Estrangement

Discussions about negotiating relationships between faithful LDS believers and the apostates who love them. This applies in particular to mixed-faith marriages, but relations with children, parents, siblings, friends, and ward members is very welcome.
Post Reply
Thoughtful
Posts: 1162
Joined: Wed Apr 19, 2017 9:54 pm

Estrangement

Post by Thoughtful » Tue Dec 15, 2020 7:45 pm

I know I'm not the only one informally estranged from certain family members.

However, it's anyone formally estranged from specific relatives within a big old ugly Mormon dynasty?

Did you set boundaries with other family members regarding events where you'll both be present/ invited to? Do you tell others in the family that you've discontinued a relationship?

What has worked for you?

Best practices?

We just learned of more layers of generational trauma and are just, done. But want to do it in the way that will hopefully preserve relationships with family members that we do value.

User avatar
slavereeno
Posts: 1245
Joined: Tue Sep 19, 2017 8:30 am
Location: QC, AZ

Re: Estrangement

Post by slavereeno » Wed Dec 16, 2020 12:15 pm

Sorry to hear that you are feeling estranged. That sucks.

DW has gone to lengths to hide our disaffection from our family. However, there is still some suspicion, so we still get avoided a little.

User avatar
wtfluff
Posts: 3183
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 3:20 pm
Location: Worshiping Gravity / Pulling Taffy

Re: Estrangement

Post by wtfluff » Wed Dec 16, 2020 2:42 pm

MORmONism basically estranged my family of origin from each other, even when we were all attempting to be good MORmONs. "The Church" was always the most important thing in my family, which is what I believed caused the estrangement.

There's nothing like any sort of formal boundaries that I know of. We just basically don't get together as a family unless some MORmON milestone is in the works. So of course, not everyone shows up for those, and when the non-believers don't show, the believers toss around loads of MORmON platitudes to feel better that the non-believers aren't there? I'm not exactly sure why that happens. Thus my "feel better" question. Maybe it's just self-righteous judgment.

Flamilies Are Forever™ tho, amirite?
Faith does not give you the answers, it just stops you asking the questions. -Frater Ravus

Keep the company of those who seek the truth - run from those who have found it -Václav Havel

The Beauty of Gray

Red Ryder
Posts: 3403
Joined: Sun Oct 16, 2016 5:14 pm

Re: Estrangement

Post by Red Ryder » Wed Dec 16, 2020 3:18 pm

slavereeno wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 12:15 pm
Sorry to hear that you are feeling estranged. That sucks.

DW has gone to lengths to hide our disaffection from our family. However, there is still some suspicion, so we still get avoided a little.
Our disaffection?
..we still get avoided..”

Is the wife out now too? Holy cow! That is awesome.
Those who do not move do not notice their chains. —Rosa Luxemburg

User avatar
græy
Posts: 1180
Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2016 2:52 pm
Location: Central TX

Re: Estrangement

Post by græy » Thu Dec 17, 2020 8:03 am

I'm sorry you have to deal with all of this on top of everything else, Thoughtful.
wtfluff wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 2:42 pm
MORmONism basically estranged my family of origin from each other, even when we were all attempting to be good MORmONs. "The Church" was always the most important thing in my family, which is what I believed caused the estr
This is my family too. It is at least a 2-day drive to visit family. My parents refuse to fly to they only make the trip maybe once a year. Often they will drive for two days to get here late at night, stay for two days, then drive for two days to get home to teach a sunbeam lesson. Their own grandchildren are here and only see them roughly 5 days a year total, but those sunbeams can't miss a Sunday. :evil:
I'm better than dirt... well most dirt. Not that fancy store bought stuff, I can't compete with that... full of nutrients and everything. -Moe Sizlack

User avatar
wtfluff
Posts: 3183
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 3:20 pm
Location: Worshiping Gravity / Pulling Taffy

