My 16 year old daughter is getting hit from all sides for admitting to being an atheist.  My daughter doesn't drink, doesn't do drugs, and hasn't had sex yet..... but she is going to hell according to all of her friends who just happen to do ALL OF THE ABOVE!  

She is a very smart kid and usually just laughs it off and occasionally tells her "friends" that she isn't really an atheist, she just believes in Odin and bases that on of the lack of Ice Giants still roaming the earth. That Odin at least kept THAT promise, a far better record than the christian god.  Blank stares usually follow.

What are some short and sweet retorts she can use?  And bare in mind that, quite obviously she is dealing with kids that have sub room temperature IQs.  

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Or you start deconstructing the bible. They looove that.

you can tell her that god forgives everything, so jokes on them. she's not going to hell!

oh yeah you can also tell her yahweh from think atheist forgives her. So here is the proof.

First of all Chuck, you have a smart kid there! She's already one the right track, when it comes to explaining herself to her peers. Have her memorize this, then put it into her own words and use it as her stock answer to these queries:

"I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours."
-- Steven H. Roberts--

Something like:

"Do you believe in Zeus? No? Why not? (Answer) Then you're an atheist, aren't you? And that's why I don't believe in Yehweh --"

THESE are right on the money!

Chuck, it seems to me from what you are saying that the issue is that her believing friends are antagonizing her, but then I see you turning around and acting like you can solve the issue by encouraging her to antagonize them back. I mean no disrespect, but shouldn't you encourage her to do the opposite of what they are doing? I read your post and all I see is you demonizing and idiotizing them, as if that will somehow mend the relationships that have been broken by opposing world views, and I can only assume that attitude is going to rub off on her. If what you say is true, that 99% of the kids in her school are Christians, then she will sooner lose all of her friends than deconvert a single one. My advice is to drop the issue of religion, but encourage her to talk about it with humility when it does come up, making it a point NOT to put down the other side.

In all cases, encourage her to BE the friend to those who are only being "friends" to her. When the other kids tell their parents about her, hopefully she won't come across the same way that they do to you.

This is true, Jerod, but then again these kids are members of a Bronze Age death cult that ritualistically emulates cannibalism on a regular basis.  It's pretty frightening to be around such people but especially so for a child.

@Blaine - RE: "theism can and should be countered:

If she were living in the real world Blaine, I would agree with you 100%, because if she encounters TOO hostile an environment, she could just walk away and find a new one. But as it is, she's not, she's in a captive environment where word-of-mouth spreads rapidly, and her only means of walking away, would involve changing schools, which she shouldn't even have to consider. She needs to keep her views, but find a way to coexist without antagonizing

I am more in tune with Blaine as far as being "AntiTheist" (never heard that before, but I LIKE IT!) But I agree completely with archaeopteryx (THAT is a mouthful... from here on known to me as Arch!) that she is just looking to push back a bit to show she is not going to sit back and be inundated by such over-the-top NONSENSE.

@Chuck - RE: "from here on known to me as Arch!" - that's what all my friends call me, R. K. Opteryx is so formal --

Me too, I'm really looking forward to Thanksgiving! Now THERE'S a drumstick you can really sink your teeth into!

That's the enigma of being a transitional species - is it more appropriate to say First Bird, or Last Dinosaur?


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