I have been visiting this site often for the last year or so but this is the first time I felt compelled to participate in the forums.
I grew up in a Muslim family and spent half of my childhood in Saudi Arabia and the second half here in the States. My dad studies Islam at university eventuality obtaining a masters degree in Islamic theology and as a teenager I saw my self following in his footsteps. But shortly before college I decided I wanted to become a lawyer instead.
It wasn’t until college that I began to question my inherited faith, largely due to my exposure to and interest in philosophy and political theory where I was exposed to ideas which contradicted what I grew up with. I also dated a girl who was a somewhat religious Christian and started going to church with her, of course things didn’t work out, despite my weakening faith in Islam I has no interest in becoming a Christian after being exposed to what they believed in.
It wasn’t until I finally reached lways school that I began to read Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris and Bertrand Russel that I became convinced that there is no solid evidence for a belief in a god. By the time u graduated I considered my self an athiest. However my upbringing still had a big influence on me and I dated a Muslim girl who wasn’t religious at all at the time but was Muslim so that was good enough for the parents. I fell in love with her and we got married.
A few years in she started to develop an interest in Islam and over time has become more devout and naturally has wanted me to become more devout as well. For most of the time I have been content with being a closeted athiest.
Sometimes I try to bring up issues I have with the faith it subtly bring up questions about the faith but she has expressed that she dosnt understand how anyone could be an athiest and not believe in God.
Lately I have had a feeling that I want to open up about how I truly view things and come out as an athiest. However I know that will likely have serious consequences for my relationship with my wife as well as my family in general.
Has anyone gone through a similar experience or have any thoughts they would like to share concerning this issue?
Everyone in my family are devout Christians who aren’t open to other ideas. They do not question their faith and they do not challenge their faith.
If they found out I wasn’t a Christian, it would shatter their worlds. They would attack me and blame me and look down on me as less of a person. I know they love me, but because they believe so strongly that I am headed for hell, they would lose their minds.
Most people would tell you that if they truly loved you, they would accept you the way that you are.
But I’ve never believed that.
So yeah, I’ve gone through a similar experience. And I’m sorry to say, I don’t know the solution :/
@YH83, Hi Ed, I am a Atheist. I am happy about it and and quite against Religion now. I was raised Christian and when I was born my mother was part of a very strict version. She left but stayed a Christian. I ended up going to a strict Christian school which is what started me seeing the lies of Religion. before this I had never questioned it.
When I left that school I started reading books and learning. I answered questions in school based on my religion text… and became a bit of a laughing stock for it (I.e. How can that happen? Noah had a flood! The world is only 7000 years old). I then saw what were lies. I felt really bad that I had been brainwashed by people. It made me really mad.
I did not know what a Atheist was… I only realized much later after I read Richard Dawkins TGD. After that book I changed. I saw how sick and wicked religion was and is.
I think religion should be mocked and shown for the fairy tale it is. It upsets me that children are brainwashed with this shit.
My mother over the last few months now calls herself an Atheist. Mainly due to a movie she watched that finally made all my talks sink in (Took long enough). The movie was called “The invention of lying” strange how that did it… but it did/ I now have a house without religious junk.
My friends who were from Islam found it hard to tell their family. Some had very hard times. All are happy they do not live a lie though.
Good luck. PM me if you want to talk.
It’s unfortunate that this matter has to be treated as ‘coming out’.
In my personal opinion, your wife should be just as supportive and respectful of your beliefs as you are of hers. So long as you both haven’t agreed to share your faith together for ‘eternity’, then it should be acceptable for you to have a differing view.
As far as your kids (if you have any) are concerned: I feel like they should be taught about (not indoctrinated with) both of your beliefs so that they understand your differing perspectives. They should be given the choice as to what they believe (not necessarily one or the other, maybe something entirely different). Unfortunately, I know that religions like Christianity require parents to teach their kids to follow the same faith. If this problem ever arises, then it’s up to you to figure out common-ground with your wife.
I am not trying to give you marital advice, but I feel that relationships should not be one-sided and you should not be afraid to have some individuality. If it is one-sided, I would recommend addressing the issue with her. You are equally entitled to your own belief, and there shouldn’t be any pressure for you to give up your personal freedom for hers, especially if this could last your whole lifetime.
The problem with religious-based marriages is that both parties are expected to share the same belief system. Forever. I hope that’s not your case, because if so, there’s not much more insight I can offer you.