Sunday, April 12, 2015

REFUGEE - My ExMormom Anthem




So does the word REFUGEE fit a person who has escaped Mormonism?  Oh, yes.  A person who flees for refuge or safety?  Yes again.  A person who flees a power to escape danger or persecution?  For sure.  But does Mormonism really constitute a danger?  Definitely. Mormonism imposes danger on a person's psyche and mental well-being.  It attempts to take away a person's free will.  It takes them on a guilt trip extraordinaire.  It holds people hostage by saying that if they turn their backs on Mormonism that they are throwing away their eternal salvation, thereby ensuring that they will not be part of their eternal family unit.  The chance to have a Forever Family will be denied them. Mormonism gives people the message that if they don't understand certain things, it is their own fault - that they are unworthy and unrighteous.  Routinely, "apostates" face the persecution of being ridiculed and even shunned by members of the Mormon Church as well as their own family members.  I could go on, but I'm sure you get the picture.

So much of this song speaks to me about my Exit from Mormonism.  How I would have liked to known that my father (who was very pious and dogmatic about Mormonism) would have told me, "Listen, it don't matter to me, Diane, you believe what you want to believe."  But of course, I knew that wouldn't happen, that if I had told him I no longer believed in Mormonism and had left the church, instead he would condemn me and tell me I was going to H-E-L-L.  And so I never told him, mainly because he was 90 years old when I left the church and he died two years later.  Sometimes I wish I had told him so we could have had a conversation about my reasons.  But that thought is really quite delusional because that was no way he would have participated in an actual discussion about the topic.  So I kept quiet because I didn't want to destroy the relationship we had (which was fairly easy to do since I lived in California, and he lived in Utah).

So yes, in many ways, I do feel that I was kicked around some.  And for a long time, I did lay there and revel in my abandon.  But like Tom Petty points out, everybody's had to fight to be free.  I finally did fight to be free, and I have never regretted the choice I made to extricate myself from such an unhealthy, stifling environment.  Now I am living an authentic life, and am truly happy.


In October 2010, I attended my first Ex-Mormon Foundation Conference - and during my road trip from Denver to Salt Lake City, I played and sang this song over and over again. When I drove over the border from Wyoming into Utah, I blasted this song and sang it at the top of my lungs.  Felt so good!!

So here's my Ex-Mormon Anthem...

REFUGEE by Tom Petty

We got somethin', we both know it,
We don't talk too much about it,
Ain't no real big secret all the same,
Somehow we get around it.
Listen, it don't really matter to me baby
You believe what you want to believe.

You see, you don't have to live like a refugee
(Don't have to live like a refugee).

Somewhere, somehow, somebody
Must have kicked you around some.
Tell me, why you wanna lay there,
Revel in your abandon.
Honey, it don't make no difference to me, baby
Everybody's had to fight to be free.

You see, you don't have to live like a refugee
(Don't have to live like a refugee)
No baby, you don't have to live like a refugee
(Don't have to live like a refugee)
No!

Baby we ain't the first,
I'm sure a lot of other lovers been burned.
Right now, this ain’t real to you,
But it's one of those things
You gotta feel to be true.

Somewhere, somehow, somebody
Must have kicked you around some.
Who knows, maybe you were kidnapped,
Tied up, taken away and held for ransom.
Honey, it don't really matter to me, baby
Everybody's had to fight to be free.

You see, you don't have to live like a refugee
(Don't have to live like a refugee)
No, you don't have to live like a refugee
(Don't have to live like a refugee)
Now you don't have to live like a refugee
(Don't have to live like a refugee).

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