Really frustrated lately...

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.
User avatar
jfro18
Posts: 1555
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2018 8:41 pm

Really frustrated lately...

Post by jfro18 » Wed Aug 05, 2020 8:11 am

Just venting a bit since I have no one really to talk to otherwise given the restrictions and whatnot.

Lately I've gotten really frustrated with DW and church stuff. It's just been a slow build up of things, but over the last month or so she told me "I've pretty much gone to the dark side" politically because I said I was glad the Supreme Court upheld protections on LGBT people which she viewed as an attack on the church, she constantly chips away at science whether it's COVID, DNA, whatever, and she keeps retrenching into more literal/aggressive DezNat type apologetics. She has been very vocal about the 'attacks on religion' during the COVID lockdowns, must like the recent Holland(?) talk, and ran back to in-person church even though my mom has no immune system and she knows how dangerous that gatherings can be.

I'm quickly realizing that while I respect differing beliefs (and my parents are driving me nuts in this regard with politics but I still respect where they're at even if they're grossly misinformed), I'm struggling to respect where she is coming from anymore.

I can understand taking value in the stories of the Bible, but I can't respect telling our kid that it's just a "theory" that there were people alive a 60,000 years ago when the consensus is firm at this point that humans have been around for millions of years while also saying "I wish I could've been there to see it" when Moses parted the red sea and made the dirt perfectly dry to walk across. I was telling my kid about my neanderthal DNA in 23 & Me recently and my wife said "Well that's just one theory" as to what they're seeing even though the neanderthal "traits" that 23 and Me said I might have are almost 100% dead on right, which is amazing to me.

My kid was watching a video the other day of chimps flying a drone, and he asked how they could do that. I said that apes/chimps share almost all of the DNA we have so they're really smart animals and have a lot of the same body features we do, and she immediately shot in to say that no one really knows what the connection is and they are just theories (she loves the word theory to marginalize science). It's not a theory...we share like 99% of our DNA with chimps.

Like I said I'm just venting, but ever since she told me that she would enter into polygamy if the prophet asked her to do so I just have become really dead inside. I don't know why, but that was one of those gut punches I just never recovered from. And she said it to me like it was a GOOD thing that the only way she would do it is if the order came from the top. Sigh.

Sorry for venting, I just wanted to type it out a bit before I got to work because I've been in a funk lately with this stuff. It feels good to get it out even if it's on a message board. :lol:

User avatar
RubinHighlander
Posts: 1668
Joined: Tue Nov 08, 2016 7:20 am
Location: Behind the Zion Curtain

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by RubinHighlander » Wed Aug 05, 2020 10:22 am

JFRO bro!

So sorry man, that's such a sucky place to be, in the thick of the battle of BS vs Facts. Looks like she's doing some super mental gymnastics and doubling down. I think it's a sign of cogdis. From her perspective, it's her own salvation on the line if she can't at least keep the kid indoctrinated into the tribe. Unfortunately, it's now a her vs. you battle; she probably see it as literally battling Satan. I never had to endure that stage very long. While I was in the thick of it, after a couple of blow outs, I simply avoided talking about any of it unless she brought it up. When topics did come up I would try to show genuine emotion about it, how painful it was for me to try and resolve these things in my mind. I would avoid bombardment of facts, but more of a "I can't make this work, but wish I could." approach. I'd do my best to talk fairly about both sides of the issue. Mostly I doubled down on being a good husband and father. I found outlets for my anger. I lived a double life, occasionally drinking a beer with friends. What really helped was landscape or "landescape" photography, as I call it. Getting outside to the mountains or desert was where I stayed sane. I found ways to nurture the religion free side of my life for my own mental health. It's not an easy path to navigate but that's what worked for me over time.

