I'm estranged from my brother because of his warped version of Christianity. I think about it every day and wish that things were different. I've reached out to him so many times over the years and nothing has changed, and now I just don't care anymore.
5/17/14 11:53 P
5/17/14 10:57 A
Fitness Minutes: (11,285)
5/17/14 9:01 A
"Hi its my brothers wedding ...I just ASSumed that I was invited........YIKES "
My dh didn't invite his older sister (and most of his family) to our wedding 14 years ago. It had nothing to do with religion or me. It had more to do with how he felt they tended to behave (things like fighting in public). I don't know how she felt about not being invited. Dh and his older sister are not super close but not on bad terms either. If we were getting married today maybe he would choose differently.
It sounds like you may have some issues with your family beyond this event. That can be pretty tough.
There are certain evangelical sects that are beginning to exclude outsiders. I have a close friend whose brother married a woman whose family was very active in one of these churches. He told the family in December that he was going to get married the next summer, but by early June he still wouldn't tell them the date, place, etc. Six days before the wedding he told them the details and asked his brother to be a groomsman-- which the brother declined since there was NO time to get fitted for the suit (they would have to travel most of two days to get there.) He didn't help with hotel reservations, etc, and didn't give them directions to the rehearsal dinner (though he did expect the parents to pay for it.) The wedding ceremony itself was downright, openly insulting to his family-- the whole sermon part was about how the Bible tells a man he should turn away from his family if they're not Godly enough.
Needless to say, the relationship suffered. My friend's wedding gift to them was a donation in their name to a secular charity. His mom actually wrote him out of her will; there's not going to be much money but it was a matter of principle. It turned out that the wife's parents were really the ones who had orchestrated it all, but the brother certainly could have stood up to them.
About five years later the brother finally had enough and refused to have anything more to do with the church or his in-laws, and the wife actually sided with him-- she didn't cut them off, but she doesn't attend that church anymore. The damage is mostly done, though. His family will see him a few times a year and everyone's polite, but they don't go out of their way to invite him when they have casual, non-holiday get-togethers and they won't be helping him pay for his kids' college. Basically, he stopped being family and became an acquaintance.
All for a religion that he never really believed in and a congregation that NEVER did anything for him.
BACKNBUSINESS, obviously this is hurtful and unfair. But there's a silver lining. If a family member doesn't invite you to a major event like their wedding, they are releasing you from any obligation to them. You say that your brother frequently asks for help. Well, the next time he does, you can say, "I'm sorry, I don't feel like we're close enough for me to do that for you. I hope it works out all right," and hang up the phone.
And you definitely don't have to send a gift if you're not invited! If anyone makes you feel obligated, do what my friend did-- send a donation in the bride and groom's names to some non-religious but non-controversial charity. Here's a link to a list; there's one on there that could be controversial, but the other 9 are things that no one could object to.
And if it's any consolation, there's a very high probability that in 10 years or so, your brother is going to feel absolutely horrible about this. This type of unkindness haunts people. You'll get over it before long; he never will.
5/16/14 8:05 P
What else can you do but respect someone Else's wishes. You might not agree but, what can you do
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5/16/14 12:59 P
I guess you could say that I am intolerant of intolerance.
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5/16/14 12:50 P
There has never been any exclusion of anyone in my family owing to religion (or lack thereof in my case). Sometimes there are discussions, but we mostly let others go their own way.
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5/16/14 12:29 P
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5/16/14 11:57 A
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13,738 5/16/14 10:41 A
Yes, religion becomes an issue on a regular basis.
5/16/14 10:23 A
I've been excluded from things because I choose not to belong to an organized religion after a HORRIBLE experience in several churches based on how they treated my sister with disabilities. However, unless it's being rammed down my throat, I couldn't care less what religion a person is. Religion is something each person should decide for themselves and if a person is so stuck on that then it's on them. I wouldn't let it get me. I've known Mormon couples who've had weddings in certain churches that can only be attended by Mormons, so they had a more inclusive wedding elsewhere so entire families and friends could attend, then the more exclusive ceremony in the church. That seems to be a good compromise in that situation. Otherwise, they can't be that great a friend or a close family member if they're willing to exclude based solely on religion. This weekend I'm attending a Poonal for the Indian family I nanny for. It's a religious ceremony, and I'm thrilled to have been included even though I know nothing about it. What better way to learn?
