By - Sheistyblunt
My ex husband went full-on crazy with prepping shortly after our daughter was born in 2011. As in, he was convinced that FEMA was shipping large plastic coffins across the US in preparation for a massive “false flag” operation so the government could take away our rights.
He bought child-sized gas masks and told me he would leave me to die with the rest of the “ignorant” when I expressed skepticism and concern about his excessive amount of fear.
Come to think of it, I should really needle him with that the next time he’s an asshole to me. 😂😂😂
There’s something about certain kinds of Mormons who so desperately want to be the ones ahead of the curve…like my ex frequently said things like “They’ll be sorry they made fun of me when the rest of the world is burning and I’m secure.” I was forbidden to talk about our food storage to others because “it would make us a target.”
It really killed my love for him — watching him fantasize about the suffering of others and denying them help.
"desperately want[ing] to be the ones ahead of the curve" to me seems like the natural progression for people who believe their leader can "see around corners" but only give vague "revelations".
This reminded me of that simpsons episode (s24 e9) where homer is invited into a preppers club. The entire thing is making fun of doomsday cults. Homer feels bad about all of the people who didn’t prepare while the preppers are happy to watch them suffer. He steels all the food and drives back to Springfield to share the it with everyone but discovers the world didn’t end after all. The ending perfectly illustrates how horrible it is of these people to not want to share resources with those who didn’t prepare and that those actions would be what throws society into chaos when we should be working together.
Sorry you had to deal with that with your ex that must have been stressful. I remember feeling a little bit stressed out when my husband didn’t find it necessary to prepare for the second coming in any way shape or form but I praise him for it now haha nothing wrong with being prepared but holy cow what unnecessary anxiety!
Lots of genius to be found in the Simpsons
I 100% agree! My Dad and I would watch it together every weekend I saw him. He stopped watching it around season 13 and said that it wasn’t any good after that. I’ve been catching up now some 10 years later and it’s still so amazing and hilarious and to me. I think it was all the accepting of gays and such that he wasn’t down with…and then I ended up gay😂 He couldn’t have liked that they kept hinting that Homer is bi as well. I don’t think he would ever admit that those were some of the reasons though.
Thank you for sharing.
This is my mom still. She keeps buying outdoor winter suits, high insulation tents, tent stoves, cooking items etc. all in anticipation of fleeing to the mountains when society falls apart.
I asked her if it wouldn’t make more sense to try to stay in her home and survive there, what with the solar panels and massive battery along with years of food storage. But no…fleeing to the mountains is the plan.
I guess I'm lucky my husband stuck by me when I went crazy for prepping. I always listened to Julie Rowe online, and some other things. Read a lot of books too. There was one particular that talked about tent cities.... But I can't remember the title. Anyways I'm glad that I'm not that way anymore. I felt so "moved by the spirit" to buy a ton of food that we never used. I hid these purchases from my husband because I didn't want him to get upset at me. I became friends with this couple that was huge into prepping. The husband gave me a blessing without my husband knowing because I had so much anxiety over everything. I wanted my husband to realize how wrong he was in not believing all my feelings about how the world was ending. I was living in fear every day and letting it control me completely. It was not living at all.
Also became friends with another couple, my husband knew the wife before and they lived close to us. They had a ton of kids and were very into prepping. Once the wife felt she could trust me, she showed me her basement. I was in awe of the food storage they had collected in such a short time. They had a huge house and the basement was filled corner to corner and floor to ceiling with buckets of food. I couldn't believe it. She told me that they fully expected to be called out and they were ready to leave society. Well, that didn't happen. Sure hope they could use up all that food. (This was maybe 9-10 years ago)
I still need to control my anxiety when it comes to thinking that things are going to get really bad. I feel a little panic attack when I go grocery shopping here. I'm in Canada and omg it's really bad. Prices are getting to be really ridiculous. Prices are jumping high, in a short period. Baby wipes jumped $5 in a week. Things are getting tough.
But at least I'm not subjecting my children to the crazy stresses of a prepping ideology
It’s really hard to back away from something when you’ve put so much time and energy and resources into it. I really think that my ex can’t go back on it now because of sunk costs.
But yeah, the anxiety. I understand the desire for safety, for certainty. To feel like you have control over something…but it can also be a bottomless pit of fear!
Jeeze, I remember thinking some of these things. Luckily I never seemed to fixate on them like some people.
I just don’t see how the mindset gels with a Christlike attitude — or good survivalism. Like dude, we NEED each other if the world takes a turn for the worse.
For Christmas one year when I was a kid in the 80s our grandparents gave all the grandkids survival backpacks. I was pissed because the girls had sewing kits in theirs but the boys got hunting knives. I was told implicitly these backpacks were for when we walked back to Missouri.
Typing all that out is one more realization for my brain: Holy shit. I was raised in a cult.
Thanks for sharing.
It’s unbelievable how many things seemed totally normal to us during the time, but now that we’re on the outside we can look back and go “holy fucking shit… I was in a cult”
Thanks gramps, but I really wanted a bicycle - because I'm NOT walking to Missouri.
Pioneer children sang as they walked back walked back walked back.
