I Grew Up Conservative And Christian, But Today, I'm Pro-Choice
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

I Grew Up Conservative And Christian, But Today, I'm Pro-Choice

From growing up in a strict Christian background to creating my own opinions in college, I have come to accept and respect all beliefs and decisions, including abortion, because I am not you, or her, or that family.

1937
I Grew Up Conservative And Christian, But Today, I'm Pro-Choice
Sarah Janelle

My immediate family is heavily involved in the Salvation Army. I remember going to the Salvation Army Pancake Feed every year and my grandfather going out to ring the bell in front of grocery stores. Often my family would hold "church" in our very own living room. I remember my father saying "it doesn't matter the building you are in, but that your belief is pure."

My grandmother, bless her heart, would say things like "clean hands and a pure heart will get you to Heaven."

The household I lived in as a child was very restrictive. Music and TV were heavily censored. I was only able to listen to Christian and Christmas music and never was able to celebrate Halloween. I did not get hooked on the "Harry Potter" or "Twilight" phases like every other child my age because I was not able to watch either series- they both had "too much" witchcraft.

I remember being young and believing in every little thing that my parents told me. My parents did not tell me things like the Tooth Fairy and Santa Clause were real. Instead, they let me watch the local news and talked to my siblings and me about what was going on in the world. I remember getting really interested in news-worthy issues right after 9/11. There was a report on the local news when I was seven or eight, maybe, talking about abortions. I asked my father what that word meant and like everything else, he was honest with me.

"Sometimes people want to kill their babies and they go into the mommy, while the baby is still in her tummy and suck the baby out like a vacuum."

He was not lying, that is what an abortion is. I remember going to school the next day and talking about the presidents and abortions to my fellow second graders. I remember thinking, "How could anyone want to kill their baby?"

By the time I entered high school, my parents had gone through a very serious and rough divorce and I started questioning my beliefs. Like America, my first high school was very diverse and filled with many different kinds of people. I befriended many people who had different faiths and upbringings other than of my familiar Christian beliefs. I remember asking my father what happens to people who do not believe in our version of God or people who "sin"? He told me something very profound, something that I choose to believe in today. "God judges you on what you know to be true and how well you treat yourself and others." The following year I transferred from a public high school to a private Catholic school.

I grew up Christian, not Catholic, so talk about your massive culture shock.

I felt like such an outcast there. It was a very small school and I am biracial, so I stood out. The kids would say racist things to me and I did not agree with the Catholicism. I questioned my theology teacher regularly. I got told time and time again that I had an attitude problem because I would not participate in the ritual aspects of Catholicism. Then I had a grand realization, Catholics and Christians both believe in a God but do things very very differently. I did not believe in what I was learning at the Catholic school, but I still believed I was going to Heaven. Then it hit me. What about Muslims? What about Buddhism, Judaism, and Hinduism? There are so many different religions, so many different interpretations and meanings of the same religion, that there is no way one ultimate answer.

When I got to college I was able to live, branch out, and explore so many different ideas and religions. I kept Christianity in my mind always, but I enjoyed so many ideas brought on by Buddhism and I was able to branch out my knowledge in science. Now twenty-four, I cherish the time my father said, "God judges you on what you know to be true and how you treat yourself and others." I choose to interpret that as, "Life judges you on what you know to be true and how you treat yourself and others." I substituted "God" for "life" because my "God" may not be your "God."

Everyone has different backgrounds, hardships, and circumstances but that doesn't mean we have to start showing less compassion towards someone because of this. We have to work together, we must coexist, and we must support and understand one another. That calls for a true separation of church and state. These fast pace abortion bans, like the one Alabama just passed, are using the idea that life starts at conception. That is fine if you believe that, but that is not everyone's beliefs. Passing laws under ones ultimate beliefs is discrediting and disassociating so many people and so many other faiths and practices.

I am pro-choice but not because I believe that abortion is always the right decision but because I am not you, or her, or that family. I am pro-choice because I acknowledge other faiths. I understand certain tragic situations (rape, molestation, and incest) and I believe everyone women and child should get to live their life the way they believe is true for them.

Report this Content
the beatles
Wikipedia Commons

For as long as I can remember, I have been listening to The Beatles. Every year, my mom would appropriately blast “Birthday” on anyone’s birthday. I knew all of the words to “Back In The U.S.S.R” by the time I was 5 (Even though I had no idea what or where the U.S.S.R was). I grew up with John, Paul, George, and Ringo instead Justin, JC, Joey, Chris and Lance (I had to google N*SYNC to remember their names). The highlight of my short life was Paul McCartney in concert twice. I’m not someone to “fangirl” but those days I fangirled hard. The music of The Beatles has gotten me through everything. Their songs have brought me more joy, peace, and comfort. I can listen to them in any situation and find what I need. Here are the best lyrics from The Beatles for every and any occasion.

Keep Reading...Show less
Being Invisible The Best Super Power

The best superpower ever? Being invisible of course. Imagine just being able to go from seen to unseen on a dime. Who wouldn't want to have the opportunity to be invisible? Superman and Batman have nothing on being invisible with their superhero abilities. Here are some things that you could do while being invisible, because being invisible can benefit your social life too.

Keep Reading...Show less
Featured

19 Lessons I'll Never Forget from Growing Up In a Small Town

There have been many lessons learned.

73388
houses under green sky
Photo by Alev Takil on Unsplash

Small towns certainly have their pros and cons. Many people who grow up in small towns find themselves counting the days until they get to escape their roots and plant new ones in bigger, "better" places. And that's fine. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought those same thoughts before too. We all have, but they say it's important to remember where you came from. When I think about where I come from, I can't help having an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my roots. Being from a small town has taught me so many important lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Keep Reading...Show less
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee
nappy.co

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

134499
college students waiting in a long line in the hallway
StableDiffusion

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments