Tuesday, April 6, 2010

To Blog or Not to Blog...

There have been a few commenters who would rather talk about what they think of me than actually discuss the content of each thread so here is a thread to do just that.

I am happy to discuss the idea that a blog such as mine may be a complete waste of time, or... it may actually be useful to myself and possibly some others.



  1. Well Maureen, since you ask,

    I think you are a wonderful person! Kind, generous, honest, beautiful, thoughtful, witty and funny.

    And, I wish you would spend MORE time on this blog! You don't know how disappointed I am when I come here and there is nothing new!

    There are thousands of blogs around I find uninteresting or even offensive, but why would I choose to read any of those???

    I am almost inspired to start writing my own blog, for the obvious cathartic benefits alone, but I don't because I could never compete with your wonderful writing style.

    Congratulations for turning a somewhat passive Aetheist into an educated one!

    Thank God I'm an Aetheist (and not a lunatic religious zealot!)

  2. I think perhaps the problem which we run into as Mormons is that information is judged, not based on whether is has value or not, but purely on the source.

    For instance... If the prophet, apostle or other GA said it, then it must be true.

    If an atheist or scientist said it, then there is a good chance it's false.

    The facts just don't seem to matter very much.

    I once shared a quote with a friend by Heather Armstrong of dooce.com fame. It was a good quote and relevant to something they were experiencing, and their immediate response was... But she's an anti-Mormon!

    The reason these commenters attack you instead of refuting your arguments, falls exactly in line with that. If they can somehow prove that you're a bad person, or boring or whatever else their little minds can concoct, then any argument or point you make about polygamy becomes invalid.

    As an aside, I think books like In Sacred Lonliness and Rough Stone Rolling, while written by faithful LDS authors are not generally recommended to the the greater membership. Sure they're sold by Deseret Book, but you'll never see them advertised at the front of the store or front page of a catalog. I think the reason the Church has allowed them to be published is purely for the "See, we're not really hiding anything" excuse.

  3. So glad to no longer be Mormon!
    Your blog is great Maureen, and so are you.
    I guess we just need to feel sorry for the critics out there. After all, we can both remember being in their scared little shoes! Too afraid to question what we were being taught, and so busy with all the church stuff we had to do that there was no time to look beneath the surface to see if what we were being force-fed was true! I spent decades trying to convince myself it was true. Still a bit hard to take that it's not, but in spite of regular visits to the FARMS website to check out the veracity of disturbing stuff that I hear, all I find is excuses that I wouldn't accept from a teenager. I am happy to read church sources, but no longer happy to accept them without looking furter. A part of me would still love to find out the church is true, but every time I research (on church websites) I come up with the afore-mentioned excuses.
    Hopefully others will have the courage to read your blog and research it for themselves so that they can actually know what is true rather than being spoonfed whatever.

  4. Complete waste of time filled with hate & bigotry towards Mormons.

  5. Thanks TGIAA, I am especially chuffed by your compliments of my writing style, I think I am very undisciplined in this area but I'm glad that you like it :)

    Great points Koda. I'll try to remember not to take the personal criticisms to hard. I am just so stubbornly used to thinking that people can see past the vessel to the 'facts' or at least try to think about things for themselves rather than accept what the church says happened.

    If even one Mormon is encouraged to just question even some of the things at church then I feel that blogs like this one are of use. If there is a God I am sure that he would want us to ask questions. I am sure that he/she would want us to seek out the truth.

    I do not hate any Mormons commenter No. 4
    I disagree with the Mormon religion and I am very mad at Joseph Smith and anyone else who lied.

    Commenter no. 5 and 8 from 'Lying by Omission': I am happy to clear any of your comments unless you threaten myself or others. I have only deleted that one comment. As for your other comments. I try to keep this blog as a small part of my life and I try to manage my time effectively. Do you know me personally? If so it seems a little cowardly to attack me here as an anonymous commenter. You said that I am foul mouthed and that I set a bad example to my kids...Being foul mouthed can be fun, you should give it a try, it's very therapeutic ;) and I don't do it in front of my kids but when they are older I hope that I will be well practiced enough for them to learn by example from me the wheres/whens/hows of letting out that well time 'fuck!'

  6. I had an interesting conversation last night in which I was made more aware of the way some Mormons feel when they read my blog. It can feel very personal for them even though I keep saying that I am not angry at them I am angry at the church and it's founders.

    I realised that for Mormons who knew me personally it is hard for them not to feel as though I am speaking to them, in quite a personal way. They know who has written this and they used to know me as a steadfast Mormon. It would be very different from my experience of reading all of this information at my own pace and from authors that I do not know personally.

