So, I left Mormonism many years ago, for various reasons. I got hurt by the actions of my ex hubby, and then by the supposed leaders of the church who just let him get away with it, and actually instructed me to forgive him. It was me who was wrong, because I didn't immediately just forgive, forgive, forgive.. time and time again.

 

Of course, this lead me to anguish! I remember being in the CR on my knees, praying and begging God to lighten my burdens, to soften my heart, to help me find a way to forgive that rotten, cheating, filthy. B#$#$tard. I beat myself up for my "unwillingness" to just let him off the hook. This happened over and over for years!

 

I kept blaming myself!  The church of course did not give me any other choice. I either had to hearken unto the priesthood, or I was unworthy and rebellious. They actually took MY temple recommend away, not his, because I was not listening to God in the way they thought I should be, simply because I was not getting the same answers that they wanted me to be getting.. Go figure!

 

I finally decided that unless I could find a way to accept his teachings, I would be lost. So I began a rigorous "education" regimen. I decided I would study myself into submission! Uh Oh, bad decision! With the blessings of my hubby and my Bishop, I began to take seminary with my teenage children (I was a convert, and never took seminary), I would then meet with my bishops wife to study some more. I would then leave and go to the temple to sleep..... er I mean to study some more in my thoughts and prayers in the house of the lord!  I did this faithfully for months and months. The lightbulb that was supposed to begin flashing in my brain just remained unlit. Still must be me right?  Because this was the truth right? I was just being tested right? I just had to keep hanging onto the iron rod...and at some point God would say "that will do!"

 

Along came the Internet.. the tool of Satan, or so I have been told by leaders of the church.(funny how many members use it to the betterment of themselves, but I was using it as a tool of Satan???)  Suddenly there was a whole world of information at my finger tips. Opinions that were not only contrary to what I had been told, but downright opposed to the teachings I had had shoved down my throat for years!  Wait a minute.. what is that??  Egads, that is hurting my eyes.. what is it???? OMG  A LIGHTBULB!! One huge, flashing, strobbing, all encompasing LIGHT!!  My eyes have never recovered from the sight, the beautiful sight of the truth!

 

What do you mean I am worthy? What do you mean that I am not the cause of my families demise? How can he be wrong, he holds the priesthood, and I am just a lowly second wife??  Wait a minute, the church does not practice Polygamy any longer, so how can he still be married to his first wife if he is sealed to me?? Oh yeah, we don't talk about that do we!   JS married a 14 year old? His stepdaughter?  that is not only wrong on many levels, that is downright disgusting!  No scientific proof of Barley and Elephants? How can Chariots be pulled without horses? Blood Oaths? Blacks being unworthy, then suddenly being ok ( but of course that had nothing to do with the laws of desegregation right? just a coincdent).

 

Hmmmm, why did I feel peace now? why did I feel forgiven and loved now?  How come the warm burning didn't happen now? but I was ok somehow with that. Why did it no longer matter to me that I did not need to have confirmation of God's existence, of his love for me, because that is what would make me feel worthy, validated, a child of a loving parent... Why is my own love suddenly enough? why does stopping beating myself up feel so good??

 

How wonderful it felt to stand in front of the Bishop and tell him under no uncertain terms that NO! I would not take on the sins of my husband! He as responsible for his actions, always had been, always will be... and that I am done!  The only forgiveness that is going to happen around here is forgiveness towards myself!  NO!  I will not think about my decisions, and their eternal consequences, because there is not such thing! Families can be together, in this life time, in all our inperfections and our glory.. for here and now!  You can't take my children away from me for time and all eternity, if there is no such thing!  As a child I was severly abused by my father ( another story, another time) and the concept of a Loving Heavenly Father was so hard to stomach for me all these years, I used to blame it on the fact that I had no idea what a loving father was like, but now  I just finally realized that God is just a myth. I take full responsibilty for my actions. I am free to make my choices, good or bad, but that i am the one who must take any fallout by those actions. No one died for my sins, no one  but me is responsible for my own forgiveness.

 

How freeing it is to suddenly understand the bad things that happen in this world are just that, Bad things. I was not a bad child, what my dad did was on him. I no longer blame myself for anything that happened to me by his hands, but nor can I use it as an excuse for my actions now.  We as humans are fallible, we are capable of all kinds of crimes against each other, but we are also capable of great deeds, great love, great..... great.... great.... things! We are only limited by ourselves.

