Before I Drive Myself Mad, Please Help Me!
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22-12-2011, 01:10 PM
RE: Before I Drive Myself Mad, Please Help Me!
(16-12-2011 11:36 PM)socken Wrote:  I am a closet atheist for several reasons, though I think some family members and co-workers suspect. Suffice it to say I don’t have much outlet for my views, or opportunity to use any of the knowledge or devices in counter apologetics I spend so much of my time absorbing. It’s frustrating. I am just waiting for the day when I will have to defend my views. Being someone who tends to fly off the handle and later regret not being calm enough to articulate, I am afraid of that day.
I’ve heard Seth talk about being tolerant with Christians, that they are not idiots, that they are good people like anyone else, that they are just compartmentalizing as I probably do myself about some things (like I did for years, although thinking back I don't know if I ever really bought the BS), to love the person and hate the dogma. It all sounds good when he’s saying it, but when I’m alone and thinking about it, I seriously do not understand (yes, PLEASE let me say it) HOW PEOPLE CAN BE SUCH IDIOTS!!!! It makes me CRAZY!!! CRRRAAAAAZZZZYYYYY!!!
I have these heated discussions in my head with various people in my circle. These in-my-head discussions just raise my blood pressure and make me more frustrated. I am thinking I need to start getting into some actual discussions with actual people to hone my skills—onlineSad.
Am I on to something here? If so, does anyone have any suggestions? Where I could start or just dabble? I was even thinking of creating an online identity just for this reason and maybe even getting into it with people I know. Call me a coward, but I know myself and how I learn and develop.
Thanks for any feedback.
The internet is where alot of atheists reside - as we are usually lonely in real life by the mass population of religious people. If you really want live conversations - skype is a good way to do it. I'm sure there is some debate skype group, or something of the sort. I know how you feel, I'm a closet atheist as well and I have to tolerate my family. I tend to rebel with things I do in my spare time..like turning the bible into a christmas tree...getting back to point, I use the internet to satisfy my need for other atheist conversations and debates. I recommend practicing both online debates and conversational - (skype).

I hope you find a solution!
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22-12-2011, 01:28 PM
RE: Before I Drive Myself Mad, Please Help Me!
Hey socken .. welcome.

Listen um... *looks over at Erxomi on other side of this thread* if you stick around awhile you'll learn alot about that pervy uncle, cousin with the collar and the granny. Big Grin

Good group of people though. I myself lived in a chirstian ministry for little over a year. Boy was that a test of witty debates and twisted mindsets. I actually experienced the brainwashing first hand being submerged in their world 24/7. I was ashamed.. I actually drank the punch and for a very, VERY short time I started to serve that damn punch too. But the good part is I'm now living with sanity and freedom of mind.

Then... few months ago.. while I was still in that Jesus Commando camp... granny showed up.. well I won't get into details but.. while I thought it was gross.. granny was actually.. um..

sorry was sliding off topic again.. anyhow welcome!

Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities. -- Voltaire
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27-12-2011, 03:57 AM
RE: Before I Drive Myself Mad, Please Help Me!
I understand the reasons for which you are a closet atheist,but it's pointless to hide.
Stand up,express yourself,argue and come out with it.You'll feel great,trust me.

The meaning of peace is the absence of opposition to socialism.
-Karl Marx


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27-12-2011, 12:07 PM
RE: Before I Drive Myself Mad, Please Help Me!
Welcome Socken, I think you'll find this the place for you. There are a lot of people here who share your story. I have a similar story, but I'm fortunately married to an atheist so I can express my thoughts to her.

