of Former Mormons
Note The most recent stories - are located at Updates. There is a biography board at
which has over 550 additional stories as of Dec 2007. There are
over 700 personal accounts of people leaving Mormonism on this site. The Short
Topics section has an additional 500 topics on Mormonism.
If you are planning on reading only one or two stories, consider stories #44, #50, #56 or
#125. #44 is a good summary of
experiences and has an atheist perspective. #50
has extensive documentation and has a Christian perspective. #56 is on Mormon women suffering from
depression which is sadly common place in the Mormon church. #125 is an excellent account of m-DNA and
the Book of Mormon. All the stories together here have helped many people leave Mormonism.
0. This is my story of why I left Mormonism. - It
contains information on the Book of Mormon, Book of Abraham, archeology and many other
issues. I did not leave because my feelings were hurt or because of sin. I left Mormonism
because I discovered the fact that the church is not what it claims to be. Contains links
- 2 A grandfather today. - He chose to live by reason,
not by the type of faith that was required in the Mormon church..
- 5 Two short stories - A woman discusses women in
Mormonism and a former Bishop tells his story
- 11 She is studying Judaism - - I count myself fortunate
not to have one of those husbands who runs away to find a nice "Molly Mormon"
because the current wife doesn't continue buying into the LDS belief system.... It seems
so ironic to me that my marriage was worst when we were both devout members of the
church... our marriage is finally becoming happier and healthier.
- 23 A former missionary to Sweden - - He had a virtually
identical experience with Spencer W. Kimball as I had. Kimball admits he had no special
witness. The author reflects on his "post-Mormon" life. Interesting style of
- 25 Life long members and temple workers - - They raised
their children to adulthood in Mormonism and discovered what Mormonism actually is long
after the children had grown up and left home. The adult children still believe in
- 26 An interesting story and observation - - The
"Investment Paradigm" (IP) predicts the typical Mormon's reaction to "real
world facts" based on his or her emotional investment in Mormon theology.
- 27 A short story on leaving - - The author writes,
"I know that this road has been traveled my others and I also know that it's a tough
road to travel. I keep in high regards the years that I was in the church. I hold no anger
- 29 A 5th generation Mormon and young woman - - The
author writes, "The times I had asked questions to Bishops, they were brushed aside.
I was never given answers. It was a relief to finally be able to piece things
- 31 A couple who recently left Mormonism - - The couple
writes, "The Mormon theology is so completely judgmental, that through direct or
indirect teaching, members believe that they are more blessed (therefore better) than
anyone who is not a member."
- 34 A Mormon who no longer believes - - A short note
explaining why he continues to be involved with Mormonism. Many Mormons are similar to him
in that they stay active for the sake of their families.
- 35 A Mormon who picks what he wants to believe in - -
He writes, "My "recovery" is different from most of your contributors, but
I don't condemn any Mormon who has to leave in order to "recover". It is not
easy being part of a cover-up church."
- 36 Why it is so difficult to leave - - He writes,
"I recently needed to know I wasn't alone when my wife and I woke up.... I won't give
you another life travel log, but thought I'd instead demonstrate why I think it is so
difficult to leave the Mormon faith."
- 37 Has it been easy? - No - - "We didn't leave the
church because of sin in our lives; we left because we could no longer believe, support,
or condone the doctrine, the policies, and the practices of the Mormon Church. Our lives
have been full and rewarding contrary to what the Church teaches about all the bad things
that will happen if a member leaves the Church."
- 38 A former missionary to France - - "I asked God
every possible question. Perhaps we will laugh about it now, but back in 1982 I asked God
about dinosaurs, about evolution.... I asked God many questions about more ordinary
aspects of LDS doctrine as well."
- 39 He looks forward to learning - - "Although our
stories are different, the one thing that we all hold in common is a devotion to truth,
even if it means significantly altering our lives, disrupting relationships and taking a
plunge into the great, wide unknown."
