How should I respond to my family and relatives when they wish me "Merry Christmas?"
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11-11-2012, 11:11 PM
How should I respond to my family and relatives when they wish me "Merry Christmas?"
I come from a Catholic family that sent me to private Catholic school for about eight years of my life. I started to become skeptical of religion approximately one to two years ago, and finally, about two or three months ago, I finally broke free from religion and officially declared myself an atheist.

I still have yet to come out to my family, and I plan on taking it slowly since I am unsure of how they might react to my atheistic views. I am planning on telling them before Christmas rolls around, since I would rather be honest with them throughout the season instead of just going through the motions and lying the entire time.

As I have been thinking about things that I should prepare for before then, the greeting of "Merry Christmas" crossed my mind almost immediately. I don't think I would have much trouble responding to a stranger or even a friend with "Happy Winter Solstice" or simply "Happy Holidays," but what should I do when my family wishes me "Merry Christmas," especially other relatives. I am worried that if my being an atheist somehow gets out to my relatives, it may have an adverse effect on the mood of things. Not only that, but what really worries me is the negative effects it could have on my elderly grandparents. I don't know if something like that could give them a heart attack or what.

Thanks for your advice. Any other tips about this situation I am in would be greatly appreciated.
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11-11-2012, 11:51 PM
RE: How should I respond to my
Merry Christmas? What is wrong with that again? Its not like you are saying you believe in Jesus or something. Its just a holiday! It has no more to do with Jesus than Halloween does with the dead or Thanksgiving with the pilgrims and Indians.

I guess if you are die hard against it the accepted norm is happy holidays.
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11-11-2012, 11:52 PM (This post was last modified: 12-11-2012 05:23 AM by Bucky Ball.)
How should I respond to my family and relatives when they wish me "Merry Christmas?"
Happy Holidays, and the best New Year ever.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein Certified Ancient Astronaut Theorist
Isaiah 45:7 "I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things" (KJV)

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11-11-2012, 11:54 PM
RE: How should I respond to my family and relatives
What's wrong with Merry Christmas? It's a national holiday....and the holiday is called Christmas. What is the problem with telling someone to be merry on this holiday? Even though it has Christian meaning and origins, those aren't the only things that make this holiday significant. It's about spending time with family, giving from the heart, and loving unconditionally. I am a fellow atheist but I still celebrate this holiday, because the memories made during this time of year are well worth it to me.

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12-11-2012, 02:06 AM
"Merry Christmas?"
Nothing wrong with someone telling you Merry Christmas.

Last I checked .. the calendar on my wall says the name of the holiday is Christmas ... so go to your family and have a MERRY CHRISTMAS! Collect your presents.. thank them.. eat their food.. thank them again .... and if they are serving the alcohol .. DRINK IT~!

Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities. -- Voltaire
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12-11-2012, 02:29 AM (This post was last modified: 12-11-2012 02:34 AM by Vera.)
RE: How should I respond to my family
How about our tradition over here - on Easter people greet you with "Christ has risen" and you must answer "Indeed he has" (and all this - in a kinda archaic form of our language). I still manage to get it out of my mouth, cause I'm good at pretending and it's just words, albeit - rather dumb words. Whatever makes others happy and gives me some peace.

Personally, I haven't much cared for Xmas for years, even before I became an atheist, but I still go through the motions.

My two cents - if your grandparents are really old, I wouldn't tell them. Can't really see any need to upset them so much and it won't really affect your integrity or anything. Not everybody needs to know everything abouts us (actually, the less they know, the better, but that's just me). Also - if giving pain to others can be avoided relatively easily, I always go for not causing it.

This being said, if people around you are overly religious and keep saying stupid stuff, it might be more difficult to control yourself.

"E se non passa la tristezza con altri occhi la guarderò."
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12-11-2012, 02:34 AM (This post was last modified: 12-11-2012 02:37 AM by DLJ.)
RE: How should I respond to "Merry Christmas?"
Dude, Christmas was a pagan holiday before the christos adopted it.
In some parts of the world, they even protested against it because of its pagan roots.

In Asia, I get "Merry Christmas" all the time (well, in December, anyway) because it's assumed that I'm Christian.

I reply with: I'm not a Christian but thank you anyway. I hope you have one too.
Interestingly, if the conversation continues, there is an immediate assumption that I'm a free-thinker (the term 'atheist' isn't used much here).

Given that the subject is bound to be preying on your mind as you go through this transition, I can see why it would bother you.

Can I recommend that you let it go as much as possible or at least smile politely as you reject the offer of merriment.

Not easy, I know.

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12-11-2012, 03:08 AM
RE: How should I respond to my family and relatives when they.....
Christmas? *googles*

... Oh, you mean Giftmas!

Say "Thanks for the sentiment, you have a good one."

The people closely associated with the namesake of female canines are suffering from a nondescript form of lunacy.
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12-11-2012, 04:21 AM
RE: How should I respond to my family and relatives when they.....
(12-11-2012 03:08 AM)Free Thought Wrote:  Christmas? *googles*

... Oh, you mean Giftmas!

Say "Thanks for the sentiment, you have a good one."
Don't mock giftmas...
l2p the game!

Its all about coming out ahead.
Net gain - Net expenditure = positive

Sometimes you win, sometimes some asshole doesn't give you a gift, and sometimes they give you a pile of shit. If you get piles of shit the key is to repackage them, and give them to people in the next Christmas party.
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12-11-2012, 05:08 AM
fucking excessive title here
Happy Mithras Day! Big Grin

That's what I tell people.

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