I am a 35 yr. old mother of one and have been married 17 yrs. I was Born an raised in East Tennessee and my father was a Holliness minister. We had to wear long dresses, no jewelry, no makeup. Television and music was not allowed in our home and we could read no books but The Bible and The New Testament. My father died when I was 9 and I started to live a more normal life. When I was about 11 I joined the Mormom church. I had had it (literally) beat into me as a child that I had to believe, I had to follow something. My teenage years were spent in a deep depression because I honestly thought there was something wrong with me because I didnt believe in what I was being told. Yet until I was 18 I went to church faithfully, and joined in all the youth activities etc.
When I met my now husband it was like a weight had been lifted off me, because I finally found someone like me, someone I could talk openly to. I was excomunicated from the Mormon church about 6 month after meeting my husband (they found out we were living together) and I never looked back.
We live in a small town and have had to keep pretty quiet about being atheists out of fear of losing our jobs. Our daughter is 16 and is having a tough time at school, a lot of kids call her a satanist and tell her she is going to hell. Sometimes it feels like we are completely alone and are desperate to find other families to communicate with and share our problems and beliefs. It is hard for atheists who live in rural areas to communicate and meet with other atheists and there needs to be even more web communities etc. for them to meet.