Part of Whitney Rose’s personal journey on Season 3 is cutting ties with a major source of toxicity.
We’re not talking about a frenemy.
Whitney is no longer Mormon. But leaving that particular church is not enough.
In order to truly break free, Whitney needs to be formally excommunicated. And for that, she needs help.
On The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City Season 3, Episode 5, Whitney Rose invited a notary public to officially notarize her letter.
The formal letter requests her departure from the Mormon church — officially calling itself the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
This is not Whitney’s first time. Actually, this is her third time attempting to escape the church.
Whitney is undergoing the legal process of leaving the church behind her — forever.
“This is the final piece of ‘goodbye to the f–kin’ man’” she told her husband, Justin Rose, in a triumphant tone.
“Not you,” Whitney then quickly (and hilariously) clarified.
Heather Gay has been vocal about her own journey out of Mormonism and the beliefs that weighed her down.
In fact, during this same episode, she spoke about how she didn’t always see herself as a businesswoman. For a long time, she lived in a world where going into business was for women who “fail” at being a wife and mother.
So when Whitney first tried to sign the letter, she hoped to do it in Heather’s presence.
Whitney grew up within the LDS church.
Like so many Mormons, she did not initially see the organization as she does now.
Given that there are specific ages at which Mormons finally learn about some of their faith’s practices, this is not an uncommon experience.
These days, Whitney sees the Mormon church as being all about power and money.
But, as we noted, simply leaving — no longer believing, no longer attending — is not sufficient.
There are countless stories like Whitney’s on social media. Your name remains on the books, and the Mormon church will actively try to re-recruit people who get away.
Whitney has had this experience.
Some people visit her, showing up at her home, trying to convince her to rejoin.
Others come by hoping to collect money. And no, moving homes does not help. They always find her.
There is only one actual solution: excommunication. Whitney has to formally request, in writing, that the church that she left of her own accord forbid her from rejoining.
For people raised in the church, with family in the church, that can be a daunting or scary prospect. That’s the point.
“They make it so hard to leave,” Whitney explained to the camera, “because if they can keep you there’s a chance that they can reactive you.”
Whitney then pointed out the obvious: “Which means you’ll start paying 10% of your income again.”
“I think it’s all about money and power and control,” she lamented.
Whitney went on: “They’re not trying to save the souls of Zion, they want your 10%.”
Like countless other LDS survivors, Whitney used QuitMormon.com as a blueprint for severing ties permanently.
No one deserves to face harassment and manipulation into joining or rejoining a religious organization. Faith and adherence must always be voluntary — or it’s meaningless.
Good for Whitney. She took control of her life. That takes courage.