• Lilith Starr

Coming Out as a Satanist: Part Two

Updated: Jan 21


Hada Pixie

This is the second installment in a series in which Satanists share their stories of "coming out" about their religious identification. See Part One, Part Three, and Part Four.


For a number of people who responded to the interview questions, there was no clear demarcation where they decided "I will announce my Satanism"; rather, people around them slowly came to realize that they had become Satanists. Some were already known to be "alternative" in some way, punk or pagan or goth, so it wasn't so much of a shock. But some Satanists were inspired by a specific incident, like the documentary Hail Satan? coming out or the arrival of their membership card and certificate, and decided to explicitly announce their affiliation.


While not everyone experienced negative reactions, some did, especially from parents. One Satanist's mom took away all her journals, art and music. It can be devastating to those family members who are very religious and who refuse to make the effort to understand what Satanism actually is. But some religious parents were surprisingly willing to be educated.

No one mentioned being fired for their Satanism. For most people, it wasn't something that was discussed in the workplace. Others spoke of the anti-discrimination rules in place as potential protection. And for others, their Satanism was actually integral to their livelihood, like the artist who crafts Satanic jewelry.


People's tips on coming out varied. Many reminded readers to not take others' negative reactions personally and to recognize that there will always be a few folks who just won't understand. No one suggested that coming out is the right choice for everyone ─ there are many in situations or geographical areas where announcing one's Satanism could have disastrous consequences (losing custody, housing, jobs, experiencing violence, etc.). But most of the interviewees who did choose to come out felt more empowered to be themselves.



Hada Pixie


1. When did you come out as a Satanist?

2013 I think.


2. How did you come out as a Satanist? Was it intentional, or were you outed involuntarily?

I started a shop selling Satanic rosaries! I've always been very open about who I am but I fought having the label Satanist put on me. Since I'm goth and pagan, everyone assumes Satanist as well, but eventually my path came to a point where I had to accept that label not only as something people will attribute to me, but also is something I can actually get behind.


3. Who have you come out to or been outed to ─ who in your life knows you're a Satanist?

Anyone who matters in my life knows.


4. What prompted you to come out? The development of TST took the writings by LaVey that I stood behind and had already incorporated into my spiritual path and created a platform that I support and want to work with.


5. Do you use a pseudonym for your Satanic activities? If so, why? Do you use separate social media accounts for your Satanic activities?

My pseudonym is for everything I do; it is who I am both on and offline.


6. Did coming out affect your relationship with your family, your partner and/or your children, and if so how?

It acts as a filter to keep people who are going to judge me without asking questions at bay. I didn't notice people acting different, but I tend to assume some people took a step back out of fear. Some people asked me what was up with it.


7. Did coming out affect your relationship with your work colleagues, and if so how?

My work is already alternative so if it has affected it either positively or negatively, I can't really put a finger on it.


8. What serious repercussions (losing your job, losing child custody, being cut off by family members, threats of violence, etc.) did you face (or might face) as a result of coming out as a Satanist?

I feel like being a Satanist doesn't put me in anymore risk than being openly goth or openly pagan. I have always had a strong focus on being true to myself no matter the consequences. If someone treats me poorly because I'm different it says nothing about me, but speaks volumes on them.


9. What positive changes did you experience in your life after coming out?

I've been watching the Satanic community grow. My shop though still small is doing better than I ever would have imagined. And I feel like the people I have in my life are more accepting than the general populace.


10. What advice might you give someone who wants to come out? Do you have any tips on dealing with misunderstanding and discrimination?

When people are rude or come at you from a place of prejudice, don't take it personally. They are projecting their fear onto you. I generally laugh it off, especially if my gentle prods for education aren't accepted. Be yourself and have fun with life.



Steven Hoffman


1. When did you come out as a Satanist?

June 2019.


2. How did you come out as a Satanist? Was it intentional, or were you outed involuntarily?

Casually started mentioning it to friends I trusted. Now I'll point it out when people bring up Christianity and ask my opinion on it.


