Subject:

How my husband approached me

Date:

Aug 13 2006

Author:

The wife of Mr. Apostate


First, I'd like to thank Tal for his wife's story. [just below] In some ways it is similar to my own.

Over a year ago my husband started to do research just out of curiosity of church history. He kept quiet for months and then started to make comments, especially in sacrament meetings. For example, a child gets up to bear his testimony saying the usual, "I know this church is true", and my DH leans over and whispers "Yeah and he also knows that Santa Claus is true too!" The comments in church really bugged me because I had no idea where they were coming from. I don't recommend that approach.


Over time he would read me excerpts from books such as the Journal of Discourses, or make comments. Mostly I didn't want to hear it and I would tell him so. But I guess he couldn't help himself because we talk about everything with each other. I remember asking him one day if he still believed in the BOM and JS. I was shocked when he just smiled at me.
Finally he asked if I would just read Grant Palmer's book and then he would leave me alone. I took him up on the offer because I felt I could trust Palmer. After all, he was still a church member and he looked the part of the elder Mormon man that I was taught to put on a pedestal. So I read and we talked about what I read.

It is now 8 months later and I have read Quinn, B H Roberts, Mormon Enigma, In Sacred Loneliness, Mormon America, One Nation Under Gods, plus Dialog and Sunstone. I am currently reading Fawn Brodie's book.

For me, the approach my husband took was just non-threatening enough to make me look. I am still having a hard time. I miss certain things and feel unsure about the future. It is especially hard because we live in the heart of Mormonland. My neighbors, people I work with, my family members are all Mormon. My social structure consists of mostly Mormons and their constant talk about their religion. Things I used to love to talk about now make me angry. I spend a lot of time biting my tongue and changing the subject.

Although it is a tough journey to take, I am glad we are taking it together.

 

Subject:

Wife would love to hear on the board from Mrs. Tal Bachman

Date:

Aug 12 19:49

Author:

Mr. Apostate


My wife is going through some trials with her growing disbelief in the church. We both basically had every high calling ever offered in the church and NEVER turned down any calling. We were like many of the 101% the dwell on this board. Try being this way in Utah!

It seems that Tal and his wife were the same way. She asked me if Tal's wife had ever posted and I told her I did not think so.

She would love to read what she went through as she came to a realization that the church was bogus and not what it claimed. How long did it take her to get over the pain that she had been duped and how is she doing today.

 

Subject:

About my wife

Date:

Aug 13 04:35

Author:

Tal Bachman


My wife never goes on to the computer, and doesn't know how to type. I bought her the Mavis Beacon typing software program at her request - the only problem was that, as I said, she never goes on to the computer, so the program's still there, waiting to be used. I offer to type for her, but she says that makes her feel embarrassed. I don't know - I guess I don't quite understand girls yet.

Anyway, I can give you a quick run-down without going into detail which she might not want made public for the entire globe to read.

Once I kind of snapped out of the thing, like the whole crazy puzzle all snapped together, I spilled the whole thing to her. To put it in perspective, she grew up in a very poor, dysfunctional, abusive, alcoholic home in a slum in northern England; she joined the church at 14 with her mother and sister, but the church really was a kind of surrogate family. It was her whole life, incalculably more meaningful than to some one raised middle class with lots of life opportunities. She had no opportunities; she went to crappy schools, her dad was in jail, they were broke, her and her siblings going to bed crying because of the hunger (while her mother was using their last coins to GIVE TO THE CHURCH, so Monson could keep stuffing his lifetime-tenured, executive salaried, voluminous gut)...the church was all life, meaning, hope, the source of her self-worth and identity.

When I first saw her (while she was visiting Utah in April 1990), I thought she was beautiful, but the main attraction was that we both were the most flaming Mormons we'd ever met. Long story short is, she went back to England, we wrote, I flew there and met up with her in July of that year, and that first day I proposed, she accepted, we got married in the Logan temple despite the misgivings of normal humans (this just made it all seem more romantic and righteous). By the way, the misgivings were that she was nineteen and I was twenty two, I'd never had a real job, both of us were broke and lacking important life skills, etc. But none of that mattered to us, because we knew that if we were devout, the Lord would take care of us.

Seven children later, in Nov. 2003, after finding that final smoking gun (reading Stanley Kimball's stupid Ensign article on the Kinderhook plates, and Wm. Clayton's diary entries on it) and having it all finally snap after a two year long secret ordeal during which I'd researched and re-researched every thing I could, I tell her in a quaking voice that I think the church isn't what it claims. I almost couldn't see straight in those first few moments. My vision literally blurred. It was terrifying. All I wanted to do was to "unknow" what I now could never unknow.

She was fairly quiet for the first few days. She did ask a few times, "Are you sure?". I kept saying, "All I can say is, I've gone over everything a hundred times, and I can't imagine any other conclusion...".

I'd been the Gospel Doctrine teacher for the previous two years and she knew I was like an Ezra Benson wanna-be, so I think I had credibility with her. It wasn't like I'd been a jackmo or secretly yearning to hit the tables or start drinking or anything. I think she thought I might be on to something, in other words, because of how we'd always been.

As you can imagine, I spent those first few days in a state of shock, bursting into tears all the time, something that literally I had never done. I'd never been emotional ever; now I couldn't control myself. Tracy still kept fairly quiet, as though she was thinking hard about everything, and was as composed as one could hope for.

Well, silly me, because of this, I thought we were going to be able to just get through this without any disruption to us as spouses. And after speaking to my stake president shortly after I figured it out, I really did start to feel a kind of peace about things. I even started to feel a bit optimistic in between the weeping...

I'm sorry, I'm a little vague on the chronology of everything. Even at the time, it's really weird, but I couldn't seem to keep track of time. During those first weeks, probably the first six or eight, I literally couldn't tell if something had happened three days or a month earlier. It seemed like everything blurred. One example of this weird mental state is that I never have been able to remember, even shortly after it happened, the conversation that Tracy and I first had once it all snapped together. I remember calling her into the computer room where I was sitting, and then I remember her sitting on the little sofa, though the image in my mind seems all blurry, but after that, for the life of me I can't remember anything else. All I know is what Tracy can kind of remember...

Anyway, I do remember that a few days after that conversation (whatever it was), she came to me and said, "With something this big, I can't just take your word for it. I'd like to do my own research". So I said, "Yeah, absolutely, I can show you everything, I want you to tell me if you find I missed something...we can talk about everything. I don't know what mistake I might have made, but if I did I want to find out...".

So the first thing she picked up was "Mormon Enigma". After reading it for two days, she said, "I never had any idea that Joseph engaged in this kind of behaviour. This isn't the way anyone who really cared about God or righteousness would act".

Around this time, she visited our stake president, as I had a week or two before (this is the guy who told me that he knew that some of Joseph's stories weren't true, and also said that GBH had come close to saying as much in a private meeting he'd had with him in the 80's). I drove her down to Victoria for the meeting, and after, when we got back out to the car, she said, "I said to him, 'I keep finding out that the stories that the church tells about Joseph aren't true. Like, all the witnesses to the translation process say that he dictated the whole book while he was staring at a rock in his hat, but that's different than what's in all the church magazines and lesson manuals.'"

She said that the SP just said, "Well, we don't really know how Joseph Smith did some of this stuff. Maybe it was...magic".

