Author Topic: New member to the HAF  (Read 6977 times)

Anti-antidisestablishmentarianism

  • Formally known as Robert
  • Knows What LætusAtheos Means
  • **
  • Posts: 367
  • Gender: Male
  • Prejudices are what fools use for reason -Voltaire
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #30 on: May 01, 2012, 07:32:53 PM »
She has known you for ten years so she should still know that you are the same person.  I was with a girl for a very short time who said the same thing.  I told her I'm atheist and she said she didn't want  to speak about it. Ever.  So obviously that didn't work out.  It's probably better that you waited this long to tell her.  If you had done so earlier it would have probably broken you up.  Hopefully in time she will learn to live by the principals in that book rather than the exact words.  Wish I knew more on the subject, but most girls I have dealt with were Christians who could care less about what their man believed in. They weren't stuck on the idea of eternal hellfire.
"All murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets." -Voltaire
"By all means let's be open-minded, but not so open-minded that our brains drop out". Richard Dawkins

Amicale

  • Nerdy cat lady
  • Guardian of Reason
  • *****
  • Posts: 5484
  • Gender: Female
  • Nom nom nom
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #31 on: May 01, 2012, 08:20:53 PM »
Angler, thank you for sharing your story. That was brave of you.

I've had a similar experience as an atheist. With my ex-girlfriend (we didn't break up over anything at all related to religion), I also had to come out to her as a non-believer, although at the time it was as an agnostic and she was a liberal Anglican. At first, she was a little worried. It wasn't a huge deal to her per se, she just wished we were still on the same page in terms of believing in a God, and she was worried that maybe I'd become a raving skeptic who'd want her to stop going to church, etc. I tried to reassure her that I loved her as much as I always had, and that no longer believing in God wouldn't change a thing.

In the end, though, I think what convinced her things would be fine was that I stayed the same person I'd always been. I didn't start to bash her beliefs, I respected her ideas the same way I always had, we had fun together like we always did, etc... it took a bit of time, but what she needed was evidence over time, and I was happy to give that to her.

I'm thinking that maybe, your wife just might have similar concerns? She's wondering what your reaction to her will be -- if you still think she's smart, if you'll still look up to her as being a good person, if you'll still treat her the same way, etc. I hate to say it because it's so cliche, but sometimes time really does help. She'll see you being the same husband you've always been, and that might help her relax. It won't be much what you say that'll convince her, it might be how you treat her and what you do.

I'm cheering for you guys. I know it's rough now, and I wish you a smoother road ahead as things start to settle down.


"Our lives are not our own. From womb to tomb we are bound to others. By every crime and act of kindness we birth our future." - Cloud Atlas

"To live in the hearts of those we leave behind is to never die." -Carl Sagan

AnimatedDirt

  • Banned
  • Has an Invisible Dragon in Their Garage
  • *****
  • Posts: 3211
  • Gender: Male
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #32 on: May 01, 2012, 08:30:31 PM »
Angler, thank you for sharing your story. That was brave of you.
Indeed.

Quote from: Amicale
I'm thinking that maybe, your wife just might have similar concerns? She's wondering what your reaction to her will be -- if you still think she's smart, if you'll still look up to her as being a good person, if you'll still treat her the same way, etc. I hate to say it because it's so cliche, but sometimes time really does help. She'll see you being the same husband you've always been, and that might help her relax. It won't be much what you say that'll convince her, it might be how you treat her and what you do.
...which would be my concern to some degree given the way most atheists think of Christians...that's not to say he will/does, but when a group comes together, it seems "we" tend to speak more freely.

Quote from: Amicale
I'm cheering for you guys. I know it's rough now, and I wish you a smoother road ahead as things start to settle down.
As am I.

