Personality Cafe banner

1 - 7 of 7 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
600 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm a college student and haven't seen my father in about a year. We do keep correspondence, but ever since my sophomore year of high school, relations have been strained between us. I'm not really sure of the cause, but the arguments started over religious beliefs.

Without getting too much into it, I was going to convert to his religion, which was the most I'd heard and been taught about growing up. However, before I made a life-changing decision like that, I decided to see what else was out there, and more specifically, what others had to say that was contrary to the religion, since I'd heard so much about and had questions of my own. Ultimately, in the face of the convincing evidence presented against it, I was compelled to decide not to join. I shared my findings with my father and asked a ton of questions, and ultimately, that debate did get heated and emotional.

Three and half years later, we're back at it again. The only difference is this time I've matured a bit and tried my best to be objective and keep any snarkiness condescension out of it. My dad sent the first email, to which I responded point-by-point, and which he replied only to a few points.

It seemed like he just got offended because he thought I put him in a 'box' based on a video I sent him, (the person in the video says there are two types of religious people, and my father understandably vehemently denied he was such, but I never said I agreed with EVERYTHING in the video; I used it to illustrate one particular point.) and decided to respond in turn, calling me a progressive/left wing that hates religion and God and that people in an evolution class would be "my people," and generally being snarky and condescending and mocking me for supposedly thinking I was soooo smart, smarter than God and everything.

And it's because of his obvious immaturity, constant negativity, attitude and other things that I'm wondering if I should even try to have a relationship with him anymore. Every day it becomes harder and harder to care about this person, which I do, though he has the impression I don't. He even said to me during the first argument that it didn't matter, because he'd have more children in the "new system" that would give a damn about him. He apologized, I think, I can't friggin' remember for sure, but it was still a sign of instability and spite.

So, basically, I'm wondering, am I being too cold or am I justified for wanting to diminish contact with him? It's all just gotten to be a mess so I don't even know anymore. :frustrating:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,228 Posts
Never break off all contact.

I would say,you don't need to prove you are right, and he needs to accept you as an adult who makes their own choices. Both of you need a bit of time to work this out.

I think I'd send an email saying that you do love him, and you do respect him, but you don't share his beliefs. That you don't believe your beliefs are any more special than his, they are just different. That you think you both need a little time to cool off so you won't be contacting in a while, but look forward to seeing him at Christmas/ New year/his birthday/whenever.

And don't read any emails from him for a while.

I've realised over the years that relationships with parents can be as up and down as those in a marriage. You're different people trying to rub along. But you have to work at it. One bad patch does not mean you have to get a divorce.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
571 Posts
Don't break it all off with him, but don't bring up the subject of religion.

If you really want to talk about it then establish some ground rules before the emails start flying (DOn't do this face to face, things tend to get very heated and you can't consider your statements as well). Explain every point clearly and make sure he responds to every point of yours. Maybe get someone to act as.. what's the word, moderator?

It seems like this kind of conversation can only go south, but if you really want to then make sure there are rules both of you agree to adhere to. Diminish contact, but don't cut it off entirely. You're not being cold, you're being rational by not wanting to say anything you may regret in the heat of the moment.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Alaiyo Sakuri

·
Registered
Joined
·
261 Posts
I can agree with not bringing it up, but then the way I believe in God is a little weird to some people. I choose to believe God caused the Big Bang, and created evolution and gave us science in which to improve ourselves. After this I consider the Bible a simple history book, and like all history, things change, the Bible itself has examples of this. When Moses came down from the mountain with the 10 commandments and created law, Adultry was treated by being stoned to death, however, once Jesus came, he said "Let a man without sin cast the first stone." Which I consider a turning point towards society needing to be more understanding.

Like I said, my belief is a little strange and out there.

As for dealing with your father, the way I deal with such things is fairly open, I lived with my Grandma for a while, and I always asked her how church went, let her be happy in telling me such, and whenever I got asked to come along, I would simply say it just was not for me, because there always seems to be a border between people in a church, and I can't agree to that, and neither does the Bible, yet it always seems to happen anyway.

This helped me out when dealing with church family members, and worked for the most part.

If that isn't something that works for you, evade and avoid religious conversations with simply "I don't want to talk about it." and if it is in email, simply do not respond to it unless, of course, it is entirely about it, and then send a one line reminder that you do not want to talk about it. The only problem with this is, is it can lead to a falling out with your father if he decides to be that immature about it, but again, as you are both adults now, he needs to learn to accept your positions on things you take, but that goes both ways as well, which is why I mentioned how I dealt with my Grandma.

Anyway, food for thought.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Alaiyo Sakuri

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,853 Posts
Don't cut off all contact.

Religion is something that he'll have to get over. I don't care if anyone shares my religion, and don't really think anyone else should, either.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Alaiyo Sakuri

·
Registered
Joined
·
600 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the replies. :) Although, at least for now, I think I wil have to cease contact with him. With more replies to the conversation, I realized what my mother has been trying to tell me for years; he's not a nice person. And it's no surprise to me that he's starting to treat me the way he's treated his mother and my mother, so...I guess that's it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,228 Posts
Sounds very final.

I am assuming your parents are separated? Your mother isn't being objective, and it isn't her place to come between you and your father. Hey, maybe she's right, but you have to make up your own mind.

Good that you have another parent for emotional support, if you need a break, take it. But we are all flawed, and it is hard, expecting your parents to be perfect. Somebody on the ropes might tend to lash out, and if you Dad is in a happier place maybe he wouldn't....
idk about any of this, just adding a few devil's-advocate comments, for thought.
 
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
Top