Did any of you leave due to simple burn out?

by shaken faith

That is what is pushing me out, burnout of all the hoops etc, guilt is part of it as well, but mostly just don't want to do it anymore. Any lurkers on here want to talk me out of leaving? send me an email, but I want the opinions of those gone...I keep going back and forth like an indecisive teenager, family ties, thinking it could still be true etc, but burnout is pushing me out...

.and a Bishop that is...well....kinda harsh in his way.

Re: Did any of you leave due to simpkle burn out?
I would say burnout was a factor for me. I had always had doubts, but just kept going. When I got divorced, I decided to take a break. That was the time I needed to really get my head on straight and work out all the nonsense. I never went back and was all the better for it.

Re: Did any of you leave due to simple burn out?
“Burnout happens, not because we're trying to solve problems but because we've been trying to solve the same problem over and over and over.”

take a break for a few months and see what happens

at the very least you can be proud of your burnout - it means that you really did try to make it work...

Re: Did any of you leave due to simple burn out?
No, but I think the 1st counselor in the bishopric is just about to that point. His family is falling apart while he's doing free remodeling projects for the church. He gets home and has to go clean the church. He gets done with that just in time to go home teaching,and get ready for sunday. And on and on.I see the stress and exhaustion written all over him. My DH has been having a lot of conversations with him about it. I don't think it would take much for him to jump ship.

Burnout is a valid reason to take a break
They want to push you with their incessant demands until you drop. And then it'll be your fault for "doing it wrong".

Burnout is a recognized condition that needs to be taken seriously. Contrary to our assumptions it is not something that we can handle indefinitely with no relief or help. Sometimes it will present itself seemingly "all of a sudden" when there comes a day where you just cannot force yourself to take another step. You really want to avoid getting to that stage. I consider it to be like any other health condition where your body and mind are signalling distress and a wise person who wants to remain healthy will listen to the signals. (I can talk!) I've learned this from going through it myself and observing similar states in others. You push, push, push, until one day you collapse.

Unfortunately, in the Mormon Church, you'll be blamed for that. They don't see that the demands and expectations are back-breaking. For a church where they reference the light yoke so frequently, it's ironic that they impose the heavy burdens without a second thought or even any realization of what they demand from the members.

They will not offer to lighten your burden. It is up to you to do that for yourself.

You don't even have to explain yourself. You can legitimately say you have a health condition that requires you to rest and decrease your stress levels. Then do that!

I agree that with even a little time and distance it is possible to see things from a new perspective. If you still want to attend, you may see how to do it differently to preserve your physical and mental health. If you choose to take a break and a rest and begin to feel a lot better not participating there is a message in that.

I was an adult convert (I know - what was I thinking?!) and was unhappy in the church from my baptism night onwards. I stuck it out for three years, though, but became progressively more stressed and depressed. Especially for me the inconsistencies were oppressive. I like things to make sense and not clash. I thought, though, that how you feel or what you want is not a good reason to leave, telling myself that if something is "true" would you leave it for any reason? So that is the crux of the matter, at least for many people - is it true? And if so, why does it feel so bad? I thought I shouldn't leave just because I felt depressed. Then one day when I was feeling exceptionally unhappy I saw the light (more like had a flash of "inspiration"). I was leaving the church building and for the first time it occurred to me that I could just leave (fortunately, I had no family attachments to worry about) and that it didn't make sense to continue to attend a church that made me so unhappy and that that was not "selfish" but rather pure self-preservation.

A hospital chaplain friend of mine had asked me previously (on an unrelated matter) "Why do you continue to go to a place that hurts you?" To those mired in a religious group who feel there is no choice about staying, it somehow makes sense to stay and stick it out, but to those outside, such as nevermos, it makes no sense as church is actually not supposed to hurt you and drive you into the ground.

I would similarly ask myself why I would choose to stay in a church where I had to ask people to "talk me into staying".

Make it more of a bite-sized project rather than one gigantic all-encompassing problem. Focus on how you're feeling ("burned out") and what you need to do to turn that around. Then do it, for your health's sake, no matter how long it takes. When you're feeling more under control health-wise (less stressed, retreating from burnout) you can, if you choose, examine other aspects, like how you feel about the church, what you believe, what your life goals are, what you would like to do (see all the "you" in there, for a change?) and eventually you can make your decision about whether to resume your attendance and activity or not. It doesn't have to be one enormous decision all at once, instantly.

Good luck and let us know how it's going.

Re: Did any of you leave due to simple burn out?
For me, it was a December when I had been dumped with many assignments, volunteered for everything Christmas at church and to top it off I was on cleaning the building duty twice that month. I was tired and mad, this made me turn to the Internet to see if others were not happy cleaning the building. I found way more than I could imagine and here I am. I didn't leave because burnout but I did start reading that one day I felt tired and under appreciated.

