By Temple-avoider Female
You may think this really strange, but I had a person that I had become very best friends with create such anxiety about going to the temple that I didn’t even want to go. At every turn she was cautioning me about what not to do and what not to forget. I was so uptight about it that my first time through for my endowments was a nightmare for me. When the temple worker walked up to me and extended his hand to lead me to the veil I nearly screamed. I had a panic attack trying to get my robe on, and felt absolutely none of the spiritual uplifting that I thought I should have.
To this day I have a hard time going to the temple and have to do a lot of meditating in the parking lot to get myself through it. The only temple that I have gone to that I don’t feel that way is the Monticello, Utah temple. It is one of the small ones and for some reason I can actually breathe there.
In addition to temple anxiety, our sons were not as active as we would have liked. Our kids were dealing with our split family and the different rules and lifestyle they lived while visiting the other parent. They fell into bad habits and fell away from the church. When I was trying to get them involved with other church members who were active and that they liked to be around, one parent told me she didn’t want her son hanging around mine because they would be a bad influence. I really did understand their concern for their child’s spiritual welfare, but also wondered how I was to help my kids want to be around people who didn’t want to be around them?!
The ward was so dysfunctional that our bishop was conducting temple interviews with the youth over the phone, so there was probably more at work behind the scenes than I knew. Even though bishopric knew that Sunday school teacher wasn’t showing up, they left the kids to teach their own class. How do you think that turned out? When I went to a counselor in the Stake presidency and he checked into it, the Young Men president lied to him about what was really going on. My son will tell you today that he quit going to the Mormon church because they talk a good talk but don’t really care about people. He refuses any kind of contact from the church because he doesn’t want such hypocritical people around his family.