Hard to believe God is that cruel !

Public forum for those seeking support for their experience in the LDS Church.
Rebel
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Joined: 08 Jun 2017, 17:02

Hard to believe God is that cruel !

Post by Rebel » 30 Apr 2018, 12:39

I have been out of the church for almost a year. It was my hope that when I resigned that my wife would follow , I was wrong she is dug in as far as one could get a true TBM . I do not believe in Mormonism at all except for basic Christianity. She is still pushing for me to come back (rebaptized) or else . Why would God be so cruel as to put me in this situation ? Its a no win . if I go back where is my integrity ? If I don't go back my 40 year marriage may end . Hard to visualize a God that can't make this work . Thoughts.
Last edited by Rebel on 14 May 2018, 17:11, edited 1 time in total.

Roy
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Re: Hard to believe God is that cruel !

Post by Roy » 30 Apr 2018, 14:09

I am very sorry for your predicament.

My experiences have led me to believe that God is much more "hands off" than we might believe. Therefor I do not believe that God set up this rock and a hard place situation you are currently in.
Rebel wrote:
30 Apr 2018, 12:39
It was my hope that when I resigned that my wife would follow , I was wrong she is dug in as far as one could get a true TBM ....She is still pushing for me to come back (rebaptized) or else .
There appears to be a lack of communication, mutual respect, and understanding in your marriage. What types of conversations did you have with your wife before, during, and after you resigned from the church? Was she supportive of your decision at that time? What has changed?

If you resigned from the church to try and force your wife's hand then that appears to have been ill advised.

Are you supportive of your wife's current beliefs and activity in the church? Are you willing to go to church with her? Is your parenting in conflict in regards to church standards?
Rebel wrote:
30 Apr 2018, 12:39
She is still pushing for me to come back (rebaptized) or else ... If I don't go back my 40 year marriage may end .
If your wife is trying to coerce you or manipulate you with a threat of divorce, that too is rather shortsighted. I believe that use of the divorce card will weaken the underlying permanence of the relationship. It should be used only in the most dire and serious of circumstances.

Therefor, I believe your best option is to start by trying to listen to and understand your wife with respect for her beliefs and opinions. Steven Coveys calls this "seek first to understand, before seeking to be understood" in his book 7 habits of highly effective people.

I hope it gets better.
"It is not so much the pain and suffering of life which crushes the individual as it is its meaninglessness and hopelessness." C. A. Elwood

“It is not the function of religion to answer all the questions about God’s moral government of the universe, but to give one courage, through faith, to go on in the face of questions he never finds the answer to in his present status.” TPC: Harold B. Lee 223

"I struggle now with establishing my faith that God may always be there, but may not always need to intervene" Heber13

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dande48
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Re: Hard to believe God is that cruel !

Post by dande48 » 30 Apr 2018, 20:12

So sorry to hear, Rebel. That's a very tough place to be.

Echoing Roy a bit... It's your wife who is being cruel. It's also, largely because of the teachings of the Church, that has caused this. I doubt God has very much to do with it. If your wife really means it, that you have to be someone who are not, there is nothing you can do. It's hard for many TBMs to believe this, but when you honestly, truthfully believe something isn't true, you can't just start believing in it because you want to or wish it was so. It'd be like believeing the earth is flat, or that fairies are real. I could sooner change my height or the color of my skin.

Even if the Church was true, would God really want you to be baptized if you honestly believed it was not? I figure, it's better to do what you feel is right, and turn out to be wrong, than do what you feel is wrong, and turn out to be right. I don't see how being rebaptized for anything other than believing the Church to be true, can turn out well. I'd fight for your marriage, and hold fast to your covenants. The promises you made were to God and your wife, not the Church. If your wife leaves you for following God, it's on her.

Best of luck, friend. If you need someone to talk to, or a call, or anything I can offer on my end, shoot me a PM. It's a very hard thing you're going through, and I'd hate for you to go it alone.
"The whole world is a comedy to those that think, a tragedy to those that feel." - Horace Walpole

"Even though there are no ways of knowing for sure, there are ways of knowing for pretty sure."
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Curt Sunshine
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Re: Hard to believe God is that cruel !