Eventually my DW found her own way out, primarily because of her adult kids getting out. I provided a cushion for her crisis by showing her our relationship mattered the most, that even if I didn't believe it, I loved her more than my pride, that I was no going anywhere. Also, us, getting out into nature on as many Sunday's as possible really helped. Sticking to those positive family activities, avoiding the conflicts, hopefully in time your DW can figure it out. If not, no easy answers. Others here have found ways to stand up for themselves in a respective way to their spouses, others are just stuck in the thick of the battle like you are. So vent away, find catharsis wherever you can. Consider more outdoor activities away from all of the societal crap.
“Sir,' I said to the universe, 'I exist.' 'That,' said the universe, 'creates no sense of obligation in me whatsoever.”
--Douglas Adams

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YzmYP3PbfXE

User avatar
jfro18
Posts: 1555
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2018 8:41 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by jfro18 » Wed Aug 05, 2020 12:16 pm

RubinHighlander wrote:
Wed Aug 05, 2020 10:22 am
While I was in the thick of it, after a couple of blow outs, I simply avoided talking about any of it unless she brought it up. When topics did come up I would try to show genuine emotion about it, how painful it was for me to try and resolve these things in my mind. I would avoid bombardment of facts, but more of a "I can't make this work, but wish I could." approach. I'd do my best to talk fairly about both sides of the issue. Mostly I doubled down on being a good husband and father. I found outlets for my anger.
This sounds like me - we stopped talking about church probably almost a year ago now because she would come at me with an apologetic, I would explain why it couldn't work, and she would tell me she felt uncomfortable and shut it down.

I think having everyone home since early March has not helped - when I'm at work I'm running like crazy and don't talk to anyone (I rent space @ a warehouse for my job so I'm isolated, which is good in COVID times) and so I just have no real outlet like I had prior to COVID issues.

But when we talk about other things that cross-over into the church beliefs it gets dicey like when we were talking about statues being taken down, and she was enraged that the Brigham Young one was vandalized, but instead of talking about the BYU statue, she went out of her way to call Martin Luther King an adulterer who laughed as others were assaulted.

I just don't even know what to say to that... and the LGBT thing one she said she likes "marriage the way it used to be." Now had I brought up polygamy she would've stabbed me, but wtf does that even mean? Slavery USED to be a thing... segregation USED to be a thing... flat earth, etc, etc.

It's just been a slow but steady dose of that kind of stuff, and seeing how much she has retrenched into positions I don't believe she would've taken 5 years ago is really depressing. I stand up for myself to a point, but I stay quiet when she goes over stuff with our little one for obvious reasons.

It'll get better, but I really need an outlet at the moment and there just isn't one with everyone in limbo and locked down.

User avatar
alas
Posts: 1604
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 2:10 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by alas » Wed Aug 05, 2020 12:41 pm

Personally, it is the anti science, mixed with political crap that makes me most crazy about this kind of thinking. I can understand and accept wanting to believe in the church/God even if there is evidence to the contrary, when the person is willing to admit that the science is correct, but we just may not understand how it fits with the Bible. For example, on humans being around before the biblical Adam and Eve that is correct and they may not understand EXACTLY how and when God created the earth, or what the story of Adam and Eve really means, but believe that God did create the earth and us. When people take the Bible more literal than it even is, insisting for example that when God made Adam “out of the dust of the earth,” he literally took mud and made a statue and then made it alive. That to me is more insulting than evolution because I would rather be distantly related to apes than literally made of mud. The anti vaxers and flat earthers and conspiracy nuts who deny the science and believe what they want because a small poke in the arm *hurts* and they are stupid enough to take their chances with the disease are the people who drive the most crazy. I have a relative that I won’t even follow on Facebook, so she finds another way to send her anti science “the virus was created in a lab by the Democrats to get rid of trump” kind of crap every swear word day. So, what I am saying is you have my empathy for having to live with someone like that.

I don’t know that I have any advice but to hang in there until you can’t hang in any longer, and then there is nothing wrong with deciding that your sanity is a more important than your marriage, just as your marriage is more important than the church. Meanwhile, try being the most wonderful loving husband you can be, but remember you always have permission to refuse to have a conversation with her.

User avatar
jfro18
Posts: 1555
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2018 8:41 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by jfro18 » Wed Aug 05, 2020 6:36 pm

Our kid is having a sleepover with cousins tonight and DW kept pushing me on why I seemed off lately. I told her I felt like I was in a rut, so she pressed on what was bothering me.

