Trying to help my family


#1

Hi! Well I’ve been here awhile so anyone who’s read my previous threads might now this by now…but in case you don’t: I’m 19 and converting to Catholcism (yay!) this april…I’ve been in RCIA since september and love it :smiley: I grew up in a baptist family (mom’s a former catholic and almost became a nun) who has always had some trouble accepting my decision. But I love them and I know they love me…so I’ve tried to make this as easy as possible for them.

At 1st its wasn’t so good. Mom and Dad took turns accepting/not accepting the fact of my converting. Mom (who is a nurse and who anyone - myself included - would describe as the kindest, most caring person you’ve ever met) shocked me when she threatened to kick me out of the house. She apologized, it was just something she said out of anger. Dad, who generally allows me to make my own decisions, started acting very different…and actually became physically violent on a few occasions :frowning:

To keep the stress level at home to a minimun…I kept going to my parents church for some time and still do on occasion…despite the pastor there, who publically humiliated me by telling the whole congragation I was “throwing away” my salvation. I sorta had to let it go…I’m more concerned about my family…

That all was a few months ago…and for quite some time now things seemed to be looking up :slight_smile: I still went to Mass and RCIA, but it was never made a conversation topic at my house…which seemed to be for the best. However…lately my parents have been fighting more than they used to (they’ve been married 25 years and almost NEVER argue). Their arguments are causing my little siblings (age 16months and 5 months) to get very upset…and my other sister (age 17, who’s also my best friend) and I are trying to help where we can.

I overheard one argument in which Dad confessed that most of his stress is because of me and he’s not sure he loves me anymore. Obviously I never wanted to cause all of these problems for my family and I feel terrible. I love them all so much and believe that famlies should stick together no matter what…but right now mine seems to be falling apart and I can’t help but feel its partially my doing. Any advice to make things better…or anything, would be really appreciated!


#2

+JMJ

Firstly, may God’s greatest blessings be upon you.

Please know that you are not alone in your rough times. We are all in Christ’s body so we all suffer together and prosper together. Christ said that we would be persecuted for His name’s sake, and that certainly wasn’t a farce of his time. You must pray fervently for the conversion of your family and for their well being, despite how much they persecute or censure you. Pray for God to give you suffering, fast and go to mass regularly and offer up your prayers as much as you can for the sake of the conversion of your family.

I know it is hard to be apart of a family that does not accept you for who you are (I can relate) but you must stand strong and get back up every time you fall by the hands of your family’s strictures. As our Lord said: “Apart from me, you can do nothing.”

May the grace of God be with you always
:signofcross:


#3

It is not good that your father has become physically violent. And that he is saying that he may not love you any more! These are very horrible things for a parent to do and to say. Somehow I can’t help but think that your father has had other problems during his life, for him to come so unglued. But then I understand the Baptist point of view (or some Baptists anyway) that Catholics are pagans and are doomed to Hell. But to say he may not love you any more? How painful for you.

Being violent with a 19 year old daughter (or son for that matter) could be considered abuse. Just to put that out there, I am not saying you need to report it but it’s wrong for that to ever happen. Your dad should have better control of his temper. That is never right. Somehow I think that a couple that never argues is avoiding confrontation…my husband and I do that too, we’re both afraid of conflict so we avoid tough subjects and are now in counseling.

I think you should go and talk to your priest about this as soon as possible. He may have some experience that can help you in this situation. You are really under a trial for your faith! This is a great forum with a lot of really nice people and you can get support here for your future life in the Church.


#4

thanks both of you.

TheRealJuliane - I agree…I think Dad as some emotional problems that he himself hasn’t dealt with in his life. If thats the case, I feel sorry for him :frowning: he’s always beena great dad and for whatever wrong he’s done, I forgive him of course. He was only physcially violent once or twice. I understand this is wrong and if someone if routinley abusive its not good to make excuses for them. I think that parts over though (I hope). But as an older sibling to a toddler and infant, I’m prepared to act in their best intrests if he would start hitting us again…but like I said, it was very out of his nature.

Thanks for the prayers and I’ll just have to do my best in every situation…when I first decided to convert I had NO clue how challenging it would be…but at the same time, I had not idea how rewarding it would be either. :slight_smile:


#5

Welcome home…Your statement brought tears to my eyes. I am a “revert” after many long and lonely years away from the faith of my youth. I know what you mean. Please know that I will pray for you. And go see your priest about your situation. At the very least, he can also pray and may be able to counsel you as to how to deal with your parents in a more effective way.


#6

Daddy knows best.


#7

You have been reported.

Remember the golden rule - if you can’t say something nice, be quiet. This applies.


To the OP, ignore Stmarofnirvana, because clearly she is wrong. No father (or mother) should EVER resort to abuse and violence.

Stay strong, and be a great example to your younger siblings.


#8

You are rude indeed ,and you need to get out of Stmaronirvanas face,uptight old biddy.


