Julie - posted on 12/17/2010 ( 19 moms have responded )
Hi, I'm just looking for advice on how to make some good christian friends.
I have been to my local church on and off for 30 years. Sadly, most of the people my age are shallow, rude and make me ashamed to be a christian while they claim that label.
There are a few exceptions, Some are decent people, but the short version is they are busy people and aren't looking to become close friends with anyone outside of their existing group and after years of trying to become close friends with them, I quit.
I have had some other christian friends who don't go to church, but in the end, it turns out every single one has had a reason they don't go to church. There are a few acceptable reasons - like my longest friend (of 25 years) who has serious health problems, but most have shown they really aren't christians and are not only poor examples of "christian" behaviour, but poor examples of human behaviour.
I have non christian friends, some of whom are great people, but they don't understand my life choices - why I don't have sex outside of marriage, why I go to church, why I tithe etc etc. My best friend is a wonderful great person, but it can be hard when she doesn't understand the biggest part of my life (my faith and the choices it leads to). Oh and it doesn't help that my best friend and many of my other closest friends live in another state, thousands of kilometres away.
I've been to other local churches, but there seems to be a huge lack of people roughly my age, and there also seems to be a lot of trouble with nastiness and bullying too.
I've recently started going to a church that isn't so nearby that has a few people who I've started to build friendships with, but it's hard when I can't go every week (I have health problems so have only been going to church about once a fortnight for the last 6 months) and in real life, I'm painfully shy and find it hard to first talk people, and then because of the terrible experiences I've had with so called "friends" in the past, even when I can talk to people, I find it hard to open up to them and even harder to trust them.
and it doesn't help that my daughter has autistic spectrum disorder (aspergers) and can be hard to manage at times and has a habit of alienating people who don't understand ASD.
I'm tired of "christians" who judge me for being a single mother because my violent husband demanded a divorce to marry one of his many mistresses after years of bashing me and eventually turning on our young daughter. I'm tired of "christians" who judge me by my looks - yes I'm overweight, it's caused by two medical conditions I have. I'm tired of those who judge me for not attending church rigidly every week, and only going to night services and not morning services, because that's all my health will allow. I'm tired of those who judge me for not having a spotless house and ignore the fact that I have serious injuries, I work in a physically demanding job because I'm in a mountain of debt my ex left me with and it's taken nearly four years to start getting a meagre amount of child support that doesn't even cover 10% of my daughter's normal expenses (and even less when you count that it costs me a fortune to send her to a christian school, and her extra expenses like counselling for her ASD). And those who judge me for my daughter's autistic behaviours.
I'm tired of all the shallow people in my life and it bothers me that the worst "friends" in my life are ones who call themselves christians usually. And it's so hard when my two best friends, one is sick and has become a total recluse and doesn't take calls or visits except on rare occasions, and the other is 2000km away.
I've joined all the groups for christian women that my health allows me to get to. Other than morning bible studies which I can't get to, there really isn't anything else. i've signed up for other groups, but often don't get the invite to events until after the events have finished. I do realise that it's just the slack attitude the church I've gone to most of my life has - they get wrapped so wrapped in chasing new people, that old ones often get accidently left out. I tried for years to get invites out to people that the organisers had forgotten, but now that I'm too sick to go every week to church there, I often don't get told til too late to go. There really isn't anywhere else in the area that has anything on for women under retirement age.
I don't know what else to do. I've had some really bad experiences with friends, particularly christian friends, and being a disabled single mother who is constantly sick and has a child with autism, I could really do with some support. I have all I could hope for in online support, but how do I meet decent people IRL?