I didn’t go apeshit on some of them.

    I hope that the girls always feel they can come to me with questions. I hope I can find the words for open answers that let them develop their own beliefs.

    Playing army man w Jesus. That is awesome. I bet the baby Jesus loved it!

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Smldada, You crack me up…holy mattress.
      I do believe in God, just not so much in religion…if that makes sense.
      I answer his questions but to sit down and talk to him about Jesus is so awkward…mostly because I’m angry and have no idea what I’m doing.
      My Dad says a lot of things like that, heaven…Jesus…he even said hell…jerk. But I don’t want to force anything on him. I want him to be able to chose what he wants to believe in.
      Which is kind of being a hypocrite since we are sending him to a Catholic church…oy!

  13. Isn’t this such a mind bender? My son up and asked me who made the earth the other day. I immediately wanted to say: God made the earth sweetie. But then thought about what my husband might want to teach him and what other kinds of questions this would raise in my 5 year old’s head that I didn’t want to answer. Can a 5 year old even understand Big Bang Theory? OY!

    I dodged the entire thing by distracting him with a TV show and had a talk with my husband about the whole thing later that evening. My husband is non-practicing Anglican and I was raised without any religion. What to say to our son when he asks these questions? We decided to say that God made the earth but also explain a little about the science behind it as well (enough for a 5 year old to comprehend anyway).

    Then we decided to take these questions on a case by case kind of method. Because honestly, we have no idea what we’re doing, but we want to make sure that our kids have some sort of understanding of everything so that they can decide for themselves when they are older. In other words, we are totally winging it! 😀

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Tawny, I’ve been doing a lot of that. It’s so hard to answer and talk about it when I am so lost in my faith.
      I do believe in God.
      And like you, I have no idea what I’m doing. I guess that comes with the territory of being a parent.

  14. I have tried so hard over my years to believe. Like you, I have been let down more times than I can count. We have a priest in the family. 2 of 3 of my kids are baptized into the Catholic religion. I have gone to church for “proof” of God’s existence. It doesn’t work for me. My kids believe what they want and we answer questions according to what we were taught. When they ask do we believe in God, we’re honest, NO. I will never stop my kid’s from believing what they want, I will encourage them in fact. I will never push. In the case of my toddler who is a smigde younger than Chunky, I will handle it just as you have. Army dudes and all.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Pamela Gold, I do believe in God. I’m pissed with Him. I just don’t neccessarily belief in my religion. There are things in the Catholic faith that I don’t agree with and it was really put to the test when I started going through this illness.
      In truthfullness when my Dad and other famiy members attended church, they would pray for me in the morning “intentions” and that pissed me the fuck off. (Now I realize that was stupid)
      I believe that you don’t have to go to church to be a good person. I know of people who go to church and they’re horrible people.
      I will never push either and I will answer question when asked but to sit down and talk with him about it is so hard. I don’t think that I can. Right now, I don’t want to.

  15. I do teach my kids about God, but more in a “God is a feeling inside you” kind of way. Kind of a guardian angel thing. I also teach them about Jesus, in a historical context. But we do not go to church. I was brought up Lutheran, but I don’t identify with it. My husband is Catholic – this caused a minor sensation in my family – my grandma was shocked.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Nicole, Ha…Shawn being anglican…which is practically the same thing…sent my Dad into a tizzy.
      We are teaching Chunky that God loves everyone regardless of who they are or what they believe in. But bringing up Jesus…I just don’t know.

  16. liz liz

    I’m Catholic and Craig is nothing. We don’t go to church (even though we live in the Bible Belt) though both girls were baptized Catholic.

    I feel ya.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @liz, It is so incredibly hard. And you’re in the bible belt? I am Canadian…duh..and have heard that in the bible belt, religion is crammed in your throat. Is that hard to be living there and not conforming to going to church…if you mind me asking…

  17. Janet Janet

    My “kid” is an adult now, but when he was small, we raised him with very simple affirmations, that God (and Jesus) loved him very much – that he would be forgiven anything by God if he was remorseful, so he shouldn’t worry about making mistakes, because God is forgiving, always – I also spoke a lot to him about Mary, the mother of Jesus, because I wanted my son to have a sense of maternal love coming from a transcendent source – and because I myself love her.

    I think that kids learn best about God by observing their parents behaving lovingly towards each other and towards them. Notice I wrote “God” and not “religion”, because I think parents can get caught up in trying to convey religious beliefs to their kids that they don’t quite believe themselves, even though they are great at modeling love to their kids and thus showing their kids, through that love, Who God is.

    It’s obvious from what you wrote about the questions Chunky is asking about God that he has a real drive towards Him, and a need to know about Him. This doesn’t mean you have to teach him things you don’t believe. It seems to me that you are already telling him that God loves him, which is the most important truth you can convey to him about God, so I wouldn’t worry about Catholic dogma or following strict rules – but that’s me.

    As far as being angry with God, I have observed over the years, including years of intense struggle with suffering, that God has our best interests at heart, even though we often don’t understand why He allows us to suffer. I believe that we don’t see “the big picture”, while He does, so He allows suffering in our lives to cause the changes in our personalities which will lead us closer to Him, paradoxical as that may seem. I know that I would not have developed the qualities I have today, as an older woman, if I did not go through the suffering I went through after my son was born, and at other times as well. So I’m not saying it all wasn’t incredibly frustrating and terrifying to go through the pain, but I was able to trust God and not be angry – there was a lot of grace flowing around during those years of pain, which allowed me to trust Him.

    In answer to your question about a period of not believing -I go through periods of being skeptical about the Catholic Church, and need to stay away from Mass for periods of time, but inevitably I return. So I would say that I go though times of not believing in RELIGION, and religious systems, but I always believe in God.

