Subject: The Mother Of All Battering Rams.
Date: Feb 18 02:00 2003
Author: TLC

In another thread that Steve Benson started about families, one of the posters responded by saying: "How about a little compassion on your part for those still left behind." In other words, let's cut them some slack, play nice and honor the fact that they're family [even though they still believe in Mormonism].

Man did that get my blood boiling.

You just get to the point where being nice doesn't work anymore. Mormons don't get nice - they don't understand the basic concepts that underlie most civilized human relationships.

They're bulls in the china-shop of human emotions.

They're vampires sucking the life-blood out of familial relationships.

They're mosquitoes tormenting the hell out of humans all over the earth with their missionary work.

They're vultures ripping at the flesh of anyone who they perceive as being dead to their god.

They're judge, jury and executioner with their insidious "courts of love."

They're cockroaches that infest the most intimate parts of our sexuality.

They're parasites that feed off of the livelihood of others.

They're an encephalitis that attacks the brain and renders it incapable of normal function.

They're a cancer that spreads through one's identity till it's dead and gone.

They're oleanders that beguile you with their pretty pink blossoms of family togetherness but have poison in their veins when it comes to temple marriages and non-member families.

They're rats that breed incessantly with no regard for the health or well-being of the mother.

Pick a scourge, any scourge. Choose any one that's out there and Mormons are the personification of it. They rip and tear at the human flesh and psyche until the only way you can survive is by fighting back with equally appropriate method and force. It's either that or lie down and let them trample you to death in their Pamplonic run for the celestial kingdom.

Being nice doesn't work and turning the other cheek only gives them another cheek to mutilate. There is no virtue in playing nicey nice with Mormons because nice isn't a word in their lexicon.

Mormonism is the great mother of all battering rams and she ain't afraid to go after her own if they don't open up the doors to their souls and let her in.

So my answer to playing nice with Mormons is: I don't like rats and gnats and mosquitoes and cockroaches and cancers and parasites. If that's the way you're going to play then I'll check my compassion at the door, put my nice on ice and let you have both barrels between the eyes.

Compassion for what? A scourge?

I don't think so.

Subject: "Bring Out Your Dead!," they cry , as they pull their cart up to your house . . .
Date: Feb 18 02:06
Author: steve benson

"Throw your corpses on the pile--you know, the ones we killed with the plague of Mormonism, so we can hug them, as if nothing happened, and tell them how much we love them."

We who are the victims of LDS corpse abuse have to establish our own Centers for Disease Control. Duct tape and plastic sheeting just won't work. We're talking quarantine and fumigation.

Thanks, TLC, for another home run.

Subject: er . . . did you make that trip out to see the TBM family yet, btw, TLC? : )
Date: Feb 18 02:29
Author: J.

I just mention it as your passions seem a wee bit roused at this moment . . .

I have experience with emotionally draining families and have felt they're all and more of what you said above. except for the breeding. my lot weren't great breeders . . .

Subject: I'm going to see them tomorrow J.
Date: Feb 18 02:38
Author: TLC

I'm taking off work a little early to avoid the traffic and staying long enough that the traffic will be a non-issue when I come home.

As it turns out, it's my mom's birthday tomorrow as well and never once in the years since I've been aware that she had a birthday, have I ever failed to remember it. I'm actually the one who calls all of the other siblings to remind them of my folk's birthdays and anniversaries.

Who said there were no advantages to having a gay son? In my folk's case, it means they get phone calls they wouldn't otherwise get on those special days. They should be down on their knees thanking their mogod for me instead of asking him to fix me! :-)

I'm going and I'm going to enjoy my time with my dad and I'm going to take my mom a bare-root rose for her garden. My bark is louder than my bite when it comes right down to it. That is of course, unless I'm provoked and then I'm a Rottweiler with rabies.

If my mom starts getting testy, I'll just remind her that I've provided her with both a grandchild and a great-grandchild. That always shuts her up. BUT, if that doesn't work, I'll pull out the rose bush and beat her around the head with it.

That outta do the job.


Subject: sounds like a good plan, Tom —
Date: Feb 18 02:42
Author: J.

and if plan A doesn't succeed, i hope plan B doesn't turn out to be too awfully messy! ; )

Subject: Your anger is understandable....
Date: Feb 18 02:37
Author: UtahSurvivor

And you make some good points here. However, although I did not read the thread you are referring to, I feel showing compassion is also a good point.

