Isaac Lake – Bowron Lake Provincial Park, British Columbia, Canada. Image credit: Emerging Gently.
I’ve been on a mental health journey for the past few months, and through counselling and therapy, I have been finding out a lot about myself and what literally, on the most basic levels, “makes me tick”. Until recently, I proudly thought that I had exorcised most of the Christian Science “demons” from my life. How wrong I was! All I had done was pick the low-hanging fruit (for me, anyway): conditioning myself to go to the doctor, take painkillers and cold meds, and to reach for antibiotics when I need them, that was all was easy (for some former Christian Scientists, I realize that this is difficult). I do it without even a second thought now, and have done so for several years. I was reveling in the idea that I was a “normal human being” now. But, as I’ve discovered, Christian Science is still engrained in me in a deep way, running in the background, like so-called “running processes”–those little computer programs that are part of the operating system. You’re usually never aware of them–until you are.
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Since 2009, this has not been an easy time of year for me, to be honest. On December 25, 2009, at approximately 6:30 pm, after an approximately seven year battle with untreated (and I don’t consider Christian Science “treatment” to be any sort of valid treatment at all) heart failure, my Dad died. My holiday malaise usually gets going around the weekend of American Thanksgiving, usually the last Thursday of November. That’s when I flew out to where Dad lived to look after him in what turned out to be his last days. Continue reading →
This is part of an occasional series of posts that will look into what it’s like to grow up as a Christian Scientist. Look for posts under the category “Growing Up Christian Scientist“.
Orange juice makes me happy!
This was the once-proud pronouncement of a child who grew up in a Christian Science household. She related this to a Christian Science practitioner, and was sternly rebuked. Yes, you heard me right–this happy child was rebuked for simply expressing how happy something as simple as orange juice made her feel! Can you believe that? I’ll bet most people can’t, but those of us who grew up swimming in the Krazy Sauce of Christian Science just give a knowing head-nod and eye-roll. We’ve all been there before in one way or another. Continue reading →
Image credit: Emerging Gently.
Throughout our lives, we unpack stuff. You go on a trip, you unpack some stuff at the destination so you can easily access things. You return home, you unpack your stuff, and settle back into your routine at home. You move, you pack all your stuff up, haul it to your new home, then unpack. It’s part of the cycle of life. It’s also part of what I’d call the practice of good mental health. A term I’ve learned over the past few years in relation to mental health is precisely this term: unpacking. Continue reading →
Many of us who’ve left Christian Science, and I’m sure others who know about it, wonder why otherwise perfectly rational and sane people remain steadfast believers, despite repeated and undeniable failures on the part of Christian Science to heal. Most of us ex-Christian Scientists would put our past selves into that category of former “true believers despite the evidence to the contrary.” On a discussion thread in one of the ex-Christian Scientist Facebook groups, a group member offered a possible answer to this intriguing (to me, anyway) question. Continue reading →
The following guest post was written by Chris. This is Part Two of a two-part post. Part One was posted last Sunday.
About four months after visiting my Sunday School teacher’s home, my mother suddenly had the idea that I needed to change Christian Science Sunday Schools in order to have a “man teacher”. It was suddenly imperative that I have a ‘man teacher’. How absurd! I already had a male Sunday School teacher I was quite happy with. I had been acquainted with him for about three years at that time. He was strong, thoughtful, intelligent, and had a great sense of humor. And he had, literally, saved my life some months earlier. What better example of a strong man could I have had?
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The following guest post was written by Chris. This is Part One of a two-part post. Part Two will be published next Sunday.
I grew up in the crazy and bizarre end of the already crazy spectrum of Christian Science. But I can claim some novelty in this story, however. My mother used Christian Science as cover to confuse and do harm to me. Continue reading →