    My son is 31 now, and is living a rather marginal life, which worries me tremendously – but he still has a deep faith in God, and attends church services regularly, and e-mails me a lot about spirituality – so although there is no guarantee that raising your kid to believe in God will cause him to have the things the world values, I believe that honestly conveying to your child what you believe, and especially telling him or her about the love of God, and His reality, will stay with the child – which is, of course, what really matters.

    Sorry if this is too long or too preachy – but it is a very intense topic, which obviously I have a lot to write about!

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Janet, No worries at all, you have given me so much to think about.
      I do believe in God. I believe that he loves us all no matter what we believe in.
      I too try to remember that there is a whole big picture behind what is happening. I think of things like “If I didn’t have PPD I wouldn’t have known how strong I really am” and so on…but at times I think “Perhaps it wasn’t God that helped pull me through. It was me”
      I will answer all of Chunky’s questions but I just can’t sit down with him and talk freely about it. It’s awkward for me right now when I am so lost about my faith.
      I want him to choose in whatever he wants to believe in.
      We are raising him to be respectful of everyone regardless of gender, race, culture, sexual preference and so on and I think that’s what God wants us to be like. To love everyone.
      Thank you so much Janet for opening up your heart here and giving me so much to think about. Great perspective1

  18. jen jen

    I always considered myself a person of strong faith. But when bad things happen when devastation smacked me in the face it shook my faith to its core; made me mad, disappointed, i felt the victim. And I blamed God.

    I totally understand wanting comfort from God, wanting to be saved from the pain and not feeling Him in my life. Not getting the relief I so wanted and needed from the bazillion prayers I said.

    I raised my kids in the church-Catholic. And although my husband wasn’t Catholic we agreed I’d take charge of their religious upbringing; and I did.

    But if what happened to me happened when my kids were little, I can see myself doing the same thing feeling the same way. I totally understand!

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @jen, I don’t know if I blame God for the things that happened in my life but I am angry. Perhaps I didn’t know what to expect when I prayed for strength and comfort and yadda yadda…well I expected those things…duh but I don’t know.
      I want to be able to answer any questions that Chunky has but to sit down and talk to him about it is a whole other issue. I just don’t think that I can at this moment. I feel completely lost with my faith right now.

  19. Laura M. Laura M.

    My little one is only 13 months so not old enough yet, but I am a Christian and plan on teaching her about Jesus.

    I plan on teach her by example like praying with her, taking her to church regularly, teaching her to love all no matter what, etc.

    Yes I have been so anger that I turned from God, but that was before I had a child. Yes I started believing again. How, I don’t know maybe time and trying to understand why I was put in that situation.

    Feel free to email me if you would like to talk.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Laura M., I am thinking that I just need time away. It’s not that I don’t believe in God, it’s just that I am very angry with him and I am questioning my religion.
      I would really like to talk to my son about our faith but I’m finding it so incredibly hard. When he asks questions, I will answer them, but I can’t talk to him about it because my anger is getting in the way….kind of selfish when you think about it.
      Thank you so much for your input!! I really appreciate it

  20. Hmm, you are giving me food for thoughts, but I think you are doing very well the way you are raising Chunky.
    I grew up as a member of the Swiss Protestant Church in our district, but now, years later, I’d rather call myself a Pantheist. My Hubs was raised as a Catholic, but never goes to church. We didn’t baptize ‘Timan’.
    I am trying to keep my sons mind open, I want to tell him about different religions, I would like him to make his own decision when he’s able to understand the differences. But I figured as a child you don’t like to be different then the other children and of course we do Christmas. This year I started to explain him the story behind it, in a way a 3 year old can understand.
    I don’t want my son to be pushed into a certain believe, not by his school nor by his peers, neither by his family. I’m just trying to show him the possibilities, also show him the pros and cons.
    I’m sure you and Shawn are fining a way that works for all of you.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Karin @Mommy’s Paradise, Thank you so much for your input!! chunky will be attending a Catholic church so I knkow that he will be learning far more about religion than we have ever taught him. He’ll have questions and I will answer them but to actually “talk” to him about it, I just don’t know…because I am so lost with it.

  21. we are not religious and i don’t plan to teach louise any sort of religion, but if she’s curious or has any questions i will always answer them and encourage any learning.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @katery, I think that’s fabulous that you will encourage and support them. I grew up with Jesus shoved down my throat. I didn’t mind because that was what I believed in but in my 20’s I started to push away because there were things that I didn’t agree with. But I too will encourage my son and support him with whatever he chooses to believe in.

  22. First off, thank you SO much for the beyond lovely comment you left on my blog. *blush*
    I, too, am Catholic. Hubby is as well. Neither of us was raised going to church…more so traditional vs religious if you will.
    Both of my older children go to Catholic school and as such, take religious studies at school. Have had their First Comm…blah, blah. That said, we don’t teach them anything further at home.
    I haven’t “turned away” from the faith but have definitely questioned much of what I’ve learned over the years. Just haven’t been inclined to learn anything different as it relates to another faith.
    We’ll continue to hold the traditions we were raised with and call it a {catholic} day.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Susan, Thank you so much Susan for your input! I want to be able to teach him when the questions come and I won’t lie, I’m nervous about him going to a Catholic school because I know there will be more questions. I can answer them but I don’t know if I can really get into talking about it (if that makes sense).
      I want him to be able to choose whatever he wants to believe in as I do believe that God loves us all regardless of our beliefs.

