Saturday, November 3, 2012

Do You Know Why I Started Blogging?

It has alot to do with Facebook. I got onto Facebook about three and a half years ago and I found it impossible to post my real beliefs about religion, politics, and atheism. I got so much negative feedback there and, yet, I felt the need to be honest about my beliefs.
But debate? I despise it.

Few debaters know the etiquette of debate. 
No. Instead they just get on and try to rip a disagreeing FRIEND a new one. On the whole, 
I find people (OK, those "friends" on FB) intolerant and openly judgmental.

And I do not debate. If you have a differing opinion or point of view, 
I generally reply "Oh, ok." But that's not enough! NO NO NO. My Facebook "FRIENDS" were putting me in positions where I had to explain what they would never be capable of even considering. I had no desire to engage with these people. My friend list has changed but a few of these folks still attempt to engage me. I don't go there. In fact, I can't do it.

Initially, in February of 2010, blogged for peace of mind. Because I knew I had to express myself fully and honestly and without fear of disapproving eyes. Not disagreeing, disapproving.

As time went on, I realized that I actually did have a larger mission for my blog. To confront the ridiculous stereotypes of Atheist and Homeschoolers. In other words, I felt the need to join the few, brave voices out here who have the courage to stand proudly in our homeschool and atheist lifestyle. The fervency and volume of uneducated, following, unthinking people is like freaking cacophonous overload! I needed a quiet and peaceful place to BE and I'm not afraid to make one for myself!

And now, these days, nearing three years later, I have started to feel the need to blog about secular parenting. Celebrating the liberating secularity, encouraging those blazing new trails, and exploring the little niches of our lives. It matters to me and I hope my small blog means something to someone out there..

Being an atheist parent is, in some ways, like blazing a new trail.
The Christian parenting books are piled high, while secular parenting websites and reading materials are still in their infancy. Happily, the road is widening and getting easier to find. More and more, secular parenting groups and entities are out there en mass. And far less of their content is about thumbing our noses at believers and far more about Secular Parenting. I, in my blogging, tend to look for small moments of parenting to stand for the overall process. Looking at this wonderful journey is essential for my being!

Atheist and secular families have the exact same struggles as every other family in the world, with an addition of several others. One, we have absolutely no pretty stories to feed our children or with which to comfort ourselves in our distress. Instead, we have truth and questions and natural explanations. Very often, we are first gen freethinkers and have nothing from our past to build on.
No wonder we often feel so alone and unsupported.

Secondly, we deal with having our families and our small children being treated with derision, hatefulness, and that awful "Good Christian" intolerance and anger. I mean, how often have you had to explain cruel "hell" comments to your children... without passing along a similar intolerance to them? Who, among us, hasn't had to face our sweet children after someone dared tell them that they are "of the devil" or "going to hell"? I don't know how long this particular battle will be so culturally sanctioned, but I know some wonderful Christian families who openly and courageously fight this intolerance!

Thirdly, the many, many ways our children grow and learn with ever-expanding creativity and investigation because they don't have to do battle with religious dogma first! And, finally, fourth, atheist and freethinking parents are blazing trails in ethics that make me proud to join them! I have never been comfortable in any false black/white dichotomy. The world is an astonishingly complex and fruitful world that requires the ability to appreciate all of those lovely smoky oyster shades of grey. Yes, we are free and inspired to view the known and unknown facets of the world with awe and unabashed wonder.

I don't have much of a need to thrash and gnash around in frustration and anger around in how atheists are treated, though I feel it deeply. But I find that others express this far better than I could. Instead, I'm here to celebrate being an atheist and to, hopefully, inspire my readers to let their own lights shine!

And so, today, I blog in celebration!


If you enjoyed this post you may also like:
Reasons Why You Should Not Homeschool


  1. Raising a happy moral home has nothing to do with which religion you do or don't choose. Success in your journey! :) Danica

  2. In my case, it does. Ethical living is like a life imperative to me.

    Nice to "see" you Danica!

  3. I couldn't agree more. My daughter was told her "friend" would like her more if she was Christian, and another told her that she couldn't figure out why she wasn't Christian, she was so nice. Religion doesn't have ownership of good values and generous hearts.

    1. Audrey, I have to admit, I LOVE it when someone says something to me like "'re not a Christian? But you are so NICE!"

      I love love LOVE to respond: Yes, I am. It seems your assumptions must be incorrect, eh?

    2. I can not count the number of times people assumed I was Christian because I am nice.

  4. I love this post! Thanks for sharing, and more power to you!!! I hope to have your courage soon. For various reasons, I am just coming out of the atheist closet, so to speak, myself.

  5. Hi Karen, thank you for all of your nice comments! I understand what you mean here. I never could understand anger and intolerance simply, most especially when it is directed at children. I'm sorry your family has had such bad experiences. I'm Catholic, but growing up in NYC I've always been surrounded by lots of people of all different beliefs, so I have this unrealistic expectation for everyone to play nice and be respectful of each other. Angry people are scary no matter what they believe. I prefer hanging with people who have a sense of humor. :-)

    Peace and Laughter!

    1. I prefer hanging with people who have a sense of humor too! And YOU are welcome here!

  6. Karen, your blog is making a difference. And I completely understand your reasons for getting into blogging!

    1. Suzanne, you are so inspiring to me! Thank you!


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