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Posted by: Cheryl ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 07:52AM

Easy, trust your impressions and feelings. If you see a new pattern of behavior and if you feel you're being shunned, then you are.

In spite of all of the mormon emphasis on feelings, the morg teaches us to use a mormon filter to interpret our feelings.

The morg assumes we are usually at fault for slights and insults we suffer at the hand of mormons or the mormon system. We are trained to put our first impressions aside and to look for reasons to doubt our experience.

Nothing wrong with staying open to new information but in my experience my own first impressions usually turn out to be correct. And the mormon mindset of blaming the victim for being offended is uaually wrong.

I think part of recovery is to start to trust in oneself. Keep an open mind, but don't fall into the mormon trap of mistrusting your own senes and ability to read your own

If it seems to you that friends and family are shunning you, it's likely that they are doing exactly that, they are likely shunning you.

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Posted by: Greyfort ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 08:01AM

Sometimes it's pretty dang obvious. I ran into an old friend at a trade show. My face lit up and I said, "Hi!" She said a very clipped, "Hi," veered around me and kept going at a good pace. I turned around, stunned. She never even looked back.

We had been really good friends too.

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Posted by: Outcast ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 10:37AM

Easy...your social calendar suddenly clears up. No more stressful family get-togethers, no more buying all those birthday and Christmas presents.

It may hurt temporarily, but it can be a wonderful opportunity to make new friends and find better things to do.

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Posted by: Cheryl ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 10:40AM

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Posted by: CA girl ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 10:58AM

Honestly, the shunning didn't bother me for two reasons. One, it's pretty fun to be ultra-nice to people who are trying to shun you. They get so uncomfortable but if you persist, they usually start being a bit nicer by the end of the conversation. I enjoyed seeing their attempt to make me feel uncomfortable backfire and have them be the ones who felt awkward.

But mostly, I was just grateful that, like the old saying, when the pot boils the scum rises to the top. The people who are in Mormonism for the fraternal sense of belonging and have no interest in being good people or following the Savior pretty much showed themselves when I turned up the heat. And I was grateful for it as much as I was ashamed of myself for making friends with skanks like that in the first place. I'm so grateful to be out of that "bad" crowd and that the people who were really good and had character also showed themselves as real friends. One of the benefits of leaving is that by shunning, Mormons give away what they are really made of and make it easier for us to leave their sorry @sses behind.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/06/2012 10:59AM by CA girl.

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Posted by: stbleaving ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 11:06AM

CA girl, this is a great attitude. I had to adopt this way of thinking after my mom died and her TBM/JackMo family shunned my siblings and me before, during and after the funeral. They said and did some hideous things, including locking my sister and me out of the room where our mother's body was being dressed for burial. I vowed there and then that I would be as nice as possible to them during the whole funeral/burial process, just to show them a contrast to their own crappy behavior, and then I would never initiate contact with them again.

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Posted by: Strong One ( )
Date: January 07, 2015 11:08PM

So well said. I am so blatantly honest that it gets me in trouble with people. I love your reasoning and response. You give me strength just from reading your post.

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Posted by: exmormon2 ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 11:30AM

Mormons stop coming to your house unannounced.

So if Mormons stop paying attention to you they are shunning you, but if they pay attention to you they are harrassing you.

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Posted by: smoteheadofshiz ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 01:01PM

If Mormons repeatedly disturb you in a church capacity after you have asked them to stop, then yes, they are harassing you.

On the other hand, if Mormons stop being your friend, or won't even interact with you simply because of your beliefs, then that is shunning.

The difference here between harassment and shunning is the difference between church solicitation and real friendship.

(Sorry if you were being sarcastic, I couldn't tell.)

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Posted by: exmoron2 ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 01:13PM

I get it. But it just seems like the the margin of error, at least according to cheryl, is very small. It seems sometimes that their dammed if they do, and damned if they don't.

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Posted by: Cheryl ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 01:33PM

I'm sure you know the difference.

Harassment is continuing to hound someone after being told to stop.

Shunning is turning a blind eye on someone who is with kindness reaching out in friendship.

