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 Topic: Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion

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  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     OP - January 23, 2014, 05:16 PM

    I decided to start this thread after someone suggested we start one in Ex-Salafy’s thread about Religious Trauma Syndrome.

    As a convert who converted to Islam in my late teens, my experience will differ from those who converted either later, or earlier, in life or who were born into the religion. As someone coming from a highly dysfunctional family background, my experiences will also most probably differ somewhat from the person with a functional and healthy family background. My social, cultural and ethnic background, as well as my gender, affects my experiences as well. However, after spending my life as a Muslim for almost 9 years, 5 of those studying the religion in depth, and who self-de-radicalized about two years before finally being able to rid myself of the shackling Islamic faith, I think that my experiences will partially overlap with a lot of other converts and born Muslims alike. Hopefully, others can add their own experiences and view-points so that we can engage in a constructive discussion perhaps being able to help others.

    Here is my analysis and point-of-view on Religious Trauma Syndrome coming from an Islamic background. I do not intend to cover everything meticulously, but I will try my best to cover those topics that I feel are personally important to me. I am not going to reference with verses or hadiths when referring to Islamic theology or texts, but assume that the reader already knows them. Perhaps at a later stage, I could add the references if needed.

    Symptoms of Religious Trauma Syndrome:

    • Cognitive: Confusion, poor critical thinking ability, negative beliefs about self-ability & self-worth, black & white thinking, perfectionism, difficulty with decision-making

    I spent many of my years as a Muslim highly confused, drowning in the cognitive dissonance that was my existence. The black-and-white thinking and world view was always present, Islamic theology and doctrine teaches Muslims that the world is divided in “dar-ul-Islam” vs “dar-ul-harb”, it is a very “either you are with us or you are against us”-type of thinking. This thinking will create animosity between Muslim and other non-Muslims, and is one of the reasons why certain type of hate and violence thrives within Islam (for example, the salafi ideology, al-qaidah and their suporters as well as other groups such as hizb-ut-tahrir etc). I myself was fairly radical during a period when I even sympathized with al-qaidah doctrines. Islamic texts also highlights that Islam will be “divided into 73 sects” and that only one will lead to heaven. All this combined creates a deep rift between different Muslim groups, and especially between the convert and his/hers non-Muslim family, which will be covered later.

    Good Muslims should never question Islamic doctrine and beliefs that are “well established” or ask too much about the “mutashaabihaat”, which is the reason “allahu alam” is often heard or read when engaging in discussions with other Muslims. We are taught to accept Islamic beliefs at face value. The encouragement to “question and reflect” is actually deceiving, since the quran encourages us to ponder and reflect upon the “ayaat of allah” and not to question the very existence of god. So initially, especially non-Muslims and new Muslims, we are encouraged by Muslim scholars and the Muslim community to question and ask. But if you show signs that you are not accepting the simple and “clear cut” explanations given to you, you will very quickly be corrected to not “linger on the mutashaabihaat” or “allah knows best in the end” and that certain matters are part of the “ghayb” (unknown). Very often, the “we are not scholars”-card will be drawn. This means that certain opinions or doctrines that are seemingly contradictory or immoral are defended by explaining that scholars spent their whole lives arriving at this conclusion, and that it is not up to us to question it now because of “modern western ideology”.

    The fear to be misguided, and the theological belief that “allah guides whomever he wants, and misguides whomever he wants” contributes to the individual losing faith in one’s own self-ability and self-worth. We are nothing for allah, he can destroy us anytime he wants and replace us with another creation. And we can never be fully sure that we are guided, but just try our best even though it will never be enough. We must fully rely upon allah’s mercy, even though there is nowhere in Islamic theology that guarantees us that we are under allah’s mercy and guidance. We can do acts of the people of paradise our whole life, but since allah has already created us for either paradise or hell, just before our death we can do something that earns us eternal hell. The story of the old man, the three brothers and their sister and Iblees highlights this fact very clearly. A pious old man was tempted by Iblees to commit shirk and kufr seconds before his death. This raises questions and differences of opinions about determinism and whether or not we have free will at all.

