I have an elderly aunt who lives out of state and is one of the most beautiful people you would ever meet.
She has taught herself how to navigate the web and I receive emails from her all the time. The problem is she regularly sends/forwards me messages that have a christian message/joke/video. This wonderful lady is very deeply rooted in christianity and I know it would be very upsetting for her to be made aware of my atheism. I have started to have her emails directly dumped to trash as I grew tired of the messaging but I fear I might not receive something of importance.
It would kill me to brake her heart as I know it would.
1. Go ahead and tell her in the most respectful manner possible
2. Just dump the emails and hope you don't miss anything of substance
3. Wade thru the messages and try to "zone out" the christian content
That's it in a nutshell. She would never condemn me.
I am in a similar predicament. Of course, my grandparents haven't learned to navigate the web, and they are not Christian, but Jewish.
The problem I have, though, is that I know, eventually, I'll have no choice but to tell them, because I'm working on my first album, and between USA Blues, I Don't Believe, Nobody's Fault but Mine, and Hello, it's pretty damn obvious that I'm an atheist. And they both have already stated that they want a copy of my album when it comes out.
They are both children of the 50's, and grew up when atheism was synonymous with the "Red Scare" and so on. I already know they are not fans of atheists. Before I was out publically [my mom and brother knew, but that was it], my grandfather went on a tirade about a group of atheists in Connecticut who got angry at their synagogue for wanting to hold a Hanukkah service in the public park (admittedly, I share their anger at this... the synagogue paid for the right to use this small park about a block away from the shul... why shouldn't they be allowed?). He and my Dad went off on atheism for about 10 minutes at the table with me, rather uncomfortable (which my Dad noticed, and that's how I ended up coming out to him).
Both of them are beautiful, kind, loving people (otherwise), and I know they wouldn't disown me, but I also know that it will break their hearts (and they are both already quite sick), and that makes me so sad.
So I share your question... what should I do?
If you dont want to just come out and say your an atheist you could let them down slowly. That is what i did. I let them think i was still christian but then talked about things i found illogical and wrong with the religion/bible/belief. That way i slowly got them to have an understanding of my point of view without ruining the whole process by first slapping them in the face with me being an atheist. after a while i told them i was agnostic and got them to accept this, then after another while i told them and got them to accept me being an atheist.
This way it wasnt such a great shock to the system for them