How does that saying go...Hate the sin, but not the sinner? As angry as Mormons make us, and yes, they make me very angry at times also, it may behoove us to remember it is the indoctrination of the Church that makes them behave the way they do. The Church is the scourge, not the people. The people are merely hypnotized, and I honestly don't believe they even realize the harm they do to others in most cases.

I'm sure it is not doing you any good to have boiling blood. It is more beneficial to the compassionate to show compassion than it is to the recipient. Extreme anger only hurts the angry. The Mormons will never admit they or the Church are wrong, so they won't feel the stress you are feeling by being so angry. In other words, you are only hurting yourself.

I know this is not what you want to hear right now, but after reading your posts here, I think you are far too intelligent and too decent of a person to waste your life feeling such bitterness, especially toward your family.

Sorry I didn't express myself here with the same eloquence that you did, and please don't think I am against you. I am actually on your side. I know from past experience that bitterness and anger only hurts the bearer.

OK, I'm off of the soapbox now. I hope some of this made some sense. My opinion, after all, is only important to me, and that's the way it should be.

Subject: That's cool UtahSurvivor.
Date: Feb 18 02:47
Author: TLC

I'm actually very calm about all things Mormon these days. Mostly I'm referring to what I have learned to be true in the past - speaking from the present tense. (And you thought you were having problems getting your point across!)

Compassion has actually been a weakness many times in my relationship with my family. It wasn't until I really stood up to them and put my foot down and said, "Stop. Enough," that they began to behave more respectfully towards me.

My point in this post is simply that being nice with Mormons isn't always the answer because they just don't get nice. They often perceive one's niceness as an invitation to violate boundaries and go after the their heathen jugulars.

I'm cool with Mormons as long as they don't aim their battering rams at me anymore. But there was a time when I was so battered by them that I could barely stand on my own two feet. I still recall a lot of the anger that I felt then but never expressed because I was too intimidated to do so.

Those days are long gone. I'm not afraid to express anger now and maybe because of that, I don't have much left to express.

I got your points and I appreciate them. Thanks!

Subject: OK, I'm glad you're calm.....
Date: Feb 18 03:05
Author: UtahSurvivor

And you are totally correct that we all need to stand up for ourselves and at least make an effort to get others to respect our beliefs. I couldn't agree more. Live and let live, but we all know Mormons don't follow that creed.

My grandmother used to use the phrase "Consider the source" whenever someone did something that made me angry. In my younger day, I was the typical hot-headed redhead, so my blood was boiling quite often. Back then, when she would say that, I thought she was just trying to calm me down and didn't really know what she was talking about. Now that I am older, I would give anything to have her back long enough to tell her just how smart she was.

So, in a nutshell, my unsolicited advise to anyone would be to live and let live, consider the source, and make the most of your life while you can.

Subject: If the assault continues, TLC has every right to be angry and to respond in a way that defends his boundaries . . .
Date: Feb 18 02:50
Author: steve benson

Otherwise, it would be like saying to the burglar: "You know, it really bothers me that you've invaded my home, tied me up with an electric cord, ransacked my place and then kicked me before you crawled out the window but, hey, anger only hurts me. I'll try a little compassion, instead. Let's do lunch."

Subject: Re: If the assault continues, TLC has every right to be angry and to respond in a way that defends his boundaries . . .
Date: Feb 18 03:29
Author: UtahSurvivor

OK, I know there are a lot of anger issues on this board, and I'm sorry if I offended any of you.

I feel using a burglary as an analogy in this case is going a little overboard, but like I said before, my opinion means nothing to anyone but myself.

And also like I said before, live and let live. Some people actually enjoy wallowing in bitterness and hatred, and I wouldn't think of standing in their way.

I will add I think it is a sad statement when someone tries to promote some compassion and tolerance, and gets attacked for it.

Subject: I think it's sad when people who establish defense perimeters against cultish onslaught are accused of wallowing in bitterness and hatred (

Subject: I didn't miss your point and you didn't offend me . . .
Date: Feb 18 03:39
Author: steve benson

I disagree with your point of "live and let live" when cult mongers want to invade one's living room and tell one how to live.

