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Posted by: forgotmyname ( )
Date: August 06, 2019 06:55PM


Like many of you, I grew up under the "always strive to be perfect" influence of the Mormon church. Long story short, while leaving the actual religion was not difficult for me, extricating myself from the deeply ingrained cultural influences (shame, guilt, less-than, etc.) has been more difficult.

I saw a therapist for a couple of years, and that helped tremendously. But every now and then, life/society triggers something in me, and I relapse. I guess today -- if I'm being honest, the last month -- is a relapse.

The therapist has given me great tools, and I re-read some of them today. I'm working on it. I guess maybe I just need to know right now that I'm not alone, and that a relapse day is not the end of the world. Maybe we can all lift each other up a little together.

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Posted by: forgotmyname ( )
Date: August 06, 2019 06:59PM

The worst part isn't how I feel about myself, it's how I treat others when I'm feeling like this. I'm so critical of others, and impatient when they're less than perfect. I take out my feelings of less-than on others. It's not right, and it tends to take me a while before I recognize that's what I'm doing.

Another sigh.

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Posted by: babyloncansuckit ( )
Date: August 07, 2019 07:13AM

Start working out. Take care of your body like it was your newborn baby. Go for long walks in nature and mentally reach out to the trees, thanking them. Join a Brazilian jiu-jitsu club and get your butt kicked until you can do the same.

Be grateful for everything. Thank the Universe for the tribulations that made you. Don’t think that others have it made. They all have their own problems. It’s how life molds them.

Choose to be here. Say it out loud so your body hears it. There’s only one you. Do you have a better place to be than “now”?

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Posted by: presleynfactsrock ( )
Date: August 07, 2019 08:03PM

The indoctrination of the cult sinks its teeth deep into a member's psyche which means it usually takes much time and some relapses to move away from its grip. Hang in there. I think you are on the right track and give yourself kudos for trying, even if you relapse. Change takes time, especially when you are changing a lifestyle that was drilled into you. Oh, and it might be helpful to read up on cults and the power they have. I know it was for me.

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Posted by: exminion ( )
Date: August 08, 2019 07:55PM

I know what you mean. I always felt like "nothing." By priesthood-holding older brothers used to call me a "skinny little nothing." My parents and other Mormon testimony bearers used to say, "I would be nothing, if it weren't for The Church."

In high school I never FELT good enough, or popular enough. Nothing I did made any difference to how I was labeled by my TBM family. My father was a graduate of an ivy league university, but I failed to get into it. I was called a "failure," but no one mentioned the fact that I had taken an opportunity to study in Europe, and had lost a semester of high school credits.

In high school, I was a cheerleader and prom queen, won the talent show, had the lead in the class play, and had a lot of friends--yet, I was condemned in the ward YW, and by my parents, because I wasn't CONVERTING these friends. In those days, it was "every member a missionary," and I was failing, yet again.

I suspect, Forgotmyname, that you are not at all "less than," IRL. Stripping members of their self esteem, taking away their right to think and ask questions, making them feel inadequate and child-like--all these are manipulative ploys to keep members submissive and obedient.

I found some high school and college photos, awards, and art work, stuffed in to a suitcase in the back of my parents' attic. I was amazed at my achievements, because they had never been acknowledged by my parents, and I had forgotten them, as I had been pushed lower and lower on the Mormon social ladder as a single girl over 21, an unmarried singe adult, a divorced woman, a dreaded older single adult, then a twice-divorced single working mother. Worse than a "nothing," I was an embarrassment to my TBM family, and a hopeless failure.

I had to ask my mother, "Why didn't you go to my plays and recitals, like you went to my brothers' games? "Why didn't you congratulate me, or reward me for my achievements?"

My TBM mother said, "We didn't want you to become overconfident. That's just the way we (the Mormons) raised children, in those days."

If it makes you feel any better, it was nothing personal. Most of the rest of us Mormons were raised that way, too.

Leaving the cult was very beneficial for me and my family. The initial rejection and shunning made me feel very bad, when we first left--until I realized that my children and I had been treated far WORSE when we were Mormons.

I became more positive, hard-working, and independent. I was confident enough to try, when the TBM's said I would fail. I supported my children, alone, and my children helped, when they got older. They all graduated from the university, have great careers, nice families of their own, and are happy and loving. I could never look on any of them as failures, or think of any of us as "nothing", now.

You will get over this! You are doing great. Keep working. In any kind of therapy, there are usually set-backs, but they become fewer and farther between, and don't last as long. Those negative, discouraging Mormon voices are coming from outside of your self, so just refuse to internalize them. Mormons are liars! In ways more harmful than mythological history or threatening scriptures. Knowledge is helpful, and one poster suggested reading about cults. Read about brainwashing. Find out if you have "triggers", that create flashbacks from your past. You might have a touch of PTSD, depending on how bad it was for you, having been raised in a cult.

The Mormon cult has tried to suck our very soul. Allow yourself a few setbacks, now and then. You are a hero for saving yourself.

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Posted by: Amyjo ( )
Date: August 08, 2019 08:18PM

In addition to what babylon suggests with exercise, and being kind to yourself, make more time to rest, eat right, and being in the moment for yourself and the ones you love. Cherish your children if you have them, your spouse, yourself, your family if you are in relationship with them.

Be gentle with yourself. Practice patience. You are going to have good days with some bad, and there will be uphill climbs.

Look for the best in all situations. Be your own best friend.

I still pray after leaving Mormonism. I didn't give up on my faith, it is what helped me get through. God needed to pull the rug out from under my feet of that religion so I could find for myself that he was still there for me after it was gone from my life. Only better than before, because there was no longer the institution of that religious cult standing between me and my relation to my Creator that had been there before. Mormonism was a mirage built on a fantasy. My faith, like my Creator, was bigger and stronger and had a different foundation than that but I had to learn it for myself.

Finding your center again after Mormonism. You will, it is there, it was there all along. Mormonism stole our identity in a way. In our post-Mormon lives we are re-claiming it back. It is yours to own. What makes you unique. Your god given talents. Who you are there is no one else like you in the universe. And we don't need to be reminded that we're not perfect enough, because we are good enough just as we are.

Hugs and hopes for you that you find your peace with leaving and regain your purpose and self-confidence.

You also may want to check with your physician if you struggle with depression, because it is treatable. You don't need to see a psychiatrist for medication anymore like people did 30-40 years ago. Your doctor can order a script for anti-depressant and there are so many available today that you should be able to tailor one just right for you if depression is something you suffer from. Medicine is there for the asking. It is nothing to be ashamed of or to feel stigmatized about.

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Posted by: Dr. No ( )
Date: August 09, 2019 03:01PM

is to realize this self-esteem thing is only in the head. It requires our buy-in. It is only as real as we make it.

Has three components:

1. Concept that there is a "self" - idea of self. Cat has no concept of self; the ugliest cat on earth will have no self-esteem issues.

2. Buy-in of a standard "out there" - that somewhere is a ruler, a yardstick, by which I am judged. We can only be judged by a standard we accept. Completely made up -- arbitrary. Look closely. Some judge themselves severely by the size of their stamp (or other thing) collection.

3. Comparison of this idea of "self" to the idea of some "standard." There is the impulse to compare - which does not have to be. It is not necessary.

Upon this triad rests "self-esteem;" modulating any one of these affects the whole. Even seeing the artificiality of it all is liberating. It's a dream. Only as real as I make it.

Doesn't have a self-esteem problem, lol. Some would say he should!

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