Any Mormons who fasted in hopes of Mitt Romney becoming president back in 2012 probably need to get drunk on wine coolers and rethink their life
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I don’t want to sound crazy, but the church has put all it’s money and effort in maintaining that desirability to outsiders. Have you heard the term “milk before meat?” ”Milk before meat” or more truthfully “bait and switch” is very common among fundamentalist cults/religions and it’s the church’s most used tactic in getting converts. You have a nice, friendly and happy story on the surface and a very carefully set up dialogue that would lure most anyone in, and then after they’ve got you, more deep doctrine and guidelines are thrust upon you. This bait and switch is even practiced on those born into the church. The church is very different as a child than it is as a young adult and onwards, especially once initiated in the temple. I remember church being on the funner side for primary and younger youth activities but then it became primarily drudgery as a young adult, where instead of being given nourishment, love, and a sense of friendship, we have to follow all these arbitrary rules involving every aspect of our lives and even told to appear exorbitantly happy to attract outsiders and try to get converts (what if you are sad or actually have human emotion and a non-mormon sees that? You just lost the church an official
cash making opportunity convert). If you break these rules, you risk losing your place in the afterlife, your family, all of your friends (most mormons group together and so if you leave, you really lose a lot of friends and connections)
Even now, being out of the church a few years, I see the appeal and occasionally crave what I once had. There really is a sense of togetherness, happiness, and success among most mormons, but it’s not all rainbows and sunshine and I recall how not one of these people talked to me again unless they were obligated to after I left (yes, the church makes your neighbors bug you, Sister Young didn’t just make cookies because she was thinking of you) and then I remember how much happier I am on the outside.
Now, it’s your life and if you think you’ll be happier inside, then do what you want and join on in the fun. Just remember that if you decide you want out, it takes way more effort than it should and you’ll potentially lose a lot, not all LDS are selfish and most really do want to be your friend, but not being a member makes it hard for them to continue being your friend because “they have standards to uphold”. If you’re fully in you can benefit, but even if you ever so slightly disagree with anything, it’s not worth it anymore.
I hoped my long rant helped you a bit!
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Now this is a super difficult question for me to answer because i’m basically in the same boat except I have completely avoided the tough questions with my family. Now, no one knows how each of your family members will react, but you know better than everyone else here. I also don’t know your current financial or living scenarios, so if you are still dependent upon your parents, I almost suggest you wait until your financially stable enough to move out worst case scenario. (My family reacted better than expected, but I realize that I’m more fortunate than many).
First things first, I recommend writing everything you want to say down in a letter. I did it that way because I express myself much better in writing, and that way it allowed me to get it all out without the danger of some awkward confrontation with someone who felt they should convince me of the error of my ways (at least not until after I had my say).
However you do it though, my advice is to avoid dwelling on the reasons that you don’t believe anymore, just something vague about how you’ve done a lot of soul searching, research, and prayer and that you simply can’t believe in what the church teaches. Instead of trying to prove point-by-point why Mormonism is fantasy (which is very tempting), focus your energy on reassuring them that you still love them and that you hope that this won’t damage your relationships with them. Taking the focus away from the church and putting it on what’s important helped direct my family’s reactions, I think. It allowed them to react based on their love for me rather than on feeling threatened if I had tried to attack the church.
Also, remember that some people will not take the news okay. You might actually be shit upon by relatives. Stay strong and remember that it’s your life and your responsible for your own happiness.
Lastly, to resign is a very big nail in the coffin, more to your family than anything as you now don’t show up as one of their children in the records, you’re not sealed to them anymore. I am waiting until my mother dies to remove my name just so I don’t cause any drama or break her heart, but if you still want to go forward with it, good luck, here’s a link with some info about what to expect while resigning and letter templates to send in to church headquarters. Good luck with anything you decide to do! I would love to hear about any updates, i’m rooting for you!