She said that really shocked her. She kept saying, "'Magic'? He's a grown man talking about 'magic'? What is this? What are we even involved in?"

Well, the emotional slide started to accelerate; she grew more and more distraught as the reality of what this would mean sunk in. All those whose admiration she appreciated most in the world would now think she was either stupid, or that I'd somehow pressured her (it was the opposite - I kept asking her to try to tell me where I might be wrong), or had turned evil, and they would never let her explain herself. Rituals she had grown accustomed to - gone. That pride of marching into church followed by all the little children all dressed up - gone. Seeing the kids all dressed in white for baptism - gone. All she could see was loss.

But it was more profound than that. From the time she had first begun to mature, she had only ever conceived of herself as a Mormon. She had fallen in love with a Mormon. Or...had she really even fallen in love? Maybe she was wrong about THAT, too...because if we were wrong about THIS, what ELSE were we wrong about? She began wondering what we were doing together, whether she was supposed to have fallen a completely different path in life, "I don't even think I'm cut out to be a mother now that I think about it", all kinds of things. (This, from the world's greatest supermom!).

About a month prior to all this happening, I had signed her up as a present for a community class on archaeology and anthropology. The classes now took on far more weight than they ever had before. They discussed various cultures and peoples around the globe, with particular emphasis on tribal myths, religion, worldviews, etc. I think it was the first time she had been able to step out of herself, so to speak, and really think in a detached way about who she was, who everyone was, and how all humans sought to make sense of themselves and the world. This, plus the additional information she was picking up about the young and inventive Joseph, plus reading through the nearly insane arguments of Mormon apologists, rapidly made it more and more difficult to believe anything other than that whatever else it was, Mormonism was not what it claimed to be.

The only problem was, if Mormonism was not what it claimed to be, then SHE wasn't who she claimed to be, and WE weren't who we claimed to be...and maybe reality itself wasn't she thought it was...she had been wrong about the most important thing in her life...AND, the man she trusted most in life - me - had MISLED her. I had been wrong about the church. I had once been certain we were right. Now it turned out we'd been wrong. What did that say about me? Why should she trust me about anything ever again? And all the verbal bullying I'd done whenever she had raised some concern about church life over the past 14 years ("how can I do this calling?" "well...let's see...how about a little something called 'faith'?", etc.) now came back to her. I went from being the upstanding priesthood holder, leader of the family, GD teacher and branch counselor, to being a complete idiot, in her mind (believe me, I had the same impression). This was a big deal, because we'd always kind of been the golden couple, always thought we were soulmates. The story of how we met is like something out of Hans Christian Andersen...but now, everything was up for questioning.

(By the way, this all started happening November/December of 2003.)

Okay - what has happened since is this. After hitting bottom (I'll skip those details), what ended up happening, throughout all last year, was that she started to kind of surface at increasing intervals, for increasing lengths of time. It was like, complete meltdown and then total depression...but then more and more she would kind of come out of it, and begin to express optimism. Each time I'd think, "maybe she's finally coming out of this funk", but then she'd kind of relapse, talking about how terrible it will be when all our relatives shun us (not that this has really happened, at least not to the extent she thought), "What will we teach our children? What if they all turn into drug addicts now?", "What's the point of us even living?", etc. (Note: When I finally figured it out, that terrible crushing blow I felt at least was mitigated by a sense of closure, a sense of having cracked the most incomprehensible code on earth - but I hadn't mentioned anything to her for the two years I was wading through everything again, so when I did, it hit her like a tidal wave. It was the first she'd ever heard about it. I at least felt a burden had been lifted from me, but the whole thing blindsided her).

A few times, in moments of terrible upset, she even critized me for having gotten her "out of the Matrix". That's kind of a hard thing to respond to...I just kept saying, "I just don't know how I could have not told you...I barely knew what was happening myself...how do you keep something like that secret?". She also said a number of times she felt like she was trying to kick a drug.

More and more, though, she began to gain some sense of herself without reference to the church. More and more she began to feel a kind of peace about it all. She doesn't feel anger at the church, and even thinks that some structure, even cult structure, was probably better for her at fourteen, living in the violent, chaotic circumstances she did.

She has tried to remain friendly with her former church friends, but that has been a tad complicated. Many of have been pleasant enough, but still, they don't want to hear her speak about her experiences in any detail, though they feel free to speak about all their beliefs to her (many of which, unbeknownst to them, the church is already backing away from), to bear their testimonies, to "admonish" her. It is difficult to be around people convinced you're making a mistake, who keep telling you in subtle ways you are, and yet when you try to discuss the thing openly and in any detail, they don't really want to hear it. That said, there have been a few branch members who have been very loving toward her still.

The happy ending is that towards fall of 2004, Tracy seemed at last to hit the surface for good. She says she feels more peace and love than ever, and seems far more affectionate toward me and the kids than ever, far more accepting of herself, certainly. She is way less stressed and uptight, a calmer mother, more patient and easy going, and now regularly expresses her gratitude for everything that's happened.

We are moving in two weeks to a new city, and she is really excited to put some of the bad memories behind her, make new friends, and start a new life. She's never really liked her first name, so she's even thinking of just going by Sandra from now on, her middle name. I've never seen her so excited.

Send me your phone number bro, and maybe I can get her to call your wife to chat. She really went through the ringer and came out better than ever, so maybe she can help your wife. This is hard for the ladies, for sure.

Best of luck,

T.

 

 

Subject:

Tal JUST provided a road map as to how "coming out" to ones spouse should be done

Date:

Aug 13 11:11

Author:

Noggin


Tal and others:

Time to comment. I have read and re read this post. The first part of it had a clanging bell effect in my head. I am kind of perplexed. I mean, I celebrate that both Tal and his wife are free by all means but of course, I have to look at how my wife and I reacted when I found I was not going to "be" mormon anymore in the ways that she signed up for.

Tal brought the news to Tracy, his wife, and this is what happened:

"She was fairly quiet for the first few days. She did ask a few times, "Are you sure?". I kept saying, "All I can say is, I've gone over everything a hundred times, and I can't imagine any other conclusion..."

Noggin brings the news to his wife and Nuclear fallout happens. Scorched earth. Humbly admitting that I can be over eager to have things seen as I see them, I admit that I exhibited much frustration when my wife hedged. Whereas Tal and his wife provide great contrast to my experience in that they just kind of went on a journey together... because... geez isn't that what married people who have fostered love between them do? Or isn't that what is supposed to happen? Isn't that what two rationally thinking minds do when they are "One". ?

Every marriage has its own dynamics. I feel badly for basically failing my wife in my approach in coming out to her. I wish I had done it differently. I wish I had been able to read this post of Tal's and had days to ponder it before I came out to my wife. I need to, like, take a sensitivity class.

The dialogue between Tal and his wife is how things should progress, ideally I believe. OPEN, HONEST, even keeled discussion. My experience with my wife was basically one sided and closed minded on both our parts... so herky jerky. I am beginning to wonder if that is not a reflection on the depth and breadth of my marriage. These are great things to ponder because if I need to change something about my personality I definately should do it. No doubt. One of the great things about this board is it jolts me into deep introspections quite often. I hardly drive around in my vehicle anymore with the radio... too busy thinking these days.

