I am not LDS, but I grew up a very religious person, putting all I had into my beliefs for many years of my life. As I got older, the dichotomies of my inner self began to tug at one another. On the one hand, I truly believed my religion and all the values I had grown up with. On the other hand, I didn’t want to follow them anymore.
I felt, as one of the individuals in the article “Losing Faith” [Jan. 12, City Weekly] said, the harder I tried, the harder it got. Eventually, I left and was disfellowshipped from my congregation for a lack of repentance.
Like many of the people in the article expressed, I, too, tried to hide who I was for fear of losing my family. But because of my decisions, that was eventually the result. My parents and sister had very limited contact with me, and there were family members and friends who I didn’t talk to for over a year. It may have been the hardest time of my life. During my detour in life, I learned many lessons, most of them the hard way.
But one thing I did learn and want to express to people who may not understand is: When your family chooses their religion and their God over you, are you really going to criticize them for that? In my case, ultimately I turned my back on God, my creator. I turned my back on everything he had done for me. My family did not, so why would I ever be angry or bitter at them for following their hearts and staying true to what they believed in?
People are allowed to believe what they want. I’m not criticizing atheists; we just have different opinions, which all are entitled to—free will, baby. But that goes for your families, too. So if they choose to believe something you don’t agree with, and choose to not have a relationship with someone they find discouraging, why would you criticize them for doing what they need to do to stay happy and content?
Salt Lake City