I told her it was lots of little things but I was fine, she pressed more, I told her I didn't want to talk about stuff with her that touched church stuff, and then she basically told me I was controlling and that she wanted to do more outings with church people, go to the temple more, and tell our kid more about the church.

She told me she feels like I need to get over my feelings about the church, and when the time comes she is not afraid of what I will tell our kid and that I'm free to tell him whatever I want because she has her own evidence of spiritual witness. She told me it's my fault that I was hurt by her saying she would enter into polygamy because she only said it because she felt I was cornering her on it (she said it in a very calm conversation we were having and in a super casual way, but she does not remember it that way).

I told her it's difficult when I know she gets mad when I talk about things like DNA around our kid, but she told me I can say whatever I want and she'll say why it's wrong.

After that she said we should think about divorce because clearly we'll never get to a point where there's no tense feelings, and that she loves the church and believes all of it is true and that the "evidence" I have is just a piece of the story and we'll find out the rest after we're dead.

Then she said she's done all she is going to do which is to not expect me to go and to wait to talk to our kid about Mormonism... but garments/temples/going to church during a pandemic/literal belief in the science of Mormonism/etc is never going to change.

I just want to get in the car and drive... I know a lot of it is MY fault because I was the one who changed beliefs, but she has either retrenched a lot or she was holding back on me before. But at the end of the day I'm the one that changed even if she brought me into the church with false pretenses.

I guess she's right that I'm controlling in the sense that I want to actually talk to her about this stuff and go over the topics that bother me, but I have never once told her not to go to church and even though she knows I hate garments I have never said she shouldn't wear them. And the church is not controlling by telling her what to wear, what to eat/drink, etc.

Blah... I'm rambling. I hate that I was too scared to do some Google searches 22 years ago when I joined... I honestly think I could've saved us both from all of this one way or the other.

User avatar
Red Ryder
Posts: 2824
Joined: Sun Oct 16, 2016 5:14 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by Red Ryder » Thu Aug 06, 2020 11:55 am

“jfro18” wrote:I told her it was lots of little things but I was fine, she pressed more, I told her I didn't want to talk about stuff with her that touched church stuff, and then she basically told me I was controlling and that she wanted to do more outings with church people, go to the temple more, and tell our kid more about the church.
I’ve been here so many times. It’s a vicious cycle in the early stages of a mixed faith marriage. She feels attacked and unsafe which manifests as feeling like you are controlling. In reality your just trying to point out the church isn’t what it claims to be.

RubinH’s advice is spot on. Let her enjoy her church while you focus on the things you enjoy. The best way is to become indifferent to the church and as Corsair often says “treat her church activity as an expensive hobby like golf”.

I hate to suggest this because you’ve been wonderful to read on NOM and your site, but maybe you need a break from Mormonism and let it pass in the rear view mirror.
Those who do not move do not notice their chains. —Rosa Luxemburg

User avatar
jfro18
Posts: 1555
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2018 8:41 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by jfro18 » Fri Aug 07, 2020 7:57 am

Red Ryder wrote:
Thu Aug 06, 2020 11:55 am
I’ve been here so many times. It’s a vicious cycle in the early stages of a mixed faith marriage. She feels attacked and unsafe which manifests as feeling like you are controlling. In reality your just trying to point out the church isn’t what it claims to be.

RubinH’s advice is spot on. Let her enjoy her church while you focus on the things you enjoy. The best way is to become indifferent to the church and as Corsair often says “treat her church activity as an expensive hobby like golf”.

I hate to suggest this because you’ve been wonderful to read on NOM and your site, but maybe you need a break from Mormonism and let it pass in the rear view mirror.
The irony is that this was not even really started by "church" stuff, but more generic science/social stuff that she was jumping into because of the implications for the church.

She asked me yesterday if I believed I could prove the church was not true. I said yes, she said "you think you can PROVE it?" I said yes, you can prove it if you're willing to look at all of the issues together along with how you can trace where Joseph Smith was pulling from.

Then she told me to put it all together so she can read it, because she wants to know it all. I don't believe for a second that she actually is open to the info, and I told her that there's no point in that if she's not in a place where she can be open to information that contradicts what she believes.