Then, the next part in Tal's post displays his wife's ability to rationally process logic and use a reasonable head to look at the facts:

"Anyway, I do remember that a few days after that conversation (whatever it was), she came to me and said, "With something this big, I can't just take your word for it. I'd like to do my own research".

This displays Tracy's trust in Tal that Tal is not some evil and jaded soul who is hell bent in finding an excuse for weaseling out of the tithed 10% of their income and his second job for jesus. Some times that is how I feel my wife views me. A weaseler. I resent it. Anyways. Now, that is rather extreme, and I did say "some times" but, if she did not view me in some sort of skew, whatever it could be, would she NOT look at the evidences "with something this big?" Why would she ignore what I have found?

why? argh.

Perhaps I am under the illusion that my marriage is great. There is the flaw between us re religion sure. I think I am probably not under an illusion. But there is the nagging in my head that won't go away lately. Don't we all want to be hooked up with someone for life that will "go where you go, sleep where you sleep, eat what you eat, breathe what you breathe"? Isn't that part of the romanticism of marriage? At least, a the minimalistic levels, be given decent and fair considerations by our spouse as to what life changing, collosial information regarding mormonism has been found? My wife will not even give me the time of day and is severely offended by me saying the slightest thing. I feel rejection by it and it is driving a wedge between us. As I am wont to do, I take the blame for the wedge much of the time because perhaps my approach suffers but... perhaps the marriage is off kilter in other ways too for her to not even want to consider the path I am taking. Just a thought.

Which of course... leads me, guides me, and walks beside me back to the starting point. If this is not rectified between us somehow, then where is this marriage going to end up years down the road?

.pause.

In conclusion, I think that largely, the way that the still believing spouse reacts to what the apostate spouse brings to the marital table is very much a function of how strong the marriage is regarding the lines of trust, mutual respect and communication.

Thanks for a great post. I hope other lurking teetering "apostates" who wonder if they should come out to their spouses or not can see the point I am making.

If you are going to come out to your spouse, Tal has provided you an ideal scenario as to how it should and can be done.

Noggin
(Mike)

 

Subject:

Exactly!! The Prevailing Theme Should Be . . .

Date:

Aug 13 15:17

Author:

SL Cabbie


"Honest! We genuinely wanted the church to be true and to continue to believe. It simply became impossible to do so and stay within the bounds of reason and sanity."

I hope the lurkers are reading this thread, and that collective thumping sound to the south of here comes from a whole group of apologists whose hearts suddenly rose up in their throats and left them speechless.

Some of those I admire most on this board are people like Tal, Steve, and Socrates who've managed to carry the message of the church's failure without using their own extreme--and understandable--feelings of betrayal and anger as clubs in the power plays of marriage. I suspect their success was in part serendipitous and against the odds. So many relationships have foundered on this rock strewn passage . . . I've often had a difficult time socializing with many young exmormons here because it seemed like divorce and separation were epidemic, and while I wished them all well, my own capacity for support in such situations is limited, and their needs are great . . . too often I felt overwhelmed for purely human rather than judgemental reasons . . .

I hope this message will resonate loudly and those wiser than I and with the judgement born of experience will continue to present this issue with the appropriate depth and sensitivity.

 

Subject:

Time perception and emotional upheaval

Date:

Aug 14 01:01

Author:

SheWhoHasNoName


Tal...thanks for that.

I don't really think it is all that surprising that you have a bit of trouble with chronology from the period of time when you and your wife were trying to sort your religious beliefs out. It has been my experience that time perception tends to get horribly skewed during periods of emotional upheaval, which you were clearly experiencing at the time.

 

Subject:

Re: About my wife

Date:

Aug 14 03:42

Author:

Edgewood-Dirk


Thanks for sharing. This story and the others here demonstrate just how profound an impact of "lying for the lord" can have.

Fanny Al, Noggin, Tal and Tracy. I could feel your pain reading your stories. I remember how much anger I felt toward the church for the emotional castastrophe it was sowing in peoples lives.

However your stories resound with hope. Even after the foundation of your lives crumbled underneath you, you made it through the dark times and are on the path to a happier enlightened life.

 

Subject:

Re: About my wife

Date:

Aug 14 04:38

Author:

Bonnie



Your story was so well written I read it over twice. thanks for sharing! It means a lot to me to read stories of how others handled things.

I never knew there were so many people who actually were TBM, studied, opened their eyes, and then left. I tend to think that most people who leave are not that into the religion.

I wonder if most folks on this board were really TBM's or more lukewarm like me.

Again, THANKS for sharing your story. I appreciate your openness.

 

 

Subject:

Re: Wife would love to hear on the board from Mrs. Tal Bachman

Date:

Aug 13 10:21

Author:

Found Myself


Tal, I just wanted to thank you, and everybody here for that matter, who take the time to post their amazing stories and lay bare your most painful, honest, raw and joyful life experiences. I feel like I have learned more from this post about the reality of post-mormon life than anything else I have read. Very honest and real..just amazing. More valuable probably than any therapy could be. Really. Thanks again for taking the time to post, it is tremendously appreciated.

 

Subject:

therapy

Date:

Aug 14 04:42

Author:

Bonnie


I agree that reading the stories of others is much appreciated and very helpful.

Group therapy! thanks to everybody who posts their stories. I read almost all of them, and they always help me to understand how mbrainwashed i was.

 

Subject:

Tal, thanks for your words.....

Date:

Aug 13 11:14

Author:

nomogo


I feel that I, (and many of us)have had similar experiences -- I'm a year or two(ish) behind you. I will share this post with my wife when the time is right. I know I was going through this change for a couple of years -- I was backing out slowly. When I finally told my wife that I felt TSCC was not what we thought it was, I realize it must have "blindsided" her also. It is difficult to ease someone, (who isn't doing the research -- ironically I was trying to prove TSCC was true to myself), through: it is/it isn't true sort of thing. She still attends and is still a semi-believer, and I'm trying not to push too hard.

 

Subject:

One important addendum

Date:

Aug 13 12:41

Author:

Tal Bachman


One important thing I forgot to mention.

We found, through our doctor, a really great counselor, an English guy in his early fifties who strangely enough, identified himself as a Christian. This is not the snake handler type, but a mild Church of England type.

It was really great for Tracy to be able to speak to a guy regularly who knew virtually nothing about Mormonism. He was able to help her clarify her feelings, reconstruct some sense of self, and gave her faith that in fact she hadn't just entered into some new wacko bubble, but was starting to see things more clearly than ever. Tracy asked me to come in a few times too, which I did. He was a very nice, smart, sympathetic guy who helped her a lot, and I'm really grateful to him.

For guys out there whose wives start to go off the rails, I recommend gently suggesting this (do NOT set it up with a Mormon!).

T.

 

Subject:

Re: One important addendum

Date:

Aug 13 13:47

Author:

PtLoma


Agree. Your wife was VERY lucky to have such an understanding and sympathetic doctor.

I think the problem with many unhappy LDS members is that they're trained NOT to reveal or discuss any weaknesses or unhappinesses openly, particularly not with a nonmember. In my community, there are no LDS family practice, internal medicine, or Ob-Gyn doctors.

The LDS medical professionals tend to be podiatrists, dermatologists, or ER docs (all of which allow regular hours for church service...). The Stake President of Newport Beach is an Ob-Gyn...his practice must be a regular Prozac factory, since I would not be surprised if LDS women go 30 miles to see him (I know some who do).

