Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States
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I skipped school one day and my parents found out. They yelled at me, not knowing that it is a common thing to skip school.  Well! my dad who has an anger problem, hit me and threatened to kill me. I got so mad and reported to a program called STARS. The lady in charge, reported the case, and also told the cops in school. Somebody  from the police department, I believe, came and took pictures of the bruise I had on my knee. Now I have this really stupid feeling inside of me. But I really can't take it anymore because to me and to the law this is abuse. My parents are so strict, I'm not allowed to go anywhere or do anything with my friends in school or in church; only with certain college ones who are older than me. Iam 15 years old. They do not understand that I need to be around friends my own age. Well! now I do not know what I should do, but Iam not feeling too good about any of this; I just meant to  teach them a lesson. I'm not sure if I could take the report back or not.

Before I discuss if your Dad has an anger problem let me discuss your behavior.
  • You skipped school, and then you went about justifying it by saying that is a common thing to do. For you it was not a big deal; you did not tell your parents. Hiding an act is wrong. It is a lie especially if the act is as bad as you acknowledge yours to be. You are trying to justify your act by saying "it is common." Well, alcohol and drug abuse are more common than skipping school. Would that make those bad habits justifiable? Maybe you have regrets that you reported your father, but I sense you do not have any regrets that you skipped school and I wonder if you wouldn't mind doing it again if you get the chance. Concerning such a behavior, the Holy Bible says,  "But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death" (Rev 21:8).

  • You reacted to your fatherís disciplining you (although I disagree with corporal punishment) by reporting him. It did not occur to you how much disappointment your father had felt when he knew that you had skipped school and lied to him. You could not understand why he was so upset.

  • You think you are teaching your parents a lesson. That is not what the Holy Bible teaches us "Honor your father and your mother, as the LORD your God has commanded you" (Deut 5:16); "My son, hear the instruction of your father, And do not forsake the law of your mother" (Prov 1:8); "He who mistreats his father and chases away his mother Is a son who causes shame and brings reproach" (Prov 19:26); "Let your father and your mother be glad, And let her who bore you rejoice" (Prov 23:25).

  • When the Holy Spirit works in your conscience, you call it "really stupid feeling inside of me and won't go away". This is not a stupid feeling. This is the Holy Spirit trying to wake you up and make you realize that you have sinned against God, your parents and yourself. What you need to do is to admit your mistakes and repent. The best thing is to contact Abouna as soon as possible and talk to him about what has happened; but more importantly you should be convinced that you need to repent and confess.

  • Regarding the report you have filed, as far as I know, unfortunately, you can do nothing about it. Even if you ask to withdraw it, the police will not allow you. It has become a state charge and they will have to investigate it with your father.

  • Instead of depicting your father as strict and  just gives you a hard time, I would like you to talk to him, perhaps in the presence of Abouna, discuss with him your concerns; and come up with a satisfying solution to both of you.
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