I know there isn't much that you can help me with right now, but I was hoping for a minute that you didn't mind just reading a vent.
I am at work right now on the computer and this was pretty much the last day I have considered myself a Mormon after a long time of doubts that I have felt more at ease with by talking to other church members and bishopric that said that prayer and fasting would help my doubts go away. I stopped believing in any religion for about a few days but the feeling of guilt was too much that I felt peace when reading scripture, testimony and thought maybe I was back on the right track.
It wasn't until reading in D&C that talked about marriage by proxy for those who never got married, the practice of polygamy and creating spiritual babies in heaven with all your wives you had been sealed to on Earth, and those on other forums telling me that since I am asexual the only way for me to acheive the highest glory was through marriage by proxy of which I would be assigned a wife, and if I rejected I would have to in another degree of celestial life as a servant.
After a couple more hours of searching scripture, begging the lord to give me an answer of why everything is so confusing, why I can't live my life according to what I believe is right in my heart and still earn the highest degree, and why if I adopt a child as a single father someday I have to be separated from him in the kingdom unless I agreed to marry through an arranged marriage.
After looking at more evidence about Joseph Smith teaching that women are able to be sealed by proxy if not on earth, but then marries other people's wives and claimed to never have sex with anyone except Emma, adn then those same women which had been sealed to JS being sealed to Brigham Young also, and the church constantly changing what sealings mean and members all coming up with different answers, I knew that if there really was a heaven I did not want to be part of the heaven as described by Joseph Smith. After reading one scripture that doesn't conform to sermon, and seeing each member have a different excuse for why this is mis-interpreted, or claiming just to pray about it to see if this information is even accurate. I then realized that all my personal morals, values, and beliefs put me in a deep state of cognitive dissonance where after 4 months since I started doing some real LDS study, I then found that prayer wasn't going to be able to explain inconsistancies in the LDS church or even in the Bible, because for long I have been asking if eternal punishment made sense when someone is supposed to be forgiven of their sins, and why a loving God wouldn't really accept someone's plea to stay out of hell if they changed their ways because of what they couldn't come to terms with. After I realized I had nothing left in my toolkit to defend the church against critics with, I started to cry in tremendous pain in my room thinking that my life was over with and everything I had claimed to be I wasn't anymore, and I didn't want to be anyone else. Now I have to try to get the five children and my mother in my household to accept the fact that I will not accept any teachings of God just because of fear of the afterlife and what the Bible and Mormon church say happens to "non-believers." I am 23 going on 24 by the way. I live in South Carolina and I am a college student for elementary school education. I am still at the point where I feel sick to my stomache because my life going in a complete opposite direction as it was going before, I do not know what is in store for me now because I am going to feel like a hypocrite when I tell my friends and family about my true beliefs.
When I was 11 and baptized by personal choice I would have died if I ever had to figure out that someday I would say this.....
but I am a college student, a brother of 5 Mormon siblings, son of a Mormon mother, a former 1st and 2nd counselor of the Deacon's Quorum, a former member of the Teachers and Priests Chorum, I have been to the Kirtland temple, sacred grove, the hill cumorah paegent, and the johnson farm sure that I felt the holy ghost each time, and I still can't help cringing so tightly as I type this....
I am an ex-mormon.
Thanks for taking the time to read my venting and I hope it didn't waste any of your valuable time.
Just to remind everyone, it has been almost 11 months since I first posted this, so my feelings now aren't exactly the same as my feelings then. The reason I left the church on that day has remained the same simply because the past cannot be changed.
The last straw as I indicated above in different wording is that I think marriage can be a beautiful thing, but the choice of getting married is up to each individual alone if it is something they desire and it shouldn't be pressured on anyone. It also most certainly should not be required in order for the same salvation should there be any someday.
As far as the asexual part I wrote is concerned. My overall way I see myself sexually has changed, and it depends on what you really consider asexual. Back on the day I wrote this I would have sworn I was asexual, but that was because I didn't see enough significant evidence to consider myself anything else.
Looking at the way things are now. This past year I have found a few men attractive and looking back before to my teen years I have found maybe a guy here and there attractive on occasion. How I came to the conclusion that I was gay was when last semester started there was a guy in front of me in my philosophy class who was very attractive and then the thoughts came to me that even though I don't really care about a sexual relationship, kissing, or a romantic life, I have found some men attractive even though it is only around 1 and 1000 men I come across, but never once have I ever found a woman attractive.
I discovered this at the beginning of October shortly before the Ex-Mormon conference but didn't disclose it to anyone there because I was still getting used to the fact that I admitted to being gay. I did give a speech at the end of the conference though discussing some of the reasons I had left and some of the people I had encountered with while I was still Mormon that I became friends with after leaving the church.
However, I did come out to other Ex-Mormons eventually, then to some friends of mine locally at school and in theatre, and finally mustered up enough courage to tell my family on Christmas day. It felt awkward at first and was wondering if I did the right thing by telling them but now I am glad it is all out and it is one less thing I have to be harassed about every family get together where someone would always have to bring up me not having a girlfriend.