Re: Estrangement

Post by wtfluff » Thu Dec 17, 2020 11:55 am

græy wrote:
Thu Dec 17, 2020 8:03 am
I'm sorry you have to deal with all of this on top of everything else, Thoughtful.
wtfluff wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 2:42 pm
MORmONism basically estranged my family of origin from each other, even when we were all attempting to be good MORmONs. "The Church" was always the most important thing in my family, which is what I believed caused the estr
This is my family too. It is at least a 2-day drive to visit family. My parents refuse to fly to they only make the trip maybe once a year. Often they will drive for two days to get here late at night, stay for two days, then drive for two days to get home to teach a sunbeam lesson. Their own grandchildren are here and only see them roughly 5 days a year total, but those sunbeams can't miss a Sunday. :evil:
Oh, dear... My brain is slightly hesitant to jack up Thoughtful's thread with my MORmON baggage, but my fluffy fingers have a mind of their own.

Let me preface this by saying that my parents spent their entire lives in fairly small towns. The vast majority of their lives in small-town Utah. In other words: They're scared of the "Big City."

Well, guess what? The vast majority of their kids ended up in "Big Cities." My parents were never further than a long day's drive away from their kids, but even a 2-3 hour drive was too much. (Unless of course there was a MORmON milestone to "celebrate", but they even missed a few of those. A trip for a "Visit"? Never.)

Moving anywhere closer to any of their kids was never an option. BUT... When LD$-Inc. needed to extract a bit more flesh from my parents, they could live in BIG, downtown Salt Lake City for the "opportunity" to pay to serve The Corporation™ doing "Family History" schtuff for a year or two. The kicker for me: I was living in Sandy UT during my parent's Mission. I literally couldn't get them to drive ~15 miles from SLC to my place in Sandy for Sunday dinner with the kids & grandkids. I guarantee that if they had needed to dive 15 miles to "go to church," or a Polygamy Palace, they would have made that "sacrifice" in an instant. That was when I literally gave up at furthering/feeding my relationship with my parents, or even caring if my kids knew their grandparents on "my side" of the family.

So, in my best whiny-fluffy voice, I pull my Fallacy of Relative Privation card and type: "It coulda' been worse." Be glad that your parents will make a two-day drive once in a while to see their grandkids, my parents couldn't even drive ~15 miles to see their grandkids.

[/End Whiny Thread-Jack-Rant]



Edit: Spelling, of course!
Faith does not give you the answers, it just stops you asking the questions. -Frater Ravus

Keep the company of those who seek the truth - run from those who have found it -Václav Havel

The Beauty of Gray

User avatar
alas
Posts: 1892
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 2:10 pm

Re: Estrangement

Post by alas » Thu Dec 17, 2020 3:49 pm

Thoughtful wrote:
Tue Dec 15, 2020 7:45 pm
I know I'm not the only one informally estranged from certain family members.

However, it's anyone formally estranged from specific relatives within a big old ugly Mormon dynasty?

Did you set boundaries with other family members regarding events where you'll both be present/ invited to? Do you tell others in the family that you've discontinued a relationship?

What has worked for you?

Best practices?

We just learned of more layers of generational trauma and are just, done. But want to do it in the way that will hopefully preserve relationships with family members that we do value.
I know your estrangement is more than the apostate shunning that goes on in so many Mormon families.

I pretty much just muddled through. But then my mother was still with the jerk, but didn’t pretend that the abuse didn’t happen. So, I wanted contact with her, but she shared a house with the abuser. There was only a couple of years that I did not want to be at any family function that he was going to be to, and I was not protecting children, so there are some important differences. Where you family has kind of taken the abuser’s side, it makes it hard to keep any of them in your life. On the other hand, I had some resentments toward innocent family members because they were favored. Not their fault that Mom treated boys way different than girls and being boys they got no sexual abuse, but I still hated them for it.

With my situation, my siblings didn’t know why I was refusing to go to family events, and I didn’t feel it was fair to say, “him or me.” But your situation is different, so I think it is fair to handle it different. I think it is fair of you to tell the relatives why you refuse to be around an abusive person, and then just stay away from the big family events he will be at.

As far as maintaining relationships with those you want to maintain a good relationship with, don’t ask them to choose sides. Just ask that they understand and accept your choice, then try to find ways to spend time with them away from the big family group. Invite them for supper at your place. Or to visit. Go visit them at their home. Do a trip together. Find ways other than family events to be with them. Make your relationship with them independent of family ties.