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13,611 5/16/14 10:20 A
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5/16/14 10:04 A
My husband and I don't see eye to eye on religion. It's not an issue right now, but he believes it will become a problem when we have children. He doesn't like organized religion, I'm still lost, I don't know what to believe, I'm hoping to work on this. I plan to baptize my children, but let them make the choice of which religion they want to follow, and if they want to be confirmed or not.
Both our families are deeply Christian orientated, but we have never been cast aside for our different beliefs. His mom works in a church, I have a cousin who is a minister, and my dad serves on the church council. I guess if your family doesn't want you at a wedding because of a difference in faith, I would respect their wishes. Be the bigger person and send a card with a small gift. Is there a way you can discuss the issue with them, maybe just attend the reception?
Fitness Minutes: (74,165)
5/16/14 8:43 A
No. I embrace people of different faiths.
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1,351 5/16/14 6:46 A
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5/15/14 11:44 P
yes / family member
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5/15/14 10:41 P
I recently saw "A Night with Groucho". A comedy about the late comedian Groucho Marx. A memorable quote from the show was...Groucho took his family to swim in a swanky country club. The manager was in an uproar. He told Groucho that his "kind" were not welcomed and to get out of the pool. Grouch replied "My son is only half Jewish. Can he swim up to his waist"?
My mom told me once that I wasn't "really married", since I didn't have a church wedding. I replied, okay mom, that makes your 2 grand kids illegitimate, right. End of story. There are way too many guilt trips associated with religion.
Yes, religion has played a part in causing distance between me and family and friends. But like most things, t'is all water under the bridge now.
Life goes on.
Fitness Minutes: (105,772)
5/15/14 10:33 P
I've actually (distant past) hung up the phone on my sister because she was "grilling" me on what I did, chose, etc. Everything was black & white to her. And I felt "D@#$ if I did and D@#$ if I didn't" so why argue about it! IMO I really didn't owe her an explanation!
Interesting tidbit: just this week DH observed a couple who were "in a relationship" heatedly arguing over her view(s) vs. his view(s). ...and then they got into a car with a bumper sticker: COEXIST. Go figure!?!?!?
I've never been excluded, nor have excluded anyone, on the basis of religion or even general philosophy or beliefs... however, I did receive a very hurtful remark from an extremely close friend... and I'm sure he *meant* it in a positive way, is the sad thing. He told me, I "could be a good person if only [I] was (insert faith)". So that means what? I'm a louse because I don't share his perspective? I follow general "religious" morals and ethics probably better and more deeply than most of the people I come in contact with. I hold myself to a very high standard, and I live what I believe. My faith is right on the surface, not tucked away somewhere to be brought out for special occasions. It hurt to have him imply I'm defective because I don't share his views. I've mentioned that to him, lightly. I think he still doesn't "get it."
We spend too much time measuring and judging others. Is that what most religions promote? I thought I remembered reading or hearing somewhere that that privilege isn't ours to exercise. Am I confused?
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4,275 5/15/14 6:08 P
I'v e never been excluded from anything because I'm Catholic.
5/15/14 5:35 P
Thanks you guys ! I think I'm a good person and I try to help and be helpful even when I have my own things going on. Its a bad hand Ive been dealt as of late .........jeeeeeeeeeeeezzzzzzzzz.
Im learning that sometimes things happen for the best!!
Fitness Minutes: (8,135)
5/15/14 5:23 P
no, if we discuss it, it's only the basics, not really ever in depth, like it can be
5/15/14 5:22 P
Wow, sorry you family is so small minded. I mean, I'm the uber black sheep of my family, but to be excluded from a wedding, or birthday party or Xmas party? Kinda harsh.
