Believed in Mormonism for 85 years

thelameduck July 2013

Born in the twenties.
Raised as an active member.
Served a 2 ½ year mission.
Served in the Army during the Korean War.
Married in the Temple: 8 children.

Held most of the ward jobs.
Served in 4 bishoprics.
Gospel Doctrine Teacher.
High priest Teacher.
Mia President.
Sunday School President
Scoutmaster twice.
Assistant Scoutmaster twice.
Read most Mormon Doctrinal Books.
Read several books about other religions.
Gave a two day class in a CA High School concerning the Mormon Religion.
Attended many BYU Education weeks.
Debated other preachers from other religions.
I loved the Joseph Smith Story.
Spent almost 2 years in hospitals when over 80 years old.
Worked for a large computer company.
Education in Aeronautical and Electrical Engineering.
Had and IBM PC two months before the PCs were released to the public.
Played hardball, softball and basketball. Mostly as a pitcher, or catcher.
Enjoy bicycling. After retirement, averaged 40 miles a day.
Still enjoy bicycling.
Then the internet came along. What a glorious invention.
Worked at the LDS Genealogical library.
Spent two years extracting name from various census.
Then the internet came along.
Then the internet came along.
Then the history of the beginning of the Mormon Church was researched and reported.
In Dec 2012, slowly I convinced myself that the history of the church, as found in LDS books, did not support the Joseph Smith Story.
85 years as a TBM, only to have it all shown to be a big lie.
It started when I discovered that Joseph Smith used a Stone in a Hat to receive revelation to write the BofM.
That the stone he used was found while he and his brother were digging a well for a neighbor.
That he stood trial for using his stone, and was found guity in a court of law.
That he was arrested and taken to the Carthage jail for having destroyed the printing press that
was being used to print a story of his polygamy, etc. (the truth)
As I read and read about his life, I could find nothing that he contributed to mankind that was worth anything.
I discovered writings of Brigham Young indicating that is was an angel that came to Joseph Smith, not the Father and the Son. The first 4 presidents of the church never mentioned the 1st Vision.
Now how to I get the over 100 decedents in my family tree to wake up. What a totally wasted life I have lived.

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
I thought I woke up late! I'm 62. At least you figured it out, not going through your entire life deluded. Congratulations. Even at 62, I realize I have left a wake of TBM's too. I have 7 kids, 6 of which are TBMs, and they are pumping out little TBM's at a frightening rate.
Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
What's important in life isn't what we do, it's who we share it with. You had lots of kids, and now lots of grandkids, etc. You didnt mention any estrangements, so I'm assuming you have a very rich life of people that love you.
Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
No sir! You've had a fascinating and rich life and you have accomplished much. You have served your country (we all thank you!) in a harrowing war and reared your children. No doubt you have been a stellar husband and family men.

There are probably many people in scouting, in church, and throughout your career you have influenced.

Your education in Aeronautical and Electrical Engineering is evidence of keen intelligence. How many people at 84 are on the internet, still educating themselves, still curious?
It shows that you have remained active, not stagnant!

Count yourself lucky to have finally uncovered the sham. But just because the church is a sham, it doesn't mean that your life was a lie!

It's normal to feel duped and angry when you find out. This phase will pass and you will heal. It takes time.

Forgive yourself. We are here for you.

CA girl
Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
It hasn't been a waste - I'm sure in your callings you helped real people with real problems. You were probably a friend when one was needed, a parent to what I'm sure are some wonderful children, probably a good marriage, had fun activities and good memories. It's a terrible blow to find out the foundation you built your life on is what it is ... but it's just one part of the building you spent your life building. And you have a chance now to save some of your descendants, as you mentioned. To be a listening, understanding ear to those who have already figured it out but were afraid to tell the family for fear of rejection. Now they have you to turn to. So do any other inactives you may know. You can still instruct, listen and understand. You can save others from building on a shaky foundation. It's NOT a waste because you did good and have new chances to continue doing good.


Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
All I can say is WOW, what a powerful post.
Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
I wish you could feel proud of the courage and integrity that it takes to challenge your life at this time. I do not know many who would be able to be so forthcoming and open to learning.

Be good to yourself, eyes on the present!

anon for now
Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
You're the same age as my parents. I would be thrilled if they were capable of learning what you did.

You are still learning. My parents refuse to learn. They think they know it all. They've thought that for decades.

I was 50 when I learned the truth about mormonism. I don't feel like my life was a waste. I do feel like I wasted a lot of time and energy at church though. It was time that could have been put to much better use.

I can say that I always put my family before the church. I wasn't the most popular person at church because of that.

