So, I told my boss that I’m an atheist.

For those of you who don’t know, I am working on a poetry book that is going to be published by Freethought House. It’s about 80 poems and it covers just about everything about my life as an atheist mom in the Midwest USA. It’s called, The Heathen Mommy from Holy Toledo. 

I was so excited about getting the book published that I shared the news with a couple of coworkers who also shared the news. I didn’t tell them what the book was about I didn’t quite consider the consequences either. The organization I work for, while it’s not faith-based, it is still pretty conservative. I don’t even want to know what their reactions are going to be if the actually get a hold of the book and read it. 

So I felt I had to tell someone. My boss is pretty amazing. She’s outgoing and accepting. She’s definitely a shining star at work. I approached her yesterday when we were alone and told her a little more about the book and my fears. She was extremely supportive. I told her I’m not always open about being an atheist because I fear discrimination and she reassured me that my poetry book will not affect my job. She said she will make sure that no one says or does anything to me.

When I think about it, it’s probably unlikely that anyone at work will read my book even though they show interest when they learn the news. A few people have said they want a copy and I’m kind of hoping they forget. They are not my target audience! However, I still felt the need to tell my boss. 

Having my boss in my corner was completely unexpected but I huge relief. I can’t let my guard down a little bit and I’m even more excited about getting the book published. 


  1. kestrel says

    That’s great, it must be a huge relief! Sometimes people can really surprise you for the better. Congrats on the book but even more congrats on having the great luck to have such a good boss, who understands that your purpose at work is to do your job and not to prop up everybody else’s ideas.

  2. robert79 says

    I’m fairly sure “boss training”, whether just some management course somewhere or an MBA includes a bit about “don’t be an ass” and “discourage in-fighting in your workers”, it appears she listened.

    However, I’d say a managers primary job is to make sure the members of her team work well together and *trust* each other. A good manager should take your comments (specifically, the fact that you don’t know how well your co-workers would respond) as *severe* criticism of her work, so I’m curious to see how this will pan out.

  3. Matt G says

    Just don’t tell her about all the baby BBQs happening this weekend. It’s not good for our image.

    This is what needs to happen. Let people see what a wonderful person you are, and then, slowly ease them into the idea that you’re an atheist. I use quotes as my email signature. I started out with innocuous pro-science and philosophy quotes, and have slowly been introducing digs at pseudoscience, and of course, religion and pseudoscience are frequently found together.

  4. Mano Singham says

    Congratulations on the book. I know how hard it is to get one published and the relief when it does appear!

    Having your boss be supportive is a nice bonus.

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