another coming-out

So I came out to my entire family at the dinner table last night.

As a heretic, I mean.

My mom had been told that the reason my graduation announcement wasn't going in the church bulletin was because I was not a member (we'll call my parent's church Terabil Presbyterian, for future reference). She and my dad had been under the impression that I had transferred my membership from the old church with the rest of the family. I reminded them that I was the only one that hadn't done so, and when told that my mom would just tell them to go ahead and sign me up, mentioned that I hadn't joined on purpose because I wouldn't have been able to sign the Westminster Confession of Faith due to not believing in predestination.

Given her boggled and defensive reaction to what's really a pretty dry piece of doctrine, I'd hate to think of what would have happened if I'd mentioned my various other reasons for not jumping on the Terabil Presbandwagon-- the fact that I don't believe in premillennial dispensationalism, their disavowal of women in any positions of authority outside the nursery and the kitchen, and oh yes, the fact that I hate going to church. After having Ephesians something or other quoted at me I just said "Look, the reason I disagree with you isn't because I haven't thought about it. Give me a little credit here."

I'm not even really going to get into it here because frankly, I don't think it's that big a deal. Suffice it to say that I think the entire predestination-versus-free-will is another example of "looking through a glass darkly," and I find it more beneficial to me personally to view things through an Arminianist lens.

My dad didn't really say anything. Which is amusing, considering he's a deacon and is oathbound to keep his family toeing the Christian line, if I recall his ordination correctly.

It's something that's happened before when we were out at a barbecue restaurant for Ignatius' birthday, and he was asking me what I thought about the current crop of presidential candidates. I was saying "Well, I like Obama's idealism, but I also like the fact that Edwards has a health care plan--"

"Ooooh, not EDWARDS!" quoth Mother. "He's a TRIAL LAWYER. He'll put doctors like your father out of business!"

"... anyway. I'm not sure what to think about Hillary, because--"

"Pfft! HILLARY! Don't you know that--"

"Hey Mom! How about not interrupting me."

Mom looks offended. "I was just participating!"

"Uh, no, you were being rude and talking over everything I tried to say. Are you going to let me finish a sentence now?"

There was this fascinating little bit here where I sat and stared at her, waiting for her to answer, and her face went through three distinct expressions. First, she sort of snickered at me, like there was no way I could really be serious. When I kept staring, she sniffed and looked around, like I couldn't possibly expect her to answer that question! And when I continued to stare, she got an angry expression, because I, the disrespectful child, was daring to disrespect her authority. And then, she just started to sulk, because you know, she HAD been interrupting me and I wasn't letting her get around it.

This is especially funny because she'd recently gotten angry at my dad for interrupting and ignoring HER when SHE tried to speak.

I'm just sayin' it would be nice to have my opinions respected once in a while, instead of being treated like everything I think is just belated teenage rebellion.

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thus saith Liadan at 3:41 AM


Anonymous Anonymous saith at 7/08/2007 2:39 PM...  

Wow. And I can picture your mother going through those facial contortions quite clearly. :P

Blogger Brucker saith at 7/09/2007 10:58 AM...  

Oddly enough, I can't help but be a little jealous that you have a family that cares that you're a "heretic". Of course, it clearly has numerous drawbacks, but I have a hard time masking the fact that I'm so bored with my family's Unitarianism.

Blogger JJ saith at 7/10/2007 12:42 PM...  

Mother's truly are marvelously strange creatures, aren't they? Must be something about giving birth that changes brain chemistry. My own mother is convinced that any time I disagree with her on any point it is because I want to disagree with her... not ever because I have my own independant thought. It's very frustrating. She once accused me of pretending to be gay to get back at her (she never specified what I would be getting back at her for).

Blogger Fever Dog saith at 7/10/2007 4:58 PM...  

"it would be nice to have my opinions respected once in a while"

oh, sorry? you were serious?

Blogger just me saith at 7/22/2007 4:46 PM...  

I wonder how many coming out's there are in life sometimes.... Nice blog. :)

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