Mother Who Knows
Date: October 25, 2017 11:30PM
Candice, you are a nice person, to give the "shunners" the benefit of the doubt, and the rest of us need to do this more often.
Not ALL Mormons like to punish and inflict pain on apostates. For example, some of my female cousins used to have very close relationships with me, but our separation happened when I got divorced, and had to concentrate on working to support my children. We just didn't have much in common, anymore. At first, they liked to call me, and complain about their husbands--maybe because I was divorced, and they hoped I would take their side, against their husbands? Spending those hours on the phone, listening to (petty) marital problems depressed me. My children needed me to listen to THEIR problems and ideas. My family actually wanted to HAVE FUN with me, in my free time.
Working full time, I simply had less time to spend with arts and crafts, sewing, cooking, going out to lunch with the girls, game-night. None of my former Mormon friends are interested in business, science, sports, and the environment, as my work colleagues are. Since the Mormon church ruled out all the different kinds good, enjoyable music, and allows only Mormon-written stuff, I no longer have music in common.
Music and children were my strongest common bonds with the Mormons. The cult became more authoritarian, over the years, and I stopped thinking that Mormons were great parents. When some of the adults began abusing my children--that was it! I left. Part of the shunning is due to differences in parenting style. My children appreciated honesty, and they didn't sneak around, and they refused to do anything immoral (except ski out of bounds and pull a few pranks, here and there).
When I got divorced, I was automatically no longer included in the couples social activities. I never took that personally--it was just awkward, that's all.
When I got divorced, I fell down to a lower economic level. I couldn't afford to go to the Shakespeare Festival in Cedar City, and I gave up my season tickets to the symphony and opera (and the friends I used to go with). I couldn't afford to give dinner parties and barbecues, anymore. We had to sell our cabin, and I lost touch with all the neighbors there.
So much of the Mormons' social world is church-oriented, that it is normal to be excluded from all of that. Nothing personal. I wouldn't want to go to the church things, anyway.
It's true that I have only a handful of Mormon friends, including within my extended family. It wasn't all because of blatant, overly mean shunning, but a lot of it was.
"Shunning" is as you described. It isn't just having people not notice you, for forget about you--it is downright mean-ness.