Therefore, if you lived here, the only choice for Tracy would be a Gentile physician, and many LDS would be afraid to share anything with such an outsider. I agree that a sympathetic nonmember doctor is probably a depressed LDS member's best hope (versus LDS Social Services or an LDS physician). Think how much worse it must be inside the Corridor, where the majority of practitioners must be LDS.

 

Subject:

This is how I approached my TBM husband

Date:

Aug 13 14:32

Author:

FannyAl


If I could give advice to any closet doubters or those who haven't told their spouse: Try not to shock them with "the church isn't true." Try and take the journey together even if that means backpedaling and pretending. Go to your spouse with that first thing that made you concerned. Cry with them. There are going to be tough times even when you take the journey together but it will save your marriage. When that Mormon bubble has been burst, it can be overwhelming. I felt despair at times. My whole dream of my eternal marriage and family was destroyed. My relationship with God and Jesus was ruined. Once you begin to break free from the church's tentacles, there is a whole world out there. There are wonderful people out there who are really happy that aren't Mormon. Who would have thought! Now I am focusing on loving and serving my brothers and sisters-not because the church has assigned one to me or forced me through blood oaths to serve. I am not looking at the world through my Mormon eyes anymore and it's been a humbling experience. I have a whole new love for mankind that I didn't have before.

Here is how I approached my husband who is as TBM as they come. (I am talking Stake President or General Authority material) I went to him sobbing after reading about Joseph Smith's extra curricular activities on the internet. It started with "leaving the Saints" being released on Oprah's Book Club. That's where I first even heard about him having sexual relations with other women and it prompted me to do some research. As soon as I did that first Google search, I was shaking and sick. This man that I had praised and respected my whole life, was a con man. He lied and cheated on Emma to many times to count. He lied to the church, changed revelations, and broke vows to his wife. I don't trust him. His character does matter to my salvation and belief in the religion he started. Then the Book of Abraham was a shocker. My whole world came crashing down. At this point, I hadn't come to any conclusions that the church was false or anything about the Book of Mormon. I went to my husband and said "the church has deceived me. I can't be a member of a dishonest church. I am so angry." I felt so angry at the leadership for painting a false picture of church history. I couldn't stop crying for weeks. I couldn't get Joseph's affairs out of my mind. I felt so much pain for Emma. The so called Saints that also betrayed her by sneaking off and marrying Joseph behind her back made me sick. How can Todd Compton call them Saints. I was very disturbed to find out Joseph Smith was a treasure hunter and used a peep stone to translate. Why wasn't I taught this? What bothered me was that the church white washed everything! If they had just taught the history correctly then I may not be here today. I would have been brain washed with the full truth instead of flicks of history. Back to my story- My husband tried to comfort me and he warned me about the anti material that is out there. After this he began reading everything I would read so that he could find the apologetic explanation. After months and months of reading my feelings were only more strong that the church had lied and changed just to increase members. The depression and sickness has faded and I am doing much better. Now my husband is starting to research for himself now. He is reading BH Roberts, Quinn, Mysteries of Godliness, and has read all the polygamy books as well. He has even been on this website and FAIR. It is really scary going on this journey. Each morning I woke up so ill to my stomach and I am now finally at a place where I can function and carry on with life. Telling my husband I could no longer pay my tithing really was tough. I can't support a dishonest organization no matter what good they do in the world. He continues to serve faithfully and hasn't stopped believing, but I believe our marriage will be fine. He can only do what feels right to him and he understands that I can only do what feels right to me. In some ways our relationship is stronger because of this, but it has been very stressful for both of us.

Going through this is very much like dealing with a cheating spouse and getting a divorce. It's hard to break free. You can only learn the truth when you are ready. Just like a spouse can only learn their partner has been unfaithful if they are willing to listen to the truth. The feeling I had initially was the exact way it felt when my ex boyfriend had betrayed me only this was a lot more painful. I am still recovering and don't know how long it will take for me to find a spiritual peace. The challenges I face now are how to raise my children. I can't imagine raising them out of the church without the "get married in the temple" goal every Mormon parent dreams of , or for my son "go on a mission." It is scary not having this structured life anymore. This is my current struggle. I used to always say "if I am not Mormon then I would have to become agnostic." It's a scary thought for me right now. I never thought I would be here actually facing that possibility. I just look at all religions as false after being a Mormon. I hope I can find some kind of truth out there in Christ. I don't want to give up on Jesus.

 

Subject:

To FannyAl

Date:

Aug 13 15:27

Author:

Tal Bachman


Fanny

What you said really resonated with me. It's funny you mentioned the nausea - I felt like vomiting for weeks. It just wouldn't go away. One of the reasons I was so freaked was because I had no idea if it ever would go away (it does).

My cousin, at some point in those first few days after I snapped to, who was still TBM, said to me, "Well, how do you feel now?". I said I felt awful, and he said, "Well, doesn't that mean you've made a mistake?" Funnily enough, that's exactly what I would have said to him if our positions had been reversed. I said, "Listen - if you find out your wife's been having sex with the milkman for the last three years, and as a result you feel like vomiting, does that mean she wasn't actually having sex with him? If I watch a documentary about the Holocaust and throw up, does that mean it didn't happen? I feel ill because I've been completely wrong about all the most important things in my life".

Long story short is, my cousin, to his great credit, refused to be cowed ultimately by the scare tactics all of us employed on each other, did a bunch of his own research, and then came to the same conclusion more and more Mormons - who we will never hear about on this site - are coming to, and left with his wife and four kids. Relatives keep attributing his decision to me, as though he was such a doofus that he would stop believing in Mormonism (after risking his life for it for two years in NYC's most dangerous neighbourhoods), just because I said, "Hey Scott - guess what? Church ain't true". "Wow, thanks for telling me, Tal. Is there a trashcan nearby so I can throw my garments into them right now? Yahoo!". Unbelievable.

Anyway, Fanny, good luck with your husband. If I can suggest something, order him the Grant Palmer book, let him read it, and then let him read the stupid FARMS reviews of it. He'll start to get the picture really fast. In fact, anything that FARMS reviews you should get him to read: "Joseph Smith's New York Reputation Re-examine", "Inventing Mormonism", "By His Own Hand Upon Papyrus", etc., then show him the reviews. The reviews will probably do him in more than the original pieces they're so bad. Also, he'll probably like the Southerton book a lot.

Since you're not paying tithing now, blow a hundred bucks on a few of these books. He's going to need facts and arguments dealing with how this thing can't be what he thought, more than just Joseph's bad behaviour. Also, it's probably a good idea to give him some space as he's doing this...

Good luck,

T.

 

Subject:

Thank You

Date:

Aug 13 17:32

Author:

FannyAl


The last few months I am finally over the sickness and can actually talk about church history without crying. I had a confrontation with my TBM parents and inlaws last month and I was able to discuss it calmly. A few months ago I would break down in tears each time I discussed polygamy and all the other B.S. I was fed from the church.