#9

[quote="Catholic90, post:7, topic:227894"]
You have been reported.

Remember the golden rule - if you can't say something nice, be quiet. This applies.to me ;iam a old busy body moo cow!


To the OP, ignore Stmarofnirvana, because clearly she is wrong. No father (or mother) should EVER resort to abuse and violence.

Stay strong, and be a great example to your younger siblings.

[/quote]


#10

I wish with all my heart that I had more solid advice for you. I feel terrible that your in this situation and that your siblings are too. Never, let anyone abuse us. Don't let your father take it too far. I don't want to make assumptions or jump to conclusions but ... God loves you as much as he does anyone else and there isn't any need for you to take abuse. I'm sorry if that is reading wrong or like I'm making accusations as I SINCERELY do not intend to.

You are loved. VERY VERY VERY much.

As I said, I wish I had better advice for you, but other than staying strong and keep praying for yourself, your family, especially your father, I fall short of being helpful.

You are in my thoughts.


#11

Your story is familiar. I was Southern Baptist. My mother was a fallen-away Catholic turned Southern Baptist. My father was from a Southern Baptist family who were so anti-Catholic they refused to attend my young cousin's (their granddaughter's) funeral, who had become Catholic on her death bed.

Very long story short, I became a Catholic. My parents were both very upset, Mother especially, since she was angry that I embraced the Faith she rejected. But they came to my reception into the Church (in Latin!) To my shock and surprise, the Holy Spirit fell on my angry, resentful, anti-Catholic father. He became a Catholic, my mother returned to the Church and my brother and his wife also became Catholics.

The problem was that my mother did not know her faith.

So there is hope, though at the time I thought it was hopeless. Prayer is the answer, plus do talk to your priest.

And learn your faith in depth so that you can defend it against anyone, especially your parents.

For example, do they know who founded the Baptists? the Catholic Church? Who wrote the New Testament? The study of Church history and the history of the Bible is critical. .

Here's a book online: Where We Got the Bible.

catholicapologetics.info/apologetics/protestantism/wbible.htm

Jim Dandy


#12

Thanks everyone…
I guess the best advice I’m getting is to not let it go to far…even though I’m trying to keep things calm, and to pray about it.

Thanks alot for your story Jim…sounds almost exactly like mine, to the letter. Maybe it will have a similar ending.

I’ve definitly been looking into way to defend my faith (books, scripture, etc) but I don’t feel its something I should share with my family at this point, especially when everything is so clouded with emotion. Maybe down the road when things are back to normal, who knows :blush:


#13

If your dad is being physically violent towards you, fighting with your mom, and saying he no longer loves you, the problem lies with HIM alone and I sincerely hope you will not blame yourself for it. Despite what he says, you are not the cause of the problems in your household - he is. It sounds like he probably had emotional problems and anger issues beforehand, but your conversion just happened to be the trigger that brought it to the surface. The trigger could just have easily been anything else. You are not the problem at all and don’t let him fool you into thinking you are!

Don’t let all this turmoil get you down or doubt your faith. I converted from Baptist to Catholic around your age (I was 21 at the Easter Vigil) and my family had their doubts, but it all worked out in the end. It may take them a while to get used to it, but at some point they have to come to terms with it somehow.


#14

Don’t let all this turmoil get you down or doubt your faith. I converted from Baptist to Catholic around your age (I was 21 at the Easter Vigil) and my family had their doubts, but it all worked out in the end. It may take them a while to get used to it, but at some point they have to come to terms with it somehow.

Thanks Charlotte…i know :slight_smile: I’m hearing a lot of similar stories, especially from people converting from Baptist to Catholic, and thats encouraging. Definitly doing my best and putting what I can’t control in God’s hand…he’s never let me down yet :wink:


#15

My :twocents: I would not attempt to share anything about the Church at this time, unless asked. But prepare yourself for when the questions and objections come. So study, and be ready to answer hard questions from your parents and friends and even strangers who will ask you “why.” This is an opportunity to teach others. Don’t be afraid to say, “I don’t know. I’ll look it up and get back to you.”

Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope, but do it with gentleness and reverence . . . 1 Peter 3:15.

A really good book for Baptists is "Born Fundamentalist, Born Again Catholic" by David Currie. He was a PK (preacher’s kid). Another book, but harder to read, is *Crossing the Tiber * by former Baptist Stephen K. Ray. Steve’s website is catholic-convert.com. He has lots of good articles about Catholicism available for anyone to read.

What kind of Baptist is your family? There are more than 250 different denominations of Baptists, and they are different in doctrines and/or practices. Some are more anti-Catholic than others. Southern Baptists (my kind) are among the worst. At least, that was my experience.

Make friends with a knowledgeable Catholic that you can lean on when you need information about the Church.

Blessings,

Jim Dandy
Ecstatic to be Catholic!


closed #16

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