Subject: How influential was the internet on your decision to leave the Mormon church?
Date: Sep 06 03:37
Author: Bye Bye Morgie

The internet was such a breath of fresh air for me. I could sit down at the computer, in the privacy of my own home and research the Mormon church.

I quickly found exmormons were not the crazy, evil apostates I was warned to stay away from while growing up in the morg. If you read the stories of why people left the church on this website, so many are well written and full of emotion. Pretty heavy and influential stuff.

What finally made me decide I was leaving was the information on Book of Abraham. It's laughable that Mormons still believe Joseph Smith translated that from papyrus that we now can translate and with a little knowledge of what the figures really mean, Joseph just screams fraud.

Also, visiting boards like this show many people have the same issues with Mormonism that I do. It helps to know that you aren't the lone black sheep but a large number of people have the same opinion of the church.

With all this information available, it sure makes the traditional Mormon view of the world and how it fits into the scheme of things laughable but at the same time sickening.

I'm sure the brethren in Salt Lake hate the internet with a passion. It's a free flow of information that they can't regulate. Funny, how many dictators want to control the flow of information when they want to control their subjects.

The internet saved me from the tyranny of Mormonism.

Subject: The internet didn't exist when I left the church.
Date: Sep 06 03:44
Author: TLC

But the internet exists now and it's very much influenced what I know and understand about Mormonism - things I had no idea about when I was up to my eyeballs in it.

I'm still convinced that the internet is playing a big role in the deconstruction of Mormonism. You can run but you cannot hide. Not from the internet anyway. What used to be a little snowball rolling down the hill has now turned into a roaring avalanche.

I'm sitting here grinning just thinking about it.


Subject: There's a lot of unhappy Mormon church goers.
Date: Sep 06 04:39
Author: Bye Bye Morgie
Mail Address:

They are up to their ears in callings, expectations, and financial obligations to the church. In the spring general conference, the members were told the bar was being raised and the church expects even more!

You have people in the church that believe it's true but sometimes when you get foreclosed on, lose your job, and things like that, these people soon see the church offers nothing to help them. It just takes. I have a sister in-law in Utah who is getting so fed up with the church. Her husband is working three jobs. They are hoping they can keep their house. But yet they make him a high councilman in the stake. He's never home now. The church just wants more and more. I think a poor economy will motivate many to finally leave the church.

Subject: Re: There's a lot of unhappy Mormon church goers.
Date: Sep 06 06:10
Author: mark brown

this web site was my guide and gave me the support I needed, I never posted then just read and did it.


Subject: Re: There's a lot of unhappy Mormon church goers.
Date: Sep 06 11:10
Author: rafiki

Bye Bye Morgie wrote:
> You have people in the church that believe it's true but sometimes when you get foreclosed on, lose your job, and things like that, these people soon see the church offers nothing to help them. It just takes. ...The church just wants more and more.

I'm a little the opposite. It seems to me that the most rational way to decide which church to attend, if not based on doctrinal convictions, would be to figure out which church could use your help the most. The only problem is, the help largely centers on doctrinal convictions (for example, is teaching Sunday school really logically "service" if one is fairly persuaded the things one is teaching are misleading?)

THERE IS NO ESCAPING THE DOCTRINE. I like the high expectations, but they can be found elsewhere I think (and not always do expectations have to be coerced - many places one can participate without pressure).

I'm a little hypocritical, though. I've not lost my job, gone bankrupt, etc, due to the church. I'm in a position of luxury (well... broadly defined - I've got about $2800 in the bank, but I'm a student so it seems like tons) where I can act all aloof and like material things are irrelevant to me. He. No doubt ten years from now I'll be whistling a different tune. Nonetheless, from an idealistic standpoint, the amount the church asks is appealing in some senses. It's not the amount, but the types of things it asks that's more bothersome.

Subject: That's a very good point--LDS service is not "service"
Date: Sep 06 16:40
Author: Mojo Jojo

Example, my wife. She spends hours doing "church service." But what does her service consist of? Spending hours preparing primary lessons, preparing sharing time for primary, preparing relief society lessons, and so on. Hours and hours on "service" that nobody really cares that much about and which does very little in the long run, or the short run, to make anybody's life better or to help anyone truly in need.