3. Who have you come out to or been outed to ─ who in your life knows you're a Satanist?

My former workplace knew, and my new workplace hasn't asked yet. I won't be hiding it, but I'm not going to go out of my way to discuss religion in the workplace. My friends on Facebook mostly know; my religious brother and sister don't know though they are on Facebook ─ the topic hasn't come up or hasn't been noticed by them yet.


4. What prompted you to come out?

I came out nearly immediately when I decided I didn't believe in God anymore. I had always respected TST's work but didn't feel right calling myself a Satanic Christian, so I was merely a supporter of their works before that.


5. Do you use a pseudonym for your Satanic activities? If so, why? Do you use separate social media accounts for your Satanic activities?

Nope.


6. Did coming out affect your relationship with your family, your partner and/or your children, and if so how?

My wife thinks I joined a cult, she's mostly joking, but only mostly.


7. Did coming out affect your relationship with your work colleagues, and if so how?

Not really, a few welcomed the change and shared kind words, the rest just asked if that meant I could now work Sunday mornings.


8. What serious repercussions (losing your job, losing child custody, being cut off by family members, threats of violence, etc.) did you face (or might face) as a result of coming out as a Satanist?

There's always the risk of someone acting from a place of fear, but for now I haven't faced that. My work places have strong anti-discrimination rules in place that I haven't needed to use yet.


9. What positive changes did you experience in your life after coming out?

I just felt less hypocritical. It's one thing to support a view from the safety of your home, it's another to face the potential of criticism from holding that view publicly, or even low-key publicly as in my case.


10. What advice might you give someone who wants to come out? Do you have any tips on dealing with misunderstanding and discrimination?

Only you can decide if you're in a safe place to do so. As a 500lb white male, I'm not overly concerned about my physical safety, but that isn't the case for everyone. Come out to those closest to you and have a support network in place before making any grand and sweeping declarations to the world. Always understand that just as it took you time to realize the truth, it takes others time too, be patient with those who think you're evil for turning from their God.



Adam


1. When did you come out as a Satanist?

Fairly recently. Just a little over two weeks ago.


2. How did you come out as a Satanist? Was it intentional, or were you outed involuntarily?

Well I can say it was very much intentional. I have been a member of TST for years. While I was unable to attend the meetings and events with chapters nearest to me I still felt like I was a part of something special. When the documentary was released it inspired me and gave me the confidence as a Satanist to realize that a difference can be made and those who don't agree with what I believe don't matter. For the bigger picture is far more important than what others would think of me. I decided to order my card and certificate from the TST website. It was the day I received it in the mail that I made a public post on my social media accounts about my excitement on receiving the certificate. It was a very interesting few days that followed, to say the least.


3. Who have you come out to or been outed to ─ who in your life knows you're a Satanist?

After posting everything publicly on my social media, everyone now knows that I am a Satanist.


4. What prompted you to come out?

Finally feeling empowered for who I truly am and for wanting to be a part of something I can get behind. Something that can make a difference for everyone and not the select.


5. Do you use a pseudonym for your Satanic activities? If so, why? Do you use separate social media accounts for your Satanic activities?

I use all of my personal accounts. At this point I have nothing to hide and I am proud of who I am and who I strive to be.


6. Did coming out affect your relationship with your family, your partner and/or your children, and if so how?

To be completely honest I was nervous to post because of my parents more than anything. Although they're not church going people, they do believe in God. They have never made it an agenda or forced the idea of God on us growing up. They made it our choice ─ however with the stereotype of the term "Satanist" I was afraid they would jump to conclusions. I was surprised that after talking everything over with them they were very accepting of my decisions. They also expressed a few views they had always thought was unfair about the laws of the church and so on. It was a very positive experience for me with them. My wife knew I was a Satanist long before I went public and always said people should believe in whatever they want. My Facebook, however, was not a great turn out. Many jumped to the stereotype and took me off of their Facebooks and other social media. That is fine. I would prefer to not have close minded people in my life like that anyways so in the end, it all works out.


7. Did coming out affect your relationship with your work colleagues, and if so how?

I would have to say no. Work is work for me and personal life is separate. If I ever were approached by a co-worker about it, I would say just that and allow them the option to talk about it in a non-work environment if they did have questions.