Man childhood in Mormonism was often terrifying. Kids shouldn't be raised in a warzone, even a manufactured one.
Yeah I remember my parents had packs in the garage for "emergency escape". I don't think they were kept up after the first year or two.
Just triggered a memory for me, in the early 90s we had lessons and firesides about what to do when the prophet told the saints to gather in Missouri. Like little role-play exercises and scenarios. So culty.
For my family it wasn’t the mountains, it was that we’d have to flee to Missouri. My parents had a “Missouri Fund” that would cover the plane tickets for our whole family at any time, just in case, and wouldn’t dip into it even if we needed the money elsewhere.
Wow. Thanks for sharing. If I grew up someplace flat instead of Utah I'm sure that would have been the narrative I got.
Ha, I was in Utah too. I think there’s just a lot of theories out there about what’s “going to happen”.
Do they have specific dates they declare the happenings will be happening on or is it just a general and vague "some other time in the future, but definitely soon" type of thing?
I would hate to live under such a negative system. It's just so heavily based in scare tactics and the doom you will bring onto yourself if you don't do what this centuries old book of questionable provenance says to do.
Yeah nah. I don't get it at all. How do the die hards who can't be swayed in their LDS faith at all, justify the really weird origin stories and the rules they let go of for modern times? Wasn't Smith a bit of a dick and spent time in prison too? How does that fit into the LDS story?
My grandma said that too! Go to missouri. We are Canadian and she always had a passport for this event!
They thought that planes would still be flying during the apocalypse?
Pretty sure is the plan was that the prophet would tell them to go to Missouri, then the apocalypse would hit everyone else or something? 🤷♂️
They think they will need over 100 billion in money during said apocalypse.
For a period of time my parents stored a lot of food, water, and gasoline. They’ve since calmed down and now keep a realistic amount of food storage. My brother, on the other hand, refuses to even get a degree because he thinks the end is so near it will be useless as society will collapse.
If you ask me though, he’s using it as an excuse because his poor pregnant wife is the breadwinner and so far she hasn’t kicked his ass out and doesn’t seem to have the backbone for it.
Seems every family has THAT brother (or sister, uncle, cousin...).
Yet we're the Lazy Learners...
> refuses to even get a degree because he thinks the end is so near it will be useless as society will collapse.
Yeah, not like a Medical or Architectural based Degree would be useful when the world's falling to pieces...
My parents didn’t go NUTS with good storage, but they definitely kept more than I think is necessary. That’s one of the things that I don’t think is too big of a deal (to keep food storage), but you have to be responsible in rotating it to use it, and not keep too much
I inherited my childhood home. Spent several days dumping dozens of gallons of 40 year old water in glass containers, ancient sanitary supplies, tons (literally) of wheat. I remember when I was about 7 being sat down and told Jesus would come in 2000 ( which was 40 years away). My whole life I had this background fear of that year. Anyway, we keep a few months worth of food that we eat, as a just-in-case buffer, but not looking for Jebus to show up anytime in the next million years ;)
When my widowed mother downsized, my husband and I cleaned out her house. We fed all the storage food to our pig, who turned out to be the most tender and delightsome other white meat we ever raised.
The WHEAT oh god. There's so much in my parents' home. Very soothing to run your hands through the grains, though that always pissed my mom off for some reason
My mom just spent her inheritance renovating her garage, half of it now is a climate controlled food and water storage for when Doomsday.
No doubt she paid tithing on the inheritance!!
Yes, but not the mountains. My dad still thinks we'll all walk to Missouri when shit goes down and Jebus comes flying back to kill all the muggles. I'm being bombastic but that's not far from the "truth" I was raised with.
We lived in the mountains so there was no fleeing to the mountains for us.
My dad always tried to guilt us into trying harder with his doomsday prepping by telling us how horrible everything would be if we weren't prepared.
He made my sister cry by convincing her that we would have to eat the pets because we wouldn't have enough food because of her. Fun times.
I was the state master gardener coordinator in a state out west and had a service missionary couple who were that way. The wife told me about their food storage and all of their prepped BS. She would also share with me the end of days vision she had.
When I told her about my 'vision', I told her that in th last days, saints would be called up to the stakes of Zion and back to Adam Ondi Aman, the food storage and all the things she has stored up are not for her, but will be for those that come after her as they walk back to Missouri, she looked absolutely dumbfounded,
Her husband died from COVID early in the pandemic, because they were of the mindset that you did not need to mask or vaccinate and blah blah blah.
If only the priesthood was powerful enough to protect and heal against a non existent government conspiracy.
Can relate! It was a constant topic and source of fear for my entire upbringing. As it turns out, most of my extended family are/were fundamentalist extremist members. Didn’t even notice until I distanced myself from the church, and it was jarring when I did.
Everything that happened in the world was viewed through a very Mormon/American-centric doomsday lens. ANYTHING that happened was used to reaffirm the 2nd coming/doomsday that my family was fixated on. Discussions involving things like walking to Missouri, killing other humans to protect our food, civil war, government conspiracy, 3rd hand accounts of terrifying and unsubstantiated Mormon prophecy, protecting our guns with our lives, etc. were not unusual.