Completely wasted time, in my opinion.

If what she really wanted was to "serve," I can think of many other ways that she could do it that might actually have an impact on someone's life for the positive.

Subject: Re: How influential was the internet on your decision to leave the Mormon church?
Date: Sep 06 06:12
Author: no morg

Your story sounds exactly like mine. Lots of questions, BOA, internet research, etc..

Subject: This site saved my sanity!!
Date: Sep 06 06:43
Author: jujube

The internet was not influential in my decision to leave at all but boy, was it comforting when I finally found it!!! I floundered for 20 years as the black sheep of my family, never allowed to express any of my misgivings, being shunned, being totally cut off (when I moved in with my husband before we were married), treated like a leper and then, voila, as soon as I married ("you knew that was the wrong thing to do. You knew better"), the ban was lifted and I was tolerated (note I did not say forgiven and welcomed back).

I left the church at age 24 after dutifully (but really not faithfully) attending. Oddly, once I got to BYU, I became inactive (because my parents weren't around). Come summer, back in church (ugh).

I did not find RFM until about 1998. I cannot tell you how I think it saved my sanity to find out that there were loads of people like all of you who had the very same feelings I had. I had never been able to express them to any church member or family member. I felt like I hit pay dirt!

People think I am addicted to this board but I tell them it is my therapy. I don't know when I will have had my fill of it. Especially now, I am in a vicious family fight, our parents having died this year, and the 3 ex-mos against the 2 Turbo TBMs who are executors of the estate. Not a pretty sight. I am pretty much the focal point as the executors are accusing me of unduly influencing the other 2 ex-mos (my brother's leaving "killed" my mother). Mind you, my fellow ex-mo family members are more intellectual and much smarter than I, but Satan appointed me his handmaiden to take over their minds.....and so it goes. Lots of bitterness and they keep saying that our family does not agree to disagree. Well, excuse me! My sister WILL NOT READ ANYTHING in opposition to the church (suggestions from this site like Mormon Enigma) and they just keep mouthing over and over for me to read the BofM and pray about it. It turns out that I didn't read it correctly during two semesters at BYU religion classes. And when I tell them I did pray about it and got a different answer, they disregard it.

So, although the internet did not influence my decision to leave (I don't know how I had the fortitude nor the insight by myself, really, but I did), it helped preserve my sanity. I was getting VERY discouraged and down on myself for not being able to see what the rest of my family saw (at the time the other two ex-mos were still members; I was the only apostate. A very, very lonely position).

Thank you all for some really fine thoughts here. I could not have made it without you!

Subject: Re: How influential was the internet on your decision to leave the Mormon church?
Date: Sep 06 07:04
Author: Gonealong time
Mail Address:

There was no internet when I left... Just a dramatic mind shift of lost faith, even in the divinity of Christ.
BUT, just like others, was I surprised when I search Mormon a few years ago and found this and other sites. I became quite a junkie for awhile, soaking up the wisdom of others. AND, finding out the clues that the church was man-made.
This knowledge finally brought me peace with my decision.
And, it feels good to lurk about in a community of people like me.

Subject: I was a TBM my first 3-4 months on this message board
Date: Sep 06 08:04
Author: alex

I was a TBM my first 3-4 months on this message board. I never would've left the church if it hadn't been for the internet's capacity of content and collaboration tools. The Internet has existed for over 30 years. Once AOL, Prodigy, CompuServe and lots of mom/pop ISPs started providing network capability for users to use Mosaic and later web browsers then a standard medium emerged that was widely used and when the world came online it brought with it the libraries of the world and the ability to collaborate and communicate (especially in cases where people want to be anonymous) to all.

Subject: It was instrumental in my exit...
Date: Sep 06 09:25
Author: anon

I would still be an unhappy Mo today if it hadn't been for the internet and for this website. I can't even begin to tell you the impact the exit stories had on me...hands down they were the biggest influences on my dissonance.

