How does your extended family take your belief or lack thereof? Or do you even tell them?
For context, I came from a lightly spiritual but very open minded household. My dad believed in guardian angels but was a pretty scientifically minded guy, and my mom is artistic, open minded, perhaps even agnostic at most. The rest of my family are aware of my skepticism but, for the most part let me be, since I never kept that close of contact with them. Heck my grandmother isn't even that devout but does pray for me, which I take as a kind gesture since I don't see her often and we discussed in great detail my beliefs and, she was pretty accepting.
What about you guys?
I went from being born-again to non-theist. I'm vocal about it, so I'm sure many of them (I come from a big family) just roll their eyes. I have two staunch born-again sisters who occasionally react to my FaceBook posts, but they're both a good sport.
Maybe it's immature, but I do like irritating anyone who is staunchly religious and has a 2x4 up their ass. My ace-in-the-hole is that I was once there, and can out-quote them from the bible.
I grew up Catholic, and my younger brother and parents became agnostic as I opened up about my reasoning to them. My mom outed me to my aunt who didn't react much at the moment, but we've never broached the subject since then. My Grandmother has an idea, and though she's religious, she's doesn't really care. But I daren't "come out" to the rest of my extended family who are much more religious, and I know there would be no end to the fighting. I have some disagreements with my mother who insists that putting my in Catholic school was the best choice because it "gave [me] morals". If she only understood the amount of dread and fear I dealt with as a child as a direct result of Catholic teaching.
I was told I was going to hell and my child would too, if I don't recognize lil baby Jesus as my lord and savior. By an extended family member. Other than that, we just don't talk about it so that we can avoid the shitstorm argument that would ensue.
I grew up as Muslim...
They know I am not into religion. But I never told them, neither they asked me. But often they say something like, "God will ask you. What will you tell him?"
I don't live with them anymore. We even don't have contact anymore.
I have a shit family :/
a 74 year old male. I was in a very strict catholic home ,I've been through several religions as an adult from fundamental christian to the occult belief,now I question everything and everybody,I worship no gods/goddesses, angels, demons etc.most of family are still strong catholics,they know I'm not a believer but they know better than to question a 74 year old heretical rebel. I do not push my beliefs or lack there off, and i do not push my beliefs on them.
The only ones outside of my home who know are my parents. We all deconverted around the same time. Mom still prays to a god of her own understanding. It bothers her that I do not, but she leaves it be for the most part (takes an OCCASIONAL cheap shot). My in-laws and the rest of the family have no idea. I see no need to upset them with my disbelief. My 17 and 20 YO kids know right where I stand, better than anyone else does. I think they are agnostic for the time being. We each sort of walk our own spiritual (or non) path.
My parents are dead. My sister is somewhat of a religious believer, but feels that I have a right to my own beliefs. My second wife of 23 years is a devout Catholic and we both respect each other's right to believe or not believe as we see fit. My two daughters vary between atheism and agnosticism. Religion is not a part of my 3 grandchildren's lives.
I was "raised in the church", non denominational but southern and fundamental nonetheless. My mother prays for me constantly, for my eternal soul. I love my mom but find her narcicism over my soul to be somewhat annoying. I don't push my atheistic views when I'm around my family. I'll even do the whole hand holding Grace around the table thing. I just wish my personal beliefs weren't a tragedy for my mother. However, as someone famous once said, "to thine own self be true."
They don't. At least my immediate family anyway. My siblings are atheist but not as open and vocal as I am, my father is agnostic, he is scientific and logically minded but still believes in an afterlife or at least would like there to be one, and my mother believes in an afterlife but to what extent I am not sure, she doesn't talk about it, but she has agreed with me and my siblings when the topic of religion comes up. Most of my extended family are very religious for the most part with a few of those hypocritically fanatical ones in there but we mostly avoid them when we can even though they are not as annoying as you'd think if you keep the conversation off politics or faith. All of my grandparents have passed but they were aware of my lack of belief very early on when I wouldn't want to participate in anything church related as well as refusing baptism; our dynamic shifted a little after that with my mother's parents and more attention was paid to the other grandchildren including my siblings. They still loved me and let me know it but they never really treated me like the rest. My father's parents never talked about it, they were more political and working class than my mother's more posh devout Christian side, but they were still believers in the same god. My aunt and uncles on my father's side are not really the sort to question anyone's belief's but I have one uncle who is one of the fanatical ones I mentioned earlier.
My birth family (best name I could come up with for my original family!) are not particularly religious and are used to me taking the path less travelled, so in general they are OK with my lack of belief. My actual family, of ex-wife and two wonderful kids, are very religious, so it is more difficult with them, but I hope as my kids become teenagers and then adults they realize that I was always talking the truth and looking out for them more than Mr. Invisible.
I have never actually "come out" to my family about the subject. My sons are the only family I have in this state and they share my views but, the rest of my family, it's not something I care to share with them. I'm fortunate enough to still have both of my parents even though they are in their 80's. I see no reason to stress them with this topic. When I do see them for a holiday meal, I go through the motions when they say a prayer before the meal. I have no desire to influence anyone else's belief system. I came to my conclusion on my own.
And, the biggest reason that I don't discuss it with them is my older sister. She's two years older than me. She was a horrible drug addict and alcoholic ten years ago. She was completely homeless for three years. The only place I could ever locate her during that period was when she was arrested for something. Her becoming a Christian was literally life-saving for her. I can't even begin to think about taking that away. And she is not the right-leaning evangelical type. Her political views are very left-oriented. So, I have no arguments with her on a political stance.
I'm glad that I still have her in my life. Jesus didn't save her but, her belief that he did... that saved her. And, I'll let her keep that.