Author Topic: "That's really not true" (religion)  (Read 5719 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

JeseC

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 339
"That's really not true" (religion)
« on: January 29, 2013, 10:22:23 AM »
(Why yes, my family could probably provide a week or two of fodder for this site by themselves!  Especially my mother.)

Anyway, here's a conversation I've had repeated a few times.

Me:  I'm interested in religion X. (Actually, I'm already religion X but haven't said anything because of these conversations.)
Mom:  But religion X believes <popular stereotype P>, how could you think that?
Me:  No, Mom, they actually believe Q, based on expert A.
Mom:  Don't contradict me.  The woman I used to know who grew up in that religion said they believed P.

 :o I don't really know what to say at this point!  If it were another issue I'd probably just bean dip at this point, but...well, one it's sort of an important thing, and two my mother can make bean dipping very exhausting!  It's the "don't contradict me" that gets me - I don't think I'm being rude here?

LeveeWoman

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 4048
Re: "That's really not true" (religion)
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2013, 10:24:36 AM »
(Why yes, my family could probably provide a week or two of fodder for this site by themselves!  Especially my mother.)

Anyway, here's a conversation I've had repeated a few times.

Me:  I'm interested in religion X. (Actually, I'm already religion X but haven't said anything because of these conversations.)
Mom:  But religion X believes <popular stereotype P>, how could you think that?
Me:  No, Mom, they actually believe Q, based on expert A.
Mom:  Don't contradict me.  The woman I used to know who grew up in that religion said they believed P.

 :o I don't really know what to say at this point!  If it were another issue I'd probably just bean dip at this point, but...well, one it's sort of an important thing, and two my mother can make bean dipping very exhausting!  It's the "don't contradict me" that gets me - I don't think I'm being rude here?

Why not just not talk about this with her?

JeseC

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 339
Re: "That's really not true" (religion)
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2013, 10:26:31 AM »
(Why yes, my family could probably provide a week or two of fodder for this site by themselves!  Especially my mother.)

Anyway, here's a conversation I've had repeated a few times.

Me:  I'm interested in religion X. (Actually, I'm already religion X but haven't said anything because of these conversations.)
Mom:  But religion X believes <popular stereotype P>, how could you think that?
Me:  No, Mom, they actually believe Q, based on expert A.
Mom:  Don't contradict me.  The woman I used to know who grew up in that religion said they believed P.

 :o I don't really know what to say at this point!  If it were another issue I'd probably just bean dip at this point, but...well, one it's sort of an important thing, and two my mother can make bean dipping very exhausting!  It's the "don't contradict me" that gets me - I don't think I'm being rude here?

Why not just not talk about this with her?

I'm not even really sure how I would approach it with her that wouldn't just lead to a giant breakdown and quite possibly splitting the family apart.  Especially with the whole "don't contradict me" thing in there, I have no clue how to actually explain things to her!

Hmmmmm

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 6097
Re: "That's really not true" (religion)
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2013, 10:29:05 AM »
Me:  I'm interested in religion X.
Mom:  But religion X believes <popular stereotype P>, how could you think that?
Me:  No, Mom, they actually believe Q, based on expert A.
Mom:  Don't contradict me.  The woman I used to know who grew up in that religion said they believed P.

continuing the conversation
Me:  Mom, I have been doing a lot of research on religion X and either you misunderstood your friend or she gave you bad information. 
Mom: Don't contradict me.
Me: I won't as long as you don't state incorrect facts.

Then don't talk about religion anymore. It is your choice.

WillyNilly

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 7490
  • Mmmmm, food
    • The World as I Taste It
Re: "That's really not true" (religion)
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2013, 10:33:26 AM »
Do you live with her?  if not, have the conversation in your own home.  And then say (calmly, firmly, the voice of someone who might be her daughter but who is also a confident, educated, self supporting adult) "don't you contradict me, not in my own home, not when you have no idea what you are talking about.  Your friend from 20 (30, 40) years ago was either wrong or your memory has failed.  Either way you can have a polite adult conversation about this or you can go home."

Then give her a moment to absorb that, because I'm thinking if you have the kind of relationship where she still says "don't contradict me" she's not used to you asserting yourself as an adult.

Then have some proof - some religious texts, pamphlets, an official website, etc - handy and say "here, you can learn more from this if you are interested.  But really I'd like to talk to you a moment about religion X."

And really you will need to tell her you have converted at some point.  You aren't going to tell her its your new religion fine, but then stop talking about it at all.  Talking about it abstractly is just passive aggressive, the topic clearly pushes a button for her.