    • Emotional: Depression, anxiety, anger, grief, loneliness, difficulty with pleasure, loss of meaning

    Before converting I felt depressed, grief and had no sense of meaning in my life. This was actually the reason why I frantically searched for god in my very confusing teenage world. However, after accepting Islam the depression and loss of meaning took other forms, which were exclusively formed by the Islamic belief system I had adopted.

    Firstly, the last two or three years of my Muslim life I felt deeply depressed because the Islamic code of conduct and morality repressed my own self and individuality as well as excluded me from partaking normally in society. This was because my way of dressing as well as all the “haram” and “halal” discourse and dichotomy prevented me from partaking in seemingly mundane and everyday activities such as work, school and social life. I had lost my sense of meaning and purpose because trying to fit into the very rigid and restrictive frame that I as a good Muslim woman had to conform to, I had lost myself. I woke up one day and realized that I was not a real person anymore; I was artifical. This realization was made even more difficult because I had been someone before converting, I had something to compare with. I once had my hopes and dreams, my personality and interests but all that was gradually destroyed because of Islamic doctrine and idea of “morality”.

    Secondly, my difficulty with pleasure was mostly felt during my most radical period which only lasted a couple of years. This was because Islam teaches us how volatile and temporary this life is, while “real life” starts in the after-life. This was a cause of constant grief and inability to feel pleasure and happiness when experiencing pleasurable or happy moments in life.

    • Social: Loss of social network, family rupture, social awkwardness, sexual difficulty, behind schedule on developmental task

    Traditional Islamic doctrine and theology highlights the importance of “good company”, which means nothing else but an exclusively Muslim social network. Interacting and forming friendships with non-Muslims is only legitimate if it’s for the purpose of da’awah. If a Muslim still keeps company with non-Muslims, he or she will most probably receive “naseehah” from other Muslims reminding him/her not to socialize with kuffar, in fear that one will be influenced by their bad and haram habits or their way of thinking and ideology just as being burned by a blacksmith. When I finally took the decision to don the hijab, and just 3 months afterwards the niqab, I lost all contact with my old friends. Before donning the hijab, I had gradually cut ties with all my male friends and most of my female friends who liked to “party” or “talk about boys”. When finally being a fully “practicing Muslimah”, I only had other Muslim girlfriends who were like-minded. Even other Muslim women who were more “moderate” or deemed “not as practicing”/”deviant” were not potential friendship material.

    Becoming more visibly Muslim was also the final blow to my family which ended in me being kicked out of my home and had all ties cut with my family. To back down and perhaps think that hijab was not as important as family ties was never an option, since obedience to god always came before obedience to the “creation”, especially if that creation happened to be non-believers. I was taught, with support from early Islamic history as well as religious texts, that I was going to be immensely rewarded and that god had something better in store for me. You must suffer and sacrifice everything for allah and Islam because we will not be able to say “I believe” and then not be tested.

    • Cultural: Unfamiliarity with secular world; “fish out of water” feelings, difficulty belonging, information gaps (e.g. evolution, modern art, music)

    Islamic theology teaches good Muslims the “Toobah for the ghurabaa”-way of thinking as I call it. This is essentially the belief that at the end of times, real Islam and pious Muslims will be so rare that people will perceive us as “weird” and “crazy”. Whenever you feel “fish-out-of-water” or a difficulty of belonging and feeling alienated, this should be something positive as it is a sign that you are “on the right path”. You lose all connection with modern culture such as science, art and music because it is either deemed useless or “haram” and immoral. Holding secular beliefs and convictions is also an impossibility, if you want to be a pious and devout Muslim, since “legislation if only for allah”. The “information gap” was also made extremely clear when I became a mother and realized that my child would be given a very narrow world-view if I kept to Islamic doctrine and theology.

    "The healthiest people I know are those who are the first to label themselves fucked up." - three
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #1 - January 23, 2014, 07:25 PM

    I wanted to add that as a result of only having Muslim friends and constantly surrounding yourself with only Muslim, it makes it extremely hard to leave the group. After leaving Islam I find myself without any friends or connection to the "outside world". This is something typically for sects and cults, and is used to indoctrinate and keep its members in line.

