It’s taken me years to be able to put into words what I have gone through in order to officially leave the Mormon church behind me. There are certainly parts that will remain with me forever, because when you leave an organization with such a stronghold on each and every member, that’s what happens.
One night, I decided to see what it would look like if I began to write it all out, and suddenly, there was pages upon pages of experiences, frustrations, disappointments, and opinions. I knew that I couldn’t cram it all into one post without it becoming an online blog-novel. So I decided to chop it up into a series.
I have no idea how long this series will go. My original goal was three, but even after three, I feel like there is much more to write, more to say and more to share. And, I’ve found out that you don’t just leave Mormonism. It’s a process that takes many years to recover from. You have to reprogram yourself, and then figure out who you are underneath the exterior they told you were. And then there is the anger, the grief, and the shock. It’s a process like no other.
If you are here as a Mormon who is questioning, know this- there is a life after Mormonism. You won’t be miserable, but you may lose some important people in your life. I certainly have. You will struggle to find yourself again, because, it’s been hardwired into you. But it does, and will get better. You can be happy, even though they say you need them. You will have a beautiful life, even though they tell you it won’t be so. And, most importantly? You aren’t alone. There are many of us in the ex-Mormon community who have been there, who are ready to help you through this, and will embrace you with open arms.
To those of you here to tell me I am wrong, don’t bother. I respect that Mormonism has a place in your life, and I won’t bother you with it. You won’t find me on your blog telling you that you are wrong. If you feel the need to comment, I expect that you will do so with respect, and with the realization, that I don’t wish to hear you tell me your testimony, or how evil I am for speaking out about my personal experience within your church. My experience belongs to me, and I share it because I know how important it was for me to hear these stories when I was leaving the church.
Enjoy, and share at will. I believe that sharing and talking about these experiences will help others who find themselves on the fringe of Mormonism will let them know it will eventually be okay, that they aren’t crazy, and that there are others just like them. Lots of us.
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