My mother's hypocrisy

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My mother's hypocrisy

So, my mom found out I was an atheist. She asked me why, now, I am NOT good at articulating thoughts when put on the spot, and even worse at standing up for myself, it took me forever to express my own opinions because I often hold those contrary to most of the people I know. So when I said I had trouble finding the right words to explain it, she said, "I honestly don't think that you've thought this through" yet when I asked her why she did believe in god, she said "I've seen too many things not to" and when I told her that basically was the same way I had concluded there was not god, she just got kind of prissy and repeated that she didn't think I'd thought it through. I told her that her belief didn't make sense, and she pulled the bullshit "That's why it's called faith" card.

Never mind the fact that she has gone to church practically her entire life and has never, ever questioned god's existence, but her so-called "accepting" attitude of my atheism is so arrogant and patronizing, I'm not even sure it's worth talking about it with her.


Now my father is getting in on the fun, except he doesn't even try to hide under a mask of tolerance, he just goes straight for petty and trivial.

*insert something witty here*

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I finally had to tell my sister we would not discuss religion.  There is no arguing with someone who has invested time and money into a delusion for that many years.  Try visualizing - water running off a duck's back, creeks running over rocks, snow falling on the hillsides.  Or something less damp if you are put off by water visions.  My point is you are the rock, you can and will endure.  If they see you are mature, act in a moral fashion, live a good life, support yourself, and help others when you can -- maybe they will grant you the dignity of being able to find your own path.  But I wouldn't hold my breath, and I wouldn't let them bully me into changing my mind.

And they are not going to even attempt to listen to your point of view - you are the child.  Yeah, I know, when you are 90, you will still be a child to them.  I was in my mid-thirties before my mom finally figured out I had grown up.  Fortunately for all of us at that time, no one in my family was religious except my sister, and since I am the oldest, she was easy to ignore.  So I didn't have to deal with parents who were certain sure I would go to hell.  Now, I ask people why would you want to spend an eternity in a heaven with Tammy Faye Bakker?  Your parents may not be ready for that question. 

Best wishes, hang in there.


-- I feel so much better since I stopped trying to believe.

"We are entitled to our own opinions. We're not entitled to our own facts"- Al Franken

"If death isn't sweet oblivion, I will be severely disappointed" - Ruth M.

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No surrender, no retreat.

No surrender, no retreat. Remember they're the victims of the grandest fraud in two thousand years, and you don't want to waste your life on a dream as they have.
It hurts when those close to you belittle you, but that which doesn't kill you makes you stronger. In a few years you may find the roles reversed. Where they're afraid to bring it up because every time they do you make their beliefs look stupid.
Good luck.

Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.

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The only mistake I think you

The only mistake I think you may be making is assuming that "she has never, ever questioned god's existence". Maybe not admittedly, but I believe that anyone with a lick of sanity has had their own doubts. I would bet that if the next time it came up and you were both to have a heart-to heart, and you asked her, she would say that she has. IF not then you can just throw complete honesty out the window. Of course just admitting one's doubts doesn't change their beliefs, but that's not what you are set out to do (not yet anyway). Even if one doesn't search for truth with reason, these doubts come involuntary. It's natural common sense at work.  Most do not know how to confront these doubts, so they deal with it the way they were trained to. -by falling back on faith and circular reasoning of  scripture like "Satan spreads the seed of doubt" and other non-sense.  

What i'm getting at is when you get someone to present their own arguments to their own doubts out-loud, they sound so silly on their own that you don't have to be too quick with your own rationality. They do your arguing for you.

"...but truth is a point of view, and so it is changeable. And to rule by fettering the mind through fear of punishment in another world is just as base as to use force." -Hypatia

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I've argued with my mother


DMCheese wrote:


I'm not even sure it's worth talking about it with her.



with all the mental dexterity I can muster. At 82 she still believes atheists have no moral compass, that atheists argue life came from rocks, that I secretly love god, that Darwin was a christian, that I am going to hell. She gets her information from the church newsletter so this may not be a surprise.

If your ma is a committed christian you will never convince her. Like cj says, you may just have to let it be. Or you might be happy to argue. The more you argue the better you will get at it. You could suggest you only accept material truth claims on the basis of multiple empirically-proved hypotheses. Without these proofs your position remains open. If she has some empirical proofs, she can offer them to you for consideration. My experience is that they will mostly be appeals to complexity or ignorance. 

Google 'fallacious arguments' and memorise some. You'll find most all literal christian positions are liberally represented therein. 

Welcome to the site, BTW, DM. You'll get plenty of immoral support here, if you want it.  


"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck

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Parents are just really set

Parents are just really set in their ways mentally and it's hard for them to accept anything that doesn't reflect what they grew up with no matter how damning the evidence is against their beliefs.  I remember when I was a kid, me and my mom were really close and she used to be into the 80s big time and after awhile I started drifting away from that music and listening to alternative and grunge eventually telling her that the 80s suck.  I thought she didn't really shift her taste, but then I started noticing that she was listening to less 80s and more Blind Melon, Smashing Pumpkins, Third Eye Blind, etc.  Funny thing is later in life, I went to 80s and started thinking most alternative is dated and lame and my mom still listens to alternative more than 80s.  I guess it more or less depends on the subject matter to conform to and how appealing it is.  With religion, the appeal seems a lot greater than atheism.

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I was sitting in a pub



just then reading New Scientist like the inner city wanker I am and read the observation that imprinted beliefs, when challenged, will be met with cognitive dissonance - that an individual's full intellectual might will be mustered to defend the imprint - no matter how silly. It was very interesting and I thought of this thread. The opinion piece was entitled Crystal Clear on Consciousness.

In less years than many, we will unstitch the structure of the neural workspace of consciousness, according to the assertions of some professor who assuredly knows more than me. 






"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck

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I bet you are having

I bet you are having problems with your parents because they see you as a little girl. You are weaker and you don't know what you really want because of your hormones.

Keep this in mind...

You are a rough 50/50 copy of your parents. There are traits which you hold which your parents have too. They might not admit to it, but I can say for sure as I look at myself and my siblings that we each got "little pieces" of them transferred to us via the wonderful world of DNA.

I'm not saying that one of your parents is gay or has gay tendencies. They might have a sibling, uncle or aunt who had those tendencies and I bet they know which one is like you. They are so caught up in the bullshit lie that giving it up would be conceding 40-50 years of bullshit and that is too difficult for most people to handle. They will hold on to the lie until the pass on.

I see it in my family so I'm going to make an educated guess and say this is the same for all families around the world. My mom and I share the trait of procrastination and disorganization. My father and I share physical strength and quick to be frustrated when inanimate objects don't function as they should (or as we would like them). I see bits and pieces of me in my siblings which I know are from my parents but I don't have as pronounced in my chemistry.

Knowing all this about my parents and siblings actually brings me closer to them than it does push me away. Over the years as I've discovered this traits I have worked to change them. I have been very successful and it took 30 years for me to succeed, so don't get discouraged. It will take you a long time to get most of them under control.

I say this because as you speak to your parents, like you mentioned above, you have already noticed where these "words" or "actions" have come from; you do understand the game they are playing. Remember not to try and convince them of your belief system. It's futile to do so; you would be wasting a lot of time and resources.

Always remember to stand your ground and don't give in to their delusions (don't let them know you see this in them!). You are already free of the lie and you need to grown on this foundation. Use your knowledge of your parents to comfort yourself and every time they make you angry, cast it aside and tell yourself not to fall for that trick.

You'll be fine. There are others out there just like you going through the same problems. You aren't alone.