Nathan, whatever your sexuality, you deserve the same rights and freedoms as everyone else. And that includes religion, if one were to choose that. I know you've mentioned single fatherhood, and I have nothing against that. Keep in mind it is harder to do it alone. For those of us who've been there, we'll tell you it's hard to not have a partner to do it with. Conflicts do arise, sickness, etc. And children benefit from two parents.
Nate, I would like to second what Polly shared. You have the same rights and responsibilities as anyone else. What and how you do or do not particpate in "private affairs" has no bearing on your value or your ability to contribute to the validity of your own life, and the lives of others. Some of the people that were the greatest examples of strong heartedness and mental power that changed lives for the better were the people that I worlked as a Union Organizer with. Some were from other countries, some were Gay, Lesbian and Transgendered. Their abilities to complete the matter at hand and lift others were positive examples to me. Their value as a human, theoir ability to actively contribte to society and mankind as a whole was not determined by anything but themself and thir empowered self perception. You are free not because someone gave you their permission to be so. You are so because you said you are. You speak your reality into existance. It becomes so for you, screw others input...to a safe degree.
Latin / tu te putas, You are what you think you are. ut videtur, ita, as a man thineth, so is he
You are a good man Nate. I am pleased to know you thru this site.
I also wanted to add that I am very impressed at how you never got upset about me ripping on you for going to a Catholic church as I seemed to do a lot.
Seeing many of your posts and discussions in the chat room I can see you are not the biased saint worshiping statue idolizing Catholic as I assumed you were when you first told me you were one of those people. I know I've been cynical.
One Republic "Good Life".
hahaha, Nate. :) I always enjoy your comments. Human life and the experience that goes with it is far more important than anything on this earth. I dislike the actions of people that like to place everyone in a little box so they can be defined and "watched". People should be the best self they can be. Worrying aout what others think is worse than "leg irons".
Well you can pray to whoever you want and I won't trash you so much. However, once you start to look for the Virgin Mary on a grilled cheese sandwich, the trashing starts all over again.
In 1215 Pope Freddy the Brilliant said that the Blessed Virgin had to appear in a bowl of microwave oatmeal. I bear humble witness of this in the name of Quaker Oats, Amen.
I am a good Catholic, I just think that everything should be open to public discourse and humor. Sometimes people need to lighten up and get a damned life. I love my Catholic faith, but I have no trouble speaking up. Now, if you will excuse me you are appearing in an ice cream sandwich shortly. :) I have to go be "moved". Thank God the bathroom is not far away.
Most case workers would agree with you on this, but there are many single parent adoptions for many reasons.
For one, the amount of children up for adoption has nearly tripled since they had a policy prohibiting single parent adoptions. Another reason is that many children who are up for adoption have issues that prevent them from being placed in your average mom and pop family. Some of the reasons are that a male child in foster care often poses a great threat to the physical and emotional safety of smaller children. Many have sexual abuse issues and agencies are afraid to place them with smaller children or children of the opposite sex.
Other reasons are simply because married couples generally want to have their own children, and the ones who can't would rather adopt a baby than an older child. The married couples who want an older child will generally want a child who doesn't have too many problems that would endanger the lives of their other children.
I know other single parents online that have adopted and the main reason many of them adopted is simply because they were lonely. That wasn't the only reason, but that is typically a reason for all single parent adoptions.
I understand the risks and the potential dilemmas doing it alone, and will face them if and when it comes to that.
Right now I have so many other things to worry about right now that I can't even get tied up with that. A problem I'm seeing quite frequently on the internet through the adoptuskids facebook fan page is that many potential parents are being shunned away for various reasons and some have been sending their homestudies in for many children of all ages for like a couple years now and have had no success. I remember back when our family was consider adopting another child to our family four years ago we generally were only responded to by children in our own state. They prefer not to send the children out of state for some reason.
So believe me, you can rest assured that I have thought things through and have talked to other single parents. However, I don't want a romantic life, and being out of the church I no longer have to accept societal norms anymore.
Being lonely is a piss poor reason to drag a child into one's life. The child is given a job, from birth on, and that's not fair. Can singles do a bang up job of raising children? Of course. My whole point was it is much more difficult than most people realize. Kind of like newly weds wanting a baby. Babies are an incredible amount of work. And being single, to whom do you leave the children should some unexpected thing happen to you? It sounds like I'm thinking the worst, but the worst does happen from time to time, and if you are alone, and wanting to raise children, there needs to be a back up plan.
Polly unless children aren't planned all parents have them to satisfy some personal need in their life. So under that logic nobody should have children then. I'm not exactly sure what your motive is for trying to persuade me to change my plans but like I said, I thought these things through a lot. I also said in the past I'm not going to adopt a baby.
Nathan, My comments were in conjunction to what you had said, not necessarily about yourself. That some people adopt because they are lonely. I did not take this to mean you were talking about yourself necessarily. I know of a gay couple who are in the foster program right now, using those experiences to bolster their case for adoption. They usually take emergency situations with small children, who stay for maybe a month or so, and they have been quite surprised at the positive experiences they have had.
Well I'm just stating that it is a fact that most single parents adopt due to loneliness and I don't necessarily see a problem with that.
Both parties have their needs met. The child gets a permanent home, and the adult gets a gap in their life filled. It isn't bringing another child into the world, it is adopting a child who is without a forever family.
People don't do anything that doesn't benefit them.