[Editors Note: This individual’s name has been changed to preserve anonymity]
I support the FreeBYU movement because I believe everyone should have the freedom to live authentically and explore their faith without fear of explosion.
In high school, I was a super Mormon seminary star type of young woman. My testimony was strong and I loved everything the church had to offer. BYU seemed like the perfect fit. When I arrived at BYU, I would never have even fathomed I’d have serious questions. In my early 20’s, I went through the temple. It brought up a lot of questions for me regarding our doctrines on women. I became a more serious student of the gospel, and dove into learning about our doctrines and history, prayerfully seeking peace. Fearful of anti-Mormon literature, I originally studied only from things published by the church and found at Deseret Book. I found more questions and less answers.
I’m still figuring out what all of this means for me. Somedays I want to leave the church. Other days I want so badly for it to be true. Either way, I know I want to be able to express my beliefs and advocate for the issues I feel strongly about. But for now, it doesn’t really matter what I want. Things may change, but for now I’m staying quit and hoping to make it through.
I have no problem following the standards of dress and behavior outlined in the honor code while a student. I would never try to take other people away from what they believe and love. I still love how the church helps people and can help make people better. I have respect for BYU and love the quality of education it provides. I don’t understand why having former-Mormons that can commit to being positive and contributing members to the school aren’t welcome. I simply want to explore my faith and have the freedom to live what I feel is right without fear of losing years of academic progress. This policy simply doesn’t make sense.