Date: January 23, 2014 04:07PM
I was born in 1987, on the living room floor of our house in Provo, Utah. I was number 4 for my parents, who had met at BYU in 1980 and proceeded to get married within months of their meeting. My father was 21, my mother 18. My father had just returned from a mission in Japan and Korea.
My mother grew up completely Mormon. Through her, we go back to the Walker's in England coming over to Utah at Mormonism's beginning. Her parents moved to Missouri in the 70's with the expectaction of Jesus returning any day-- they are still there.
Even at a young age, I could tell that my parents didn't have a real love for each other. I always pictured them as Kermit and Miss Piggy-- Kermy being somewhat indifferent, and Miss Piggy trying so very hard for his love. We were your standard Mormon family-- living in a little town in Utah with my father bringing home the dough and my mother staying at home and raising the children. We didn't seem so poor, my father had a decent job and was in the military as well.
In 1996 my father decided he was done with his marriage. I was 9 years old, and he left in the night-- all the older siblings having a discussion before he left, while I was asleep. My mother was pregnant with her 6th, me having a little brother who was just over 1.
My mother quickly turned to her parents. She had only completed one semester of college before getting married and following the Mormon plan. We moved to her parents house in Missouri for support. My grandfather was verbally and physically abusive, my grandmother very much verbally abusive as well. They would listen to our phone calls from my father. They would open any packages he sent to us and take out any gifts or money he had sent to us. My father had quickly moved to Japan where he married his 2nd wife, a japanese woman he had converted on his mission years ago.
My mother went back to school, and I spent the next few years of my life being a second mother to my little brother's. They saw me more than they did her.
My father is and remains an amazing father. His love for his kids has influenced every choice made in his life, and I was very much a daddy's girl. He always paid his child support in full-- at one point living in his car and working as a telephone sales operator so that he could make sure his kids were provided for. My mother was always very vindictive and constantly accused my father of not paying his due, and there was much animosity between them, especially in the first few years.
It was 3 years before my mother found someone to remarry. She got a temple divorce from my father, and proceeded to marry a man she had known for a few months in the temple. He was a nice enough man, but someone none of us kids knew. We proceeded to move into his dillapidated trailer with his 4 kids and himself quickly after the marriage, I was 12 years old.
His trailer was the stuff of nightmare's. He had been raising his children alone for quite some time. I remember they had a wall designated for spitting contests. His children (the youngest a girl of 16, the older 3 boys in their 20's) would wrestle and lick and blow on eachother's necks. They had a room designated for the many stray cats that they took in to poop in. You could see the flees jumping from the couch. My bedroom that I shared with my sister had no door, and the eldest of my new step-dad's sons was mentally handicapped. He never progessed past the age of 9, but very much had an adult man's body and urgings. He would walk past our curtained door and move the curtain just to take a quick look, then keep walking. Traumatic, to say the least.
We only lasted there 3 months before my new step-father got evicted. We proceeded to move to a 3 bedroom 1 bathroom home, with a total of 12 people.
My step father has had one job since I've known him-- and that only for a few year period in my teens. He was a school bus driver. He became the Bishop of our little branch in a little town in Missouri in the early 2000's. He and his children subsisted off of my mother's income and the child support given by my father primarily. We were very poor.
Slowly, the older children trickled out. My older siblings and I always wanted the chance to live with our father, but we were never given the choice. There were a few court cases in which my older brothers got out-- both at the age of 17. Once they were living with my father, my mother considered their apostacy from the church his doing-- although my father was still very much a believer until about 2005 or so.
There was a time when my mother started taking my little brother's to a church therapist-- my brothers being 9 and 11 years old. At this therapist, they proceeded to tell stories of my older brothers abusing them. Trying to force feed them shoving forks down their throats, and at one point the older of the 2 told the therapist that my eldest brother chased them around with a chainsaw. These were all blatant lies, my older brothers having your standard teasing and sometimes hurtful antics. My mother took my father and older brother's to court on these matters, trying to cut off my older part of the family and my father completely-- based on what 2 little boys said to a church appointed therapist. Keep in mind that all growing up we were very much aware of my mother's hatred of my father, and these little boys had spent next to no time with him-- he living either out of the country or state's away for almost their entire lives. In the end, my father's rights were not taken away. My mother's relationship with my 2 older brothers remains terrible. Our family is broken.
