why we leave

I stare at my blessing and read the lines over and over, wondering where the blessings are that are written so clearly. I believed it was inspiration, I don’t believe it was for the next life, which leaves me confused and sad. Did I mess something up somewhere?

So many are leaving, and I keep getting asked by leadership why, and the simple answer is:

there’s no more room for us here anymore.

Why are we separating people by marital status? College wards sure, but after college? Just mix all wards already – quit separating people by nationality and if they have the right ring on the right finger. Is the magic number 31? What if I’m 32 and don’t have a “family” for the family ward? I don’t have anywhere to go… and it’s an awkward place to be. The In-Between. When you “should” be a family but you still can’t make the Sunday pot roast because there’s only one of you and no one can or should eat a whole pot roast by themselves. Do you set the table for one? I run away from situations that point out the loneliness of being outside of that family unit we thought we would be in by now. Those traditions you love and long for will have to wait.

It’s obvious I don’t belong as I walk the halls and hear the title “mom” thrown everywhere and people question me why I have the wrong three letter title and care more about CEO that MOM. They don’t understand that I didn’t choose that title, I’ve just tried to choose the right, but that’s all that’s come.

“You realize you’ve waited too long, you’ll have to marry someone addicted to porn or divorced now.”

“You’re not fulfilling your purpose in life and shouldn’t care as much about worldly things. Your focus needs to change.”

Church leaders are sometimes really harsh without realizing it. But good intentions as poorly worded interviews push many away as we sit in the In-Between. My blessing says I’ll have children, I’ll teach them as I have been taught, my 33-year-old single woman uterus is nervous tho. I promised God a long time ago that I would do everything I could to take care of His children and I would have faith that He would take care of me. Maybe my faith has dwindled a bit in the In-Between.

Can you also please quit making policies that are hurting our friends? Many of us are leaving because our friends are hurting and we can’t stand to stay while they have to leave in pain. We want to be with them. Diversity helps us in the In-Between and we feel for each other in that unfair limbo many are in. God sure changes His mind quickly these days. Oh, that policy was man made….? But I thought God would never let His prophet lead His people astray? It was just him being racist? Those essays sure threw us for a loop in 2013.

I remember testifying about things as a missionary and feeling the spirit only to find out later through research and essays that some of what I had said wasn’t all true. The hat? Why did I have that picture of Jospeh translating the gold plates casually in view on his table in my scriptures as a missionary if it wasn’t even true? We are the generation that is finding truth online as the church owns its history more, which is good, but still is confusing. And sometimes I feel dumb I believed and testified about something so much to find out later more about the topic that has come out. New truths and explanations can come out… but not our friends. It’s rough here in the In-Between.

My 13 year old, 7th grade self was so concerned about polygamy and my wonderfully kind stake president who confirmed to me that God would never make me do anything that I didn’t want to do helped for some years. I felt peace then, but later felt icky hearing about early church leaders’ polygamous marriages and even now how husbands can remarry in the temple, making their dead first wives polygamous wives outside of their control.

We leave because we don’t fit in. We leave because we don’t have the right titles. We leave because it hurts to stay. We leave because we feel deceived. We leave because we loose hope in blessings promised that haven’t come. We leave because church isn’t the sanctuary of peace and safety we need it to be. We leave because we’re confused and aren’t sure who to talk to without appearing like an apostate. We leave because we don’t think anyone will notice, and then we don’t come back when no one does.

We get lost in the In-Between.

4 Comments Add yours

  1. Wow, I love this. I love how you openly ask these questions and then write them out. There are things I still wonder. And I’m grateful to have a chance to seek answers and wonder. Even among the judgement. I’m not perfect. I put family and work before going to church every Sunday. But I do believe in agency. And about the being sealed if a spouse passed away. I wonder how that works. As a older sister was recently sealed to a man that lost his wife. No shame in wondering and asking. And ty for this .

    Like

  2. Randall Wall says:

    I feel many of the same things except for those about divorce. That might be a little judgmental. (Same with porn too..we all go through challenges just because my sins are more kinder to me you know?)

    I to remember teaching the missionary lessons and seeing the picture of Joseph at the table. it was already weird enough that he spoke to an angel and got told him plates who cares about putting your face in a hat while I try to hide that?

    Blacks, the cross, jeans etc. Policy not doctrine. the problem these days is that a lot of policy seems to have the strength of doctrine.

    https://rsc.byu.edu/archived/our-rites-worship-latter-day-saint-views-ritual-history-scripture-and-practice/pouring-oil

    My personal thoughts have changed completely in that I do believe the prophet can lead us astray and has because he’s human. I also believe that he needs to say “thus saith the Lord” or words to that effect to let us know that he’s not talking for himself.

    Now I believe that the Book of Mormon is true, I believe this is Lord church, I seen many miracles, and only my mission I heard a Voice speak to me.

    I think the church needs to rethink a lot of things like why they spend so much time trying to identify what hot drinks are and yet they ignore idol worship in Asia by members and leaders.

    we all have our own cross to carry and they are just as human as everybody else. I think I’m more concerted effort needs to be made to show an acknowledged that and stop with this nonsense that the prophet won’t lead you astray.

    Joseph Smith said ” I’m only a prophet when I’m speaking as a prophet”.. I tend to agree.

    Like

  3. Randall Wall says:

    I feel many of the same things except for those about divorce. That might be a little judgmental. (Same with porn too..we all go through challenges just because my sins are more kinder to me you know?)

    I too remember teaching the missionary lessons and seeing the picture of Joseph at the table. it was already weird enough that he spoke to an angel and got goldd him plates ..who cares about putting your face in a hat and why try to hide that?

    Blacks, the cross, jeans etc. Policy not doctrine. the problem these days is that a lot of policy seems to have the strength of doctrine.

    https://rsc.byu.edu/archived/our-rites-worship-latter-day-saint-views-ritual-history-scripture-and-practice/pouring-oil

    My personal thoughts have changed completely in that I do believe the prophet can lead us astray (and has) because he’s human. I also believe that he needs to say “thus saith the Lord” or words to that effect to let us know that he’s not talking for himself.

    Now I believe that the Book of Mormon is true, I believe this is the Lords church, I have seen many miracles, and on my mission I heard a Voice speak to me.

    I think the church needs to rethink a lot of things like why they spend so much time trying to identify what hot drinks are and yet they ignore idol worship in Asia by members and leaders.

    We all have our own cross to carry and they are just as human as everybody else. I think a more concerted effort needs to be made to show and acknowledged that and stop with this nonsense that the prophet won’t lead you astray.

    Joseph Smith said ” I’m only a prophet when I’m speaking as a prophet”.. I tend to agree.

    Like

  4. Andrew Robinson says:

    Well said. . .Well thought out. . . we mortals, and our extreme distance from perfection, so mess things up so much of the time, for others, and for ourselves. I believe God and our guardian Angles are constantly modifying there plans of how to take get us back home and each modification it tailored to provide the best possible chance of bringing us back home while not violating the critical element of or progression, our agency.
    There will always a ton of reasons to leave. That’s the agency an options thing. Everyone regardless of status will always have many reasons to leave. With agency, that’s just how it is and the way it was planned from the very beginning. For me, my reasons for staying are simple and they always trump any and all my reasons for leaving.
    I am a child of God, and he has sent me here. The restored Gospel of Jesus Christ is the only place that I find the real reason why I’m here. And that is to learn to be like him and ultimately, thought the atonement of Jesus Christ, if I never quit, never give up on myself, I can be like him some day. That’s it, and it’s only found in the restored gospel. And it’s offered to everyone who has ever lived and who will ever live. And it’s forever. That to me is the charity, the pure love of Christ, the pure love of our Heavenly Father. To somehow, in spite of ourselves, help us come home, and not only be with him, but be like him. . .having progressed to perfection!!!

    Like

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