We found out late in life. The good news is we're still alive. We are still here and still have influence in our families. I've written a long letter to my future grandchildren about Mormonism. How I was raised in it, and why I left. There will probably be many that I won't ever know. Still, I can leave my words, thoughts, and what I learned. Maybe I will influence some of them away from Mormonism.

It's a religion that steals life from it's members. It steals our families, our money, time, energy. But, it cannot steal our knowledge unless we let them. They cannot take what I know about Mormonism. I know what they've been hiding and lying about. I only know a tiny piece of it i'm sure. But it's enough. Enough to know that it's a religion of lies and thievery. Beyond that, the details don't matter much.

I have to wonder who, and what I would have been. What I could have accomplished. So many opportunities were denied me. The church had only one acceptable job description for me. They have stolen so much from so many.

I'm happy that you found the truth out. More than that, i'm impressed that you had the courage to accept what you learned. You didn't ignore it and keep on as if it was always what you thought it was. You're a rare person. I've read studies that say it's very difficult for anyone over 50 to switch their foundational beliefs. Difficult, yes. Impossible? No. You've proven that.

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
I wish I actually knew you. You must be a wonderful man. The fact that at an advanced age you could find and embrace the truth says so much about your character.

You ask how to rescue your over 100 descendants. What you have written is powerful and beautiful. Send it out as an e-mail or if you can't face the repercussions of that now leave several copies for your descendants to find later.

I've been reading family histories lately and one account that I shared with a cousin was helpful in opening a dialogue about the untruths in church history that I have found. The account was written in 1884 and is changing lives now.

Today, I told my 85 year old mother that my daughter and her family and myself had left the church. Her response surprised me. She was relieved. Maybe some members of your family would relieved to hear your truth as well.

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
NO! You ARE amazing and have had an incredible life! I am only 29, and if I could look back at your age and be able to say that I'd done half of that, I would be proud. I can truly imagine how heart-breaking what you're going through could was hard enough being 28. I guess the only thing that you can do is focus on all that you've accomplished and how well you did with what you knew. Abraham Lincoln (I think) said, "Whatever you are, be a good one" You have done that in each aspect of your life, not just the church. My husband is in the military and I know how much sacrifice goes into that. Thank you so much for your service. Your education, career, activities, raising 8 children...Wow, YOU'RE AMAZING. Please focus on that!
Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
It sounds as though you want to maximize every minute of your life, and as a result you have spent a wondrous and vibrant existence.

A life of learning and integrity.

Let yourself off the hook. Is there any juncture in your whole life when you were not open to the truth that was available to you? Is there any point at which your integrity did not move you forward in a reliable way. Have you not acted in the best way you knew at the time?

What else can you ask of yourself?

Even now, you want to find a way to help others.

It looks to me as if you have been a lifelong learner and that you have had many opportunities to act with utmost integrity.

Today is no different. You are still inspired. You are still inspiring. Passing on your wisdom to your progeny is a great thing to do.

And since the internet has come along, you can put your witness out there for time and all internet-y.

I hope you can find a way to apply the same compassion to yourself that you would give to anyone who crossed your path whose situation matches yours today.

Thank you for your post.

GQ Cannonball
Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
I'm a believer that it's how we treat each other that is essential, not what we choose to believe (nor not) as we live our lives. With that in mind, and the conclusions I have drawn about your character based on the fact that you're willing to look truth hard in the face after decades of involvement in the religion, I believe you have lived a life to be proud of and cherished. This is a very inspirational post you have shared with us, and I'd be pleased to have the chance to meet you, Mormon or not.

The beauty of being older is you can say whatever you damn well please without shouting to be heard. Enjoy that privilege and speak your mind to your loved ones with compassion and honesty. Give them a new kind of loving legacy that they can learn and benefit from.

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
It sounds like you've lived a great life so far. Congratulations on being willing to learn throughout. I wish you many more wonderful years!

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
40 miles a day in retirement. wow

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
You are making me feel good!

It *only* took me 30 years and some Gordon B.S. Hinckley style PR to make me pull my head out.

Best Wishes !

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
This post needs to be sent around as an email or facebook post. It is much like the ones I receive from TBM's only with the truth this time.

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
Did you find love in your life? Then your life was not wasted.

Did you find happiness in your life? Then your life was not wasted.

Did you make good friends in your life? Then your life was not wasted.

Did you enjoy your life overall? Then your life was not wasted.

Do you have an opportunity to bring your family out of captivity? Then your life will not be wasted.