Looking back, what a mind fuck. The fact that these types of discussions were so prevalent and unfiltered in front of children is even more ridiculous.
Man I can relate to this in so, so many ways. Glad I’m not the only one who was raised this way and who can look back at how absolutely ridiculously absurd all of it was. Damn it we were raised in cult.
My husband and is had long conversations about what it would be like to walk back to Missouri. We assumed there wouldn’t be a functioning society by then so we’d pack as much wheat as we could in our car, drive the 400 miles out tank of gas would take us, and then faithfully walk the rest of the way. We talked about leaving everything behind and just being super obedient to the call. Now I think about that and I want to gag! We were SO BRAINWASHED!!
Oh my dad was a HARDCORE prepper. Thirty years of “food storage” in the basement along with two PALLETS of ammunition for his 100+ firearms. He told me to wrap his guns in Saran Wrap and dump them in the sump pump tank if “they” ever came for them. We had to prepare for The Last Days!
Now I’m completely estranged from him and my brother, who are both hardcore conspiracy theorists. Sometimes I still feel that little tingle of alarm about current events and then I get angry at how I was raised. Having anxiety drilled into you as a child is a super unhealthy way to be.
The anxiety about the end of the world always hits me when I least expect it. I had a panic attack at the beginning of the semester in a college town Walmart once after reading an article about Betelgeuse maybe exploding and then seeing the milk section totally empty
I feel you. As soon as I read that Russian forces had occupied Chernobyl and there were concerns about them setting fire to the Red Forest, I bought potassium iodide in case I needed to protect my kids’ thyroids from radiation exposure. I still feel alarmist about it, and my husband had to reassure me that I was reacting to one specific event (that was actually real) and not the general “state of the world.”
2 pallets of ammo and 100+ weapons?? Did he get that idea from The Matrix?
How was the food holding up when you last saw him?
The in-laws of my fake ex-best friend believed in stocking up, not really preppers per se, but they definitely prepared in case. They had lots of canned goods and jars of stuff in a huge walk-in pantry. However, they prepped really well in terms of amounts but not with maintenance. They did not rotate out aging stock and lots of canned goods expired and bugs had squeezed their way into the jars of food like spaghetti sauce and it was mainly all spoiled. It was so unfortunate.
Nope, he had all that stuff by the late 90s. Unfortunately, his collection only continued to grow. I cut ties with my dad in 2010, but as of then I’d guess most of the food had gone bad as well.
When my husband and I moved back to my family home briefly to care for my terminally ill mother, my father demanded that I “do something to contribute” to the family food storage. So I learned how to garden and seed save, because he sure as hell had no idea how to do anything but buy freeze-dried crud in buckets.
Not in Utah, but our ward often had testimonies or references to how we were in the last days, the constitution would hang from a thread, and “the boys will come down from the mountains” to save the country.
Yes! In my parents house it always seemed liked the second coming was going to happen next week
I was raised by very conservative Mormons so they would always be warning us about this vague Doomsday. We were not prepared at all though, lol, there was never enough time or money to actually support us kids in the things we really needed, so we definitently didn't have proper food storage and we didn't learn any survival skills or anything, which I feel sometimes made it a bit more stressful, as they would talk about the coming Doomsday constantly and how much trouble the unprepared would be in, and we so clearly fell into the "unprepared" category. And yet, even though we were obviously part of the unprepared group, my dad would get so excited whenever there was a hint of Doomsday finally starting. I've read some of the other comments in this thread and yeah, isn't it so fucked up how Mormons are so excited to be right about the apocalypse so they can watch all the unprepared people suffer? If all that happened, wouldn't it be more Christlike to share your supplies or try to help others in any way you can, instead of laughing at all the people who are struggling now? Mormons are insane fr.
Anyways, when my faith in my dad and the church died down I stopped worrying about their ambiguous Doomsday, and as I'm a minor who's still living at home for these next couple of months, it can be so weird to hear these warnings to a vague Doomsday that they've been repeating throughout my childhood. "You're too tired to go for a walk right now? Well, let's hope you're able to when we can't use our car and have to walk for miles." "You're too full to finish that? Well, when we don't have any more food and we won't be able to get it at the stores anymore, you're gonna wish you had that." Like why are there so many "whens"?!? Sometimes I think, Jesus Christ, no wonder I'm so pessimistic, I was trained from childhood to be expecting this unspecified big bad threat, and they'll still say shit like that constantly. I'm tired lol
My family was crazy like this too. I'm on the spectrum so my mind can't logic this out.
There's really no good logistics to this. My husband is an AF veteran. He spent years in Cheyenne mountain ECT. Thank God he wasn't raised LDS. He has explained how things would work in this situation. WW 3 would not be a ground war. Sorry but it only takes 1 nuclear submarine to take out the world. Nuclear weapons are not the same as in WW11. If it was a ground war all communication and supply chains would be cut off immediately. Doubt anyone could even get anywhere let alone carry thousands of pounds of food on our backs.
