I grew up in an evangelical Christian home and my faith was absolutely central to everything in my life - family, friends, volunteering, weekly and daily routines, identity, artistic expression, etc. etc.
Ten years ago, I began dating a Christian man...who also happened to be a narcissist. All the messages I'd received as a teenager and young adult made me discount any concerns about the relationship and to continue on until just a few weeks before our wedding before I broke it off. I believed that a Christian couple could get over any issues just because they were both Christian. Not only was this myth shattered by the relationship, but my ex was also spiritually abusive. He used prayer, Scripture, and spiritual leaders as weapons against me.
I've been fighting to hold on to my faith for so long and I've just reached a point of exhaustion at being triggered over and over and over. I'm not maintaining any spiritual practices at this point, beyond occasionally watching a Sunday church service online. I think I've been waiting for something to change - like holding space in my life for that community and those routines until I am able to participate wholeheartedly in them again.
I think I have reached a point where that is no longer a healthy way for me to live. I feel that I don't know who I am without Christianity, which is seriously impacting my sense of self and identity. I have very poor morning and evening routines because these were always tied in to faith practices for me. And I don't really have any meaningful community/ies that I am part of anymore as church and Bible study groups were always at the centre of my social life.
I think that I need to start figuring out some new routines and finding some new community connections. I am anxious about this because my family and the majority of my friends are all people of faith and if I start exploring things outside of that, they will not understand at all. I also don't really even know where to start as this has been my whole life.
And there is a lot of sadness in the thought of moving on from something that has been both so wonderful and so terrible for me. It feels like yet another defeat and is really the ultimate thing that my ex has taken from me.
I'm not really looking for advice, especially not for spiritual messages or promises to pray as those can be very triggering for me, but it is just helpful to be able to kind of publicly share where I am at. It relieves a bit of pressure and anxiety for me. Thanks for listening, Mighties. ❤️
#Christianity #Church #routines #habits #Community #MentalHealth #Depression #Anxiety #narcissisticabusesurvivor #emotionalabusesurvivor #spiritualabuse