    "The healthiest people I know are those who are the first to label themselves fucked up." - three
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #2 - January 23, 2014, 07:32 PM

    I wanted to add that as a result of only having Muslim friends and constantly surrounding yourself with only Muslim, it makes it extremely hard to leave the group. .........

    THAT IS THE WORST THING IN LIFE if you are a boy.  And It gets worse if you are son of a Muslim whose wife is Not Muslim... 

    Do not let silence become your legacy.. Question everything   
    I renounced my faith to become a kafir, 
    the beloved betrayed me and turned in to  a Muslim
     
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #3 - January 23, 2014, 11:17 PM

    Very interesting and thought provoking.

    `But I don't want to go among mad people,' Alice remarked.
     `Oh, you can't help that,' said the Cat: `we're all mad here. I'm mad.  You're mad.'
     `How do you know I'm mad?' said Alice.
     `You must be,' said the Cat, `or you wouldn't have come here.'
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #4 - January 24, 2014, 03:04 AM

    This is exhaustive, perhaps you have covered everything but the delusional aspects, which probably fall under cognitive.
    The forgiveness of Shahada. The belief in Jannah, and the assurance you will get there, especially as after Shahada you have no reason not to attain it. Not enough lapse of time for sin to creep in.
    It creates all sorts of dissonance, being focused on the afterlife rather than this life.
    What are you looking for, in the way of contributions, as you mentioned in the other thread?

    Don't let Hitler have the street.
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #5 - January 24, 2014, 03:06 AM

    THAT IS THE WORST THING IN LIFE if you are a boy.  And It gets worse if you are son of a Muslim whose wife is Not Muslim... 


    I suppose it is true for converts then, too, as their entire natal families are often not Muslim. It is easy to feel your family no longer understands you.

    Don't let Hitler have the street.
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #6 - January 24, 2014, 09:11 AM

    It would be interesting to hear from born Muslims about their experiences. Even though many are shunned by their family when they become religious (I know a couple of them), they have a bit different from converts who lose their family when adopting Islam.

    I am of the opinion that all religions are just sects and cults that have been given legitimacy by the epithet "religion". So if we analyze the real ramifications of going 100%  Muslim, we can start seeing a pattern. It's "cultness" is being shown in broad daylight. Just yesterday I heard someone say "Islam isn't a cult, it's a way of life". I just wanted to hit him in his face, can you be so stupid?  Huh?

    "The healthiest people I know are those who are the first to label themselves fucked up." - three
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #7 - January 24, 2014, 09:13 AM

    Just been reading some anthropology and about gift relationships.  It seems for hundreds of thousands of years and everywhere around the world, our main way of doing stuff was by working together, giving people and gods stuff and receiving gifts back.

    It seems we have formalised stuff - mistakenly - in two directions, monetising stuff, so that instead of giving and receiving we buy and sell, and inventing very big gods, like Allah.

    So instead of working things out together, for example saying thank you to a door lock and key that continue to work properly (a ritual!) we have weird formal rituals about times of prayer and hajj etc.  

    Families which actually are founded on these co-operative, mutual ways, are corrupted with honour and inequality and violence.

    It wasn't perfect, with in and out groups, but we have institutionalised gods, created daft theologies and rules and the resulting massive damage described above.

    So instead of imposed rituals and rhythms and ways of thinking, why not work out ways of seeing and being that allow us to sing and dance together?  

    What does Islam think of jazz?

    When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.


    A.A. Milne,

    "We cannot slaughter each other out of the human impasse"
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #8 - January 24, 2014, 09:22 AM


    What does Islam think of jazz?


     Cheesy Cheesy  what a question to ask  moi.. Ha !  stupid  Islam  and  jazz., let us not put those two words together...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i3VWKEtkgBY

    Islam can not think anything outside of the stories of alleged Muhammad and those silly copy/pasted stories of Quran.   But..But Muslim folks are different., A relevant question to ask is

    What do Muslims think of jazz?

    Do not let silence become your legacy.. Question everything   
    I renounced my faith to become a kafir, 
    the beloved betrayed me and turned in to  a Muslim
     
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #9 - January 24, 2014, 11:32 AM


    What does Islam think of jazz?