Perfect Circle

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2953
  • The followers of chaos, out of control
Re: "That's really not true" (religion)
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2013, 10:33:54 AM »
Don't bring religion up if you don't want to have this kind of a conversation. It's probably the easiest solution.
In all this talk of time
Talk is fine
But I don't want to stay around
Why can't we pantomime, just close our eyes
And sleep sweet dreams
Me and you with wings on our feet

ettiquit

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1660
Re: "That's really not true" (religion)
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2013, 10:35:06 AM »
The "don't contradict me" would indicate to me that she's not open to listening to your reasoning.  I doubt I'd bring the topic up with her again.

Mental Magpie

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 4839
  • ...for the dark side looks back.
Re: "That's really not true" (religion)
« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2013, 10:35:55 AM »
I understand that you want to be able to discuss this with your mother, but it looks like you just can't because it won't go like you want it to go no matter how hard you try.

As for the "don't contradict me" line, I have a feeling she says this about a lot of things, not just religion. There are a few things you can say after she says that to you about any subject.

"So I'm not allowed to think for myself and ever disagree with you " (I actually said this once, and my mom sputtered. She never did say it again...then again, she never said it often anyway.)

"I will stop contradicting you when you stop being wrong." (Pigheaded? Yes, but sometimes you have to be to get you message across in these situations.)

"Stop saying things that aren't true and I will stop telling you that you're wrong."
The problem with choosing the lesser of two evils is that you're still choosing evil.

Dalek

  • Jr. Member
  • *
  • Posts: 85
  • Am not amused!
Re: "That's really not true" (religion)
« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2013, 10:40:14 AM »
Your mother seems unwilling to change her opinion of this religion despite the evidence she's given. This is a subject you just won't be able to discuss with her.
I don't want to live on this planet anymore.

JeseC

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 339
Re: "That's really not true" (religion)
« Reply #9 on: January 29, 2013, 10:45:23 AM »
Don't bring religion up if you don't want to have this kind of a conversation. It's probably the easiest solution.

I'm trying, but...well, I'm not the one that's bringing it up, and my mother is extremely resistant to bean-dipping.

Lynn2000

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 4152
Re: "That's really not true" (religion)
« Reply #10 on: January 29, 2013, 10:48:07 AM »
Your mother seems unwilling to change her opinion of this religion despite the evidence she's given. This is a subject you just won't be able to discuss with her.

I think this is the best solution. OP, could you give examples of how your mother brings it up? In your first example the conversation was started by you, so maybe that's why several of us think the easiest thing to do would be to just not start.
~Lynn2000

Slartibartfast

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 11475
    • Nerdy Necklaces - my Etsy shop!
Re: "That's really not true" (religion)
« Reply #11 on: January 29, 2013, 10:49:43 AM »
her: "Don't contradict me!"

you: "I only contradict you when you're wrong."

her: "But I'm your MOTHER!"

you: "And I love you, but that doesn't make you infallible.  Your friend was mistaken - I've done quite a bit of research about this, and [stereotype] is just a stereotype.  It's not part of the teachings at all.  Anyway, [true aspect of the religion] really interests me, and I'm doing research to find out more about whether [religion] something I could be a part of."

Perfect Circle

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2953
  • The followers of chaos, out of control
Re: "That's really not true" (religion)
« Reply #12 on: January 29, 2013, 10:50:18 AM »
Your mother seems unwilling to change her opinion of this religion despite the evidence she's given. This is a subject you just won't be able to discuss with her.

I think this is the best solution. OP, could you give examples of how your mother brings it up? In your first example the conversation was started by you, so maybe that's why several of us think the easiest thing to do would be to just not start.

Exactly.

You still don't have to engage. You can make non-committal noises if she won't let go of the subject. Sometimes we can't change how others react or behave, we can only change our own behaviour.
In all this talk of time
Talk is fine
But I don't want to stay around
Why can't we pantomime, just close our eyes
And sleep sweet dreams
Me and you with wings on our feet

Mental Magpie

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 4839
  • ...for the dark side looks back.
Re: "That's really not true" (religion)
« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2013, 10:55:08 AM »
Just because your mother starts the conversation, you don't have to answer; you don't even have to bean dip. "I am not talking about this with you" repeat ad nauseum. You can even add "because you never hear me when I do" if you'd like.
The problem with choosing the lesser of two evils is that you're still choosing evil.

Virg

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 5873
Re: "That's really not true" (religion)
« Reply #14 on: January 29, 2013, 11:09:07 AM »
JeseC wrote:

"I'm trying, but...well, I'm not the one that's bringing it up, and my mother is extremely resistant to bean-dipping."

She can't respond to silence.  If she brings it up, change the subject.  If she persists, stand mute or proceed with your conversation change as though you didn't hear her at all.  Her comments and her statement of "Don't contradict me" indicate that she's not interested in a dialogue, so don't try to make her statements into a dialogue.  Saying nothing after the initial "I'm not discussing this with you" is the best you can hope for at this point.

Virg