"Atheist don't really get disowned by their families"!
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06-11-2013, 02:23 PM
"Atheist don't really get disowned by their families"!
I’ve managed to get my Theist friend, to listen to some atheist podcasts, or at least allow me to listen to them while she is around and has to listen, TTA included. She listened to a comment by a caller who discussed being disowned by her family for coming out as atheist.

My theist friend became very annoyed by this and stated, “Atheist don’t really get disowned by their families. That doesn’t really happen. Who would do that?” I insisted that it was true, that this is really a reality that atheist, who have not yet told their families, really do potentially face.

She found this ridiculous, and asked, “Do you know a single person personally who has been disowned by their families for being atheist? Seriously…because I don’t know a single one”. I said, personally I don’t because I never have had to discuss religion with my parents to have to come out about, and only have two atheist friends whose parents know they are atheist, but their own parents aren’t religious themselves so it never mattered. The only other atheist friends I have are still in the closet, at least with their families. But that doesn’t mean that there are not a great number of people who have had to suffer with the reality of it. It actually shocked me that she did not believe it was a real thing to be disowned by pious family members for not believing.

Also, if we are going by anecdotal evidence, then how much of a sample size do you really have. I have, counting myself, maybe four or five confirmed atheist that I know personally. A few others that just don't bother with it, but by definition of not believing are atheist, though they don’t bother with it enough to claim it. She would say we are surrounded by atheist, that most people aren't Christians. I explain that this is just by her limited definition of Christians, in which she doesn't count Christians that she doesn't think are Christians, or whom she doesn't believe are devout enough to count, but believe me...they are almost everyone you meet regardless of whether you think they meet your standard of Christian, they are still Christians.

The disconnect seems, to me, to go beyond that of the myths and reality, but also to their very understanding of social structure. Many, and my friend is not excluded form this group, need to believe that Christians are the oppressed, outcast, minority, struggling to persevere. They can't allow for the belief that it could possibly be that they are the ones doing the oppressing, or that there could be others more persecuted than them, as the bible tells them they themselves (the Christians) are the persecuted.

I feel Christians are so focused on being victims, and being oppressed that they fail to see the reality of what the world really looks like. That their group is the largest group of people in the world, control the government, are gaining control over our schools, and our laws.

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06-11-2013, 02:32 PM
RE: "Atheist don't really get disowned by their families"!
Just to add to the point of writing this...it's not the idea that every outed atheist becames disowned, it's that her feeling is that it's not a hardship at all to admit you are an atheist. She views the world as being full of nonbelievers, and as such she doesn't see the fuss with the callers who say they have struggled with coming out. She has this idea that the world is so much more accepting of atheist than of Christians so what's the big deal. She thinks her life admitting her Christianity has been far more of a personal and life hardship to admit she is and live her life as a Christian.

She has no grasp on what reality is really like in this regard.

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06-11-2013, 03:39 PM
RE: "Atheist don't really get disowned by their families"!
Actually, I think you hit a sore spot - it would probably shake her up a bit to know that Christians are so unkind to their own relatives.

There have been a lot of accounts of atheists being shunned by their families here. I bet an internet search would yield a lot.

Maybe you want to show her? Or not? Not sure about your relationship and her reaction.

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06-11-2013, 04:22 PM
RE: "Atheist don't really get disowned by their families"!
My family hasn't spoken to me except to ascertain if I'm still an unbeliever.


God is a concept by which we measure our pain -- John Lennon

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06-11-2013, 04:44 PM
RE: "Atheist don't really get disowned by their families"!
There are these little moments where you can see inside someone’s mind.

She started by asking if I “know of anyone”…paused, and then restated, with the qualification of asking if I “know of anyone personally”, who has been disowned by their own family. It’s in the qualifier, of knowing personally, that she showed her thought process.

She clearly realized, as she asked that, that I may be able to come up with a lot of examples, but needed to add the qualifier of personally knowing them so as to reduce the numbers I could draw from. I think this is a dishonest trick and obviously used to purposefully avoid hearing a reality that she clearly realized she might have to confront without a qualifier to buffer it.

And so, if I gave examples from those here in this forum, or any other examples of others stories that I know of, she would dismiss them as anecdotal, because ironically “they” don’t tend to accept anecdotal evidence, unless it supports their own position in which case they accept it unquestioningly.

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06-11-2013, 05:07 PM (This post was last modified: 06-11-2013 05:27 PM by kim.)
RE: "Atheist don't really get disowned by their families"!
Hmm... she sounds pretty self centered. That and what Dom said; christees would never be so mean to their own family members!! She is myopic in her estimation of the human experience. There are many instances of family abandonment due to religion found here, all over the net, and throughout history.

Religion cultivates and promulgates codependent relationships with {insert random deity} and the surest way to ensure that codependency is by practicing passive-aggressive, manipulative behavior on family and friends.

Like father like son as they say. Wink WWJD?

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06-11-2013, 05:12 PM
RE: "Atheist don't really get disowned by their families"!
Well I've never been disowned by my family for coming out as an Atheist. However when I lived with my Aunt and Uncle for a year or so and they told me I could only stay if I went to church every week. I really didn't talk about it much with them, they are the most religious people I know. I imagine the bible belt is just full of people like that. If their children claimed they didn't believe in god, I'm sure disowning wouldn't be far from the mark.

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06-11-2013, 05:23 PM
RE: "Atheist don't really get disowned by their families"!
(06-11-2013 04:22 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  My family hasn't spoken to me except to ascertain if I'm still an unbeliever.

Sorry to hear. How long has it been like that?

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06-11-2013, 05:31 PM (This post was last modified: 06-11-2013 05:37 PM by Raptor Jesus.)
RE: "Atheist don't really get disowned by their families"!
(06-11-2013 05:07 PM)kim Wrote:  ...She is myopic in her estimation of the human experience. ...

Yep...

I spend so much time on her with this, not because I want to deconvert her, but because I wan't to awaken her to the actual reality of the world we really live in, because she is so blinded to it by her religious thinking. She thinks the enter world works in a completely different way than it does in reality, based on her beliefs and preconceived notions. All I really want to accomplish with this one, is to get her to see the world as it really is.

It actually makes me sad for her sometimes, because it's not simply about having a myopic view of the world, human behavior, and history, or because she doesn't get to know how amazing it all really is when you learn these things you shut yourself off to due to your need to not know. But the reason I try, and the saddist thing is, how horrible and negative she views the world and even life itself, because its this horrible depraved thing that we must suffer through in order to prove ourselfs for entry into heaven upon death. It because of religion that the world seems so horrible to her, and death is actually a thing to look forward to. It just seems so negative, and a waste for our lives, while we have them for the short time that we do.

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06-11-2013, 05:44 PM
RE: "Atheist don't really get disowned by their families"!
A good friend of mine was disfellowed and disowned...to the point where she was almost glad that in her grandmother's last days she suffered from dementia. My friend said that if her grandmother remembered that she was no long JW she would refuse to visit. How freaking sad is that?

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