Open Thread: Christmas Aftermath – Maintaining Healthy Emotional Boundaries in Family Dysfunction Post-Evangelicalism

Open Thread: Christmas Aftermath – Maintaining Healthy Emotional Boundaries in Family Dysfunction Post-Evangelicalism December 29, 2015
An enormous Hofbrau House beer consumed post-dysfunction Christmas this year. Image by Suzanne Titkemeyer
An enormous Hofbrau House beer consumed post-dysfunctional Christmas this year. Image by Suzanne Titkemeyer

Just wanted to throw open a discussion thread to discuss best ways to deal with the holidays and family after leaving your old faith. Or perhaps you’ve not left but a family member has. Or your family is filled with dysfunction, turmoil and trauma that has nothing to do with  religion at all. Do you struggle to maintain healthy emotional boundaries in the holidays? Did you have to fend off an over-eager fundamentalist relative wanting to issue some serious ‘Come To Jesus’ your way as recently described by Bruce Gerencser?

All over Facebook and in talking to many friends it seems like many of us have been struggling to deal with family members behaving very badly to the point where it’s seriously impacting recovery from spiritual abuse. One young man I spoke with is on the verge of divorce, a divorce he doesn’t want, because his wife’s fundamentalist family is urging her to be with Jesus instead of her husband. Another lady in recovery had to deal with intoxicated family members showing up three hours late with half the dinner before they told the family gathered there they were all going to hell. In my own personal holiday this year I had to deal with an in law that minimized and disrespected my ADA accommodations who flew into crazy pieces the moment I stood up for my needs. But the worst I witnessed or heard about this year was my husband’s sixty year old plus brother treating him very badly, to the point where it ruined a good part of the holiday for most of the family. He owes everyone in our group an apology, but there’s very little chance of that while he’s a bitterly blaming Christian.

So this is the place if you need to vent or suggest how to survive holidays with your relatives with issues and possible religion related quirks, or no religion, or whatever. Share away.

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NLQ Recommended Reading …

Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement by Kathryn Joyce

13:24 – A Story of Faith and Obsession by M Dolon Hickmon


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