Shattered Dreams

Shattered Dreams

My Life as A Polygamist's Wife

Book - 2007
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Irene Spencer did as she felt God commanded in marrying her brother-in-law Verlan LeBaron, becoming his second wife at age 16. When the government raided the fundamentalist, polygamous Mormon village of Short Creek, Arizona, Irene and her family fled to Verlan's brothers' Mexican ranch. They lived in squalor and desolate conditions in the Mexican desert with Verlan's four brothers, one mentally ill sister, and numerous wives and children--Irene herself bore thirteen. The dramatic story of her life, and her escape to an outside world for which she was little prepared, reveals how far religion can be stretched and abused and how one woman and her children found their way to truth and redemption.--From publisher description.
Publisher: New York : Center Street, 2007
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9781599957197
Branch Call Number: 289.3092 SPE
Characteristics: viii, : ill. ; 24 cm


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Feb 25, 2020

Irene's story is a blow by blow indictment of polygamy. Ironically, God is blamed for this strict unnatural "marriage" system; while the complete opposite is the truth. God lovingly designed a beautiful institution of marriage between one man and one woman; which has the potential to be a reflection of Christ's love and provision for His own Bride. To see such a sorrowful perversion of marriage lived out with such devastating results, is heartbreaking. The unnecessary poverty of heart, soul, and body, of one man trying to provide for the needs of so many is a valiant but misguided and impossible effort. My heart breaks for Irene and all who have lived in this soul withering "Principle," and those who still are living in it. My prayer is that many can see God for who He really is, loving and kind, as Irene finally saw Him. And that they cease from their own labors, and receive God's freely given Grace in Christ Jesus instead.

Apr 01, 2019

I've read this, and her other book probably 5 times over the years. Why?? Because of it's honesty. Some reviewer's call her a "Mormon" but she classified her self as an early FLDS which mainstream Mormons do not want to be labeled as.

It was hard for me to find parallels in how her religion was USED as a way to control everything about her life. My ex husband was NOT religious, but he used the bible to control me because I was. I felt him pull it out and hit me over the head with it for anytime he thought I didn't follow his rules. He was raised Baptist...I was Church of Christ...the old timey sort that didn't allow pants on women in church...or instruments in church, etc.

A lot of the manipulations that Verlan used on Irene, in this book, was eyeopening to me for it showed me that similar had been done to me for years when I was young and stupid. I've seen other men, not religious, use similar manipulations on their wives...but when they can use the carries more weight. Wish I had read this back when I was 20.

Feb 16, 2014

Sad. Disgusting. Outrageous. Incredible. Nauseating. Believable.

Irene Spence suffered over a quarter of a century in a plural marriage before she finally came to realize she needed to follow her own common sense.

This cult has and still is destroying the lives of young women and children. And it's being supported by the American taxpayers. Places of rescue should be created to give these severely abused women a safe place to seek shelter.

Hard to stomach but a necessary read.

Jan 25, 2012

true story, many details describing events linking BC, USA and Mexico. Very impacting and gives you an understanding as to why the women stay. Brave woman to write this book.

Jul 05, 2011

This is a very detailed account of the first few decades of the life of a God-fearing Mormon young woman. While the story is certainly fascinating material for those not familiar with the Mormon beliefs of plural marriage, the tragic events experienced by the author become somewhat repetitive in their description. Only a few remarks at the beginning and in the final chapters of the book show the author's change of heart regarding her faith, when she realizes that the core principles are based on inequality between men and women. It seems almost unbelievable that the author's abject poverty, deplorable health conditions, while suffering through a dozen or so pregnancies and births, is something that was experienced by a woman in twentieth century North America.

mattsam Jul 04, 2011

Interesting look into the lifestyle..well written but a sad story


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