8. What serious repercussions (losing your job, losing child custody, being cut off by family members, threats of violence, etc.) did you face (or might face) as a result of coming out as a Satanist?

I can say that nothing super negative has happened yet, but I am starting a group in my area so we will see how things transpire as things develop.


9. What positive changes did you experience in your life after coming out?

I can say just the fact that I accept who I am and can now empower what I truly believe is the most gratifying part. People come and go but being you who are is what's most important. Those who love you will accept you.


10. What advice might you give someone who wants to come out? Do you have any tips on dealing with misunderstanding and discrimination?

No matter the outcome be true to you and no one else.This world forces people to hide behind society as a pawn to serve and obey. Life was never meant to be this way nor should it. Always respect yourself and what you believe. That should never be taken away from you nor should you feel any less for it. The ones that stay matter and the ones that don't were never meant to. Perspective is everything. Just be you.



Cassie Robinson


1. When did you come out as a Satanist?

December 2017.


2. How did you come out as a Satanist? Was it intentional, or were you outed involuntarily?

Not really ─ I was (and still am) a bit more low-key about it. I take the "it's what I am, but it ain't who I am" approach to things like this. That and I really couldn't care any less of what people think of me. Take me as I am.


3. Who have you come out to or been outed to ─ who in your life knows you're a Satanist?

My S.O, a couple of close friends and a few of my followers on social media.


4. What prompted you to come out?

My own personal choice.


5. Do you use a pseudonym for your Satanic activities? If so, why? Do you use separate social media accounts for your Satanic activities?

Definitely not. I take a 'what you see is what you get' approach to my life, and if anyone doesn't like that, they are free to leave me be myself in peace. Should anyone challenge that . . .THAT's when we're gonna have some problems.


6. Did coming out affect your relationship with your family, your partner and/or your children, and if so how?

No, it didn't. Fortunately, most of my family aren't religious and those that are respect the beliefs/values of others. Also, for the most part, I've told my friends what it's all about and funnily enough, they agree with a lot of the values that Satanism holds.


7. Did coming out affect your relationship with your work colleagues, and if so how?

If it affected them in a negative light, I'd call them out on that level of hypocrisy. Granted they all preach an "all-inclusive environment" and what-not.


8. What serious repercussions (losing your job, losing child custody, being cut off by family members, threats of violence, etc.) did you face (or might face) as a result of coming out as a Satanist?

None whatsoever. That ain't no bullshit either. However, I have had some horrific things happen to me (to which I won't go into detail here) for other reasons. But that didn't happen because of my religious beliefs.


9. What positive changes did you experience in your life after coming out?

I haven't really noticed a lot; granted, my life is generally positive to begin with.


10. What advice might you give someone who wants to come out? Do you have any tips on dealing with misunderstanding and discrimination?

Be yourself. You don't have to make it known to all and sundry ... and by crikey, don't force people to accept you when they don't. The reality is, not everyone will accept you (much less tolerate you). That's a fact of life. Deal with it. If someone is (or you think that someone is) discriminating against you, go look up the New Zealand Human Rights Act. Familiarize yourself with it, and also (if you can) go to the Citizens' Advice Bureau. You'll accomplish a lot more there, rather than being an idiotic protestor.



Ava Noir


1. When did you come out as a Satanist?

At age 15, but it's still ongoing.


2. How did you come out as a Satanist? Was it intentional, or were you outed involuntarily?

My family found out by accident. My sister saw an exacto knife in the back niche of an art book I was making my freshman year. Wrongly assuming I was cutting myself, she told my mom where to find the knife while we were out of the house. The art book also contained satanic symbols as well as Anton LaVey's Satanic Sins, Rules of the Earth, and other passages from the Satanic Bible.


Anyone who becomes Facebook friends with me will eventually stumble upon a Satanic post or could see my religion on my 'about me' section. And as for others, I don't openly tell people, but if they see the sigil of Baphomet tattoo on my back, or if I wear any Satanic jewelry or clothing, then that tends to out me.


3. Who have you come out to or been outed to ─ who in your life knows you're a Satanist?

Family, friends, random people who see my tattoo ... just not my current coworkers.


