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Old 17.09.2019, 09:27
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Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

Good morning,

We have a much liked previously neighbour who has gradually become more and more religious over the years, now you canít even have a simple conversation with her without God and Jesus being mentioned in each and every sentence followed by a telling off for something or other. She has a daughter who is the same age as my eldest 10-11 , who is rapidly following her mothers path. They donít swim because itís exposing their bodies etc etc. I am a Christian, my husband is Muslim and our girls are being raised as Muslim with the main focus on God/ Allah and the principles of being kind to others etc etc. This neighbour has in the past tried to get our daughters involved in praying with them in a circle holding hands and when they declined she prayed for them loudly so they would hear that they were wrong , at this point we stopped our girls going there and eventually thought we had an understanding so we relaxed and everythingís as ok again. This woman is my friend .

But at my daughters birthday party last week she gifted her a Bible! With a blue tab for her to read , and embarrassed and upset her . I returned it very kindly to her daughter and explained that she doesnít need it because she has her own book the Quran and the child became a bit distressed and said it to teach her about Jesus to which I said gently that she follows Muhammad not Jesus.

My husband is really upset obviously , we live in the same building and see each other regularly - Iím going to be busy a lot now and so will my children.

Is she legally allowed to do this? Surely if she has been told itís not welcome itís not? My husband was ready to call the police but I stopped him.

Does anyone actually know ?

Many thanks
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Old 17.09.2019, 09:33
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

There's nothing illegal about it unless she was trapping your kids in the apartment while banging on about religion.

Tell them firmly to quit with the sermons or you'll just have to keep your kids away from the family. Can't see any other way out of it. Some people are bonkers when it comes to their religion, which is fine, but it's those that are incapable of keeping it to themselves which are a pain.
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Old 17.09.2019, 09:40
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

Thank you, before she wouldnít let them leave when the did the prayer circle. Thatís when we stopped our girls going there, it was last winter time. We Thought that the issue was resolved .
So basically itís probably best if we avoid them as much does possible. Sheís a single mum .
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Old 17.09.2019, 09:46
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

It would bother me as well but as you live in the same building try a positive path...at least at first. Maybe invite over, if possible, and try to communicate your side together with your husband and set some boundaries. I hope it works because if it does not it gets difficult as so far there is nothing illegal about it.
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Old 17.09.2019, 09:49
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

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Thank you, before she wouldn’t let them leave when the did the prayer circle. That’s when we stopped our girls going there, it was last winter time. We Thought that the issue was resolved .
So basically it’s probably best if we avoid them as much does possible. She’s a single mum .
Kids are quite resilient, though. My son has a friend from a religious family and when he goes there for dinner, they always include him in that pre-dinner quickie prayer thing round the table, which he good-naturedly takes part in, maybe because it would just be weird if he either stared into space while the others were doing it or just got stuck into his dinner.

They otherwise don't push religion onto him though.
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Old 17.09.2019, 09:50
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

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My husband was ready to call the police but I stopped him.
Call the police for what reason?

Giving someone a bible is not illegal.

Tom
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Old 17.09.2019, 09:51
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

Naaah...invite her over and prepare a table full of goodies, and then tell her you really care about her and have a gift for her. Give her the gift: a Quran.

I bet you'll never hear from her again.

Last edited by greenmount; 17.09.2019 at 10:07. Reason: typos
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Old 17.09.2019, 10:01
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

Not sure what to do. There's a lot of them here - especially children who seemed to be brainwashed, encouraged by the parents,, and from what I have seen, quite a few teachers.

These people are pretty persistent. It's difficult to tell them to stop - they probably won't.

I've noticed the same in the U.S. as well. It's difficult when you have to work with, or live along side these people - you can't just tell them to sod off.

As you mentioned, the children are 10-11 years old. Give it a couple of years and they'll be teenagers rebelling against everything - including religious indoctrination.
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Old 17.09.2019, 10:07
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

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Naaah...invite her over and prepare a table full of goodies, and they tell her you really care about her and have a gift a for her. Give her the gift: a Quran.