Angler28

  • Beginning to See the Wedge
  • *
  • Posts: 44
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #33 on: May 01, 2012, 09:59:36 PM »
Very true words you guys(gals?), and thanks. I agree and think the best thing will be time. I don't intend to debate with her about her beliefs, in fact, I'm not the debating type at all. :)

I'm sure she's thinking about it, and waiting to see if I change. I think she has this notion that all atheist's go around bashing christians and religion all day and are out to deconvert everyone. I know that there are some that do this, but the one's I know do not and I think most of us don't. You're right, I'll just have to prove to her that I am the same person.

One thing I forgot to say in my 'story' was that when our exchange was ending, I told her that when she was ready to talk about it, I was ready to explain. Coming to this descision was not easy and I didn't make the choice lightly. I knew that I would more than likely be alienating friends and family members, but it all comes down to being honest with yourself and not just going with the flow simply because everyone else is.

That's my outlook on it anyway. Thanks for all the advice and shared stories. I don't want you all to think that I'm here looking for a marraige counselor lol. I'm here to get to know some like minded people and make some new friends.  :)
« Last Edit: May 01, 2012, 10:01:58 PM by Angler28 »
"The worst day of fishing is better than the best day at work."

Ali

  • Knows where her towel is.
  • Wears a Colander Hat for Special Occasions
  • *****
  • Posts: 6500
  • Gender: Female
  • An Equal Opportunity Mr. Hyde
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #34 on: May 01, 2012, 10:22:29 PM »
Angler, "here" is a great place to get to get to know people and make new friends.

Anyway, I agree with what Amicale said; time speaks volumes.  It's hard, I know.  When I have a clash with my husband, I always want everything to be alright between us right away, and that doesn't always happen, sometimes it can't happen.  Sometimes the only thing that helps is time and proving that things are going to be okay by making things okay, one day at a time.  It's easy to make promises "This won't change our relationship!" but in the end those are just words, and they don't mean anything if you don't live up to them.  Showing her that this isn't a tradegy in your relationship, day after day, week after week, that's the undeniable proof that she needs.

Anyway, welcome again to HAF, and I hope you enjoy your time here.

Firebird

  • Taste's like chicken
  • Touched by His Noodly Appendage
  • *****
  • Posts: 2813
  • Gender: Male
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #35 on: May 02, 2012, 04:15:17 AM »
Well, there's no doubt it will come up again. I'm sure you know that, but sometimes it's good for someone else to state what you already know.
Personally, in a situation like this it helps for me to write down my own personal thoughts somewhere, a journal where you feel it is safe to express exactly what you're feeling and perhaps rehearse how you want to talk to her. Alternatively, you can use that journal to write a letter to her, even if it's a letter that you don't intend to send, to say exactly what it is you're feeling and why you care about her above all else. If nothing else, that letter will help figure out exactly how to talk to her next time. And perhaps that letter is what you'll end up sending her in the end.
Good luck!
"Great, replace one book about an abusive, needy asshole with another." - Will (moderator) on replacing hotel Bibles with "Fifty Shades of Grey"

Angler28

  • Beginning to See the Wedge
  • *
  • Posts: 44
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #36 on: May 02, 2012, 04:23:59 AM »
That is a very good idea Firebird. I attempted to bring the subject up today, but it was quickly shot down so I left it alone. She did however say to me that the only reason we are still together now is because she has faith that I will come back to Christianity. It looks like my only option now is to just give it time and show her that I am the same person. I really believe when she says she doesn't want to hear about it at all.

For the first time in my life, I'm truly afraid of losing my best friend.  :(
"The worst day of fishing is better than the best day at work."

Sweetdeath

  • Pink Pony of the Apocalypse
  • Don't Pray in My School, and I Won't Think in Your Church
  • *****
  • Posts: 7432
  • Coffee is my religion.
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #37 on: May 02, 2012, 05:01:30 AM »
I suppose if it were me, i would say get out, but since you have kids, the gameplan does tend to change.


Like the others said; maybe you can try to.give her time to adapt and then speak to her more? I do hope it works out, because what a shame for a relationship to end over religious differences. Or logic vs imaginary friends...
Law 35- "You got to go with what works." - Robin Lefler

Wiggum:"You have that much faith in me, Homer?"
Homer:"No! Faith is what you have in things that don't exist. Your awesomeness is real."

“I was thinking that perhaps this thing called God does not exist. Because He cannot save any one of us. No matter how we pray, He doesn’t mend our wounds.

DeterminedJuliet

  • The Stone Lady of HAF
  • Global Moderator
  • Blessing Her Holy Hooves
  • *****
  • Posts: 4396
  • Gender: Female
  • Don't Blink
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #38 on: May 02, 2012, 05:26:55 AM »
I suppose if it were me, i would say get out, but since you have kids, the gameplan does tend to change.

Really? If it was someone you loved deeply, you'd give up that easily? Trying to work through a difference and realizing that it's irreconcilable over a course of time is one thing, but throwing away an emotionally invested relationship because a brand new issue hasn't been resolved in one month seems a bit hasty, doesn't it? Lordie, if my husband and I felt that way, we'd have been divorced ages ago. Actually, we wouldn't have lasted long enough to get married. 
« Last Edit: May 02, 2012, 05:28:33 AM by DeterminedJuliet »
"We’ve thought of life by analogy with a journey, with pilgrimage which had a serious purpose at the end, and the THING was to get to that end; success, or whatever it is, or maybe heaven after you’re dead. But, we missed the point the whole way along; It was a musical thing and you were supposed to sing, or dance, while the music was being played.

Amicale

  • Nerdy cat lady
  • Guardian of Reason
  • *****
  • Posts: 5484
  • Gender: Female
  • Nom nom nom
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #39 on: May 02, 2012, 05:46:10 AM »
I suppose if it were me, i would say get out, but since you have kids, the gameplan does tend to change.

Really? If it was someone you loved deeply, you'd give up that easily? Trying to work through a difference and realizing that it's irreconcilable over a course of time is one thing, but throwing away an emotionally invested relationship because a brand new issue hasn't been resolved in one month seems a bit hasty, doesn't it? Lordie, if my husband and I felt that way, we'd have been divorced ages ago. Actually, we wouldn't have lasted long enough to get married.  

I agree, DJ. Our grandparents came from the generation where people stayed married for 50+ years because in their lives, if something was broken, they fixed it (or at least tried REALLY hard to) rather than throwing it away. I think it's more useful to cultivate that attitude, rather than tossing a relationship out the window like a candy wrapper, just because of a fairly new issue that's almost certainly possible to resolve happily.


"Our lives are not our own. From womb to tomb we are bound to others. By every crime and act of kindness we birth our future." - Cloud Atlas

"To live in the hearts of those we leave behind is to never die." -Carl Sagan

Angler28

  • Beginning to See the Wedge
  • *
  • Posts: 44
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #40 on: May 02, 2012, 01:40:47 PM »
That's true, I was raised by my grandparents and they have been married almost 60 years now. I will do whatever I can to keep my marraige going, but I know that ultimately I can't force her to stay with me. All I can do is show her that I still care about her and the kids and do everything I can to show her that I'm still a good person and not a monster. In the end though, she will have to make the choice to stay or go, and I think she will end up staying.
"The worst day of fishing is better than the best day at work."

xSilverPhinx

  • Non Dvcor
  • Global Moderator
  • Luxembourg Trembles!
  • *****
  • Posts: 16946
  • Gender: Female
  • I Spy With My Googly Eyes...
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #41 on: May 02, 2012, 02:43:37 PM »
If I had to guess, I would say she probably feels like she doesn't know you anymore (especially since you suddenly, at least to her, came out as an atheist which probably feels like something totally alien to her.)

What are her beliefs on what happens to non believers? And on an atheists morality? Is she defensive of what she feels should be the proper upbringing of your kids? What does she say and think about atheists in general?  I don't want to come off as too curious (I understand if you don't answer them on a public forum), but these infos are lacking, and probably something you should take into consideration.

But anyways, the worst is probably over, if she didn't leave you when you dropped the bombshell, she probably won't.
Give no mercy to your fear.



The Magic Pudding

  • The black swan of trespass
  • Blessing Her Holy Hooves
  • *****
  • Posts: 4913
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #42 on: May 02, 2012, 03:51:55 PM »
I suppose if it were me, i would say get out, but since you have kids, the gameplan does tend to change.

Really? If it was someone you loved deeply, you'd give up that easily? ....

I agree, DJ. Our grandparents came from the generation where people stayed married for 50+ years....

Going with Sweetdeath's scenario of no kids, but a relationship that's lasted say ten years, totally committed.
Your partners not a churchgoer, you say you don't believe and they write you off just like that.
I can't fully place my self in this scenario, I think I'd have to ask do I mean so little to you?
I don't think I like this theoretical woman, I think I'll let her go.
She might not have been happy before this came up though.


Angler28

  • Beginning to See the Wedge
  • *
  • Posts: 44
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #43 on: May 02, 2012, 04:32:57 PM »
If I had to guess, I would say she probably feels like she doesn't know you anymore (especially since you suddenly, at least to her, came out as an atheist which probably feels like something totally alien to her.)

What are her beliefs on what happens to non believers? And on an atheists morality? Is she defensive of what she feels should be the proper upbringing of your kids? What does she say and think about atheists in general?  I don't want to come off as too curious (I understand if you don't answer them on a public forum), but these infos are lacking, and probably something you should take into consideration.

But anyways, the worst is probably over, if she didn't leave you when you dropped the bombshell, she probably won't.

The thing is, she's never came across as religious before now. I knew that she was Christian, but we've never been to church together, never even talked about it. As far as what she believes about non-believers, she is certain that I'm going to hell if I don't come back to Christianity.  It gets even wierder as she is totally fine with her friends or other family members being atheist, but not me. She ever said that when our kids get older and can make the decision for themselves and the choose atheism, then that's ok with her. She is sending mixed signals it seems. I brought up the morality issue and she told me that she knew I was a good person, but if I don't believe then we can't be a family in heaven for all eternity.

This seems to be the main issue. She is scared of hell and letting that influence her belief. She is afraid to even think there is no afterlife. I talk to her a little more last night, but she cut me off and said she didn't want to hear it at all. She then said that the only reason we are still together after I told her I am an atheist, is that she is certain that if she gets me back into church, I will change my mind. I then asked her if so in five years, I'm still an atheist, she would leave. She didn't answer.

*edit-   I know it's hard for some to not understand why I want to stay. It's more than just an emotional investment to me. She is my best friend and the only person that I trust with my life. She is the mother of my children. I came from a broken home. My mother died when I was 4, my dad disowned me at that time saying that I wasn't his, so my grandparents (mothers side) adopted me. I have grown up promising myself that I would not let this happen with my kids. That we would be a family through and through and to let something like religion mess that up? It irritates me beyond all imagining and it confirms, to me at least all the horrible things that religion does. She knows and believes that I am a good person, that I have never hurt anyone, I have never layed a finger on her or the kids. (She came from a relationship where her ex would beat her so bad, she feared for her life.) None of this seems to matter though, because I simply don't believe in god. To me it's like saying, "You're a really nice guy, you have the kind of morals and sense of direction in life that I have been searching for. You would be perfect for me...but go fuck yourself.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2012, 04:40:31 PM by Angler28 »
"The worst day of fishing is better than the best day at work."

The Magic Pudding

  • The black swan of trespass
  • Blessing Her Holy Hooves
  • *****
  • Posts: 4913
Re: New member to the HAF
« Reply #44 on: May 02, 2012, 04:46:23 PM »
I wouldn't mind hearing about the finding of fish.
Crawling out of the tent,
mist on the river, water over stone...