  23. I was raised with religion. My husband wasn’t. I raised my kids in my religion, but when they became adults they all left it. I have too. I too, won’t believe that he hears me. I like what my daughter has decided to do. If her kids want to learn about religion, they can wait until they are 18 and then decide for themselves what religion they want to be. I feel as if we teach our children to love one another, not be judgemental, and always try to do good, than that is what it is all about.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Dazee Dreamer, I think that it is fantastic that you let them decide. For me, my parents crammed Jesus so far down my throat…and at the time, I believed with my entire being. But then I grew and my beliefs changed. There are things that the catholic faith wants us to stand against that I don’t agree with.
      I believe in God.
      I’m just pissed at him.
      I just hope that Chunky grows up being a good person. One that respects everyone’s choices to believe in what they want to.
      I want to be able to teach him about our religion but I’m having such a hard time because I feel completely lost from it.

  24. I’m Jewish and my husband is Catholic. We celebrate all holidays for both religions, but we don’t teach much religion in our house. When the kids ask questions, we answer the best we can.

    I grew up in an interfaith family too and my parents did the same thing. They gave us information as we asked and then as we got older we were able to choose which religion we wanted, if any.

    My husband and I are doing the same for our kids too. I’d rather them know where our families came from, and give them the option of choosing religion how they want to.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Kimberly, I absolutely love that. I love that you are giving them all perspectives and giving them a choice. I really believe that no religion is right or wrong. I do believe that God loves us all regardless.
      Can I ask… Do you find that because both religions are not the same that it creates conflict? Maybe that’s not the right word…like does it confuse them? I think that them knowing about all religions would make them more tolerrant. That’s what I want for Chase, is for him to be tolerrant and respectful of everyone’s decisions even if they don’t believe what he believes in.

  25. Kande Kande

    My oldest learned about religion from her babysitter. We started going to their church (it was a small church, the kind of community church that operates when no funding yet for actual church building church). I was skeptical at first, but did surprisingly enjoy going. There were a couple of tense moments when the sermon or small group talk was about something that clashed with my personal beliefs. I am a weirdo when it comes to religion as don’t really put my faith in something that is fabricated by man/woman – albeit, it may not have started out that way, but I do feel that is where it lies now. But I also think there are lots of great things about religion, that the twistd are few and that the people there genuinely are trying to lead a better life. So didn’t want to throw the baby out with the bathwater so to speak. But was also very firm and clear that I would never tolerate my daughter being taught intolerance, either directly or indirectly. At first it as easy because it’s not like kids church for little kids delves into anything deeper than Noah. But aspects came up where I could see complications and conflicts arising. I tried to balance being respectful of the environment I was in with refusing to be a hypocrit. I don’t care, for example, if someone is gay. I don’t see that as any of my business. I would not get up and preach a sermon on how it is fine, as I am not the minister and that is not what the congregation is there for. But I would also not sit and listen to a sermon that talked about how they disagree with homosexuality, that is not what I (emphasized) am there for. I am there for me, to help make me a better person, not to fix others (real or not) sins. And that is why I did like the sermons when I did go, because they seemed to be very focused on exactly that, ways to better ourselves. And I was always very open and clear about my personal beliefs with the minister and also with my own kid. I think, in the end, that is the way it should be. Figure out why you are going, if it is improving you and your family, and never compromise who you are. Our kids will always have questions, and that is good. But I do agree to explain and expose them to different points of view, as of course if you dn’t expose them to religion at all they can’t make an informed choice. So why do I not go now? For a few reasons – some but not all include my second child would not go to kids church so I was spending too much time wandering the halls to settle her so getting nothing from the sermon. There was a bit too much emphasis on funding – I do NOT agree with 10% tithing! My family was having less time together and the inevitable 3hours church takes Sunday morning, most of which we are separated for was eating into precious family time. My eldest is a naturally good soul who could have been raised by wolves and still been the kindest person you could hope to meet – church or no church! My youngest is a different story but I will cross that bridge when I come to it. I really am not worried because I raise them to be good, to be kind, to value family, to value friends, to value themselves. If religion contributs to those traits then great, if it conflicts then I hope they have the intelligence and inherit kindness to realize that. To realize that to believe in God is not the same as attending church. To realize there is no place for judgement in a loving world created by a loving God. And to spend their time figuring out how to better themselves is time much better spent than by judging and criticizing others. Good luck!!!

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Kande, Believing in God is not the same as attending church…yes, exactly that. I know of people who attend church and are horrible people. I know of people who don’t go and are the most kind souls this world has ever seen.
      But you had me thinking when you said “Figure out why you are going”…Why am I going? For me, it was about praising God and being with community. There was a sense of security in that. Belonging. But there are things in my religion that I did not agree with. Like you said sexual preference. I think a person has the right to love who they want to love.
      I do believe in God. I believe that he loves us all. I don’t believe that a single man (Jesus) is the sole gatekeeper to get you into heaven.
      Your comment has given me so much to think about. Really. Thank you so much for taking the time to open your heart out here. I really appreciate it!

  26. I’m with you here, so so much. We think about this a lot. We believe, like you, that our kids have the right to decide what they believe and practice and do. We don’t want anyone telling them what to believe. So right now? They have no religious teaching – no synagogue or church or prayer. We revisit this often and cross our fingers that this “fuzzy” path will work out for us all.

    {Hang in there, Mama. I absolutely love that you put this out there!}

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Galit Breen, Yes it is definitely a fuzzy path. In all truthfullness, I do want to believe. I do believe in God but I’m questioning my religion. There are certain things that they stand against that I don’t agree with.
      And then there is that intense anger.
      I want to be able to talk freely with my son about the religion he was baptized into but right now it is so extremely difficult because of the anger. I will answer his questions but right now I can’t talk to him about it.
      Sorry for the ramble!

  27. Lindsay Lindsay

    My blog/twitter crush on you grows with every post. Careful, I’m about to ramble.

    I grew up a “Christmas and Easter” kid, even though I attended Catholic school for nine years. My parents allowed me to choose my path after I completed the standard school-conducted sacraments. I switched to a public magnet school after eighth grade. I chose not to be confirmed in high school, but when I decided I wanted to go that route years later, my nine years of Catholic education counted for nothing, and I would have to start from scratch. I still haven’t been confirmed. Drake is full on Catholic, but his family let him choose his path as well.

