What do you do when someone lies?

This is going to be a short post but I’m looking for advice. What do you do when you know someone is lying?

I know this probably depends a lot on what they’re lying about. I don’t want to give a lot of details but it has to do with drama in my family. Someone said something untrue about me and I was so hurt I just distanced myself from everyone for about a month. But now I’ve come around and shared my side of the story and all I feel is anger.

I have no way of proving this person is lying. It’s really her word against mine and it’s affecting other relationships in my family.

I’m feeling pretty miserable and I’m hoping in time I can just move on. I shared my story and I don’t think there’s anything else I can do. I plan on limiting my contact with this person.

Any advice? Stories? Words of encouragement?


Well, there is one thing I can do — write poetry.



A broken boundary,
a broken reputation,
a broken heart –
my wavering respect for you
now rests in the rubble.
I’m choosing my health
over the unsupportive people
in my life.
There’s no meeting in the middle
with your venomous lies.
Your fangs punctured
my frazzled brain.
A morsel of truth
has yet to be found
in the space you occupy.
One day at a time,
then two weeks,
now five months –
my will is tough but trampled.
Never more painful
and never again.
Savor the bitter taste
of your own shortcomings.
Some relationships
just aren’t worth fighting for.

Pets and Emotions

Our house is pretty small and right now we have eight cats. We are constantly filling food bowls and cleaning litter boxes.

Back on Cinco de Mayo, my sweet little siamese kitty had five kittens. When they reached eight weeks, we started looking for homes for them with very little luck. One kitten went to a friend while the other four remained at our house. I’ve contacted local no-kill shelters and they are all full. 

The kittens have become a part of our family. We’ve named them. My six-year-old has handled them since birth so they are super friendly. They barely look like kittens anymore and every day we grow more attached. 

We have four other adult cats including the mother.

I really don’t know what we’re going to do but that’s not why I’m writing this post.

How much do you think pets understand our emotions? 

The past few months have been really difficult. I’ve been dealing with ups and downs in my recovery as well as some family drama. I seem to have formed a connection with one particular kitten. It’s like he knows when I’m upset or not feeling well and he comes and cuddles with me – sometimes for long periods of time. He really calms me down and I think it’s really interesting. I really want to keep him.

He’s even laying next to me as I write this.

How much does my kitten really understand? I know some people have emotional support animals and I can see how that would be beneficial. 

I’d love to read some pet stories. Do you have a special connection with your pet? How much do you think they understand about your emotions?

Deep (Rage Poetry)



Betrayal runs deep –
the toxicity in your veins.

You poisoned my outlook,
my family.

A painful breakdown
leads to an equally painful breakthrough.

Your lies define
your place in the universe.

When you stomp on my dreams
you only get your shoes dirty.

My future is mine –
you won’t have a part in it.

Thank you for showing me
when to walk away.

How do you view your parents?

There is something very childlike about me. My husband says it’s endearing. 

My eating disorder started when I was eleven years old, and unfortunately, eating disorders can stunt your growth both physically and emotionally. For me, I don’t know about the physical part. I’m very short, but so is the rest of my family, and I went through a normal puberty. However, emotionally I’ve definitely felt some growing pains. 

I always feel like someone has to be in charge of me, usually my husband or dad. I’m impulsive and decision-making can be difficult. I always feel I have to look up to everyone – I’m never on equal footing with other adults. 

My most recent round of treatment for my eating disorder really stirred the pot, and I feel like I was violently thrown into adulthood. I now see myself as an adult which has affected my interactions with everyone else.

This is most noticeable with my parents. I always saw my parents as above me – people who tell me what to do and someone I should work hard at pleasing. In a way, they could do no wrong. I didn’t question them. 

But now I see my parents as human. I see their emotions and flaws. They’re no longer above me. In a way, we are the same. This has led to some tension in my family and it really sucks. 

Has anyone else gone through this? How do you view your parents? When did you stop seeing your parents as parents and start seeing them as other adults? Do you consider them equals? At what age did you feel like an adult?

