Turning My Brain On

sent in by Sandy

I grew up Mormon, which was not a good experience. I was born to a single teenage mother and was then adopted by my great-grandparents who did love me very much. But as a child born to an unwed mother I was automatically labeled as a bad kid. I remember when I was about 11 I started asking questions. Looking back I realize how much my Great-grandmother really loved me. I asked why the doctrine didn't make sense, and she simple said she didn't know. At home I never got in trouble for asking questions.

Around the same time some of my friends would invite me to their churches, and Mama (great-granma) would let me go. To Mormons that is a big no-no. You see people might get ideas and slowly start thinking for themselves. One Sunday I went to the Baptist church and was given the oh so lovely "your Mormon parent is going to hell" speech. Real nice thing to tell a kid.

Well I was a pretty shy kid with a vicious temper. I got expelled from Jr. High, and needless to say good Mormon girls never get in fights (or stand up for themselves) so I got labeled retarded trouble maker. (they thought I was retarded because of my shyness). I tended to ignore the other youth as I grew up and viewed church as something I had to bear with until I turned 18.

At 17 Mama passed away, Papa had passed when I was 6. I lived with a Mormon friend of mamma's for a year before I got fed up and walked 6 miles to the next town. Mama left me property there when she passed. I lived on the property in a travel trailer for a few months, and then met my first boyfriend. I was 19. I felt soooo guilty when I had sex for the first time. In fact fact I was miserable through the whole relationship.

I then moved to a small town in New Mexico. Where at 21 I met my second boyfriend. Once again I always felt guilty about sex. And this time things got a lot more complicated. I got pregnant. Then the loving Mormons excommunicated me. Also my boyfriend left town. Permanently. So I was faced with being pregnant, jobless, and soon homeless. My landlord was Mormon and was one of the people who had me excommunicated. Well at this time I met a pastor and his wife. Who are actually very kind hearted people. They helped my pay for the gas to be hooked up so I could move into the low income housing, and let me stay in their home over that Thanksgiving weekend.

I was not expected to go to church on Sunday, so I decided to go. And In my loneliness and desperation I became a Christian. And soon I learned how selfish Christians could be. I saw that they behaved no differently from the Mormons I knew. The pastor noticed that there are a lot of single parent families in the community and wanted to do something to help. He talked to the board about starting a small storehouse with diapers, childrens clothing, and toys. The board said they didn't see where it was their job to help the community. Within three months they had gotten rid of the pastor. It was a terrible thing to witness.

I then joined a Pentecostal church. What a shock that was to me! I had never seen people act so stupid in public before. All that talking in gibberish and rolling around on the floor! And then I got in trouble for nursing my newborn in the sanctuary! Which is pretty sad because I had my baby under a blanket. And then the pastor had a get rid of members who ask questions crusade. Please pardon spelling.

I then decided to go the Baptist church. Which I stayed at for a little over a year. I left before they could kick me out. (the shy girl was slowly dying) I kept asking why the Bible said one thing and they said it meant the opposite.

Then I became involved in the messianic movement. My child was then 2. The rabbi said he welcomed questions. But he didn't like ones that challenged the dogma or his authority. And the congregation did not like having a single never been married mother in there midst. They didn't like that I was on welfare, because they are to few jobs where I live.

About a year ago my kid began asking me some tough questions that I just couldn't give a good answer to. One of the best examples was, "Mommy why can't we eat pork?" and then I heard some friends talking about how women should know their place in church, family, and society. I saw my daughter listening in and felt a cold chill. I didn't want her to grow up thinking she is second place to a man. So for about 8 months I did a lot of studying and thinking, and figured out that a loving and caring god would not behave in such a manner.

About 2 months ago I met a guy. He is now a friend. I have had sex with him and for the first time felt no guilt. I am currently jobless again, but now I am not relying on an imaginary character to gain me employment. I rely on my own intelligence. And come spring I will be going to college! I am thinking of becoming an English or History teacher. I am so glad that I am now thinking for myself.

Joined: 21
Left: 27
Was: moron-er Mormon, Christian, messyantics-er messianic
Now: capable of using brain
Converted out of desperation
De-converted because: started thinking

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