    We married in a Catholic church, and we attended church occasionally before I got pregnant. Once I got pregnant, I felt a little more drawn back to church, and we started attending more frequently. B was Baptized there, and will most likely attend Catholic school (because that is the nature of the school system down here). We have slacked off on church again, but are trying to get back into it.

    We say prayers every night. I have noticed that my prayers of late are the polar opposite of what they used to be- I now find myself saying “thank you for __” each night, instead of the pleas I used to send up. I guess I’ve learned, without realizing, how blessed I have been, even though I couldn’t always see it.

    I’m still not sure how we are going to approach it fully with B, but it’s going to be there, I hope. When I attended college out of state in the bible belt, I was honestly shocked at how my views on religion were handled. I came away wondering what good all of that hypocrisy was doing for anyone. I still wonder, but to each his own, I guess. What it comes down to is that none of us really know. But then again, that’s the whole point of faith, right?

    Whatever you choose to do will be right for your family. And I’ll be here to back you up.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Lindsay, I think that having faith in something is tremendously powerful. I remember growing up and knowing that God and Jesus were with me at all times and I wholeheartedly believed in that.
      In my 20’s I started to question things about my faith because there were certain things that my faith wanted me to stand against.
      I truly believe that God loves all no matter what religion we believe in.
      I have pushed myself farther and farther away from God because of all that I have been through. I know that everyone has their fair share of problems.
      I want my son to be a good person. I want him to respect all people regardless of race, religion, gender, culture, sexual preference etc. I want him to be able to choose freely in what he wants to believe in and I want to be able to help educate him in the faith that he was baptized into…but I find it so so so incredibly hard because there is such a bad taste in my mouth.
      I hope that makes sense 😉
      Thank you so much for commenting and giving me wonderful insight!

  28. My husband and I were both raised in fairly stringent, Christian environments, but I’d categorize us both as agnostic now. But, still, I think about the religion aspect quite a bit. Mainly because she’s starting to hear things from friends and family members, and I want to make sure she’s getting the whole picture.

    The biggest thing for me is making sure my kids make educated, informed choices. We aren’t raising our kids in a religious environment, but I would still like them to be exposed to many different kinds of religions, so they can make their own choice of what to believe when they get older.

    I absolutely love that you put this out there, Kimberly! You really made me think.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Booyah’s Momma, Thank you so much for your input. I too was raised in a very Catholic household. I started to push away in my 20’s because there were certain things that I didn’t agree with that the Catholic religion was against.
      Then the whole crazy back injury and mental illness and so on that happened that made me question if God was even listening. I know that everyone has their fair share of problems but those years for us? Were so terrible.
      I want my son to grow up to be a good person. Respectful of everyone regardless of race, gender, sexual preference. I want him to be open minded and I want him to be able to choose what he believes in.
      I’ll love him no matter what he decides.
      I’m just having such a hard time being able to convey what God and Jesus are really about. I don’t know how to explain it to him when I feel so lost.
      Does that make any sense?

  29. This may be off topic, but friends don’t make friends sit through a Catholic wedding.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Poppy, Well if it makes you happy to know, ours was a semi Catholic wedding because my husband was anglican. The priest wouldn’t allow him to receive the host so we just had the wedding part of it. So na na na na.

  30. This is a topic I think about ALL the time. My husband is catholic but doesn;t practice. I am not christian and hate the dogma of most organized religions. I’ve culled different things from different religions over the years like a spiritual buffet.

    I don’t want to decide for my kids. I want them to have the freedom I have to believe what I want to. Even if it’s Christianity (it made me capitalize that…huh.)My five year old found some religious cartoon on netflix about baby jesus etc. I explained to her that some people think it’s a story and some people believe it’s real. She said she believes angels are real. And all I said was “maybe they are..nobody really knows.” She also believes that Santa is the reason for the season.

    My kids weren’t baptized although my mother-in-law wanted it. I HATE the concept of having to wash away a babies sin, babies are the only true non-sinners.

    So yeah I could go on and on about this one. It’s one I have debated in my head a LOT. But I really don’t begrudge anyone else there faith, it’s a personal decision.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Anastasia, Yes, you are right. It’s a choice and it shouldn’t be up for debate.
      I believe in God however I’m just not buying into my Catholic faith. There are a lot of things that I don’t agree with that they want me to stand against like gay marriage.
      I think that God loves us all.
      I just want my son to be a good person and to make his own choices regarding what he believes in. I also want to be able to teach him if he wants to learn about Jesus. But I’m having such a hard time.

  31. My husband and I are born again Christians, we met each other in church, married in church. For years we went to church Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays.
    We were pretty active members, I was on the praise team, in the choir, teached Sundayschool and everything.
    My kids know the bible inside out. We pray before we eat, before they go to sleep and when they have a bad dream, we sit with them and pray.
    However, my faith has gone through many, many phases. I ashamed to say that there was a time that I was the kind of judgy know it all Christian. I didn’t mean to judge, but I just did. Me and my family have gone through so much and also has my faith. I still believe in God, I’ve been trough things I am sure I would have never survived. I’m still standing and I feel that’s because of some inner strength that he gave me. But I’m not going to church right now.
    I found out that God is not as demanding as I thought, I can be mad at him and he understands I can not want to have anything to do with him and he understand. And I have changed, I am not judgmental any more. I realize that I don’t have all the answers. Not at all. Anyone can choose to live their lives the way they want. Even God agrees with me on that, that’s why he gave us the right to choose.
    And that is what I teach my children, to respect everyone’s choices even if they aren’t the same as ours. They’re just as valuable. And that God loves them no matter what.
    xoxo

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Mirjam, Yes, I think that God loves us all no matter what religion (or not) we believe in. I just don’t believe that I need to believe in Jesus in order to get into heaven. I used to believe that but I started questioning my faith. And I got angry.
      And pushed away.
      It’s just so hard to discuss religion with Chase because I have a hard time with it myself. I feel lost. I want to teach him but I just have an awful taste in my mouth.
      I really wish that I could get back into it. Maybe I will.
      xoxo

  32. Krista Krista

    I completely understand where you are coming from. The last 6 years of my life have been so unbelievably painful. If I were to list it out, this comment would be WAY too long, but I will throw in there that I had ppd ocd/anxiety and had a breakdown. Lived with my parents for 3 1/2 months because I couldn’t take care of my daughter. The pain of that season is still so raw and hard to talk about. I started a blog last year, but was never able to get around to talking about my breakdown. It was hell. I mean, these mood disorders come straight from hell.