    So, although I feel that the pain is a necessary part of confronting reality... I also feel sorrow that I have put something out there that has resulted in pain for other people.

    DH tells me that I really haven't talked very much about the pain that I experienced (and still experience) whilst trying to stay and then knowing I had to leave. It hurt a lot. I will try to describe that a little more in the future as that will explain why I am even doing any of this.

  7. I think your blog is valuable as both a cathartic exercise for you personally, and as a way of promoting dialogue on difficult issues. On the other hand, I disagree with a number of your conclusions, and I hope you don't mind me popping in occasionally to throw in my two cents worth.
    To be brutally honest, I think the way you choose to express yourself is sometimes ill-considered, and provokes responses you probably never intended; I also think that's to be expected, given your previous emotional investment in Mormonism.
    I am slightly worried that some of the interaction here may hinder rather than aid your ability to process a lot of these thoughts and feelings, but I think the net result for you will still be positive.
    I do take exception to the generalisations occasionally made by some of the commenters here; maybe I'm deluding myself, but I certainly don't regard myself as a lunatic zealot, brainwashed or small-minded. I pride myself on being rather intelligent and well-informed, and I don't think I'm a particularly unique specimen among Mormondom either.

  8. Thank you Cavalcanti. I am very pleased to have your 'voice' here. Especially as I know that my efforts so far have been quite emotionally charged and probably not as well thought out as they could be. I thought you might soon tire of my ramblings but here you are :)

    I think you are right about the use of terms like zealot and brainwashing being a result of being emotionally charged at the time of writing. I think that people are thinking of all of the terrible things done in the name of religion when they/I say these things. I myself wrote about these ideas as I felt that I actually had allowed myself to be brainwashed, shunning outside info and clinging to the words of the prophets.

    As for you, I have had a number of people comment to me outside of the blog saying that they think Cavalcanti is really great, they love having your side of things explained here and I really doubt that anyone would assign any of the above labels to you.

    I think that there are many intelligent, thoughtful Mormons out there and anyone who thinks otherwise might like to check out feministmormonhousewives.org (there's a link on the side of this blog.. and there are many other great mormon blogs worth checking out that don't just tow the line). I would just comment there to get my frustrations out but I think I'm a bit too explosive at the moment and at least readers here kind of expect that from me for now.

    I like one of the first things you said about 'promoting dialogue on difficult issues'. I think that this something that I would like to see more of for many aspects of my life and on a bigger scale in many other arenas around the world. Communication is where it is at. We as humans often misunderstand each other and in order to avoid terrible fall outs we must communicate again and again and again... much like the ancient Greeks... talk, talk,talk... and then act responsibly.

    If I am being unfair I know that Cavalcanti will give me a nudge and I hope that anonymous no.4 (and any future critics) will try to address the actual issues in the future as I would be very happy to correct any misinformation here.

  9. Be Angry at Joseph Smith to yourself not to the whole world . You have the problem with him not everyone does. In a sense you are brain washing people that joseph Smith is a fake. Get on with life and enjoy it.

  10. You are under no obligation to take on my beliefs when you come here and read about them. I am just adding them like a drop into a pool. Take what you want from the pool and add whatever you want. I don't expect anyone to agree with me. There is a process of mourning and I think it would be best if I actually engaged in it before forgetting entirely about 30 years of belief.

  11. I like to hear your thoughts Cavalcanti, even though I seldom agree. Your comments are nformative, well-written and not at all aggressive.

    I have had cause to use the labels zealot and brainwashed in this blog, but never directed at you.

    That other anonymous (I am only anon coz I can't work out how to create a profile) only serves to make the Mormon church look STOOPID. I really don't know why they continue to read if they are so offended by it. They try to blame Maureen for their own poor choices (and by that I mean choosing to read this blog)

    Thank GOD I'm an Aetheist

  12. Annymous,

    Can you tell me why Joseph Smith's opinions and beliefs are any more important than those of the rest of us?