If Jesus is real I don't think he would be that big of an asshole. A level of preparedness is always a good idea. I'm on an island on the west coast. We've lost electricity for a week and been unable to get anywhere due to downed trees and power lines. I always have a couple months worth of food and other necessary items. Food we consume daily. I threw out about $1000 dollars worth of food storage 10 years ago. I didn't want to deal with using it. The only benefit was to the church who profited off of it. The terror inflicted on children in the LDS church is sick.
My mother's entire basement is shelves of food storage. It will all end up in the landfill after she is gone. I gave up decades ago trying to get her to be realistic about the quantity. My husband's brother is living off the grid in a bunker somewhere in the mountains by Heber. Two of my nieces actively prophecy of the last days. Their brother is preparing himself to lead the faithful back to Missouri. This is the kind of crazy the Mormon church spawns. They've also started buying guns.
Kinda makes me nervous that those are the type of people who buy guns.
Yes it does.
I remember a 5th sunday lesson about 15 years ago where a wife of one of our local dear leaders got up and said: "The women need to make sure they can carry their packs fully loaded, because if the men are off fighting it may fall on the sisters to march on with out the men."
This was one of me and my brothers favorite moments in our adult church lives. Its crap like this that makes me want to go back sometimes just for the laughs. This woman's is husband is now the local bishop.
My parents were/are a bit more practical and could afford what they spent, fortunately. I remember helping fill up barrels of water that may still be in my parents’ basement.
They mostly had and still have a stock of their commonly used non-perishables, etc. which is actually handy, and useful in a short-term disaster, like when there was flooding or early in COVID when the shelf’s are empty, and my mom shops the best sales to stock up for the year.
That being said, they also have some of the more ridiculous food storage. They have bags of wheat that my mom does use, with her wheat grinder to make whole west flour for baking. They also have oats my mom uses for oatmeal. The problem is they have way more than they’d ever need. No joke, she had more than 1000lbs (like 1200-1400 total) of 50lb bags of oats that got stale but we’re still edible. They’d never eat that much, so we hauled them off to my aunt’s who has horses and even she was surprised with the quantity, having trouble finding mouse-proof storage and it took 6-8 months of mixing a healthy amount in with the horse feed to use it all.
So in summary: having some storage and preparation for a short-term disaster or supply interruption is a good idea. Maybe a week or two. Having a lot more than that is mostly just a waste. A better method would be to have some sort of community stockpile, or a federal emergency management agency that is prepared to respond to incidents…
Sounds kinda like mine, my parents have unnecessary amounts of food storage that hasn't been eaten in 16+ years, and they still replenish and buy more
my dad’s kinda the opposite thankfully. his way of thinking is more folksy - “why worry about the last days? any day could be your last; so be prepared spiritually not physically. appreciate the people in your life, etc.” - is my generous interpretation of his last days philosophy
MORMONISM = The sky is always falling!!! .. because fear creates more cash flow than happy and content..been seeing it since the 50's..they just want to seperate you from your money.
Yep! It's like the old saying goes -
Create the problem, [sell the solution ](https://providentliving.churchofjesuschrist.org/self-reliance/home-storage-centers?lang=eng)
My mom was like that, my dad was sceptical. They balanced each other out enough to become practical prepers. We had two years worth of food storage that we would be continuously eating and replacing, we learned foraging and basic survival skills for urban and wilderness environments, we all learned first aid, etc. Many of these things have been useful in mine and my siblings lives. We lived off our food storage when we couldn't afford to buy food, my sister's first aid saved her husband's life once, a friend and I got lost while hiking as teenagers but knew what to do, and other things. I am thankful for the amount of preparedness I grew up with, I just wish I could have had it without all the doomsday preaching from my mom (even though I fully believed it at the time).
Agreed - practical preparedness without the doomsday rhetoric behind it is smart. Combining the two and dropping the practical part? Loony.
My family (siblings) are still waiting for the call.
My dad has thankfully chilled a bit since then and has left the church but I remember him telling us if Obama got elected in 2008 that it meant Armageddon was near. We got a shitton of food storage and even giant water barrels stashed away and kept them for years after.
Wonder if he remembers...
My in-laws gave us a large chunk of money for food storage. So we bought a four person year supply of freeze dried meals. My wife was really into it at one point because all the relief society at the time was frantically talking about it because of the nephite calendar ending in 2012.
They were doing tons of group buys for things. They were all useless pieces of garbage. I really enjoy backpacking and being outdoors so any time she would ask if we wanted to get in on a supposedly good deal I would ask what situation she was preparing for? Flood, fire, chemical plant explosion, power outage, zombie uprising, nuclear blast, or the collapse of society?
I would then point out that all the stuff they were selling was really bad camping gear. We could spend the same amount and have some good camping gear and all we would need is food. Disasters are either the type that you need to stay where you are and handle not having as much shelter or evacuating your home and heading to a shelter.
At the time I still believed that one day we would all be called to reestablish Zion. Turns out that will never happen but I have some awesome backpacking gear I can use to make memories with my family.
My TBM mom belongs to several “signs of the second coming” FB groups. Shit like “this cloud looks like Jesus, the end is near.” Conspiracy theory garbage like Biden has been dead for a few years and it’s someone wearing a latex mask posing as Biden. And it all ties into TSCC’s last days narrative, so she eats it up.