    I'll be sure to ask islam what it's thoughts are on the matter the next time we meet for a drink.

    `But I don't want to go among mad people,' Alice remarked.
     `Oh, you can't help that,' said the Cat: `we're all mad here. I'm mad.  You're mad.'
     `How do you know I'm mad?' said Alice.
     `You must be,' said the Cat, `or you wouldn't have come here.'
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #10 - January 24, 2014, 02:42 PM

    instead of imposed rituals and rhythms and ways of thinking, why not work out ways of seeing and being that allow us to sing and dance together?  

    This is the way I try to live my life.
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #11 - January 24, 2014, 03:34 PM

    It's terrible that people still feel trauma and exclusion just for leaving a religion in the 21st century...
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #12 - February 02, 2014, 12:27 AM

    I can relate to so much of this.  I especially feel so isolated.  It feels like I'm stuck in some Islamic bubble, with every bit of non-Muslim influence locked out.  And feeling like I can't relate to anyone my own age at school.
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #13 - February 02, 2014, 12:25 PM

    Another thread here commented that the koran uses rhetorical tricks all over the place.  Was it designed as a mindf?

    When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.


    A.A. Milne,

    "We cannot slaughter each other out of the human impasse"
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #14 - February 02, 2014, 01:03 PM

    Good point. I can speak for myself, and even though I deep down do not have even a grain of faith or belief that there is a god, but when I read verses with threats and descriptions of how the disbelievers are "deaf, dumb and blind" with rhetoric tricks like "do they then not understand/ponder/reflect", my stomach turns. Not that I actually believe it, but the religious indoctrination is so deep and strong that it still affects me, and I hate it.

    The Quran regularly uses these types of rhetorical "questions" to make the reader doubt his or her own intellect or understanding. I think that it has a strong impression on a person who hasn't "made up it's mind" yet about the faith. I remember scholars boasting about what other book starts its very first verse with "dhalika al kitabu la rayba feeh, huda-lil muttaqeen". LIke, the Quran is so certain that you will not find any mistakes or contradiction or anything "questionable" that it's bold enough to claim this from the get-go.  In proper context, you realize it's utter rubbish.

    It's part of the "doubt about one's own self-ability", make sure to make the person doubt himself why you yourself are completely and utterly sure about what you have to offer.

    "The healthiest people I know are those who are the first to label themselves fucked up." - three
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #15 - June 28, 2014, 04:32 PM

    I was at my son's psychology appointment yesterday. The psychologist tells me, there is a free day camp for children in the community, by a lake, where they teach the kids to swim and canoe and fish. Totally ideal, except I know what camp she is referring to, and it is basically an introduction to Christianity with all these fun activities thrown in. I don't want my children indoctrinated into any religion.
    I tell her, a psychologist, that I want to be honest with my children at all times. That I do not want to gaslight them, it is the type of abuse that affects me the most. Gaslighting, for those of you who are not familiar with the term, means to mess with someone's head, by telling them things are not real, or convincing them that their perception of reality is skewed. Even moving objects and claiming that the victim has done it and forgotten, is gaslighting.
    She asks me ¨So, that's not okay?¨ Meaning indoctrination. I have no idea why she had to ask that. Perhaps she is Christian. Probably Christians do not see their religion as related to the other Abrahamic faiths. They probably see their particular sect as benign, many of the Christians in my area are peaceful folk who manifest their practice in charitable deeds. But though it has progressed to such a point, I see it like smoking.
    A gateway drug to cults, Islam, anything untrue. It still holds those cultures of shame and modesty, a twin evil I don't want my daughter subjected to, especially. Believing in delusion, no matter how popular, is not something I want to do knowingly anymore, and I do not want my children subjected to this. If they choose to worship a fairy in the sky, I will be okay with it, but I am not going to set them up for it.
    A psychologist. I don't get it. The other psychologist I see doesn't subscribe to religious fancy. I feel as if surrounded by crazies, after this. Why is there a trade off in communities like this? Give your children to us for brainwashing, and we will take them camping, swimming, etc. I am not paying that price. I would rather be the isolated atheist family, as I am.