Post by Curt Sunshine » 30 Apr 2018, 20:33

I am going to be blunt in this comment. I hope you understand why.

God didn't do this. The Church didn't do this. You did it. You have to face that, accept that, and figure out how to deal with it.

I am not saying it was right or wrong. I can't know that. I'm simply saying you are the one who chose to change your relationship so dramatically with your wife, and you are the one who did it hoping to change her - by taking her away from what works for her. Remember that: The Church works for her, and you wanted to take that away from her. It is easy to say she is being demanding, manipulative, and coercisive - but she didn't change the relationship. You did. Therefore, you have the majority responsibility to make it work if you truly want it to work.

Perhaps that is impossible at this point. Perhaps the two of you simply are too far apart right now. Perhaps not. Again, I can't say one way or another. However, I can say that blaming her, God, or the Church won't help you in the long run. You have to accept your part in it, fully, and deal with that with your eyes wide open.

What happens now is up to you. Can you stay together and make it work? Are you past that point? Can you and she compromise your "ideals" in order to stay together? Do you want that?

You don't need to answer those questions here, but you have to answer them within yourself and with her. Again, just don't throw her under the bus, and don't blame God. It isn't God's fault if you break up, and it isn't God's responsibility to make it work. That is your and your wife's job, if you want to make it work.
I see through my glass, darkly - as I play my saxophone in harmony with the other instruments in God's orchestra. (h/t Elder Joseph Wirthlin)

Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

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SilentDawning
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Re: Hard to believe God is that cruel !

Post by SilentDawning » 30 Apr 2018, 22:23

Rebel wrote:
30 Apr 2018, 12:39
I have been out of the church for almost a year. It was my hope that when I resigned that my wife would follow , I was wrong she is dug in as far as one could get a true TBM . I do not believe in Mormonism at all except for basic Christianity. She is still pushing for me to come back (rebaptized) or else . Why would God be so cruel as to put me in this situation ? Its a no win . if I go back where is my integrity ? If I don't go back my 40 year marriage may end . Hard to visualize a God that can't make this work . Thoughts.
I think it's your wife making you do this hard decision, not God. I hestitate to blame you personally for being in this situation, although your decision to resign is part of it.

Here is where you have to do a cost-benefit analysis and see if the costs of joining the church again outweigh the benefits of keeping your marriage together.

Also, will your wife keep pushing until you are a TR holder again?

It's easier if all she expects is basic membership, but TR holding and full tilt service can be hard to manage.

Why did you resign?
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- SD

"Stage 5 is where you no longer believe the gospel as its literally or traditionally taught. Nonetheless, you find your own way to be active and at peace within it". -- SD

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."

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DarkJedi
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Re: Hard to believe God is that cruel !

Post by DarkJedi » 01 May 2018, 05:27

What Roy and Curt said. :thumbup:
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

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nibbler
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Re: Hard to believe God is that cruel !

Post by nibbler » 01 May 2018, 09:56

Curt Sunshine wrote:
30 Apr 2018, 20:33
I am not saying it was right or wrong. I can't know that. I'm simply saying you are the one who chose to change your relationship so dramatically with your wife, and you are the one who did it hoping to change her - by taking her away from what works for her. Remember that: The Church works for her, and you wanted to take that away from her. It is easy to say she is being demanding, manipulative, and coercisive - but she didn't change the relationship. You did. Therefore, you have the majority responsibility to make it work if you truly want it to work.
I parsed Rebel's initial post very differently.
Rebel wrote:
30 Apr 2018, 12:39
It was my hope that when I resigned that my wife would follow
Rebel wrote:
30 Apr 2018, 12:39
She is still pushing for me to come back (rebaptized) or else .
One can hope that their spouse will follow them on their journey and still not be taking any actions to make that a reality. I didn't see in the initial post where Rebel said he was "taking her away from what works for her." Maybe there's more implied action in the initial post but I think there's a difference between hoping and taking action. I think many people on both sides of a mixed faith marriage hope that their spouse will come around all while continuing to support their spouse 100%. And of course there are people in mixed faith relationships that pressure their spouses to change. I see Rebel saying he hopes and I see Rebel saying his wife pushes... or else.

I'm sure resigning upped the tension. Still, can't someone resign and be supportive of their spouse in their beliefs?

I agree that I don't believe it's god that's doing this to families. I think it's more related to being a byproduct of fear. People want to protect their eternal family, they believe that remaining loyal to the church is requisite. When a family member isn't loyal to the church it threatens their eternal family. They're afraid. Not only for their eternal family, they also fear for the salvation of people they love. I don't think god places us in these situations, I think the situations are byproducts of believing in a god that prioritizes obedience and loyalty to the church.
You can't just have your characters announce how they feel... that makes me feel ANGRY!
— Robot Devil

Rebel
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Re: Hard to believe God is that cruel !

Post by Rebel » 01 May 2018, 10:05

Yes I still support her by attending with her, she however wants it all I.e. going to the temple with me by having my full membership back etc etc etc. The way I see it you can't have everything you want !

Roy
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Re: Hard to believe God is that cruel !

Post by Roy » 01 May 2018, 12:59

Hi Rebel,

I went back and read your old posts to get a better sense of "backstory" and where you are coming from.

1) I think it might be a great idea to give us an introduction with your history, how your faith crisis developed, how you came to the point of name removal etc. I am particularly interested to know what kind of communication you had with your spouse prior to the name removal and where she stood. Are there kids in the picture? are they grown?

2) It does not appear that your situation has changed very much in the 9 or so months since you found the Staylds site. You seem to have gone through periods where you made peace with the idea of rejoining the church and other periods where you feel resistant to that.

I feel that part of moving forward for you should be to make a plan and stick to it. If the plan is to be re-baptized then move forward with that. If the plan is to not become a member of the church but to attend as a non-member to support your wife (maybe have a calling in the scout program) then move forward with that. IF you are communicating to your wife on some days that you will be re-baptized and on other days that it is not fair that she require you to be re-baptized and that your personal integrity will not allow it.... IF that is the case then the emotional roller coaster ride is not fair to you OR your wife.

To help minimize the emotional ups and downs I recommend making a plan jointly with your spouse. If I were to make such a plan, I would try to not overcommit to things that might not be sustainable for me. I might commit to rebaptism and at least twice a month church attendance. I would commit to continue to live by the big church standards of chastity, WoW, etc. Tithing would be a hard one for me. I would probably be upfront with DW that "full tithe payment" might not work for me. I would be open to a very generous fast offering and support her in paying a full tithe on any income that she personally receives.

You cannot commit to any changes of belief now or in the future - but you can come up with a reasonable game plan of what you are willing to sustainably give and contribute with your current level of belief.

Whatever you and your spouse jointly decide - it needs to be a compromise you both can live with and then you need to do your best to stick to it.

I hope some of this helps in your situation.
"It is not so much the pain and suffering of life which crushes the individual as it is its meaninglessness and hopelessness." C. A. Elwood

“It is not the function of religion to answer all the questions about God’s moral government of the universe, but to give one courage, through faith, to go on in the face of questions he never finds the answer to in his present status.” TPC: Harold B. Lee 223

"I struggle now with establishing my faith that God may always be there, but may not always need to intervene" Heber13

Rebel
Posts: 27
Joined: 08 Jun 2017, 17:02

Re: Hard to believe God is that cruel !

Post by Rebel » 14 May 2018, 17:11

******* UPdate , My wife really surprised me after we attended sacrament. I told her the only way I would return to church is for her only !! She told me if that was my only reason to not come back to full membership. So for now I attend church with her we live the standards of the church in our home and still pray together which is what I always wanted until I figure all this out for myself. I am enjoying being a non member but have noticed some shunning at ⛪ Thoughts ?

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