I bet you'll never hear from her again.
Too tame - pentagrams for the daughter
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Old 17.09.2019, 10:13
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

Of course, playing devil's advocate, if you think your neighbour is forcing her religion on your children, is that any worse than any adult (parents included) forcing their religion on children?

Religion is not something you were born with. Although not all DNA has been analysed fully, I think one could safely say there is not a "I love God" gene.
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Old 17.09.2019, 10:14
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

Whenever I've been given a religious tract, I've always graciously accepted it and added it to my library alongside all the other Korans, Books of Mormon, Bagavad Gitas and so on. There's no harm in anyone broadening their horizons.

The prayer thing is weird, though. I'd just quietly spend less and less time with someone so pushy. Life's too short to sit through another person's devotions.
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Old 17.09.2019, 10:25
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

One more thing, in CH kids learn a little about all religions, it's part of the school curriculum as far as I know. But yeah, they shouldn't spend time with this neighbour if she's so pushy.
I would treat the issue with kindness and discretion, and a bit of irony.
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Old 17.09.2019, 10:30
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

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Whenever I've been given a religious tract, I've always graciously accepted it and added it to my library alongside all the other Korans, Books of Mormon, Bagavad Gitas and so on. There's no harm in anyone broadening their horizons.

The prayer thing is weird, though. I'd just quietly spend less and less time with someone so pushy. Life's too short to sit through another person's devotions.
It's strange actually. Over the years I think I must have been gifted more than a dozen religious books. Several of them randomly be people who approached me on the street. I never took offence and always accepted them graciously and respectfully and have even referred to them at times (although these days it's far easier to use the internet when you want to find something quickly). If I arrange these gifted volumes by religion, the largest category would actually be Muslim.
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Old 17.09.2019, 10:32
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

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One more thing, in CH kids learn a little about all religions, it's part of the school curriculum as far as I know. But yeah, they shouldn't spend time with this neighbour if she's so pushy.
I'd question that. Unless my children have been asleep during these lessons.

While were on the subject, my kids' school recently got a new headmaster.

He wanted the year-start and year-end events to be held in the school hall rather than the church. He also wanted all crucifixes hanging in the school in public areas to be removed.

He's just been sacked!
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Old 17.09.2019, 10:33
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

People often retreat into the comforting arms of fundamentalism when they're unhappy, or mentally unwell. It's a very normal human response.

If you do address her directly, be sure to emphasise that it's the inappropriate proselytisation which bugs you, not the fact that she's a believer. The last thing you want is a neighbour who is convinced she's being persecuted for her faith.
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Old 17.09.2019, 10:35
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

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It's strange actually. Over the years I think I must have been gifted more than a dozen religious books. Several of them randomly be people who approached me on the street. I never took offence and always accepted them graciously and respectfully and have even referred to them at times (although these days it's far easier to use the internet when you want to find something quickly). If I arrange these gifted volumes by religion, the largest category would actually be Muslim.
That's been my experience too. Contrary to the stereotypes, I've found Muslim colleagues and friends to be much more keen on spreading the good word than anyone else.

I've quite enjoyed the chats, tbh.
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Old 17.09.2019, 10:58
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

It all comes down to respect and your neighbor isn't respecting the boundaries. Tell her how you feel and that if she can't respect that you don't want your children to be confronted with her religious views and practices, then the friendship will end.

If her religion comes before friendship, then she'll never be a true friend.
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Old 17.09.2019, 11:02
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

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I've quite enjoyed the chats, tbh.
Chats are a two-way conversation. I've had interesting chats about religious topics too.

The problem is when the speech is all one way and the other party is just not listening.
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Old 17.09.2019, 11:05
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

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The problem is when the speech is all one way and the other party is just not listening.
No, that must be the EF you're confusing it with.
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Old 17.09.2019, 11:13
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Re: Neighbour forcing her religion on our children. Legal????

Just wondering if it was really the OP's daughter who was upset at the gift or the OP herself.

Most kids I know gratefully accept any gift. Especially if it's a book with gold embossed stuff on the cover and silken bookmarks. Not that they would ever look inside, but that's a different matter. I don't think rejecting a holy book on the grounds that they already have one even enters a child's mind.

It's more the parents who get enraged about that.
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