This is not a personal matter where offense is taken.

It is simply a matter of principle.

Subject: Re: I didn't miss your point and you didn't offend me . . .
Date: Feb 18 04:09
Author: UtahSurvivor

It is a matter of your principle, and you have every right to defend it, as does anyone.

I hope I am not coming across as saying one shouldn't stand up for their rights or beliefs. I definitely don't believe that anyone should let people walk all over them.

All I'm trying to say is I think one can stand up for their beliefs without being consumed with anger and hatred. Anger and hatred is more detrimental to the bearer than to the recipient. That's all I'm trying to say.

I realize you have not been out of Mormonism relatively long, and maybe someday you will understand how futile the anger is.

Maybe you need the anger right now. I understand that also. I have had the doctrine of the cult shoved down my throat too, you know, and I have members of the cult in my family, also. But I have finally come to the point in my life where I can set the boundaries without anger or hostility. If anything, I try to look at it all with some humor, which is sometimes easier said than done, but easier on my heart.

Releasing the anger was a long, hard road, and the only reason I replied to TLC's post was the obscure possibility he or someone else could maybe benefit a little from my mistakes. If not, hey, all I lost here was some sleep and typing effort.

Go with whatever works for you. If you enjoy the anger, go with that. Speaking strictly for myself, I am glad I have gotten somewhat past that.

Subject: It is a common misperception, and a rather presumptuous one, I might add . . .
Date: Feb 18 04:46
Author: steve benson

to tell others that anger is futile and, by not-so-subtle implication, inappropriate.

Anger is a human emotion that is real, powerful and valid. When properly focused, it is a tool that can fuel action and change in the face of injustice.

--If Rosa Parks had not been angry at white bigotry, she would not have refused to give up her seat on that Montgomery bus and there would not have been the advancement of civil rights.

--If the Free World had not been angry at Hitler, there would not have been the destruction of the Nazi empire and the end of the gassing of Jews.

--If Jews had not been angry at the Mormons for baptizing Holocaust victims for the dead, that gross practice would not have been stopped.

--If the people of the United States had not been angry with religious-based prejudice, the Mormons would not have abandoned their anti-black policy as soon as they did.

And for you to suggest that to use anger as a surgical weapon against oppression is something that the user enjoys, demonstrates, in my opinion, an astounding smugness and prejudgment on your part.

Now, I'm getting angry at you--and rightly so.

If you want to position yourself in refusal to get angry or to use anger as a weapon for change, fine.

But, please, spare me the self-righteousness. There's enough of that among the LDS.

And please step aside, if you don't mind, while I focus my anger against the human wave attacks of head-, heart- and home-invading Mormon cultists.

Subject: Re: It is a common misperception, and a rather presumptuous one, I might add . . .
Date: Feb 18 16:20
Author: UtahSurvivor

I'm more than happy to spare you my self-righteousness. You seem to have enough of your own.

I'm a little surprised at your hostility about this subject. I expected a little more tolerance of the opinions of others out of the great Steve Benson. Isn't the Mormon intolerance of others' opinions exactly what you are so angry about?

I defended you once on this board when others condemned you for "name dropping." I see now what a presumptuous act that was.

I'm also more than happy to step aside while you focus your anger on me and whatever else you see fit. You are the Golden Boy on this board and the role model for many people here. I wouldn't dream of having the audacity to defy you or your anger.

Subject: A bit of a tangent
Date: Feb 18 17:12
Author: Nightingale

I can see that UtahSurvivor was expressing some identification with TLC's issues, in view of her own experiences, and that she was sincerely offering suggestions for what she has found of value in her own recovery, and TLC didn't take offence. One thing that's very hard to remember for many of us is that WE ARE ALL DIFFERENT and what works for one or is appropriate for their circumstances doesn't even apply to someone else. Seeing the path as "one size fits all", whichever path it is, can diminish another's experience and understandably comes across as unhelpful or even offensive.