4. What prompted you to come out?

I never wanted to remain in the broom closet.


5. Do you use a pseudonym for your Satanic activities? If so, why? Do you use separate social media accounts for your Satanic activities?

Yes, for protection while meeting with people I don't know. I have one profile. My old high school friends, distant family, and former coworkers all get to see my Satanic posts. Some have chosen to part ways after those posts. Auf wiedersehen.


6. Did coming out affect your relationship with your family, your partner and/or your children, and if so how?

Oh yes. My parents were devastated, and my mother still tries preaching to me, 13 years later. We haven't had the same relationship since I converted.


7. Did coming out affect your relationship with your work colleagues, and if so how?

Well, I know at my last job, my tattoo got exposed plenty while changing into my work shirt. I also happened to mention loving all the little "praise Satan"s and such in the new Sabrina series. Soon after, I found out there were rumours going around about me regarding Satanism. No one seemed to treat me any differently though.


8. What serious repercussions (losing your job, losing child custody, being cut off by family members, threats of violence, etc.) did you face (or might face) as a result of coming out as a Satanist?

Well, back when I was 15 and my sister inadvertently outed me, my mom went through my whole room and took away all of my journals, music, and books. She threw away some of my clothing, posters and art on my wall, and forced me to go to a church camp that summer. She eventually gave my books, journals, and music back (later that summer, except my Marilyn Manson cd that I got back at age 20 when she found it again). I am still missing a journal or two unfortunately.


9. What positive changes did you experience in your life after coming out?

A sense of honesty in my being. I've also gained many friends who have similar beliefs.


10. What advice might you give someone who wants to come out? Do you have any tips on dealing with misunderstanding and discrimination?

If people don't like you for who you are, they don't deserve to be in your life. Period.



Angie


1. When did you come out as a Satanist?

Winter of 2016.


2. How did you come out as a Satanist? Was it intentional, or were you outed involuntarily?

It was intentional. After I received my card, I showed coworkers and friends. I framed and hung my certificate up. I am a Satanist on my Facebook profile and Instagram. And not only do I have a Baphomet decal on my motorcycle, I also have one on my jeep. I am proud to be a part of this movement!


3. Who have you come out to or been outed to ─ who in your life knows you're a Satanist?

I think nearly everyone who knows me knows I am a member of TST. I'm an old punk rocker who played bass in various punk bands until I retired 4 years ago. Nothing I do is shocking anymore.


4. What prompted you to come out?

Why not? I'm proud of TST! And people don't scare me. If anyone takes issue with me, they can confront me!


5. Do you use a pseudonym for your Satanic activities? If so, why? Do you use separate social media accounts for your Satanic activities?

No.


6. Did coming out affect your relationship with your family, your partner and/or your children, and if so how?

No, my adult daughter recently became a member after I took her to see Hail Satan. My husband, who is not a Satanist, thinks it's fun that he is married to a Satanist. I've tried to explain it to my mother in law, but she just says she loves me no matter what I believe. But I just want her to know that it's not what it appears, because I really respect her.


7. Did coming out affect your relationship with your work colleagues, and if so how?

Not negatively. My GM makes references to hailing Satan before we work a busy shift. If anything, it's empowered me with my work relationships. Because in my social circle I hang out with punk and metal musicians, no one really cares.


8. What serious repercussions (losing your job, losing child custody, being cut off by family members, threats of violence, etc.) did you face (or might face) as a result of coming out as a Satanist?

None!


9. What positive changes did you experience in your life after coming out?

I feel like I belong to an intellectual group. It's nice! I gives me peace that there are people with similar core values fighting the Christian system.


10. What advice might you give someone who wants to come out? Do you have any tips on dealing with misunderstanding and discrimination?

Take no shit. Do no harm.


[Thanks to Jason Lloyd for the editing assistance!]



< See Part 1

See Part 3 >

See Part 4 >


Lilith Starr is a Satanic writer and the author of "The Happy Satanist: Finding Self-Empowerment." She served as Chapter Head of the Satanic Temple - Seattle Chapter for four years.

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