Nobody wants to be friends with someone wielding an ax…..

And I suppose, to my friends from high school–my Mormon friends–that is what I am. A crazy woman walking around carrying an ax.

When we were kids, we grew up knowing THESE things were true:

1. We were members of the ONLY TRUE CHURCH.

2. Joseph Smith was a prophet of God.

3. Anybody who left the Church either had an “ax to grind” or somebody hurt their feelings


No, really. THESE THINGS WERE TRUE. And also, Jesus wanted me for a sun-BEAM, but only if you accentuated the BEAM part.

I went looking for Sunbeam videos, and I found these.

This one is TRULY frightening. Who the hell came up with this concept? What is WRONG with you people? And I swear these kids sing “He wants me to live with him on Mars.” I swear!

This one is cute, and although she doesn’t give the “beam” quite as much accentuation as I would like, it still gives you an idea.

One did not escape an LDS upbringing without knowing EVERY WORD of this song. I don’t think this is a Mormon version, however, since they clap for her at the end. Mormons don’t clap at church services. Unless things have changed in the past 30 years.

At any rate, my former friends are now left with ME. And what are they supposed to do with ax-wielding me? You know, I have to have an ax to grind. Why else would I have left. I don’t even know how to GRIND an ax, and trust me, if I tried, it would probably involve dismemberment and hospital visits, and I just don’t see it having a good ending.

Folks, ax to grind, of course, is a funny way of saying “you’re angry.” I’m not angry. I am puzzled with why everyone thinks I am, but one of my good friends who was raised here, but NEVER Mormon, pointed out that even SHE thought my posts were angry. Well, see, I learned early on that if I was not VERY clear, and very straightforward about what I had to say, the Mormons saw it as an opening, and a weakness. And they would DIVE IN and attack.

I don’t really get attacked that much anymore, mostly because I have learned how to speak to them in a language they understand.

But that still leaves me with friends who have no idea what to do with me, or how to compartmentalize, or what we would TALK ABOUT at lunch, even.

Not all of them. A dear friend Pam stopped by my house before she left Utah to return to her home in another state. And we had a great conversation, and shed some tears, and came to some understandings that were really amazing. She also let me know that two other of my closest high school friends really didn’t know what to say or how to act.

Can I blame them? Well, NO. We were not raised to accept this. When it became common knowledge I was not living the Mormon lifestyle, I received a letter from my next door neighbor. Now, mind you, this neighbor never so much as bothered to give me a hello, or a hey at school, or church, and really pretty much treated me as though I was invisible. So when I got THIS LETTER from him, written from his mission, advising me against the pathway I was taking, I was pretty damned offended.

He was in Japan or somewhere like that. How the hell did he even KNOW what pathway I was on? The nude stripping and weekend prostitution was only a way to pay for my college education, since my parents would only ante up the money if we were going on Church missions. I kid, I kid. Well, about the stripping and prostitution part.

The mission part, well, it’s sadly true. LDS families DO pay for their missionaries, and I had a brother and a sister who were both supported on their missions by my parents. College was not included in that little deal, though.

I love my parents, and I understand why they made these choices. Remember, I was RAISED this way. I understand where the belief comes in, although I have never, and probably will never, understand the mindset.

I am, sadly, not a sun-BEAM.

But give me some bling, and I will gladly shine for you each day. Because this girl is all about the bling….

That said, and going back to the dilemma, what DO these friends do with me? Where do they put me? Do they lovebomb me back? (Note to potential love bombers. It ain’t gonna work. Find someone else. Try someone who likes cats. I hear they are lonely.)

Do they IGNORE the giant elephant in the room that is my apostasy?

Just exactly WHAT are they supposed to say?

Well, for starters, how about, “Let’s talk about how teenagers are mutants.” I am damned sure we all have that in common.


About Natalie R. Collins

Natalie has more than 30 years writing, editing, proofreading and design experience. She has written 20 books (and counting), has worked for the Sundance Film Festival, and as an investigative journalist, editor, and proofreader. She embraces her gypsy-heart and is following her new free-thinking journey through life. Follow her as she starts over and learns a bunch of life's lessons--some the hard way.
This entry was posted in Ex-Mormons are the angriest people I know, Natalie's Posts, Things she said.... and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Nobody wants to be friends with someone wielding an ax…..

  1. JulieAnn says:

    I love this because we have so much more to us than our religions, if we would just take a moment and have compassion.


  2. David says:

    For me, the anger came after I mentally checked out of the church. I was angry when I learned that pretty much everything the church leaders (and parents) ever told me about the history of the church turned out to be a lie and pretty much everything the “anti-Mormons” told me about the church’s history turned out to be true. Talk about a kick in the nuts.

    It has taken me years to get over this.


    • Yes, and it’s one of the reasons I say that ex-Mormons are angry. Frankly, they have a right to be. The problem is, what YOU see as reason others see as faith-destroying.

      What IS faith? faithNoun/fāTH/
      1. Complete trust or confidence in someone or something.
      2. Strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof.

      …and that “based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof” says it all


  3. Belinda says:

    As a recovering Mormon, I do carry a lot of anger. I suppose because I was so bludgeoned with guilt it made me unable to really enjoy life once I admitted to myself that I was not a believer. All those years of sunday school classes and seminary and Mutual…man..they did a number on me.

    I recently joined a support group, that seems to help a lot.


  4. Brandy says:

    As I read your blog (as I have for the past 2-3 years) I sort of understand where you are coming from since my mother was (she passed on) an ex-mormon. I remember her going through a lot of the same things that you bring up and talk about in your blog. As a kid/teen I did not really understanding what she was talking about, because although she was raised mormon we were raised religion free. I grew up in Utah until I was 11, and never understood anything my mother was talking about being “picked on or looked down upon” by the mormon population. I always thought that she was over exaggerating everything especially when we moved to Colorado which has an almost non-existent mormon population. Once we moved to Colorado my mother’s mormon bashing got worse, and although I am not mormon and have never understood the religion, a large chunk of my family is mormon. So her mormon bashing hurt my feelings because of my close nit family members who where/are mormons. Anyway we (my sister, myself, many of my family members) saw her as angry too. Before she passed away I had a great conversation with her about it; when I confronted her about her anger towards mormonism. She explained that she was mad about being lied to her entire life, and about how the religion/church (she never, NEVER called it a church always called it a cult) leaders took advantage of their members in many ways, and how judgmental the church teaches their members to be. My mother told me the fact that many of her family members are still stuck in a cult that she believes is brain washing them against her (because she is an ex-mormon) and teaching them to be judgmental against her. As well as her family members choosing to think of her as a crazy mormon basher, and not try to understand where she was coming from. I never understood her either as a non-mormon, I saw it as unconstitutional angry towards a religion that never did anything to her, and like my other mormon relatives I saw her as a crazy mormon basher, and learned to ignore her rants.Now, as an adult living back in Salt Lake City, with friends both mormon and non-mormon, are just now coming to understand what she was talking about.
    Anyway trying to make my point before I write another chapter for this novel is, I believe that anger (or fusteration, or mormon bashing as my family calls it) is just a characteristic of being an ex-mormon (a friend I have that is a recent ex-mormon is starting to display this characteristic, especially with me since she says I am the only person she has talked to that understands and doesn’t judge her). I wouldn’t be so hard on yourself for this characteristic, its unique to your life experiences, its neither good or bad (unless you act on it by becoming a real ax welding maniac), and its apart of who you are, but only a slice. If people care only to judge you on one slice of your life, then who really cares what they think!! The whole is always more important than the pieces!!
    So you just have a nice day and I look forward to your future (mormon bashing and non mormon bashing) posts!!


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