But you knew that. Right?

Harassment and shunning are two sides of the same manipulation game. It's all about control.

Anyone who doesn't know how exmormons feel is free to ask. They don't have to mindread.

"I like visiting you and bringing cookies and invitations but I don't want to make you uncomfortable. How do you feel about it?

Or "You've left the church but not the family. I don't want you to feel excluded or uncomfortable. Which activities are you still happy about attending? Temple session events? Family reunions? Holiday dinners? Others? Just asking because I want us to stay close, so let's always talk about however we're feeling."

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 11/06/2012 01:42PM by Cheryl.

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Posted by: dogblogger ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 02:08PM

I was shunned when I was active. Ever since I turned 18, the church failed me utterly as a social outlet. While I had friends who were and are mormon, it wasn't through the church that I met them or they became my friends. This was true on my mission as well. There were only a few companions I'd describe as my friends. Other missionaries I was friends with were never my companions, but we met in districts or zones and such.

I have very little in common in with mainstream mormons. I don't watch enough TV. I don't do team sports. I don't own a boat, snowmobiles, ATVs or other motor sports equipment, nor do i want to. I dont' care about BYU or UofU sports.

The quorum activities revolve around things I don't do or aren't interesting to me.

So to a large part, I shunned mormonism because the social life isn't interesting to me. But they are also equally uninterested in me except as I impact their statistics.

And now, i enjoy that they don't even notice my absence. No love bombing here.

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Posted by: forestpal ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 02:29PM

There's a very large difference between a pesky friend and someone who is shunning you. Maybe the difference is their motives. I have a pesky single friend who does not work, and who has time on her hands. She also has money, and is always pestering me to go to expensive concerts, dinners, plays, the ballet, even road trips with her, and pay my own way. All these activities are fun, when I have time to do them, but they take me away from my family and work. We are in contact several times a week by phone. She is pushy, but never rude.

Someone who is harassing you, is usually part of a group--otherwise they would be in the "creepy stalker" category. Harassers come to your door, unannounced, in groups of two or three, and often late at night. Their motive is to get something from you--your money, your time, a commitment. Harassers use manipulative techniques, such as threats, and guilt, and they play on your weaknesses. They don't really care about you as a person, and you can feel that. Their conversations are one-sided. They are often rude.

To me, this is as clear as night and day.

Shunning is unmistakeable. I think it is we who are in denial, rather than the shunning being subtle. At first, I made excuses for my Mormon friends, because I was very embarrassed in front of my children, family, and other friends. I seemed to be very unpopular, even hated. So, there must be something wrong with me! I needed to have my children respect me, and it was not good for them to see others disrespecting me, and treating me like dirt. My family needed to know that I was not an evil person, and I was not the "hater." This was difficult for me. Finally, I had to explain to my children what was going on, and by then they had observed for themselves. Because of this, my mellow, loving, prejudice-free children were beginning to hate the Mormons. I needed to do something about it, and we couldn't be driven out of our own home. We simply steered around the Mormon obstacles, and focused on all the positives in our much fuller, richer lives. Our non-Mormon friends were great!

In this beautiful new cult-free life, shunning is the only thing that makes me unhappy--and it is not necessary! So, I set up boundaries, to at least gain some control over the situation. I can't bear the role of "victim" anymore. All I ever did "wrong" was get divorced, and later leave the cult. My children have always been good people. God has no reason to punish us. When you are being shunned, it is important to build yourself up like this. No matter what you did, or what mistakes you made, you probably didn't do anything as deliberately cruel as shunning.

Think carefully about each individual who is shunning you. Most likely, the Mormon friends who are shunning you were NEVER your real friends. Turn your Mormon thinking around, and think of receiving, instead of giving. What did they give you, in the way of friendship? I listened to their problems, babysat their children, drove them places, worked in my callings, volunteered in the schools, etc. I gave them casseroles, with the rest of the RS, when they were sick, but I received only two casseroles in 15 years. Ask yourself how many Mormons actually invited you into their home? How many did you go to lunch with as pals? Or even a movie? Church-directed parties with HT's or VT's don't count. Those old missionary open houses don't count. I mean, the Mormon equivalent of just inviting someone over for a cup of coffee--is there no such thing? I did have two single Mormon friends, who got married and moved away, and we used to do the normal girl-things together, like my non-Mormon friends do.

