Originally Posted by Tysyacha
(NOTE: This is an open letter that I first wrote to one of my best LF friends.)
I feel like if the people around me knew what I really thought, and how I really felt, then they would judge me negatively, and condemn me (withdraw their friendship/love/etc. from me, because I'm "supposed to be a Christian" and not the way I am right now).
I realize this thread is rather old, but I don't see why the topic should stay dead forever just because no one has discussed it recently.
I just wanted to say that I've gone through something similar to your experience over the last few years, especially the part I quoted. 5 years ago, I was about as "Christian" as they come, or at least I thought I was. Since then, I've spent countless hours going back over things that preachers, youth leaders, parents, and friends have told me about god and the consequences of "leaving" him, analyzing it to death from every direction. Because of these "consequences" I had nailed into my brain over the years, I was honestly too scared to fully admit to myself that I didn't believe any of it anymore until about 2 or 3 months ago.
At this point, I guess I would describe myself as atheist, and I'm now fully comfortable with that, though none of my friends or family know yet. I haven't decided when or how I'm going to tell them (oddly enough, I think it will be my friends who are more upset than my family), but I should hope they would be mature enough to show the level of civility to calmly discuss the matter that the people in this thread have shown.