Don't know where to begin


#1

Hi there! Little background info here: I was raised in a Catholic home, however my faith never meant much to me as a child/teen. I met my non-christian boyfriend (now husband) and dated for two years and ended up pregnant. We had our daughter and married 2 years after her birth. We now have 5 children and I have since embraced my faith and even my husband converted. Our oldest is now 10, she knows she was at our wedding but has never asked how that happened-because we have taught our children that God wants us to be married before we have children. I know she’s starting to wonder about it and even our 8 yr old son said the other night at the dinner table “Hey mom, how was Brooke at your wedding? How did she come out of your tummy before you guys were married”??? I froze and said we’ll talk about this later. I knew this was coming I just dont know what to say or how to explain this in a sensitive way. My oldest is a very senistive child and I dont in any way want her to feel like she was a mistake, because that is most certainly not the case. In fact she is one of the biggest blessings in our lives. I’ve been praying for the Holy Spirit to guide me through this pending converstation, but I still would like some advise on which path to take this talk down. Any suggestions??? Thanks So Much~God Bless!


#2

I think you did well to put off this question to give you time to prepare. But eventually you will need to just bite the bullet and come out with the truth. If you put it off too long it will just get harder. It's better to wait until she asks the question again, but if you think that she has got the idea that this is a taboo subject then maybe you should raise the issue yourself before too much time goes by.

The way I would approach it is to just explain that what you did was wrong. I think you are also in a bit of denial. A pre-marital pregnancy is a mistake in that it is the result of a grave sin. If your child feels that she was unwanted or illicit then that is just the sad reality and consequence of your sin which if you strive to avoid will only cause more problems down the track.

Although I would not advise shying away or minimising the reality of your sin, I would also suggest that you very much emphasise your return to the faith and how richly you have been blessed both in your spiritual life, family life and in particular the blessing of having her as your daughter. When a man or woman repents and converts to the faith they are made holy by the sanctification of God. Not just themselves but also their children. Those things which were formerly unclean are sanctified and made holy.

The apostle Paul explains this.
1 Corinthians 7:14 For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband: else were your children unclean; but now are they holy.

So when you came to believe the Catholic faith, your husband was sanctified and subsequently also came to the faith as a result. By that same mechanism your children have also become holy.

So I would have a talk with your daughter which emphasises you and your families current state of sanctity and holiness and contrast it to the sinfulness of your former life. Explain to your daughter that it does not matter so much how we start our short life on earth. What is crucial is how we live it at the present and from each day until the end of our life. Our end is far more important than our beginning.


#3

First, I would suggest speaking to your parish priest about this, and asking for guidance.

Second, I would pray to the Holy Spirit for guidance.

Third, I would tell the truth.....the true story, so your eight-year-old and ten-year-old won't hear some "made up" story, maybe from someone else in your family. Both kids are probably old enough to understand some of the trials and tribulations we all go through. If you tell the story in a humble and straight-forward way, they may learn a valuable lesson.

You are to be complimented for your corncern for the children. But they can learn from our mistakes, too.

Be of good heart. God bless you and your family.


#4

Try the truth. If your daughter is old enough to "reason" that there is a discrepancy between what you say and what you did, the next "reasonable" conclusion is hypocrisy.

Therefore, to continue in "reasonable" standing with your very intelligent daughter, and to demonstrate that we live in an imperfect world, tell her the truth.

Dad and I made a mistake. We have confessed that mistake and GOD has forgiven us, which is why confession is very important. Now, we know better and are teaching you children the correct choices to make.


#5

I agree with the idea of going to ask the Priest for advice as well as the Holy Spirit but I also think telling the plain truth is the most important...when you say you made mistakes in the past and you sinned your oldest child should not feel that she is a product of sin...if you know what I mean...maybe the best is telling her something like this: You and your husband were lost and did wrong things, but your child is still a Gift of God, you found your way back to the Lord who forgave your sins...
Just my 2 cents :)

God bless!


#6

Hey, and if it makes you feel any better, I think *many *of us have pasts that we prefer not to share with our kids but somehow have a way of popping up. :blush:

The previous responses sound good to me. My kids are too young for me to give out advice. I appreciate you asking the question so I might be better equipped as things arise.

Prayers!