Your phone never rings now, but when it used to, wasn't someone calling to ask you for something? Did a Mormon friend ever call you to chat, or to ask how you were bearing up with a crisis? With me, Mormons were always asking me to accompany them in their many performances. At the old Primary, RS, SS, EQ, High Priest Christmas parties, I was always at the piano. Usually, I'd have to bring food, too. What did I get in return? Being the only single one in a room full of couples, being treated like the hired help, longing for some intelligent or witty conversation like at my work parties, being put onto the cleanup committee, driving home alone in the cold. The way the ward Mormons treated me was the opposite of how my work colleagues treated me. If I hadn't had my career to balance things out, my self-esteem would have been at absolute zero.

When you look back, were you treated WORSE when you were a Mormon than you are now as an ex-Mormon? My answer is yes! The shunning behavior is a blessed relief! It is a reason for me to flush Mormonism out of my life entirely. Ditching the Mormons began in self-defense 8 years ago, and was only going to last for a few months, until I recovered, but it has only escalated. It began with going to a different grocery store, a different movie theater and mall, shopping on Sundays, walking my dog in the canyon behind my house, instead of in the neighborhood in front, turning the other way and calling someone on my cell phone, not driving past the church on the way to work anymore. I ended up making a NO CONTACT boundary with my abusive Mormon brothers and their mentally ill children, because of their crimes of affinity fraud and embezzlement against other family members. I'm out of the family, and out of the business!

Most of us leave the cult because of all the lies. Shunning seals the deal, socially. AS CA Girl says, "One of the benefits of leaving is that by shunning, Mormons give away what they are really made of and make it easier for us to leave their sorry @sses behind."

Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 11/06/2012 03:15PM by forestpal.

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Posted by: Cheryl ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 03:02PM

There are positive ways to look at it and I'm glad to see how many wise exmos have turned a negative into something positive. I'm a better person from reading these replies.

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Posted by: Greyfort ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 07:11PM

I was really shocked when it happened to me, but yes, I do admit to being amused by it at the same time.

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Posted by: Mia ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 07:20PM

It's easy to tell.
The people who used to go out of their way to pretend to like you, now go out of their way to make sure you know they don't like you.

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Posted by: SusieQ#1 ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 07:28PM

I don't allow it!! :-)

I greet people with a smile. My friend greets people with a hug somewhere along the conversation and often they are strangers.

I am an outgoing, friendly, extrovert that talks to total strangers! Just try and "shun" me!! Not going to happen. :-)

When I see LDS folks I know:
HI Jane (RS Pres). Haven't seen you in ages. How are you? How are the kids? Then I get a review of the kids and their missions marriages, grand kids and we commiserate about how great it is to be grand parents.

Nice to see you John (the bishop) you're looking well.

Missionaries at the store: Hello there ! Here, let me get those items for you.

I can't be shunned because I am to busy smiling, talking to people and being honestly caring about them!!

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Posted by: CA girl ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 11:29PM

Except I'm not such an extrovert so it's a more low-key version :) I also think that's why I never worried about the cliques in church. Because I never allowed it. I was friends with who I wanted to be friends with and if they were snotty, they weren't really my type but if they just seemed snotty and I could tell they were good people, I just barreled along, a bit clueless, being friends with them anyway. Eventually, I realized a lot of so-called beautiful people don't get the love and appreciation because people are either jealous or want to take them down a peg or misinterpret their shyness as snobbery or, or, or... I ended up having a lot of friends like that because I didn't mind telling them they were wonderful and breaking through the reserve. Again, a lot of it was cluelessness but it's the same method I use with those trying to shun me: If they are so awful, I don't want them in my life anyway. If there is some interaction, I'll slop over with sugar as sincerely as possible and it quite often sweetens them right up. Or at least makes them feel awkward, which also works :)

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Posted by: Stray Mutt ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 07:56PM

My relatives were either boring or annoying and I never connected with anyone at church (being the introvert/recluse that I am), so I just walked off to a different life in a different place. Bye-bye.

