For years I’ve been a liar. Not to everybody, just those of authority (bosses, teachers, etc.) and my family. To the figures of authority I’ll make up why I’m late or not showing up to work, I’ll exaggerate details or even make some up to strengthen my side of a story, I’ll deny petty things that I think don’t matter. To my family I put on a new face. A good face. The face that I think they want me to have – a Christian face.
Being raised a pastors kid certain choices and beliefs were made for me before I was born: live for Jesus, don’t swear, maintain purity and innocence, marry a Christian man, be a witness, the list goes on. The majority of my life I’ve lived in a naive ignorant bubble – unaware of much of the world outside Christianity until I was nearly an adult. Once that bubble popped I quickly realized that I cannot and don’t want to be the girl my family desires. I also knew that informing them of my revelation would be the same as saying “Hey Mom and Dad, your only daughter is going to Hell.” So I did what any rebellious child would do, I lied.
I got very comfortable when lying, and I was good at it. To be a good liar is simple: don’t over complicate your tale, use bits of the truth for credibility, don’t ever admit to fibbing, and if possible temporarily convince yourself that you’re either telling the truth or are correct.
I lied until I was nearing the point of insanity. Frustration towards my family, organized religion, and the Bible brewed inside of me. I feared what they would think if I let them see the version of me that I liked best. My friends got used to the occasional religion rant, often they chimed in agreement. My boyfriend at the time got used to me complaining about how religion fucked with me. He encouraged me to tell the truth – my friends did not.
Even with superb lying skills I reached my breaking point … this evening actually. Note: not because of my ex-boyfriend, though I am curious how me being honest with my family would have influenced our relationship.
So now my mom knows that I believe in God but have no desire to become involved in the church. She told me she was devastated, that I was throwing away everything, that the devil was devouring me, that she had sensed the lack of spirituality in me, and several stories about her God experiences. But she’s going to think of me with mercy. Eventually I had to stop her preaching. For I have heard it all before and was aware that if I were to say how I feel or think about most things she would listen with an ear of disappointment, there was no chance that she would even consider that I was right. And that’s what I hate about those type of conversations, the preacher never considers adjusting their beliefs. Never.
People say that the truth will set you free. Well, the truth also sucks. The truth in my situation gave me a 70% chance of sermon when in the presence of family. Which I consider rude and disrespectful of me and my valid opinions. Still, I’m glad I finally told the truth, at least I’ve opened the door towards a real, even if uncomfortable, relationship with my family.