She told me she wanted to read it and would take it seriously. Again, I don't believe for a second that she is open to it and I am in no rush to do it, but I told her I would although it would probably take a few months given how much I'm getting slammed by work at the moment after those initial lockdown months.

I'll probably do it as time permits, but not because I think she'll read it (and even if she does, she will leave the "we can't know everything" defense to allow for God to cover when there's no possible explanation that is faith promoting)... I think once I finish that I can toss it up on the site and take a long break from this stuff one way or the other outside of checking in on here since it's so much more (in my opinion) relaxed and casual than most other Mormon related areas online.

As one final thought - I absolutely hate garments. She has latched on to my one comment about two years ago that they are unsexy and has used that to come at me for so many things I never said. I did tell her yesterday that garments are unsexy and I have never seen a single person in or our of the church say they are sexy in any way. She said that I want her to run around in halter tops and short skirts... which is something I have never in any way said, but apparently there's no middle ground between dressing like a true believing Mormon and dressing in short skirts and halter tops. Who knew?

User avatar
Red Ryder
Posts: 2824
Joined: Sun Oct 16, 2016 5:14 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by Red Ryder » Fri Aug 07, 2020 1:52 pm

There’s nobody on this planet that hates garments more than I do but for many TBM women they are the most sacred of sacred cows.

Let’s do the math:

Garments = temple marriage + fidelity
Fidelity = standards + morality + wholesome
Wholesome = modesty + purity
Modesty = covered (shoulders + legs)

No garments = whoring around in short skirts and halter tops.

Makes total sense! :lol: :lol:
Those who do not move do not notice their chains. —Rosa Luxemburg

User avatar
Red Ryder
Posts: 2824
Joined: Sun Oct 16, 2016 5:14 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by Red Ryder » Fri Aug 07, 2020 2:05 pm

One more thing....

Perhaps writing it out for her you could start with a diagram or flowchart. Have Joseph Smith (the hub) in the center of a circle, then have lines out to various items like JS character, BOM, Eternal Marriage, priesthood, Early church, etc. Have the items closest to JS be general and descriptive of the issue. Then have two spokes off those items outlining the critical “why it’s false” issues. One describes the issues, the other then concludes with a decision point. Joseph was either a prophet or he made it up.

I think something very basic and simple that lines up everything would be great for “The Emotional Mormon”. That’s my label for members that don’t have a testimony based on the doctrine/technical church side. They just know it’s true because of the feelz and social support.
Those who do not move do not notice their chains. —Rosa Luxemburg

User avatar
wtfluff
Posts: 2740
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 3:20 pm
Location: Worshiping Gravity / Pulling Taffy

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by wtfluff » Fri Aug 07, 2020 6:19 pm

jfro18 wrote:
Fri Aug 07, 2020 7:57 am
...
She asked me yesterday if I believed I could prove the church was not true. I said yes, she said "you think you can PROVE it?" I said yes, you can prove it if you're willing to look at all of the issues together along with how you can trace where Joseph Smith was pulling from.
...
This "PROVE it" thing sounds promising. Or... It could also be a trap. :cry:

Personally, I would love a believer to say something similar to me. I definitely spend too much time thinking about COJCOLdS MORmONism, and one of those things I think about is: If COJCOLdS MORmONism were put on trial in good old 'Murica, what would actual evidence in a "court of law" show? Is "the church" true or false, "beyond a reasonable doubt?" Of course anyone who knows me knows which side I fall on, I'd definitely not be anything near an unbiased jury member.

Also, if these sorts of questions ever come up with a believer "close" to me, I personally am going to turn it around and ask "Do you really want to know? REALLY??? If the church is not True™ do you really want to know?" I don't know if 3, or 300 times asking them will be enough to get to the bottom of whether they really want answers, or if they are just looking for an opportunity to bear testimony, and toss around apologetics in an attempt to "fix" me.

As far as you "putting it all together," would "Letter for my wife" work? Or would it be better as something you've personally written? I'd love to see what you put together, but on the other hand, I'm just doing my part to save you some work, eh? :mrgreen:
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
jfro18
Posts: 1555
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2018 8:41 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by jfro18 » Fri Aug 07, 2020 7:02 pm

wtfluff wrote:
Fri Aug 07, 2020 6:19 pm
As far as you "putting it all together," would "Letter for my wife" work? Or would it be better as something you've personally written? I'd love to see what you put together, but on the other hand, I'm just doing my part to save you some work, eh? :mrgreen:
Funny thing about this is that I sent her Letter For My Wife when I first went down the rabbit hole and she said she would read it IF I read the FAIR rebuttal to the CES Letter.