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Posted by: SusieQ#1 ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 10:11PM

Stray Mutt Wrote:
> My relatives were either boring or annoying and I
> never connected with anyone at church (being the
> introvert/recluse that I am), so I just walked off
> to a different life in a different place. Bye-bye.

That works also!

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Posted by: ThatLittleBriggy ( )
Date: January 08, 2015 12:56PM


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Posted by: anagrammy ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 08:05PM

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Posted by: Lethbridge Reprobate ( )
Date: November 06, 2012 10:13PM

I think I might have been shunned was kinda weird...but I don't care if I get life doesn't include any of those people anymore anyway...

Ron Burr

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Posted by: old timer ( )
Date: November 07, 2012 12:07AM

The ones that bother me are those who pretend to like me, fall all over me, can't do enough for me, because they will be heavily judged by god if they don't.

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Posted by: Breeze ( )
Date: January 08, 2015 05:16AM

Shunning hurt me a lot, after living in our ward and Mormon neighborhood for 25 years. My children were very friendly, and our house was always open to them. I liked having everyone here, where I could keep an eye on them. My children were a good example to the others--loving, kind to others, good students, good athletes, upbeat, ready for anything, confident. They are successes now. It was easier to see that my children did not deserve to be snubbed, than to see that I didn't deserve it, either. I felt like I must be socially awkward, or just unpopular, or ugly, or old, or divorced, or a working woman, or not a temple-goer--I was right about some of these reasons--but we were good people.

Finally on RFM, I found out why. Thomas Monson himself tells the Mormons that apostates are lazy, offended, and wanting to sin. The temple interview warns Mormons not to "associate with apostates or apostate groups." If they don't shun apostates, the might lose their temple recommend and the opportunity to be with their families forever! Shunning is part of their doctrine!

It is not about YOU or ME at all. It is about them.

You know you're being shunned when your former best friend passes by you in the grocery store, as though you aren't even there. She focuses over your shoulder, beyond you, and hurries over to another section.

Your phone never rings.

You wonder why you don't run into the old Mormon gang anymore, at school, or on the sidewalks, the parks, the usual places. Strange. Well, it is because they see you first, and they run in the other direction.

You go to a movie alone. You go for a walk alone with your dog. You watch the game alone. You go to your children's sports events, and sit by yourself, and no one approaches you to say, "Great game!" You go to weddings alone, and come home alone, and realize that you didn't meet up with anyone while you were at the wedding, either.

I resigned just before Christmas. No neighbor cookies or treats or Christmas cards, no invitations to the usual neighborhood parties, no meeting friends for lunch, no peppermint yogurt, no going in each other's houses to see our decorations. I wished I could go out of town, but the children were coming for Christmas, so I volunteered with some friends in Park City, went skiing, went snow-shoeing with my dog, saw some great matinee movies alone, went to business parties, worked with our sub-for Santa group, and shopped with my children for Toys for Tots. Instead of feeling shunned, I felt free to enjoy Christmas the way we wanted to! We had time to sit and talk and listen to my children. We laughed a lot, watched Christmas Vacation, had NO MoTab music, played the piano and sang, had friends over, went sledding and tubing, built snowmen around our yard, played golf in the snow, went to the concert at the Cathedral of the Madeline, the Wesley Bell Ringers in Holladay, and a Christian candle-light service on Christmas Eve. No Mormon busy-stuff. It was the best Christmas, ever.

I have turned into an introvert, but I'm happy with my family, my dog, books, house, and traveling to visit my few non-Mormon friends and ex-Mormon family.

You know you've been shunned, when, within 3 years, you end up with an entirely different set of close friends.

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Posted by: Just Passing Through ( )
Date: January 08, 2015 11:16AM

You are the only person in the stake to not get in invite to the recpetion. Even the openly gay do not contact guy got an invite, I know because he asked me if I knew the people. He showed me the invite and the mom was someone my wife was feuding with and we never got one.