Good luck with this. It is so much easier for me now that my parents are dead, even though the siblings have their own families.

Thoughtful
Posts: 1162
Joined: Wed Apr 19, 2017 9:54 pm

Re: Estrangement

Post by Thoughtful » Thu Dec 17, 2020 10:16 pm

alas wrote:
Thu Dec 17, 2020 3:49 pm
Thoughtful wrote:
Tue Dec 15, 2020 7:45 pm
I know I'm not the only one informally estranged from certain family members.

However, it's anyone formally estranged from specific relatives within a big old ugly Mormon dynasty?

Did you set boundaries with other family members regarding events where you'll both be present/ invited to? Do you tell others in the family that you've discontinued a relationship?

What has worked for you?

Best practices?

We just learned of more layers of generational trauma and are just, done. But want to do it in the way that will hopefully preserve relationships with family members that we do value.
I know your estrangement is more than the apostate shunning that goes on in so many Mormon families.

I pretty much just muddled through. But then my mother was still with the jerk, but didn’t pretend that the abuse didn’t happen. So, I wanted contact with her, but she shared a house with the abuser. There was only a couple of years that I did not want to be at any family function that he was going to be to, and I was not protecting children, so there are some important differences. Where you family has kind of taken the abuser’s side, it makes it hard to keep any of them in your life. On the other hand, I had some resentments toward innocent family members because they were favored. Not their fault that Mom treated boys way different than girls and being boys they got no sexual abuse, but I still hated them for it.

With my situation, my siblings didn’t know why I was refusing to go to family events, and I didn’t feel it was fair to say, “him or me.” But your situation is different, so I think it is fair to handle it different. I think it is fair of you to tell the relatives why you refuse to be around an abusive person, and then just stay away from the big family events he will be at.

As far as maintaining relationships with those you want to maintain a good relationship with, don’t ask them to choose sides. Just ask that they understand and accept your choice, then try to find ways to spend time with them away from the big family group. Invite them for supper at your place. Or to visit. Go visit them at their home. Do a trip together. Find ways other than family events to be with them. Make your relationship with them independent of family ties.

Good luck with this. It is so much easier for me now that my parents are dead, even though the siblings have their own families.
Thanks..."he" is incarcerated, pending trial. Unfortunately there's more now, more perpetrators we've become aware of, more higher level (highest level?) cover ups, and Spouseman holding the line has turned overt aggression on him from people with everything to lose and a long history of getting their way. The grooming over the last 50+ years means the people we like/ tolerate cannot conceptualize the reality. We will have to leave it all behind, I think. I'm not sure I thought it could be worse than it was 2 years ago, but...

Thoughtful
Posts: 1162
Joined: Wed Apr 19, 2017 9:54 pm

Re: Estrangement

Post by Thoughtful » Thu Dec 17, 2020 10:17 pm

slavereeno wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 12:15 pm
Sorry to hear that you are feeling estranged. That sucks.

DW has gone to lengths to hide our disaffection from our family. However, there is still some suspicion, so we still get avoided a little.
Thank you. This sounds like my side. My folks have taken it all better than I thought. I finally told them we are out and having that elephant in the room gone has been good.

Thoughtful
Posts: 1162
Joined: Wed Apr 19, 2017 9:54 pm

Re: Estrangement

Post by Thoughtful » Thu Dec 17, 2020 10:18 pm

græy wrote:
Thu Dec 17, 2020 8:03 am
I'm sorry you have to deal with all of this on top of everything else, Thoughtful.
wtfluff wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 2:42 pm
MORmONism basically estranged my family of origin from each other, even when we were all attempting to be good MORmONs. "The Church" was always the most important thing in my family, which is what I believed caused the estr
This is my family too. It is at least a 2-day drive to visit family. My parents refuse to fly to they only make the trip maybe once a year. Often they will drive for two days to get here late at night, stay for two days, then drive for two days to get home to teach a sunbeam lesson. Their own grandchildren are here and only see them roughly 5 days a year total, but those sunbeams can't miss a Sunday. :evil:

Thank you. The priorities sting, don't they?