My 40th birthday is in two weeks. I’m sad that I spent so many years feeling like a child.

Not Christian But Going Along With Everyone Else

Has anyone else ever done this?

There have been so many times when I’ve bowed my head while people around me prayed or smiled and nodded when a coworker talked about god. Pretty recently actually. 

I was in a meeting last week with someone who explained they were going through a difficult time in their life and they were only getting through it because of god. I kept my mouth shut and didn’t make a scene to keep the peace. Nobody wants an awkward workplace even though it’s already awkward for me. Just nod and smile. 

Also, who wants to disappoint grandma?

I don’t want a confrontation. I don’t want to explain myself. I just want people to leave me be.

No matter how much my heart breaks, it is just easier to go along with it. Sometimes I speak my mind if I feel safe doing so, but that’s pretty rare. 

I can’t be the only person doing this. I imagine that a lot of people nod along not wanting to stick out. I mean, how many people really are Christian? Does anyone truly believe in that anymore? Are we all just going along with it?

There’s got to be people like me – maybe even thousands or millions – who just don’t want to be ostracized. It’s just easier to pretend you agree so people will leave you alone. 

Could you imagine if we could get an accurate head count of atheists in the US? There’s got to be so many more than we know. 

How can we flip the narrative? Can we make a pact – if one of us speaks up we all do?

Does anyone else feel this way?

Should I move? Is it time to leave my red state?

I live in a red state in the Midwest. It’s not ideal. I often feel like an outsider even though my family has lived here for generations. 

Sometimes people ask, “Why don’t you move?” Usually, I would respond, “because this is my home” but lately I’ve been wondering if a change might be good.

It’s just a thought – a fleeting one at that. 

I’ve been pretty staunch in telling people I’m not going anywhere. My family has been here since the mid-19th century (that’s a long time in the US) and I’m proud of that. Why would I want to go anywhere else?

But does this area today reflect my lifestyle, the things I believe in, and what I feel is important? Is there someplace that’s a better fit for my family?

I always say I want to make my home a better place. But is it worth the fight? 

My family immigrated from Germany long ago so, at some point, my ancestors decided it was time for a change and came to the US.

Is it time for a change again?

I’m really curious to get your thoughts. How do you feel about where you live? Would you move if you had the chance? Where would you go?

Also, where do you think I should go? What place is welcoming to a progressive couple in their 40s with a young child? I’d love to hear your suggestions. 

At this point, moving would be impossible financially speaking, but maybe it’s a thought I should keep in mind.

Staying Chill and Feeling Hopeful — What’s Your Method?

I’ve been through a lot of shit. We all have. I have been especially hard hit regarding mental health issues, but lately, many other stressors have been dominating my life. More responsibilities at work. Family conflict. Writing projects. Financial worries. You get the picture.

When I feel like I’m coming undone I usually turn to meditation with my mala beads. However, I feel I need some new ideas and I want to hear from you. How do you stay chill? Do you have a relaxing activity that you enjoy? Is there a breathing exercise that works for you? Budget-friendly ideas are a plus.

I’ve noticed I’m watching a lot of TV in my free time. I need to find a way to relax that doesn’t involve binge-watching shows on Prime and Netflix. While laying on the couch and watching TV can be very relaxing, it often comes with some guilt – like there are a million other things I could be doing. I know it’s okay to watch TV sometimes but this is too much and I feel it may be fueled by my recent bout of depression.

How do you relax yet stay motivated?

Another question – are you hopeful? Despite my mental health struggles, I’m usually a positive and optimistic person. It’s been waning a bit lately but I know it’s still inside me. I always feel something better is in the cards. Even on my darkest days, I realize that almost everything is temporary. 

So tell me – how do you stay chill and hopeful?

Gay but Won’t Act on It?

I want to tell you about one of my saddest interactions with a religious person.

