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I am sad that my children don't come to mass with me

(17 Posts)
gingerdodger Sun 18-Jan-15 17:20:11

Just that really. I am not looking for answers or anything to change this. They have just reached the age where this is not where they want to be on a Sunday morning. It's their choice and making them go is not an option or something I would do. I don't think it is that they are without faith either, just that it's not top of their list.

It doesn't stop me going, I've had a rough year and my faith has been a massive support to me.

I just feel sad when I see other families there all together and I arrive alone. DH is not RC or churchgoer so was usually just me and the children. I've lots of friends so I am not sat there alone but I just miss going with my family, it feels like another end of an era.

That is all. Just needed to express it.

Swex Sun 18-Jan-15 17:23:26

I'm Very sorry to hear they no longer r attend with you. But many people go through a phase of dropping out of church but then come back. I hope that's the case for your family.

gingerdodger Sun 18-Jan-15 17:24:55

Thanks Swex.

AuditAngel Sun 18-Jan-15 17:25:07

I'm sorry that your children don't join you. I expect DS will stop coming with me soon, he is 10 and doesn't enjoy coming. He is quite naughty during the service, asking every 5 minutes "how much longer?" Which really irritates me. He has the order of service, he has been going for 10 years, surely he can work out how much longer for himself. He also lolls all over me, he is too old to behave that way.

I find him harder work in mass than his 2 younger sisters.

Sorry, I don't have any solutions for you, but I agree that you can't force them. Keeping the pressure off will probably increase the chance of them returning at a later date

Middleagedmotheroftwo Sun 18-Jan-15 17:35:23

Is there a mass on another day at a more convenient time that they could go to? Or are they rejecting religion in total?

Ragwort Sun 18-Jan-15 17:53:20

I feel sad too that my DS doesn't want to come to Church with me anymore but I think it is something a lot of children/teens go through. My DS actually goes to a sort of Church youth club at a different Church so I am pleased he at least has some involvement. When I was a teen I loved going to Church and the youth group (my parents were not church goers - I made the decision to go on my own).

I think you have to accept it, but I share your pain. smile

BackforGood Sun 18-Jan-15 18:25:55

You don't say how old your dc are, OP, but, if teens, there comes a time when all teens need a stick of dynamite to get them out of bed on a Sunday morning and, attending Church just doesn't cut it, simply for that reason.
If they are younger though, is there not a Church you could attend where there are activities for them ? Mine have always wanted to come to Church with me, because they enjoy / have enjoyed Junior church so much - we only worship together for 15 - 20mins at the beginning, then they go off and do more active things for the next 40mins, or, once they get to Yr9, lounge around in comfy chairs chatting about stuff with other teens.

gingerdodger Sun 18-Jan-15 18:32:57

Thanks for all the replies. I don't think it has anything to do with mass timing to be honest, other times would be either earlier Sunday morning (haha!) or Saturday evening (which would interfere even more with social lives). Neither do I think they are rejecting religion, other things they do and say suggest otherwise. I think it's just normal. It just is not their priority at the moment. I don't expect to resolve it, I just feel sad that a part of my life seems to have come to a natural end.

Our priest has often said that he sees this with older children but he also frequently sees them return at key points, getting married, having children etc which, to be honest, was just the same for me.

Again thanks for all the replies, your friendly voices of sense much appreciated.

Marphe Sun 18-Jan-15 18:48:56

My DC don't come to church with me every week anymore and that's OK, their choice etc, but they did both come today. Every once in a while I put my foot down and tell them they're coming. Personally, I think it's good that occasionally they do something they don't want to because it makes someone else happy. They're 11 & 13, they'd rather not be in church but they don't hate it.

Koalafications Sun 18-Jan-15 18:56:10

I went through a phase when I was younger where I didn't want to go to church. I had recently lost a GP and didn't feel that it was 'fair' and couldn't accept that God would allow it. I know this is different to the situation you are in with your DC, but my DM just told me that God would be waiting and I could go back to church when I was ready. She ensured that I still upheld our Christian values day to day.

That way, I didn't see church as a burden and when I came to terms with my loss I was ready to go back. I think it was largely the DM hadn't forced me to go.

Could a similar approach work with your DC?

ScrabbleScrabble Sun 18-Jan-15 19:03:40

I'm sorry your children don't come with you any more, and I think it's really admirable you've taken them on your own up until now. That will have given them a fantastic grounding that hopefully they will come back to. It's great you don't feel they've lost their faith altogether too, I remember something in GCSE RS about private/public worship. And some idea that teenagers often reject church for a while, but explore their own relationship with God privately?

In terms of them coming, is there a Sunday evening Mass somewhere if they'd like to see friends of Saturday pm. Could you make it into a treat, go for pizza afterwards, that sort of thing? Could you discuss with them and say something like "I'd really like you to come to Mass, what's putting you off?" And see if you can work round their objections (time of day, length of service, would prefer different church etc).

Out of interest, how did your DC stop coming? Did they just say no one day? It would never have occurred to me to tell my mum I wasn't coming to church! I suspect she was just really strict and I was a bit scared of her... I have younger DC and wondering how I might deal with this without being a tyrant! I think your absolutely right not to "force" them but I wonder how people do encourage reluctant teenagers to go to church?

If it's just not an option that they come at the moment you might be interested in this:

http://www.mothersprayers.org

It's an organisation for mothers getting together to pray for their children and grandchildren. There might be a group in your parish (or you could start one?)
Apart from praying for your children, it would hopefully give you some support too, especially if you're now going to Mass on your own.

They actually have this quote on their homepage

'Stop your crying and wipe away your tears.
All that you have done for your children will not go unrewarded.
They will return from the enemy's land.
There is hope for your future.
Your children will come back home.
I, the Lord, have spoken'.

(Jer 31: 16,17) Good News Bible

Sorry that was long, (and sorry "enemy's land"sounds a bit strong!). I do think you've given them a wonderful base to come back to and sounds like this is very typical of teenagers who do later come back to going to church.

gingerdodger Sun 18-Jan-15 19:04:57

Thanks for the further replies koala I think that's a great point about making sure they always know they are welcome. One of my DC has been an altar server and still dips in and out of it. Our priest never blinks an eyelid. If they are there they are welcome on the altar, no judgement. Am lucky to be in a very tolerant and welcoming church.

Viviennemary Sun 18-Jan-15 19:07:02

I can see why you're sad. But I think you're doing the right thing not forcing them to attend. We have all fallen by the wayside in this house. sad

SauvignonBlanche Sun 18-Jan-15 19:12:54

I remember having a huge falling out with my DM about this when I was a teenager so was determined not to do the same with my DCs and have accepted that they don't want to go but I agree it is sad.

gingerdodger Sun 18-Jan-15 19:16:30

Sorry scrabble cross posts, thanks for your thoughts, really helpful.

The not coming crept up over time, started with clashes with other things, then just the difficulty of actually getting them out of bed which caused attendance to be sporadic and it just seems to have become less and less. I don't want to be dragging them after arguments to get them there, kind of seems to defeat the object.

They don't do a Sunday evening mass at our church but that's a lovely idea re pizza etc. Discussions with them go along the lines of there is nothing actually putting them off, they just have other things they would rather be doing.

gingerdodger Mon 19-Jan-15 13:34:47

Thanks for all your thoughts and kind words yesterday. They really helped.

Swex Tue 20-Jan-15 22:13:19

Glad we could help. Dread it happening to me as I want them to find the same love for it as me. Good luck

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