Likewise, seeing "recovery" as a continuum along which we move in a straight line can fail to take into account that recovery doesn't work that way. Yes, there may be phases, but not everyone goes through all of them or goes through them in sequential order. I kinda hate the stage concept of recovery but it's not like you move from phase 1 (whatever it is) to phase 2 through to phase 3 and never go back and poke around in previous phases again. If one of the "stages" is anger, it's not like anger is "bad" and a recovery goal is to "get over" the anger. (I am simplistically speaking - some people may have need for psychological counseling around these issues and I'm not in any way addressing that here.) If we think like that and see somebody ranting, we can be VERY judgmental and self-righteous about how they haven't progressed in recovery as far as we have. This is not helpful and not realistic.

In pastoral care training I've taken (grief support stuff in a religious setting), the MOST important thing to remember is not to project our own experiences and needs onto the person we're with. Even when I got an unexpected "practicum" in the subject when I experienced multiple sudden close losses of family and friends (so then I was much more familiar with grief issues than just by reading the textbook) I had to remember that other people's feelings and needs weren't necessarily the same as mine and our path through the grief would be different because we are different people with vastly diverse experiences and each loss is distinctly personal to the one experiencing it. It would be of zero assistance to anyone for me to project my feelings onto their grief experience instead of hearing what their feelings and needs are, that arise out of their OWN experience, not mine.

This same thing applies to RfM, IMO. It would be pretty easy for me to say we shouldn't be angry (or should "move past" the anger) about the church because I don't have constant intrusions into my life from the church and TBM family, as so many others here do. I read about grown people having major life stress due to TBM family and it makes ME angry just to read it!!! Imagine TLC, a fully grown up, accomplished, successful man having to dread an encounter with his TBM mom because she won't like how he's dressed or his house decor or WHO HE IS. Imagine Mary Ann, attending a parent's funeral, suffering dread and stress on top of bereavement at the thought of even SEEING some TBM relatives. And all the other posters here who endure the same EVERY DAY. Who am I to say how they should or shouldn't feel? Even if I am well-meaning, it can still come across as lacking in understanding or too lightly dismissive of major issues. And it's too similar to the very thing that TBMs and the church do to exmos - I think that's a big part of why it hits people's hot buttons. Even if people around here ASK for advice, I'm very careful to try and hear what they're saying and to avoid the "shoulds". There's nothing "should" about anything in recovery or with emotions in general, IMO.

I recall you've had some rough times too, Survivor, which even your name indicates. Sorry if you felt attacked when I know you only meant well. I do understand why, though, some comments can come across as unhelpful or offensive, in particular if they sound like comments/attitudes from Mormonism that plague people. I happened to be listening to a radio sermon yesterday, on grace, which was all about live and let live. The preacher made a lot of good points that I wish I heard more of from church people, like we should be happy who we are and happy who other people are and not try to tell them what they should think, feel or do. BUT after a really good sermon, even the preacher guy made a comment to the effect that we are all free to make our own decisions but if we don't make certain ones, we haven't thought about things in the right way! That's precisely the attitude that RILES exmos in particular, I've noticed! It's so demeaning to people's intelligence and capacity to reason for themselves and right to do so.

In particular I wanted to make a comment about this:

UtahSurvivor wrote:
> I expected a little more tolerance of the opinions of others out of the great Steve Benson. Isn't the Mormon intolerance of others' opinions exactly what you are so angry about?

I can see how IF opinions come across as THE SAME as intolerant Mormon statements and opinions, the anger is perceived to be directed at the same thing. But my point here is that putting our expectations on someone for how they should think or behave is not fair to them and again, is PRECISELY what so many Mormons do, which is the source of a lot of anger around here! I've read posts about the expectations of Steve's family and how much pressure that could be - pressure to not even be true to yourself, as if image or doctrine is more important. So I'm hoping that posters here don't hold up some ideal of theirs that Steve should fit into - it's THE SAME THING!!!! And this would aggravate me if it was happening to me.

> You are the Golden Boy on this board and the role model for many people here.