- 43 A graduate of MIT and now a young wife - - "I
am still learning not to be afraid of life... I grew up thinking that God wouldn't hear
your prayers if you didn't pray the Mormon way. It's only recently that I see that isn't
- 45 A "Wedding" in the Mormon Temple - - She
writes a moving experience of being married in the Mormon temple from which her non-member
parents were excluded. This is an excellent and sad account of a Mormon temple experience.
- 46 A Mormon for 31 years - - "I loved reading
everything on Joseph Smith and gave firesides to the youth, giving spiritual and funny
events of his life. I even named my first born son after the prophet Joseph."
- 47 The church wants to be viewed as mainstream - -
"The LDS church is packaged nicely, very nicely. ...very homogeneous.... Most of the
chapels have a similar look and feel. Even the lettering used within the church must
conform to standards... It works hard on its image."
- 49 A warning to those about to join Mormonism - -
"Personal experiences in the LDS Church have demonstrated to me both subtle, and
overt forms of mental control. Searching out the facts has led me to witness one of the
greatest cover-ups of all time."
- 50 An LDS church translator for 15 years - - She and
her husband write about their years as Mormons and document in great detail their reasons
for leaving Mormonism after years of devotion to the organization. Lots of documentation.
- 51 A husband and wife from 8 generations of Mormons - -
He and his wife write about why they left Mormonism. In addition to their stories,
examples of how to write letters to family and to the church are included. Good reading if
you come from a long line of Mormons.
- 52 He left Mormonism when he was a missionary - -
"The more I read from the church history, the worse I felt. The more I studied,
thought and prayed, the more problems I found with the church and what it claimed to be.
It became harder and harder for me to go out and teach."
- 55 A convert to Mormonism and her return to Christianity - -
After her family's conversion to Mormonism she writes, "It's like a cloud came over
me and blocked the 'sunshine' of Jesus' love that I had in my life before the Mormon
church... I realize that I had been a prisoner... and that now, after 21 years, I am
- 56 Mormon women and depression - - She writes, "I
have realized that I have so much potential, and that I will not be spending eternity with
my husband's other wives, being eternally pregnant... I'm certain than depression among
women in the LDS church is rampant, and I feel that being free of the burden of constant
pain and guilt will be one of the greatest accomplishments of my life."
- 57 A Student at BYU - Winter 1997 - - "I realized that
testimonies, no matter how strong or seemingly undeniable, are not unique to one system of
beliefs. People disagree about what they actually do represent, but I think that "the
spirit" is absolutely and completely created and controlled by the individual.."
- 58 A young married man and returned missionary - -
"So I guess my question is, why should a Mormon even bother to pray? A Mormon already
has all the answers... And if you should choose to pray about an issue, and find that your
answer is not in line with what the church teaches, you can rest assured that it is you
who is wrong."
- 59 A non-LDS mother writes about her son's experience - -
This mother writes about her son who was a convert to Mormonism. She says, "Imagine
raising a child for 26 years and being banned from the marriage ceremony!! There were no
plans to make, no communication with the bride or her family, no participation, no
- 60 A Finn now living in the US relates his life's
experience - - He is former missionary. "It's difficult to convey how different I
feel today compared to earlier in life. I feel much more comfortable and content with my
life. I do not feel in the least like there is something missing, as, in some ways, I did
back then. I enjoy life."
- 61 Sexual abuse by local Mormon leaders - - Sadly this
is very common in Mormonism. The LDS church is adept at hiding incidents like those told
in this story to maintain its public image. Few Mormons realize how common this is. There
are now resources available for women who have suffered abuse from LDS religious leaders.
- 62 A former missionary to Japan - - He is still a
Mormon. "Mormon life (meetings, programs, scouts, tithing, administration,
superiority) personally, has left me unfulfilled. Service, teaching, friendship, raising a
good family, etc., have been fulfilling. I no longer believe that Mormonism has a patent
on these things."
