I started as a Christian blogger, and obviously, I don’t fall under that category anymore. In the past year, I have written many posts, then deleted them.
My writing didn’t exactly make my former community look good, and I still deal with a lot of religious-related guilt.
“Remember who you represent”
This was a line that was drilled into my head growing up.
You represent yourself, your parents, your school, and most importantly you represent god.
You don’t make god look bad, period.
In my experience, the main culture of Christianity is about having a good image. You want to have the picture-perfect bible believing family that’s involved in church. It’s a plus if you can afford to send the kids to a private school. As an individual, you want to appear to be close to god, which means you never have your own struggles. Unless you have an exceptional community, it is hard AF to be vulnerable, be open, and you absolutely can’t ask certain questions.
As a professional, this mentality of being on your best behavior 24/7 has been helpful. I represent myself, my agent, my town, and print models all over. So I try my best to do that well, not just when I’m at photoshoots, but in my day-to-day life. In that regard, shout out to religious trauma I guess✌🏻.
Although I haven’t been to a physical service in years, I still feel the obligation to protect the image of the Christian church. It’s almost as if I subconsciously believe that will strike me down or something if I speak my own truth. The god of the bible doesn’t exactly handle their anger well.
My online presence won’t make someone a non-believer but maybe it could encourage some critical thinking, whether they agree with me or not. I am slowly coming to the understanding that I do not have to protect an institution that I no longer am a part of, believe in, or would be welcomed in. I should be able to be transparent about my lived experiences. Do I hate everything about my background? No. Do I only have peachy stories to share? Absolutely not. I have been silenced for so long because of the fear of causing harm, but this religion already did that and I’ve spent years processing the trauma and deconstructing it.
If your god or the community that you are in doesn’t allow you to ask difficult questions, or be honest, perhaps you should take a deeper look at where you are at.
Is it my intent to make everyone who stumbles on this site an exvengelical or atheist? No. I am just here sharing my thoughts and growth with the great world web.