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Posted by: wondering ( )
Date: January 08, 2015 11:18AM

I find shunning calming. No lds drama. no lds adgenda. More time to do positive things.

I often tell the tbms how much I appreciate their shunning.

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Posted by: ThatLittleBriggy ( )
Date: January 08, 2015 12:57PM


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Posted by: SusieQ#1 ( )
Date: January 08, 2015 11:39AM

This falls in with one of my favorite topics: Own your own power. When you do, no one has to power shun you as you don't give them that power. Be in charge of your life, your emotions/feelings, etc. Nobody can offend me as I refuse to take offense. Nobody can force you to take offense. Some one asked me, years ago, if someone offended me at church. I replied: If everyone who was ever offended never attended there would be no one there! I smile and this gets a chuckle! This is the tactic I use to kindly point out how ridiculous it is to take offense or use that as a reason for anything.

It would be impossible to shun me. Or offend me. I say hello, and strike up a conversation anyhow. Nothing like being honest and sincere and friendly to someone who is trying to ignore you!
People who try to shun someone need to be taught that their behavior is not doing anything but making them feel uncomfortable, and I'm going to do all I can to make that feeling go away. They will go away smiling after talking to me!

If someone doesn't invite me to something, I'm fine with it. It's their choice. If they don't want me somewhere, I don't want to be their either.

Mormonism has a strong tribal element. Once you leave the tribe, you are no longer part of it and there is no reason to keep you involved as you have made it know you don't want to be part of it either.

The only exception is the on-going contact by LDS members to find the "lost sheep." I get mailings from churches I have never attending inviting me, so that's just normal stuff in my life. Yes, I'm told I'm loved, and needed by total strangers. That's OK with me. I would not take offense. I "love" humanity also! :-)

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Posted by: Cheryl ( )
Date: January 08, 2015 12:04PM

However the way their target reacts is up to that person. It's good for them if they don't take offense.

My husband loves being shunned by Mormons because he sees them as narrow minded, officious and rude. DH doesn't want to associate with riff-raff so he shuns them as much as they shun him.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/08/2015 12:20PM by Cheryl.

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Posted by: CA girl ( )
Date: January 08, 2015 12:25PM

Your husband has the right idea - I have taken the position that the Mormons who shun me are not good Christians, liars, unkind, un-Christlike and unworthy of my concern. I know that sounds snotty of me but really, isn't it true? If they are epic failures at living up to their own proclaimed morals, why must we respect them or be distressed at their absence. I'm just glad the bad ones showed me so obviously who they were. I can walk by them without recognizing them far better than they can do it to me (blessing of a mission - when you are a cute American girl in Spain you have to learn to completely ignore men yelling all kinds of inappropriate suggestions at you. I've perfected the skill and can walk by Mormons like a deaf/blind person when I chose to.)

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Posted by: Cheryl ( )
Date: January 08, 2015 12:43PM

If the scum of the earth like you, what does that likely make you?

Be glad if scummy people don't think you're their kind of person.

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Posted by: Indy_exmo ( )
Date: January 08, 2015 12:23PM

I went to a party with my wife, it was probably 98% LDS. I saw the wife of a friend, she used to be very friendly to me. I said hi to her and she pretended she didn't see me and went the other way. There were lots of people that totally ignored me. The ones that talked to me didn't know I had left the church. It was the most boring party I had ever been to.

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Posted by: ferdchet ( )
Date: January 08, 2015 12:56PM

Once again, reading this topic makes me grateful I don't live in Utah any more.

I guess I don't notice if I've been shunned. But frankly, I don't care. I'm not interested in the opinions of former ward members. I suffered through a sacrament meeting right before Christmas as my oldest daughter was playing her flute, and the youngest 2 were singing. Quite a few did say hi. Though when I think about it, many are what would be considered outsiders in the ward.

Outside of church, I really don't see any mormons. There just are not very many where we live. So I don't run into them at the store, school, whatever. My friends and coworkers don't even think about me as a mormon, and they wouldn't care anyway.

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