Since it has become general knowledge that I am disaffected, to say the least, I have had several friends, family, and neighbors take on the role of my personal savior.  I am sure many of you have experienced the same thing.  Gratefully, my family has sort of backed off, now, which I appreciate as they respect my choice and are not willing to let it become a wedge overall.  My good TBM friends are also surprisingly accommodating and most are even having fun with it over all, asking questions and trying to understand.  I secretly think that a few of them are wrestling with their own questions and that our frequent conversations are serving to opening their eyes.  I can only hope.  Even the bishops/SP's/ward leaders have been gracious enough to let me take my path.  Having heard horror stories from others, I consider myself lucky.

All that said, a very good friend who is also neighbor and a good person overall has really taken on the role of rescuing me.  She is not even subtle about it - let me paste in a portion of a recent email she sent me:

I just went on a long walk and I was thinking about you.  I find it a bit amusing that you of all people need rescuing.  Now, even if I am weak myself, I'm not letting go until you are safe again.  You are in the fight for your life and I'm determined to convince you that, flaws in-all, the Gospel is His and this is the best place for you.  I didn't count on you helping me examine more fully that which I claim to know, but I guess that is your gift to me.  

I sorta feel bad, exposing her like this.  She is a good person with a good heart, but my attempt at boundaries with her is not working.

I would like to hear from others how you have dealt with similar situations as you departed from the church.

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Hi James. My experience has been very similar to yours. Just about everyone in my family and neighborhood have left me alone and allowed me to follow my path with respect, including the Bishop and Stake President. I'm sure they think I've been deceived but at least they have allowed me my peace. The only person who has really made any sort of attempt to save me has been my grandpa, who sees himself as the patriarch of the family and responsible for saving all of his progeny. I've mostly ignored and not responded to his letters as I really don't have anything that I could tell him that would really make him be at peace with my decision and would also likely serve to just keep the dialog going, which I don't want. You might have to be blunt with this neighbor and just lay it out that you don't need to be saved and have found your own truth etc. Good luck!
Yeah, I still haven't dealt with the letter I got from my friend and home teacher who said he is worried about my eternal future and doesn't want me to become an enemy to God. Arrgh! So, I'll read what folks suggested to you. I'm thinking I might just write back and suggest to him that his fears are his own, not mine, that I won't be coming back, etc. Still it is hard when it is someone you care about, and don't want to hurt them.
Well, I've had people react like this. I have told them that I am willing to discuss religion with them, but that they should prepare themselves to hear things they may not like or appreciate. I have also made it clear that I'm not interested in being saved by them, and that likely I will bring them down to my level >:p
If you don't respond at all, then you haven't fed them any fuel to keep going. Eventually, the flame has to fizzle out.

If someone got really militant about it and wouldn't shut up, I'd probably warn them that if they insisted on bearing their testimony to me, then they'd better be prepared to listen just as attentively to my un-testimony.
James,

This is never an easy thing to deal with. I have found that no matter how hard I have explained my position, it usually falls on deaf ears. There will always be those people that believe you are the one that needs saving because you don't believe the way they do. It is what the church teaches. We should talk about it more in a good old BIA lunch. We are probably due anyway.

Paul
Wow. I'd be so pissed-off by that e-mail. The audacious self-righteousness of this woman who thinks it is her duty to make you "safe"? Are you serious? Wow. Some friends you have, James. Don't let her talk down to you like that.

I would suggest that you bear her your ex-mo testimony. Tell her that leaving the church was the best decision you ever made, and that once out of the church, you were able to realize a greater degree of happiness than is offered by the church. Tell her how much better life is outside, and how you are a better and more complete person now. Tell her how you understand her confusion because that's how it feels to have your mind controlled by a system that is at odds with your authentic self.

Basically, you don't need to prove to her that the church is an evil cult. All you need to do is extract a promise that she will respect your decision to live your life as you choose. You can use her own Article of Faith to admonish her in this regard.

I'm working on this with my mother right now, this setting boundaries thing. Mormons are a bunch of two-faced liars though, and they will say one thing and do another all day long, completely unaware of the harm that they are doing to themselves and those around them. It makes me so angry I want to cry.

On a more comedic note, I'm trying to come up with some quip about holding onto the "iron rod" being the same thing as fondling Joe Smith's raging hard-on. Any ideas?
My neighbor "RS Sister" told me that Satan always found the weakest link and that he had found me. Through me, he is going to take many souls away from HF. I think I was suppose to be "scared straight." lol. Anyway, even after I moved away from her, she would try to e-mail me asking if she could please help (I wonder if that could be considered stalking these days)? She finally gave up (I think). That could have been me twenty years from now!
I haven't had this. Among my family and friends, my leaving "The Church" is practically a taboo topic. It is never discussed. I am regarded warily... apostates are scary animals... but nobody has confronted me or tried to discuss it in any way. I almost wish they would. This is creepy.
Wow! That does look self-righteous on her part. Well, I would say don't give in to Mormon "peer pressure", and just follow what feels right for you. With some people you have to be more firm about boundaries. Good luck with this issue!

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