I have been blessed with having experienced two car accidents. The first one was the start of me leaving the church and the second was the catalyst for me returning.
Why I mention them is I have subsequent memory problems, which is undoubtedly a blessing. I was raped at the age of 14. I had always blamed myself for this, because firstly I had lied to my mom as to where exactly we were and secondly I said yes to a Coca Cola (Which had been laced with vodka) Had I stuck with my usual morals- not lying to mother and NOT drinking Coke I never would have been passed out on a bed and taken advantage of by a senior in my school.
This was the start of me leaving the church. This was in the 80’s and I could not even contemplate sharing this with my mother, never mind my bishop. Mom being mom knew something was wrong and the truth came out. And this is where my memory gets foggy. I do not remember the exact happenings, but I remember the feelings of shame and disgust as I had to work through this violation of not just myself, but my dream of being a virgin when I married my RM was gone too. Instead of offering counselling I was met with rebuke and made to feel guilty of my choices. I richoched back and forth for a few years, but by my early twenties I did not consider myself an LDS. My relationship with my Heavenly Father became a stabilising force, ecspecially during my darkest moments. Divorce, alcoholism, death of a husband, drug use, more alcohol abuse and if it was not for my beautiful daughter I was blessed with I don’t think I would still be here. It took me finding my way back again, with a steadfast faith and testimony in our Heavenly Father, that I am able to stand here and not blame anybody. I just want to point out that creating shame and focussing on the bad act at certain ages has long lasting impressions. Kill with kindness and let love guide all our interactions with each other.