Valerie Tarico

Author · Seattle, Washington

Valerie Tarico is the author of Trusting Doubt: A Former Evangelical Looks at Old Beliefs in a New Light and Deas and Other Imaginings. Raised in a staunch fundamentalist family, Valerie attended Wheaton College, where the Billy Graham Center features a museum about the history of Evangelism in North America. She obtained a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Iowa and completed postdoctoral studies at the University of Washington. She subsequently joined the staff of Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Seattle and ran Children’s Behavior and Learning Clinic in Bellevue, Washington, before moving on to private practice.

For years Valerie practiced “don’t ask, don’t tell” about matters of faith. But as it became clear that the Religious Right was opening a public conversation about Christianity, she decided to join the fray. Her articles are featured at Alternet, TruthOut and TrustingDoubt’s Channel on YouTube offers life tips for recovering fundamentalists and hosts two popular series, “God’s Emotions” and “Christian Belief through the Lens of Cognitive Science.” Only one of her brothers thinks that she is actually channeling Satan.

Valerie is actively engaged in interspiritual dialogue that aims to find common ground in humanity’s shared moral core. She is a founder of, an interactive site that allows users to find and discuss information about virtues that are valued across secular and religious wisdom traditions.

Valerie is interested in speaking on:

  • Recovery from fundamentalism
  • Reproductive rights and technologies and religious interference with both
  • The psychology of belief
  • Religious recruiting of children, and how to defend against it
  • Raising good kids without gods
  • Role of women in society
  • Contraceptives

Essays and podcasts can be found at her blog, Away Point.

Watch the first video in her YouTube series, Christian Belief Through the Lens of Cognitive Science:


Contact Valerie Tarico >>

Topics: Psychology, Religion
Subtopics: Leaving religion, Psychology of religion, Sex & sexuality

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