Should I tell her ?

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.
Post Reply
Posts: 14
Joined: Sun Sep 25, 2022 5:32 pm

Should I tell her ?

Post by Conman52 » Wed Oct 19, 2022 8:38 am

Hello fellow Nomies: I could use some help. I have a granddaughter leaving on her mission next week. Fortunately she is staying stateside. Since I have come to the knowledge of the tscc not being what it says it is and totally false as a religion should I tell her or let it go ?? I feel like if I am the one to tell her I will end up being the bad guy !! On the other hand it's hard to see her waste two years of her life on a fake religion , what do you think ??

User avatar
Posts: 1429
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 4:04 pm

Re: Should I tell her ?

Post by Linked » Wed Oct 19, 2022 9:29 am

You should tell her you love her and give her some NOMish advice on how to stay safe and stay herself on her mission. A week before the mission is probably too late for useful dialogue about the truth of the mormon church. If you tell her the church is a steaming pile of bs right now all it will do is destroy your relationship with her without enough time to fix it before she leaves.

It is very frustrating that we are considered bad for doing what we think is right, but that's how it is so we sometimes have to tread lightly if we want to keep relationships intact.
"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
Posts: 2086
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 2:10 pm

Re: Should I tell her ?

Post by alas » Wed Oct 19, 2022 9:37 am

I can’t advise you on what to do, so much as give you an opinion on what I might do if I was in your position, and a lot of that depends on what I would be hoping to accomplish. Or, I could tell you what I would say or ask if I was still a social worker and you were my client. So, if you are a client, the first question I would ask is for you to consider what it is you actually want to accomplish. Do you want to talk her into not going? Do you want to destroy her testimony so that she leaves with a shattered testimony and tries to serve something she isn’t sure she believes in? Or, do you want for you to come clean, sort of out yourself as a nonbeliever? This idea f what do you wish to accomplish then gives you the chance to evaluate if you are likely to actually get the outcome you desire, or if you are more likely to damage a relationship and not accomplish any kind of positive outcome. Your motivation in telling her also makes a big difference in whether or not I would say something if I were in your place.

So, in general, kind of statistical outcomes. I have never seen anyone having a conversation in which the unbeliever says, “I don’t believe and this is why,” that had a good outcome. People put up defenses, they dig their heals in and believe that much more strongly. And you become the evil apostate. It is like trying to talk a Trump supporter out of supporting Trump. You can’t convince them. They have to see the evidence for themselves. This has even been proven with psychological experiments. Don’t do it.

If you want to get her not to go, I would suggest it is a bit late. She is one week away. That is rather late to cancel plans. And you most likely won’t succeed n convincing her that the church is false as above.

If you just want to come clean as a nonbeliever, then I would as a bunch of questions as to what that will accomplish. What kind of effect do you expect it to have on your relationship with her? How will it affect younger siblings if she shares with them? How will it change your relationship with your children, your spouse? Will finding out you don’t believe upset her just before she leaves and make her feel that things are not alright at home? Will she just have more to worry about as she leaves? Might it be better if you wait until she is back home?

And some questions just in general. Are you ready to have people try to fix you? Are you ready to have your non believing status reported to your ward? She very well might share your unbelief in an effort to reconvert you.

When I first joined NOM, way back before Columbus discovered America, there was a poster who can led herself Nana. She had a set of rules for talking to believers about the church. Simple set of two rules about when to talk to believers about church.
#1. Never talk to believers about the church.
#2. If you really have to talk to believers about the church, see rule #1.
All joking aside, if the person is nor ready to receive the information, all that happens is that they retrench. So, how do you know if they are really ready to hear about problems with the church? They will start to ask questions and do their own research. And the things that bother young people are different than the things that bother us old farts, and the things that bother women are different than the things that bother men. And on top of that, every person will have their own subject that triggers doubt and nobody can guess ahead of time what it will be.

Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

Return and report.

User avatar
Posts: 2086
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 2:10 pm

Re: Should I tell her ?

Post by alas » Wed Oct 19, 2022 9:38 am

P.S. you know her better than we do, so you are the best person to know how she will react to whatever you tell her.

User avatar
Posts: 390
Joined: Sun Sep 09, 2018 9:25 am

Re: Should I tell her ?

Post by stealthbishop » Wed Oct 19, 2022 9:59 am

In general, I am not a huge fan of trying to intervene and "save" others from the church or trying to educate them. In my experience, this can lead to even more retrenchment and the risk of a deep rupture in the relationship. I tried to do this with my wife and it not only wasn't effective but It put significant strain on our relationship. More often than not, I have heard more stories of deeper entrenchment than these interventions being effective in leading people out of the LDS church. It tends to backfire from my POV.

Having said that, this is a rule of thumb and every situation is different. Proceed carefully. Sending strong and clear signals to her that you care about her and love her and you are there for her if she struggles in any way might be perhaps a higher priority than other interventions?

May the Force be with you!
"Take second best
Put me to the test
Things on your chest
You need to confess"

-Depeche Mode

User avatar
Posts: 539
Joined: Thu May 31, 2018 8:26 am

Re: Should I tell her ?

Post by Angel » Wed Oct 19, 2022 11:32 am

Quite a few people find out on their mission - it might be good to know you have family support if you need it.

