I had a really happy childhood. From all my childhood I must have 10% negative memories that I can still recall. I can even say that it was perfect.
When I was 11, I changed school because of problems. I started suffering some bulling during 3 years.
But I had some few friends, life wasn't so bad, I was just living a bad time, and I knew stuffs would get better.
When I entered High School was when stuffs got even worst. I started having identity problems, didn't understand why I wanted to date girls, my grades started getting worst, etc etc etc.
I was probably 15 when I fully realized that life doesn't have purpose, that I started to realize that trying to be happy was pointless.
I realized really late, but it was because I wanted to be naive for a long time, I was scared to realize that everything was pointless.
And I wish it was later, because all of a sudden my life was shattered apart and I felt into depression, but also scared of dying cuz I once knew happiness.
When someone mentions that "life has no purpose" is easy to point them as a depressive thought, but that's just how is it. I'll enjoy my life the best I can, and archieve goals the best I can.
I don't need to overthink greater meanings of life, that got me stuck in a period of depression, so I'll just move forward.
I honestly prefer to leave this kind of discussion to thinkers and the like, myself I don't really care whether life has a meaning or not. I'm on this planet, so I might as well do something interesting with my time here.
The only big change I made was when I decided to cut away from christianity and started to label myself as a believer rather than a follower of any particular cult. A believer because I believe that a higher power exist, but whatever you choice call It (God, Allah etc...) it doesn't matter. Every religion is pretty much a spin on the same ideology.
Around 12, Then I grew out of that phase around 16. While it's true, Life may have no meaning at all on a cosmic scale, It's not true, that it has no meaning at all, Because we give life it's meaning ourselves. Because we give everything it's meaning. Meaning is a made up term we use that are important to us as a (And possibly only) intelligent species. Importance is a thought process that only exists because of us. Otherwise, the Universe would have no meaning, just Stars, planets and blackholes floating aimlessly until Heat death. So while it's true, Life technically has no 'meaning' Neither does technically anything else, So we give things meaning ourselves to begin with. So in turn, Life only has the meaning that you give it. Happiness is the same. Why let it bother you if it doesn't matter, Being depressed, fucking sucks. I'd rather just be happy if everything doesn't matter, because why the hell not? It's far more pleasant.
I also used to think everything was grey. That's not true actually. At all. If you want to go purely by a scientific point of view. Morality only exists in our human minds. That means, there is no right or wrong, or even middle ground. There's only existing. However if you agree that morality does exist, at least in a philosophical sense. Then there is such a thing as a truly wrong, or right. Rape is wrong. Violence without reason is Wrong. Torturing children is Wrong. These are things that non-negotiably wrong. Therefore, There are also things that are Good. Such as a raising a child that's parents abandoned, or Giving a homeless person a meal for free out of your own pocket. While the world is certainly not pure white and black. There are things that are just Fact, Good and Evil.
Religiously, Why not? I'm a self identified Catholic, even though I don't fully believe in a book that has been translated over a hundred times, purposely changed multiple times. So I just follow the core philosophy. While it isn't perfect, No culture is. And no culture is created equal either. As goodness goes, The amount of charity that the Christian Religion gives to others is some of the largest in the country, and definitely religion wise, As the U.S. is concerned anyways. Why not believe life COULD have meaning, I mean, Even if I'm wrong it doesn't change anything, and If I'm right, than it's fucking awesome. Sure I could go in life, moping about, Believing in nothing, But that is no way to live, rather bite a bullet, than just survive for the sake of it, Especially considering this life is temporary, so it doesn't matter how long you live in it. Because it will always end either way. Therefore, Might as well be more positive than negative.
My view never really changed. I haven't had any profound realizations about life as a whole, it's only ever been realizations about general human behavior that's changed my Outlook a couple of times.
I take the extra steps to observe fact rather than sentiment, and so I feel I've always been beyond the general perception of the world as seen by my peers, since I was in kindergarten up until now.
But I'm an optimist. I'm an optimist, not because I want to have warm fuzzy feelings about the world, but because the world is generally full of good things, and most things follow a positive trend.
Whenever you thought "I don't know if more bad things are happening or it just gets reported more often", well, bad things in the world tend to happen less often as time goes on, with minor spikes here and there, so you probably have an answer there.
When I was homeless. I thought I would die but I just got mental problems instead. I was a teenager
Uhh when I was 16 and my parents died. My perception of things changed alot. You never think they're going to go anywhere and then with a snap of your fingers they're gone. Then you're on your own.
It has changed several times, and it continues to change. To be stagnant in your worldview is to be arrogant in the belief that you have stopped growing.
Just recently, my foundations were shaken by the death of a friend for example. That was six months ago, and now that I have had time to heal, I have yet again transformed. Even more recently, I left my job. I have chosen not to fade into a life where I cannot live my life. Next month, I plan to embark on an adventure, and do not expect to be home for 2/3rds of the entire month. It will be the longest I've been away from home while traveling alone. I will surely be a different person when I return. I have undergone several transformations, both minor and major, and I still do not feel as though the world has ever truly compromised me. Even if the last six months drew me pretty close.
Well, as much as I believe in higher powers, I'm also of the opinion that people shouldn't ven relying on them to justify every good/bad thing that's happens to them. TBH, y biggest problem with religion as a whole is that it has a tendency to create narrow minded people. Those beliefs can get so ingrained into your psyche can be really difficult and could even do more harm than good. I mean, if we're suddenly told that the sky was actually green and not blue, I'd seriously start questioning my sanity.
Regarding your friend, having an emotional crutch such as religion is necessary to some people, and don't think there's anything wrong with her excercising her faith, so long she keeps her feet on the ground and doesn't start doing things that could potentially harm her.
After seeing lots of deaths, I realized life is a one-time offer.
There are so many unknown stuff in the world waiting for me to explore, to understand..I'm confined to this place because of reality..I cannot die before those dreams come true...If I die inevitably, so be it....
I don't think my childhood was very happy...or else I would not have the temperament I have now..
My motto is "已识乾坤大，尤怜草木青"
＜translation made by myself: admiring the beauty of insignificant things like grass, flowers when knowing how complicated, cruel the world is"＞
What a pity..I am actually not an immortal time traveller...