You seem to have a good attitude about it, though :)
When the day comes (ha ha ha yeah, no gift for sure) - just send them a card, this way you are the bigger person, which you already sound like, anyway
5/15/14 5:16 P
Have not met sister-in-law to be... but my other brother who is the youngest and I happen to be closer to, could careless (he's just interested in partying)!
Edited by: BACKNBUSINESS at: 5/15/2014 (17:18)
Fitness Minutes: (43,065)
15,240 5/15/14 5:13 P
I don't think so. Although there are lots of activities that don't agree with my line of thinking, I don't judge people adversely because they don't agree with what I believe.
I do know that if someone who knows me is having a bachelorette party or other event and they are having a stripper, (or some other "entertainment" or activity I don't agree with) someone will tell me in advance so that I can be elsewhere during that time. They know that I won't judge them based upon their choices but they also know I'm not interested in taking part in that type of activity.
I wouldn't say so though we don't agree with what we consider some extreme views of one family in our family.
5/15/14 5:10 P
Not a devil worshiper. I spoke to my mom and she said that I should go to a particular website and read. In other wards it is taught that if you are not willing to accept then you yourself will not be accepted. Then why call me when you are in need of something? Doesn't make sense!
I am a melting pot and people who see me face to face often forget my diverse background. I have had people say things and have to eat their words when they remember who they are talking to. I find that the people who have the biggest bias against other peoples backgrounds are usually the first to cry discrimination against their own.
When people can't handle listening to another point of view, it's usually a sign that their beliefs aren't strong enough to back up...so they falsify info, or they keep harping on insignificant points.
5/15/14 4:46 P
I've a feeling there might be more going on with your brother? I mean, did you convert to Satan Worship or something? No offense to all of you Satan Worshippers!
Are you on the outs with your to-be sister in law?
If I weren't allowed to go to events where I wasn't part of the religion, I'd never make it to a church wedding/funeral. The family doesn't approve of my lack of belief, but it has never become a wedge between us.
OP - I hope you and your brother maybe can find a compromise? Upside - no invite, no gift?
5/15/14 4:36 P
JW ...not that close but I would never turn up a chance to help if he needed it ( and that seemed to be the only times he would call). I left home at age 18 and he is in his thirties and still lives at home so we are not the same). Just never thought that I would be banded from an occasion as this!!!!
5/15/14 4:29 P
You were excluded from attending your brother's wedding because you and he are not the same religion? What religion is he.....or don't I want to know?
How close are you to him?
5/15/14 4:27 P
" I was recently told that I could not attend a function because I was not of a certain religion"
lol...now I'm curious as to what kind of function you were excluded from! Details, please
5/15/14 4:25 P
Hi its my brothers wedding ...I just ASSumed that I was invited........YIKES
5/15/14 4:23 P
I hear ya! I am a bit perturbed by this I guess something's can't be answered!
Like a wedding or a funeral? I don't know of an instance where I was excluded from one of these type events because of my different beliefs. A family get together or a friend's barbeque held at a home or other secular venue? Not that I know of.
I have lessened or cut contact with people whose actions in the name of their religious beliefs were offensive or intolerant of others. They weren't people I was very close to so I probably wouldn't have invited them to much anyway
Fitness Minutes: (190,640)
5/15/14 4:04 P
nope, everyone has a right to their fantasy beliefs
5/15/14 4:01 P
I know that religion and politics are taboos I am not asking anyone to compromise themselves or make themselves feel uncomfortable! I was recently told that I could not attend a function because I was not of a certain religion JW and I am confused and hurt at the same time. Was just wondering if this is the norm in any religion or this is significant to this one.
No. I won't let another person's convictions and/or agendas dictate what I do so it's useless for anyone to try to make either religion or politics a polarizing issue in regards to me.
5/15/14 3:33 P
Have you ever been excluded because you aren't a member of a family member(s) or friends religion or because you use to be and aren't anymore?? Have you ever excluded someone because you are not of the same religion?
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