Nervous to say hi.....

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Nervous to say hi.....

Post by Spocklover » 04 Sep 2017, 17:57

Ok I am finally doing it....saying hi.

I have been stalking for maybe 6 months now? Finally set up an account a bit ago but have been dragging my heels about posting. Partly because I don't know what to say and partly because I feel like I have already come out the other side of my faith crisis and I don't want to drag it all out again. But I want to be a full on member of the group so I guess I gotta talk!

Some background. My family left the church soon after I was baptized. My mom was a member, my dad was not when they met. They decided they wanted a church for the kids and figured this was good enough. Sealed when I was a year old. But they never felt like it fit. They got very fed up with the Mormon culture and called it quits. In high school I started hanging out with some mormon girls and enjoyed them. Even though I wasn't active I still upheld a lot of the values so it was nice finding people of a similar mind. I started going to stake dances and slowly became fully active on my own. I felt the Spirit so strong during this journey and knew it was for me. The problem is I just jumped in head first, I realize now I should have taken my time. Anyways, went to BYU-I, met my husband and we were married 4 months after our first date. Honeymoon baby and moved to Utah soon after. This was the start of my issues.

As soon as I came back to church I felt the need to fit in. This is a common issue for me in all areas of my life. I started dressing just like everyone else, took up scrapbooking, sewing, playdates etc. I thought to be a good mormon I had to look and act like everyone else. This triggered serious depression that I deal with to this day. Post partum issues included in there too. For years I have tried to fit in and make friends but I am very shy and have social anxiety so this is hard. Worrying about what other people thought about me had an influence in every since decision I made. It has been an up and down rollercoaster.

Fast forward to this past February, I went on a girls weekend to Vegas with my best friend. Something snapped in me. I was so sick of my life and wanted to be out having fun with everyone else. I was sick and tired of people telling me what to do and not to do. As soon as I got back I started some serious thinking about my life. I used to drink coffee and struggle wanting it so much all the time. I am tempted a lot with alcohol. Never had any but something in my brain tells me I want it. I was furious there were people telling me I can't. Things that had never bothered me in the church suddenly drove me crazy. I felt like I was questioning the last 10 years of my life. The biggest triggers for me were Mormon culture issues. Living in the area I do, there is a high concentration for members and it can really get to me. There is a lot of judging and false doctrine going around. I hate the idea that everyone needs to be the same to be "worthy". Things have to be done a certain way even if there is no doctrine to back it up.

Anyways for a while I pulled away from the church. I needed a break. All this was causing me to fall back into a major depression. Thankfully I have a really great bishopric counselor who was very understanding (didn't go into detail, just a tiny bit about my depression) and made it possible for me to be released from my calling. I stopped doing VT, calling, activities, only went to sacrament here and there. I just felt like I couldn't think straight while being that involved in things. I started realizing that I had become so involved in going through the motions I had lost sight of WHY. I lost sight of my faith. I started going on a lot of hikes and soon found nature to be my temple. It was the one place I could feel HIS comfort and love, over any other place. I had never felt comfortable in the temple, whole other story. But I could feel peace in the wind through the trees and the birds chirping. I started trying to let myself out of my shell. I dyed the tips of my hair turquoise, silly but I had always wanted to do it but was afraid. It was very liberating! I slowly started realizing how blind I had been to the people around me and that I too had been a part of the judgemental bubble. It was a very hard thing to realize and admit. I started finding joy in being myself and appreciating the unique people around me.

I also slowly started finding that I could still be a part of the church and be myself. I started saying no more, being ok with staying home sometimes to have family time, and just being my own kind of Mormon. My husband is actually very happy with this. He has always been more of this type of mormon and I have pushed him to fit in more. I used to get mad when he didn't do all his HT, didn't shave etc. Now we are more on the same page and it has helped in our marriage. We are a bit more on the same page. I am still not a in a calling, I don't want to jump back into that too soon. I still have doubts but I am working through them while still attending. There is probably a lot I am leaving out but I don't want this to be crazy long.

I will say this page has been a lifesaver for me. I am not sure if I could still be a part of the church without it. It is amazing to know there are people out there that are like me. That I am not alone in my unorthodox thoughts. I am going to try my best to start commenting and not just reading posts. Try.....

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Re: Nervous to say hi.....

Post by hawkgrrrl » 04 Sep 2017, 19:17

Welcome to the site! We're glad you're here. It's very freeing to finally decide to be yourself in the church. To paraphrase something someone told me on my mission: "Your mission is between you & God. Everyone else is just here to do paperwork." Wise words, and they apply equally to being in the church.

Our ward split a year ago which I took pretty hard because we had a lot of friends in that ward, and it felt like I could say what I thought and be accepted. People weren't that judgmental. A woman from my old ward came up to me on Sunday and hugged me. She said how much they missed having me in the ward, and that it would be nice if more people were just themselves. She said they missed my comments and input in the classes where I always had thought provoking things to say that were all me.

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Re: Nervous to say hi.....

Post by Curt Sunshine » 04 Sep 2017, 19:23

Welcome. I am glad you decided to introduce yourself.
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.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken

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Re: Nervous to say hi.....

Post by Spocklover » 04 Sep 2017, 19:38

Hawkgirl- actually I forgot to mention our Ward split. That happened almost 2 years ago and majorly affected me. All my friends were put in the other ward and I got put in with the old school, cultural mormon, clique group. It has been a serious struggle to fit in with them. There are a few of us on the outside, I am trying to make friends with them. But I hate sittijg in church feeling lonely, especially in RS.

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Re: Nervous to say hi.....

Post by Rebel » 04 Sep 2017, 23:40

Welcome !! For the most part this site is non judgemental. As it should be . I struggle with coffee myself alcohol not an issue church history very much an issue. I have TBM spouse so my life is difficult to say the least . This is a good place to relax and discuss sensitive topics without fear. Once again welcome !!


Re: Nervous to say hi.....

Post by Falcon20Commander » 05 Sep 2017, 04:38


We have that one thing in common—wanting to be ourselves. It is the most free feeling one can enjoy in my opinion. And if we need to change, changing for God and God only is true change. I loved reading your story. Thank you.

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Re: Nervous to say hi.....

Post by LookingHard » 05 Sep 2017, 06:31

Welcome! I am glad you joined in. I am not one of the REAL old-timers on this site, but I think I have been here enough years to be called a regular.

For any other lurkers, stick your toe into the water and say HI! Most all of you have not used your real names, so just join in a bit. You may find you can learn a bit more interacting and I am sure others can learn from you.

OK. I am stepping off my "stayLDS missionary" soapbox. :-)

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Re: Nervous to say hi.....

Post by dande48 » 05 Sep 2017, 08:10

Hi Spocklover,

Live long and prosper! I'm glad you decided to join us. I, too, have struggled with serious depression and anxiety, which used to be exacerbated during sacrament meeting, even while I was a TBM. I even had a Bishop who gave me permission to leave Church early when I was having "difficulties". He was a very kind and understanding man, and I appreciated his approach. It was a tough thing to deal with. Here's a few things that have helped me:

1. Reject the traditional religious stance on mental illness. I HATE religion's approach to mental illness. We're not possessed, we're not sinners. God's not punishing us, or putting us through this "trial" according to His will. Bad things happen. Sometimes there's no explaination, and that's okay! Take the "Spock" approach, and view it through pragmatic, logical lens. It's just a chemical imbalance, and a few synapsis nothing more.

2. Cold showers. Ice cold. In my personal experience, no medication, priesthood blessing, or counselling has been able to make a dent (sometimes, it's made it worse). But ice cold showers have been a miracle worker. It's a tough thing to adjust your body for, but when I made it a religious habit to take a cold shower every morning, I saw a remarkable improvement to my mental health.

As a side note, has anyone heard of or played, "The Beginner's Guide"? We were talking about video games a while back, and this one just came to mind. It's a short 2 hour journey, about a young man trying to understand a friend through his work. In dealing with mental illness, this is one of the first times in my life, I actually felt like there was someone I could relate to; someone who understood what I was feeling. I highly recommend giving it a look.

One last thing, I just wanted to mention. You said you've been craving both coffee and alcohol. For most of the commandments, I think the Church really needs to break away from the "Because God (we) said so" mentality. Any commandment worth keeping is good, regardless of what God or the Church Authorities have to say about it. With that in mind, I think most of the commandments required for a temple recommend are still excellent precepts to keep. It's a choice you need to make, personally, for yourself. But there are still very good reasons for staying away from coffee and alcohol. The Church can be a very mixed bag, but be careful not to toss out the good with the bad.

I'm happy your here, and look forward to learning more about you.
"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."
-Lemony Snicket

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Re: Nervous to say hi.....

Post by Roy » 05 Sep 2017, 09:06

Welcome Spocklover,

Yes, church culture is a hard one. This topic is perhaps the best place to practice cafeteria Mormonism. Just be yourself and if anybody calls you on it you can say something like, "I'm just not taking (insert cultural practice) so seriously" or "I don't really feel that (insert cultural practice) affects my salvation or relationship with my Savior."

Two things that have helped me to stay LDS are boundaries and diversification.

1) I feel that it is important to establish boundaries. This can be important for your well being. It can be as simple as not accepting a call to work in primary or not going to help people move (if those things happen to be the bane of your church existence).

2) Diversification for me is about not putting all my eggs in one basket. Church can become suffocating if it permeates every aspect of my life. I love to have non-church friends, non-church hobbies, non-church service. It helps to keep me balanced. LDS does not control my life, it is just a church that I go to.

Welcome to the group.
"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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Re: Nervous to say hi.....

Post by DarkJedi » 05 Sep 2017, 15:19

Welcome to the forum and thanks for introducing yourself - it's always helpful to know where people are coming from. I'm glad you found us and glad we've been of some help.
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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