Mandy Sue asked...Do you still go to church? Do you wear pants now? I guess I want to know is how far from your upbringing are you now? Did you realize that your parents were wrong so you just stepped away or did you go crazy and do things you never thought you would do like drink alcohol?
I'm not sure how long Mandy Sue has been reading, so I'm going to answer this again. In the future, though, I need to figure out some way to catalogue posts into groups so people can go back and see what has already been answered in these Q&A type posts. :) Anyone who can suggest how to do that would be a welcome commenter (although, anyone is always welcome).
Do I still go to church? We never really *went* to church in the first place - church was almost always in our home or in the home of someone we considered to be part of our "home church". In the Bible, it says that wherever a likeminded group gathers to worship, then God is present and that is "church". Alot of the ATI crowd keeps to that belief. I guess you could say - then- that I worship in the same way I always have - in my home, privately. I tried going to different churches after leaving my old life behind and, whether it was because I wanted to see it or because it really was there, I saw old vestiges of patriarchy and arbitrary rules in every church I went to. Nothing fit and to this day nothing really fits with the thoughts about God that I have. As a result, I choose to stay on my own until I figure out what it is that I'm looking for. I have too many questions about organized religion, and even - at some moments- God himself, to assign myself a check-box of faith.
Do I wear pants? Yes. I love pants. :) I am learning to love shorts. I had a progression of comfort, which I'm sure would be true for anyone trying a new style. I still wear dresses when they're appropriate or comfortable, but I loves me some hiking capris and sweats. Where I still struggle is with my modesty issues. I have an unnatural, I'm told, fear of looking sexual. Showing skin is something I'm growing into. I still have to work on being comfortable in my own skin, but I'm getting better. Bathing suits are much easier to wear now.
I didn't really "go crazy" because I was still a minor when I left. Then, when I turned 18, I had too much on my plate to "go crazy". I also had no money, which leaves little for "going crazy" and binge partying. :) I have drank. I don't much like it.
How are you and Harris doing? What is he majoring in?
We are great. I prefer not to talk about his specifics here. I will only say that his major is something that will mean more school, if he chooses not to follow into the family business. He's getting very close to being finished with school if he decides not to go into a graduate program.
With the elections coming up, I'm curious how your family dealt with them growing up. Was it something like your family was told to vote for a specific person, or did they leave that to personal choice?
My parents treated elections very much like you see Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar treat elections. We campaigned hard for people who "shared ""our"" values". We were exposed to the process from birth and were expected to participate. The discconnect occured when, as young women, I realized that I was really supposed to let my husband be my "head" and that meant listening to his counsel on who to vote for and what to vote for. My mom would sit at the table with my dad and they'd go through each issue and they'd pretend to "debate". Really, it was a show for us children because, as I got older, I noticed that my mom's sample ballot would have already been checked and noted in my dad's handwriting, with his pen. Basically, there were always core issues that would determine who my family was to support - abortion, religion, and "family values".
@Sheena - I think I may have answered your question, above. :)
Lauren H asked...I'm curious about what was taught to you about history - particularly cultures and time periods dominated by non-Christian traditions and beliefs. Could you give us some insight?
We were taught a very Christian-centered, white-washed version of all history. We didn't have much instruction at all, beyond basic definitions of groups, into other cultures. I knew there were Muslims, but I don't think I was told much about them until 9/11/2001 and then it was a highly negative portrayal. I had been schooled in the major differences and similarities of Judaism - but it was a surface level discussion. I knew Hindu's existed but had never met one. That sort of thing.
@Z is for Ramble - I haven't "thrown out" my parents beliefs, I've just filed them appropriately. LOL
Maria - My question is - Do you have any contact with your extended family i.e. aunts, uncles, grandparents etc.? Are any of them ATI also? And if not, are any of them supportive of you at the moment?
My extended family, outside of brothers and sisters, is extremely small. I choose not to go into the specifics of my dad's family because it would be easy to identify us. I have very extended family but they're distant and the basics are that if they talk to me, my father won't talk to them.
Thank you to those who threw a little someting at the tip jar. I *did* use it for something frivolous, as instructed. I went to see a movie and bought a jumbo popcorn and coke. :) The leftovers I spent on some farmer's market fruit and a jar of Nutella. It always seemed a little pricey, but I loved it. *big hugs and thank yous!*