    I was raised by a christian family…not just church going parents, but actual walk the walk and talk the talk type parents. I grew up being taught that Jesus is the way, the truth and the life and no one comes to God except through Jesus. It wasn’t shoved down my throat, it was lived out before me by my parents…I also won’t get into how many painful things happened in my childhood…I may write about it in my blog someday. But through it all, my parents stood firm in their faith. they were an incredible example.

    When I had my breakdown, I wasn’t sure I believed in God anymore. Was he there? All the things I had fundamentally believed I began to question. I was living in HELL! Where the hell was God??? How the hell could he let this happen to me if he really was there? Didn’t he see me crying on my floor, broken beyond belief? Didn’t he hear my wails of pain, begging for the pain to end? Why?? Why wasn’t he answering me? It didn’t make sense.

    Then there was the little voice of my daughter. “it’s ok mama, Jesus will make you all better”… Oh baby, if only my faith were that pure and simple.

    I fought with everything in me. I put a stake in the ground and refused to not believe in God, because deep down inside, I knew he was there. Do you have a bible? This may sound crazy, and you may have read it already, but read the book of Job. And read it all the way to the end. I was shocked it how much I could relate to job. And then when God spoke to him, I felt like he was speaking to me. I don’t understand why all these horrible things happen to us, but I do believe in God, and he says in the bible that we live in a world full of sin. Sin is why there is pain. Jesus died not so that we would have a pain free life now, but that we would have hope that this isn’t all there is in life. We have the hope of one day being completely healed if we believe in him.

    I relate so much to you kim and I love that you are so honest. A lot of people aren’t going to like what I just posted, but please think about it. I have been where you are. I really truly have.

    Anyways, I teach my kiddo about jesus. Not because I have to, but because it is the truth. Some things we just can understand right now. I believe there is a much bigger picture to the reason of our pain. Keep us posted on what you decide to do 🙂

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Krista, Thank you so so much Krista for your input. I totally get where you are coming from.
      I do believe that there is a God but my faith as a Catholic is definitely what I am questioning. There are somethings about the Catholic church that I don’t agree with. I believe that God loves all of us despite what religion we believe in.
      I won’t lie and say that I don’t get jealous when i hear people talk so passionately about their faith. I just can’t get into it and I know it’s because I am so angry.
      I know that my son will have a lot of questions especially when he starts school. I’m just having such a hard time explaining things to him when I am so lost.
      I will definitely look at Job in the bible.
      Again thank you so much for your honest comment.
      PS what is your blog??

  33. Great questions. I completely understand where you are coming from. I am a bible believing Christian as is my husband. We teach our children what we know and go to church when we can.

    I grew up in a christian household and was made to go to church every sunday and wednesday. I believed in God because my parents told me to. Then I became a teen and rebelled. I didnt want to believe just because they told me to. I became an agnostic and started looking for a way to live my life the way I wanted.

    Then after many and I mean MANY problems (physically and emotionally), I looked up and asked: Why should I believe in you when you allowed all this to happen to me? And he answered. In a way I never thought possible. And I believed. And now? Going through this PPD/PPA? I have had many times where I asked God where He was and why wasnt he answering me. But I kept praying. I kept praying and believing He was there even when it seemed like He wasn’t. And I will continue to even when it seems God isnt answering. Why? Cause I remembered that poem. Footprints. Wait. Lemme find the link to it.

    While I could go on about how you need to teach chunky about Jesus because he is the only way to heaven, he needs and you need to understand why you need to believe.

    I teach my children and take them to church when my anxiety doesnt get the best of me, and I pray they choose the right path. But they need to choose it. They need to understand why Jesus is Lord and Saviour. They need to understand why the only way to heaven is accepting Jesus into their heart. Not because I said so.

    I love you and will keep on praying for you my fellow ninja. Hope you are kicking that gallbladders butt.

    Here is the link to the poem: http://www.footprints-inthe-sand.com/index.php?page=Poem/Poem.php

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @imperfectmomma, Sweetie, thank you so much for your input and sharing this.
      I think that my anger over the things that happened really pushes me farther away from what I had believed in.
      I believe in God.
      I believe that he loves every single one of us regardless what religion we come from.
      I want to teach my son about religion but it’s so hard when there is a bad taste in my mouth ya know?
      When I went to church at Christmas, my stomach twisted and knotted.
      Maybe I just need time away to think.
      Again, thank you so much for your input.
      xoxo

  34. Oh Kim,

    How funny that I wake up on The Lord’s Day, Sunday, to this post. Honey. You and I? We are one. I was raised in a Pentecostal church, mostly went because of my grandma and great-grandma. Both of those women are the Bible-beating type. You MUST go to church, you MUST believe in God, you MUST read the bible. I was the only one of my siblings that went to church until my younger brother was born, then he went too. My mom never went unless someone died and occasionally on Easter and the same went for my Dad. I think I went every weekend til I got to high school then decided that I didn’t really want to go.

