The other day, I was pondering what gifts I could get my younger siblings as New Year’s presents. My parents are raising the kids (aged 4 and 6) as rational thinkers who look at nature with wonder and at religion with a skeptical eye. In spite of the wishes of our humanist parents, other adults in my siblings’ lives are teaching them about God and Jesus and all that jazz. It’s probably more than a little jarring for them.
My youngest, slightly gender-dysphoric sibling is very impressionable. It was in her head for months that “God makes her special.” The older one can probably understand that just because lots of people try to tell her about God doesn’t mean that he’s real. There isn’t enough convincing evidence to prove his existence, despite the contradictions of others. She seems to trust what her parents tell her, thankfully.
It saddens me to imagine how confused they must be. I wish there was some way I could give them support without being around them all the time. (As it is, I typically see them once a month-ish.)
It struck me that there might be books for godless kids that would be able to help validate them and help them realize it’s okay to be an atheist. There are several books about humanism, evolution, and morality; books to help children of same-sex couples realize that there’s nothing wrong with their parents, despite what they may hear from other adults. Hell, there are even books for young children with incarcerated parents. But, apparently there aren’t any picture books aimed at helping young kids deal with the social stigma of being godless.
Do you think it might have helped you when you were a tot to have a book like this available to you? Would it help your (possibly hypothetical) children? Should I write this book?
The Afternoon Inqueery (or AI) is a question posed to you, the Queereka community. Look for it on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays at 3pm ET.
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