Yes, I did. Burnout stopped me going to church. Thinking about stupid doctrine kept me out.
I was a Ward Clerk most of my years in the morg (I was an adult "hormonal" convert).

Thing is, we had problems with our computers for almost a year at one point. We begged the stake for help on the issue, as we couldn't transmit the financials to SLC without things being solved with our computer.

Then, we get a nasty-gram from the stake one week because SLC is breathing down their necks for not getting our financials for several months. And the stake chose to threaten us, conveniently forgetting they'd ignored our persistent pleas for help.

At that point, I thought to myself, "This is almost another full-time job, and I don't get paid for it. Plus, this is more crap than I have to take at my ACTUAL job. Screw this noise."

I've never been back.

Re: Did any of you leave due to simple burn out?
Well the first time I stopped going was because my mom had cancer and I didn't know how much time I had left with her so I went to spend my sundays with her instead of sitting in a meeting where I would hear the same insipid things over and over again for 3-4 hours.
Then she passed away and I went back. Then 2 years and 1/2 later I ended up in the er at the hospital. I was drained. Things in my life, at work and at church had become totaly crazy. Only thing I could let go "for a while" was church. So I stopped going again. But I always thought I would go back. A few years passed and then I though "ok, maybe it's time to go back". But too many things about the church bugged me, so I ended up facing all those things thinking that I'd find a way around them or over them and I would be able to go back. I completely left after some research.
What everyone said about suddenly feeling great peace and joy and a love for all, litteraly happened to me. I felt a great weight (that I did not know I had) physically leave my shoulders and my chest. It was an amazing experience. (That was about six months ago)

That wasn't really the reason for me leaving the church, but I've experienced severe burnout
in another area of my life.

To the point that I felt like I was going to have kind of a breakdown.

Dead inside, and just couldn't do it anymore.


I took some time off.

I left town and did something different for a few months. After a while I realized I missed what I was doing and went back.

But I took my work ethic down a notch when I returned. I made some new friends (good roommates), got a life, and had some fun. Maybe I didn't get as many kudos for my accomplishments, but I was sure a lot happier.

I think if you take a total break, it's easier to decide if you really want to be involved in something, and to choose your level of involvement carefully.

I've learned to pay attention to my body signals. When I start feeling stressed or trapped by something, it's time to scale back (if it's something I don't HAVE to do to survive). Our bodies can tell us things that we don't always consciously understand about ourselves and relationships. That anxiety/stress/burnout is a signal. Pay attention.

Re: Burnout is a valid reason to take a break
I had a low paying job that was like that once. Darn thing barely paid more then minimum wage, my employer was working be six days a week for twelve hour shifts, and kept telling us that he would give us our overtime pay on the next check. It never came.

I was constantly on my feet, going up and down stairs in twenty story tall high rises. One day, as I was dressing for work, I just sat there, holding my boots in my hands, and staring at the souls of my feet which were blistered and bleeding. I didn't go into work.

Every job that I have had since that one has paid more, treated me with more respect, and while stressful or hard at times, was never as bad as that one job. The worst thing was that our boss would constantly complain about how lazy all his employees were.

Re: Did any of you leave due to simple burn out?
DH is inactive because of burnout. He has no desire to return to church because it is simply "a burden and a chore". He's BIC, RM, the works. Always called to leadership positions. Comes from a rabid TBM family (luckily they live out of state and the meddling is minimal). Nope, nothing to do with historical or doctrinal issues or the awful church culture and politics, or total lack of inspiration and just flat out corporate greed.

The church just sucks the life out of the members.

Re: Did any of you leave due to simpkle burn out?
I'm noticing quite a theme here. I think it draws attention that the reason the church is so adamant against taking any kind of break is that when people take a step back and remove themselves from the constant grind, their minds actually start to work again and they're unlikely to go back.
I, too, didn't leave from burnout alone...
...but, once I learned the truth about the church, I did seriously question the purpose of all the work they were giving me.

I echo the sentiments of all those who advise taking a break and then examining how you feel. The thing to remember here is -- at least with my experience in the church -- the harder you work, and the more successful you are, the more work they will give you. If it is difficult now, but you're being even marginally successful, the work and responsibilities heaped on you will probably increase. The church will likely tell you that your heavier workload is due to your increased faith and diligence. However, my observation is that (as others have said) the church will squeeze as much out of those willing to work as they can. Taking a break can help you see the quality of life you experience when you exercise the option to remove that burden. Best of luck.


Joe Laban
Re: Did any of you leave due to simple burn out?
I am at the end of my rope. My wife is pissing me off. I am trying to stay for the family, but no I have to be this and I have to be that. I am about ready to say fck it! These TBM do not have a clue what it feels like to have to go through the stages from being a TBM to being "a candle in the wind".

It is like Watergate, the coverup was worse than the burgulary. Same with the Church.

I am about ready to solve my current problems even if I have to take on a whole new set. She wants me to quit this forum as well.

"Recovery from Mormonism - www.exmormon.org"