Trigger Warning: We discuss the topic of sexual assault and the abuse of power within the Mormon religion. This is a heavy conversation in which Carissa shares her exit story from the LDS church. There are parts of the story that are upsetting. Although we continue this conversation with humor and levity, it may leave you feeling triggered or in despair. If you need to pause and come back, please do, because on the other side of this gross abuse of power, there is freedom, joy, and peace. We hope you can listen to the whole story.
We will spend the next several episodes sharing exit stories from the LDS church, and the specific circumstances that lead each of these people right out the door. This is not meant to be mean to those who are part of the religion, it is a call to hold those in power accountable, and to see each person in their story, their pain, and heartbreak. These decisions are not made haphazardly. They are full of difficult, gut wrenching decisions. We want to share our stories so that others know they are not alone.
It is important to point out the toxicity of the culture in eliminating the option for personal boundaries. Individuals have undue pressure put on them in regards to the eternal salvation of those you love. This hierarchy deliberately pits family members against each other in order to keep each individual feeling stuck in the church. The leadership, those in powerful positions making the decisions for the whole, utilizes control over the individuals. They control what you wear, down to your underwear, how you spend your money, what you do with your time, and they exercise power over children instead of allowing parents to take responsibility for the safety of their children. This is a mighty over reach, and the power is abused all too often.
We begin the series with Carissa sharing her very personal experience inside the religion. Carissa shares her feelings as a young girl of concern for her father's salvation. Those men who put this idea in her mind were out of line, and her father is a phenomenal man and his eternal salvation never needed to be worried about. She walks us through her high school experience, marriage in the temple, and the straw that broke the camel's back.
Stay tuned for additional stories from some incredibly brave and loving human beings. If you have a story you'd like to share, or are looking for support with this topic, we are here for you.