The only drawback that I see is the apologetic websites. I think some TBM's will think to themselves that they have to get a Fair and Balanced picture, and in doing so will become so confused at all the double-speak and misleading pseudo-scholarship that they'll just revert to "trusting" in the Brethren. A good example can be the Book of Abraham. The apologetics are so convoluted and laden with boring/scholarly sounding yammerings that it could be easy for a TBM to say, "ah screw it..." and resort to faith rather than intellect when deterring the veracity of the Church's claims.

Subject: The internet was absolutely essential ...
Date: Sep 06 09:51
Author: Amanda P

in my de-conversion process. Mainly it was just the access to information.

At first, as I began to have doubts, I just started out on just looking at conference talks of Mormon "prophets". But, since their information only goes back to around the late 60's early 70's, I wanted more information about what early leaders said.

So, I did a google search on BY and women and this PowerPoint slide show was linked to that had a whole bunch of quotes on women, many of which were quotes by early Mormon leaders. And I was really shocked and almost couldn't believe what I was reading ... so that led me to want to confirm the primary source material ... which led me to which has Journal of Discourses online.

And from there I ended up at anti sites getting their takes on where to look for the "good stuff" in the Journal of Discourses ... and along the way I also found other things that bothered me. So, after about 2 weeks of collecting a whole bunch of information, I wanted to confirm that the primary source material on the internet was authentic.

So, I then used the internet to look up information about what was available at the Library of Congress and made a trip down there one Saturday. And they didn't have everything I needed there, but they had a huge database that helped me find other libraries near me that had what I was looking for. So, I then used the internet to get information about University of Delaware ... made a phone call there followed by a trip to confirm the rest of the primary sources of interest to me. I actually didn't start posting here until 2-3 months after I left.

Anyway, as you can see, the internet was *essential* in finding the information I needed and assisting me with looking at originals of primary sources. I was completely out of the church within a period of 2 to 3 weeks with the internet where it probably would have taken me years without it ... so thank you Al Gore?

Anyway, that's my story ...

Date: Sep 06 10:29
Author: Got Out For Good
Mail Address:

It use to be that the only information (response) I could get from church leaders was this: "Don't worry about those things. The church is true, that's what matters. Just pray and be obedient and you'll see that everything works out."

What a put down! "Your problems/questions aren't real!" They DON'T have the answers, because the answers scare the hell out of them! Then came the Internet and the world opened up. Not just facts but feelings from hundreds and hundreds of people just like me.

I wasn't alone anymore, and I wasn't uninformed anymore. Thanks to all of you!

Subject: "Just read what we want you to read and...
Date: Sep 06 10:48
Author: FedUp - TDM

don't read anything else." That's how it was for me when I joined the church 20+ years ago. How I wish the internet had been around then! The more websites there are like this the better to inform those that might be duped like I was. If there are any of you that are investigating the church to join and read this please don't be STUPID. I am a TDM (my new term TRUE DISBELIEVING MEMBER) stuck in a life I have HATED for years. I have had leadership callings that took ALL my time, neglecting my family and extended family. I can tell you that the more you do in this church the MORE there is to do. It is NEVER ENOUGH. I now feel that the best years of my life were sucked up by this organization. I intend on getting out, don't know how but I am. Don't let this happen to you!

Subject: Internet gave me the courage to act on my convictions
Date: Sep 06 10:58
Author: Mojo Jojo

As I've described in previous posts, I was a closet doubter for years. Try as I might, I could not get myself to believe. But while I couldn't believe, nor could I take the next step and disbelieve, if that makes sense. For I had been thoroughly brainwashed by Morg head games, and I had allowed the church to manipulate me to the point where I felt extreme guilt and confusion that I couldn't believe, such that I never able to take the next step--active disbelief. I assumed I was the problem, and that if I could fix what was wrong with me, then perhaps I could believe after all. So I held back.

