Parents who force their children to follow the Catholic religion can sometimes have the opposite effect. I would know because I am a product of one. For 12 years, I went to three Catholic schools. 1 was co-ed, the other two were all girl schools. Then for another 4 years, I went to a co-ed Catholic university run by priests. For my first 12 years in school I was forced to learn prayers, go to mass, have confession, and participate in our religious practices. However, I was always an inquisitive child. Teachers didn’t like it when I would question why women couldn’t be priests, what was wrong with pre-marital sex and homosexuality. They don’t want to hear opinions different than their own. Ironically though, Catholic and Religion classes were always my highest grade. Heck, when I was 12 years old, I even wanted to be a nun once upon a time until my paranoid mother said that she won’t allow it cause I’ll never see her again once I enter the convent.
I never liked going to mass. I find it dull and boring that I have to sit, stand, and kneel for a an hour, listening to a bunch of prayers I didn’t feel, singing the same songs over and over, and saying ‘peace be with you’ and ‘also with you’ like a robot. The entire thing just feels so mechanical and forced. For more than a decade, beliefs and prayers were shoved down my throat even though I didn’t believe or want them. When I was a child, I was part of the Glee Club. Every week, we would sing and practice songs to sing for mass. One time, Nickelodeon went to our school to put on a show for us. There was a program going on in the auditorium but our club wasn’t allowed to go. Our teacher told us that we only had Glee Club once a week and we should dedicate it to God. We should’t be so selfish. Please understand that I was only 8 years old and marginally pissed. All I wanted to do was watch The Wild Thornberry’s on stage but this woman wouldn’t let me. That was the first time I experienced being forced to do something I didn’t want because of religion.
Then there is their view on premarital sex and contraceptives. I have a friend who is one of those crazy Catholics who follow EVERYTHING the Bible says. Every time I visit her, she berates me over my sexuality and ‘lifestyle’ choices. Her face when I told her I was no longer a virgin was akin to killing her dog. I’ll admit it was hilarious but also quite annoying. She believes that engaging in casual sex was like making myself cheap. Excuse you, I believe the reason was such a pressure on women to till marriage to have sex is because men are afraid of raising kids not their own so they want to break their wife’s hymen and be sure. When I told her I used contraceptives, apparently I’ve killed the baby already. What in the actual fuck. Wanting sex is perfectly human and doing it before marriage is not a sin. Marriage is a choice and there are rules there that some people refused to be caged by (such as the sexist rules that favour one sex over the other).
Second is what they think of homosexuality. This same friend claimed I wasn’t a lesbian if I had sex with men even though I very clearly explained to her that I did it just to confirm my suspicions. No, I do not like dick and no, I am very clearly gay so please don’t insist otherwise. Catholics hate gay people, period. I was lectured by a priest that being gay isn’t wrong, it’s the act of gay sex that is wrong. I call bullshit on this. Sex is a perfectly natural thing to want, married or not, homo or hetero. Homosexuality has existed since time immemorial (Greeks, Romans) and the social stigma only started when the Black Plague started wiping out people and gays had the highest rate of HIVs and sexual diseases. Then there is gay marriage. Gay people are entitled to the same rights as everyone else. I think what the Catholic institution fails to realise is that we are not just after the sanctity of marriage but the benefits that come with it – adoption, insurance, considered next of kin, and stability. Maybe gay people wouldn’t push so hard for this if they provide an alternative with the same benefits. After all, not all gays are Catholic. But this is just my opinion.
Third is that this religion is anti-women. I refuse to enter a religion that is completely run by men. It’s patriarchal and unfair. Let’s face it, though there are women serving the Church, they don’t hold as much power and influence. The roles women have are supporters and I refuse to believe the story of creation. If we were really equal, then God would have created Adam and Eve together, not provided Adam a wife just cause he was bored and lonely. Then there’s the fact that the woman is the one who caused the sin and every other woman for the rest of eternity will pay for it via childbirth pain and other punishments bestowed on us. Unless women get equal representation, I will stand by my belief that it is a sexist religion.
I do believe in a God so please don’t call me an atheist. There is someone out there who created us, and we all have souls. I just don’t believe that God and Jesus, the ones who all Catholics are supposed to idolise and worship, are male and white (Jesus in particular. Seriously, all his pictures look like a white guy). And I also question why God is always addressed as male. I didn’t question this until Third Grade and I stumbled into a book that described the story of creation and addressed God alternatively as He and She. I was a confused but enlightened little girl. I realised that God isn’t only male. God can be female too. Catholicism is outdated and they need to move on and adjust with the different beliefs. The only thing constant after all is change and if they don’t, they’re gonna keep losing followers.
P.S – We are all entitled to our opinion and beliefs so whether you agree with my post or not, I would appreciate it if you didn’t turn this post into a religion warfare.