I find it so interesting that many (not all) mormons think that those of us who have left the church have left for silly reasons, like wanting to drink alcohol or having sex with lots of people, just to name a few. And sadly, this is not an exaggeration.
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Because I knew that leaving the church would not only effect me, it was not easy. It effected my marriage, my children, and many relationships with close friends. It was a process that took some time. Much thought, processing, and realizations went into my decision to leave my faith. It was not an easy decision.
I share this particular vlog with you so you can maybe get a glimpse into a particular tradition in mormonism, that I can no longer be a part of. Temple marriage. By leaving my faith I can no longer enter the temple, a place where mormons are married and sealed for time and all eternity. This is very important to mormons. It is the epitome of family togetherness and symbolizes the plan of salvation, a belief that mormon families will be together forever in the afterlife.
Now that I am no longer a member I will not be able to participate in this ritual. I was faced with this reminder this summer as my mother was married to her honey, in the Newport Beach, CA temple. It was the first time a member of my immediate family (MY OWN MOM) was getting married and I was not allowed to witness it. I, of course, was not going to stay away away and so I decided to stay on the temple grounds and tend the small children, too young to be in the temple, outside while the marriage was taking place.
It is a strange experience to be an outsider now. Not an outsider to my family, but to the event of a temple wedding. Knowing what happens inside, knowing the thoughts, feelings, and emotions that occur while a temple wedding is being performed. Seeing the love and happiness on my mom and her new husband’s faces as they exited the temple and were hugged and loved by those who experienced the ceremony with them. There is an undeniable bond that is real among most mormons. The belief of forever families is a beautiful one. But as I sat back and watched this experience unfold, I felt like an outsider. It was really a surreal feeling.
So, back to my point. I share this vlog with you so maybe you can get a glimpse into the thoughts and feelings associated with exiting the mormon faith. It is not something that I made flippantly, but it is a decision I stand behind.
Hugs and love to those of you who are going through or who have gone through a similar experience. Thank you for reading and watching. I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences as well. Please sign up for my newsletter ~ I am working on getting it all together as we speak.
I’m Amy Wengreen.
I’ve been a mom for fifteen years, an artist & entrepreneur for twelve — and a Soul Searching Girl, for ten.
Not long ago, I left my church, my identity — and what I thought was the truth — in the dust.
This is the story of how I fell wide awake, and reinvented my spiritual wheel.
Because God is just a three-letter word for what's Real.