My paternal great-grandparents emigrated from Eastern Europe to the US south. My grandmother was then bullied throughout her childhood for being poor and Orthodox Jewish and the family had to endure the KKK in the south.
Because of this (and I’m sure other factors), my grandmother converted to southern baptist christianity as soon as possible and married my grandfather. She never shared that she was Jewish and would not allow my dad to tell anyone he was Jewish or learning anything about Judaism. She wouldn’t tell me much about her history with Judaism when I asked questions and was uncomfortable when I did ask questions.
She passed away recently and it was really complicated and hard for everyone. One of the things that has been hard is that it’s only now that I feel like I can learn about my connection to Judaism. I feel like I’m not Jewish “enough” to call myself Jewish though, and also I feel like I need to do more to be allowed to learn about Judaism.
There is a synagogue near me and I go on their website about once a week, just to look around and prepare myself if I ever feel like I can call them or go to a service. I am just so scared and can’t bring myself to do it. I am hoping to get some support or guidance from you all about how to approach this or steps I can take to understand my background more.
Sorry if none of this makes sense, like I said I’m extremely emotional and nervous when talking about any of this.
submitted by /u/sconeklein