If you haven't read Educated by Tara Westover, I think you would find a lot of elements you can relate to.
I grew up with no room for monsters under my bed because the space was full with size ten cans. Everything was a sign of the times, and the world was a terrible, scary scary place. I was terrified that I would be allowed to grow up into adulthood before Jesus came back or we had to trek to Adam-ondi-ahmen to rebuild Zion or whatever. It's so incredible to be free from that fear now
The idea that the church will one day "call out" faithful members to live in the mountains, ahead of the calamities that the events of the second coming will bring, is TRULY a cult within a cult. So culty that many members of the main cult (TSCC) think the sub-cult has lost their minds and all need to be execommunicated.
I have significant connections to that "cult within a cult". I was once so involved that I taught classes on this topic, organized meetings, I wrote and published a book (under a different name) and I have significant connections to people like Roger K Young (author of many books on this topic), Julie Rowe, Chad Daybell, and MANY others. I've even had conversations with the Q15 about what we were doing.
I really believed this stuff. And I preached those same ideas to my own family and kids. My parents are still deeply into that stuff.
I've often thought an AMA would be really interesting on that topic, but it would be impossible without doxing myself and doing significant damage to some relationships that I have.
But.. I'd be happy to answer high-level questions on that. I can tell you every detail about where those beliefs came from, timelines, quotes and scriptures those beliefs are predicated around, and what that community is like. I can also explain why once you're in at that level, it's nearly impossible to objectively look at reality anymore.
**Basically, if you want to understand the mentality of the people who believe that the church will call everyone to go live in the mountains some day..... I'm your guy.**
Oh my goodness, could you start a separate thread for questions? That would be FASCINATING. I'm a NeverMo but lived in Utah for a long time. The nanny I hired for my children was Mormon and really became part of our family. Mostly good stuff there, but she introduced me to prepping and I became obsessed. I had a year's supply for my family (based on required calorie intake) and spent thousands of dollars at The Ready Store. I now look back and scratch my head wondering what the hell that was about for me personally, but on a higher level, I have lots of questions....
And yes, I have deep regrets about the fear I likely instilled in my children. Hopefully they'll just remember that mom always had lots of water, flashlights and extra batteries and not that I made them sample MREs.
Omg yes please!
Are you able to donate anything to a homeless shelter or food bank before it spoils completely?
When I was a child, going to church used to scare me because there was so much "these are the latter days" talk. My parents had some food storage, and I always wondered why we needed to store food and water for years if it was the end of time.
I was raised with having 5 years of storage for our family of six. It got really bad when Julie Rowe and the NDEs were making the rounds. My family would travel around the state to listen to her and others speak.
My parents would gather us adult children for Sunday dinner which turned into crazy lectures from my dad who always " had a guy on the inside ". Jade Helm was going to take us down. Obama being president was a major sign. The government was out to kill us every day.
My dad tracked some astrology shit and the blood moons. He did extensive research on this and was dead set it was coming any day.
They attend huge camps where people go to use their gear and how to live off the grid.
Spent over 60k on supplies. Each Christmas gift since 2005 is food storage. Water barrels. Ammo. They bought 2 trucks to pull their 2 30ft trailers full of crap.
They thought the church would send trucks to gather everything the ward members had. They didn't want their stuff mixed in. They were not about to share supplies with anyone and stated people would get shot trying.
They have full-on hidden rooms, like 19x20 rooms behind drywall full of various supplies. My mom bought delivery kits from the local hospital, intense first aid kids. Promoted my sister to go into nursing so she could heal us. She was against me getting a dog at 28 and came around saying because he was a German shepherd he would fight off attackers at camp.
My stupid ex-husband bought a dirt bike. She hated him wasting money. Then it became OK because he needed quick transportation to get away from enemies and go sniper someone.
She hated the grandkids playing any type of shooting game, games cause violence right? Then she up and decided they needed to get used to carnage and be confident in killing someone if needed.
I have been thinking about this a lot lately and I am sick to my stomach that I was so afraid and that education, finances, nothing would matter soon.
Each time I had extra money, my mom had me buying all sorts of pepper stuff. My 3 kids had 500$ in their bank account. She freaked me out so much saying they needed supplies, not money, that I spent it on cots and kid-sized stuff they never touched.
All the time and money wasted. Always living in fear of doomsday is already traumatic. Then mix in the rest of the trauma the church causes.
I could go on and on with all of this ridiculousness but I'll stop here.
Aside from what you normally expect of prepper parents (giant garage floor full of hundreds of thousands of $$ of organized supplies, a bunker, etc) my mom was so far in, she suggested my older TBM single sister would need to marry our older TBM single step-brother in order to be protected and "claimed" in the end times. At which point my sister decided she would travel the opposite direction should the world end.
One year for Christmas my parents gifted all of their adult children (they have 19 kids total) a year supply of food storage for their size family.
My parents were convinced that the apocalypse would start in the mid-90’s. To be ahead of the curve we moved to a remote off-grid cabin, built up our food storage, and waited for the fireworks.
We didn’t even put much effort into homeschool, because Jesus doesn’t care how well you get math.
My parents would carefully dissect each General Conference with their friends for clues to how much time we had left. We were perpetually months away.
