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Author Topic: When You Live with Your Parents  (Read 4628 times)

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bluefire

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When You Live with Your Parents
« on: September 05, 2009, 11:57:54 AM »

How to learn, grow, practice your path when you live with your parents and they are not accepting of paganism is a topic that comes up regularly in pagan message boards.  I thought I'd share some of my ideas around that, in the hopes that these thoughts may help some folks.

You can study paganism without shouting it from the rooftops.  This is different from lying.  It is about exploring your own spiritual beliefs from the inside before taking it to the outside.  How do you experience the Divine?  Every person on this earth asks themself this question.  You can explore that question yourself without villifying the religion your parents raised you in.  What is calling you to the new path?  Is it wanting to dress a certain way you perceive to be "witchy"?  Is it wanting to perform spells to solve all your problems?  Is it identifying with a character on TV, in the movies, in a video game or a book?  Those solutions are about shouting it from the rooftops, not about exploring a spiritual path.  Be real with yourself and being real with the rest of the world will come easier.  The link to Religious Tolerance Org is posted here in Pagan Journeys.  That is a good place to start.  Learn about various beliefs and put in some serious thought about what seems real to you.  The Wiccan Rede is posted here in Pagan Journeys.  Read it.  Many times.  It is a great starting place for not just Wiccans, but many pagan paths.  Meditate.  Allow the Divine to speak to you in whatever silence you can find in your own mind.

Labels are odious.  Early in your path, you do not need a label.  You may never need a label.  Declaring "I am Wiccan," or "I am pagan" can #1 limit your own study and #2 put you in a box that is an easy target for those who do not understand.  It also challenges you to study, learn and live something that is real and not just act out of what you perceive it to be.  Fill in the inside -- your beliefs and how they manifest in the way you live your life -- before you coat the outside with a label.  That way, if you choose a label, it will be the right one that fits you, not the wrong one you are trying to fit into.

You do not need fancy tools to perform rituals or spells.  The "stuff" of ritual is very fun.  The symbols on altar cloths speak to us.  The wands and athames can be beautiful.  There is no doubt to that.  And there is time for that.  But common household items can be used ritually.  In fact, rituals can be performed totally in our minds and no tools are really required.

Let your life speak for itself.  If becoming pagan is a matter of dressing in black, decorating your room in pentacle art, and speaking rudely of the faith you were raised in, you will get resistance AND miss the point of following the path.  If you find a greater connection to the Divine, grow in appreciation for the Wheel of Life, and find satisfaction and some sense to where you fit in the world, the stage is set for meaningful conversation with others about what you believe.

Bottom line.  If you live with your parents, respect them.  Your new path may be very scary to them.  Make it easier to open up meaningful diaglogue by knowing what you believe and why.  They may never accept it.  But maybe they will.  You give them a fighting chance by being real inside yourself.

Edited to fix typo.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2009, 02:01:20 PM by bluefire »
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Fox

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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2009, 01:00:03 PM »

Beautiful post, Blue!  Thank you.

I think you can take any of what you've said here and apply it to anyone on a Pagan path, no matter where they are on that path, how old they are or if they live alone or with other family members.  Wonderful, wonderful advice.
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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2009, 01:57:46 PM »

Yes, a most awesome post.  Thanks for sharing your thoughts sis. :warmfuzz:
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dragonspring

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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2009, 02:40:31 PM »

That's great advice BF!   :loveheart:
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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #4 on: September 08, 2009, 01:49:16 PM »

 :thankyou:
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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #5 on: October 15, 2009, 01:21:45 AM »

That's a good article bluefire. I live with my parents and I definitely don't shout my religion from the rooftop, but i'm open to them and respect their religion.
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Quotensilence

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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2010, 11:47:24 AM »

Thank you so much Blue. This is more helpful then you may realize. My dad was raised Catholic and although he doesn't really go to church anymore, he's still rather religious. My mom doesn't go to church at all, but still believes in God. I tried to tell her that I was interested in Paganism and Wicca and she flipped out. I love this path and all that I'm learning, and yet I can respect my parents and their beliefs as much as I want, but unfortunately they may not respect mine. I guess that just comes with the territory....
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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2010, 11:06:41 AM »

I love this path and all that I'm learning, and yet I can respect my parents and their beliefs as much as I want, but unfortunately they may not respect mine. I guess that just comes with the territory....

Your parents may not accept your path, but they can still respect YOU.  That is what we all want in the end, yes?  No two people on earth agree on every subject.  The challenge we face is to still connect to that part of others we can connect to, even when there are gaps.
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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #8 on: April 14, 2010, 03:21:42 PM »

Excellent post! My question runs a little deeper, and maybe those wiser than myself could help here. I only recently exited the broom closet with my parents, and unfortunately, that was over the phone. (Not fair to them, I know, but they live 10 hours away, and I won't see them for several months, and I felt they deserved to know about this major change in my life.) Since that very stilted conversation, there hasn't even been an akward pause... But my new faith doesn't come up, ever. I certainly don't want to "shout it from the rooftops", as BF mentions above, but it is a part of my life now.