Thoughtful
Posts: 1162
Joined: Wed Apr 19, 2017 9:54 pm

Re: Estrangement

Post by Thoughtful » Thu Dec 17, 2020 10:19 pm

wtfluff wrote:
Thu Dec 17, 2020 11:55 am
græy wrote:
Thu Dec 17, 2020 8:03 am
I'm sorry you have to deal with all of this on top of everything else, Thoughtful.
wtfluff wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 2:42 pm
MORmONism basically estranged my family of origin from each other, even when we were all attempting to be good MORmONs. "The Church" was always the most important thing in my family, which is what I believed caused the estr
This is my family too. It is at least a 2-day drive to visit family. My parents refuse to fly to they only make the trip maybe once a year. Often they will drive for two days to get here late at night, stay for two days, then drive for two days to get home to teach a sunbeam lesson. Their own grandchildren are here and only see them roughly 5 days a year total, but those sunbeams can't miss a Sunday. :evil:
Oh, dear... My brain is slightly hesitant to jack up Thoughtful's thread with my MORmON baggage, but my fluffy fingers have a mind of their own.

Let me preface this by saying that my parents spent their entire lives in fairly small towns. The vast majority of their lives in small-town Utah. In other words: They're scared of the "Big City."

Well, guess what? The vast majority of their kids ended up in "Big Cities." My parents were never further than a long day's drive away from their kids, but even a 2-3 hour drive was too much. (Unless of course there was a MORmON milestone to "celebrate", but they even missed a few of those. A trip for a "Visit"? Never.)

Moving anywhere closer to any of their kids was never an option. BUT... When LD$-Inc. needed to extract a bit more flesh from my parents, they could live in BIG, downtown Salt Lake City for the "opportunity" to pay to serve The Corporation™ doing "Family History" schtuff for a year or two. The kicker for me: I was living in Sandy UT during my parent's Mission. I literally couldn't get them to drive ~15 miles from SLC to my place in Sandy for Sunday dinner with the kids & grandkids. I guarantee that if they had needed to dive 15 miles to "go to church," or a Polygamy Palace, they would have made that "sacrifice" in an instant. That was when I literally gave up at furthering/feeding my relationship with my parents, or even caring if my kids knew their grandparents on "my side" of the family.

So, in my best whiny-fluffy voice, I pull my Fallacy of Relative Privation card and type: "It coulda' been worse." Be glad that your parents will make a two-day drive once in a while to see their grandkids, my parents couldn't even drive ~15 miles to see their grandkids.

[/End Whiny Thread-Jack-Rant]



Edit: Spelling, of course!
Share away! No one's circumstance is identical. I appreciate the solidarity and the thoughts.

User avatar
alas
Posts: 1892
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 2:10 pm

Re: Estrangement

Post by alas » Fri Dec 18, 2020 3:25 pm

Thoughtful wrote:
Thu Dec 17, 2020 10:16 pm
alas wrote:
Thu Dec 17, 2020 3:49 pm
Thoughtful wrote:
Tue Dec 15, 2020 7:45 pm
I know I'm not the only one informally estranged from certain family members.

However, it's anyone formally estranged from specific relatives within a big old ugly Mormon dynasty?

Did you set boundaries with other family members regarding events where you'll both be present/ invited to? Do you tell others in the family that you've discontinued a relationship?

What has worked for you?

Best practices?

We just learned of more layers of generational trauma and are just, done. But want to do it in the way that will hopefully preserve relationships with family members that we do value.
I know your estrangement is more than the apostate shunning that goes on in so many Mormon families.

I pretty much just muddled through. But then my mother was still with the jerk, but didn’t pretend that the abuse didn’t happen. So, I wanted contact with her, but she shared a house with the abuser. There was only a couple of years that I did not want to be at any family function that he was going to be to, and I was not protecting children, so there are some important differences. Where you family has kind of taken the abuser’s side, it makes it hard to keep any of them in your life. On the other hand, I had some resentments toward innocent family members because they were favored. Not their fault that Mom treated boys way different than girls and being boys they got no sexual abuse, but I still hated them for it.

