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erin119
Post  Post subject: The beginning of my new journey  |  Posted: Tue Nov 01, 2016 3:46 pm
Nursery

Joined: Tue Nov 01, 2016 2:56 pm
Posts: 13
Location: I have gone to look for myself...

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I first came across this forum about a week ago when I was thinking about putting in a resignation to the Mormon Church. I am officially a part of the forums now (yay!). Today, I made the first steps in being removed from their church and sent out my letter of resignation. I know it sounds silly, but for me I really wanted to make sure it was something I wanted to do. But as I thought about it, I realized that nothing felt more right. I was born and raised in the church, and something always felt wrong about going there. I think I've always not believed in Mormonism, but I was afraid to speak up before because the rest of my family are Mormons, and I didn't want to disappoint them or get lectured or something. However now I am in a place where I am far from family, and I feel it's the right step in the right direction. At the same time, I'm angry and disappointed. I've wasted about 22 years (counting just from the time I was first baptized) with this crap, and those are years I'll never get back. I spent so much time, focus, and energy on something that only hurt me in the end.
When I was in elementary and junior high school, I was bullied by other students. These same students also happened to be the kids in my age group at church. They would do the whole "I believe in God and will do what I have to to love one another and follow his word" crap, and then turn around the following day and bully me. Honestly, I had never met a a bigger bunch of liars in my whole life. I never understood how people, even kids, could live with themselves after standing up in front of their family, friends, fellow church members, and God and flat out lie. My dad's second wife was like this too. When she married him, she promised to love him and us kids during their marriage (she also had kids of her own from a previous marriage). But, after we moved in and she got to know us this quickly changed. I swear she was a female version of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. She tried to ship my brother off to military school, and force me and my sister to leave and live with my birth mother. The thing is, my sister is adopted and she and my birth mother didn't get along (there was a lot of abuse which I won't go into here). All of it was because my siblings and I weren't the kind of Mormon members she thought we should be. She thought we were "hurting" her image she had worked hard to create. This kind of behavior I've found is normal among Mormons. And the thing that angers me the most, is the ones who are the most abusive, hateful and good at lying are the ones who are accepted the most in the Church. Granted, these bad experiences are not why I decided to leave the church, but they have added fuel to the fire. I guess I figured if that was how people treated fellow members, then it wasn't going to change if I left the church either.
Anyway, I think I've said enough on that subject matter. I just wanted to get my story out there in case someone else is dealing with something similar. I wanted to ask, has anyone else gone through something similar to this? Is it normal to still feel slightly afraid, even when you feel very strongly that it's right? Also, I'm expecting to continue to get bothered by missionaries and members of the church since they don't know how to listen to the word "no," so I was wondering, what are some methods in getting the Mormons to leave someone alone after they've left the church and they don't get the whole "I don't want to have contact with you" speech?


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Melanie
Post  Post subject: Re: The beginning of my new journey  |  Posted: Tue Nov 01, 2016 4:01 pm
myself

Joined: Sat Jun 22, 2013 4:34 pm
Posts: 1668
Location: England

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Welcome Erin :greetings-clappingyellow:

It's great you're part of the Forums.

Thanks for sharing some of your journey with us.

Yes, of course, it is entirely normal to feel that apprehension, it is a big change and takes a lot of honesty and strength.

I'd say best thing is to speak clearly that you have resigned and be confident and not give them any hope to think they might sway you back. I didn't do these things and it became excruciating for me and very damaging to my self esteem. I also did find that, later on, when I said I was a member of the Forums and was helping others to leave, that was a very clear message to them. It is important folk know you are resigned and not solely inactive. That is the main thing.

I also like the story I read somewhere about some guy who got frustrated by repeated visits and he turned his hose pipe on a bishop I think it was, when he was approaching his drive yet again! But of course, I don't personally recommend that!

_________________
Why leave? http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... 989OOSOycw
How to heal? http://media.blubrry.com/mormonexpressi ... ion225.mp3


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lilirish
Post  Post subject: Re: The beginning of my new journey  |  Posted: Tue Nov 01, 2016 7:25 pm
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Sunbeam

Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2016 3:59 pm
Posts: 36
Location: Mid-Atlantic USA

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Hi! It's amazing the similarities we see in total strangers. I had an "evil stepmother" too...

Tricks for getting them to leave you alone.... well so far I haven't had too much issue, probably because my leaving was mostly done over 10years ago, and I moved out of state... but there's the interesting ones of answering the door in your underwear.... with a beer in hand... You can challenge them to read to CES Letter and you will come back when they can give straight (non-apologetic) answers and the church comes 100% clean.