I spent a few days reading the FAIR response twice along with the CES Letter... and she read LFMY for about 5 minutes.

Yesterday I brought that up to her when she said she wanted me to write it all down that I can "prove it" and she said she hates the CES Letter because they got some stuff wrong early in it (which I admit is really sloppy on Jeremy's part) and that she couldn't read LFMY because the intro was so "sappy and manipulative."

I find that funny because every church talk is sappy and manipulative, so clearly she was looking for a reason to avoid reading it... but that was 2 years ago now.

But I think LFMY is better than the CES Letter especially for those who are still strong believers because the tone is better, but I do think it can be better esp with regards to biblical scholarship and the BoM, which neither the CES or LFMY really touch.

User avatar
jfro18
Posts: 1555
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2018 8:41 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by jfro18 » Fri Aug 07, 2020 7:04 pm

Red Ryder wrote:
Fri Aug 07, 2020 2:05 pm
One more thing....

Perhaps writing it out for her you could start with a diagram or flowchart. Have Joseph Smith (the hub) in the center of a circle, then have lines out to various items like JS character, BOM, Eternal Marriage, priesthood, Early church, etc. Have the items closest to JS be general and descriptive of the issue. Then have two spokes off those items outlining the critical “why it’s false” issues. One describes the issues, the other then concludes with a decision point. Joseph was either a prophet or he made it up.

I think something very basic and simple that lines up everything would be great for “The Emotional Mormon”. That’s my label for members that don’t have a testimony based on the doctrine/technical church side. They just know it’s true because of the feelz and social support.
I should sketch some things like that out - it would be hard to get a lot of details in doing it that way BUT it would be super simple and maybe I could have attachment links to each for more details.

this is one of those areas where I'm not sure if the KISS model is right or just putting a ton of details in and really hitting the apologetics within it.

Like I said I wanted to do this before she asked, but I've never been able to get a good grasp in my mind of what would be most impactful for those who read it.

User avatar
Mormorrisey
Posts: 909
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 6:54 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by Mormorrisey » Mon Aug 10, 2020 8:51 am

Red Ryder wrote:
Thu Aug 06, 2020 11:55 am
“jfro18” wrote:I told her it was lots of little things but I was fine, she pressed more, I told her I didn't want to talk about stuff with her that touched church stuff, and then she basically told me I was controlling and that she wanted to do more outings with church people, go to the temple more, and tell our kid more about the church.
I’ve been here so many times. It’s a vicious cycle in the early stages of a mixed faith marriage. She feels attacked and unsafe which manifests as feeling like you are controlling. In reality your just trying to point out the church isn’t what it claims to be.

RubinH’s advice is spot on. Let her enjoy her church while you focus on the things you enjoy. The best way is to become indifferent to the church and as Corsair often says “treat her church activity as an expensive hobby like golf”.

I hate to suggest this because you’ve been wonderful to read on NOM and your site, but maybe you need a break from Mormonism and let it pass in the rear view mirror.
This is some great advice here, and I can only echo it. And yet I also have a lot of empathy, because I ranted and raved during my early days on NOM as well about how entrenched Sis M was, doesn't want to read anything, just has a very limited grasp of gospel principles yet holds onto them like a lifeline, etc. etc. It's crazy how reading this thread echoed what the missus and I went through just a few years ago. It's nuts.

The d word is tough, though. It was only brought up once or twice during these years, and it wasn't a pleasant conversation, and I'm glad it's completely disappeared from our vocabulary. I feel for you, man. And I can only encourage you to meet her halfway SOMEWHERE, if even to ignore the elephant in the room, ignore Mormonism completely in your conversations, and solely focus on your relationship with both Sis. jfro and your kids. And she has to do the same, and I'm not sure reading Deznat anti-apostate/aggressive crap is a good way of going about it either. So you both need to be willing to overlook the other's viewpoint. For example - every day Sis M does her Come Follow Me homework, and I don't ask her about it; she caught me listening to the Ritner podcast, and asked zero questions. We just talk about other things, and focus on things other than what we disagree about with Mormonism. And it's working REALLY well. And I don't want to rub it in your face, but things can get better, when we were at the same stage you're at. So please take what I'm saying in that spirit.