My problems were not BofM anachronisms, BofA, polygamy, or other "big issues." I was aware of them, but they hovered only in the back of my mind. My problem was that my life's experience, my observations of the world around, my attempt to understand the live's of others, their experiences and their beliefs had led me over time to the gradual but firm conviction that the Mormon, and Christian for that matter, world-view simply could not explain what I observed in the world around me. It was spiritually, intellectually, empirically, logically, and unreasonably vacuous. Mormonism left me profoundly disillusioned, frustrated, and unfulfilled. In short, I could not find happiness in a belief system that was so limiting and so ignorant of the richness of experience or to the realities I found in the ordinary lives of the people around me.

I went to general priesthood meeting in the fall of 1999 with my brother in law. Before leaving, we had a dinner for the extended family in which the topic of conversation was, of course and as always, the church. I felt totally alone, alienated, and depressed listening to them talk. They obviously believed. I couldn't. What was wrong with me?

We went to chapel for the broadcast of priesthood meeting. Before it started, I looked around at all the men there, many with their young sons. They (at least the fathers) looked happy as they smiled and talked among themselves. So why was I so miserable? I asked myself what was wrong with me that I could not be like them. Again, I felt alone, alienated, and depressed.

But, something kicked in at that night. Something I had never, ever felt before. I don't know where it came from. The resolution to do something about my alienation from the belief system of my birth.

The next day, I got up earlier than usual, and drove into work. When I arrived, I sat down at my computer, clicked on the browser, went to Google, and typed in exmormon. I found this site, logged on, and read. Within, literally, 10-15 minutes all my doubt was swept away. The realization hit me like a tidal wave: I was not the problem; the church was the problem. All it took for me to experience this profound and life changing epiphany was seeing that there were hundreds, if not thousands, of people out there just like me. I was not alone after all.

I have not looked back since. Although, I still have to live with the fact that my wife and family on both sides are hard-core TBM. But even that's getting better now, at least with my wife and parents, if not with my siblings.

I credit this board, not with nurturing my disbelief, but with showing me people who were like me, who thought like me, who experienced what I had experienced, and who too could not force themselves to believe in something that offended their very sense of reasons, and by showing me these other people, this board gave me the courage to finally overcome Morg programming and act on the power and logic of my convictions.

Thank you RfM!

Subject: I left just as the internet was starting
Date: Sep 06 11:08
Author: Tyler

I didn't know why, but everything about the church felt wrong. I left after reading many books about science, philosophy and other esoteric books about our world. I knew that Mormonism's flat world interpretation would never work for me again.

I had been out of the church one year when I read Michael Quinn's book, "Origins of power" and it blew my mind. I had no idea of the depth and complexity of the Mormon fraud. The internet and this site helped me to see that there were literally thousands of people just like me, changing and awakening out of the dream and fog of Mormonism.

What an irony if a technology the church thinks has sprung forth for the latter day work ends up uncovering the fraud that started Mormonism to millions of people.

What a delicious irony!


Subject: Correction: Internet has been around over 30 years. (off-topic and mostly meant for fellow techies)
Date: Sep 06 22:35
Author: alex

Correction: The Internet has been around over 30 years. I personally first used it in 1981. By the mid 1980s it was in wide use in Computer Science departments all around the USA for academia researchers in that field. I even used the Internet on my mission '90-92 a few times before it was against the rules.

But with MOSAIC the world changed. Suddenly HTML became the standard for displaying and interchanging documents in a graphically-pleasing display with a potential for mass marketability. That's what led to the INTERNET boom of the mid/late 1990s.

But if it will make you feel better. Go pray and ask God. If you feel good that the internet came about in the mid/late 1990s then be happy and pay no attention to worthless facts like the ones I've shared. LOL!!

The next big paradigm shift and technological revolution will be when the network infrastructure is powerful/reliable to support PDA/Internet usage with as much power as PCs have. As soon as the standards develop FIRMLY for a secure, reliable infrastructure that is universally accepted then this market WILL take off like crazy. The problem isn't that we don't have the capability because we've had it for several years now. The problem is that we don't have consensus. But as soon as 90% of consumers will choose to use a reliable PDA device that they can carry with them at all time in their purse or wallet to manage their information and communicate real-time with a network to do everything they can now with their PC then the PDA-Age will be here at last.

