I would remain silent but I believe sometimes silence can be read as acceptance. This isn't for me for I've already made my decision to not return the church from whose leaders did this. But instead it is for future people like me who enter.... it is not acceptable nor right for a church to limit any one place in the church for the reason that they are immature, psychologically crippled or anything of the sort. I am absolutely appalled by the behaviour of the leaders of this church. I know that you believe it was for my betterment but truly you are blind to the fact that it was in fact not Christ-like to keep me from fellowship.
You said I was welcome for worship. But truly what does the whole boundary from fellowship truly say? I was not welcome. I understand where you were coming from and I commend your concern for me. But it isn't about fixing me, nor about helping me. If truly you wish to help them you went about all wrong. If you truly wanna help those like me here is where you begin;
1) don't come in, aiming to fix us. Believe it or not just cuz we are psychologically imbalanced doesn't we are impaired. We are fully capable to work on ourselves. We do not need fixing, we need open arms and ears.
2) Open your ears and shut your mouth. If we need advice we'll ask for it. Mainly when we come we just need compassion and open ears. We want a soundboard to bounce off of, not a mechanic... again we do not need fixing we are fully capable of fighting the battle. We just need a friend here as we fix ourselves.
3) don't panic and push us out of your community because you think you can't help. Believe it or not you are hendering the recovery by doing this. Scarring exactly where the church has scarred us before time and time again. Again we weren't looking for a mechanic. We were looking for open ears and open arms. We are fully capable to get through this, just not alone.
4) we aren't defects. We are human beings with strengths and weaknesses like everyone else. Casting us out because we can't connect with certain people is ridiculous. As there is no one person who can connect with everyone in a group no matter if they have a chronic mental illness or not.
5) We are not unable to mature. We only mature at our own pace. The best way for anyone to mature at all is for them to be placed in situations that we can learn from. The best places for that is meeting people they may have not been previously able to connect with and learning how to do it.
6) don't treat us like a ticking time bomb. We aren't gonna hurt you. We aren't all dangerous. We aren't much different from you. We just want to belong, to be treated with respect, and to meet people who give us that respect and are welcoming.
Well, there you have it! That's my two cents. Take it or leave it. But I do hope you learned SOMETHING from it!
Luceo non uro,
Ari Joy Schaffer