But it all worked out in the end. I may have lost out on a happy childhood, but at least I know how to light a house with kerosene lamps.
Growing up in the church ... both my home and my community were fully prepping for the end of the world.
We had a pallet of wheat in bags...it then went into large tins because of weevils/moisture ...it then started to go off in large tins and so we were forced to eat it and throw much of it away.
We had thousands of cans of food .. but then one day realized that our can opener was electric and so we ran to the store to get a hand held one.
You had to schedule your time once every few months with the electric wheat grinder from the ward and that was severely fought over as some would keep it longer than their allotted 2 days or whatever and it broke down a lot and everyone was blaming each other etc. as the world might end while you were waiting for the electric one and be forced to use a hand crank one.
My parents found out then that canned food can go off and so most of my childhood was eating wheat and canned food in the process of expiring.
I thought a large part of my future would be cranking a hand crank wheat grinder to make flour.
I learned to add a cup of milk and a block of cheese to canned spaghetti O's and then to fry the mixture making a type of crusty pancake. Follow me for more prepping Mormon recipes LOL.
Many Homes in my neighborhood had backpacks for each family member packed up and ready near the door to run into the hills. We had a few backpacks ready to go but mostly just bags that could be thrown into the car quickly.
A few prepping communities actually formed in the mountains around my home town pre-empting the second coming/apocalypse.
That was 50 years ago. The end did not come. Jeebus did not come. Teaching Apocalypse for all those years led to entire generations hoping for the end of the world rather than trying to build a better one.
At the beginning of 2008 my ex in-laws went crazy about being called to hole-up and hide in the mountains with the other prepared saints...but only the prepared ones. They told us we wouldn't have time to harvest in the fall. By summers end we would be in tents, in the mountains, with all our food storage. They bought 18-1year for 1 person kits from Emergency Essentials. I never looked it up to be sure but I'm guessing that's $20K-ish. I remember looking at the bedroom full of boxes with my SIL and whispering to her, "That's our inheritance. One fourth of that."
My uncle is supposedly a right hand man of Julie Rowe. My aunt is connected to Tara Westover’s family. Many family reunions were spent discussing ‘Visions of Glory’ and how soon it will probably all happen. Occasionally we would get emails from my uncle warning us of the great earthquake that was about to happen. Thankfully my parents had a healthier mentality but a lot still filtered into my kid brain and I would feel extremely anxious about the future.
I agree it is not a healthy way to raise a child. Have you ever read Educated? You might relate to it a lot.
I’m a NeverMo. It’s not just Mormons, but I knew Mormons who had plans. My TBM ex told me about his plans with his family to get their g-clad asses to some place in the middle of nowhere AZ. He’s a BYUI student, so do with that what you will. I’m fairly sure they’ve modified their contingency plans.
Then there’s eschatology obsessed Christians. I grew up learning a lot About eschatology to a point of almost obsession in my teen years. Although I’ve long since past that. My PIL’s are obsessed with it and total conspiracy theorists. You name it, they believe it. Chem trails? Yup. Any right wing COVID conspiracy? Mhmm. One world/globalization? You know it. Illuminati? Affirmative. 5G? Aye. It makes it hard to watch anything with them because my FIL will work it in somehow. Anything from Forrest Gump to Band of Brothers. They religiously watch a YouTuber who talks about eschatology. He’s whatever, but the guests he has on are complete nut jobs. And they buy the books/documentaries. Fortunately, my fiancé is reasonable. We’ve agreed to not have our children around that at all for multiple reasons.
I was raised with that mentality - it’s honestly taken a few years to try and de-brainwash myself from it. Is it good to be prepared? Sure. But I was raised with that mindset to an absolute extreme. My parents spent thousands of dollars on food storage. My grandfather would tell us all of his dream that he would say was prophetic of the end-time and in his dream it was our family involved in a shoot-out with “evil people” and that he was too old to fight so he would reload for us. As a kid surrounded by TBM’s and being told this by the patriarch of the family I bought it hook-line-and-sinker. I grew up around Mormon zealots in my family who preached end-of-times and doomsday rhetoric frequently. Looking back I can see how damaging it all was.
Now that I’ve stepped away from the church I’ve developed such a better healthy outlook on the future. There’s not the constant stress, anxiety and fear of “when the second coming will be”, and what supplies and vehicles and weapons we will need to get to Missouri for the next gathering as the world crumbles into chaos and mayhem.
Now I enjoy my children more, I plan for retirement better, I enjoy my time in the moment more and without fear of “the last days” bullshit. Life is MUCH, MUCH more pleasant without that mindset.
My stepdad's family bought everyone food storage in the early 2000s and it set them off on a prepper path. They are kinda smart about it though and use the food in storage, replacing it as needed so it doesn't go to waste. The problem is that it isn't for Mormon reasons, just crazy alt-right reasons. You can take the person out of a cult, but you can't take the cult out of the person.
Grew up in Missouri and our extended family on my Dad’s side would always express their jealousy at how we were so much closer to Adam’s Dominion or whatever than they were, and that we would for sure be safe in the end times based on our location as opposed to all of them being spread around in the Morridor.