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Abinadi
Post  Post subject: Re: The beginning of my new journey  |  Posted: Tue Nov 01, 2016 8:53 pm
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Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2008 12:23 am
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erin119 wrote:
I know it sounds silly, but for me I really wanted to make sure it was something I wanted to do. But as I thought about it, I realized that nothing felt more right.
That's wise. It's a big step. Given the level of trust most Mormons have in the Church, one needs to make sure they have real commitment, strong determination, before telling the Church where to put their only-true-churchism.

erin119 wrote:
At the same time, I'm angry and disappointed. I've wasted about 22 years (counting just from the time I was first baptized) with this crap, and those are years I'll never get back. I spent so much time, focus, and energy on something that only hurt me in the end.
I doubt you'll find an ex-mormon who does not share this sense of anger. I think I handle it by telling myself, everything is a learning experience. I have been cheated, physically attacked, robbed, etc. I can't undo any of that. I can't undo my Mormon years. So best to just accept it as something that happened, and I am a better person now despite those unfortunate happenstances. The sense of wasted time - it still comes to mind from time to time. I get angry from time to time. It's not perfect - I've only partly - mostly - gotten over it. There is this little thing nagging me in the back of my head. But it's past, I can't go back to the beginning, but neither does it have a hold on me any longer. Like a drug addict that breaks the addiction. "Today is the first day of the rest of my life." So I won't dwell on past mistakes, just make sure not to repeat them. :) I am very happy to donate to several real charities now, have given more as an exmormon than I gave the Church as a Mormon. The fact that I wasted a few dollars on them has no effect on my here and now.

erin119 wrote:
I never understood how people, even kids, could live with themselves after standing up in front of their family, friends, fellow church members, and God and flat out lie.
That's rough. Sounds like Utah.
erin119 wrote:
All of it was because my siblings and I weren't the kind of Mormon members she thought we should be. She thought we were "hurting" her image she had worked hard to create. This kind of behavior I've found is normal among Mormons. And the thing that angers me the most, is the ones who are the most abusive, hateful and good at lying are the ones who are accepted the most in the Church. Granted....
Arggh! That - what is the word? - hypocrisy? - arrogance? - is very disturbing. It's hard to deal with. In front of non-Mormons and ex-Mormons that they don't know used to be Mormons, Mormons can seem more humble and open-minded. But we know what goes on behind the scenes so to speak, don't we?

erin119 wrote:
I wanted to ask, has anyone else gone through something similar to this? Is it normal to still feel slightly afraid, even when you feel very strongly that it's right?
Egads! I discovered the Tanners in the 1970s, before the internet, before helpful exmormon support groups. Late at night, I read their books. "Mormonism - Shadow or Reality?" - I read that, late at night. I could only bear one short chapter at a time. There was so much information in that! I could hardly stand it. I would read, my heartbeat increased, my face got hot, I was - what? - angry? scared? shocked? depressed to the pits? All of that. I was so shocked by what I read, I set it aside after only a couple of pages. I was scared - because I "knew" the Church was "true" - so then, how could the Church be true if all this was true, too? And I knew it was all true! Sad, because all the Mormons I knew - they didn't know this. Angry that Joseph Smith and Brigham Young did these things, and that I didn't know about, that no one told me about it, that Smith and Young and current leaders hid it from me.

My uneasiness - that's a better word for what I was feeling, than 'afraid' - lasted - well, a long time, let me tell you. Caught between confidence in the Church's truthfulness and a growing confidence that the Church was Smith's confidence game. :( I was embarrassed to meet with Mormon leaders - bishops and whatnot - for a few years after that. I still felt they were better than me. Because they were Mormons, they believed, they were confident, they did not apostatize as I had, and they looked down on me, so obviously I deserved to be looked down on. I didn't, but I thought I did.

Finally, because I studied Mormonism more out of the Church than I had when I was in the Church - and that was a lot - seminary, missionary meetings, BYU religious courses, etc. - I was able to confront missionaries face-to-face and come out the victor. Their claims fell in the face of facts and reason. That's why they said it's all about faith, you need faith, because really, that's all they have - faithful imaginations - no evidence, no logical argument from beginning to end, and no absence of self-contradiction in almost everything they believe. But it takes some effort to pick those out and explain them in a way that a Mormon can understand.

When i could explain Mormonism better than the missionaries, and how the Book of Mormon refutes Mormonism, and could point out a few historical inaccuracies (lies) in Mormon Church history, I lost any lingering fear. I had no doubts (about Mormonism). It truly is amazing how little I care about the Mormon Church, given how much I did care while a member. I care about people of course. Mormons and ex-Mormons both. But what the Church does politically, what the leaders say publicly, what claims members make at work or school, it's like water off a curelom to me. No effect. Unimportant. Balderdash.


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