    Thank God I'm an Aetheist

  13. Anonymous - hearing only about JS and everything else Mormon is certainly brainwashing. There is no real opportunity to question, even though a great deal of lip service is given to that idea. I have heard many people state from the pulpit that there are things they "don't have a testimony of yet" but that they keep on trying. Well, I have been there and done that. I was just never prepared to consider that perhaps it just wasn't true. If I'd had access to more of the actual facts of Mormonism, that would have been a great help. FARM has been a fantastic website for myself. Funnily enough it was a member who put me on to it, saying that it would clear things up for me.
    Well, it did, but not in the way that she intended. Instead of comfort and solidification of my testimony, I found that the things I'd been concerned about were...well..concerning! And no amount of political double-talk on FARMs was making it better. It was like having Paul Keating (I'm not a fan) trying to convince me - half-truths, smoke and mirrors.
    So, anonymous, I find it interesting that you lurk around here in such a bad mood. Methinks that thou protesteth too much! Perhaps look up anything Maureen says that concerns you on FARMs and see if you can stomach the double-talk and excuses.
    I couldn't.
    And yes, I'm posting as anonymous only because I am not interested in getting the sort of heat that Maureen has been subjected to. But Maureen knows who I am! (It was me who did the third post, by the way.)
    Hi Maureen. Luv ya lots babe!
    From your bikini guru! ;-)

  14. i don't know you personally but i am pretty sure that if you could stand me, we'd be great friends. i love your writing style, love that you don't edit and welcome discussion and even controversy. controversy is NOT a bad thing. people who take it personally are the problem.

  15. Too many anonymouses! making my brain hurt! I read a whole post with a certain tone in my head and then I realise they are one of the pro-blog ones! aaargghhh!

    Thank God I'm an Aetheist

  16. TGIAA, congrats on your new profile, a number of people have said to me that it is kind of tricky figuring out how to leave a comment here.

    Bikini Guru I knew it was you in that other comment, I'm getting pretty good at figuring out the anonymi ;) I think. Love you too Guru.

    Being anonymous is an important option as Bikini Guru pointed out. I hope everyone feels comfortable to be open or anonymous with a 'pet name' or completely anonymous. I just feel that the one comment I had to delete earlier was a bit cowardly if they actually know me.

    dcr, we may be on opposite sides of the globe but I love that through blackbikini it is like you are here. Friends? absolutely!

  17. Hi Bikini Guru!

    I would prob post as anon too if I were in your shoes:) wasn't an attack, just an insight into my limited mind power :D Good to have a handle for you


  18. hey TGIAA, I've done the same thing a few times now. I'll be reading an anonymous comment thinking oh crap this person is giving me hell and then realise they're actually not!! I think it's our Australian love of sarcasm that trips us up, I'm real slow to catch on to DHs sarcasm too :)

  19. "I condemn false prophets, I condemn the effort take away the power of rational decision, to drain people of their free will--and a hell of a lot of money in the bargain. Religions vary in their degree of idiocy, but I reject them all. For most people, religion is nothing more than a substitute for a malfunctioning brain" (Gene Roddenberry)

    POW! Take That!

  20. Bikini Guru here again! (I figure if I put it at the beginning of the post, it will cause less confusion! ;0) And TGIAA you don't have to worry, I didn't take it as an attack. I just thought I would explain why I was remaining anonymous. And also, I couldn't work out how to make my own profile. Doesn't matter now, because I'll just use this moniker, so you'll know it's me. And of course Maureen knows exactly who I am! Hee hee.
    Two of my favourite quotes re religion:
    #1 - Religion is for people who are too stupid to work out on their own how to be good people.
    #2 - Without religion, good people would do good things and bad people would do bad things. But for good people to do something evil require religion.

  21. Hi Maureen, I saw your comment on my husband's blog so I came here and read your blog this evening and I was riveted. I have to say that I admire your courage! Keep blogging about whatever the hell you want; It's your blog. You are not alone in your journey out of Mormonism. It's tough but so rewarding. Best wishes!:)

  22. Thanks Kaleidoscope girl! I am really excited that I found your blog and 'That guy with the Hairs' blog. It has been really helpful for me to read other peoples experiences about coming away from Mormonism. 'See' you out there xx

  23. You clearly have some trolls on here. I would delete their posts immediately. You have no idea who they are and why they are commenting. Probably just for kicks. It detracts from the conversation the normal people are having by allowing people to hijack the conversation who have nothing constructive to add, just critical.

  24. Since my blog is fairly new and I know that quite a few people have had their very first blogging experiences here (hello blog virgins) I have been really lenient with the comments. In the future if someone goes off topic too much (I'm just as guilty here!) I will try to reign in back in. I have only had to delete one comment that I can think of, it was threat of violence. Thanks for the concern though. I'm hoping that things should be manageable. If that changes I will change some things in the set up of the blog.

  25. Unfortunately Mormons like to dish it out but they can't take the heat. Blog what you want. Its your blog.