I’m not a religious person, but I generally don’t have a problem with religion. What I do have a problem with is when people say they’ll pray for you. It just pisses me off. Instead of saying, “I’ll be thinking about you/I hope you feel better/etc” they are basically pawning off support to another being in the hopes that the being they believe in will fix you. I appreciate when people say stuff like “I’m sending good vibes/energy/whatever” because it may seem silly to some, but the concept is that they’re actively trying to help you. These are just my feelings as a non-religious person. It feels like a pressure to believe in their god, and I HATE that. Just tell me you care and will be thinking about me. Or maybe actually do something to help me rather than hoping your god will help me. Maybe I’m an a**hole. I don’t know. It especially bothers me when they know I’m not religious. Like, please respect my beliefs(or lack their of).
Psychogenic non epileptic seizure
Anxiety (Including GAD)
As a religious person I can say that in my heart I BELIEVE this is one of the most powerful things I can do for a person. When a religious person says this it comes from a really beautiful place. I pray for people all the time who don’t believe and I have no intention of converting anyone.
I had my doubts at one time so I get it.
my issue is that I don’t believe. So by someone saying they’ll pray for me, it means nothing to me. They’re better off saying nothing rather than offering something that I don’t believe in. It feels like a pointless effort on their part. Just say you’ll be thinking of me. To me, praying is like sweeping a dirt road. You’re wasting your time and aren’t being helpful at all.
I don’t often tell people I’m going to pray for them I just do it. I generally cook people a casserole if they are having a hard time. That’s just me but generally speaking they are just trying to be nice in their own way. It may not be your preference but I don’t think it should be taken negatively. I mean they could say a number of ugly things like, “good luck with all that”
I'm religious but I completely agree with you. When my mom was dying I got to hear way too much that they were praying for her and doing prayer circles and it never helped, especially because my mom wasn't christian (she was most likely pagan) but it was all christians doing this. I know it's hard for a lot of people like me to hear that sort of thing because you're right, it can definitely be a form of inaction while patting yourself on the back. I do pray for people, but I do it on my own without telling them because I realize that these prayers could easily amount in nothing, and my doing that isn't nessecarily a contribution to their lives. In working with my friends with a lot of their struggles and them doing the same for me I've realized there's no need to even say that, because I always think it's better to either ask directly what you can do to help or validate and support them generally their struggles, tangibly with your own words, not by outsourcing the work.
THANK YOU. This is exactly how I feel. I don’t pray, but because I grew up in church, there’s always going to be this little part of me that hopes god is real; so I’ll sometimes think like, hey god, if you’re real, please help this person. Doing nothing but patting yourself on the back is the perfect way to describe it.
Religion shouldn't be pushed like it is
exactly. I understand the sentiment behind “praying for me”, but I don’t believe in their god. I’m not interested in hearing anything about or related to their religion.
I completely validate the frustration with religion. I would say someone saying they’ll pray for me coming from a “religious” person versus someone that has a deep relationship with God feels so different. I kind of think of it like when someone says “you look good”. Some days I’m like ah thanks that’s nice and others I’m like wtf is wrong with you commenting on how I look, I don’t feel good and now I feel invalidated…like I’ve been so sick and barely able to eat but because you say I look good it’s supposed to make up for it?! But for me that has to do with how I’m seeing it and taking it. If it’s someone close to me and a pattern then it’s my responsibility to tell them I do not like to be talked to like this, I would prefer this and if that’s upsetting for them then there’s no point of me being around them because I’ll just be irritated and drained. Not all people that say they’ll pray for you come from the same place or background and to each person it has a different meaning. So it sounds like your only option is to clearly express to them how you feel disrespected by them saying this and it’s up to them if they want to keep doing that or not. As a Christian, and someone who doesn’t really like organized religion, I wouldn’t want you to feel disrespected, so I wouldn’t say it and I know me pushing my beliefs on you is the last thing that you need. At the same time if I said I’d pray that’s my thing with God and quite honestly has nothing to do with you so I would feel disrespected if you came at me for that because I’ve actually worked very hard to try not to hide my voice and beliefs anymore. If I know tho I’d say sending you love or something because it’s the equivalent of saying I’m sending this from God because that is where my love and good vibes come from. I’m not naturally positive lol so yeah that’s not my energy at all I’m sending people. If I sent my energy all around or to you that’d be so rude.
Quite honestly though this sounds like a much bigger issues than just people saying they’ll pray for you. What I heard from what you said is feelings of being disrespected, pushed, invalidated, like other don’t care about your thoughts, feelings, or beliefs… And it’ll keep setting you off until you get to the root and can heal it. And that sucks that you may be feeling any of those. Your feelings and beliefs matter even if others don’t agree with them. Sending you love…the world is a messy place.
Also if we keep going on analogies and someone gave me a casserole I’d be annoyed. I don’t like casseroles and can’t eat them and unless you put it in a take out tray then I have to wash it and get it back to you. And I gotta pretend like I’m appreciative even though something else just got added to my plate or I hurt your feelings by refusing and gotta clean up that mess too. The point is that people respond differently and what you like to receive others probably don’t, so if you want good relationship, it needs to be addressed on both sides.
Dude. I so agree. I get (some) people mean well but if they know you're not interested and they say it anyway, it is so annoying and can be frustrating. Sometimes I feel like saying - okay. good for you- bc, like you said, it means nothing to me.
I get this a lot from clients, I just say thanks bc it's not the time or my place to express my beliefs to them in those specific situations.
I am not religious and the family I interact with most aren't either, so lucky me. I'm sorry they say that to you, especially knowing you. It's disrespectful. I'm usually a- sending good juju your way- kind of person. I don't think it is fair for people to assume that everyone believes as they do, that it is comforting to people and that those comments are welcome, well-intentioned or not. It's simply about being respectful others.
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