I would let her know I no longer believed so she knows who to find support with - but also let her know you support them going on their adventure too, that you know there are good things in every group, friendships, experiences, that you hope they have a good time.
“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
Posts: 4533
Joined: Tue Oct 18, 2016 4:22 am

Re: Should I tell her ?

Post by moksha » Wed Oct 19, 2022 11:53 am

From reading mission stories, I know the young recruits should speak up about health problems, unsafe conditions, and being hungry. If the mission becomes unbearable then speak up. She is there to be an unpaid salesperson and not a miserable indentured servant striving to provide numbers that make the mission president look good. Let her know to take care of herself and be vocal about it.

You can help provide an alternate perspective when she is ready for it. Those who are not ready will simply resent it.
Good faith does not require evidence, but it also does not turn a blind eye to that evidence. Otherwise, it becomes misplaced faith.
-- Moksha

User avatar
Posts: 1986
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2018 8:41 pm

Re: Should I tell her ?

Post by jfro18 » Wed Oct 19, 2022 1:06 pm

My personal experience is that going to someone with a deeply held belief and saying "I've found out this belief is not true and here is why" never ends well at least in the short/middle term.

So I don't have any real advice here beyond saying that I'd follow Linked's advice and just maybe talk to her about making sure she stays safe on her trip and to make sure if she ever needs ANYTIHNG she knows she can call you and maybe just trying to let her know that she doesn't have to fear telling you anything... although you'd have to phrase that so it doesn't sound ominous or creepy. :lol:

User avatar
Red Ryder
Posts: 3820
Joined: Sun Oct 16, 2016 5:14 pm

Re: Should I tell her ?

Post by Red Ryder » Wed Oct 19, 2022 2:20 pm

Here’s how I’ve approached similar situations with my nieces and nephews.

I’ve met them in person or in private and let them know that based on my mission experience a mission can be an emotional rollercoaster. They will experience the high of highs and the low of lows and a lot of boring time in between. If they ever need anything here’s my offer.

1. If you ever need extra money just let me know.
2. If you ever need anyone to talk to just call me.
3. If you want to come home early and you’re too afraid to talk to your parents, let me know. I’ll make the arrangements.
4. If you need anything the church, mission, or parents can’t provide, then let me know.
5. Have a good time, seek out fun, and enjoy the time. It goes by super slow yet so fast all at the same time.
6. Develop good habits. Self care goes along way even on the mission.
7. Don't take yourself too seriously.
8. 100% Obedience is silly. Don’t beat yourself up.
9. Stay safe
“It always devolves to Pantaloons. Always.” ~ Fluffy

“I switched baristas” ~ Lady Gaga

“Those who do not move do not notice their chains.” ~Rosa Luxemburg

User avatar
glass shelf
Posts: 354
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2016 6:27 pm

Re: Should I tell her ?

Post by glass shelf » Wed Oct 19, 2022 6:51 pm

I like all the comments about teling her basically that you are a soft place to land, if needed, and a source of support.

It's a week before her mission. It's not the time to announce dramatic things. Hopefully, her mission will help her figure it out and then she will need support which you will be in a unique place to provide.

(FWIW, I did have good luck with telling my parents "Hey, I don't believe this anymore , and this is why." but I know that's basically the Cinderella story of the exmo world. It still took months for that situation to all resolve, and it was pretty excruciatingly painful and intense while it did.)

User avatar
Posts: 133
Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2016 8:47 pm

Re: Should I tell her ?

Post by sparky » Thu Oct 20, 2022 6:57 am

I faced this scenario when my sister left for her mission a couple of years ago. It's hard to stand by and watch people needlessly sacrifice for what you know to be an illusion, but I have to concur with what others have said: trying to persuade her of what you believe is unlikely to turn out well for anyone. Just as your granddaughter is unlikely to persuade many people to change their beliefs as a full time missionary.

In my case, I just shared some advice with my sister that I thought would make her mission more bearable and cause less harm to her. Here's what I said:

1) Focus on people, not checked boxes. You're going to meet a lot of interesting people with different ideas and backgrounds. Listen to their experiences and you can learn a lot!

2) People have agency. Most people won't listen to what you say or change their minds, and that has nothing to do with you or how "successful" of a missionary you are. So define your success in terms of the efforts you put in and your ability to love and respect people regardless of how they receive you.

3) Have fun! You're going to make new friends, learn a lot, and have experiences you could never have dreamt up. Don't put too much pressure on yourself, and remember it's mostly in God's hands, not yours

User avatar
Just This Guy
Posts: 1394
Joined: Fri Oct 21, 2016 3:30 pm
Location: Almost Heaven

Re: Should I tell her ?

Post by Just This Guy » Thu Oct 20, 2022 8:36 am

You can't teach someone who is unwilling to learn.

I would talk to her, but keep it as generic as possible. Something like. "If you ever come across some church stuff that you have questions about, I can help you find accurate information."

I would let them know they can come to you, but don't go into anything about why they would want to. Keep it as high level as possible.
"The story so far: In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move." -- Douglas Adams

User avatar
Posts: 6412
Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2016 1:13 pm

Re: Should I tell her ?

Post by Hagoth » Thu Oct 20, 2022 7:08 pm

Missionaries LOOOOVE to have a story to tell about how Satan tried to stop them from going on their mission. Don't be that story! "Even my grandpa was deceived by Satan and tried to destroy my testimony just days before I left."
“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."

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests