(Note: I started typing this a long time ago and have been writing it a little at a time. I apologize for the extensive delay.)
Although I started a Twitter and blog for my use in godlessness, my girlfriend is more atheistic than me in a lot of ways. Although I feel strongly about my lack of beliefs, she came to them all on her own, something I sometimes doubt I would ever have been able to do. I became an nonbeliever in part because my family left the church and I was raised from then on in a very scientific environment. Without these events, I may never have thought it possible to question god, as I sometimes fear. But Nicole (that’s her name) grew up in a very religious environment. Her mother is a very strict catholic and many attributes that I find poor in parents. Her mothers parents immigrated from Italy and were/are worse than her mom.
And yet beside all this, she managed to question it all at an early age. Much earlier than I did, she thought that everything was a little ridiculous. This is something I envy.
Maybe a few weeks before she met me, Nicole told her mother she was an atheist. Her mom did not react very calmly. She tried to force Nicole to go to church and get confirmed. Eventually, the deal was that she had to get confirmed into the church, after which she could do whatever she likes. Despite this, her mom has harassed her several times to attend, and on the subject of religion, often to the point of tears. My girlfriends parents have made her cry. My frustration when this happens cannot be expressed. There is nothing I can do.
I remember the day Nicole’s parents found out I am an atheist. Never have they said anything to me, but it was one of the days where they yelled at her. We don’t know how they knew, and Nicole said she didn’t care, she was so upset. I care very much, and sometimes I wonder who or what violated my privacy in this way. I have a few theories that I might as well share to make this post even longer.
My first is that they found out through Facebook. They may have become curious about me, and checked my information. I have under religion pretty clearly “atheist.” Back then I think I even included a helpful little “it means I don’t believe in god” in case people were confused.
My second is that they found out through other parents. There are several people in school, of not practically everyone, who know I am an atheist. It is not entirely unlikely they told their parents, any of whom could tell another set of parents, especially those who have a daughter I am dating. I don’t particularly like this one and I think it is a bit unlikely.
The past two I actually thought up as I typed this, after putting more thought into it. This third is the one I have believed for quite a while (this took place several months ago, not all that long after we were dating). It is that someone both me and Nicole know well, and I have come to dislike. She is one of the few people I know whom I truly dislike. I used to consider her my friend, but I now consider her very annoying. I once liked to talk about religion with her, as it was something I found interesting and was sort of a hobby. She thought I was trying to “convert” her, something I don’t think she is smart enough for. Something that I think really severed our friendship was a little after she came back from Jesus Camp, and she called up Nicole for sort of an intervention, telling her to break up with me. ( I don’t think she grasped that Nicole was just as atheist as I was.) Nicole laughed and hung up. Although I found it mildly funny, I still felt betrayed, and you can hardly stay friends with someone who does that to you. I’m not the only one who dislikes her. She seems to think she can talk absolute shit about a person and still remain friends with them. Sometimes I wonder if she has any anymore, as pretty much everyone I know dislikes her.
Now, I don’t want to give you the impression that she’s a victim of bullying or anything; no one necessarily picks on her, and part of the reason I dislike her so much is that she talks shit about so many people of who I consider friends, something I am completely intolerant towards. Rationally or not, this has caused my feelings.
My reasoning for suspecting this girl of “telling on me” is her previous disregard to my privacy in an attempt to get us to break up. I don’t quite remember which came first due to how long ago it was. Nicole may not care but I do very much.
Nothing was ever said to me about the subject from her parents, but there seemed to be a sudden loss of trust. Before, they trusted my fully, or at least as much as could be expected towards a daughter’s boyfriend. But afterwards they seemed ever so slightly more hostile, and I was no longer trusted alone with her, as if I would rape her of they turned their back. Although her parents often frustrated me, it still hurt that they would treat me like that, and that it seemed to be connected with my atheism.
I think I am going to end this rambling on the note that the 11 of February will be our ‘anniversary’, marking one year of dating, of which I am quite excited about.
Follow me on twitter @AtheistEvolving
Edit: part of the reason Nicole’s parents distrusted me was they thought I converted her. I didn’t; she was an atheist before I knew her.