Originally, I had been a strong Xian with faith in the Xian God. I was told to pray to God and repent to my sins, or I was going to spend eternal afterlife in Hell, suffering unimaginable torture. Imagine how that looks to a kid in elementary school. After discovering the wonders of the Internet, I wandered through different forums until I came across one that led me to a friend. He was an atheist, and since I had no knowledge of what that was, I asked my mother and she told me. Fortunately, by this time, my mother was a more New Age person than anything else, but I was still being raised that there was an almighty “God” out there. After having discussions with this friend, I realized that perhaps there wasn’t a God [gods, etc.]. The idea had never occured to me previously. Several meaningful discussions later, I realized that my friend was right, and that Xian beliefs were so nonsensical, I couldn’t believe I had listened to their faux preachings in the first place.
I was just glad that my early Xian upraising hadn’t completely closed my mind.
Glad to hear you had an open mind — and I hope it has stayed open, even after you became an atheist. I was also raised religious, but my parents encouraged me to think for myself and, for me, that was the road to atheism.