With my situation, my siblings didn’t know why I was refusing to go to family events, and I didn’t feel it was fair to say, “him or me.” But your situation is different, so I think it is fair to handle it different. I think it is fair of you to tell the relatives why you refuse to be around an abusive person, and then just stay away from the big family events he will be at.

As far as maintaining relationships with those you want to maintain a good relationship with, don’t ask them to choose sides. Just ask that they understand and accept your choice, then try to find ways to spend time with them away from the big family group. Invite them for supper at your place. Or to visit. Go visit them at their home. Do a trip together. Find ways other than family events to be with them. Make your relationship with them independent of family ties.

Good luck with this. It is so much easier for me now that my parents are dead, even though the siblings have their own families.
Thanks..."he" is incarcerated, pending trial. Unfortunately there's more now, more perpetrators we've become aware of, more higher level (highest level?) cover ups, and Spouseman holding the line has turned overt aggression on him from people with everything to lose and a long history of getting their way. The grooming over the last 50+ years means the people we like/ tolerate cannot conceptualize the reality. We will have to leave it all behind, I think. I'm not sure I thought it could be worse than it was 2 years ago, but...
Maybe it is time to decide that big family gatherings like weddings and funerals are out because there are just too many toxic people there. Then go through the relatives one by one and decide which ones you want to maintain a relationship with, which are toxic, and who are attached to someone toxic, and who isn’t worth bothering with. Then figure out how to stay in contact with the few who are worth it. For me that is only my younger brother and sister. All others have been let go.

It gets easier as you get older and the ties to parents are further in the rear view mirror.

User avatar
Angel
Posts: 379
Joined: Thu May 31, 2018 8:26 am

Re: Estrangement

Post by Angel » Tue Dec 29, 2020 4:45 pm

In anticipation of upcoming gatherings, and with a little help, this list was developed:

how to diffuse conflict:

#1 show love,

#2 divert conversation to something non-confrontational about them, people enjoy talking about themselves. What projects they are working on, how great their kids are, how nice their house is etc. (I actually bought one of those table-top conversation starter card sets, and will pull a card out to start a new conversation when needed)

#3 Provide more than ample amounts of high-quality food to prevent "hangry"

#4 Set healthy boundaries when needed with a simple statement such as "I know where you stand, and you know where I stand. We're not going to change each other's minds. Let's talk about something else."

It happens in all families, not just Mormons, and it usually just takes time. Last Christmas I was able to get everyone together (including lesbian Aunt and her wife) for dinner.

My grandmother died - she was the one to stand up for my homosexual cousin and his husband. This sweet couple - been together 25+ years now, would send flowers to my grandmother for all holidays etc. This year, after grandma's death, my cousin sent flowers to my mom (who is very religious, and still silent on some issues). My mom feels like she needs to be the new grandmother so we will see how this goes.

Speaking of which, I should write an "I love you guys, might not agree with you, but love you" letter as of now. I always leave the door open, up to them to decide when they are comfortable being together or not.
“You have learned something...That always feels at first as if you have lost something.” George Bernard Shaw
When it is dark enough, you can see the stars. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

User avatar
Angel
Posts: 379
Joined: Thu May 31, 2018 8:26 am

Re: Estrangement

Post by Angel » Tue Dec 29, 2020 4:55 pm

Thoughtful wrote:
Thu Dec 17, 2020 10:16 pm

Thanks..."he" is incarcerated, pending trial. Unfortunately there's more now, more perpetrators we've become aware of, more higher level (highest level?) cover ups, and Spouseman holding the line has turned overt aggression on him from people with everything to lose and a long history of getting their way. The grooming over the last 50+ years means the people we like/ tolerate cannot conceptualize the reality. We will have to leave it all behind, I think. I'm not sure I thought it could be worse than it was 2 years ago, but...
I have 3 incarcerated in my family, and others that could be.... Stake president convo - is it genetic? Not sure, but some abuse victims rationalize it, and then allow the cycle to continue. Abused by dad = ok with son being an abuser. Another abused by dad = ok with husband abusing kids (still married to him rather than break their vows - will not go into details on the kids...)