I grew up with a father who was a cynical Mormon and I had always felt like something was wrong with his testimony but he never told me anything. One time as a child he mentioned something negative about Joseph Smith and I was shocked. He said to my mom when they were discussing church history "Yeah, well your perfect Prophet did some illegal things..." I asked what they were but my parents wouldn't tell me. I was very young, so I thought it was stealing or drinking beer or something. I had no idea that my father actually knew all the church history that I am now learning. I grew up a Sunday Mormon. A mother who is "married" to her Mormon friends (social Mormon) and a father who seemed negative about the church each Sunday. Yet, they always made us go to church. I always felt even as a little girl that my parents were making us go to church so that we would "turn out good." I sensed it. I was right. I found out last month that my father hasn't had a testimony of the church for years. He still believes in the Book of Mormon and wears garments but he doesn't go to Priesthood and he barely was able to get a temple recommend for my wedding. (I am sure there was some fibbing in that interview) He lives the basic moral commandments but his struggle with church history has ruined his testimony. I confessed last month to one of my inactive sisters who then told my parents all my research and doubts. My Mom confronted me and it was very awkward for both of us. I was shocked that my Mom was actually fine with some of the polygamy history. She basically told me God is a polygamist, we don't pray to a woman because we are below man,and that she thought it might be fun to have sister wives. (her friends in particular) I said "Mom, are you honestly telling me this? I feel like I am in the Stepford Wives movie." I wanted to run far away from her. She thinks I am just sensitive about polygamy because I am young. (32years old) I guess at her age, sex and love don't matter. She has no marriage with my father so I am not surprised she wants Sister wives but that's a whole different issue. I haven't yet discussed this with my father but I heard he was relieved to have somebody else feel betrayed by the church. I am the only one of all the children to get married in the temple and stay active my whole life. I have a sister who is active now and is planning to get sealed in the temple. I feel I have to warn her but I am so afraid to offend her husband or cause contention in my family. I guess I need to write a biography soon. This was longer than I planned. Thanks for sharing your wife's story.:) I am grateful for this forum to share our stories.

The last few months I found out one of my relatives just left the church from doing church history and also my Mom's best friend. These were people that shocked me because they were always so TBM. Apparently this year many people are talking about churc history with the book "Leaving the Saints" and the internet. Plus Joseph Smith worshiping going on this year with his birthday. I wonder what would happen to the church if every member was told the true history about plural marriage and treasure hunting, Book of Abraham....the list is long. Forget DNA and all the other problems. Just give the members a real church history lesson and it would be devastating.

 

Subject:

thoughts on the subject...

Date:

Aug 14 06:30

Author:

MJB


I first read this post yesterday and have been thinking about it since then. One of the things that I've decided is that the reason Tal's wife was more agreeable to listening was that he was humbled and saddened and upset about what he'd found. He didn't go to her with fire in his eyes and threats in his voice. Instead, he had tears and humility and fear. And that struck a chord.

When I've read about people trying to convince their loved ones that this is a messed-up cult, the failures are usually caused by the approach. We can't act like know-it-alls.

As a single woman and only family member to have been in the cult, I didn't have to experience this myself. However, I kept my resignation civil and calm. My letter to the bishop wasn't confrontational and basically just said that I didn't believe anymore. I didn't feel the need to try to convince him that he was wrong. Plus he's a nice man who never did anything to hurt me. I still have some female LDS friends who are willing to come over and stuff because they know that I'm not out there to try and destroy their faith. I'm not on a mission. Getting out was right for me. But I don't have the right to tell them that they are wrong. I do believe that they can believe what they want to believe -- right or wrong.

To Tal, I just want to commend you for sharing your painful discovery with your wife while you were hurting. I think that decision is what made all the difference.

 

 

Subject:

Notice, she used the handle "wife of" NOT Mrs. Apostate....

Date:

Aug 13 16:53

Author:

Sigmund Fraud


You are not alone.

Tell me about your mother.


Just kiddin.

My wife is the same. She knows too much to reconcile, yet continues to attend... just in case it is true.

 

Subject:

Sorry Mr. Fraud

Date:

Aug 13 17:20

Author:

Mr. Apostate


My wife told me that she would like to post so I confess my guilt in tying in the chauvinistic name "Wife of Mr. Apostate" for her in the name box.

She is also Mrs. Apostate as well, but perhaps not yet as evil as I.
: )

 

Subject:

Mr. Apostate you are one lucky man.

Date:

Aug 13 21:33

Author:

Charley


It's so refreshing to read a post from a wife who isn't so brainwashed that she would leave her husband for the church.

Way to go both of you!

 

 

Subject:

Hi

Date:

Aug 13 18:36

Author:

FannyAL


Your story is so much like ours except reversed. I am the one whispering comments during talks or testimony meeting to my husband. It's too hard for me to stay quiet. I do bite my tongue sometimes at church, especially when the Bishop gets up and proclaims this special message from "THE FIRST PRESIDENCY!" A hush falls over the congregation as he tells all of us to Read the Book of Mormon. Wow, what a prophecy. Why can't our Prophet explain all the church history problems? Why doesn't he reveal something to help us understand? I still attend church and serve a calling but have stopped paying tithing. I only go with my husband so that we can be together as a family. He plans to keep the kids going and I don't have a problem with it. We agreed that I get to teach them the real Joseph Smith stories while he gets to take them each Sunday for their weekly brain washing.

I feel a lot of guilt for my huband. I feel like it's my fault that we are on this journey. IF only Polygamy didn't bother me so much I would have never done a search on google. If only I could have an answer to my many prayers and pleadings with the Lord to help me understand plural marriage, blacks not holding the Priesthood, Brigham Young's endless horrific statements, the Book of Abraham, and the list goes on. My prayers were never answered. I am a Faithful devoted wife and mother. I live the gospel and love the commandments. I loved the church but they lied and betrayed me. I love many of the things the church taught me to value but there is this nagging question that kept haunting me, and it nagged and nagged. Why would a loving God command such an inhumane principle that causes so much pain to a wife and calls it the true order of marriage, the higher law, the only way to have eternal life? I had no idea that my search on plural marriage would reveal such disturbing behavior. I am scared for the future, confused, and feel lost without my faith. I know this is part of recovering from a cult, but it's still very frightening. The first thing I have to overcome is this fear that I have been duped by Satan or that I have rejected spiritual experiences that may have happened. I have fears that maybe history is wrong. Is this some kind of game God is playing? Are we some experiment? Is HE trying to make the church appear false in every way to test me? These are still thoughts that run through my mind. Also the fear of raising my children out of the church is a scary thought. I feel lost.
I know I can't remain a true believer. I can't escape the truth. I can try and block it out but it's there and I have to be honest with myself too. I am only sick inside when I continue believing in Joseph Smith. I can't overcome the deception the church pulls on every convert. The First Presidency-I have lost all respect for the whole group of them. They lie. I can't look at Joseph Smith's picture without disgust. I came to the conclusion that it doesn't even matter if the church is true. I want no part of building up this kingdom and praising this man who repulses me. I can't worship a polygamist God and Jesus. I can't love something I hate. Polygamy wasn't a temporal commandment. The Saints were taught and it was revealed through the scriptures that it's an eternal principle and only those that enter it will be exalted. You will not find one quote from any pre manifesto Prophet that says polygamy was a temporal commandment or sacrifice to fulfill. They all taught that it's the highest order and the only marriage allowed in heaven. The rest will be angels. NO THANK YOU! I will gladly take my place in a different kingdom. I have no desire to hang out with polygamists for eternity. I prefer people who treat me as an equal. I still hold out hope that somebody will show me something to prove the history is wrong so I can wake up from this nightmare. It hasn't happened. I have been to FARMS and FAIR. What a joke. They only proved more that the church is a fraud. Many of them put such a spin on history that they become liars. I recommend you read both the apologetic and the critics side to history. It really helps to prove who is honest. Visit FAIR and tell them your questions and doubts. Just wait and see who will treat your doubts with love and respect. It won't be the TBM's. My husband is in your situation. He is reading all the books I have now and I don't discuss it with him unless he brings it up. I still try and understand his opinions even if I disagree. I will once in a while send him a Latter Day Lampoon or something funny from FAIR to laugh at (he doesn't always laugh though) but I will not pressure him at all. If he stays a believer, I respect his decision as long as he will love me and respect mine and defend me against those TBM's who will no doubt judge me. I know how it works. I used to be a TBM who thought apostates were all people that wanted to live in sin and fight against the church because they love wickedness. I know what they will think of me. I don't love sin of any kind. I will always keep my good morals I grew up with, and ironically it's these morals that have led me to stop supporting this dishonest church.
Love and peace to you:) We all know how painful this is. It does get better. There are those that will search to strengthen their testimony and those that take that leap of Faith and search for truth. I hope you find the truth in your journey. I can't have a real testimony if it's based on false stories and white washed history.