My wife suggested mentioning it every other conversation or so, just mentioning a topic I spotted on witchvox or even something as simple as "I gotta go to the coven meeting now, talk to you later," so that it at least becomes common in the conversation and there isn't this audible wince from the other end of the line from my mother. I agree that I don't want or need to rub their noses in it, but any ideas how I can ease them into this so I don't feel the need to jump back in the closet every time the topic is near, especially since they refuse to bring it up themselves?
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Tirya

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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #9 on: April 14, 2010, 03:32:47 PM »

In general, how often does religion come up in your conversations? Do your parents talk about how their church service went, or about their pastor/minister/rabbi/etc? To me, going "out of your way" to mention it - even with the best of intentios - is rubbing their noses in it. If it comes up in conversation, then talk about it. If it doesn't, then do't feel like you have to frce them to accept it. Let them know that if they have questions you'd be happy to answer them. Let them know that you're happy with your choice, and live the best example that you can so they don't have to worry that some "devil worship" is going to turn you into some blood-sucking fiend. Just my $0.02...
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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #10 on: April 14, 2010, 03:48:05 PM »

I agree with Tirya.  If religion is something that is routinely discussed, it would be appropriate to bring it up.  Otherwise, it sounds rather like evangelizing to me.
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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #11 on: April 14, 2010, 07:10:54 PM »

I agree with what's already been said. If there are times you feel you really want to tell them something about your coven or something you've been thinking about re. religion, then by all means tell them, but it will probably come across as forced if you bring it up just for the sake of bring it up to acclimate them to it.
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SuzanneSilvernight

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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #12 on: January 20, 2012, 06:22:55 PM »

I came out of the proverbial Broom Closet just now to my mother and her only response was "We'll see" and "I don't want any of the propaganda in my home" and then the awkward silence began. Sometimes I wish she was more understanding
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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #13 on: January 20, 2012, 08:54:24 PM »

I came out of the proverbial Broom Closet just now to my mother and her only response was "We'll see" and "I don't want any of the propaganda in my home" and then the awkward silence began. Sometimes I wish she was more understanding

Considering the potential extreme reaction ("Demon child, I banish thee!"), I think a "We'll see" isn't at all bad. Believe me, I was long out of the house, and with a child of my own when I finally exited the broom closet with my parents and my dad still scoffs at my beliefs and my mother is still uncomfortable over a year later.
Maybe she'll come around, maybe she won't, but while living with your parents, it's best to remember that you are still under their roof. They can't force you to believe or not believe anything, but they're still feeding/clothing/sheltering you, so if they ask you to keep it out of their sight, it's best to do so unless they bring it up.
Honestly, I'd lay low for a couple months, let her get used to the idea on her own. Just my $0.02
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SuzanneSilvernight

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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #14 on: January 20, 2012, 09:01:09 PM »

@Karma thanks for the advice I really appreciate it
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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #15 on: January 21, 2012, 04:48:17 AM »

Silver... This path we walk is soft, gentle, and slow.
Be who you are, and just BE.
I have many in my life who know of my practice, and many who still don't (after 13 years).
I am a firm believer in those who need to know, will know. My personal rule is to "educate" by not to "defend".
If someone is authentic is their interest, I will take time to answer questions and maybe share some experiences. If someone says "I don't believe in that stuff!", I honor their right to no believe.
I don't try to convince anyone... it just isn't their "time" and it isn't my job! And it really doesn't have any bearing on what I believe or how I choose to act based on that belief.
I think the best testimonial for anyone walking this path is to be gracious, treat everyone (and everything) with compassion and kindness, be aware of our planet and honor it's resources, and leave this place better that when we arrived. I call this "being part of the solution". I think if we all do this, it really doesn't matter who (or what) we worship, or what label we put on our personal spiritual journey.
Be yourself, and be the "best" yourself that you can be.   )0(
 
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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #16 on: January 21, 2012, 09:35:31 AM »

It can be hard living with ones parents.  When I was first started reading about it I had to hide all of my books, my one sister said before that she looked into the path and found it wasn't for her and encouraged me to look into it but be careful because my parents burnt her book that she had.  Though my mother did see that I had tarot cards and she went and talked to a priest (she works at a catholic university) and he told her that I was opening the doors to the :devil:
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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #17 on: January 21, 2012, 09:59:14 AM »

There's a demon behind every bush.  :rolleye:

My patron Goddess is hated by the Christian. Really, really hated.
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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #18 on: January 21, 2012, 10:33:28 AM »

My patron Goddess is hated by the Christian. Really, really hated.

Christians not liking an empowered, sexually aware female figure? Surely you jest!   :rotflmao:
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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #19 on: January 21, 2012, 01:12:22 PM »

 :rotflmao: 
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Re: When You Live with Your Parents
« Reply #20 on: January 21, 2012, 01:25:12 PM »

My patron Goddess is hated by the Christian. Really, really hated.

Christians not liking an empowered, sexually aware female figure? Surely you jest!   :rotflmao:

I know, right?  :rotflmao:
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