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My son is half Laos and half white, I want him to have the choice, what should I do about pushy relatives?

Iwant my son to have his choice of religion when he gets older. I want to introduce him to buddhism and the bible. The problem is I do not know much about the bible. I don't have any interest in going to church and i do not believe in the bible but i can respect that others do. I have taken my son to the temple to get blessed by the monks and I found that to be a beautiful experience. I feel more at home with buddhism. But some of my relatives are pushing christianity onto me and telling me I should get my son baptised. They even whent so far as to take my son while I was out and baptise him themselves without me knowing or without my permission. They were pretty much saying " well, if you wont do it, somebody has to." I really want him to have the choice of who to follow, what do I do about pushy relatives?

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Asked by PhlyLuvzOwain at 10:39 AM on Dec. 19, 2008 in Religion & Beliefs

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Answers (13)
  • Tell them that maybe they can help teach their beliefs to him when you think it's time. But the moment they become pushy or try to say it's the only religion he should believe in then they're not allowed to teach him anymore.

    Let your relatives know that you respect their religion and you wish they would respect yours.

    Answer by amethystrse at 10:43 AM on Dec. 19, 2008

  • If it was me, after I found out they did that behind my back. I would never let those relative be alone with my son again.  And about the religion part of it. Do what you think is right . Don't let your relatives push you in one direction or the other


    Answer by louise2 at 11:00 AM on Dec. 19, 2008

  • "They even whent so far as to take my son while I was out and baptise him themselves without me knowing or without my permission." That right there would've been enough to sever ties with those particular family members.

    I DO have a suggestion that just might work well for you.

    I'm a homeschooler -- and in homeschooling, most curriculums are Christian-based. (Makes it a little more difficult for me... but hey, I do what I can).... but in YOUR situation -- where you don't want others pressuring you or him... you don't want to attend a church... and you want to KNOW exactly what & how your child is learning about Christianity --- you may want to look into purchasing a homeschooling "Bible Study" course. Then YOU are in control of your child's education in Christianity.

    PM me any time if you want to look into it... I can give you some references.  G'luck!  :-)


    Answer by Laura1229 at 11:07 AM on Dec. 19, 2008

  • What in the world?

    Your child was baptized WITHOUT you knowing about it?

    They had to: talk to their pastor, reserve the church, figure out what they were going to wear, figure out who was going to come, get an outfit for your child, lie to you about everything....

    Dude - that's INSANE. IN-f'ing-SANE.

    That's not pushy. That's crazy-time.

    I have no frame of reference on how to deal with that level of crazy. I do wish you the best and suggest you keep a close eye on your boy when he is with relatives.....

    Answer by Wimsey at 11:25 AM on Dec. 19, 2008

  • If you want him to experience both then contact some churches in your area and ask them for some info, explain what and why you are looking and hopefully you will find someone who will be helpful. Continue doing what are with your son and remind the relatives that you are his mother and are willing to let him experience both religions and that they should respect that. They obviously want to be part of his religious upbringing. If you are comfortable let them take him to church with them but within your limits. Tell them that if they can't respect your wishes then that will limit his exposure to what they believe.

    Answer by AmandaH321 at 11:57 AM on Dec. 19, 2008

  • There are a lot of churches that actually have busses that will come and pick up your child and take him to sunday school and bring him home after if you want to let him go to church with out you having to attend. I would say wait till he's 8 or 9 at least, though.
    As to your relatives baptizing him without your knowledge...I have to agree with the PP, that is insane, and beyond that, it is overstepping your rights as a parent by some HUGE, unfathomable to me, margin. I thought my family were religous nuts, but even THEY would NEVER do THAT! I'd not only limit his exposure to their brand of Christianity, I'd limit his exposure to crazy people who would do something like that!

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:54 PM on Dec. 19, 2008

  • I'm Christian but I think that it is wrong to take your son behind your back to do something that they wanted to do. Personally, I would of taken that as an attack.

    If you want to introduce him to Christianity (on your terms of course) you can buy him some children tapes/CD's with Christian stories on it. You don't have to go to a church but you can find someone (other than the crazy relatives) to take him to their service at church.

    Answer by floyd835 at 1:52 PM on Dec. 19, 2008

  • I can empathize. I am Catholic and my husband's father is Muslim. I teach my son to believe in the teachings of the Church but to respect other cultures and faiths. I hate to disappoint his grandfather, but my son's dad is non practicing and his dad spends most of his time in Egypt.

    Answer by mrsmostafa at 2:56 PM on Dec. 19, 2008

  • That was uncool of your relatives. Baptism is a very important Sacrament, and all the family needs to be on the same page. This is not something that can be "snuck in", and children are not pawns to be used in a game of family chess.

    Honestly? Expose him to both. Regardless of his baptism, the time will come where he will have to deepen his spiritual walk on his own - pushy relatives won't be able to do it for him. Explore different churches and different denominations. Being Eastern Orthodox myself, of course I'm going to recommend an Orthodox church. For him to make an informed choice, he needs to have that information. On both belief systems.

    Best of luck, sweetie!!

    Answer by Redteux at 5:03 PM on Dec. 19, 2008

  • I agree that it's great for him to know both aspects... we are also a multifaith family and want the kids to know the fundamentals of different faiths. I would begin by getting to know aspects of the Christian faith yourself so that you understand the basic tenets of the religion. That way you can take advantage of the teachable moments that come up as your son grows up. I really don't want to instill any kind of religious dogma, but try to answer questions as they come up... so they know the om sign over Gma and Gpa's door is for Hinduism, they know that the cross-legged guy on mom's dresser is the Buddha, they know the baby in the manger is baby Jesus. They are learning to basics here and there and can investigate any of those (or other) faiths later on when they are a little older and have more curiosity about it.

    Answer by Freela at 10:47 PM on Dec. 19, 2008

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