 

Subject:

Re: all responses

Date:

Aug 13 22:30

Author:

Wife of Mr. Apostate


Ok, so my real name is Mrs. Apostate, now I'm out.
Thank you for all of your responses to my post. As I was telling my husband yesterday, I feel like I have no one to talk to about it all but him. I told him that I will need to find new friends who think like me. Maybe you can all be my new friends. :)
Regarding FannyAl's post, I feel much the same especially in wanting to be sure that I'm doing the right thing. That it is not a test of faith from God. HE just wants to see how much we can take and still believe.
The church teaches us to find all answers of truth through our feelings. What if that is not true and God really wants us to use logic coupled with faith and not mess with our free will. Maybe it's a new way of thinking.

 

Subject:

Feelings

Date:

Aug 13 23:35

Author:

Elis W


I was discussing the topic of feelings with my brother and he put it this way. Your walking through the woods when suddenly a cougar jumps in front of you. Your fight or flight instincts kick in. Then you hear people laughing and realize it was only someone dressed in a costume. Your feelings of fear were defiantly real but as you gained more information your feelings changed. The feelings we had in the church were real but we didn't see the whole picture.
Another person on this site said they were glad the justice system didn't throw out all evidence, reason, and logic and just go by feelings.

 

Subject:

Re: Feelings

Date:

Aug 15 06:34

Author:

No Moniker


Good example. Another poster made this one and I've used it a few times:

Mormons are taught to identify "bad feelings" with Satan; that Satan is trying to tear you away from the "one true church". Now, if my spouse and best friend came to me and admitted an affair; I would feel all kinds of "bad feelings". Would I be correct in identifying these feelings as Satan inspired or are they simply the normal human reaction to the realization that people you trusted have betrayed your trust?

 

Subject:

I still worry sometimes

Date:

Aug 14 01:58

Author:

FannyAl


I still worry about the what if's. What if all these sick feelings were the Holy Ghost telling me to stay away from the history because it was incorrect or what if these sick feelings were because the history is evil and my whole Mormon Bubble has just been burst. I have gone with the latter. That's the problem with feelings. It's all subjective. I feel that God should give good feelings if these doctrines are of him. Why would he give me a replused and sick feeling if it's Godly? I don't buy the "milk before meat" excuse some TBM's will use. Living the gospel should bring happiness and peace. People who made themselves believe and accept slavery of women through polygamy regardless of how sickened they were by it are the types that end up jumping of bridges for their Prophet or sacrificing their children. "Follow the Prophet, even if it feels wrong he can't lead you astray." That's the scariest mentality of some members.

I will go with my heart and it's telling me this doctrine is of man. That makes the LDS church false since everything about the temple and Brighamites revolved around this principle.

 

Subject:

Knowledge is the best defense against...

Date:

Aug 14 02:47

Author:

Locutus


these kinds of thoughts. I highly recommend Carl Sagan's Demon Haunted World. I'm half way through it and it seems to me that most of what he talks about is UFO's and alien abductions, with some religious items thrown in to compare past angel visitation and demonic possession with his area of expertise. For me, substituting JS's world view with those of modern day UFO and alien abduction believers gave me a lot of insight into how and why JS was able to convince himself and those around him that what he said was real (with special emphasis on the 11 witnesses to the BOM).
I also recommend reading some of bob mccue's essays. He has alot of insight into the things all of us go through on this journey. http://www.mccue.cc/bob/start.htm

 

Subject:

You are in a mourning phase of your recovery.

Date:

Aug 14 21:11

Author:

truecolor


It is a big shock to your mind. The church that you trusted to be honest and true betrayed you. I know I felt very betrayed. Some people feel angry, some get sick, some get depressed. It is like this dark cloud over your brain and it is hard to understand. It takes at least 6 months to a year to get over this. It is a period of mourning. That is why this is recovery board. People really do need to recover mormonism. It is devastating to learn the truth.

There is a bright light at the end. It is called freedom.
I have never felt this happy or carefree when I was in the morg. I was always trying to be the perfect little wife and mother. There was always guilt. That is gone now.

I recommend yoga. It helped me. It helps you feel centered and balanced inside yourself. I throw out the mystic stuff my teacher throws in sometimes. It helps me feel centered.

Peace.

 

Subject:

"NO THANK YOU! I will gladly take my place in a different kingdom."

Date:

Aug 14 19:37

Author:

brontebell, 2lazy2login


This was the seed of my disaffection with mormonism: I was utterly repulsed by the entire celestial kingdom package. And, of course, the more I learned the more unattractive it was. When TBMs would go on about the joys they were anticipating in the CK I would be thinking - "um, can I see what's behind door #3, please?" and "how 'bout you all just come on down and visit me in the other kingdom?"

A big NO THANK YOU!

 

Subject:

We had a nearly identical story. But it took me three years to get my wife out.

Date:

Aug 13 23:55

Author:

Socrates


And you can't get more MO than Highland, UT. We've been out five years now and life is great. Good luck to you.

 

Subject:

That would not work with my wife.

Date:

Aug 14 00:06

Author:

Poky-Man


I have tried the little comments and maybe just read this one book or essay or whatever and it has totally backfired on me every time. She gets really angry and tells me that she is not making snide comments or suggestions to read this and that to me so please return the favor about my new beliefs. She is very happy with what she believes and reasons that any change will only bring her less happiness to that end.

Of course, the problem is that you can no longer share so many new discoveries about what you perceive as the truth with the one you have been closet to your whole life. It leaves you feeling so empty. I certainly hope things will improve over time but that is no certainty by any means.

So I am no longer bringing the subject of the Church and how I feel with her at all anymore. How long that will work, I have no idea.

 

Subject:

Thanks for your post. If you don't mind some questions...

Date:

Aug 14 03:40

Author:

FreeAtLast


I'm curious. Prior to your husband making non-faith-supporting comments to you about aspects of Mormonism, were there things about the LDS religion that didn't make sense to you? If yes, what were they, and what did you do about them? (Ignore them? Think about them?)