My MIL has improved in that she’s no longer gifting my husband food storage and prepping supplies for Christmas, so that’s nice. Our first year married was fluff n stuff for me as my present, and a handheld crossbow with darts that could be used to kill small game. It broke after the first use but those darts did go through sheet rock during the first and only use.
My parents are mild preppers. They have an insane amount of food storage. (Most of its expired and half of it they’d never be able to use anyway, like wheat they have no idea how to cook.) We always had emergency backpacks and similar growing up. My mom backs her car into the driveway (they can’t park in the garage because it’s full of their shit) in case there’s an emergency and she has to leave quickly. Her trunk is full of emergency stuff too.
They didn’t talk much about the “saints” leaving for Missouri, but it was an idea I knew about.
Now I’m wondering if they would actually go if the prophet suddenly decided to make the announcement or if they’d find some excuse to stay because they don’t want to leave all their crap. Probably the latter.
Fear based control…sigh
My parents always had a 72 hour kit. Every year we'd go through it for Family Home Evening and take out all the almost expired food to replace it with fresh food. We also had a massive garden and huge amounts of frozen and canned food. Our family friends gave us survival/camping stuff every year for Christmas. (A lot of it got used during the boy's campouts. Never had a girls campout, other then the few days at girls camp.)
As an adult, I have a couple cases of beans, corn, and tomato sauce, but I work through them. Not gonna let my food go bad. I also have a INCH bag (I'm never coming home) full of water filters, knives, lighters, etc. Never plan to use it, but it's nice to have. Once I turn 21, I'm adding the little bottles of alcohol to it. It's nice to have in case of fire or other emergency.
My family invested enough into food storage that I think it was still a good idea, not enough to be crazy. I think a certain amount of prep is good for anybody. I remember based on time frames my dad would say, being convinced that the full on millennium would begin before I was 30 (I was around 10 at the time) and even believing for a long time that my family and one or two other families may be the only survivors after all the destruction. My dad was a obit cuckoo, thankfully my mom was the bread winner and in charge of finances, so we didn’t make any financially awful decisions (aside from pay tithing). It’s funny, cause I recently placed a bet with my older brother that if Jesus doesn’t return within 20 years that he owes me $500. Unfortunately, I owe him $500 if Jesus DOES return. But I guess that means I win either way!
Have you read Educated by Tara Westover? Her story would definitely apply here
Actually had a bishop go full on crazy decades ago while we were living in the Beaverton, Or. area. He stood one Sunday and informed us that God had told him the time had come for the Saints to pull up stakes and head for Missouri, to gather in Zion. He then excused the women and children to go to their Sunday School and R.S. classes, and instructed the men and boys 12 and over to remain in the chapel with him to start planning our exodus.
The Stake President was meeting in his office at this time our ward was meeting in the Stake Center, and my husband was at the head of a pretty large group of men who went to knock on his door and demand that the poor deluded man be released as bishop. The S.P. said he was busy now, but would think about it. My husband told him his first move when we got home was to call LDS Headquarters to lodge the complaint. The bishop was released the following Sunday.
He wasn't at church for quite a while after that. I believe he had a full on nervous breakdown and ended up involuntarily committed for a while.
My grandma bought insane amounts of wheat and other grains to store for "the last days." Mice got into it and destroyed all of it, and it was a nightmare to clean up.
My dad was convinced the end was near (in the '70s) and that toilet paper would be the currency between when the government failed and when the church stepped in to save the day. So, in addition to our year's supply, we also had many cases of TP in the garage. After he died in 2008 and we moved my mother into a memory unit at a care home in 2015, my brothers and I went in to clean out their house and threw away all the spoiled food and split up the toilet paper. I took home 72 rolls. So when the world ends I'll be rich. 🤑 😂
Also: Just remembered that he had also printed out maps of the best walking routes from our home in Oregon to Jackson County, Missouri and even bought backpacks for the whole family, even the indoorsy ones, for when they'd be needed for the walk to "Zion."
My grandmother was supposed to be alive during the second coming. Guess she was a wicked old hag… I’ll see her in hell.
My husband went full Julie Rowe a few years back and it almost ended our marriage. He’s still a believing member but the doomsday talk has chilled (and he recognizes that he took things way too far).
Even as a TBM I was never a full prepper, but I do like to grow my own food and keep dry goods (wheat, rice, beans, etc.) on hand. It has gotten us through some lean years financially.
**Was anybody else raised in a household where Doomday (sic) was imminent and at any moment the prophet would call for all devout Mormons to flee to the mountains?**
Nope. Child of the Cold War here. Grew up and still live outside the Morridor. Not many mountains to flee to in the Central Plains. Our family had some stocks of basic staples and such, but nothing like the Preppers of today.
We lived near an active Air Force Base and the dominant belief in our family was that the Russians would just nuke everything around in order to achieve a hit. So, no big deal. Sirens go off, bright flash, and we're all suddenly wearing white clothes and talking to Jesus.
It also didn't sit well with the non-members in these parts that we'd have food and they didn't. That meant building up a small stockpile of arms to defend the food stash and best not let the neighborhood know what we were hording. Several science-fiction episodes of Outer Limits and Twilight Zone explored those themes, yet we silently lived those scenarios hoping ours would have a happier ending.
