How to deal with a religious family

hello everyone I don’t feel comfortable writing this and I don’t wanna make too long, I was born a muslim in an arabic country and after a lot of researching and reasoning and mental break downs I finally feel like I’m sticking to the side of atheism. but my family are all very religious muslims and they will kill me if they found out about what I’m doing or thinking. I still pray 5 times a day, fast in ramadan and do the religious acts. I don’t wanna do them but I’m frightened of the consequences if I stopped. what should I do?


I’m not sure how old you are, whether your male or female - but this answers your question. Your physical safety is first. Your survival. Time will pass and circumstances will eventually change.


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thank you very much for your answer. I’m a male teenager and of course circumstances will eventually change that’s why I asked the question, to see if there are other people who were or are like me and if things get better for them.

thanks again.

Welcome to Atheist Republic khid.

Although I live in Canada, I am very aware that a person in your situation can be at risk. Above everything else, your safety is the prime priority.

And I suggest that when you make any decisions on this topic, the first question you must always ask yourself is “will this decision have any impact on my safety in any way, potential or real?”

Take care, be safe.

A human develops as they grow, they go through different stages as they mature. For example, as young children they are eager to please. A few years later when puberty raises it’s head they become more independent and willing to take risks.

I recall when I was your age I thought I knew everything, was capable of not making mistakes, and everything had to be done NOW.

Please understand from one who went through that phase, I did not know everything, I made a lot of mistakes, and I did not have to get everything done now.

You do not need to rush. Take your time on important decisions, even if they may take years to decide. You have a full life ahead of you, a potential of living many decades in peace and happiness.

Take your time, allow life to come to you, do not rush quickly into anything you have not carefully considered.

It is reputed that in many of the ismalic countries that as many as 40% or so of the population are muslim in name and practice only.
Which probably explains why so many can integrate perfectly into a more liberal society without much friction.

I do not know where you are, but, as a young man, keep your head down, outwardly conform. It will get better. Keep your views to yourself, be careful, trust no one.

If you frequent these forums where you are most welcome, make sure you use a vpn and download nothing. scrub your files after every session.

I wish to offer my personal story on this issue. Although I come from a very moderate nation and my parents practice a moderate religion, once I realized I was an atheist I had to make a very important question.

Do I let my parents know I am an atheist?

If I did not, I would not be 100% honest.

But if I did, they would suffer emotionally, and possibly disown me.

I placed the needs of my parents above my own, and decided I would rather be dishonest than cause my parents any pain.

I sacrificed my integrity for the peace of mind and happiness of my parents.

These days both of my parents are gone, and as I look back, I know I made the correct decision.

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I fully agree.

Trust no one, be safe.

thanks for your answer, my family don’t know the first thing about computer and they definitely don’t understand english so I guess I’m ok. and I don’t hate them I love them I just wanted to see if there were other people like me, thanks to everyone who replied.

wow this is exactly what I wanted to hear, I didn’t mean when I said they would kill me, I meant exactly what you said that would destroy them emotionally and they would look at me as a disappointment that’s what meant. sorry for not being clear this is my first time here and I’m not a native english speaker

Do not concern yourself. Many in this forum can be brutal and nasty against idiots or dishonest people. But those same people will be the ones to go to great effort to assist you, and are incredibly tolerant.

For those who have need, we are here. But for those who just want to be jerks, we stand in line to take turns kicking their teeth in.

This forum does many things. It is where we exchange ideas, argue, praise, insult, and learn.

But this forum is also a refuge for people in difficult situations. We are here to help you in this time in your life.

what do you mean idiots and dishonest people do you mean new atheist or theists. that doesn’t make sense if they want to assist you why would they brutal to you.

He means convinced hardline theists of all types, the occasional hardline atheist, anyone (including them) who has not clearly thought out their rationale yet try and force their half baked notions down our throats.

My apologies, I did not convey the correct message.

In a forum like this, we frequently encounter some people (usually theists) who act like jerks or are just dishonest or offensive. For many of the regular atheist forum members, those people are treated harshly and with disdain. After reading some threads you will discover that quite easily.

But those same atheist members who can be brutal and harsh on jerks, they become gentle, compassionate, and tolerant when they encounter someone like you in a tough situation.

Many atheists in here were raised theists, and for them, parting ways from religion was a painful and difficult process. They truly understand the pain and confusion that can be part of divorcing one from religion.

They have lived it, they know the pain and confusion, they are compassionate and they care.

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Hello khld, I’m very sorry for your situation. When your safety is a concern, you must continue with that as your 1st priority.
While I could never completely understand what you are going through, I was raised in a Christian family, and while coming out publicly as an Atheist involved some argument & tears, my physical safety was not at risk.
If it were, I would continue doing as you are.
I am relatively new to this group, but there are a lot of nice people here who you can speak to & your privacy will be kept.


Welcome, you are among people who will try to help you if you let us:

I can’t imagine how afraid you must be of possible consequences. Now and always, your safety comes first.

Can’t imagine how it could possibly be safe for you as a muslim apostate in a Muslim country.

May I ask your age? I only ask to have an idea about how much longer you need to keep the pretense. If still at school and depending on your parents, it may be for some years yet.

If you don’t want a life time of pretense, you may need to consider eventually moving , perhaps to another (non Muslim country)

Right now, the most practical and safest thing I can think of is to continue as you are for now.

Take care of yourself.

Exactly what you are doing until you are safe. Don’t risk your safety. You are now witnessing the reality of religion and religious thinking. As you move forward you will see more and more hypocracy. There is not a damn thing you can do about any of it until you are safe. SAFETY FIRST.

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Hi @khld , welcome to AR.

I know it’s UK based, but this link is the UK council of ex Muslims.

I think it might help to hear and share the views of others going through the same thing.

As others have said, put your own safety first, and consider carefully before revealing to anyone that you no longer believe. Good luck, and welcome to AR.

thank you david. I wanna say it was really comforting talking to you and all the people who replied to this post, thank you all for your advice.


My rule of thumb is: never reveal you are an atheist, to a theist who has authority over you.


Great rule of thumb. I’d like to ad a corollary; Because we can’t tell who might have power over us in the future, perhaps better not to mention it all unless very certain of one’s interlocutor.

Truly can’t remember the last time anyone asked me. Just doesn’t come up here.

Well ,there was that incident at a party about 10 years ago. An earnest young man with a gaze asked me “Have you heard the news?” To which I replied " I don’t know, but if the answer is Jesus, I’m going to punch you in the face." He slithered away with alacrity, not realising I was bluffing. (I last hit another human being in anger in 1964)

But to be fair, I despise proselytizers for their hubris, their insensitivity and their ignorance :face_with_symbols_over_mouth:

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