    I went to a Catholic college, not for the religion, but for the scholarship. Realized how different Catholicism was from the religion I was raised in, but learned to love so much about it. Fast Forward to when I met my soon-to-be husband, I was comfortable in my faith. He was iffy, we started going to a non-denominational church together since he was raised Catholic and I wasn’t. We loved that for a while til the church started getting in our business and really judging us for our choice to live together before marriage, then telling us how awful of people we were. We really started to pull back.

    Then came the “clinical depression” and one medication after the other. Then the miscarriages, then being unemployed for almost 2 years… And the list goes on. I believe in God, for sure. I think he is my savior, but I don’t talk to Pea about him. Ever. Not on purpose, I just don’t think I’m in that place. I have so many questions for Him and no answers… She’ll know who he is and decide on her own how to go about her faith.

    xoxo

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Dawana, I needed this friend. I too had my Catholic religion jammed in my throat. As I grew older, I started to sway away from it, only because some of the things that they wanted us to believe in (such as they were against sexual preference) I was against. But I still went.
      Then the roof started to cave in. I prayed like mad. I prayed for pain control…I prayed for others, yet I still expereinced suffering and my fellow men and women suffered…I just don’t get it.
      I do believe in a God.
      Just not in religion if that makes sense. I’m finding it so hard to discuss this with my son.

  35. I think that religion is something to teach my setting an example – and that goes for whatever one believes in! I think that it’s important to make sure your kids are good people…and that doesn’t always come easy – religion or not!

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Ameena, Perfect. I do believe that being a good person is what matters. I know people who go to church and are horrible people. I want my son to be a good person. I think that we are doing a really good job at teaching him to be respectful of all people…race, religion, sexual preference…that’s important to us.

  36. Hi Kimberly An amazing post. And I agree with you for warning about debate because you’d surely get one if you didn’t. Not from me, but still….

    Both my boys were not raised with religion because I am not religious. My first husband was Catholic, but non-practicing. We didn’t baptize our son. My second husband was Buddist, but again, non-practicing.
    We all (both husbands and I) discussed and decided to raise our kids without religion and let them decide for themselves. Sure there were questions and we answered them in the kindest, albeit vague, way possible.
    I do have faith, but in my own private and personal way. I was very angry at God when I thought my younger son was dying of osteogenic sarcoma. After he was correctly diagnosed (three weeks later) with chondroblastoma (non-life threatening) I did say a BIG prayer of thanks. I know that sounds conflicting, but it works for me.
    My sons are grown now and one believes in God and the other one doesn’t. Their business, not mine. They are both amazing human beings and I couldn’t be more proud.
    HUGZZZZ my lovely friend,
    Terri

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Terri Sonoda, Thank you so much friend for being respectful! See I’m just so angry with my faith. It’s been such a hard go for all of us for the last 9 years. I prayed. I went to church and still all of these things happened. And yes, everyone has their share of problems but it just angered me to the very core. I had to step away.
      I don’t believe in organized religion. I don’t. I don’t think that any religion is right or wrong. If you study all religions they all believe in a God. I think that I’m more comfortable in believing in a God that loves all regardless of race, gender, sexual preference…that he loves us all.
      But now that my child is going to be attending Catholic school, this questions will be more and more…I want him to choose what he believes in…but I am just having a hard time teaching him about JEsus. Does this make sense??

  37. I have been almost irreparably angry at God twice. Once when my first husband died, and again when my brother died. They were both killed by people who either shouldn’t have been driving or weren’t paying attention. I’m still angry at the unfairness of it all. At both of their memorial services, the (two different) pastors said that God has given us free will and as a result, bad things are going to happen to good people.

    When my brother (the kids’ uncle) died, the oldest two were old enough to wonder what was going on, and they ask questions ALL THE TIME. About Heaven, and God, and everything in between. That’s mostly what we talk about. The rest of it, for right now, I let Sunday School do the teaching (I grew up Methodist and we now go to United Church of Christ).

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Greta @gfunkified, I am so so so sorry that you lost 2 amazing people in your life. And you’re right, it isn’t fair.
      My life has been flipped upside down for years. Bad back injury, lawsuit, lost grandparents, postpartum depression, bipolar…and it goes on. I just wonder why me?! And it makes me angry that all of this is happening to us. I know that everyone has their share of problems but gah…it infuriates me when I went to church, prayed and I am a good person.
      So yes, I had to step back from all of it. But now that my son is asking questions and will be attending school (catholic) I’m kind of at a loss as to what I should do.
      Thank you so much for sharing your story.

  38. I’m not at all religious but I do have faith. I fail as a mother and nurturer because I haven’t introduced my younger kids to church and religion. We say we’re going to attend church but it just seems we never make it a priority. This morning I got up extra early and focused on getting a great wholesome breakfast into their bellies, about 10:30 am I realized, dammit, I missed church again. Maybe next week.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Melinda@LookWhatMomFoundandDadtoo!, I don’t think that you’re failing at parenthood at all. I haven’t discussed religion with my son either but that doesn’t mean that he’s not growing up to a beautiful good natured soul. Your kids are good kids. I don’t think that attending church makes you a better person than someone who doesn’t go to church…does that make sense?
      PS. Breakfast? Nom nom nom.

  39. I “believe” but I’m not religious. At some level, I honestly believe God exists but I’m fed up with all of the religious fanaticism in the world. After all, religion has been the driving force between most of the wars and terrorist acts.
    I also respect that everyone has the right to believe whatever works for them. My mom has always derived a lot of strength from her church. On the other hand, my husband who is Jewish thinks God died during the Holocaust (who can blame him).
    In terms of teaching your kids, I’ve struggled to give my kids enough information and identity so that they can make their own choices too. We’ve always celebrated the Jewish holidays with my husband’s family and the Christian holidays with mine. My kids have loved this arrangement because they’ve ended up with twice as many gifts.
    Definitely a tough issue for all families struggling with the issue of religion and the role it plays in their lives.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Karyn Climans, I agree with you. I believe in God. I believe that he loves us all no matter what religion we believe in. We are raising chunky to be tolerrant and respectful of all religions, cultures, gender, race etc. because we believe that’s what God wants us to do.
      I don’t agree with a lot of things that the Catholic religion wants us to which is why I’ve steered clear from it.

