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My dad died last year. A few months before he died I pretended to have a religious conversion. I did this because I knew that he was worried that god would punish him for not doing a good job on me. The last time I saw him, racked with cancer, I said, "Imagine how you will feel when you can run again" and he replied, "Haven´t you ever heard of purgatory?" What a sad way to die.

markbailey0008 4 Apr 6

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I never told my parents I didn’t believe in god as I didn’t want the confrontation.


Epitaph by Merrit Malloy

When I die
Give what’s left of me away
To children
And old men that wait to die.
And if you need to cry,
Cry for your brother
Walking the street beside you.
And when you need me,
Put your arms
Around anyone
And give them
What you need to give to me.

I want to leave you something,
Something better
Than words
Or sounds.

Look for me
In the people I’ve known
Or loved,
And if you cannot give me away,
At least let me live on your eyes
And not on your mind.

You can love me most
By letting
Hands touch hands,
By letting
Bodies touch bodies,
And by letting go
Of children
That need to be free.

Love doesn’t die,
People do.
So, when all that’s left of me
Is love,
Give me away.


I am sorry for your loss, and yes it is a sad way to die. Now the pain is gone for him.


My condolences for your loss.


Sorry for your loss brother. I go this same route myself when talking to close ones about grief.


I get it. I think what you did is awesome. And perhaps your father's statement is more reflective of his ingrained religious beliefs than any reflection on your relationship.

I agree. If he thought he would be punished for you not have a religion, he most likely punished himself for many other reasons. 😔


Sorry for your loss.

Leelu Level 7 Apr 6, 2021

You did the loving thing and maybe it actually helped to give your father peace of mind, we don't really know what others think or how they feel, not completely. Maybe he was worried that he was going to the hell he was taught to believe in and your 'conversion' got him to purgatory instead, that's an improvement and not a failure.
Playing along with another person's imaginary, magical world is something we all have to deal with as atheists but it is especially difficult. Kudos to you for setting aside logic for a moment to make your dying father feel better. 👍


Take heart bro


sad to you maybe, but he made that choice, after all, so it must have made him happy eh?


There's a story that Kurt Vonnegut told about his grandmother. She was a devout Christian and Kurt was an atheist. On her deathbed he went along with her proclamations of God and an afterlife. When asked why he didn't assert his own godview to her when he had the chance his answer was, "Why? Because I loved her."


I'm sorry for your loss but it was OK to pretend a conversion if it would help him out in any way. I'm sure you loved him and were trying to give him comfort and peace of mind.


My most sincerest of Condolences to you, your family and friends upon your sad loss.
Try to remember and cherish the Good times and discard the bad ones, keep him in your memory always.


Very sad


So tragic that many religions bring people pain and grief rather than any reassurance or joy



Condolences. I see nothing wrong in what you did; you gave a dying man at least a little peace. I have always tried to speak the truth or say nothing, however, if I was in a similar situation, I may have done the same.

i think you are right in what you are saying


You did the right thing for him. Sometimes we do need to tell some white lies.


Sorry for your loss.
Most of us try to do the best we can for the people we love.
You did what you thought was right at the time you did it.


Your father was entitled to his beliefs. I hope he went peacefully. I'm sorry for your loss.


I'm sorry your dad had to die thinking like that. I don't think I'd lie to my parent(s) that way. I find religion to averse to even pretend to believe.

When my dad died I cried for three months, I know your pain. I didn't know it but he was my main support within the family.

I agree with you and I still feel conflicted, especially as his last words to me were, "Go to confession." I guess that´s why I wrote the post.

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