#7

Remember that God brings good oit of bad; that even tho yoir husband and you committed a sin, look at all the good God brought out of it, but if you two had married beforehand, then it would have avoided a mortal sin. Don’t say if you and your husband had waited but that if you two had married first, because you don’t want to leave her with the impression that if you two hadn’t sinned, then all the good, including her, wouldn’t have happened.


#8

There are good teaching moments in here, although it may be a little uncomfortable for you.

First, I would never describe your child as a mistake or imply it was a mistake. Whatever your intentions at conception, you welcomed her lovingly and fully. She was 100% blessing, and perhaps a big part of your maturing and recognizing the grace and wonder of God.

There are a few points you could work in…

  1. You fell out of friendship with God when you were younger, and started pleasing yourself instead. That often leads us to act selfishly, and others, especially children, can really get hurt when we do that.

  2. You were blessed with a wonderful daughter, and it worked out because you ended up married and in a stable, loving home situation. However, it often does not work out very well, especially for the children. The mom and dad often do not get married, or their marriage is unstable and breaks up. Having children is tough on the relationship between mom and dad, and it’s hard to build a strong marriage when kids come first. Everybody gets hurt when a marriage breaks up, but especially the children. They have a right to a stable. loving home with both their parents, but that’s threatened when we act selfishly and do things against God’s rules. That’s why God sets rules about when we should have sex and bring children into the world. It worked out for you, but it often does not. That’s why we should follow God’s rules - it works out best for us and for everyone when we do.

  3. If accurate, tell your daughter what a miracle she was, and how she helped you and your husband see God working in your lives (even if that took awhile). And that helped you return to God and build a strong, wonderful family.

  4. Emphasize that you when you finally recognized you weren’t living a godly life, (a) you reconciled yourself with God and started trying to do a better job and (b) God welcomed you back with loving arms and blessed you many times over. God will always welcome us back if we turn from selfishness and ask for forgiveness. And God is always loving us and calling us to himself and helping us find him, even if we’re not looking for him.

  5. Keep telling her how much you love her, and that you pray she will always stay close to God. Maybe ask her to pray that you always stay close to God, too, and that God will always keep blessing your family.

  6. This will be a good, personal story to bring up again in the future as your kids start facing the temptations of adult life. You’ve done it both ways, and you can be a strong witness for why it’s better to do things God’s way. There are all sorts of threads that your story can demonstrate - how sex outside of marriage has real consequences that can hurt people, why abortion is bad even if you get pregnant outside marriage, how birth control is no guarantee of not getting pregnant (or STDs), how important doing the right thing is, why God means marriage to be forever for the benefit of everyone, the amazing power of God’s love and reconciliation, …

And pray, of course. God will see you through.

Hope some of these thoughts might be helpful. God bless.


#9

[quote="catholicmamato3, post:1, topic:238167"]
Hi there! Little background info here: I was raised in a Catholic home, however my faith never meant much to me as a child/teen. I met my non-christian boyfriend (now husband) and dated for two years and ended up pregnant. We had our daughter and married 2 years after her birth. We now have 5 children and I have since embraced my faith and even my husband converted. Our oldest is now 10, she knows she was at our wedding but has never asked how that happened-because we have taught our children that God wants us to be married before we have children. I know she's starting to wonder about it and even our 8 yr old son said the other night at the dinner table "Hey mom, how was Brooke at your wedding? How did she come out of your tummy before you guys were married"??? I froze and said we'll talk about this later. I knew this was coming I just dont know what to say or how to explain this in a sensitive way. My oldest is a very senistive child and I dont in any way want her to feel like she was a mistake, because that is most certainly not the case. In fact she is one of the biggest blessings in our lives. I've been praying for the Holy Spirit to guide me through this pending converstation, but I still would like some advise on which path to take this talk down. Any suggestions???? Thanks So Much~God Bless!

[/quote]

How about saying it like it is? "x years ago me and daddy didn't know Jesus like we do now, and we didn't know that its best only to have children when you are already married."

Thats the truth, right, and very simple and kept positive. Children are intelligent. They realise at an early age that not everyone is a believer, and that people live their lives according to different world-views.

Peace to you.


#10

From a New Testament perspective, I suppose it is important to let your kids know that they have been given the gift of being able to know Jesus at an earlier age and so with the mistakes you/I made out of ignorance; though it were the same act; the repercussions are profoundly different for our children. Because “for those who much has been given; much will be expected”. And to paraphrase Romans: knowledge of law makes the sinful act a real sin.

NO idea how to broach that one.

I only pipe in because I think that is one of the ways preachers’ kids get so lost. (From mere observation). They mistakenly think their parents are hypocrites for expecting their children to behave in a more upright manner than they did. Also parents feel guilty about their past too; and so let things slide that they KNOW are happening. It’s sad.

:shrug:


#11

[quote="JerryS, post:8, topic:238167"]
There are good teaching moments in here, although it may be a little uncomfortable for you.

First, I would never describe your child as a mistake or imply it was a mistake. Whatever your intentions at conception, you welcomed her lovingly and fully. She was 100% blessing, and perhaps a big part of your maturing and recognizing the grace and wonder of God.

There are a few points you could work in...

  1. You fell out of friendship with God when you were younger, and started pleasing yourself instead. That often leads us to act selfishly, and others, especially children, can really get hurt when we do that.

  2. You were blessed with a wonderful daughter, and it worked out because you ended up married and in a stable, loving home situation. However, it often does not work out very well, especially for the children. The mom and dad often do not get married, or their marriage is unstable and breaks up. Having children is tough on the relationship between mom and dad, and it's hard to build a strong marriage when kids come first. Everybody gets hurt when a marriage breaks up, but especially the children. They have a right to a stable. loving home with both their parents, but that's threatened when we act selfishly and do things against God's rules. That's why God sets rules about when we should have sex and bring children into the world. It worked out for you, but it often does not. That's why we should follow God's rules - it works out best for us and for everyone when we do.

  3. If accurate, tell your daughter what a miracle she was, and how she helped you and your husband see God working in your lives (even if that took awhile). And that helped you return to God and build a strong, wonderful family.

  4. Emphasize that you when you finally recognized you weren't living a godly life, (a) you reconciled yourself with God and started trying to do a better job and (b) God welcomed you back with loving arms and blessed you many times over. God will always welcome us back if we turn from selfishness and ask for forgiveness. And God is always loving us and calling us to himself and helping us find him, even if we're not looking for him.

  5. Keep telling her how much you love her, and that you pray she will always stay close to God. Maybe ask her to pray that you always stay close to God, too, and that God will always keep blessing your family.

  6. This will be a good, personal story to bring up again in the future as your kids start facing the temptations of adult life. You've done it both ways, and you can be a strong witness for why it's better to do things God's way. There are all sorts of threads that your story can demonstrate - how sex outside of marriage has real consequences that can hurt people, why abortion is bad even if you get pregnant outside marriage, how birth control is no guarantee of not getting pregnant (or STDs), how important doing the right thing is, why God means marriage to be forever for the benefit of everyone, the amazing power of God's love and reconciliation, ...

And pray, of course. God will see you through.

Hope some of these thoughts might be helpful. God bless.

[/quote]

Yes, thats EXACTLY what i'm trying to do-I NEVER want imply SHE was a mistake. Your advise was awesome-and exactly what I was looking for! Thank you =) You found the words I was searching for.


#12

[quote="GraceDK, post:9, topic:238167"]
How about saying it like it is? "x years ago me and daddy didn't know Jesus like we do now, and we didn't know that its best only to have children when you are already married."

Thats the truth, right, and very simple and kept positive. Children are intelligent. They realise at an early age that not everyone is a believer, and that people live their lives according to different world-views.

Peace to you.

[/quote]

Thats a perfect way of explaining this to my younger 8 yr old! And when the other little ones start to ask, I'll know what to say! Of course my 10 yr old will need more of an explantion but this is a very appropriate way to start! Thank you so much!


#13

You are so welcome, sweet sister.
There is a person I love who also was conveived outside of marriage.
There was put a lot of guilt on the young mother and she had a very hard and painful
delivery also because of this. Later she told her child how his birth was such a horrible
experience. The relationship between mother and son has been tense and the son has
suffered much from this throughout his life.
So indeed, its important to know for a child that they are 100 percent wanted and loved. My own mom nearly died when giving birth to me. My dad sometimes tell about that with great drama, but I always knew that my mom loves me immensely and unconditionally, so
this fact doesn’t disturb my self image.
:slight_smile:


closed #14

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