At just 19 years old I became a mother to a perfect little girl. I quickly married the father months before. Being raised in an LDS family my desire was to get married in the temple a year later. I soon realized this was not my spouse’s desire. Finding myself in an abusive relationship I went to my bishop, I went to counselors, and I went to my knees for guidance and safety.
At just 21 years old I became a single mother. I was in a place of self-hatred knowing my mistakes led me to fail the perfect plan. Most crippling was the pain and guilt I felt for disappointing my Heavenly Father.
It has been three years since I left my abuser and two since I left the church. In this time I have felt freedom from guilt, anxiety, shame, and judgment. I no longer punish myself for falling short of perfection. With this new found autonomy I choose to go wherever I feel love, happiness, and fulfillment. That may be camping on Sunday or it may be having Sunday dinner with loved Mormon friends and family. The choice is mine.

These are stories of health and happiness outside the Mormon church.

Join the discussion and submit your profile here.

The Simple Life

At the age of 9 I was baptized into the Mormon Church with the rest of my family after having met with missionaries. I was an on again off again member for a while until 2001 when my family and I were sealed together in the Salt Lake Temple. From there I was a fully...

Those who wander are not always lost

In response to "where will you go?" I say, "those who wander are not always lost," and there is "joy in the journey." The first part is a popular quote from J.R.R. Tolkien, the second part is from the 1998 EFY theme and together they sum up what my spiritual journey...

I can finally enjoy life

I left the LDS church 7 years ago. In that time I have become my genuine self, made lasting and beautiful friendships with people who love me unconditionally, gotten married to the love of my life, and had a gorgeous and healthy child. I don't judge others as harshly...

Towards Love, Authenticity, and a Genuine Daily Life

10 years ago as a gay, newly divorced father of four and former Mormon, where I would go and what I would do was indeed the looming question. A lifetime of seminary, sunday school, priesthood, mission, BYU and church leadership had me imagining myself at best as a...

I will find happiness

The Mormon church has been apart of my family for generations and I would say it is still a part of my culture. I learned a lot of things from being an active member, a bishop’s daughter, and a youth leader. I learned to how to be confident speaking in front of a...

Losing my religion wasn’t the end

The Mormon faith has always been a strong influence in my life and upbringing. However at a young age, I chose to become inactive. I was a very confused young adult with a lot of questions. The answer I was given: to pray... which I did but I still felt very unsure...