  40. i tried to reply underneath your response but it wouldn’t work, i was going to say, i don’t ever want to stifle any of hopes, dreams or beliefs, even if they’re not mine. it will be hard if she ends up being conservative though, lol!

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @katery, LOL! I really appreciate your honesty!

  41. I didn’t grow up with religion. I sort of “found” it as an early adult. Then my son got to be a pain in church and we stopped going. My son’s babysitter talked about Jesus to the kids a lot, he did vacation bible school, but we still weren’t regulars. We had some rough years, questioned belief, drifted, came back strong. My son got involved in church as a teen. I feel we’re in another weird place right now with him involved, me partially involved and my husband questioning his beliefs. I do believe, I don’t always understand. But I think it’s okay that my son sees these struggles! THAT, is a very brief summary 🙂

  42. Seems I’m a bit late to the “we’re all going to hell” party.

    Here’s my story and I’ll try to make it short.

    I was raised Methodist, but we really only went to church on Easter and Christmas. We went to public school. I was not married in a church (either time). Was never particularly religious, although when I was raising my boys, I thought I believed in God and they were both baptized because I thought it was the thing to do. My boys have never attended church as adults as far as I know, although they attended some Sunday school and church-run pre-school.

    If anyone asks me today, I have no issue stating I’m an athiest. I won’t go into how or why I arrived at this, but for me, it is absolutely the right thing. My husband and I are both on the same page concerning this issue.

    If I knew then what I know now — I would have raised my children the same way — based on my values and my beliefs at the time. I can’t see how it can work any other way.

    Well, that wasn’t very short. But what a great topic.

  43. Tough question. I wasn’t raised in any particular faith. My mom sent me to Sunday School when I was young because she wanted me to decide for myself. I didn’t like it, apparently, and that was that.

    Same with my husband, though he was Christian for a while (is that even how you say it?) when he dated an earlier girlfriend. Now, neither of us is very fond of organized religion. We don’t talk about God at all, actually, and what I believe about God and Jesus (or don’t believe as the case may be) might sound scandalous.

    I would definitely talk to Connor about it and encourage him to make up his own mind but I gotta be honest – being Christian wouldn’t be my first choice for him.

  44. our daughter was baptized Methodist and when she was in high school an unnamed but what we considered cult like group of teens tried to recruit her. They encouraged her not to discuss with us. We deemed it unacceptable as they had some harsh opinions such as women needed to be very subservient and they were very intolerant of gay couples to name of few.

    She was on lock down until she finished high school. In college, she decided to covert and become Catholic. She is extremely active, teaching Sunday school and playing her cello at mass. We are very happy for her, she chose a different religion than us but one that embraces her and others.

  45. You raised some very relevant questions, Kimberly. In our family, we have faith in God. Not exactly rigidly religious, but I do light the lamp every morning and offer a cup of milk at our “altar” It is easy for me to follow various things by habit, probably because I grew up that way. Luckily my son loves all the things we do – he too grew up learning prayers and hearing stories from my Mom. We have gazillion festivals related to our various “Gods” in different forms and we enjoy them with loads of yummy stuff to eat. And of course, there’s “om” sweet “om”. We love visiting temples (me mostly for the peace of the architecture – the proportions are epic) but won’t go into one that is crowded.

    Now, Sury, my husband is not religious. He refuses to follow any kind of ritual (we have lots) – and I am cool with that. Yet, both of us inform Vidur – and let him take his own decisions – and things are harmonious.

    We are lucky the three of us are in total sync. Truly lucky. The only hassle is the rest of the family – extended – which is always disapproving of us and thinks we are “less” because we don’t follow rituals we don’t understand. I also visit church occasionally because I studied in Christian schools – so even now, I automatically make the sign of the cross when am nervous. 🙂

    Very thought-provoking post

    Hugs – Vidya.

  46. I’m so sorry Kim for what happened that made you so angry at God. I know, from my own life, that there were times when it seemed that there’s no one else to blame but God. I am a Christian who believes that God is good. He is always good.

    My parents were divorced when I was three, my mother used to hit me a lot when I was a child, and there were several years during which my parents put me in relatives’ houses because they were busy doing their own things. My father was a gambling addict, and we didn’t have much growing up. My husband cheated on me repeatedly, beginning from when I was five months pregnant with my daughter. Five months after I gave birth, I was diagnosed with Postpartum Psychosis and am now still struggling with depression. I have to take meds for the rest of my life. The latest? My husband of twelve years told me in April last year that he no longer had any feelings for me and wanted a divorce.

    There were definitely times when I wanted to scream at God and when I hated Him. But I also remembered that He never promises me that life on this world would be smooth sailing. What He promises is that I can find peace in Him amidst the storm. And I remembered that the times when I felt most peaceful were the times when I was closest in my personal relationship with Him.

    I would love for my daughter to accept Jesus in her life (as a Christian, a child has to make a personal decision when she’s grown up. On his or her own.). I don’t push her to attend Sunday school or to go to church with me. But I do ask her if she wants to come with me. And I do encourage her to pray. It is my hope that she would come to believe in Jesus not because I bring her to church or tell her to read the Bible, but because she sees with her own eyes how good Jesus has been to us. And as her mother, I really would like to show her that through my actions and how I respond to the circumstances in my life.