My father is very religious and I was at one point too. I even gave up two years of my early adulthood in a program similar to that of the mormons; the program I was in was called Master's Commission. I now look at it as somewhat cultish. In any case, before I went to the program (while I was still in high school and just after) I listened to a lot of apologetics tapes with my father (Ken Ham, Kent Hovind, etc.) both because I had my own doubts at the time and because I wanted to be able to defend myself. I never really took their arguments to heart, but it was enough to give me a "no one really knows" sort of outlook and put my doubts away for a while. Years later the doubts resurfaced and I looked honestly at what we know of the past, scientific and historical findings, and really applied that to the Bible. I had a lot of pent up frustration with the church in general and with other Christians, and that allowed me to take a step back to evaluate my faith and honestly look at the implications of the bible as the infallible word of God. In the middle of all of this, when my dad came to visit, he confronted me about the status of my faith, and I told him that I don't think I believe anymore but I wouldn't go into great detail because I still had all of this stuff floating around in my mind. I wouldn't be able to talk without getting emotional- angry, frustrated, etc. And when that happens I can't talk- I just lash out or my mind goes completely blank. It was a very long talk we had, mostly him talking. But I felt immensely better knowing that I don't have to pretend to be Christian around him or my family anymore.

The reason I share all of this is because with all of these thoughts and ideas floating around in my head I needed a place to share and read and learn from others. I found Seth's podcasts and then later I found these boards. This is relevant because I knew that my dad would eventually press for more. And he did. But having spent time here and listening to Seth's podcast and other podcasts, and having spent time mulling over everything I was actually more prepared for that conversation than I thought I would be. I was able to talk rationally and I felt much more comfortable with the conversation- I was really quite surprised and satisfied. The discussion with my dad isn't over. I doubt it ever will be, he'll never give up. But for now, I can accept that.

I think you may be surprised by the discussions you have and that the responses you anticipate are not always the ones you'll get when you talk to believers. At least I was. The conversation was much more civil and respectful than I thought it would be. The only outburst was my own, when I called the teachings of Ken Ham and Kent Hovind "absurd", and even though I stand by that, I sort of regret using that word in light of the rest of the conversation.

Anyway, sorry for the long post but the TL;DR version is that this site has helped me to be able to more clearly express myself in a very real way and that I think you may find it will help you too. Big Grin

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28-12-2011, 10:07 AM
RE: Before I Drive Myself Mad, Please Help Me!
Quote:I have these heated discussions in my head with various people in my circle. These in-my-head discussions just raise my blood pressure and make me more frustrated.
I know where you're coming from with regard to in-your-head discussions. They can be very crazy-making. And your other point about being frustrated over the idea of people just believing this stuff without proof, etc also rings true with me. It's like being the only thinking person in a world full of people with marshmallow fluff in their skulls. It makes me feel like an ignored, disrespected minority, and I don't like the feeling.

Welcome to the forums, and may you find what you need here.

"The amazing thing is that every atom in your body came from a star that exploded. ... So, forget Jesus. The stars died so that you could be here today." -- Lawrence Krauss
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30-12-2011, 11:45 AM
RE: Before I Drive Myself Mad, Please Help Me!
Let me make this simple:

You don't have to answer to shit. You have a bunch of batshit crazy fuckers telling you what they believe with no evidence. Despite us having evidence, you don't have to explain anything, you are the default position. Until they explain something, which the haven't, you don't have to explain yourself either.

I made it known that I was an atheist at my place of work of 180 people, 60 of whom I talk to frequently while I am there. They obviously had questions and some lynching but when they realized how fucking little they know about their shit they keep to themselves pretty quick.

"We Humans are capable of greatness." -Carl Sagan
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30-12-2011, 03:41 PM
RE: Before I Drive Myself Mad, Please Help Me!
I totally get what you're going through.
I was a closet atheist for like a year, and I know how stressful it can be when your family start talking about religion and god, and your just bursting on the inside, dying to shout out something like "CUT THE FKING CRAP!".

I know it's exremely difficult, and I can't say that being an opened atheist in a theist (orthodox jewish in my case) home is easier than being a closet atheist, but I can safely tell you it will relieve you of that burden, and you should find any way possible to break it to your family and loved ones.

Just a heads-up, if you decide to break the news to your family, you should probably get ready for a lot of scrutiny about it.
In some cases Seth showed on the show, people lost family members in the process of coming out, but I think it's worth your intelectual intergrity and even more it's worth the relieve you'll get when you won't have to hide you're real thoughts.

Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to
believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?
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