It sucks.
“You have learned something...That always feels at first as if you have lost something.” George Bernard Shaw
When it is dark enough, you can see the stars. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thoughtful
Posts: 1162
Joined: Wed Apr 19, 2017 9:54 pm

Re: Estrangement

Post by Thoughtful » Thu Dec 31, 2020 8:27 pm

Angel wrote:
Tue Dec 29, 2020 4:55 pm
Thoughtful wrote:
Thu Dec 17, 2020 10:16 pm

Thanks..."he" is incarcerated, pending trial. Unfortunately there's more now, more perpetrators we've become aware of, more higher level (highest level?) cover ups, and Spouseman holding the line has turned overt aggression on him from people with everything to lose and a long history of getting their way. The grooming over the last 50+ years means the people we like/ tolerate cannot conceptualize the reality. We will have to leave it all behind, I think. I'm not sure I thought it could be worse than it was 2 years ago, but...
I have 3 incarcerated in my family, and others that could be.... Stake president convo - is it genetic? Not sure, but some abuse victims rationalize it, and then allow the cycle to continue. Abused by dad = ok with son being an abuser. Another abused by dad = ok with husband abusing kids (still married to him rather than break their vows - will not go into details on the kids...)

It sucks.

Indeed. I'm sorry.

User avatar
alas
Posts: 1892
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 2:10 pm

Re: Estrangement

Post by alas » Thu Jan 07, 2021 12:10 pm

Thoughtful wrote:
Thu Dec 31, 2020 8:27 pm
Angel wrote:
Tue Dec 29, 2020 4:55 pm
Thoughtful wrote:
Thu Dec 17, 2020 10:16 pm

Thanks..."he" is incarcerated, pending trial. Unfortunately there's more now, more perpetrators we've become aware of, more higher level (highest level?) cover ups, and Spouseman holding the line has turned overt aggression on him from people with everything to lose and a long history of getting their way. The grooming over the last 50+ years means the people we like/ tolerate cannot conceptualize the reality. We will have to leave it all behind, I think. I'm not sure I thought it could be worse than it was 2 years ago, but...
I have 3 incarcerated in my family, and others that could be.... Stake president convo - is it genetic? Not sure, but some abuse victims rationalize it, and then allow the cycle to continue. Abused by dad = ok with son being an abuser. Another abused by dad = ok with husband abusing kids (still married to him rather than break their vows - will not go into details on the kids...)

It sucks.

Indeed. I'm sorry.
I have honestly wondered if it is partly genetic. My grandfather was abusive. All evidence says he was sexually abusive of his oldest daughter, and then she got her younger sister out of that house when that aunt was a fairly young teen. But no one ever said. And from my grandmothers stories and my dad’s stories, I know he was physically abusive to the point that he came within inches of killing or maiming my dad. And my father was sexually abusive, but never physically abusive to the kids, but he was physically abusive to mom.

It runs in families, and so does a tendency to either psychopathic personality disorder and schizophrenia. Many abusers show some traits of PPD, but not the full blown personality disorder. And what makes the difference between the child who grows up determined to be a better parent after abuse, and the child who repeats the abuse into the next generation?

User avatar
slavereeno
Posts: 1245
Joined: Tue Sep 19, 2017 8:30 am
Location: QC, AZ

Re: Estrangement

Post by slavereeno » Tue Jan 12, 2021 10:32 pm

Red Ryder wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 3:18 pm
slavereeno wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 12:15 pm
Sorry to hear that you are feeling estranged. That sucks.

DW has gone to lengths to hide our disaffection from our family. However, there is still some suspicion, so we still get avoided a little.
Our disaffection?
..we still get avoided..”

Is the wife out now too? Holy cow! That is awesome.
Yeah, I try to avoid telling her story for her, but essentially DW, and all our kids are out now. :D Probably the main reason I have been so apathetic posting on here. :( We are still keeping up appearances in the ward (sorta?) though, whatever that means during covid.

Love all you all, don't know how I would have managed the past 3 years without NOM.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests