Really hurt and I know I shouldn't be


#1

I knew full well when I converted that it would bother the Mormon side of my family. My brother and his family were on vacation over Easter weekend the year I came in but my stepmother and her husband said they'd be there for me. Lo and behold my stepmother hurt her back that afternoon and was unable to attend; since she didn't come, neither did her husband. I got over it but I wondered at the time if she was just trying to avoid being at Mass (she was raised Catholic).

Now my oldest daughter's First Communion is coming up. Earlier this week my stepmother and I were talking about the Easter Vigil and she expressed surprise at the number of people who were willing to still join the Church in light of the abuse scandal. I said something about people walking toward the Truth regardless of the human sin surrounding it and changed the subject. Now she's decided she's not coming to either my daughter's Communion or the party after for what I feel are ridiculous, avoidant reasons. My kids are her ONLY grandkids. She has no contact with my brother's kids at all. One of her daughters had a hysterectomy some time ago and the other has no plans to ever get married again let alone have children. I've spent my entire life being sensitive to their religious needs and I just feel like I've been kicked to the curb again. This is more a vent than anything else, but I've been so careful to try to cultivate a respectful relationship with her and it hurts.


#2

Oh, I’m sorry.

Is grandma cutting off or reducing contact in other ways as well? Or is it only the religious functions that she is staying away from. I say that because my perspective about religious events is that I wouldn’t expect someone who doesn’t share my beliefs to celebrate those events with me. So if I converted away from my family’s faith, I wouldn’t expect them to go to Masses or 1st Communions etc. It would seem more honest of them to stay away for those moments (particularly if they’re upset about your conversion - which I imagine any religious Mormon would be), and to enjoy the relationship in the moments when your differences are not highlighted so strongly. Still, if this is a change from her previous habits, I can see how it hurts. Even though we can logically make sense of our differences, they are still painful.


#3

I'm so sorry to hear of your difficulties...may you take great joy in your daughter's First Communion (YAY!!) and your life in the Sacraments.

Prayers that your heart be comforted, and that if there is any solution you will find it.

Blessings,
Sarah


#4

[quote="jazzbaby1, post:1, topic:194342"]
... she expressed surprise at the number of people who were willing to still join the Church in light of the abuse scandal.

[/quote]

A lot of politicians are crooks, but I still believe in democracy. I'll bet your stepmother does, too.

As GK Chesterton said, the best argument against Christianity is Christians. But that doesn't mean the faith isn't a good one.


#5

[quote="ThyKingdomCome, post:2, topic:194342"]
Oh, I'm sorry.

Is grandma cutting off or reducing contact in other ways as well? Or is it only the religious functions that she is staying away from. I say that because my perspective about religious events is that I wouldn't expect someone who doesn't share my beliefs to celebrate those events with me. So if I converted away from my family's faith, I wouldn't expect them to go to Masses or 1st Communions etc. It would seem more honest of them to stay away for those moments (particularly if they're upset about your conversion - which I imagine any religious Mormon would be), and to enjoy the relationship in the moments when your differences are not highlighted so strongly. Still, if this is a change from her previous habits, I can see how it hurts. Even though we can logically make sense of our differences, they are still painful.

[/quote]

I think the thing that bothers me most is that I've been expected to show huge amounts of tolerance and acceptance over the years and now it's not being extended to me or my child on what my stepmother knows is a major occasion. I can't tell you the number of Book of Mormon/Pearl of Great Price/Doctrine and Covenants combos I've received as presents over the years. I can't tell you the nuber of times she has sent the Missionaries to me. At all family dinners, Mormon prayers were said in a United Methodist house. She was my deceased mother's proxy for baptism and sealing a long time ago and the number of times THAT has been thrown at me -- "Don't you want to be sealed to your mother for all eternity? Your sisters are and they're not even related to her!" -- has been breathtaking. I've turned my cheek. Her brothers and sister are all still Catholic and she has no problem attending events for their families. It feels really personal, like it's me being rejected and not the Church.


#6

I am sorry you are experiencing this. It is normal to feel disappointed and hurt in this circumstance. It sounds like your Mom is uncomfortable attending church related events. Maybe she feels guilty about leaving the church, she might be facing pressure from LDS church members to not attend, or since she no longer believes in the Catholic faith, it might make her sad. Whatever the reason, keep praying for her. Let her know she has a standing invitation to go to Mass with you. I would keep on inviting her while keeping in mind she is unlikely to attend. That way it won`t be as disappointing for you.

Sincerely,

Maria1212


#7

Her love is conditional and she is attempting to use it to lure you back.

"...If they hate you remember that they hated ME first..." paraphrase of Jesus words to HIS disciples.

If you don't go the way of your grandmother, it is going to be the highway. The more times you expect something different from her, the more you allow her to leverage your feelings.

Pray the rosary for her, and tell her you are praying the rosary for her. Send her all the necessary invitations for the childrens events, but do not follow up. If she comes, she comes. Send her the photo's of her grandchildren so she can see what she is missing. And take it personally, for that is how it is meant, and then surrender it to GOD as a sacrifice in asking mercy on her soul.


#8

[quote="jazzbaby1, post:5, topic:194342"]
I think the thing that bothers me most is that I've been expected to show huge amounts of tolerance and acceptance over the years and now it's not being extended to me or my child on what my stepmother knows is a major occasion. I can't tell you the number of Book of Mormon/Pearl of Great Price/Doctrine and Covenants combos I've received as presents over the years. I can't tell you the nuber of times she has sent the Missionaries to me. At all family dinners, Mormon prayers were said in a United Methodist house. She was my deceased mother's proxy for baptism and sealing a long time ago and the number of times THAT has been thrown at me -- "Don't you want to be sealed to your mother for all eternity? Your sisters are and they're not even related to her!" -- has been breathtaking. I've turned my cheek. Her brothers and sister are all still Catholic and she has no problem attending events for their families. It feels really personal, like it's me being rejected and not the Church.

[/quote]

Ok, so what you're saying here is telling to me. From her perspective, SHE is the one who left the faith of her brothers and sisters. Because they were always Catholic, she always knew what to expect from them. She can't be offended by them continuing to be who they always were. You, however, are a surprise to her - you are rejecting her beliefs (whether it's her actual religion, or her opinions about the faith she left). So for her, it probably is more personal that you became Catholic than the fact that her siblings remained so. Perhaps that is why you see her holding it against you and not them.

I don't condone her actions though. The fact that she does go to other Catholic events, and not yours, is certainly troubling to me. She should pick a conviction and then be consistent with it. It is also possible that as the prev. poster said, she is attempting to influence you by withholding attention/love. You are her child, and she probably figures she has more influence over you than she would over her siblings.

I think from now on, it may be best to expect that she doesn't participate in your religious events, for the sake of you and your kids not being disappointed. Expectations may need to be lowered, but perhaps you can separate your religious differences from the other parts of the relationship, and still have a good relationship with her.


#9

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