BTW cell phones aren't very new. The USA and its allies used them on D-Day in June 1944 to beat back the NAZIs in establishing a firm base of operations in Normandy.

Subject: Correction to your correction.
Date: Sep 06 22:45
Author: steve allen

I was a EE major at the UofU when the 4th node of DARPAnet was installed there. That was in the early 70's. It wasn't the Internet, but it later grew into it (with a stop at being the NSFnet in between).

Subject: Re: How influential was the internet on your decision to leave the Mormon church?
Date: Sep 06 16:11
Author: Wag

I left the church entirely without the help of the internet and without the influence of any anti-Mormon literature. My real question when I left the church had more to do with whether or not there was a god who would answer my prayers. My next question WAS going to be about whether or not the Mormon church was his one true church or not. Since I never got past question one, question two never mattered after that.

For some reason, it never occurred to me to do any research on the Mormons via the internet. It didn't really matter to me anyway. It wasn't until four or maybe even five years later that I stumbled onto this and several other sites and it wasn't the factual, historical research that touched me. It was the stories of other people who had a much rougher time with the church and with exiting it than I did. But I could still relate to them (you, my new friends, actually! :-> ) so I kept reading and started posting.

Now, I find that you are all very good people and that I can count you all as friends. I've met a great many of you and I look forward to meeting more of you, especially in October!


Subject: None, did it before the Internet.
Date: Sep 06 16:14
Author: steve allen

I was very much doubting and then I bought the Tanners' book "Mormonism: Shadow or Reality" and that finished the deal since it made me realize all the lie I was taught in seminary & church.

Subject: Not at all. . .
Date: Sep 06 16:15
Author: catholicgirl

The Internet didn't exist (nor did personal computers) when I left the LDS Church.

Fortunately, the printing press did.

Subject: Had it been around when I was doing my re-evaluation of the Mormon faith, I'm sure it would have provided a wealth of valuable information, upon which to base a considered judgment . . .
Date: Sep 06 16:18
Author: steve benson

But since it wasn't, I had to spend hundreds of dollars on old fashioned books. Damn.

Subject: The Internet was a tool, but not the only one
Date: Sep 06 16:20
Author: Makurosu

My climb from the Mormon pit of despair was made possible by books. Well, that and also the fact that Mormonism was defective and didn't operate as advertised. The Internet led me to the right books. It also led me here, but only after I was effectively out of the Church.

Subject: My life experiences were telling me it wasn't true but
Date: Sep 06 16:35
Author: BTDT

I don't know if I would have listened and/or believed my own intuition. Due to the internet I was able to justify my feelings. I didn't look up stuff on the internet until after doubts started, and the info I learned gave me the courage to leave.

Subject: I left the church twenty five years before I found this site, but
Date: Sep 06 17:24
Author: melissa

finding this site has given me wider understanding and a feeling of joy and validation I didn't have before, even during years when I never gave the church a second (conscious) thought. I really cherish the stories I read here. Also the insights.

Subject: The Internet gave me access and direction to info that put the final nail in the coffin
Date: Sep 06 17:54
Author: SusieQ#1

Without the Internet (this site and Dr. Shades and lds-mormon- rpcman -- and others) I would still be trying to ignore the red flags and trying to figure out why Mormonism did not add up.

It only took a couple of sentences, realizing that Joseph Smith Jr. could not possibly have had discovered what he claimed, (including that silly BOA nonsense- what an embarrassment) back in late 1998, and the gig was up -- and I have been chuckling, giggling and laughing ever since.

Ooopsy -- Internet foiled Mormonism for anyone who is willing to ignore the stench of the garage they spew and take the blinders off and think rationally and reasonably.

I still can't get over how programmed the typical TBM is -- cognitive dissonance was clanging away in my ears for years and years -- but apparently the TBM is tone deaf!