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
PLEASE. PLEASE do NOT feel you have wasted your life. You have always been and still are very honest with yourself and others. I am honoured to have read your story. Thankyou for sharing it!!! YOur journey is yours and your descendants have their own journey. The fact that you have left after so many years of obedience in the Church will be a good enough message. Stay true to your inate honesty and some will follow, others will not, but that is what freedom is all about. My love to you!
Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
Lame duck: I am so angry about my wasted years. The Internet gave me the opportunity to really study "The Church" and give me the testimony I never received. It did the opposite. I am soooo disgusted with the TBM's who I consider smart. How can they live this masquerade?
Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
Not a waste. You lived a good life. I am absolutely amazed that you realized the truth at 85 years of age.

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
Not a waste. You lived a good life. I am absolutely amazed that you realized the truth at 85 years of age. Hats off.

Quoth the Raven Nevermo
Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
You never stopped learning. That is the key to life. I believe in reincarnation and that we take our hard earned wisdom with us in our next life. My father died at 83 and I am sad to say he learned so little. He had a long life to gain some wisdom but he didn't.

Wouldn't you rather have learned the truth rather than continued the lie? Just as you led your life to spread the teachings of the morg, now you can spread the word of truth, that the morg is a lie.

Are all your descendants believers? Some must have left the crutch. Connect with them and come up with a strategy.

You have lived an exceptional life of purpose and service. No need to stop now.

Exmo Mom
Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
Even though you figured it out so late, I still think that's better than my late TBM father - who although figured it out 15 or so years before his passing, waffled and stayed with it.

I know he was very sad and if I had one wish, it would be to have helped him have some real fun in the last five or more years of his life, helping him to see it was ok to leave and drop it all. After all, he was a fully grown man.

But instead, I avoided discussing it with him. I should have directly talked about it, and thanked him for having tried to learn the truth about it all....

Exmo Mom
Yes! This
I wish my TBM dad who figured it out but had difficulty leaving it entirely had written a letter with his true feelings and what he had discovered.

Instead TBM family have uncovered a positive testimony he wrote 35 years ago and claim that that is what he believed, whereas I know differently.

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
I feel for what you must be going through. Regardless of your age, you can still do so much good by sharing your life story with others. Thanks for the post.

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
Glad you see TSCC for what it really is now. :) Been there, went thru all that mess too.

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
JS shoulda been tossed in a bucket in the corner when he was born!

Your life was Perfect . . . and IS Perfect.
It's not so much what you have DONE or NOT DONE. It's what you ARE ... and what you have BECOME that moves our planet and makes a real difference.

Through a rare display of deep courage at your age, you have raised your own level of personal consciousness and awareness. By so doing, you have personally uplifted the entire Sea of Human Consciousness, and thereby floated every human being's boat a little bit higher and brought EVERYONE's opportunity to behold Truth a little closer ... including ALL of your descendants.

This all happens quite naturally ... of its own accord.

I personally feel VERY PROUD of your huge accomplishment. You have earned the deep respect of every exmo who reads your amazing bio. Well done! You have crowned your Life with the biggest accomplishment of all.

PS - This is from an Electrical Engineer, semi-retired now at age 63. I was fortunate to shed my b.i.c. straight-jacket at age 30.

You are simply AMAZING ! Thank you for sharing and for your service!! 

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
"You have lived an exceptional life of purpose and service."

Most definitely.

If there is a God I would assume that He loves you and will someday embrace you.

If not, you have still achieved what most all of us hope for. To, in the words of Gordon B Hinckley, Stand For Something.

Re: My life as a deceived Mormon
Here's what a late-life conversion shows your descendants:

You are committed to the truth and a life of integrity.

You have the courage to FACE truth no matter how late in life--how cool is that?

You are demonstrating that you would rather be authentic than "right."

I am older too and one of my eight children just last month wrote me a touching letter on Mother's Day which said that the changes I had made late in my life were his inspiration. He's in his forties and he said he feels like it might not be too late for him to choose a different life.

It is tempting for an older person to feel like their life was wrecked, to look at the regret that comes with the realization that you were duped by a cult and feel worthless.

Nothing you have done can eliminate the potential for good that you have. You did the right thing based on what you believed was true at the time. You are demonstrating that you WILL CHANGE towards integrity no matter how old you are.

Those are the words of a secure person, a person who has self-respect and I am going to assume that your life is full of people who respect you.

As long as you speak your truth with love, you have a great potential to open the door and let the light of reality into the lives of your loved ones.

You may not live to see the result, but write a personal letter to each of your family members, expressing your love for them and your hope that they will trust their own consciences to lead their lives, and express your present feelings about God.

I am proud of you and would consider it an honor to count you as a friend.


"Recovery from Mormonism -"