For quite awhile my family did not know that I was an atheist. I was very careful to cover my tracks, and I hated living the lie. I took extra precautions after hearing stories of accidental family discoveries from fellow atheists. I sanitized my online profiles, I hid my browsing history, hid my writings, I bowed my head during family prayers, and it killed me inside. Every time I had to pretend to pray for a meal when visiting, or attend church, or lie about attending a Christian club, I felt trapped and tortured. So why didn't I just tell my family?
My family (mom especially) is strictly religious. My mom volunteers to help counsel troubled people in her church and is in a Christian book club. My step-father reads the bible cover-to-cover many times over. My younger brother goes on church vacations and activities. My mother already thinks I'm evil, and has called me a "devil-child" and "seed of Satan" and that I have forsaken everything my parents stand for.
I know exactly how she feels. It is a sad balancing act some of us play. I know at some point I will have to tell my family but I am prolonging that. Partially in the hopes I won't be living in the same town as them when I do tell them.
I love my family and I don't want them worrying over something that, from all I can tell, doesn't exist. I know they will worry too. I don't go to quite the depths of deception as EEA did, but I still deceive. During prayers, I don't bow my head or close my eyes. I only go to church when it is my turn to work the sound board, as I told them I would do while I live here (I made the promise when I was a believer). I don't really hide the fact on Facebook, my religion is listed as the Cult of Yivo who was blatantly the Flying Spaghetti Monster. My sister, who has recently embraced young earth creationism and fundamentalism, is one of my friends on Facebook. It honestly really wouldn't be that hard to out me. Maybe this is all just part of the old Christian Dogma I was raised in coming back to make me feel guilty, but I just feel like it will hurt them and I don't want to do that.
Edit: I just want to add that everybody should show EEA some support. She had a lot of people say something but a few more would never hurt. I am sure she would appreciate it.