With regards to the material in the Journal of Discourses that your husband read to you, it seems from your post that you didn't like at least some of what past Mormon leaders had written or preached about. Why not? Did you not believe that they (as "Prophets, Seers, and Revelators") were conveying "the Lord's truth"?

I find it really interesting that as a practicing Mormon, you were open-minded and rational-thinking enough (and secure enough within yourself) to desire to know the truth about Mormonism that is deliberately concealed from Latter-Day Saints to bolster their faith in the church and its patriarchal leadership. Many Mormons do not possess such psychological integrity. It always intrigues me that some do (relatively few), and I wonder what is it about them that separates them from so many Mormons who apparently only want their religious beliefs reinforced.

Welcome to life post-Mormonism. It gets easier and more enjoyable with time. All the best!

 

Subject:

Re: How my husband approached me

Date:

Aug 14 08:22

Author:

Adam


Man, first i just wanna say this has been the most inspiring thing i've read in a long time. it just shows that maybe there's hope for me, heidi and matt (our 3month old son) My wife and here entire family are totally of the TBM variety and it's made it really difficult to bring up anything that might go against what the church teaches. i find mostly that my wife just gets angry w/ me so i've quit bringin stuff up. i dunno, guess i gotta regroup and figure out a different approach to the problem...i just wanna say that im glad to hear there r ppl in a similar situation to mine who are making progress. i hope someday i can say the same things u all r. thanks for the helpful post 8)

 

Subject:

Re: How my husband approached me

Date:

Aug 14 08:47

Author:

SL Slacker


Thanks for your story. I'm assuming from your story you are in Utah? If you two are interested, I'd be happy to give you some references to people that have also been completely dedicated to the church, then found the truth. There are a lot of social activities in Salt Lake and Utah County that helped my wife and I a great deal in coming out of the fog. Send me an email if you're interested.

 

Subject:

Answers to Freeatlast's questions

Date:

Aug 14 19:07

Author:

Wife of Mr. Apostate


Yes, there were definitely things in the LDS religion that didn't make sense to me.
1) Polygamy- when I learned of this doctrine at 14 years of age I was appalled! I let my leaders know my feelings and was given the answer that they were told, 'There were not enough men to marry and in this way they helped the widows,etc.' It appeased me for a time and I forgot about it. When I was newly married I actually got in a verbal fight with another elder who was defending polygamy. He became disgusted with my lack of humility in the matter and left. I brought up the subject with my bishop not long ago. I told him that my idea of heaven does not involve being a polygamous wife, I would think that heaven would be a happy place for women as well as men. In any case, the church in the last few years does not discuss polygamy or other borderline doctrines. You just don't hear about it in church, conference talks, church magazines. Out of sight, out of mind, I guess I put it on a shelf and just hoped it would go away. I now know that just because it is not talked about doesn't mean it is not doctrine.
2) Blacks and the Priesthood- At 11 or 12 my best friend at church was an African American. She was so much fun and I just loved her. I remember her telling me that her father could not have the priesthood. I wanted to know why and no one could give me an answer that made sense. I grew up in an area where I was the minority as a white. I know how it feels to be on the other side of bigotry. This was just another troubling idea I put on my shelf.
3) Women's role- I am a big believer in family and making my husband and children a top priority. What I have a problem with is the box that I felt often pushed into. I hate to sew and I have worked part time for years to help make ends meet and for my own sanity. I can't tell you how many times I have come home from Relief Society in tears from the comments of well meaning women.

As far as the Journal of Discourses, I still am shocked. How could the church rationalize some of the awful comments. A "prophet" telling his people that if they find their neighbor sinning they would be doing their neighbor a favor if they killed them (blood atonement). Mark E. Peterson's prejudice talk was a real winner too.

And yet it is still hard.

 

Subject:

Thanks for your response. Another question, and some online church data about Joseph Smith and his wives that may be of interest to you.

Date:

Aug 14 20:33

Author:

FreeAtLast


During your formative years, was there someone in your family who was an independent free-thinker? If not your immediate family, perhaps a grandparent or other relative?

Based on your response, you obviously had the independence of mind and a strong enough sense of yourself as an individual to express your feelings about polygamy to church leaders, get into a verbal fight with an elder about it, raise the issue of polygamy with your bishop, etc. Based on my 20+ years in the church, I'd say that your psychological independence and self-esteem were (are) uncommon for a Mormon woman. Too bad that more of them aren't like you.

Interestingly, polygamy remains an official part of LDS theology. The Manifesto of 1890 stated that the practice would be stopped, but the church has never rescinded the doctrine of plural marriage. Indeed, it remains a part of official church scripture (in D&C 132).

I too was raised in Mormonism prior to the church changing its racist doctrine regarding Blacks and the priesthood in 1978. Like polygamy and other aspects of Mormonism, it made no sense to me.

In my 20+ years in the church, I never once heard a LDS female voice her dislike of the church's doctrine of polygamy, in or outside of church (none voiced their support for it either!). Not suprisingly, the church's new website about Joseph Smith (http://www.josephsmith.net/portal/site) contains no mention of his polygamous wives or teachings about plural marriage. It's as though such aspects of Smith's life never existed. However, the genealogy record for Smith on the church's family history website contains the following information:

Mary Elizabeth Rollins married Adam Lightner on 11 Aug 1835.
Their son, George Algernon Lightner was born on 22 Mar 1842.
Adam Lightner died on 30 Aug 1885.
Joseph Smith married Mary Elizabeth Rollins on 17 Jan 1842, when she was about seven months pregnant (was Adam Lightner the father, or Joseph Smith?).

Zina Diantha Huntington married Henry Bailey Jacobs on 7 Mar 1841.
Henry Bailey Jacobs died on 1 Aug 1886.
Joseph Smith married Zina Diantha Huntington on 27 Oct 1841, about seven and a half months after she married Henry.

Prescendia Lathrop Huntington married Norman Buell on 6 Jan 1828.
There is no online record of Norman Buell’s death.
Joseph Smith married Prescendia Lathrop Huntington on 11 Dec 1841.

Ref. http://www.familysearch.org/Eng/Search/AF/individual_record.asp?recid=7762167&lds=0®ion=-

If you haven't considered it, you may want to attend the ex-Mormon conference in SLC in October (ref. http://www.exmormonfoundation.org/). There you will meet people who have left the church and experienced changes in their friendships, family relationships, and other aspects of their lives as a result. I've attended a few ex-Mo conferences and always enjoyed myself and learned a lot.

 

Subject:

Re: Thanks for your response. Another question, and some online church data about Joseph Smith and his wives that may be of interest to you.

Date:

Aug 14 21:50

Author:

wife of Mr. Apostate


Thanks for the complements. I've never thought of myself as a "free-thinker" but I kind of like the title. Perhaps growing up in an area where there were few Mormons and where my good friends were of other religions made me open to other ways of thinking.

I would definitely describe my husband as a free thinker, one who was raised to not care what others thought. That is what brought him into the church in the first place. After being together for over 20 years, I can't help but adopt more of his logical thinking patterns. Thats not to say that he hasn't become more like me in other ways. Extended family members have commented that they can depend on me for a logical viewpoint to their problems. Hopefully that is a good thing for them?

