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Hello, my name is Longbottom...

Posted: 25 Sep 2017, 13:58
by longbottom
The most serious faith crisis of my life began a few months ago. I have no problem with church doctrine or historical issues, fine with JS, fine with Book of Abraham, fine with just about everything. Except that I couldn't stand God and "His ways" (It's a long story. I had serious father issues growing up, and am a middle-aged man now). My faith in God degraded until a few days ago, I broke down and told my TBM (but open-minded) wife all about my issues. She was immensely supportive, and agreed that I had every reason to feel the ways I do. She gave me space and understanding, and I know that not all have the advantage of such a supportive spouse! Two days ago, I found StayLDS. It changed my life immediately. I had no idea that there so were many others with the exact same issues as me! Needless to say, I've been reading a LOT.

I knew I didn't want to leave the church, but what choice did I have since I couldn't even pray anymore without getting angry? StayLDS has shown me that there is a place for me in the church, even if I am struggling with some things. I want to thank those current and past contributors who have helped me to understand and embrace a new world of depth and understanding about how we wanderers can still find a place in a religious culture that is part of who we are, whether we love it or hate it, and whether we are "all in" or not.

I hope to share more of my story over time here, as it's an interesting (if not squeamish at times) life history, and one that others who have encountered childhood trauma and are still having issues as an adult may relate with. I have found that for myself and for many child victims, it's even that much harder to see God as anything but punitive in nature. And there are some bad people in the church (and good people who naively say or do damaging things) whos actions have dire consequences for their victims' spiritual well-being. Especially when the damage is when they are young.

Again, looking forward to participating. I love the attitude of love and acceptance here. Even though it's mostly anonymous, it's refreshing to see so many who are suffering be able to have a place to feel welcome.

Re: Hello, my name is Longbottom...

Posted: 25 Sep 2017, 14:09
by Heber13
Glad you are here to join the conversations. Welcome!

Re: Hello, my name is Longbottom...

Posted: 25 Sep 2017, 14:26
by Roy
Welcome Longbottom,
I am glad that you decided to join the conversation. I am very sorry for your formative experiences and I agree that our vision of God is heavily influenced by our relationship with our parents.

I pray that you can find a measure of peace in sharing your story and in taking a more purposeful role in redefining your understanding of God.

Roy

Re: Hello, my name is Longbottom...

Posted: 25 Sep 2017, 17:49
by Beefster
Welcome to the forum. I hope the best in your quest for peace and new perspectives.

I'm not sure this relates at all, but one of my personal points of my current faith crisis is the obedience narrative. It doesn't jive well with my personal understanding of God as someone who wants us to figure things out for ourselves and make our own choices. I don't like much of the Old Testament primarily due to it portraying God as a petty, obedience-obsessed punisher of rebellious souls. I also think most of Genesis is allegory or hyperbole.

I wish there were more places to turn for faith crisis support. I opened up to my ARP group yesterday, but that's about it. I can't bring it up with my mom; any time I show even the slightest sign of apostasy, she spirals into a vortex of worry.

Re: Hello, my name is Longbottom...

Posted: 25 Sep 2017, 18:34
by dande48
Welcome Longbottom! Happy you could join us. I look forward to hearing the rest of your story; past, present and future.

Re: Hello, my name is Longbottom...

Posted: 25 Sep 2017, 18:39
by LookingHard
Welcome Longbottom! I hope you find some peace in your life and I hope this site helps.

Your few sentences do remind me of something I recall hearing. It was that people often frame God in the way that their parent (especially their father) is. So someone with a very loving and lenient parent generally pictures God the same and someone that has a harsh and/or punishing father will think of God as harsh and punishing.

Pardon my arm-chair therapy, but I do think that therapy can be very helpful and it seems like you have some deep issues. I do hope you can heal.

And tell your wife you love her so much for her wonderful reaction.

Re: Hello, my name is Longbottom...

Posted: 26 Sep 2017, 14:54
by DarkJedi
Welcome. I think my story is similar to yours. I never had a problem with history, BoM, BoA, JS, etc., and I really still don't although I view them differently than I once did. When I first came here I called what my problems were "doctrinal." But they weren't that either - they are really cultural. Once I discovered I don't have to believe in the God of the Lost Car Keys and many other things associated with culture/tradition/etc., church became a whole lot easier.

I agree with you, this is a great little branch of the church. I hope to hear more from you.

Re: Hello, my name is Longbottom...

Posted: 29 Sep 2017, 13:38
by nibbler
longbottom wrote:
25 Sep 2017, 13:58
I hope to share more of my story over time here, as it's an interesting (if not squeamish at times) life history, and one that others who have encountered childhood trauma and are still having issues as an adult may relate with. I have found that for myself and for many child victims, it's even that much harder to see God as anything but punitive in nature.
I know something of childhood trauma myself. I don't know whether our paths have overlapped in any way but my life experiences colored my perceptions in such a way that I began to recognize abusive patterns in my conceptualization of god. I even saw abusive patterns in facets of the orthodox conceptualization of god.

I know it' hard to see god as anything but punitive when you've had experiences like that. I found that I needed to challenge my conceptualization of god, which could be described as a faith crisis.

You aren't alone, neither am I. I can't say it's been a fun path but attempting to walk the path has helped me discover a more loving god.

Re: Hello, my name is Longbottom...

Posted: 03 Oct 2017, 13:25
by LDS_Scoutmaster
Glad you found this safe place. Having a spot to bounce ideas and concerns and get some really great feedback has both helped me and broadened my understanding. I also want to thank everyone for your comments and support.

Re: Hello, my name is Longbottom...

Posted: 03 Oct 2017, 14:00
by Heber13
LDS_Scoutmaster wrote:
03 Oct 2017, 13:25
I also want to thank everyone for your comments and support.
Thank you for yours, and for stopping by. :wave: