Hi, I am new here. I know I was raised as a Christian and now the thought of even stepping into a church literally makes me sick. I am truly bothered because almost my entire family (besides siblings and I'm pretty sure my mom is a closet atheist) believe in God and think atheism is horrible. Now that wouldn't be so bad, but now I have a three year old daughter who they will want to push there beliefs on. Before I could spare their fears of my eternal soul burning in hell by just pretending I believed something I didn't. I have come to the conclusion that I will have to tell them (Mainly, my Dad and Grandmother) that I do not believe and do not want my daughter raised with anyone's beliefs pushed on her. I am not even going to push my non-beliefs on her, I don't want her to have to go through the real hell I went through of indoctrination and being taught what to fear. I was terrified of going to hell even years after I left my religion. Any suggestions? Btw, my family are the judgmental, cannot be reasoned with, using the bible as the ultimate source of argument, because-God-said-so, your going to hell if you don't believe, the devil is making you think this way-Christians. I feel hopeless!

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Welcome to Think Atheist Amy. Thanks for sharing. I don't have advice because I have not been in that kind of a situation. I'm sure others here will have advice. Please keep us posted.

I like the idea of the letter. I think if you expect them to argue with you to the point where you need to walk out, it may be a good idea to write down what you want to say. This way you can think about how to phrase your words and can put across everything that needs to be said to them without interruptions and angry minds that won't listen. They may also get a chance to think about what you say before you see them and before they can respond, it may give time for any disrespectful responses on their side to dull down.

Welcome to the site!

I agree with Bill Green. You have to set boundaries with them and be ready to take away privileges when they don't respect your wishes.  When my mother became a hard core x-tian I had to tell her if she kept sending me her propaganda, she would be excluded from my life completely.  She quickly got the point though our relationship is mostly non-existent now.

Thanks everyone for the advice! I am such a procrastinator though, part of me wishes I could just avoid the whole situation, but last week my daughter folded her hands (she is three) and said, "cwose yer eyes." Although it was adorable, I was not very happy about it. Should I just wait until a situation comes up or just start a conversation? 

You can try giving them the benefit of the doubt for now but if they are anything like my family, they won't take your position into consideration before trying to spread their nonsense to your child.  Or you could just make sure your daughter isn't left alone with them.

That is so true, every time they say "just pray about it" or "God will provide," I can just feel myself looking uncomfortable and in disagreement. Well perhaps I will have my chance tonight, my daughter and I are going to my Dad's for dinner, thanks again! 

You haven't mentioned your daughter's father? Is he in the picture? What are his beliefs?

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