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DD doesn't want to go to church any more

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jessicabenomi Sun 04-Feb-18 23:18:44

First-time poster here...

My three dd's have been coming to church with me every Sunday their entire lives (dh doesn't come).

It's increasingly being a struggle to get my eldest dd (aged 14) to come. She always says she has too much homework or she wants to meet her friends. Today after we got back she said that the youth Sunday school was so awful that she never wants to go again and she doesn't believe in God.

She's had one of these anti-church "episodes" (I know that's the wrong word I just can't think of another) every few years, but has always calmed down and come back to church before.

Am I being unreasonable to make her come with me? I don't want to force her if she truly doesn't believe, but my faith is so important to me and my church family have been so supportive at difficult times of my life. I just want her to have that support too.

PatriciaHolm Sun 04-Feb-18 23:20:18

You are more likely to push her firmly away from the church if you force it.

She's plenty old enough to know whether she believes or gets anything out of it.

georgeoutside Sun 04-Feb-18 23:20:41

Am I being unreasonable to make her come with me?


WidowWadman Sun 04-Feb-18 23:21:04

If you force her she won't believe any more than if you don't force her to go, but probably will build up resentment. Respect her wish to not want to go.

Bearwithverylittlebrain Sun 04-Feb-18 23:21:10

Let her choose. She is old enough to make decisions about her beliefs. I rearley go to church now but always know the support is there if I need it.

If you force her, she will likely resent you and the church.

OwlinaTree Sun 04-Feb-18 23:21:46

I think at 14 it has to be her choice tbh.

ClementineWardrobe Sun 04-Feb-18 23:21:47

Sorry, but leave her to it. She's fourteen, no way you can make/persuade her to go to Church. You may need to brace yourself for siblings following suit.

Brokenbiscuit Sun 04-Feb-18 23:22:13

Sorry, but YABU. 14 is plenty old enough to make her own choice. You need to respect her decision.

Snowysky20009 Sun 04-Feb-18 23:22:16

Let her make her own decisions. Just because church is important to you doesn't mean it is to her, and you should respect that.

honeysucklejasmine Sun 04-Feb-18 23:22:20

Don't push it. If she doesn't want to go, don't make her. And I say that as a church goer myself.

MrsZippyLake Sun 04-Feb-18 23:22:21

I am not religious but I am always very careful not to impose my views on my DC and to let them choose their own path. So I would respect your DD’s wishes; not least because if you try to impose your own views on her too much, she is likely to rebel more.

MyBrilliantDisguise Sun 04-Feb-18 23:22:25

I think the worst thing you can do is to force her to come with you. Your faith is your faith and hers is hers. I know it's upsetting for you but all you can do is have your own faith.

She will find her own support (and she has you and her dad anyway.) She has to find her own path.

And just as presumably you don't think less of your husband for not believing, you won't feel less of your daughter, either.

DonnyAndVladSittingInATree Sun 04-Feb-18 23:22:25

She’s 14. I think she knows her own mind by now. If she says she doesn’t believe in your chosen skyfairy then respect that. She has respected your belief for long enough.

Greensleeves Sun 04-Feb-18 23:22:33

You would be totally unreasonable to "make" her go to church if she doesn't want to. She is more than old enough to make up her own mind what she believes and whether she wants to attend public worship.

I expect to be flamed for this, but I think forcing someone to attend church against their will is spiritual abuse.

RavenWings Sun 04-Feb-18 23:22:48

Yes, you're unreasonable. Your faith is important to you, but it doesn't have to be to her. Maybe she'll be religious, maybe she won't - doesn't really matter.

A true Christian would want to let her find God in her own way.

LoniceraJaponica Sun 04-Feb-18 23:23:17

"but my faith is so important to me"

To you, but maybe not to her. At 14 she is old enough to make up her own mind. I agree with Patricia that you will end up pushing her away.

You will need to put your hard hat on because I get the impression that most posters hate any kind of organised religion and are pretty vociferous about it.

mcgoogleismename Sun 04-Feb-18 23:23:34

She is old enough to express her opinion regarding her beliefs, so no, should not have to ho to church. If the situation was reversed and you were living in an Atheist home, you would still have a right to attend church on your own without judgement.

If she doesn't believe, please respect her wishes.

Keepingupwiththejonesys Sun 04-Feb-18 23:23:48

I go to church on a Sunday, my husband doesn't (he's been a handful of times) . I take the children with me, all three are 5 and under so still young so different circumstances I guess. I never force them though, sometimes my 5year old really wants to come, other times she would rather stay home. Its her choice.

mumeeee Sun 04-Feb-18 23:23:51

Let her choose you'll just push her further away if you force her to go with you.

DrinkReprehensibly Sun 04-Feb-18 23:23:57

I was about 14 when I realised I didn't believe. Forced to keep going for a few more years but stopped as soon as I could and have never gone back. I'm afraid got can't make someone believe. It's too personal. YABU.

OtterInDisgrace Sun 04-Feb-18 23:24:22

Don’t make her go. It will make her kick back against you all the more and might make her resent religion because she’s been forced to embrace it.

At 14 she is definitely old enough to start thinking and questioning for herself.

She might decide to return to it or she might not. But it must be her decision.

DandelionAndBedrock Sun 04-Feb-18 23:24:32

Would she prefer joining you in the main church (assuming youth church is something separate)? Is that an option?

But no, you can't force her. She's old enough to decide (and also old enough for you to explain why it is important to you, but that you won't force her to go).

NotEnoughCushions Sun 04-Feb-18 23:24:33

Could you sit down with her and talk about how she is feeling and why she doesn't want to come to church any longer. You might be able to explain why being part of the church is so important to you but explain that if she really doesn't want to come then you will respect her decision.

At 14yrs I believe that she is old enough to make up here own mind. She may want to come back to church at some point in the future but I am not sure what you will gain by making her continue to attend.

Just a thought but would she be happy to come to the full service rather than Sunday School? Could you give her that option rather than her not coming at all? Could she come when she chooses rather than it being compulsory every week?

Exiguous Sun 04-Feb-18 23:24:40

Do you want her to believe in God or do you want her to have supportive friends? I'm confused.

WorraLiberty Sun 04-Feb-18 23:24:46

You hit the nail on the head there OP when you said, your faith is so important to you.

Don't make that your 14yr old's problem.

I say that as someone who was raised as Catholic and stopped going to church when I was 12. If my parents had forced me, it would have been completely pointless and miserable.

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