I've always known in the back of my mind, something was not right in the church I was growing up in. By the time I was 14 or 15, I knew it wasn't right. I had done extensive research, even at that age, because of the utmost importance it held do me. You know, it's a huge part of your life.
As a woman, I felt oppressed. I knew if there were a God, he would not want me to feel so oppressed and unequal. One of the biggest turning points of many had to be when, in YW, you had to do those projects. Can't quite remember what they were called, but you had to put 10 hours into some sort of project to present. Anyway, all the girls were making quilts, putting together cook books, pretty much doing a lot of domestic stuff. I was definitely not that type of girl, I decided to go with an science-based project. I made this whole thing that created a funnel system out of water steam, and wrote a report about meteorology. It really didn't please my YW leaders, but I had worked so hard on it and was very proud of it.
My presentation was going to be about the importance of education for success. In order to compromise with them, I had to re-do my presentation to be about education, but to focus on the fact that women were to be nurturers, raise families, and be a general homemaker... however, a woman's education is important just in case there were some situation, like being widowed, where the mother had to provide. That is, until, she found another suitable companion.
Now, I'm at the age of 20 and married. I am repulsed by the idea of any organized religion. My husband is LDS, but had been inactive. He grew up in Orem, UT, and hated the fact that judging others seemed to be a hobby of LDS members, especially in Utah. I know he still believes it, though.
Despite the amount of time passed that I came to realize the falseness of the church, I still have yet to even let anyone know. I feel sooo scared. When I was a teen, any questioning of the church meant a huge punishment in my family. Of course I made the mistake of letting them know my findings, and it was met with much reprimand to the point of abuse. My mother was a hardcore alcoholic, she'd come home 3am and kick me out of the house, half dressed, sometimes in horrible weather because of my lack of faith. Huge hypocrisy, I know, but in her eyes I was the bad one. The rest of my family reacted in less extreme ways, but still I found myself being cut off from people. It was really traumatizing.
Now I feel like I'm facing even more judgement. I want to be free to express my beliefs so bad, but not only do I have my family to worry about, I have my husband's family too. They are super critical of me already and I think it's because they know I don't go to church. My mother in law hates my guts without even getting to know me. I hate her yet I always want to please her. Why? She calls me such rude things that always seem to get back to me. She thinks I'm white trash because I'm from Idaho. She refused to invite any of his family to our wedding and none of his family came. I just lost my job recently, and instead of asking me if I'm ok, she calls hubby and tells him to come back home like I just ruined our marriage. Hubby of course still treats me like the world, he's the best thing that's come into my life and is a positive influence on me. But still, I'm afraid if I tell him I no longer want to associate with the church, it will ruin us. I feel like he has been brain washed in a way, he won't open his mind up to anything else and I feel like he resents the fact that I don't like religion.
I'm so terrified of judgement because of the church, it was such a common occurrence with family, church members, bishops, etc. It has had a long lasting effect on me and I can't ever seem to feel like I'm good enough for anything. I want to just be myself... find my spirituality in other things that work for me and just be open about it... I feel like a fake.
Sorry for such a long post, this has just been bothering me for so so long. It's making me terribly depressed. I feel I can't trust anyone. I should be letting the walls down for my husband, but I haven't been able to let my guard down with anyone about anything... I'm scared of being hurt. It's so bad that I think about jumping off the bridge here so often, it's like normal for me. I can't ever be good enough.
Please, never think about jumping: - try and ignore the people who are being so hurtful. You are a special person and have a lot to offer, and at 20 a whole new life ahead. It WILL get better! Best wishes.
Ok honey, its time to put this in perspective. I am 36 and I have been through a lot of the family drama and hate that you are up against if you come clean, leave the church and live your life the way you see fit.
Their is no need to go to drastic measures, they are so many of us who have been where you are and we PROMISE you it will get better. Believe us!
