Update from the village

This is for encouragement, ideas, and support for people going through a faith transition no matter where you hope to end up. This is also the place to laugh, cry, and love together.
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MalcolmVillager
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Joined: Mon Oct 31, 2016 8:01 pm

Update from the village

Post by MalcolmVillager » Sun May 02, 2021 6:53 pm

Hey all. It has been a while. I pop in here every once in a while to see the latest, but I spend most of my time on FB, TicTok, Reddit, and Marco Polo.

NOM was my first connection with fellow travelers during and after a faith/truth crisis which started in 2013. I found so much value as I stared into the abyss and navigated the rabbit hole. My wife was scared and resistant to all of my wavering testimony. We went the rounds with trying to doubt my doubts, getting off NOM where I was rehearsing my doubts with other doubters, and turned me into a really obsessed, but lazy (I usually did my learning in bed, or while driving) learner. I was depressed and even had a brief moment of suicidality.

About 5 years ago my DW told me she would never leave me, even if I left the church. It was a breath of fresh air. It was something that allowed me to proceed as my heart and mind dictated but without fear of losing my family.

Well in 2018 DW and I went to a retreat with Natasha Helfer, Dan Wotherapoon, and Jana Spangler. It opened her heart and mind to trusting me completely. Her shelf was heavy, but it was like that allowed her to also trust herself completely as well. She allowed her disgust of polygamy to release her fully explore the mess of mormon history.

Anyway, we have both navigated the last few years in ambiguity and in the closet PIMO, NOM, etc... with the ward, our families, and kids.

Increasingly my DW says she is done. Last night we had a special fireside for the women in our area (7 stakes) with Elder Runland and other leaders. She listened a bit on zoom while we were at home. He did some Q&A and had a question about Mother in Heaven. His answer passed her off so much that she says she is officially done. She can't take her kids to this church.

Now we have to decide how and when to say things to our kids, to the ward (we are primary teachers together), etc... we want to do the slow fade. She doesn't want to tell her aging father ever. I am increasingly comfortable with telling my family, although I know that it will have some consequences in their opinion of us.

COVID has been awesome. With church going back we will have to come out.

Leaving a high demand religion is really difficult. Watching scientology, JW, and FLDS escape shows I always thought it was weird how people struggled to leave, even when when they knew it was all BS.

Now I am at that cross roads it seems.

The exclusion, judgment, and shaming that will likely come are scary. I mostly feel for our kids who have 90% LDS kids here in the MorCor. They will have the benefit of not feeling pressure to go on missions, marry in the temple, give all their time and money to the COJCOLDS.

Anyway, sorry for the book.

It feels like the exodus is hastening. The internet and COVID seem to be picking up the pace of the awakening.

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jfro18
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Re: Update from the village

Post by jfro18 » Sun May 02, 2021 7:59 pm

It's always good to hear these stories - even though they're not all uplifting, it's really helpful to others (thinking of myself here) that are still in the thick of the mixed faith marriage part.

I'm glad to hear that you're starting to turn the corner away from the church, and I hope things go smoothly telling your family and of course the ward. I imagine when the believing spouse finally decides they are done there is still a lot of emotional tug-of-war when the ward keeps love bombing you to come back.

Good luck and I hope the next update is even more hopeful. :)

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Red Ryder
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Re: Update from the village

Post by Red Ryder » Sun May 02, 2021 8:29 pm

Glad to have met you in person Malcolm.

Here’s my advice.

Just be honest and tell everyone your not going back. Your taking a continued sabbatical after having the year off for Covid.

Then go live your life and move on.

No need for details or lists of issues. Or even for validation.

“The church no longer works for our family.”

It’s a complete sentence.

Then when your ostracized and your kids no longer have LDS friends and your community evaporates.... come and live next door to us! 😀

Ps. What does your wife think about Natasha’s excommunication?
Those who do not move do not notice their chains. —Rosa Luxemburg

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MalcolmVillager
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Re: Update from the village

Post by MalcolmVillager » Mon May 03, 2021 9:10 am

jfro18 wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 7:59 pm
It's always good to hear these stories - even though they're not all uplifting, it's really helpful to others (thinking of myself here) that are still in the thick of the mixed faith marriage part.