- 63 A molecular biologist at BYU - - He writes about his
Mormon life and also his work at BYU. "I worked in a laboratory at BYU (which was
funded in part by FARMS) where I isolated and sequenced human DNA segments. Molecular
biology, without exception, confirms the anthropological findings that the American
Indians are an Asian population--absolutely not Semitic [Jewish]!"
- 64 A professional writer and a scholar - - He writes
about LDS public relations, Chinese leaders and the Mormon hierarchy and other subjects.
He states, "I was astonished at the lengths to which LDS officials would go, and the
depths to which they would descend, in order to deal with a minor public relations
problem. This is the 'one true church'?"
- 65 A young man who looks at his upbringing - - Fear of
eternal failure and separation from one's family are the most common tools used by the
church to keep people in line. It play's on a child's sense of dependency on his or her
parents and community, causing a sense of separation anxiety at the thought of going
against the system. In fact, it's almost unimaginable to think of leaving.
- 66 He left Mormonism in 1958 - - "There were no
black people in the church (at least none were visible). Garments were in a single piece.
The temple endowment ceremony still had the death penalties, the minister, the five points
of fellowship. The Book of Abraham papyrus scrolls were still missing... Why, after all
these years, would I still be concerned about Mormonism?"
- 67 A family divided due to Mormonism - - "There is
no open, free exchange of ideas in this [Mormon] family... You don't share your personal
beliefs, fears, doubts, dreams, concepts, theories, discoveries, attitudes, opinions, and
views because it will just upset mom and dad. You keep your personal, family, and marital
problems locked tightly away from prying eyes..."
- 69 Leaving after 19 years - - I haven't the words to
make you understand the sadness, frustration and sense of betrayal... I said,
"Heavenly Father, this church is causing me pain. These men are not hearing me. These
men have hurt me and others. I feel these men are lying to me--that they have lied
countless times in the past."
- 70 Things I wished I had known - - A wonderful essay.
He says, "God will not condemn an honest and sincere thought or question. Truth does
not begin with an answer on behalf of which all questions must constantly rearrange
themselves. If I want the truth I must begin with questions, fearlessly, and let the
answers arrive accordingly.."
- 71 Two stories - - 1. The story of a female at BYU 2.
The author writes, "...it is so hard to let go of an organization that has been the
source of so many positive experiences in my life."
- 72a. Tough questions - - Why are the answers to tough
questions in the manuals? Her bishop also gave her a checklist for repenting of moral
Education - - A short story on life at BYU, serving a mission and recommended
information to read.
72c. Has her own web
site - - She has a list of why she knows the church is not true. She believes it is
possible to be spiritual without being religious.
- 73 Letter file - - An attorney, who is also a recent
ex-Mormon, details how he removed his name from the church records.
- 74 Escape from Mormonism - - This young woman writes,
"I still wonder, sometimes, how my life would be different had I never escaped. Only
now when I ponder these things, I do not feel a pit of sadness in my heart. Instead, I
feel a wave of relief.
- 75 See her web site on Women and Mormonism - - She is
an active participant in our online group. She writes, "In the ex-Mormon community, I
found the healing that I had been seeking. I learned of the historical contradictions,
twisted doctrinal thinking, and most important, I found people who felt like I did."
- 76 Spousal Abuse - - "What happens when you have
raised your children in this belief system...how do you put the brakes on and say, 'Hey
kids, I was wrong?' What happens to you emotionally, mentally, spiritually, and physically
when you discover that your life has been based on a lie?"
- 77 Going together - - A husband and wife recently leave
Mormonism (Jan. 1998) Both served missions and held many callings over the years. A well
written account involving Sunstone symposiums and other events.
- 78 Abuse - - This is a story about sexual abuse.
Mormonism like any other group has to face these difficulties.
- 80 Starting over - - The author of this story returned
to the LDS faith to make a fresh start after serving in Vietnam. He attended BYU, married
in the temple, and then started to question his beliefs.
- 81 A convert - - Tells of leaving the church and the
effects on the still believing family.