Here's the skinny, you need to take care of you. If that means telling your husband everything and it results in a loss of marriage, family, etc so be it. You have got to learn NOW to take care of you. If you don't learn to take care of yourself at 20 years old, it isn't going to happen in your life.
I know this sounds so much easier than it really is, but my recommendation is to get out of Utah, if that is where you are, or at least get some distance from your families. You need to build YOUR life and live it. No sense in wasting it trying to live according to what others want you to do, it will make you crazy in no time.
Whatever you do PLEASE don't have children right now if you can avoid it. Bringing a child into this situation will make your life so much more complicated. I only say all of this because I have been through all of it and survived after much grief and heartache.
Their are 'recovery from Mormonism' groups around, if you look. Remember, this time in your life is for you, regardless of what the church teaches you, your purpose in life is not to crank out the kids and make bread everyday. It is to use your brain and life your life to the best you see fit God would want you to do.
Keep us posted. We care.
I've posted this before but it's excellent. http://www.postmormon.org/exp_e/index.php/pomopedia/It_Started_with... You could check this out and see what you think. Tell your husband a friend sent this to you and you have questions about the church as a result. Ask him to explain why others believe these things or if they're true. He may find out things he never knew that may lead to him finding the truth.
Best of luck, Wayne
First of all let me say, congratulations to you for figuring things out at such a young age. You are way ahead of the curve on that subject. So already you have a brilliant mind working for you. I wish I had been able to have that level of understanding in my teens. It took me until almost age 33, to sort out my thoughts on the subject.
Second, you can never know for sure how someone will react to something, until you tell them. Perhaps your husband really isn't that into the church, and he just pretends to believe in it, because you also pretend to believe in it. I think that even if the road ahead may be difficult for a couple of months (or even years), ripping off the bandage quickly almost always hurts less, in the long run. Just prepare a few thoughts, run through how the conversation might go, in your head, a few times, and then tell him honestly how you feel. I think the worst thing in a relationship is when people keep deep secrets from each other. Nothing will destroy a person's trust in another faster. In order to let the healing process begin, the wound needs to be given some attention. Otherwise it will just fester until something really horrible happens.
Third, understand that you are not alone in your struggle. There are literally thousands, who are presently going through, or have in the past experienced exactly what you are facing now. Find some new friends who have been through similar things before. If you are on facebook, there are plenty of former Mormons who will give you tons of support, encouragement, and advice, all along your journey. I'm always looking to add new friends, and if you would like one more who has been where you are, feel free to send a request: http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1272787049
Best wishes to you, as you move forward.
Thank you all so much for the support, it's really helpful. I feel a lot better about it. I actually started talking to my husband about it and expressed my concerns, I found out he had a lot of the same feelings about the church. I actually thought he was just inactive cause he's kinda lazy lol. But he was very supportive about hearing me out. Tethercarguy, I actually showed him that link. I read it and found that pretty much 90% of that were my reasons for wanting to leave as well, and I even learned some. Needless to say, he read it, opened opened pretty much every link the author listed... We stayed up till 6am this morning reading things and watching like hour-long videos. I didn't push anything on him but I told him, if he wants to know more, to research and stay away from anti-literature. I don't want to push anything on him at all but I was so happy to know that he felt similar to how I did about the church.
That's great to hear your husband is supportive, open to investigating issues and that he has his doubts too. That must be a huge relief to you. Even though you're not on exactly the same page at this time, the two of you are much closer than you'd imagined. Way to go!! You're a trooper.
Sometimes we people have a tendency to focus on our negative fears, without seeing the potential positive outcomes. Occasionally we just need to step out of our safety zone, and take a risk, and we'll find that things aren't as bad as they seem.
Again, best wishes to you and your husband, as you step out of the darkness, and into the light, together.
So glad to hear your husband is in agreement. You need to be on the same path and if you have each other, it will only be easier!! Hang in there and keep us updated. Many of us have walked through the dark times of our childhood teachings unraveling. Its hard but will lead to a better life.