I realized this while making friends in the chatroom - I've never made friends with another atheist before. I have several nonbelieving friends, including one outspoken atheist, but she and I aren't friends because of atheism. We're friends because of RPGs, and I learned about her worldview well after the fact.
In fact, even while she was discussing being an atheist, in her living room with three dogs, four cats, and our spouses, I didn't tell her I was, too. I couldn't relate to the term 'atheist' at all. I'd been going godless for years, but I couldn't quite be an atheist.
And I think it was because I didn't find atheists approachable. Or even secular humanists. I thought the SH's would be a warmer, gentler bunch. But I joined a SH community once, a few years back, and they were neither warm nor gentle. They filled the list with posts ridiculing religion, and that seemed to be their only mean of communication. Some of their mockery was poor and cringeworthy, probably because each participant felt he/she had to come up with something anti-religious in order to post.
I grew up Catholic, so I'm not saying religion is completely irrelevant to me, but it's been a long time since religion was a significant factor in my life. I'm not an atheist because I hate religion. I didn't give up on the Catholic church because it is bad. I left before I knew it was bad; before pedophile priests and Old Boys behavior became staples of the media.
I'm not here because I was rejecting something. I rejected the God mythos a long time ago, slowly, quietly, without drama or bad feelings. I'm here because I still need a sense of community; interpersonal contact. I need to know I can still make friends.
And not the kind of friends who thrive on dissing other people. I didn't even have that kind of friends among the Catholics. We were a very tolerant, non-hating group of Catholics, when I was younger. We were warm and friendly.
I know that not every Catholic is like that. But in my experience, friendly Catholics are easy to find. It helped if you believed exactly as they did, but it wasn't a requirement.
I just want something now that's not worse.