One day I threw all of my Christian Science notes, books and reference materials into the trash.

By Stacey, an Ex-Christian Scientist Group contributor.

I doubted early in my life but didn’t act on it. It would not have been tolerated by my family. I went through Christian Science class instruction to please my dad, but my heart was never really in it. It was in my thirties after my dad died that I was able to begin stepping away from Christian Science.

One day, I threw all of my Christian Science notes, books and reference materials into the trash and it was extremely therapeutic. I could have sent the notes back to my teacher because he is still active, but throwing them away felt better to me. The only thing I kept was the small set of Bible and Science & Health books that my dad gave me when I was very young. I couldn’t throw those away, yet.

I haven’t been to a Christian Science church service for twenty years now. My attendance had been waxing and waning (mostly waning) for five years before that, and then it became too depressing to go anymore. At that point, I took a stand and decided to never attend again, for my own sanity. It was also about that time that I read God’s Perfect Child by Caroline Frasier, which completed my deprogramming.

I have lost about ten friends from Principia…

By Stacey, an Ex-Christian Scientist Group contributor.

I went on a Prin Abroad my senior year at Principia College. There were four men and about twenty women. One of the men on the trip committed suicide a year after the trip, another died of measles three years later, and a third died about ten years later.

As you know, when you spend over three months with people, you get to know them well. I was shocked when the suicide happened, and I wondered if I had missed any clues. I don’t know if the suicide rate for Christian Scientists is higher than the average, but I think that reluctance or guilt in seeking medical treatment contributes to the problem.

I have lost about ten friends from Principia including a very good friend who had been sick for almost a year. I didn’t have a chance to tell her how much I cared for her since I didn’t know about the situation until after she was gone. There was no service. Those still in Christian Science just don’t understand how cruel this is to everyone else.

Two weeks ago, I went on the Prin Alumni online directory and found an email for the last surviving male on the trip. We have reconnected, and I am looking forward to more conversations with him.

My mother is still waiting for us to come back to church…

By Stacey, an Ex-Christian Scientist Group contributor.

My family was introduced to Christian Science when my mom’s uncle was in the hospital and was not expected to live—I’m not sure from what. Someone said they should try Christian Science. He got better and lived a long life. There were about twelve siblings in the family and there may only be one or two of the descendants that are still Christian Scientists. One of them is my mom.

The statistics show that approximately 1/3 of each generation stays in Christian Science. Looking at my family, and many of my Principia friends and their children, it is more like 1/4 or less that have stayed in the religion. Thank goodness, because it is difficult to deal with Christian Scientist relatives since you aren’t able to reason with them! On a related note, my mom didn’t allow my father’s brother and sister who were not Christian Scientists to come visit him while he was ill. They never got to see him again and say good-bye to him. To me, that is so cruel.

My mother is still waiting for my sister and me and all our children to come back to church. She thinks we will come to our senses eventually. I’d like to tell her we came to our senses when we left Christian Science. When I finally told my mom what I really thought about Christian Science, she was deeply hurt and upset by my rejection of my religious upbringing. She still tries to tell me about all our wonderful ‘healings’.

Our parents might not feel that it’s better for them to know how we feel, but it is definitively better for us. It’s not good for us to have to pretend that Christian Science is ‘the truth’ around them. It is healing to finally say what is really true in this human existence. In the end, being honest and seeking physical and mental help is a much better alternative to ‘CS BS’.

I am grateful for her kindness and pragmatism.

By Stacey, an Ex-Christian Scientist Group contributor.

My mom calls a Christian Science practitioner daily. She serves as my mother’s therapist. Fortunately, the CSP is a woman of reason and has encouraged my mom to not be so upset by this or that.

My mom has never met this woman, as she lives several states away. Of course, my mom credits every medically treated recovery her non-Christian Scientist family has—and that is everyone in the family—to her practitioner’s ‘work’! We don’t argue with her. Since the CSP serves more as a therapist/friend and is a very practical person, she is willing to help my mom no matter what the situation.

My mom was in the hospital a couple of years ago and in the ICU for the first few days. We didn’t think she was going to make it, but the treatment she was getting in the ICU pulled her through. When she was moved to a regular room in the hospital and able to think more clearly, she called her practitioner who supported her by praying for mankind, not for my mom specifically. My mom considers her recovery from this very serious issue a Christian Science healing and gives credit to the practitioner.

I don’t think her practitioner would ever admit to helping a patient who is on meds. My sister and I called the CSP at one point to let her know that my mom vitally needed her daily meds and to encourage my mom not to give them up. We believe that the practitioner did do this at our request. She probably didn’t know our mom was on meds until we told her. I am grateful for her kindness and pragmatism.