I'm glad to hear that you're starting to turn the corner away from the church, and I hope things go smoothly telling your family and of course the ward. I imagine when the believing spouse finally decides they are done there is still a lot of emotional tug-of-war when the ward keeps love bombing you to come back.

Good luck and I hope the next update is even more hopeful. :)
I will keep you all posted. Good luck in the MFM. We did it for about 3 years after I told her where I was (after 2 years of being in the process and closeted) and now we have been about 3 years mostly on the same page, but closeted together.

I have seen couples fall down the rabbit hole together and leave in a matter of weeks or months. I don't know how they do it. I guess we are wimps or super cautious.

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MalcolmVillager
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Joined: Mon Oct 31, 2016 8:01 pm

Re: Update from the village

Post by MalcolmVillager » Mon May 03, 2021 9:17 am

Red Ryder wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 8:29 pm
Glad to have met you in person Malcolm.

Here’s my advice.

Just be honest and tell everyone your not going back. Your taking a continued sabbatical after having the year off for Covid.

Then go live your life and move on.

No need for details or lists of issues. Or even for validation.

“The church no longer works for our family.”

It’s a complete sentence.

Then when your ostracized and your kids no longer have LDS friends and your community evaporates.... come and live next door to us! 😀

Ps. What does your wife think about Natasha’s excommunication?
RR you are one of the OG's. Glad to have met you IRL as well. I often think of that evening with the AZ dudes. I hope for a repeat at some point. I would love to get out of Idaho as well, and AZ is on the short list. Who knows.

DW is passed about the Natasha thing. She was certainly poking the bear with her public stance, in ways that other sex therapist have not done so openly (like Jennifer FF). They are "patriarchal pricks". Them kicking her out proves that point for her. There is so much damaging and bad sex education taught by the church. DW hates how it sets us all up for failure and insecurity forever. Natasha's being exed was also one of DW's "I'm done" moments.

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beetbox
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Re: Update from the village

Post by beetbox » Wed May 05, 2021 11:34 am

What a great update, MalcomVillager. I joined NOM back in 2013 as well. I love to hear updates from fellow travelers, especially the ones who were in the thick of it at the same time I was. I've been inactive from NOM for years now, but lately I started peeking in again. This has always been a pretty incredible community.

I'm so glad to hear things are going well with your wife. I have to admit that I'm somewhat jealous. But mostly I'm just happy for you. I love whenever I hear about couples making it out together. I'm sure there are additional challenges to navigate, but you are once again on a common foundation of belief. Congratulations!

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Corsair
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Location: Phoenix

Re: Update from the village

Post by Corsair » Wed May 05, 2021 1:29 pm

That
MalcolmVillager wrote:
Sun May 02, 2021 6:53 pm
Hey all. It has been a while. I pop in here every once in a while to see the latest, but I spend most of my time on FB, TicTok, Reddit, and Marco Polo.
That's a fascinating update, MalcomVillager. Good luck as you move forward and orient your family in a brand new philosophy and way of life. Utah has a lot of Mormons, but it increasingly has a lot of ex-Mormons and Never Mormons. Plus you are blessed with a suspicious number of Liberal Mormons who will tolerate your new status out of the LDS mainstream.

I think you may want to look for a new social group organized around a specific activity, career, or hobby. Perhaps a service group in your area could use some of your free time. Making friends outside of the church is a huge barrier particularly for women. My wife has only recently acquired some non-LDS co-workers who could be classified as low level friends. Recently we have been to two weddings and a New Years Eve party where alcohol was served and no other LDS people were around. I can't claim this will sway my wife. But her perspective has been expanded even if it is not necessarily changing.

I obviously don't know your family but I suspect you may face some similar social challenges. The LDS church tends to take over your social groups as much as it takes over your weekends. Finding a replacement helps a lot.

hmb
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Joined: Tue Jan 03, 2017 6:43 am

Re: Update from the village

Post by hmb » Fri May 07, 2021 5:39 am

Congrats on being able to face the hard part with your wife. I don't know how a NOM spouse does it alone. I was wondering what was said about Heavenly Mother that frustrated your wife? Are they still pushing the "She's too precious to talk about," " Must protect Her from hate" crap?

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