A man searches for meaning. Our therapists can help you navigate faith crisis and faith transition near Houston, TX.

Faith Crisis or Faith Transition Therapy

Are you feeling conflicted, misunderstood, or confused about a faith or religious organization that once brought peace and comfort? Maybe you have questions or concerns you wish you could work through in a confidential, non-judgmental, unbiased setting. Perhaps you, a partner, or a family member are making a change in your religious practice, and you need guidance on how to navigate a new dynamic. Our therapists can help you and your loved ones move forward authentically and confidently.

A crisis of faith can come at any point in your life. Maybe it is the first moment you leave home and are responsible for maintaining your beliefs but find yourself questioning what you were raised to believe. The loss of a loved one, loss of a job, financial or relational struggles, global disasters, the ending of a significant relationship, or a terminal medical diagnosis can all contribute to questioning religious or spiritual beliefs. Some people question their faith when they find information about a religion's past that does not “sit well” with them. Perhaps you have a family member who has not felt welcome due to your religion’s view or treatment of LGBTQ+, females, or other minorities in the community. Sometimes, religious and scientific research may be in conflict and can create doubt. One may question one's faith for various reasons, and every reason is valid!

A crisis of faith can feel isolating to the individual experiencing it. There are often many values and emotions that conflict with each other. Clients may struggle with expectations and pressure from their support system. “How do I tell my parents that I no longer believe?” or “My wife married me because she felt I would be a strong spiritual leader for our family. What if she decides to leave me?” Often, individuals risk losing their support system or their financial security if they vocalize their doubt or leave the religious organization. One may feel stuck and hopeless, as well as pressured to put on a mask to perform the “part” you were taught to play. Losing or questioning your faith can feel like losing a close loved one. There was safety and security in the belief. One client said, “Trust me. I WISH I could just still believe. It was so much easier when I did. I wish my family understood that this is not just a choice that I am making because I no longer want to live that lifestyle.”

Clients' reactions to a faith crisis often mirror grief and are clinically treated in a similar way. We start by addressing the hurt, anger, doubts, and fear often accompanying the faith crisis. We will explore options to help you find answers. As a counselor, our role is to help YOU identify your emotions and values in conflict and help you determine the best course of action for your life. The process can be scary and isolating, but you do not have to experience it alone. Our empathetic therapists will support and guide you through the process of discovering your most authentic path.

What is a faith crisis?

A faith crisis refers to a period of questioning and re-evaluating things you once believed, and the repercussions one may experience because of questioning these long-held beliefs or doctrines. A faith crisis may occur due to a change or re-examining of personal values, more in-depth scrutiny or study of the belief system, or from encountering conflicting information than what has been taught in the faith or religious institution. Additionally, a person may experience a faith crisis if the organization they are a part of begins to endorse things the individual opposes or disagrees with. Some may find themselves or someone they are close to being marginalized or diminished by their religious organization and struggle to rectify the conflict between their personal values and the views of their faith.

In some circumstances, individuals may experience extreme distress and anxiety due to dogmatic beliefs or oppressive practices within a religious framework. Questioning any aspect of the faith may be met with controlling, manipulative, coercive, or otherwise abusive and unsettling reactions. These responses can compound feelings of trauma, guilt, or shame a person may experience during a crisis of faith.

Whatever the cause, individuals experiencing a crisis of faith report feelings of sadness, anger, fear, and confusion. Many feel alone, isolated, misjudged, misunderstood, conflicted, and even alienated. In addition to the powerful feelings they face, persons undergoing a faith crisis often feel repercussions in their support systems or a total loss of these resources. Often, individuals may not feel they can speak up about their questions or feelings in their faith groups because of fear of rejection, embarrassment, or judgment. They may isolate or withdraw from persons and organizations that were once a vital and fulfilling part of their lives.

How can a faith crisis affect you?

For many, faith is an over-arching theme of life that informs their beliefs, thoughts, and actions. The practice of one's religion can become so intertwined with daily life that a crisis of faith truly feels like the world being spun on its axis. Re-examining and questioning previous beliefs about life, meaning, and existence can feel overwhelming and frightening. Some may describe the experience as an existential crisis, wherein their whole outlook on life feels destabilized, disoriented, and challenged. The distress and confusion during this period may lead to or further exacerbate other mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, and shame.

A faith crisis or faith transition can significantly alter or affect relationships and support systems. Couples may find themselves on different pages about what faith should look like and what that means for their partnership or family. Families may experience stress trying to adapt to different views or practices within the home. Often, individuals surround themselves with those of the same or similar faith and integrate themselves into communities, groups, neighborhoods, and even schools. Questioning or losing this part of their identity may cause them to feel isolated or unwelcome in these groups, or they may find they no longer feel a connection to them.

How might a faith crisis be resolved?

We each experience the world differently. This includes how we view the world, our place in it, spirituality, and the possible existence of a higher power(s). There is no right or wrong answer, or one size fits all approach to questions of faith. Our ultimate goal as counselors is to be a sounding board and support on your journey to living your most authentic life. We will empower you to trust yourself and decide what you choose to believe or not to believe.

Some people come out of the other side, deciding to remain in their faith after finding new ways to integrate their own values into the belief system. Others hold on to the areas of their faith that are true to them while rejecting problematic beliefs or practices. Some may move away from the belief system itself but continue practicing the traditions or rituals they value or focus their attention on what they value in the religious community. Others may decide to part ways with their faith entirely.

We recognize all outcomes as valid and worthwhile and will support you no matter where you land after resolution.

How can therapy help?

At Therapy for Families, we will provide you with a confidential, non-judgmental, open, and accepting space to examine and process the questions and feelings you are experiencing. We will support you as you explore questions about faith, examine your personal beliefs, connect with and strengthen your core values, and help you decide what path will be most authentic to you. We will empower and encourage you to have confidence in your decisions for your life and to trust your ability to determine what is best for you. Additionally, we will help you uncover and address any other mental health concerns you may be experiencing during this transition.

At times, a crisis or loss of faith can cause feelings of grief or trauma. We will help you understand grief's role in this process and give you the space and support to process the losses you may feel. We will help you develop new ways to address ingrained beliefs, thoughts, or feelings that may continue to surface.

We will also help you cope with interpersonal challenges associated with loss of community or support systems or difficulty in family relationships. For couples, therapists may facilitate communication around fears or concerns, future goals, and helping partners feel respected and heard.

If a teen or adult child is experiencing a crisis of faith, therapy may help parents process feelings of guilt, loss, hurt, or fear regarding their child leaving a belief system that continues to be important and true to them.

The space and freedom to explore and choose your beliefs and path are vital to well-being and satisfaction with life. In our role as supportive, understanding, empathetic counselors, we will aid you in determining what belief or faith is authentic to you. Whatever questions, concerns, or difficulties you may face during this process, we will ensure you have a safe space to feel seen, supported, and empowered.

Hi, my name is Melaney Bright, your mental health specialist with faith crisis and faith transitions. I am here to support you on your journey. I am currently seeing clients in the Clear Lake and The Woodlands offices. Reach out today to discover how we can help.

Mental Health Specialist helping with faith transitions in The Woodlands and Kemah, TX.

Begin In-Person Counseling for Faith Crisis or Faith Transition near Houston, League City, The Woodlands, and Midland.

Our compassionate, non-judgmental therapists can help you on your journey to living your most authentic life. We know it can feel isolating and scary as you re-evaluate long held beliefs and views that have shaped your world. We will walk beside you and support you to find the path that is right for you.

Take advantage of our free 15 minute consultation today to learn how we can help. We provide counseling services near Houston, in League City, The Woodlands, and Midland. Additionally, we offer tele-therapy in Florida, Louisiana, Texas, and Utah.