Seemingly All Alone and On My Own (or A Heartfelt Lament)

I am surrounded by family, but feel like I'm all alone anyway. With the exception of my dad and myself, none of the rest of my family votes. They are not politically active at all. They support no causes, they do not stand up for their rights. I have put a link on my Facebook page with petitions for supporting the repeal of both DADT and DOMA and supporting the American Traveler Dignity Act, with messages on both that say "Please sign the petition and stand up for yourself and everyone else!" It has been at least a week and although I see everybody signing in daily, nobody has even 'liked' my posts, much less responded by signing the petitions. Even though quite a few of them bitch bitterly about the state of affairs (they don't like the TSA procedures either), they won't lift a finger to change any of it. I don't understand why they don't care.

With the exception of my dad and myself, all of my family believes in God. Everybody else commonly says stupid shit like, "I am thankful that God has seen fit to provide me the means to take care of my family." OR "I am grateful that my guardian angel is looking after me." It seems that the two most heinous dangers to society - politics and religion - mean nothing to them whilst those issues mean a lot to me. If it wasn't for my dad and websites like these, I'd be beside myself. However, my dad doesn't live in the same state as I do, and I don't exactly grab a cup of coffee with anyone from Think Atheist or the YouTube atheist community.

So I am wondering... are there others in the same boat as I am? What do you do about it? How do you go about feeling less alone? How do you make real life connections with like-minded people? Or, do you just continue to keep those relationships superficial and online? (sigh) Thanks in advance for any advice.

Views: 69

Comment by Kirk Holden on December 4, 2010 at 1:09pm
Why do you care what other people think? If your friends are dog people and you are a cat person YOU need to find new friends because there is nothing wrong with dogs.
Comment by Jon Heim on December 4, 2010 at 1:31pm
you cant find new family kirk..

I know what you mean, my family is the same way, at least you have you're father to talk to though, neither of my parents will even give me the slightest amount of respect for my views.
Comment by Joli on December 4, 2010 at 4:03pm
I can totally feel where you are coming from. Everyone I have to talk to (in person) I have to be very careful what I say as to not completely offend them (my bff is agnostic, and the hubbs is satanist, everyone else I know is christian). It can really suck sometimes. I encourage you to look and see if there is an atheist community in your area. I would do the same, but with 4 kids, a husband, work, college, and working out, I have NO time for anything else that requires me to go anywhere lol.
Good luck on your journey of life :)
Comment by Garrison on December 4, 2010 at 4:39pm
@Jon Heim - Thank you for noticing that I did not mention my friends AT ALL in my post. Doesn't it just suck to know that YOU are the one who has thought things out, yet you have to feel this way because others haven't?

@ Joli - I hear you. I'm a single mom of two and going to college myself, whilst still looking for another job, so it's not like I have opportunities to go gallivanting around town to different meetings or what-not. And there are some places where children wouldn't exactly have fun going. Thanks for your comments, both here and there.
Comment by M on December 4, 2010 at 7:47pm
What are your friends like? You are obviously feeling alienated by/from your family (except your dad), but what about friends? I have to say, I love my atheist and faithful friends alike. I would gladly go out to coffee with the lot of them.

If you are truly longing for a like-minded individual, though, I think you might be surprised whom you can befriend quite by accident. I live in a small, rural area, and I cannot tell you how many atheists I have found through work, school, and people I've known forever. Just a thought.
Comment by Garrison on December 4, 2010 at 7:53pm
@ M - my friends are pretty cool. However, because I moved a few years ago and my friends didn't, they are in a different state than I am. Most of my family live here in Georgia (but not my dad), so maybe the move has something to do with it too. I wish I had the experience of running into atheists left and right around here but it seems to be the exact opposite. In fact, one day, at the car repair shop, I had a Mormon proselytizing to me the whole time I was waiting for my car - and I couldn't tell her to can it because she was the receptionist and wife of the mechanic! A couple of encounters like that have me scared to talk to folks around here now. Honestly, I'm scared to tell people that I'm an atheist now for fear of the reprisal I will get as a result.
Comment by Jessica Arcega on December 4, 2010 at 10:53pm
it was in high school that everyone knew that i was an atheist. and it was then that i felt so alone. my friends were told by their parents to avoid me because they don't want their child be influence by me. some left and a few remain. high school was so cruel! i was bullied by my schoolmates and even my teachers (especially my christian living and values education teacher).they used me as an example of "a soul that will suffer eternally in the fires of hell." what helped me survive was my 2 remaining friends (one is a devout catholic and the other is also catholic but is questioning the idea of Jesus being a god... so on) and my teacher in biology. they respect what i believe in and they don't judge me because of it.

College was different though, a feel less lonely since i found friends that likes me for me and not because of my faith or the lack of faith i have. some of the people i met in college share the same view in religion as i am.

now, the feeling i felt in high school is back. but i know im stronger now and that i can handle whatever they say against me beside i still have my friends from high school to back me up.
Comment by Ken Sorce on December 5, 2010 at 6:35am
When I was in my early twenties,I remember experiencing that feeling where you're all alone. I just couldn't figure out why everything seemed so futile. Those were the 1970's though, and the awakening period was in full swing so I attribute much of those feelings to that era. I don't know how old you are but I do believe age may have a lot to do with the way you are feeling. Give yourself time to experience life and yes,by all means be yourself. It's funny how we often feel alienated by thinking that since other peoples views are so different from ours, they must be right and we must be wrong. They are no better than you are though. Talk about a religiously fragmented family, get this. My ex-wife is an associate pastor at a church. Our 20 year old daughter leans toward christianity although she seems to be moving away from it. Our 23 year old son told me in the past year that he doesn't believe any of it so I would say he's either agnostic or an atheist. And I am an atheist. Just remember there will always be differences between family members,friends,etc. It's tolerance that is the glue that keeps it all from collapsing. If we let our differences alienate us, we would be in a much sadder state than we are. Be happy. You are you and that's good.
Comment by Garrison on December 5, 2010 at 7:25am
@ TFH (Deb) - Thank you for your kind words.

@ Jessica - I was nowhere near being atheist in high school. High school is tough enough without adding religious persecution on too. I feel for you.

@ Tyler - There is no way in hell somebody is moving in with me! Most of my family have kids, and so do I - so I think my apartment would become way too crowded and we'd all go nuts and end up on the news or something.

@ Flower - When you come up with said plan, please share it with me so that I can be prepared next time too. It was perfectly awful. I was told all about how the gays were the reason that the economy is so bad because God has turned his back on us and stopped blessing America for our acceptance of them, blah blah blah blah blah. (shivers) Oh yeah, it sucked big time that day.
Comment by Garrison on December 5, 2010 at 7:27am
@ Kevin - I'm in my mid thirties, so it's not a coming of age type quest. I just can't figure out what the hell is the matter with most people and am especially appalled that my own family doesn't seem to have any semblance of rationality about life.


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