Hi! My name is Anja.
I'm a proudly queer neurodivergent trans woman. I was a Mormon.
I grew up immersed in the Mormon faith. I was homeschooled (due to academic concerns, not faith reasons), which meant the church was my entire community. I was a model Aaronic Priesthood holder, served an honorable full-time mission in Hong Kong from 2002-2004, and was an active member of my local singles ward until I aged out of it.
I'm also a queer trans woman (I realized I was trans in June 2020 and started transitioning basically immediately), officially diagnosed with ADHD, and probably autistic.
On my shelf
On the Mormon Spectrum
# Why I left More stories of 'Why I left' the Mormon church
When the church began openly pushing against gay marriage in the late 90's and early 2000's, I struggled to reconcile that with the 11th Article of Faith, where we supposedly allow all others to worship according to their own conscience. But I believed in following the prophet, so I mostly kept my doubts to myself.
Then in 2013, I moved from the heavily Mormon area in the Phoenix area I'd lived most of my life to Texas, and found myself working with openly gay coworkers for the first time. Getting to know actual people in the LGBTQ+ community, combined with a church scene where I no longer had the comfortable friendships I'd made with other more progressive and nuanced Mormons even as the things being said over the pulpit and in Sunday School and Priesthood got more narrow-minded, only intensified my concerns, and I started struggling to find the motivation to stay involved.
Then came the November 2015 policy changes, and I simply could not continue. I could not reconcile the Divine I knew from my own spiritual experiences with the policies punishing and ostracizing children for the actions of a parent. And I couldn't believe men who were supposedly special witnesses of Christ could approve something so egregious and still trust their claims of revelation and guidance. And since, as I was told by leaders for so many years, the church was either God's true church or a complete fraud, I left.
Questions about Mormons My Answers to Questions about Mormonism
#Link to this answer of 'Are you happy?' by anjaisagirl Are you happy? See more answers about 'Are you happy?'
I am happy! Even with the ongoing genocidal attacks on trans people in America right now, transitioning and living as my fullest self has brought me more peace and joy more consistently than I ever found in the LDS faith.
#Link to this answer of 'Have you had any profound spiritual moments in your life?' by anjaisagirl Have you had any profound spiritual moments in your life? See more answers about 'Have you had any profound spiritual moments in your life?'
I've had deep spiritual experiences my whole life. I've always felt the love of the Divine strongly, and if anything that's gotten stronger since I left the church. My name, Anja, was given to me by Spirit after I'd realized I was trans and was starting my transition - it means "grace".