Because I am still on that long road out, I have to term my story as in progress.
BIC in Utah county, I grew up in the Church, knew nothing but the Church, and was so awash in it that my sensibilities gave away to temptations of the flesh in high school and I was drawn to the forbidden. I ended up not serving a mission, for altruistic reasons as I really did not have a testimony and felt like it would be a waste of my time and my parents money, not to mention offensive to those I would try to teach in the field. This was before the "raising of the bar" thing, so even with my sins the bishop waved them away and tried to get me in the field.
I spent my 18 through 22 years at the University of Utah where I finished a degree in economics and eventually found enough reasons in my life to venture back towards Church activity. I met my wife shortly thereafter and we were married in the temple - I was back on the right track!
15 years later I had stumbled through life as a saint with a few hangups and hiccups, but I tried hard to do the right thing and be the father and member that I was expected to be. At age 37 I was called into the Bishopric and that caused me to commit. I was either going to truly learn all I could about the gospel and be the kind of guy that is in the Bishopric, or I was going to die trying. Guess I died.
I dove into as much Church history and literature as I could, in order to be a better Mormon. I suddenly found out that my Church was nothing like the Church I thought I was in. Church history became the agent of doubt and questions and I ran through Bushman, Compton, Quinn, Arrington, Palmer, Bagley, Brooks... the list goes on and on but the faith I once had was completely shattered.
A strange but quick fascination in talking with the apologists proved the final straw, as their "answers" pulverized what faith I had left. I asked for a release from my calling 6 months ago and much to their
credit, I had very good, loving, and understand leaders in the ward and
stake that did not judge and wished me well on my journey to find
answers. I very much respect them for the way they handled my situation.
And now I am in outer darkness. Virtually alone in my community and family of TBM's, with a wife who is ever faithful to her Church, I am straddling the fence most days and it's really, really hard. I try to be supportive as a husband, and I have found good friends at NOM and CALM of Utah County. But it's still really, really hard. I suppose it would be easier if I knew where it would all end, how the story would resolve itself, but right now it's a huge mystery.
Oh... and I really love coffee. Guess I was doomed for apostasy.