"Newborn" atheist.
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19-07-2012, 09:04 PM
"Newborn" atheist.
Hello! I'm Heidi, seventeen, and I live in California with my father.

As of yesterday, July 18th 2012, I have decided to throw away all Christian indoctrination in my life and proclaim myself as an atheist. What does being an atheist mean to me? That religion and God does not exist and is a primeval explanation for life in order to answer questions not yet validated by science.

So that makes me an atheist, right? Haha good. I don't think I have felt more peace than I do now. Peace and excitement, actually. I've been watching all of thethinkingatheist's videos absorbing more and more knowledge and doing my own research to validate the suspicions I had my whole life.

I should probably explain to you my history.

But you'll find out that truthfully my history has always been influenced by my family on my mom's side. I lived with my mother till I was fifteen as a single child - my mother a single mom - and you could say I had been born into a potentially dangerous circumstance concerning mental slavery.

Don't get me wrong. My mother was a great woman. Compassionate. An unorthodox sense of humor (reminds me of Madea in Tyler Perry's movies). Loving.

She was born in Thailand while her parents (my grandparents) were involved in the religious cult Children of God. A lot of what I know about my family's history seems diluted and I don't know all the details, but everything that I do know is so shocking and horrifying... I can't help but be grateful that I haven't been sucked in so deeply into such a brainwashing program.

But it didn't mean that I wasn't influenced later on by Christianity. My mother has always suffered from depression, anger, violence, and suicidal tendencies. As a child, it is really difficult to look up to a parental figure that relies on their own child for therapy and uses them as a crutch. Young and because I loved her (of course), I was always there for her and suffered from the terror of never knowing when the ball was going to drop with her. I was always scared: woken up in the middle of the night out of deep sleep by her screaming because I had "done something wrong", "spankings" while she was intoxicated, and me constantly being held in the house unable to even ride my bike past the block or go to my friend's birthday parties because she worried about me so much and couldn't let me go. A natural parent's worries put on the extreme.

My mom did not became a devout Christian till I was in 3rd grade. This was a year after my mother's eldest sibling, Sarah, committed suicide (Overdose. Motive for suicide likely caused from the trauma of the cult she experienced more than any of her other siblings) and my mother was extremely distraught. I am almost positive that the idea of death baffles and terrifies her. This sounds incredibly terrible to say, a child about their mother, but she was not very well educated as far as logic and critical thinking goes. I partly think this has to do with the mentality of the entire family in general. Not only that, but there is a long list of history with drug and alcohol addiction, depression, self-victimization, suicidal tendencies, and child abuse (my own mother molested at a young age).

Out of anyone in my family, I would have to say am I am the only one who has "seen the light", for lack of better words. I am a very logical person naturally (but I do enjoy the hobbies of piano, song writing, singing, and music) and was always very level-headed and empathetic even as a typical "selfish, spoiled teenager". Haha.

I don't know how it happened. I don't know if it was a product of my brain, circumstance, experience, or some other influential source through film, literature, or my teenagers. It could be all of the above, but from day one when my mother embraced Christianity I was conflicted.

Young I, of course, followed my mother because who else could I trust more than my own mother, right? I listened to the sermons, I memorized all the songs (I have a knack for lyric memorization), and I enjoyed youth church and the stories.

But there was a problem.

I fretted and worried myself over heaven and hell. Was I going to go to heaven when I die? I would ask myself "If God isn't real..." but then would correct myself and fear he heard my thoughts he would know my doubts. I felt guilty about my thoughts, about my body, and - as I neared pre-teen age - about natural sexual urges. I always felt I was being watched. I always felt I was being condemned. I always felt that I was going to hell because I listened and loved secular music and because I questioned things.

It is perhaps the darkest era I can remember from 3rd grade to 8th grade.

Before I started my freshman year of high school I finally had the chance to move to my father's. My mother and I fought too much, there was too much instability and stress, and too much depression.

About my father.

I can't imagine having anymore luck in my life than being a daughter who gets the opportunity to love and know her father. We always got along perfectly and growing up even when I couldn't see him I could never resent him for him. What can I say? I'm a daddy's girl.

It was clear as soon as I was living with him that I carried some baggage with me far more than my customary airplane luggage.

I had this terrifying habit for spontaneous depression. It could be triggered by the slightest thing - a song coming on that reminded me of a memory - and my dad would watch me completely blank out and appear consumed entirely by my thoughts. I couldn't maintain a steady rep through my school work and interest in class. It was like I took the roller coaster with me that I had been trying to escape from my mother.

