Mother Who Knows
Date: February 12, 2018 06:17AM
Nightingale, I could really relate to your posts, as a single divorcee. Also, the "converts" in our ward were treated just like you were. Everyone made a big fuss over them, until they joined, and then they were ignored, as the "member missionary-types" moved on to someone else. Members got a lot of credit and prestige out of converting someone. The "converts" (I hate calling them that, because they are members, just like everyone else) would seek out us singles, because we were friendlier, and weren't part of the clique of married couples climbing the latter-day ladder.
Yes, the singles always sat in the same place, in the back of the chapel. Almost every Sunday, someone would announce from the pulpit that we were supposed to sit with our family. This rule was quite strictly enforced. It was the Mormons' backhanded way of saying that single people were to sit alone.
Mormon wives were always accusing us of flirting with their husbands, so we didn't dare sit by or talk to anyone. Some of the men actually tried to hit on us, and we would compare notes. Thank God for my single friends in the ward! We couldn't have been more repelled by the Mormon husbands--ick!
It got to be a joke to us, though, because the widows thought of themselves as above us divorced people. So, we had a widows' section, and a divorcees' section, on opposite sides, in the back. I got to sit on the stand, because I was the organist--LOL.
Nightingale did a good job of describing the feeling of awkward loneliness at a ward party. My children did not like our new ward in Utah (they never believed the JS story, or that we were inferior because we were not sealed in the temple, and all that other elitist garbage), and they didn't want to go to the ward parties, any more than they wanted to go to church. I did force them to go to a few, but they had closer friends outside the church, and so did I. We were also younger than most of our neighbors, and cliques had been developed years before we arrived. My kids had greater insight than I, and they were friendly, good looking, good students, good athletes, and were kind to others, which made them well-accepted at school. Because we were basically kind, we didn't relate to Mormon gossips and manipulators. We didn't like lies, elitism, sexism, and racism. We had lived in California, with friends of all religions and races. Though we didn't like being marginalized--it did hurt our feelings--we didn't really want to be part of the club, in the first place.
Sitting in the back with the other kids from "broken homes", enabled my kids to ditch out of meeting, unnoticed. Several times, if my boys overslept on Sunday mornings, the priesthood leaders would break into our house and wake them up, and kick and shove them to church--I already told that story.
It was less painful for us to just resign, altogether. Mormons are meaner to each other, than they are to ex-Mormons or other outsiders.
Deanie, the Dreaded Single Adult had some interesting stories to tell. I thought our ward was the only ward with the singles on the back row, until I came to RFM.