- 82 A Christian perspective - - Some good analysis here.
Documents the different versions of Joseph Smith's First Vision, his prophecies,
contradictions between the Book of Mormon and church doctrine in practice, and other
- 83 She went to BYU - - Writes, "We can outgrow
belief systems and occassionally expand our awareness." She studied several religions
after leaving the church.
- 84 Stop asking questions - - The similarities between
the Masonic rituals and the LDS temple endowment were the beginnings of the end of this
- 85 Feels good. Must be true - - He writes, "Many
in the church are made unhappy when pressured to believe what they can't because of their
ability to observe and reason. This ability should be admired, but instead it becomes a
- 86 A Mormon life - - The Mormon church does not teach
its members how to deal with real life problems.
- 88 Abuse - - "An autobiographical treatise on the
relationship between the patriarchal system, sexual and spiritual/ecclesiastical abuse in
my life". This was originally written for the Mormon Alliance for the 1998 edition.
The author graciously offered the story to this site.
- 89 More Abuse - - The author writes about his mission
in Norway from 1974-1976 and about being abused by a youth leader (seminary teacher) in
the Mormon church.
- 90 Yet More Abuse - - Two short stories. One on
spiritual abuse - the demands on time made by the LDS church. The other is entitled
"Raised a Mormon in Utah"
- 91 Three Stories - - A young man and young woman in
their twenties write about their experiences. A woman, who now has grown children and who
had served a mission, reflects on her association with Mormonism. These three have a
- 92 How do I tell the folks - - A man writes a detailed
letter to his family explaining why he no longer believes in Mormonism. His parents
reacted favorably to his letter. This is the actual private letter.
- 93 Two stories - - This contains two stories from women
who left Mormonism at relatively young ages. One talks about the Priesthood abuse of her
father and the other of her young years in Mormonism and her rebellion to the religion.
- 95 Two stories - - The first deals with fear and guilt.
The second was a convert at age 19. She was turned off by an Institute teacher's
homophobic comments in class.
- 96 Finally! A good meeting. - - This story contains an
account of going to a Priesthood Executive Committee meeting and proclaiming disbelief.
Also contains an exit letter.
- 97 Story from England - - A self described "Golden
Contact", he was baptized 3 weeks after his first contact with the missionaries. He
worked hard to be temple worthy, but in the end, the church did not meet his needs.
- 99 Let down - - This author was looking forward to the
experience of a lifetime.
- 100 Unanswered prayer - - Although he wanted to
believe, this convert at 18 left the church at 25.
- 102 Golden Contact - - This convert tells of his
conversion and later about his mission to Puerto Rico. His mission was not the best 2
years of his life.
- 105 Bored with Mormonism - - The author became
involved with a fundamental Mormon group.
additional stories - scroll down by dates!! Updated Dec 2007
of Former Jehovah's Witnesses
- A former Jehovah's Witness - - Great reading for Mormons or
those who want to look at growing up in an authoritarian group.
- She was in both groups - - This young woman was raised as a JW
and converted to Mormonism. A short story.
- Growing up as a Jehovah's Witness - - He has an interesting
account of the failed Watchtower 1975 prophecy concerning the end of the world. [Eric's
note - I was a Mormon missionary in Finland in 1975 and saw many JWs quit their jobs to
proclaim the end of the world.]
- They wanted our baby to die! - - The inside story of a former
third generation Jehovah's Witness. "I was taught that the Jehovah's Witnesses had
the only true religion." He is now a Christian minister.
- A long tradition of being a Jehovah's Witness - - "I read
the book Crisis of Conscience, by Ray Franz. I knew the book was considered an 'apostate,'
book, but it helped me immensely. It enabled me to understand that there were some serious
internal problems within the Society and the Governing Body. [Eric's note - This is
identical to a Mormon finding serious problems with Mormonism.]
Stories of Former Jehovah's Witnesses
to Recovery from Mormonism