    Don't let Hitler have the street.
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #16 - June 28, 2014, 04:40 PM

    Isn't there a scout group near you? All the camping and little to no goddy stuff.
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #17 - June 28, 2014, 04:50 PM

    Yes, the cub scout groups here have a parent attending with, when the children are small. I cannot afford to pay a babysitter that often.

    Don't let Hitler have the street.
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #18 - June 28, 2014, 04:52 PM

    Oh, and they are Christian and discriminatory against people who are not straight. So that's a bit risky.

    Don't let Hitler have the street.
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #19 - June 28, 2014, 04:54 PM

    Drat! Unless you take your others with you at the same time?

    Oh, and they are Christian and discriminatory against people who are not straight. So that's a bit risky.


    Ahh are you in USA? In the UK they have taken out the you have to be a believer in something part and are not homophobic.
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #20 - June 28, 2014, 04:59 PM

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-24434510

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/10930862/Scout-parade-with-a-difference-at-Londons-gay-Pride-festival.html
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #21 - June 28, 2014, 05:30 PM

    I found a childrens kiddies book today, my niece was holding it, it was entitled 'the camel and the evil people.'
    I was firstly concerned about the use of such a strong word on the cover of a kids book, the word 'evil'. So I picked up the book and flipped through it, and established that the 'evil' in this book were people who thought Islam was stupid and refused to believe mo's message. This was "evil"
    This is a childrens book! So on the topic of born muslims who realize reality, there is so much to overcome.
    Imagine seeing the world through such firm black and white colors all your life, the rainbows of reality are greatly confusing.

    I just hate the box world view Islam creates and I hate that in my family I can see all the naivety and close mindedness and to them it is all normal and to them I am the naive one.

    There is a lot I could write on this topic.

    "I Knew who I was this morning, but I've changed a few times since then." Alice in wonderland

    "This is the only heaven we have how dare you make it a hell" Dr Marlene Winell
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #22 - June 28, 2014, 05:33 PM

    That is horrid agno! People are so stifled by their beliefs!
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #23 - June 28, 2014, 05:54 PM

    Drat! Unless you take your others with you at the same time?

    Ahh are you in USA? In the UK they have taken out the you have to be a believer in something part and are not homophobic.


    Yes, I am in the US.

    Don't let Hitler have the street.
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #24 - June 28, 2014, 05:58 PM

    Ahh. I sees your issue!
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #25 - June 28, 2014, 06:12 PM

    Is it me or are converts more likely to end up in more rigid camp like the salafist. How does that happen. Do they come up to converts after conversion and tell them what 'real' Islam is or are they the ones who introduce them to Islam before conversion. When I was a muslim most of my friends where non muslim, I could not even think of using force on female family member or relatives if they stopped using hijab/headscarf. Also I believed in democracy, although I was no secularist, secularist would be able to freely compete against Islamic parties in a muslim country, and vote yay or nay on sharia (every 4 years  Tongue). And I had  good knowledge of Islamic law and was very much a devout muslim. All those things can't go with salafism and rigid groups like them, so they really make it hard on converts. And large islamic organization dont seem to care about that, f.ckers
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #26 - June 28, 2014, 06:21 PM

    I think perhaps the literature has a lot to do with it. Converts do not see Muslims much before conversion, normally. So they are converting to an ideal that they have read about, and apologist literature is far easier to find than accurate literature. The masjid where I converted did not have any kind of books in English that were NOT apologist. It was all soft Islam, claiming that Islam is in accordance with human rights and natural conservation and all sorts of rubbish. It is easy to dig deeper and deeper, as you get more familiar, and find yourself gradually more in line with conservative and rigid versions. Because you cannot argue against it. I had a book on the Sahaba that detailed no violent action at all. I think it was a set of two, actually. Imagine reading about a group of people who did everything right, and the only violence was heroic self defense. Persuasive stuff. Lying by omission is easy.
    So you convert to a fluffy soft Islam and find out that actually you are doing it wrong. God wants x, y, and z. Not soft and fluffy. You try harder. You end up conservative.

    Don't let Hitler have the street.
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #27 - June 29, 2014, 09:17 AM

    My experience is definitely not the same.  I think the biggest hang up I have, is that if being a woman in Islam.  That is the biggest trauma left within me.