So well in fact, that last night she confided in me that she would not want to get married again if I died - she had listened to a zoom RS/PH lesson about women and the priesthood and was pretty upset by some of the comments that priesthood people made about women, and was really grateful I give her freedom to think for herself and believe what she wants, and treat her as an equal. When clearly a lot of men in our ward have a hard time with this. So she told me that it would really be hard to be married to anyone else because of how I treat her, which is a HUGE admission that she gave to her heretic spouse - even though she didn't stop while she was ahead, and said she just wished I was back to my old self. Which the old me would be offended at, but I saw what she meant and let it go - and that leads to great marital bliss, let me tell you. So that's how things have gotten that good, when they were as bad as you describe above. All I can do is repeat the advice given by RR, Corsair and others - meet each other halfway somewhere, and treat your wife's Mormonism as an expensive, rather silly hobby.

And come here to rant, and to listen. I've said it before, and I'll say it again. This forum saved my marriage. Thanks to all of you.
"And I don't need you...or, your homespun philosophies."
"And when you try to break my spirit, it won't work, because there's nothing left to break."

dogbite
Posts: 329
Joined: Tue May 30, 2017 1:28 pm
Location: SLC

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by dogbite » Fri Aug 14, 2020 3:59 pm

The best thing I found was to help my wife comprehend her identity and value outside of the church system/structure/society.

Mostly this was to compliment her on something she had done. And frame it about her. Early on, she would demure about God blessing her or god given talents. And I would say "but you did the work." Not contradict her or blow off the religious humility speech. Just focus it on what she herself accomplished.

So often women in mormondom have only been given validation through church. From what you write, it seems your wife may be part of that too.

My wife is still a nuanced believer but the church doesn't come between us.

User avatar
Hagoth
Posts: 4658
Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2016 1:13 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by Hagoth » Sat Aug 15, 2020 3:53 am

What I'm about to say is purely a mental exercise and is probably not a good idea.

If it has come down to the PROVE IT stage, maybe it would be useful for her to be the one to prove that the church is true, since it is the church that makes the outrageous truth claims, not the doubter. If she is asking you to prove it then she is asking for empirical evidence, right? The non-spiritual, non-emotional kind of evidence that is used by scientists not by mystics. In this arena, if the church's claims are true there should be non-spiritual/emotional empirical evidence to support them.

For example:

I can prove through archaeological artifacts and writing that any ancient civilization you care to discuss actually existed. Please show me a collection of artifacts that are unquestionably Nephite. Please point me to any peer reviewed publications by non-Mormons that support this. Also, please point me to any Mormon-authored papers about Nephite archaeology that are peer reviewed and persuasive to scholars outside of the church's apologetic community.

Please prove to me that the Book of Abraham is ancient scripture and that it came from sources not available to any human (by now you know so much about the BoA, Jfro, that you can respond to any of the apologetics out there).

Please prove to me that modern prophets are more reliably prophetic than any other people who have claimed to be prophetic. Show me the ratio of predictions that have come true to those that have not. Please give me statistics about how many priesthood blessings by general authorities have resulted in healing.

Like I said, probably not a great idea but if gauntlets are being thrown down it is the church that has to defend itself, not the person who just happens to not believe without evidence that angels hand out gold plates and magic spectacles.

I have no problem with anyone believing whatever makes their life better AS LONG AS they don't harm others or demand that other people sacrifice their own beliefs, critical thinking and moral compass to support those unfounded beliefs. Of course, that's the other problem with the Mormon mentality: my way or the highway.
“The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” -Mark Twain

Jesus: "The Kingdom of God is within you." The Buddha: "Be your own light."

