Grieving as an atheist
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28-07-2015, 09:30 PM
Grieving as an atheist
First, the sad part. I recently lost my father very unexpectedly. He was killed in a motorcycle accident 2 weeks ago. I don't even know how to be this sad, it is unlike anything I have ever experienced. He was the greatest man I have ever known and his death has left a gaping hole in my life.

This is the first time I've really grieved as an atheist, though. Although the sadness that I feel is deeply profound and utterly crushing, I'm finding I'm having an easier time coming to terms with the reality of it than the rest of my family, and even easier than I'd have expected. The only other loss I have had since my apostasy was my grandmother, but she was old and had been sick for a while. At the time, I attributed it to having time to grieve and come to terms with her death before it happened.

Has anyone else experienced this? I find it strangely comforting to know that there is no plan. His death was not at the whim of some cosmic puppet master, but a random occurrence in an unconcerned universe. It seems to me that my family's faith is causing their minds to reject this horrible reality because it does not fit with their view of a loving god. Cognitive dissonance ringing loudly in their heads, clouding their ability to accept it and process it.

Excuse me, I'm making perfect sense. You're just not keeping up.

"Let me give you some advice, bastard: never forget what you are. The rest of the world will not. Wear it like armor, and it can never be used to hurt you." - Tyrion Lannister
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28-07-2015, 09:36 PM
RE: Grieving as an atheist
I am terribly sorry to hear of the loss of your father.

Take the time to grieve and know that there are things you will go through along the way that are expected and necessary.

Sudden death is hard...really hard.

Again, I am very sorry, how awful for you and for your family.

See here they are the bruises some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF

We're all mad here. The Cheshire Cat
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28-07-2015, 09:37 PM
RE: Grieving as an atheist
There is no "how" to grieving. It is a flood of emotion, and best, in my view, to let it wash you clean. I've buried a few loved ones and friends as well, and over the years I've learnt that for myself letting the pain flow is healthy ... but I don't for a moment think my way is the only or best way. I only know how I cope, which is to savor the memories and make my peace with the bittersweet.

My condolences for your loss. May you and your family find peace and come to terms with it, however you do so.
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28-07-2015, 09:38 PM
RE: Grieving as an atheist
I am so sorry for your loss. Hugs to you.
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28-07-2015, 09:47 PM
RE: Grieving as an atheist
So sorry for the loss of your father. Hug
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28-07-2015, 09:49 PM
RE: Grieving as an atheist
(28-07-2015 09:30 PM)itsnotmeitsyou Wrote:  First, the sad part. I recently lost my father very unexpectedly. He was killed in a motorcycle accident 2 weeks ago. I don't even know how to be this sad, it is unlike anything I have ever experienced. He was the greatest man I have ever known and his death has left a gaping hole in my life.

This is the first time I've really grieved as an atheist, though. Although the sadness that I feel is deeply profound and utterly crushing, I'm finding I'm having an easier time coming to terms with the reality of it than the rest of my family, and even easier than I'd have expected. The only other loss I have had since my apostasy was my grandmother, but she was old and had been sick for a while. At the time, I attributed it to having time to grieve and come to terms with her death before it happened.

Has anyone else experienced this? I find it strangely comforting to know that there is no plan. His death was not at the whim of some cosmic puppet master, but a random occurrence in an unconcerned universe. It seems to me that my family's faith is causing their minds to reject this horrible reality because it does not fit with their view of a loving god. Cognitive dissonance ringing loudly in their heads, clouding their ability to accept it and process it.

We had something of the same experience with suddenness.
My terrific mother-in-law was medically killed with a wrong medication, & then my father-in-law suddenly developed pancreatic cancer & died 15 days after diagnosis. It was exactly 8 months from the day of losing his beloved wife.
We came to terms that we could not turn back the clock, but there was no blame or anything else assigned to any sky spook, or the ''why them'' comments. Some people said they were ''in a better place'', which really made us mad because they loved their lives & enjoyed every minute of it. Their ''better place'' was right here, & comments like that are ridiculous.
Sad for your loss, but it does get easier, & you know your father isn't in some other non-existent place.
Time, & patience with yourself helps.
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28-07-2015, 09:51 PM
RE: Grieving as an atheist
((((MrsB))))
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28-07-2015, 10:06 PM
RE: Grieving as an atheist
(28-07-2015 09:51 PM)Thumpalumpacus Wrote:  ((((MrsB))))

Thank you. We have great memories.
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28-07-2015, 10:41 PM
RE: Grieving as an atheist
(28-07-2015 09:49 PM)Mrs.B Wrote:  
---
Time, & patience with yourself helps.

^^THAT^^

Give yourself a lot of time. Years ago when my father died in August, my mom didn't even remember our first Christmas without him... no recollection whatsoever. She was pretty much in a daze, I think ... we all were... and we were prepared.

I can't imagine what you must be going through. It's a shock to lose a loved one so suddenly like that. Take it easy on yourself and family ... I have to assume everyone is pretty fucked up about it, at the moment. During this period when people gather, there can be a lot of misdirected anger ... you may need to just let that roll off and not hang on to resentment. Chances are, people have no idea what they are saying.

If any of them are the "...in a better place" kind, I suspect that's the only way they are able to deal with such a sudden loss. Personally that stuff pisses me off: hell no he's not in a better place! He'd want to be fucking alive, on the planet, enjoying life!! Again, just let that slide for now.

Anger aside ... Dodgy I am very sorry for your loss. Hug
.

Also, what Thumpy said - memories will help you sort a lot out - all memories.


Again, condolences to you and your family for your loss. Heart

A new type of thinking is essential if mankind is to survive and move to higher levels. ~ Albert Einstein
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28-07-2015, 10:56 PM
RE: Grieving as an atheist
Thank you all for your condolences.


(28-07-2015 10:41 PM)kim Wrote:  
(28-07-2015 09:49 PM)Mrs.B Wrote:  
---
Time, & patience with yourself helps.

^^THAT^^

Give yourself a lot of time. Years ago when my father died in August, my mom didn't even remember our first Christmas without him... no recollection whatsoever. She was pretty much in a daze, I think ... we all were... and we were prepared.

I can't imagine what you must be going through. It's a shock to lose a loved one so suddenly like that. Take it easy on yourself and family ... I have to assume everyone is pretty fucked up about it, at the moment. During this period when people gather, there can be a lot of misdirected anger ... you may need to just let that roll off and not hang on to resentment. Chances are, people have no idea what they are saying.

If any of them are the "...in a better place" kind, I suspect that's the only way they are able to deal with such a sudden loss. Personally that stuff pisses me off: hell no he's not in a better place! He'd want to be fucking alive, on the planet, enjoying life!! Again, just let that slide for now.

Anger aside ... Dodgy I am very sorry for your loss. Hug
.

Also, what Thumpy said - memories will help you sort a lot out - all memories.


Again, condolences to you and your family for your loss. Heart

My family has been good about being respectful of my atheism during this time, which despite the circumstances has been nice. There have been a few that have made slightly passive aggressive comments, but no outright attempts to re-convert me.

Excuse me, I'm making perfect sense. You're just not keeping up.

"Let me give you some advice, bastard: never forget what you are. The rest of the world will not. Wear it like armor, and it can never be used to hurt you." - Tyrion Lannister
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