Processing Guilt (a cross-post)

I recently made a post on this blog called “Forgive me, so I can forgive myself“.   Right after I wrote that, I was blog surfing the subject and came across a blog by John Shore called “Suddenly Christian”. His writing style is hilarious, and refreshingly non-judegmental from a Christian point of view.  (who knew?)  The post I stumbled into there is called, “An Honest Question: Atheists, How Do You Process Your Guilt?” . Great read if you’re interested (albeit VERY long).  I sort of caught on to the tail end of it and threw in my answer.  I hardly ever re-post my comments – but, I wanted to share here, what I wrote there, since it’s so relevant to so much other crap going I’ve been talking about lately.  (And, so I don’t feel the need to have to write anything else interesting today. =)
This was my post to that thread:

by samanthamj – September 24, 2007

Wow… this is a great thread! And I haven’t even read it all yet. Still, I felt compelled to scroll on down to the bottom and add my 2 cents. =)I have been on a bit of a guilt trip most of my life… and have even been recognizing that fact and asking a lot of questions myself about it these days. I was JUST posting on guilt, and similiar questions actually earlier today. Then I stumbled into here from the tags. (Cool site, btw.=)

So, how do *I* process my guilt?? Truthfully? Pretty poorly.  🙂 
I don’t think I do handle guilt or deal with it very well at all. I tend to prefer to let it gnaw at me in the middle of the night when I’m trying to sleep. And, I can feel guilty over just about anything… even things that aren’t my fault. So, I am just soaking up all the ideas on this thread on ways to better process it. (Except for the idea to “apologize and be humble”. As if?!  That will never work!)
(jussssst kidding! I apologize all the time! I’m sorry I’m sorry!).

Now, the thing is, I’m probably what you’d call “agnostic”… but, I use to be Christian.  I don’t think I processed my guilt well either way. Even when I believed whole-heartedly in God, and confessed and prayed away… there just seemed to be too much guilt for even God to deal with. I picture him rolling his eyes every time he saw me kneeling down.

So, really, I don’t know that I ever really felt truly forgiven or “guilt-free”.  Somehow, I don’t think I’m alone here. I gotta think there are many Christians that want to believe they are forgiven, but have a hard time really really believing that. I think, there are many good Christians that still question whether they will make it into heaven, even.

Then again, maybe it’s just me. I guess I’ll go have a glass of wine (that’s always a good way to start dealing with it), and hit the sack!

=)
~smj

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5 Responses to “Processing Guilt (a cross-post)”

  1. John Shore Says:

    Um … just to be clear: the post ITSELF isn’t long: it’s about 775 words. But the COMMENTS on the post, of which there are about 120, are pretty much … Bible length.

    Sorry, Samantha, but I won’t ever be able to visit your blog here again. I see you’ve used the word “crap” above. Too bad. Now I have to go wash out my eyes with soap. You damn PAGANS!!

  2. samanthamj Says:

    Ha! Yes… I said “crap”. You’re lucky I didn’t say shit. Doh! Sorry about that! Do you need more soap?? 🙂

    Being able to swear with a clear conscience is one of the advantages we Pagans have over you Christians… especially Christians with published books. Even I, Queen of Guilt, can at least swear without guilt. (Are you jealous?? 😉 )

    And, yes.. you are right… YOUR actual post wasn’t so long… it was all the comments on it that will take a day or so to read. Very interesting comments they were, though. I did notice that apparently I am one of the few (christians or non-chirsitians) that even seems to have a problem processing guilt. Or at least admits to it. ?? I was a amazed by (and jealous of) all the people that claimed they don’t really have a problem with guilt. Must be freaking nice! (notice I said “freaking” there…).

    Wait… why am I even answering you when you can’t come back to my blog ever again? Oh well… I sure hope the soap didn’t burn too bad… (and the guilt creeps in…)

    =)
    ~smj

  3. curiousc Says:

    I sense a kindred spirit here and will hold the urge to recommend some books to you so that we CAN be on the same pages! Quick point I mean to make is this: Great blog, very honest and brave, you have a sense of humor… I may not be an ACMIP or we all are?! but I suspect my parents(mom) really didn’t want children and has probably never really asked herself that questions. I digress. Great blog. Thank you. I’ll be lurking!

  4. samanthamj Says:

    CuriousC –
    Please feel free to recommend any books. I have been reading all kinds of interesting books the last year… learning all about things I never bothered to learn about before. Some of them have been very eye-opening. I keep thinking I should add a “book page” mentioning the ones I’ve read… and I’d be happy for suggested readings.

    Thanks also for the kind words. I am finding that many things relate to the ACIMP thing… but, that the ACIMP traits also have much in common with many dysfunctional family traits… regardless of what the dysfunction was. And, that there really isn’t many folks out there that CAN’T relate on some level to much of the negative things that I might have felt only applied to me. (did that make any sense??? LOL)

    Lurk if you want… but, join in when you can/want. =)

    ~smj

  5. Personalizing « Mom’s a religious nut & Dad was an atheist Says:

    […] hard on myself… or that I often over analyze and feel guilty over too many things. I’ve written about feeling “guilty” in this blog several times,  and even wrote a poem (or two) about it.  I realized a huge part of that guilt […]


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