I have a friend that I grew up with. He was a pastor’s kid. We met in middle school and stayed friends throughout high school. We graduated and went our separate ways and I haven’t seen him since.

When Facebook came around we reconnected. I really enjoyed reading his posts and was genuinely interested in what he was up to. He was always very unique with a somewhat boisterous personality. I always thought he was a great guy.

A few years back he came out as gay on Facebook. He said he knows this about himself however, he will never act on it because it’s a sin.

I was dumbfounded. He isn’t allowed to fall in love? What kind of god won’t let you fall in love? 

This friend works for a popular Christian attraction. (I don’t want to say what it is to protect his identity.) So I’m sure there is peer pressure.

The comments following the post were just as disturbing. There were many that said, “You’re such a good Christian!” I went from dumbfounded to pissed. I wanted to leave a comment. I thought for a while about what I might say but eventually decided not to say anything at all. 

It’s his life and I need to let it go.

Has anyone had a similar experience? Do you know anyone who is openly gay but doesn’t act on it because it’s a sin? I think that would be such a horrible and difficult situation. Would you have commented on the post?

Answering Some Journal Prompts on Faith

I was looking for some interesting writing prompts, and one particular blog post delivered: A Dozen Nonthreatening Journal Prompts on Faith for the Post-Religious, from Someone with an M.A. in Religion | by Amy Hartsough. I thought it would be fun to answer a few of her questions here.

Where does my true power come from?

True power comes from learning – from past experiences and interactions with others. I move forward either confident in what I already know or with a desire to learn more. Each experience builds from the last. I go into each new adventure with a lifetime of pain, joy, sorrow, and hope. 

Do I have friends from different religious backgrounds? Do I want to?

This is a hard one. Most of the people I’m around are similar to me although my inner circle of loved ones is very small. Do I want friends from different religious backgrounds? Sure, as long as there’s some mutual respect regarding the topic. However, I don’t think they would be close friends. 

Do I have a “sacred space” in or near my home? What does this space mean to me?

I would say the library. I’m at the library all the time – by myself to write but also with my daughter. In our community, the library is crucial. Toledo’s poverty is overwhelming and the library does everything it can to help out – including serving meals. Here everyone is welcome at the library and I can’t think of a space more sacred. To me, the library is peaceful and I am more productive there than anywhere else. To others, it’s a lifeline. 

Do I have more faith or fear about the future?

Believe it or not, I actually have faith in the future. This might sound horrible, but I feel with the condition we are in now (politically, socially, etc.) we will eventually bottom out and as someone who works in mental health, I know rock bottom can bring drastic change. I feel we will soon hit a point where there’s nowhere to go but up. People talk about leaving the US and I don’t want to leave. This is my home and I want to make it a better place. I really do feel our situation will improve.


There are several more questions that I might take a stab at a later time. These were just the questions that jumped out at me first. I really enjoyed her prompts. I would love to read your answers to the questions! Do you agree or disagree with any of mine?

Update on Writing Projects

I wanted to post a little update on my writing projects.

Freethought House, the publisher of my poetry book, was also going to publish my memoir about mental illness, recovery, and atheism. However, they recently had two people resign and they are no longer able to move forward with my project. I haven’t decided what I’m going to do with it yet. Maybe break it up and post it here or maybe find another publisher.

I recently submitted two entries to a short story contest. I rarely write fiction but I really enjoyed working on my entries. I am now convinced that I should spend a little more time working on fiction. Winners will be announced on October 31st and I’m currently looking for more contests to enter.

Also, I will be submitting my erotic poetry book to a poetry collection competition later this month. I have been working on this book for a really long time and this is the kick in the butt I need to wrap it up. 

I have been struggling with depression for the past few months and recently had a med change because of it. While I’m waiting for the meds to kick in, these writing contests seem to be the distraction that I need. I love to write and this is giving me something to work towards. I’m having a lot of fun with it.

As always, I am so grateful for your support. I will keep you all posted on my projects from time to time. Wish me luck with the contests!