Exactly how the prophet was supposed to call us to flee was never established. Even a small nuke exchange would have knocked out all forms of modern communication, so the Holy Ghost would've told us maybe?
They’re called “latter day” saints for a reason, yeah. That’s what all the food storage was about, and it was typical.
It was an underlying theme as it has been from the beginning of Mormonism.
I had a mission companion that was an insane “prepper” and would stockpile our food. His family was obviously the same way and had 10 years worth of preserved food. I can’t imagine how crowded their storage room must have been
Back in the 1980’s, I remember the night a transformer blew in our neighborhood. It was loud. It startled us. My father jumped off the couch and mentioned that the Second Coming would be just like that.
My family had a food storage but we also had like 5 tornadoes pass over our house every year.
I have an uncle however who is a total doomsday prepper and thinks that you have to live out in the middle of nowhere and can't trust public school etc etc.
Mormons are very prone to believing conspiracy theories tho so it's not surprising that a lot of them get intense about doomsday.
Anytime I got home and no body was home I thought for sure I had missed the end of times and all my family was off to Missouri with Jesus and I missed the boat for being unworthy (cussing, having immoral thoughts). Probably twice a year we’d re-do our emergency 72 hour kits to keep us prepped for doomsday. I remember stealing the cash out of them when I was 16 and looking for tree money lmao
Yeahhh fucking traumatic.
Yep. My mom loved to read NDEs and use them to substantiate the idea. It was a very anxious growing up. I remember panic about Y2K and 2012. She got me cloth diapers for my second baby because the end was nigh (that was in 2016). 2020 was another. And here we still are in 2023.
"Signs of the times" was a constantly uttered phrase in my home. So yes.
I feel like some of this attitude of hoarding comes from the parable of the 10 virgins. Like, “hey, you were told to prepare and get enough oil for your lamps… It’s not our fault you didn’t heed that warning! We can’t share our oil with you”.
I can’t help but wonder if that’s kind of what the church is doing right now with their hundred billion dollar horde. Instead of caring for the poor and needy right now they are just holding onto it, perhaps for some unknown date at the end of the world when their hundred billion dollars is going to save only the most faithful. At least, I’ve heard that idea tossed around since the church said they’re “saving it for a rainy day.” Though how the hell you can decide you’re $100 billion is really worth anything at that point.
But I digress.
My family was never that big into prepping but my mom‘s been alluding to getting ready for the last days for decades. She also has a rotting food storage that she’s invested thousands of dollars in.
I find the doomsday mentality in the church fascinating for a few reasons. First of all, the inability of some church members to distinguish fantasy from reality in terms of "end times" is on full display. Thinking that the election of a moderate Democratic black president in 2008 was some kind of harbinger of doom is not only intensely racist but simply unhinged from reality. Oh no!, he might introduce a bill that keeps you on your parent's insurance until age 26, surely the end is near.
Secondly, I sense there is an attitude in the exmo community to dismiss collapse/doomsday scenarios because of our exposure to "the sky is falling!" crowd. But if we look at actual physical reality here for a minute, there are some pretty concerning trends that make predictions of collapse (abrupt or otherwise) seem at least partly grounded in reality. The war in Ukraine could literally end up with the end of civilized life on earth. (Not saying it's *likely*, but there's a non zero chance of global nuclear war). There's climate change. Even the collapse of the United States isn't very hard to image. Actually, considering that all empires eventually fall it begins to sound far fetched that the US will remain the sole superpower indefinitely.
I just finished listening to John Larsen on Mormon Stories talk about Normalcy Bias, and how humans (mormons and exmormons included) tend to think things will keep going as they are and will downplay or have non-reactions to predictable crisis. To me, it seems as though I'm in a bus driving toward a brick wall so I say "Dang, I think we're gonna hit that brick wall" but my friend turns to me and says "Yeah, but the dude in the back has been saying the bus will get swallowed by a whale for the last hour and so far nothing's happened, so don't worry". One doomsday prediction can be garbage but it doesn't rule out predictions of catastrophe backed by at least *some* empiricism and rationality.
Yep! I have so much prepper anxiety, and superstition. I'm always waiting for something to go wrong. Although the actual being crazy prepared thing has had good side effects too, like we had seven months of toilet paper in stock before we even heard of covid, so we were unaffected by that bit of scarcity and panic buying.
I no longer believe in fleeing to the mountains, but for our own rainy days it's been nice. But that dang doomsday anxiety cloud is always lingering, and gave me more fear than anything, that I'm trying to constantly work through it.
Check out the song, Shape of a Shield, by Brian Laidlaw and the Family Trade.
In a nutshell it's a song written about preppers from the perspective of a couple who moved to Utah (Sanpete specific) for a while, and observed the people there.
My family literally moved to a small town in the mountains in 1999 so we would be OK for the coming apocalypse in 2000. I think the fact nothing happened really hurt my dad's testimony.
I totally believed we would have to escape to the mountains or to “tent city”. I also read Visions of Glory and was completely sold on it being a vision of the future. I look back now and think where the hell was my mind??