Relationships: Atheists and Christians

Sarah Bowman
Sarah Bowman, Writer & Researcher, volunteer at Atheist Secular Humanism

I am happily single and not interested in the dating game. However, I have some really good friends who are Christian. How Christians “wear their religion” is very important to me. I keep my distance from those who wear their religion on their shirt sleeves and let it roll off their tongues. To me, there’s more important things in life than spouting one’s life philosophy every time we meet. In the friendships I value, people enjoy each other’s company, sharing both the joys and frustrations of life, helping each other as best we can to lighten loads and celebrate good times.

That these friendships cross a variety of life philosophies/religions makes no difference to me or them—we’re all just people making the best of the situations in which we find ourselves. I will pray and say grace if that is part of a good friendship but I don’t have time for folk harping on the value of prayer to get them through the tough times or praising God for every good thing that happens to them. To me, that comes across as spouting religion, wearing it on shirt sleeves, and I can’t live with that. It disrespects my right to my own conscience, values, and life philosophy; Christians who do that will have to look elsewhere for friends.

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