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Questions To Any Atheist Here With Children And/or Teenagers.


Eban73
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Well, having no children at all, I've wondered about parenting in many aspects. I've been running into classmates over the last few years, and, many of them have children. Some had children in high school, some have as many 3-5 kids. I can't even imagine how they cope with the insanity and don't want to imagine. As I've noted previously, I've been working at a Jasons' Deli for a year now and come across church groups. I recently made a topic about the circle jerk that I think that can be easily broken once someone says they no longer believe in god. 

 

My question to you atheist with children is do other parents and even their children look at you or treat you any different? Do you and/or children have to deal with the sometimes inevitable backlash? D

 

o the grandparents look at you any different?

 

Is your life overall different? What about your child or children? 

 

Eh. I don't know what else to ask at the moment. It's almost 3 in the morning and often times I get rather depressed late at night thinking about shit that I really shouldn't think about. I start pondering on life in general. In less than about a decade, I think I've lost about 7-8 classmates to everything from medical problems to murder, and I've also lost about 7 family members in the same time period. kind of often reminds that life is too damn short.

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I don't care what others think of me or my kids.  But to answer your question, no one has treated me or my kids any differently, but no one has ever asked me about religion as of late.

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My daughter is 19 and I didn't come out until after she had left home. I think, because of the church we were attending and the program the Wife was in, things would have been very difficult if I had come out sooner. But my brother has been an atheist since college, and his kids are coming along just fine.

Interestingly, the daughter has taken my deconversion better than her mom. I cautioned her about telling her friends, or to at least be careful, on account of Xians shunning her. She had already told her closest Xian friend about me, and the friend told her she had seen it for years. I'm sure the parents, if they knew, would have some attitude. What's interesting is one of her friends was in a family everyone looked up to, they were all 'so close', and such things, it set off my BS detector like nobody's business. And it turned out I'm right: the mom and dad were keeping the separation a secret from the church, which meant the kids couldn't tell anyone. And these were homeschooling kind. I chuckle when I think about it: I'm removed from it all now, moved out of the burbs back into the city. But if they all kknew, I of course being the out atheist would be the terrible terrible person, the women being so concerned and the men trying to rope me back in. But it's all okay that the poor kids in that family had to live with secrecy, because one of the parents worked for the Church, and the Xians wouldn't see anything wrong with all that.

Now: as the daughter grew up, I always did try to give her rational thinking skills, sometimes made me a heretic, or if not that, at least borderline and not walking in line. But since I'm out, my first priority was to make sure she understood I love her just the same, nothing's changed. I'm less concerned about proving my atheism to her and more concerned she keep her butt in school and be responsible, and most important know that I love her and nothing's changed. She has asked a few intelligent questions, and I have given her rational, and heartfelt, responses. Her friends, all in college, seem to be cool with it, or rather not surprised.

I don't really blame that family who was messed up in hiding their marital problems, although it's irresponsible to put kids through that. Xian organizations like Foursquare and others force this of people who work for them. I feel like the guy who reached into the culvert to rescue a whimpering dog, only to find what he pulled out was a rat. Or like all those people in Stephen King's Needful Things, where the objects they had once loved, they now saw as ugly, nasty, poisonous things, because they saw beneath the surface.

The story would have been very different had I deconverted when the daughter was much younger. I don't know if I was right or wrong, but I explained to her that I waited to work some of these things out till late in her teen years. This is when she was giving me some kinda apologetic about how hard it can be for kids in an interfaith family. She hasn't done so anymore, because I asked her to explain what was made difficult for her now by me being out. Especially since she lives on her own. I told her, give me the real deal, the rational explanation, the straight dope on what's bothering you about it, not just the words off a church pamphlet. Honestly, I know it's my role to be sensitive in this situation, but I wanted her to be able to make it plain and not just nonfalsifiable fluff claims. And things have gotten better since, although I've only been out to them since this past April. Four months in a couple of weeks or so.

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