Ladies,

  Listen up. I have a bone to pick. We are an under represented population. (Women who are also Atheists that is.) In school we are taught to be nice and lady-like. (I know this is a generalization, but just roll with me here...) In the church, which we have now left, we are taught to submit to our husbands and keep silent. Once an Atheist...NOW WHAT? How do we break free from the constraints that religion has placed upon us? How do we remain feminine, beautiful, and yet be strong and forthcoming about our beliefs and why we hold them? I'm hoping to create some discussion around what it means to be Atheist for us ladies.

Ladies, what have been your experiences having left a male dominated religion and venturing into a belief system which truly defines us as equals when it comes to all human rights?

Do any of you still struggle with aftermath of religious thinking about yourself or your role as a wife/mother, etc?

Men: Feel free to chip in with your insights as well. This isn't battle of the sexes so I don't want to hear anything about that. Your insights are valuable to the discussion. Thanks!

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Mostly, I do not pay attention to numbers, but even here some men tend to be patronizing toward women who comment on a subject. Then I leave that discussion.

Ladies, what have been your experiences having left a male dominated religion and venturing into a belief system which truly defines us as equals when it comes to all human rights?

Such a great topic! 

For me, leaving a fundamentalist background was the easy part. Trying to figure out everything beyond leaving was the hard part. When you value as a person is placed on a mans approval of the condition of your hymen, it can take a while to find your own worth. That garbage becomes so deeply ingrain that it can be hard to figure out who you really are. 

I was still a Christian when I married. For some reason I thought I had to stop being "me" to be a wife instead of seeing that my husband liked the real me. I would strive to be the perfect Christian wife/woman-subservient, meek, and modest. Taking care not to spend too much time or money on myself. To give all I had to the family. 
Well, that pretty much drove me insane. It was so terribly unrealistic. It took counseling, a great deal of introspection, and eventually leaving the faith for me to understand my worth. 

Now, I would tell you that we break free from the constraints that religion and society put on us by knowing and being confident in who we are. There is no reason you can not be strong, confident, intelligent, and sexy at the same time. Those things are not mutually exclusive. I am strong-willed and feminine and I like myself that way. :D

Being an atheist has been one of the most freeing experiences of my life, especially as a woman. Where religion allowed men around me to shut me up with Bible verses, I can now comment without apology. It is hugely liberating. I wouldn't have it any other way. 

WOW! Thanks for sharing that Jenny W.T. I already want to "friend" you. I totally get what you're saying. My experiences have been very similar - it's almost eerie.

Trying to figure out everything beyond leaving was the hard part. When you value as a person is placed on a mans approval of the condition of your hymen, it can take a while to find your own worth. That garbage becomes so deeply ingrain that it can be hard to figure out who you really are. 

I couldn't have said it better myself. Awesome. It sure is a fun process though. Every day becomes brighter and clearer. I wish you the best on your continuous journey. It's nice to know we're not alone.

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