I have to laugh at how the teachings of the Mormon Church has backfired.... they talk about seeking out the best books, etc. (ah la 13th Article of Faith-if there is anything virtuous, lovely or of good report, or praiseworthy, we seek after these things!), claim that either it is the truth, or false, the Internet was inspired for these latter-days, and here we are, reading their own original ones sans whitewashing -- and bingo --- FALSE, FRAUD, HOAX ---- all red flags are down, red lights stopped flashing and it's a GO! OUT OF THE DOOR!!!! It is just too funny!

Yeppers, the Internet was the primary source (pointed me right to the references in our own Mormon home library!) and support for my happy exit from Mormonism and the reason I sent in my formal resignation which resulted in my confirmation of my membership being canceled dated: JUNE 27, 2002! June 27th -- How Perfect! Now I can celebrate my resignation and Joseph Smith's death at the shoot out! I couldn't have planned it better.

My guess is that the Internet is reducing the membership of the Mormon Church by about 10% a month! :-)

Subject: Re: How influential was the internet on your decision to leave the Mormon church?
Date: Sep 06 20:27
Author: ianhusford

I was on my way out when I discovered this site. It just helped me understand more my feelings towards the church. It also helped me get rid of my guilt feelings.

I am now much happier than I was five years ago even though I had some major setbacks. I am moving on in my life and returning to school for retraining.

I want to bear my testymonkey that this sight has saved me from constant thoughts of suicide. It has helped me come out of my shell. OK..bearing testymonkey...bad. Rarely thinking of suicide now...priceless.


Subject: 50% answered prayer 50% this very website.... it liberated me !!!!! Ya Baby 

but it has helped confirm I made the right decision.
Subject: How influential was the internet on your decision to leave the Mormon church? (continued from closed thread)
Date: Sep 07 02:51
Author: mind

I left the church long before the Internet was around. What influenced me to leave was utter disbelief in the church. The mystery for me as always been, how on Earth does a person get a testimony? What's the trick? I never figured out how to trick myself into believing.

I grew up in a strict Gestapo Mormon house. (notice I didn't use the word home). Lord knows how much I wanted to have the guts to challenge my family to admit the truth, that we are all just joking about this. But something told me I'd better not because they really are serious. Somehow they managed to effortlessly trick themselves into the required testimony.

I stopped all church activity the day I left home. Years later I noticed a book at a yard sale by Jerald and Sandra Tanner called The Changing World of Mormonism. I bought it for a dollar. When I got home I started reading and found I couldn't put it down.

I thought this was incredible, the Tanners have brass balls. I admired their courage and intellect and integrity. I'd never actually spoken to anyone with the courage the Tanners had displayed. I wanted to establish contact for the trill of hearing the voice of someone truly courageous. I got the number of the ministry and called just so I could talk with someone of truth and courage. I had a short and pleasant conversation with Sandra. I complimented her on the book and she offered to put me on the mailing list.

After that day, every few months one of their newsletters would arrive in the mail. I would stop everything I was planning with my time, if possible, just to read the newsletter cover to cover. I'd feel disappointed that there wasn't more info. Eventually, I started ordering books. I discovered through this process that I actually have a real interest in reading truth about Mormonism.

In 1995, I discovered sites about Mormonism. I remember thinking: This is going to cause problems for the church. It wants to control information and the Internet is going to be impossible for the church to control. It will have to live with the Internet and all the truth that gets published.

I was very interested in learning just how much effect this powerful information source will have on the church. So far I must say - I think its had a lot of influence.

It should seem odd that a person who really dislikes the church would find a strong interest in learning and knowing more about a subject he wished didn't even exist. Apparently, I'm not alone.

Subject: Re: How influential was the internet on your decision to leave the Mormon church? (continued from closed thread)
Date: Sep 07 04:53
Author: Gatpomb

The internet definitely started me toward my decision on leaving the LDS church. I have told my story before, so I will just condense it.

I was looking up information for a writing project I was doing. I happened to run across a book about Freemason's. Since I had been in the temple pre-change from the Masonic rituals, I was shocked to be reading about the "most sacred ceremonies" I was put through, here in this book written years before Joseph Smith was born. That's what got me on the road to recovery.


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