    I wasn't a convert, and my most religious phase was quite brief in comparison.  I was also quite rebellious inside and so I never willingly let go of things like non muslim friends (although my violent ex just made those friends abandon me in the long run, I myself did not cut ties).  I didn't believe as other muslims did, and believed that all people were worthy.

    Even my muslim friends, other than my ex sister in law, were bad muslims.  I was often insulted for the choice of my friends.

    For me however the biggest psychological trauma inflicted on me was the life long, never ending reminder that I was nothing compared to a man.  It was a daily occurrence. Never ending.  If it wasn't be said, I could read it in Islam, if I wasn't reading it, I was observing it.

    Stuck at home as a young girl child, or stuck at home as a married muslim woman.  Watching the freedom the men had, the right to eat first, to have the best meat whilst we ate the left overs, and only after they had completely finished and vacated the area so we could then go and eat.

    I felt like I breathed in my inferiority constantly.  How could I ever find peace in Islam, no matter how hard I tried, even at my most religious, I was so unhappy because I wasn't a man, and I was/believed in a religion that didn't believe in my intelligence.  It made me doubt whether I honestly did need a second woman to back up my witness statements, because maybe I was too fucking stupid to remember.

    I feel like I spent most of my life back then battling an internal war, trying to accept my gender, and not feel bitter that allah had given so much to one gender and so little to another.

    I was more depressed over being me back then, than I have ever been since, and that is saying something, since I have been depressed since too.  Islam never gave me peace because to my mind, I would never be able to avoid going to hell, because I was a woman.  And what is more, even the idea of heaven, seemed like hell to me.

    To be married to my husband and part of his harem up there?  I actually felt serious dread at both prospects.

    Those sorts of feelings are still with me now, and have left serious damage within me.

    Another issue I would say I am left with, are sexual hang ups.  The belief, as much as I try to fight against that belief, that I am dirty on some level.  Unworthy and unlovable because I am not pure. 

    It is why I am single, and why I am likely to remain single since I am unable to trust that a man, is not a typical muslim man, who wants only a woman who is pure.  This belief that all I am is a piece of meat, and that anyone I meet, is only looking at me as the type of woman you sleep with, not the type you stay with.

    Of course I know that this is part of what Islam has left me with.  Sexual hang ups that mean sex leaves me feeling nothing but shame, but it's such a deep down belief, only appears when I am at my most vulnerable, and isn't any better than it was when i first left Islam.  It's on an almost primal level of feeling, bound to feelings of fear and fight or flight.  Overwhelming shame that I experience each time, and so choose to not experience it anymore by never taking those sort of risks in the first place.

    These beliefs were pressed in to me at every step through my history with Islam, from childhood, and into adulthood, and represent the psychological trauma I felt with Islam.

    On the rest, I never felt connected to the muslim ummah, so I lost nothing, I never felt a part of my family, so I lost nothing.  I never felt at one with the message, so again I lost nothing. 

    But I never gained a sense of a self as a female from the outset, so making myself into one since I left Islam, has been a hard journey, and still is. 

    Inhale the good shit, exhale the bullshit.
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #28 - June 29, 2014, 09:29 AM

    You reminded me of the guilt i am left with as an apostate too,  i cannot enjoy a single glass of wine or a night at a bar without feeling i have done something really bad, i have been out of islam for over five years and still i cannot enjoy alcohol, i havent considered having a boyfriend either because it makes me feel impure, like i'm supposed to be married, islam has turned me into a prude i guess so..   
  • Religious Traumatic Syndrome - discussion
     Reply #29 - June 29, 2014, 09:49 AM

    Berbella I can really relate to your post, I myself was similar to you in the sense of rebellion inside and not agreeing with all of islams rules

    I do wonder though, does leaving a religion make us selfish, in a sense that now a lot of us have to make decisions that hurt our families in the end. As a muslim family comes first, could it be said as an ex muslim we are more selfish and concerned for our own well being?


    "I Knew who I was this morning, but I've changed a few times since then." Alice in wonderland

    "This is the only heaven we have how dare you make it a hell" Dr Marlene Winell
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