I need some advice as to what I should do. I am open about my atheism with my family and don't really worry about what they think since my dad is agnostic and is fine with my atheism, and I don't really care what the rest of my family thinks since I don't know them as more than acquaintances. My problem is I do not know if I should tell my best friend. I have been friends with her for about seven years. My best friend is a christian with a christian family, she goes to church every Sunday, is in a church group, goes to bible study, and goes on some summer vacations with her church.
We don't really talk about religion and she is not the type it seem to preach, but I'm worried how she will react. I think she will remain as my friend and not dislike me just because I'm an atheist, but I'm not really sure since I have heard a lot of horror stories from other atheist about what happened when they came out as an atheist.
My biggest worry is what her parent will say. They don't seem like super hardcore Christians but I'm worried they won't like their daughter associating with an atheist.
My dad advised that I wait to tell her until she is out of her house and not depending on her parents to tell her so her parents won't have a say as to who she is friends with, but I want to know what you guys say as well.
I would wait until she's moved out if you think her parents could affect your relationship. I would try not to make a big deal out of it and try not to let it affect your friendship. Maybe mention it in passing or if she brings it up. You could also just not tell her. If you and your friend don't actively discuss religion it may be easiest to just let her assume what she wants.
Ivanthecur, your point of view is a familiar one, and I know you have a right to your opinion. However, think long range. Do you want friends with whom you have to wear a mask, be careful about what you say, or deny what you really think?
To be proud of being a non-believer in superstitions and delusions is a mark of critical thinking. It is not something to hide. If you are a thief, you probably want to hide that from others, but being an atheist is an honorable thing, worthy of self-respect.
I respect the fact that you could empathize with her and want to protect her. My hunch, she is strong, caring, compassionate, and able to stand up for what she believes.
I agree with Steph S.