Again, same comment as above. I dunno - maybe it's because I'm not American, not BIC, etc., but even though I'm aware of ETB and Steve's blood relationship to him, I don't have any problem seeing him (and Mary Ann) primarily as an exmo poster on this board. Yes, his posts garner a lot of interest but I'd go so far as to say that at this point, it's because he has interesting material to present. It doesn't matter what your name is, people will read your posts largely because you have something to offer. I kinda wince to see any expectation that Steve owes anybody anything, i.e., that he's a "role model" or anything like that. Rather, I hope we can each stand on our own, not leaning on anybody else for the basics. I find Steve's posts very interesting but him being exmo or posting here doesn't influence my decisions or bolster my confidence that I made the right decision about the church or anything like that (no offence, Steve). I'd hope we could NOT try and bind someone up in the noose of our expectations of them. However Steve expresses himself or whatever his needs are, if I don't have unrealistic expectations of who he is or what he should do or say, then I won't be putting unfair pressure on him and what's more, I won't suffer any disappointment if/when I happen to find out that he's only HUMAN! (So is likely to have at least one flaw!)

I don't mean to rag on you, Survivor. I just felt like commenting on the little exchange you two had here and about some of your remarks related to Steve. As always, I hope that we have some degree of fellow feeling just because we're exmos and have negative Mormon experiences in common.

Subject: UtahSurvivor: this isn't about anger, rage, or bitterness.
Date: Feb 18 11:52
Author: Cheryl

It's about carving out space for oneself by setting reasonable boundaries. That is a human right. Setting boundaries does not necessarily demonstrate anger. It may simply be a matter of coming to terms with reality.

Additionally, people do have a right to their feelings. Some people may feel anger. So what? That's their business. They have a right to be honest with themselves about how they feel. They will never come to terms with themselves until they face their feelings.

Feelings are human. Judging how others feel is unfair and, I fear, very Mormon.

If you don't want others to judge your private feelings, please show the same courtesy to them.

Subject: I don't think Steve was attacking or flaming you at all UtahS.
Date: Feb 18 03:38
Author: TLC

The exchanges here are often lively and impassioned. If anything I think Steve was just very much disagreeing with you, which is more the norm here than the exception.

Take a breath and realize that this is a very hot topic for those of us who've had to deal with overly aggressive and disrespectful families. There's bound to be some fur flying while we discuss it.

Quick, run for cover, circle the wagons. Benson's got his sixshooters out again and he ain't afraid to use 'em!!


Subject: LOL! TLC, that was amazing.
Date: Feb 18 03:48
Author: Tedd

I know what you're feeling as you write, and holy God that's so f*cking descriptive. But I just have to sit here and laugh at your descriptions, they're so graphic, and so amazing, yet so true in so many ways. Although you may have gone a tad bit over board :-)

I have to agree that one must put his/her foot down and really let them have it, and let them know who is boss. Us exmo's are usually out numbered by a long shot by TBM family, so if we don't put out foots down, and tell them how things are, things can really get out of hand.

I think it took me about three years to finally tell my family how I felt, and when I finally did, I was ready as I could have ever been. Now today, I will argue with my entire family about the subject, take em all on if they so please.

But I'll have to say I have to cut them some slack sometimes. Push me around? Never! But Goddamn they set themselves up pretty bad sometimes, and I just don't have the heart to blow them away with my words. I do enough of that.

Good post! lol

Tedd (Still laughing)

Subject: I thought you went to see your family today TLC
Date: Feb 18 04:42
Author: Nightingale

When I saw your post, I thought you were going to be talking about YOUR mother, LOL!!!!

I am guilty, guilty, guilty of always preaching "be nice". I'm going to stop it now and try a more direct approach for a while. Maybe I'll really like it. (I'm considering getting some practice by returning a call from the mishies and NOT being nice!) But knowing me, I won't pull it off too well! (Even now my head is saying, "but they're just kids, it's not their fault, blah, blah, blah...") As for the nice thing, I'm trying it IRL, not just with the church.

Date: Feb 18 07:54
Author: catholicgirl

It's a classic.

I swear, TLC, you and I have the same family.

Hey, great idea for a new reality television series: "Mormon moms go toe-to-toe. . ."

Subject: Wow
Date: Feb 18 08:22
Author: Shakjula

I truly enjoy posts like this simply because they give me a whole new perspective upon my own childhood and family life. Rarely have I witnessed families being so subordinated to a particular religion to the point where it's practically an obsession. I can't really imagine actual human beings utilizing such hardcore psychological and emotional tactics upon their own flesh and blood -- people they claim to love -- whereby individuals are very much beaten into submission, or the mere threat of the use of these weapons of sophistry will bring someone into line.