We have given 100% to a cause we have believed in over the years. I think it was Miya Angelo who said, "When you know different, you do different". I don't plan on throwing the baby out with the bath water. I still believe in Christ and am having a good time reading and learning from the Bible. (Lets see, I've read the BOM 4 times and the Bible...). I can easily separate God from the Mormon church because I have known good and bad in and out of the church. People are people.

We are thinking about going to the conference in October. Its a scary step though. Because then I would have to answer yes to the question, "Are you associating with apostates?" :)

 

Subject:

Some conference attendees are members.

Date:

Aug 16 02:38

Author:

FreeAtLast


I can relate to your feeling that going to an ex-Mormon conference is a bit scary. That's certainly how I felt at my first one (1998) and I imagine that many people leaving Mormonism and attending for the first time have felt the same.

It's been my experience that people who go the conferences are friendly and accepting. The typical Mormon idea of "apostates" (complete with horns and a tail! LOL) does not apply to conference attendees. Some have formally left the church and some are still in Mormonism. They understand what people go through when they discover the full truth about Joseph Smith, the Book of Mormon, early church history, etc. Whether a person left the church two decades or two months ago, they remember what it was like, the pros and the cons, friendships, things that didn't make sense, feeling of belonging, and so forth.

It sounds like another great conference has been planned this year. If you attend, I'm confident that you'll enjoy yourself and learn things that you can apply to your personal life.

 

Subject:

You scared the crud out of me...

Date:

Aug 14 11:53

Author:

Tragic Mind


The wife of Mr. Apostate wrote:
> Over a year ago my husband started to do research just out of curiosity of church history. He kept quiet for months and then started to make comments, especially in sacrament meetings. For example, a child gets up to bear his testimony saying the usual, "I know this church is true", and my DH leans over and whispers "Yeah and he also knows that Santa Claus is true too!" The comments in church really bugged me because I had no idea where they were coming from. I don't recommend that approach.

> Over time he would read me excerpts from books such as the Journal of Discourses, or make comments. Mostly I didn't want to hear it and I would tell him so. But I guess he couldn't help himself because we talk about everything with each other. I remember asking him one day if he still believed in the BOM and JS. I was shocked when he just smiled at me.

> Finally he asked if I would just read Grant Palmer's book and then he would leave me alone. I took him up on the offer because I felt I could trust Palmer. After all, he was still a church member and he looked the part of the elder Mormon man that I was taught to put on a pedestal. So I read and we talked about what I read.

> It is now 8 months later and I have read Quinn, B H Roberts, Mormon Enigma, In Sacred Loneliness, Mormon America, One Nation Under Gods, plus Dialog and Sunstone. I am currently reading Fawn Brodie's book.


For a second, I thought you were MY wife. Right up until the time that you said "I took him up on the offer..."

My wife started reading Palmer and stopped about 1/4 through. She said she "didn't agree with his conclusions." *sigh*

I hope your husband knows exactly how freaking lucky he is to have you. If he doesn't, let me know and I'll come over and pimp-slap some sense into the guy.

 

Subject:

Pimp-slap me?

Date:

Aug 15 14:18

Author:

Mr. Apostate


I had to laugh when I read your last paragraph.

I am lucky I know. But I think some of that luck was in marrying a lady who I knew would be able to use her brain in a logical fashion.

Perhaps you could read Palmer's book together.

One of the best things that worked for me was finding little gems from the J of D. Many of the things that some of the early leaders said basically proved that they were in no way prophets. Good men? Absolutely not. Evil is the word for them.

 

Subject:

Not sure about "evil" per se...

Date:

Aug 15 20:25

Author:

Tragic Mind


I think, instead of being "evil," the early leaders were simply products of their culture. Let me 'splain.

Mormonism consistently expounds doctrine based on the state of white American culture through the ages. Now, there's no way in hell I'm excusing the ideas such as Brigham Young's racist and blood-atoning views, but set in the context of frontier America in the late 1800s they were nowhere near the vile offenses they are to us today.

The thing is, Mormons take social ideas and deify and canonicise them, viz. the Word of Wisdom codified the prevalent thinking on tea, hard liquor (not beer), and such into (eventually) a commandment from God; the Book of Mormon consolidated what was at that time progressive thinking on infant baptism, etc. into "the Word of God;" and so forth. You have to remember, therefore, when the Mormons got to Utah they still carried their Missouri slave-state mentality -- and racist attitudes back then were as prevalent in the North as in the South.

Framed in today's social context the early Mormon leaders certainly held despicable, nauseating views on blacks, women, millenialism, blood vengeance, and so forth; but it is somewhat of a fallacy to cast down a verdict of "evil" when we are looking through 21st century eyes at 19th century attitudes and values.

Anyway, that's a huge tangent, but my point (which I took my time getting to) is that my wife is smart enough that she recognizes the disparity between 175 years of social development and consequently uses it as a "get out of apostasy free" card when faced with the evidence against the Church.

But I'll keep working on her.

 

Subject:

Call it what you will, I still call it evil

Date:

Aug 15 21:39

Author:

Mr. Apostate


In many ways, the leaders were a product of the early American environment as you stated.

However, in many ways, such men as BY in my opinion were evil. I point to many theories about how mountain meadows really transpired (which I will NOT give BY the benefit of the doubt that he knew nothing of it), speaking in the tabernacle (found in the J of D) that he himself would be willing to blow off the cannon himself to kill those who lie, stating that if whites and blacks marry they should be put to death and many places it seems that there is more than just circumstantial evidence that if those saints in zion dared to speak out against leaders they would be considered apostates. If they left the territory, they would be hunted down and killed.

For me, there are just too many things that seem to make BY something much more than just a man of his times.

 

Subject:

Great examples about the parallels of cheating spouses

Date:

Aug 15 19:23

Author:

FannyAl


That is exactly how I felt. I was betrayed by the church leadership and by Joseph Smith and everybody else covering up the truth. (some of them were my own family!) I felt as if I had been Joseph's wife when I read about Emma's pain. I was so angry that all those women would do that to her .I sobbed for weeks and could hardly eat or sleep.

I have had somebody I loved betray me with many women. (I wasn't married to him but we were planning to be married and he was my first love) When I read about polygamy and all the other crap the church white washed, it was the exact same feeling as I felt the day I learned my boyfriend betrayed me. Now I am recovering from the church, just like I had to recover from that relationship. I am tempted to find a new church but that's like getting a new man on the rebound. I also feel I can't trust any other religion now. If this one isn't true then none of them are. This comes from the constant brain washing of "I know this is the true church." The parallels to my deceitful ex are many. I am on the verge of losing belief in God, but that would be like never loving another man again because one betrayed me.

I am past the sickness part of the pain and the some of the anger has even left me. I am now at the stage of feeling lost and unsure of my future. I even went through a scary time of fearing that my husband would leave me if I left the church. (he never hinted at that) He loves me no matter what my decision. Now I feel secure that our marriage will be fine. (he is a TBM but reading and learning the things I did)

I think the most amazing thing happened when I decided I just couldn't believe anymore. I felt this huge weight lifted from me. It was the best feeling. Every time I tried to make my mind accept plural marriage and all the abominations of the church, I would get sick all over again. It's like trying to stay married to somebody who had an affair. You can't get the other woman out of your mind. Most women can't recover from an affair. I think most normal Mormons can't recover from the church's past.
The ones that do end up to be apologists or fanatics.

 

 

 

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