 

I moved on with my life. Got a divorce, from both my ex, and the church. Met and married a wonderful moral man who was raised Atheist. I asked him the other day what it was like to have never had any concept of God in his life. He stated, it just means that I have always known I am accountable for my actions, and can blame no one else, nor does anyone else get credit for my good deeds.

 

So, why after all these years, am I back immersed in the Mormon issue?  Why am I suddenly driven to read, to study, to confirm my discoveries of years gone by? Polygamy... what a crock.. Temple ceremonies, how boring, how stupid, how wasteful of my time.. Priesthood.. Whatever.. God... Who?? I have found nothing to change the conclusions I came to years ago, so why am I just now seeking out POMO companionship? I don't need your validation, I don't feel that that is what I am seeking. I have thought about it alot these last few days. Spent some time on an atheist site, didn't really fit in there, talked to my hubby, and he though supportive, just doesn't understand where I am coming from...

 

And then I got it! I was reading a letter someone wrote on another site, about how hard it is to leave Mormonism, that it is a cult, that there is brainwashing going on..etc etc etc... and I realized that while the intellectual part of me had moved on, there was a secret little dark spot in my mind that still says... what if I am wrong??

 

That is why I am here...you guys understand that still small voice!  My questions for you all is.. how do you tell it to "shut the F&$)#& up!"?  I want my whole mind to be sound, of one opinion. Perhaps here is the only place I will find anyone who understand what I am saying. "you are not alone" is what I need... Can you help? Will you help?

 

Rally

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Thanks for sharing your experiences and journey out of Mormonism. As to the small, repetitive voice of "what if I'm wrong", any time it comes up, just repeat right back to it all of the crap that you now know exists in Mormon history that makes it absurd for such an organization to be God's presence on Earth. The quicker you subdue the "what if I'm wrong" voice with "there's no fucking way in hell that it is true, and even if it were, there's not a damn thing I would want to go to their heaven for" etc. Good luck! Thanks for joining and welcome again to the site!
Thank you for sharing. My still-Mormon friends have been dropping me like a hot potato, accusing me of being a flaming anti-Mormon, trying to bring down the Church.

I tell them that I am not anti-Mormon. I am ex-Mormon. I am on support sites. Not sites designed to bring down the Church. I tell them that they don't have a right to tell me that I should just shut up and move on with my life. I tell them that I have a right to seek the support of those who understand where I have been, and the struggle to find a direction to go in.

The truth is that no people on this planet will ever understand us like we understand each other. I believe that's why we seek each other out. We're the only people who understand what this struggle is like and no one can tell us that we have no right to seek out that support system.
Thanks for sharing your story. I LOVE how strong-willed you are! I think its important for everyone exiting Mormonism to realize that, contrary to what we have consistently been inculcated to believe, the world is not composed of "Mormons" and "Non-Mormons". Its not "members of the only true Church" and "the world".

The world is made up of diverse groups of people who have many different approaches to life, spirituality, personal growth and development.

I would say keep living the maxim "stubbornness is a virtue, pigheadedness is a vice" , follow your own inner compass and sense of what's healthy (not the fear-based Mormon authority voice in your head), and welcome to your new life outside the cult! (applause)
Well said Kerry! I was thinking you must have read Eckhart Tolle or other similar works and then you mentioned that you had. I really enjoyed and resonated with Eckhart Tolle's "The Power of Now" and "A New Earth". I'll 2nd this recommended reading. What has Jim Carey written or where can I listen to his stuff?
I think there should be a 12-step program for exmos, its kind of like getting over an addiction.
Kerry says it so well. Thanks for sharing your story. It probably hits close to home for most of us, but especially the female of us who struggled with the notion that we were the followers and not the leaders. I have felt that was wrong since I was a child but didn't know how to express it, nor did I dare at the time. I now live in the moment more and more and feel so much peace when I am able to do so. When negative thoughts of the past creep in, I don't stuff them away. I step back and examine them for what they really are, past events that have led me to the place I am now. It is a good place and I intend to stay here. There is no starting or stopping, only doing.

Namaste
Here is some music that I still play when I feel down. I had a good friend that helped me as I regained my life. He played this for me and a lightbulb went on.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3c2xDY7fp8c&feature=fvw

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