All of the beautiful little advertisements about families being forever take on an eerie quality in light of these revelations -- and I cannot doubt the veracity of what is said by people here because there have been far too many instances of the same behavior. Yes, everyone has "free agency" until he or she decides to use it. Then we'll either drag you back, or you'll cease to exist.

Subject: Mormons are too nice.
Date: Feb 18 11:32
Author: Cheryl

The problem is they don't know the meaning of the word. They think they can talk nicey-nicey as they push and ram and mutilate. They're like smooth talking sexual predators who are so nice until they have a victim cornered.

The key to getting along with Mormons is standing up to them and holding to boundaries.

Normal people can't allow Mormons to trample them. Girls don't have to allow sexual intrusions in order to pacify predators who stalk them. Exmos don't have to cater to Mormons who harass them.

My Mormon relatives have only learned to be "nice" since I learned to insist on boundaries. Mormons can be as aggressive and predatory as any other kind of stalker if we allow it.

Subject: I think I am nice to my TBM family.
Date: Feb 18 11:42
Author: brefots

I really am. Okey I told my dad that if he didn't stop preaching I would end contact with him and that worked, he never dares to preach anymore. I've made it clear that I'll not participate in anything Mormon, whenever my family begins to talk about their boring church I change the subject or walk away. But I am nice, I really am as nice as I can possible be without sacrificing my integrity.

Subject: Exactly right. That's how I am with my family too.
Date: Feb 18 12:49
Author: Cheryl

I don't show the same kind consideration for local ward members as I do toward family.

When locals harass me now, they know they've been rebuffed. I see them as nothing more than abusive strangers who stalk me in my home. They're people I don't know or care about. They're people who have been told for many years to stay away. I've told them. My husband has, as well the local police chief several times. Those Mormons deserve no "niceness" whatsoever.

Subject: The thing is that, outside my family,....
Date: Feb 18 13:15
Author: brefots

I don't treat Mormons differently than I would treat anyone else except that I usually avoid them. I have had the luck of not being stalked by strangers, but it really would make no difference if it's Mormon strangers or Jehovah's witnesses or Born-agains did harass me. If they are rude I'll get them out of my face. If anyone acts friendly I won't just accept that at face-value Mormons included. Strangers are strangers, my trust has to be earned, membership in any organization doesn't change that. Knowing that Mormons often friendship people out of dishonest reasons makes me extra weary of them.

Subject: Really good perceptions here!
Date: Feb 18 11:46
Author: Seņa

Cheryl wrote:
They're like smooth talking sexual predators who are so nice until they have a victim cornered.

WOW, you sure have that right on!

Subject: Once again ... (MATURE AUDIENCES ONLY)
Date: Feb 18 13:56
Author: Saucie

I stand in line to kneel at the throne of your DAZZLING verbiage.
P. S. you forgot to mention the plague, Mormons are like the plague.
One other thing... my bottom line for relationships is this, and you may feel free to borrow it... If someone doesn't accept me as I am, including family, f*ck EM!!
Life is too short to spend time batting your head against the stone wall of prejudice or conditional love.

Subject: I am next in line,
Date: Feb 18 14:02
Author: mary ann benson

standing in awe of your great wisdom, oh, mighty one. ;)

This is a keeper. Thanks, TLC.

Good luck, have fun with your Dad. Say hi to your mom for me.

Subject: Great post!
Date: Feb 18 15:26
Author: Adrienne

I am fortunate that none of my close family members are Mormons because leaving has been so much easier. That great description is exactly how I think of the missionaries when they stopped by my house. They finally have left me for now, and with no Mormon relatives I will slip away when I move. I do have the exit letter written, but it's annoying that we have to go to the trouble of doing this, since other churches leave you alone if you stop going.

The only Mormons who would give me trouble are my ex-husband and his mom, but my ex and I do not even speak to each other. I haven't seen or heard from him since the divorce was first filed, and I'm glad. If he comes crawling back for any reason, I'll tell him I left the Morg, and he'll run like the cockroach he is, especially if I wear a cross necklace. Many of your metaphors describe how I feel about my ex-husband.


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