    I hope that you’ll find it in your heart to just bring all your anger, worries, all the burden on your shoulders onto His presence. You can even shout at Him if you want to. He loves you and I really believe that if you surrender all to Him, He’ll show you how to feel peace and joy even when all around you is chaos.

    {big hugs to you, my friend}

  47. Lots and lots of good comments here. Yes, I believe in God. Yes, we go to church (mostly) and want our child to share in our beliefs. Have I been hurt by the people in the church? Absolutely. Have I been hurt by people outside of the church? Absolutely. I have been angry at God, I have questioned him, wondered if He loved me. I don’t have all the answers and would never pretend that I do. A lot of times I’m afraid of sharing what I believe because people would look at me differently–think I’m one of “those close-minded intolerant” people. But I work on that. I try not to be judgemental. God taught us love. We may disagree about things, but we can still love each other, right? I know a lot of people wonder where God is when bad things happen, but I never hear them ask where He is when good things happen, you know? I know this life is hard. There are things so unfair and painful and you wonder how He allows it. I don’t know. But I know I can cling to Him during the hard times.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Rach (DonutsMama), You brought up a good point about how we never really speak about Him when good things happen.
      Food for thought.
      I believe in God, maybe just not religion. I’ve struggled a lot and I think I needed to be angry at someone. I just don’t understand how I could pray and things still fell apart ya know.

  48. whoa mama, 88 comments!!! I read this post Saturday night in the middle of the night while feeding Rainer… it really made me think (sorry i’m just now coming to comment!!)
    mr. p and i are both christians… born & raised. since living in mexico our eyes have been opened to other ways of life and beliefs… so we’ve become much more open minded and less rigid in our beliefs (i’d like to think not rigid at all.)

    anywho. we haven’t gone to church since Solo was born – so 3.5 years. we’ve had our issues with God, but really most of our issues are with people if you really think about it. we’re all so flawed.

    i don’t want to write a book here – but basically YES i totally get you. It’s hard. I have no idea where to start with a 3 year old.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @grace, I think for me too, that I’m questioning our religion. I believe in God but the bible…I…ugh…I don’t know. It’s so hard. Especially all that we’ve been through.

  49. We started religion on a very basic level talking about Jesus and of course my mom kicked it up a notch because we have to explain the concept of heaven to her. Honestly, I think she has gotten so SO much out of that one year in Catholic school. I couldn’t remotely teach her all she needs to know. She knows the practice and rituals from going to church, but honestly, when adults barely get anything out of church it’s hard for a 6 year old to understand.

    You just do what you can and Jesus loves you 🙂

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Jess, Yea I get you on that one. Chunky was 2 when my grandma passed and I have photos of her in the house…she was my world…and we’ve taught him about her being in heaven.
      But everything else…whew…I just don’t know.

  50. Amy Amy

    Hey Girlie, that is one thing that I am grateful about with my wacky parents, they did not force religion or use it to punish or guilt us into. My Mom introduced God, Religion and Church but nothing extreme. Although the majority of my family is religious…of the judging (others) variety while ignoring what they see in the mirror! It bothers me that people can behave a certain way one day and totally different the other 6…

    I relate to the entire anger toward God; I was so angry after the loss of my 1st baby it raged within me.

    Ten years and 3 months ago (to be exact) I got Sober … Oh boy did I discover some God ‘issues’ or so I thought. Over the years I’ve tried to find a Church that ‘felt’ right or taught in line with my beliefs; it never happened. I did a lot of work personally in this area; I’ve accepted that my problems are not with God but with my interpretation of the God people taught me to worship.

    I struggled for years about raising my kids in or out of Church but not anymore…I do not want to raise my children to have prejudices or guilt. I have faith in God … its ‘religious’ people I’ve lost faith in. I try to live by example and teach my children about God and Goodness! The importance of being kind, thankful and loving.

    I also think that it is important to teach my kids about mistakes and consequence and to admit when I’ve made a mistake. It is interesting as I’m typing I just realized that maybe I’m not teaching them about forgiveness. hmm. I have an extremely hard time letting go or trusting that life happens and sometimes there isn’t an umbrella large enough to keep the shit from raining down on me.

    Someone once told me that nothing absolutely nothing happens in Gods world by mistake … but, not everything is of Gods world when our will is our own! Great topic … thanks for opening it up for discussion. It’s interesting to read other peoples perspective on God and religion when shared in an open and accepting forum.

    I also wanted to let you know that I’ve moved my web address I no longer use (still own it) dot com… I’m now at mommetime (dot) me… I get a kick out of having ME 3x’s in my name… lol its all about me me me….the things that entertain me 🙂

    Just keep making noise! You are awesome…

  51. Hum, this was a very well written, thought provoking post.

    I was raised by a mom who believes. I attended a Baptist church from the day I was born. I took part in Sunday school . . . I taught Sunday school and I even attended and worked at a Baptist summer camp.

    Then I went away to university and began to study all sorts of different cultures and religions. At this point I no longer felt comfortable calling myself a Christian or affiliating with any sort of organized religion simply because I could not say that one was right over the other. A basic tenant in the Christian faith is that Jesus and God are the way and the light . . . but it is also a basic tenant in Islam and Judiasm. . . well that their god is the right way.

    Now I waver between trying to determine if I am agnostic or atheist. Is there a higher power? Am I spiritual yet not religious? I am not certain.

    That being said, I allow my mom to take my kids with her to church and I answer their questions as honestly as I can. I also make them aware of different belief systems and then they can follow where ever their hearts lead them. Although, they are only 4 and 2 so there is lots of time to really get into this.

    • Kimberly Kimberly

      @Jenn@Fox in the City, See I think that way too. No religion is right or wrong.
      We all believe (we meaning all religions) believe in a higher power. I really don’t think it matters that a religion that doesn’t believe in Jesus will be shunned when their numbers up ya know?

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