User avatar
Hagoth
Posts: 4658
Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2016 1:13 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by Hagoth » Sat Aug 15, 2020 4:07 am

dogbite wrote:
Fri Aug 14, 2020 3:59 pm
The best thing I found was to help my wife comprehend her identity and value outside of the church system/structure/society.

Mostly this was to compliment her on something she had done. And frame it about her. Early on, she would demure about God blessing her or god given talents. And I would say "but you did the work." Not contradict her or blow off the religious humility speech. Just focus it on what she herself accomplished.

So often women in mormondom have only been given validation through church. From what you write, it seems your wife may be part of that too.

My wife is still a nuanced believer but the church doesn't come between us.
I love this.

After the turmoil of my initial "coming out" a lot of my effort with my wife has been to help her with her Mormon guilt and frequently remind her of all of the good things she does, regardless of the chruch's expectations. That helps her to feel that I can support her in her beliefs, and that I'm not laughing at her behind her back in that nasty apostate way that people seem to assume post-mos are always doing. It has helped her to realize that she can support me in my beliefs/nonbeliefs too.

I guess what I'm saying is that it has helped to change the focus to our personal beliefs and to help ease her down from feeling like she needs to be the Defender Of The Church. It's their job to defend themselves, not hers. Her job is to find a happy life. In the same way I don't have to be the representative for all apostates and non-believers.
“The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” -Mark Twain

Jesus: "The Kingdom of God is within you." The Buddha: "Be your own light."

User avatar
jfro18
Posts: 1555
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2018 8:41 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by jfro18 » Sat Aug 15, 2020 12:37 pm

Hagoth wrote:
Sat Aug 15, 2020 3:53 am
What I'm about to say is purely a mental exercise and is probably not a good idea.

If it has come down to the PROVE IT stage, maybe it would be useful for her to be the one to prove that the church is true, since it is the church that makes the outrageous truth claims, not the doubter. If she is asking you to prove it then she is asking for empirical evidence, right? The non-spiritual, non-emotional kind of evidence that is used by scientists not by mystics. In this arena, if the church's claims are true there should be non-spiritual/emotional empirical evidence to support them.
I guarantee if I brought it up this way she would say "I don't need to prove anything to you. *You* are the one that thinks I don't know about the church's truth claims, so you have to be the one to prove why I am wrong."

To that point I do want to note as I go that there is just no evidence to prove the church's claims right, although in a more subtle way than trying to hammer it over someone's head. I am going to write this not to my wife but just to a random member as far as tone/direction goes.
dogbite wrote:
Fri Aug 14, 2020 3:59 pm
The best thing I found was to help my wife comprehend her identity and value outside of the church system/structure/society.

So often women in mormondom have only been given validation through church. From what you write, it seems your wife may be part of that too.
I have tried to do make sure my wife knows that she is who she is because of HER and not the church, but it fails every time. She will say "I am the person I am because of the church" and I'll say "that's not true, you are the person you are because of you... there are good people in your church and bad people like every other organization" and she will ALWAYS fall back and say everything good about her is because of the church. It is a really depressing circle and she clearly can not see it.
Mormorrisey wrote:
Mon Aug 10, 2020 8:51 am
This is some great advice here, and I can only echo it. And yet I also have a lot of empathy, because I ranted and raved during my early days on NOM as well about how entrenched Sis M was, doesn't want to read anything, just has a very limited grasp of gospel principles yet holds onto them like a lifeline, etc. etc. It's crazy how reading this thread echoed what the missus and I went through just a few years ago. It's nuts.

And come here to rant, and to listen. I've said it before, and I'll say it again. This forum saved my marriage. Thanks to all of you.
Your advice is great and I'm trying - I try to ignore church stuff as best as I can with her, but lately it feels like it just keeps spilling over in non-direct ways such as the LGBT ruling from the Supreme Court, statues getting vandalized, DNA, etc. We get into these science or social topics and she'll get really defensive in saying she doesn't believe in those areas of science, or that gay marriage should be illegal because of how 'marriage used to be.'

And I think we both know when we talk about other issues like those that they spill into the church's reach, which only makes it more frustrating.

