Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Leaving the church

Thanks to all the people who leave comments on my blog. Elbow left this comment on my blog: "I think that leaving the Church is just as huge as coming out to your parents." It made me think about my reasons for leaving the Mormon Church and I decided to create a post about it since I've already talked about coming out to my parents.

It's kind of hard for me to explain just how big a deal it is to leave the church. I was raised Mormon until I left home at 23, so it's all I knew growing up. My parents and seven siblings are all still in the church and believe that I will not be able to live with them forever if I don't follow the teachings of the church. It is a huge disappointment to them that I no longer attend church or have a testimony(belief that the Mormon Church is true). When I go home I feel like an outsider with my family members.

At the same time for me it was not a big issue at all. I never developed a testimony like so many other gay Mormons out there, so I didn't have to ever reconcile my testimony with my feelings for guys. Not that I didn't go through a period of self-doubt and wishing I could be straight and normal, but that didn't take too long to resolve. It just didn't make sense to me that the church could teach that acting on gay feelings could be wrong since I didn't choose to be gay.

Eventually I came up with the plan that as soon as I came home from my mission and moved away from home that I would stop going to church. When I moved to Ohio in 2004 I went to church here for about two months and then I found gay friends to hang out with so I stopped going to church because I didn't need the instant friends that I gained by going to church. I also had to stop caring about what my Mormon classmates thought about me, which wasn't that hard since I had just met them a couple of months prior. As soon as I was ready to not care about what my family thought of me, I came out to them and told them what I thought of the church. I knew I had to do it because making them happy was not worth lying to them anymore. I am really happy with my decision to come out to them. I am so happy now that I don't have to waste my time going to church. I still believe in God and will always try to be a good person, but I don't need to go to church to do that.

11 comments:

not me said...

you have a family in ohio that love you :)

Chris said...

Yup.

Why Read Shitty Books said...

Your Inspiring Dave. “Finally shall come the poet worthy that name, The true son of God shall come singing his songs. -Passage indeed O soul to primal thought, Not lands and seas alone, thy own clear freshness, The young maturity of blood and bloom, To realms of budding bibles.” Walt Whitman.

~The Modern Tragedy said...

cheers to your delight:)

Jimmy Stewart said...

Having a real relationship with your family, even if its strained, is better than an uncontentious but false one.

keepchanging said...

Not going to church will definitely come in handy when studying for boards. ;-)

Sorry, don't mean to be glib. I'm glad to hear that you feel good about where you are now. And I do wish you well on your boards!!!

All the best--
-L-

Sanjida said...

Nothing was more freeing than taking off the headscarf, even though I would have argued otherwise 6 years ago (to be "good"). So I hope you find freedom in this decision. You can only grow from here.

alexgarcia@gmail.com said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

You wrote:

"I never developed a testimony like so many other gay Mormons out there, so I didn't have to ever reconcile my testimony with my feelings for guys."

It's not fair to say that so many other gay Mormons never developed a testimony. There are plenty that have developed a testimony and live true to it, regardless of difficulties. You've chosen not to, but not everyone else has made the same choice.

Dave said...

You read the sentence wrong. I said, "I never developed a testimony like so many other gay Mormons out there" meaning I never had a testimony, unlike so many gay Mormons who did develop a testimony.

A said...

Dave I have a huge favor to ask of you and I hope it is okay. I am a regular subscriber to your blog, i read it on my google reader but I am in the process of cleaning up my internet footprint and for some reason I made a comment on this blog a long time ago and used my email. So is it possible for you to delete my post I am Alex and my post starts with "I think its awesome that I found your blog and that your mormon or exmormon"

I am just trying to minimize what my future employers might find. Thanks

Alex