It took awhile for my dad to help me strip these things away from my life. But slowly and surely, it did. I could avoid depression (by reasonable means), maintain perspective, and did very well in school.

It's been almost four years since then. I have grown and learned a lot; I'm an AP english student (ended the year with an A+); I love psychology and sociology, and science is the most fascinating, and comforting thing to my logical/common sense mind.

Recently, I have been getting calls from my mom. She's been suffering from deep depressions (the ten year anniversary for her sister's suicide being recently) and she stopped taking her medication for the chemical imbalance in her brain. She uses God and Christianity as a crutch. She prays to God for help but she doesn't "pray" to her mind to find and fix the problem. I struggle knowing that she's not LIVING her life. She's waiting to die and nothing is more disheartening for me to see and watch her "live to die".

It really made me angry, I'll be honest. Looking back on the cults, religions, the history of god's and goddesses...all of it. It took advantage of my already weak mother and she's more of a child in my eyes than a parental figure. She turns to me like one and asks for advice like one.

I discovered The Afterlife yesterday and it changed my life.

I think I always knew I was atheist but, even without me realizing, the Christian religion kept me behind the bars just enough to keep me from researching it. Once I did. Wow.

I am so happy to be here, and to find a community like this one. I hope that mankind eventually embraces logic entirely and that mythology dies entirely as we advance forward into science and modernization.

I haven't told anyone yet. I'm not even sure I can tell my father. For now, I'll be satisfied to spend time with you guys learning and liberating myself until I am ready to turn to my family and share the news.

Thanks, Heidi. =)
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20-07-2012, 12:15 AM
RE: "Newborn" atheist.
That's quite an introduction!

Welcome, Heidi. Glad you could make it here.

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21-07-2012, 12:34 AM
RE: "Newborn" atheist.
Wow.

I love your... emotional intelligence? (I think that's the right word). To be able to see clearly the things that influence your mother, to be able to see past them, to still love the person but not the belief. That's special.

Welcome to the forum Smile
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21-07-2012, 01:33 AM
RE: "Newborn" atheist.
Welcome home Heidi!

Member of the Cult of Reason

The atheist is a man who destroys the imaginary things which afflict the human race, and so leads men back to nature, to experience and to reason.
-Baron d'Holbach-
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21-07-2012, 01:39 AM
RE: "Newborn" atheist.
Heidi, your story is touching. I find it very sad that you were put ina situation where you had to be the parent, and your mother the child.

I never into detail about what happened to me as a child, but let me just say, its not far off.

My parents were fudies, and they firmly believed in spare the rod, spoil the child. I never blamed them, but I blamed there religion.

Now, I am an atheist, not only an atheistic, but an anti-theist. And I am out to my parents... My best advice would be not to tell your mother, unless she can handle it.

Your father might be able to handle it, and you should test run with him. When you are planning on telling him (If you are too.)

Welcome to the forums, and welcome to the family. You'll love it here.

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Credit goes to UndercoverAtheist.
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21-07-2012, 08:37 AM
RE: "Newborn" atheist.
Welcome aboard!

" Generally speaking, the errors in religion are dangerous; those in philosophy only ridiculous."
David Hume
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21-07-2012, 09:20 AM
RE: "Newborn" atheist.
Welcome aboard, Heidi.

It is people like you, young people who open their eyes and search for knowledge rather than insert "god" as answer for every unknown concept or process, who give me much hope for the future of humankind.

I think your asessment is correct, don't come out as of yet. Wait until you are more secure in your newly found identity and have been around long enough to know how to counter arguments made by theists. Then wait for the right time as far as your parent's psychology goes. You'll know when it's right or necessary.

You'll be full age soon, meanwhile it's better to just learn new things and prepare for what's to come.

Feel free to just ask when life throws you issues, while there is a lot of crazy humor here, we also are very supportive and people here give their honest opinions for you to pick and choose from.

Good luck!

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Science is the process we've designed to be responsible for generating our best guess as to what the fuck is going on. Girly Man
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21-07-2012, 02:50 PM
RE: "Newborn" atheist.
welcome!

-summum ius, summa iniuria.-M. T. Cicero
-I will show you fear in a handful of dust.-T.S. Eliot
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ἡ φύσις οὐδὲν ποιεῖ ἅλματα

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