Why I rejected life as a mother of Mormon

Posted by: Newswalle

Carys Bray grew up with the knowledge that their God-given destiny is to be a mother. So if they of doubt too familiar, many new parents struggle in those early years with lack of sleep, they were equivalent sins.

A song for Bradley Issy by Carys Bray purchase book Tell us what you think: Star-rate and comment on this book

"Because motherhood is their role in this life and the next, we say." Actually, I'm not really enjoying that much, and I think I would have anything to do at any given time 'is quite difficult, it is assumed that be a wonderful and loving it. Tribe "

It is a text that Mormon is still used today, which says: ". No career approaches in importance that of wife, homemaker, mother – do cooking, washing utensils, beds for a wonderful husband and children"

Carys is talking to me from his home in Southport, Merseyside. There are about 100 Mormons practitioners in Southport, which has a population of 90,000, so stop being a Mormon boy in school was weird, was not remarkable. In the 180,000-strong British Mormon church grew, she grew up in a family that "very, very dutiful obedience the first rule of heaven. Whatever the Prophet said, we have tried to do." When it came to women, the Prophet was very clear. Stay home and the best wife and mother I can.

As a teenager, the perceived target Carys irritated with his budding ambition. "I had all these ideas, I thought I would work in a university, because I loved the school." But unlike some teens shoot from the religion they were born, she stayed with him. When he was 18, but: "It was as if it reset mode or something 'default' All that stuff about marriage in the forefront of my mind when I left it too long if I said that I did not '.. t marry until I was a little older, could not be any. "

Marriage – Neil, a fellow Mormon – the upper hand over all other objectives of assumptions and was soon followed by motherhood. Mormon women are encouraged to have as many children as they feel able. "I was pregnant with my 21st birthday," says Cary. "It took me a feeling of" I'm 21 and pregnant, that's not really what I had planned. "But it seemed wrong to put off children."

Life was hard. "We were pretty isolated, and really had no money, because Neil was a student." To make ends meet, Carys took a part-time job, but that their own problems brought about. "Idecided work nights, so I would not be during the day of my children. Working I felt guilty and was so exhausted that I was physically sick."

Carys soon pregnant again, but her second baby, Libby, died a few days after the birth of a genetic condition undiagnosed. Again, his instincts were at odds Mormon teachings, the state, are essentially meeting with the deceased in their own death. "People said, 'Oh, but you have the opportunity to have to bring themselves [in the celestial kingdom]." Some people might this comforting says Carys, but we have found no help.

Depression occurred after the birth of her third child. Help: "I was unhappy for a long time, then he was a very difficult child, I thought." It's my own fault for being unhappy. '"Finding feel impossible, as the Mormons are required to" very cheerful and happy and good example of non-Mormons. "

At the age of 27, Carys was at home with her four young children. My doctor prescribed medication. While depression disappeared a little, there was another concern. "I was so embarrassed antidepressants even say Neil. Should be very happy, and I want to be a mother, and it was very difficult. I did not know how to tell him."

The religious code families affected life in many ways too small. In school, some such beliefs are different activities had to be negotiated: "When the children brought lots of school usedto we send them back with a donation, because the purchase of the lots was the game, and the game is against the teachings of the Church."

While Cary's been able to write his own ambivalence about aspects of his faith, he found this difficult to maintain when their children grew up. Oldest child Carys' is a natural hipster, says with a laugh. How could he bring his skepticism about the rites of their religion with their own unwavering acceptance so far in line?

"It was strange to leave it and see this little person had very firm ideas about what she wants from life. Has had the opportunity to confront him and intimidate him one kind or the brightness of it. I was so embarrassed not for him, but for me, because I was not capable of the flattery that was expected of me to do. "

Carys was the beliefs that had been so ingrained as a child begins to erode provided as their own offspring in question. Little by little, she and her husband the rules they relaxed when young was followed. "First, we want children of Togo for birthday celebrations on Sunday, because we broke out on Saturday, I've changed my mind about it – .. Wanted the children feel a part of things with their friends"

Carys and her husband realized that the best way for your family was going to church. "Libby was dying it opens a little, but it was significant moment when I thought, 'I know nothing else to think about." It was gradual. I think I stopped believing in God before I stopped believing in Mormonism. "

After reaching a big decision, they felt it was important to change before their children were much older. "When the kids start from 12, 'worthiness interviews' with semi-annual checks bishop who keep the commandments have – saw .. No drinking, no smoking, etc. and keep the law of chastity, and When boys turning 12, which as deacons. be ordained and to consider an active role in the church, as it might be a good idea, these things started to happen. "

For four children, 11, nine, seven and five years old, the organizational structure of the Mormon Church was all that I knew. Carys and her husband believe the best way, with minimal disruption. "We have to do things over a year apart, sometimes the church jumps." Children participated in the decision, too. "We felt it was very important that they have a say in what happens to have them. I do not feel like the religious beliefs of my children are my business," says Cary. They are all without question participated in the election, but his youngest son asked him to go ahead – but only to see their friends after the service, so that he could act Pokemon cards.

Five years later, Carys has fulfilled his childhood ambition. She teaches Creative Writing at Edge Hill University, where he received his doctorate, and his next novel, A Song For Issy Bradley has been praised by Nick Hornby as "ironic, intelligent and moving." While she does not regret taking your family church, she feels that it defined benefits for their own education. "As a Mormon is an incredible amount of confidence from an early age, and had a ready-made group of friends with whom he had much in common."

And although none of the children actually remembers his early religious immersion, whispers that sometimes occur. "We will be on a trip and one of them starts to sing with him," Follow the prophet, follow the prophet … "It's a blast from the past."