On top of that, she reads DezNat sources which makes me want to cry... because they are truly insane. Case in point is that she said she will never read the CES Letter because even I agree that the first chapter is sketchy with the maps and the 'plagiarism' from the Late War, yet when I point out that some of the sites she reads are contradicted entirely by the church's essays she sticks with them. That's obviously confirmation bias, but it's just hard to deal with the church stuff when she is becoming not just more entrenched, but moving towards reading/following people who are the alt-right of Mormonism.

But we'll see... things are calmer here this week and I'm just keeping my mouth shut. I have not started the "prove it" document and have no urgency, but I'll do it because she asked for it and I've wanted to do it for myself anyway. I just do not expect her to read it as I think she asked for it so she can later say "I've already seen everything you have to say and you're wrong." But like I said, it'll be fun to do when I have some free time over the next few months and I can toss it on the website after it's done.

Thanks everyone!

User avatar
Linked
Posts: 1106
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 4:04 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by Linked » Tue Aug 18, 2020 4:48 pm

Hey jfro, I wanted to tell you I feel for you man. Your situation is super hard.

If you look at my post history you know I have had my struggles with my relationship with my DW as we navigate my new beliefs. Things have been pretty good recently, mainly because we don't talk about church at all. We both try to find things we have in common and that's what we talk about and what we do together. It's also helped that we haven't had church. I do wish DW and I could discuss our beliefs, but at this point I am resigned to that never happening.

Unfortunately it takes 2 to not bring it up, and it sounds like your DW may not be interested in that. But maybe getting to the "I feel" discussions quickly when she says something painful (like that she would be a polygamous wife if a GA told her she needed to be) could help. And also listening to and empathizing with how she feels (you asking her if she would obey a direct commandment from someone she trusts like God that would clearly hurt you puts her in a terrible position, that's kind of the point of the question) could help.

I hope you are able to find some happiness in all this.
"I would write about life. Every person would be exactly as important as any other. All facts would also be given equal weightiness. Nothing would be left out. Let others bring order to chaos. I would bring chaos to order" - Kurt Vonnegut

User avatar
græy
Posts: 917
Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2016 2:52 pm
Location: Central TX

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by græy » Thu Aug 27, 2020 12:29 pm

I haven't been looking at the Mixed Faith Relationship posts recently, I'm sorry I've missed so much of the conversation here. I'm also sorry that this is so hard.

I'm somewhat lucky in that my wife's parents are somewhat science-literate and she has grown up with the mindset of trusting science. I get frustrated just trying to imagine having those arguments with someone and them denying things that are scientifically/physically provable.

Would you two be up for joining a Marriage on a Tightrope workshop? My wife and I have been in this for the last month or so and it has been incredibly helpful.

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/workshop-o ... 5642583079
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
Red Ryder
Posts: 2824
Joined: Sun Oct 16, 2016 5:14 pm

Re: Really frustrated lately...

Post by Red Ryder » Tue Sep 01, 2020 9:50 pm

jfro18 wrote:
Fri Aug 07, 2020 7:04 pm
Red Ryder wrote:
Fri Aug 07, 2020 2:05 pm
One more thing....

Perhaps writing it out for her you could start with a diagram or flowchart. Have Joseph Smith (the hub) in the center of a circle, then have lines out to various items like JS character, BOM, Eternal Marriage, priesthood, Early church, etc. Have the items closest to JS be general and descriptive of the issue. Then have two spokes off those items outlining the critical “why it’s false” issues. One describes the issues, the other then concludes with a decision point. Joseph was either a prophet or he made it up.

I think something very basic and simple that lines up everything would be great for “The Emotional Mormon”. That’s my label for members that don’t have a testimony based on the doctrine/technical church side. They just know it’s true because of the feelz and social support.
I should sketch some things like that out - it would be hard to get a lot of details in doing it that way BUT it would be super simple and maybe I could have attachment links to each for more details.

this is one of those areas where I'm not sure if the KISS model is right or just putting a ton of details in and really hitting the apologetics within it.

Like I said I wanted to do this before she asked, but I've never been able to get a good grasp in my mind of what would be most impactful for those who read it.
Here’s something I came across on reddit that would be interesting to replicate with Mormonism. Like the big map of forbidden Mormon information.

Image
Those who do not move do not notice their chains. —Rosa Luxemburg

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest