The Inheritance of Anxiety

By Wendy Thomas Russell | October 1, 2012

Sometimes, in looking through the responses to my Survey for Nonreligious Parents, I’m faced with perfect examples of What Not To Do. Here’s one from a mom: My child just yesterday stormed out of her classroom telling the teacher that she was ‘indoctrinating’ her in the telling of the Christian Easter story. I was very proud my child was so confident, assertive, and sure of her own non-belief that she was able to do this. Confident and assertive? You bet! But sure of her own non-belief? In elementary school? Hell no. Most likely, this child […] Read more – ‘The Inheritance of Anxiety’.
‘We’ll Miss You When We’re in Heaven and You’re Not’

By Wendy Thomas Russell | September 27, 2012

Religious breaks in any family structure can be painful. People who find out beloved relatives have “left the faith” can feel heartbroken, even angry. In a survey earlier this year, I asked nonreligious parents whether they had “come out” to their own families, and, if so, whether they’d received support. About 28 percent of the respondents answered yes and yes: They were open about their beliefs, and most of their family members had been supportive. About 18 percent answered yes and no: They were open about their beliefs, but most relatives had been unsupportive. The highest percentage — 37 […] Read more – ‘‘We’ll Miss You When We’re in Heaven and You’re Not’’.
Do You Share Negative Views about Religion with Your Kids?

By Wendy Thomas Russell | July 30, 2012

Fifty-seven percent of the nonreligious parents I surveyed earlier this year said they viewed religion “negatively, with exceptions,” while another 21 percent said they viewed it “both positively and negatively,” depending on the specific religion. This shouldn’t be all that surprising. Hell, even religious people have issues with religion. I bring it up, though, because I wonder how many parents are (unintentionally or intentionally) passing on these negative views to their children. I honestly don’t know, and because I’m a moron*, I didn’t think to ask that specific question in the survey. It’s very possible that, in […] Read more – ‘Do You Share Negative Views about Religion with Your Kids?’.
Is a Lack of Vomit the Best We Can Offer?

By Wendy Thomas Russell | June 4, 2012

Did I ever  tell you about the time my husband told me hated the word tolerance? I was sure I’d misheard him. I was all, like, what? Huh? You can’t hate the word tolerance! Everybody LOVES the word tolerance. Simon Wiesenthal and the Museum of Tolerance and all that. Remember? Yes, he assured me, he did remember. But he still hated it. See, in my husband’s view, tolerance was a word used to relate something bad, not good. A guy ate a piece of rancid beef but was able to tolerate it; that is, he was […] Read more – ‘Is a Lack of Vomit the Best We Can Offer?’.
O We of Little Faith: Highlights from Nonreligious Survey

By Wendy Thomas Russell | May 21, 2012

My Survey of Nonreligious Parents parents concludes this week, and I want to, once more, thank everyone who was involved in the project. I managed to get close to 1,100 responses, and the results have been fascinating. I’m most grateful for all of those who took the time to explain their answers. I learned so much more when I let you tell me about your experiences in your own words. First, the basics: Most of the respondents (about 75 percent) were women and between the ages of 26 and 45, and most had children under […] Read more – ‘O We of Little Faith: Highlights from Nonreligious Survey’.
Nonreligious Parents: It Only Takes a Few Minutes to Make a Big Difference

By Wendy Thomas Russell | March 1, 2012

I am so grateful to all of you. The results of my Survey for Nonreligious Parents have been pouring in, and the results are absolutely fascinating. All your answers are so thoughtful, heartfelt and inspiring — not to mention quite funny at times. A few examples: In answer to the question, “If you considered yourself religious and no longer do, what describes the reason you made the switch?,” a father checked the box for “Something I read.” Then, in the comment field below, he explained: “The ‘Something I read’ was the Bible.” A mother said […] Read more – ‘Nonreligious Parents: It Only Takes a Few Minutes to Make a Big Difference’.
Help Break New Ground! Participate in Survey of Nonreligious Parents

By Wendy Thomas Russell | January 23, 2012

I don’t want to make too big a deal about this, but DUDE! MY SURVEY FOR NONRELIGIOUS PARENTS IS READY TO GO! I can’t tell you how excited I am to see this survey come to fruition. Some of you may know that Parenting Beyond Belief author Dale McGowan conducted an excellent survey of nonreligious parents a couple of years ago — the first of its kind — and, in a way, my questionnaire begins where his left off. It delves into how we nonreligious parents make it work in our families and communities, how we’ve […] Read more – ‘Help Break New Ground! Participate in Survey of Nonreligious Parents’.
Survey Says!

By Wendy Thomas Russell | November 13, 2011

As part of my book research, I’ll soon be conducting a formal survey of nonreligious/not-very-religion/quasi-religious parents on the subject of religion and kids. That is, people for whom religion is just not a major factor in their life decisions. Please note, this survey is not just for atheists, but for parents who don’t feel a need to raise their children in a certain religion. The survey shouldn’t take too long. Most of it will be multiple choice and focus on four main areas: •  How have your beliefs (or non-beliefs) been influenced by your own […] Read more – ‘Survey Says!’.

Relax, It’s Just God

A Blog for Secular Parents
For parents who aren’t religious, the task of talking to children about religion can be daunting. So daunting, in fact, that the entire subject often gets glossed over or ignored completely. Relax, It’s Just God is a blog (and soon a book) intended to help parents break their silence without breaking a sweat.
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