Telling Spouse About New-found Atheism
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01-12-2010, 03:34 PM
Telling Spouse About New-found Atheism
I'm new here, and I have a dilemma.
I was raised in an atheist household, and between the ages of 28-40 I joined AA, who bamboozled me into believing that in order to become sober and save my life, it was necessary for me to believe in a "Higher Power". At that, the most vulnerable point in my life, I somehow - DON'T ASK ME HOW - I somehow started believing in some version of a god. I didn't become religious, but I guess I became "spritual". I actually believed there was a GOD. I can't describe how bizarre this is to me.
Recently, here in the UK there were several Richard Dawkins documentaries on tv, and they hit me like a hammer right in the forehead.
In other words, I was re-introduced to the atheism and reason of my youth.
So, for the past 4-5 months or so, I have been watching videos, reading anything I can find about atheism, and I have spent any spare moment scouring the internet for as much information and affirmation I can find.
My problem is this: I married a man about 3 years ago who was raised a Southern Baptist (although he hates religion now, he does still believe there is a god). So, he believes in god, and I am full of the Word of Dawkins..!
I have subscribed to the New Humanist magazine, so they're lying all over the house, and I have recently joined the British Humanist Association, so their literature is all over the place, too, but he isn't much of a reader, so has never really noticed them. I have not yet come out and told my husband about my atheism, and I am genuinely afraid to tell him - not because he's a scary guy, but because he might find the difference in our belief systems to be too much... I'm almost afraid of disappointing him. Hm... it's hard to articulate why I don't want to tell him yet.
Does anyone have any ideas or suggestions, or has anyone had a similar experience..?
Much thanks....!
- Jody
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01-12-2010, 04:01 PM
RE: Telling Spouse About New-found Atheism
I think if you trusted him enough to marry him and thus commit to the relationship the rest of your life, that you can be honest with him about who you are now, as an atheist.

The first relationship any of us have is with ourself. We learn who we are every moment we're alive. We learn our strengths and weaknesses, at every hurdle that comes before us. First and foremost you have to be true to yourself, in order to bring that woman fully and honestly into any relationship.

You want your husband to love you for who you are. Not for who he wants you to be. If you live your life to please him, you'll sacrifice your true self. If he can't love you fully, as your honest and true self, then he doesn't love you as a woman that must live her truth in her personal life.
Never compromise who you are, so as to please someone else. You have to live with yourself, while others come and go.

I wish you all the best.
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01-12-2010, 04:13 PM
RE: Telling Spouse About New-found Atheism
Thanks very much for your reply, and I agree... I want desperately to be honest with him, I am just at a complete loss when it comes to even bringing up such a sensitive subject. This is something I need to do for myself, I just want to make sure I do it as gently and sensitively as possible.... I'm hoping to hear maybe a tip or two to help me, because I have never been in such a strange situation - completely uncharted territory..!
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01-12-2010, 04:42 PM
RE: Telling Spouse About New-found Atheism
I'd make a wonderful dinner, with candlelight and flowers on the table as centerpiece. His favorite, including dessert, with lovely soothing music playing in the background. And then while in the midst of it I'd gently say; I've learned something about myself recently, and I'd like to share it with you honey...
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01-12-2010, 08:25 PM
RE: Telling Spouse About New-found Atheism
Be honest. Is the best option to do. I love my wife, even though she is a creationist.

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“Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.” ~ Gautama Buddha
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01-12-2010, 09:28 PM
RE: Telling Spouse About New-found Atheism
I think that if you have left Atheist and Humanist magazines around the house he already knows and faith is such a small part of his life that he likely doesn't care very much.

Be honest with him but don't be too surprised if he's already well aware. Be gentle though. I know it takes most people that I've spoken to about getting out of faith a while before they could fully let go of it all.
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