My step-father got accused of molesting a 12 year old boy when I was a junior in high school. He was currently serving as the Branch President when he was accused. My step father would fall asleep on the lower bunk of my little brother's beds while reading to them at night, in just his garments. This alone is real stupidity. There was a boy who's mother joined the church while my step-father was serving as the President, and his mother seemed to encourage him coming to our home. He was friends with my little brother's, and seemed to think of my step-father as a father figure. (This kid was a little shit, by-the-way. There was a time when he put a big kitchen knife under the door while I was showering, and I just thought it was kid meddling. Turns out, when I opened the door he had been masturbating to the image he could see in the knife. I was no fan of this kid.) Apparantly, their was the accuser boys semen on my step father's hand. He went to jail, was excommunicated, and awaited trial. Once he was released from jail and was awaiting trial, he stayed at my grandparents since he wasn't allowed to stay in the same house as my little brothers.
He was acquitted after trial. The accusing mother is a bit of a psycho, and I'm not exactly sure how the trial went, to be honest. I know that somehow they brought me up, because I ran away while all this was going on-- used me as further evidence against my step father. To be honest with you, I believe he is innocent. He had recently taken away the accusing mother's temple recommend because she was just awful to her children, and I think that the little boy had a wet dream. Maybe that's just me hoping that the man who raised my little brother's from toddlerhood isn't a child predator-- for that is terrifying above all else. My brother's are now 17 and 19, and there has yet been anything said by them as to my step-father approaching them in any way unappropriate. Oh how I hope that those boys were untouched, for I was the last link to their real family and sanity, and I left them in that house at 17, and hear is part of why I ran.
So from all this you can tell, we were very poor. I always did well in school, academically and socially. We moved a lot during my middle and high school years, and became adept at making friends. In my junior year of high school, I got nominated as Homecoming Queen. This was a major shock to me, considering I wasn't one of the richer popular crowd, and was relatively new to my high school. It was a triumph for me, when I won the candidacy for the Juniors. I got to be royalty, in a little town where football was a huge deal.
I told my mother of my nomination, and naturally she was excited for me. She used it as a chance for me to tout my mormonism. She and my seminary teacher preceeded to dress me in my seminary teacher's older daughter's retired prom dress. The dress was a size 12, I was a size 4. The dress was atrocious as it was, but monstrously big for me. I told them I loved it so, and that I would wear it-- knowing full well that I wouldn't be seen in that-- this was my moment of glory, and my chance to feel beautiful in front of my peers who voted me as their choice. I bought a dress from the local mall with my hard earned money (waitressing) and figured my mom wouldn't go to the school before the game to see us announced and me in my immodest dress.
Wrong. The dress was a beautiful teal color, beading, didn't even show cleavage, but was speghetti strap and showed a good portion of my back. I had a friend do my hair, and I was the happiest I had ever been in my high school career. While walking with the Prince to our chairs in front of everyone for the pep rally, I saw my mother. She was livid, to say the least. I sat in my chair in terror the whole assembly, and immediately lost my self in the swarm of people after to avoid my mother. She tracked me at the homecoming game. She ripped me off the field in front of most the town, while I was arm-in-arm with my prince. She took me home, locked me in my room, trashed my dress, called me a whore, and said what a terrible example I was in front of our entire town.
Said that I made the Mormon's look terrible, with my beautiful back on display.
It was fun explaining to my mom that if anything-- her behavior is what was going to look bad. My friends already thought my mother was crazy as it was-- now all the town were convinced we were nuts.
I ran away only a few weeks after that. Also in my high school I started taking addarall pretty heavily, got very much into alcohol, got very sexually curious (didn't lose virginity til 17, but I sure did some other things.) I was a lost girl. I didn't believe what was supposed to be my entire way of life and my plan for salvation. I had doubts at age 12, but by the time I was taking seminary-- I knew I was out. The more I learned about the church, the more it didn't make sense to me. I would be the one asking uncomfortable questions. My seminary teacher actually bribed my little brother's with ice cream and scripture stickers if they would wake me up in the morning and harass me to go to seminary. They made me seminary president in the hope's to get me more faithful. I would go, but I would often smoke a joint by the big satellite outside the church before hand.
I don't know if I can blame Mormonism really for my rough upbringing. I know that the decisions my mom made that were detrimental to me growing up, seemed to stem from her strong beliefs. I know that I can't get over it, I am still very bitter-- especially seeing my little brother's who I partly raised very much taken in and fooled. The oldest of my little brother's is convinced he has visions, and that one day he will be the Prophet. I also think he shows signs of homosexuality, which can only lead to self-hate and unhappiness if he continues on the path he is on. I love my mother. I know that she gets upset since I am not going to be with her forever, and that she blames herself for me leaving. I left, because it's wrong. I have immersed myself in learning about Mormon history, and the more you find out, the more it makes you sad to see your loved ones wasting their lives.