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Dear Gramps:

mormon-visitingI tried fellowshipping a lady in my branch who was and still is inactive. I tried to help her whenever she needed help, I spent time with her, I listened to her, etc. Then I discovered that she was constantly lying. She would tell me things that would upset me on purpose, and I later discovered what she had said were lies. I tried to forgive, but her lying continued and got worse. Finally our relationship became emotionally abusive. I kept forgiving and forgiving, and telling myself that I needed to fellowship her since she was inactive. Then I found out that she was also lying about me to others and saying things that could cost me my job. I told her to quit lying to me and about me. She still continues. What is the Christ-like thing to do in a case like this?


Wanting to do the right thing

Dear Wanting to do the right thing,

Fellowshipping does NOT mean that you become a doormat. Forgiveness does not mean that you volunteer to become a doormat again.

“Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” – Anonymous

Some people are happy to be alone in their misery. Give them what they want. Christ does not impose Himself or His gospel upon anyone. He invites others to “Come, Follow me”.

Just because someone is inactive doesn’t mean that we all “bend-over-backwards” to beg them to come back to church. Some people will use and abuse you because you let them.

I would inform the Relief Society President about the situation and I would not go back to visit with her, at least not alone. If you are the Relief Society President, I would inform the Branch President and let her be on his list of contacts.

In any case, a change should be made, and the next person to visit her should be informed and prepared in advance.


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