Polygamous Sect Survivor

This man escaped the polygamous sect he grew up in, and started life from scratch.

Surviving a Polygamous Sect

What is the FLDS?

There are between 40,000 and 50,000 extreme Mormon polygamous sects in the United States. The Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, or the FLDS Church, is one of the largest fundamentalist Mormon groups that practices polygamy. There are a few locations in Arizona, Utah, and South Dakota; however, the headquarters is in Hildale, Utah. First founded in 1929 by Lorin Woolley, the FLDS president is currently convicted child abuser Warren Jeffs. Those who have escaped the FLDS accuse the group of systematic child abuse, rape, and incest.

“I have 29 siblings. My mom is my world. But, Dad will not allow them to talk to me because I’m an apostate. When I left the FLDS I was 17 years old. I couldn’t completely agree with everything they were teaching. If you were caught talking to the neighborhood girl or if you were caught looking at her for too long, then you were in trouble. Say I get a call from — or my dad gets a call— from Warren Jeffs, he’s the only one that could ever do marriages there.. I didn’t want that lifestyle for myself and so I walked out the door at 17. I couldn’t really say goodbye to anyone or things like that because if I did, I knew I wouldn’t be able to walk out the door on my family, -Howard Holm, a former FLDS member, shares with Brut.

Helpful Haircuts

Luckily, Holm has received some help since escaping the cult. Holding Out HELP (helping, encouraging, and loving polygamists) is a program that provides haircuts and connects foster families to hundreds of children adjusting to the culture shock of the outside world. The salon that provides the haircuts, Kelly Cardenas Salon in Salt Lake City, prides themselves on the liberation a new hairstyle provides for these victims.


02/28/2020 9:55 PM
  • 3.0m
  • 735


  • Nana K.
    02/23/2020 13:42

    The white people came to Africa and told us polygamy is evil and turned around to tell us gay marriage is better. Same people who sold human beings in churches

  • Adam E.
    09/20/2019 20:15

    wonder if there’s a documentary on this lot

  • Yollandè G.
    09/15/2019 01:24


  • Joann K.
    09/12/2019 13:44

    Kelly Cardenas is an amazing man!☺

  • James B.
    09/12/2019 03:59

    were them girls from the FLDS

  • Jane F.
    09/11/2019 15:53

    Congratulation for getting out, bu the way you look really good. Good on ya

  • Allie S.
    09/10/2019 15:54

    Being a member of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints I can say we do NOT practice polygamy. I’m not sure why Mormon keeps being thrown around with this, but we do not practice this at all. Our church has stated so many times that we do not believe in this. I’m sure there will be people who reply to my comment, and say mean things but that’s okay.

  • Gizzy J.
    09/10/2019 14:31

    Amazing young man

  • Sarah S.
    09/10/2019 07:05

    It must of been a very dark place for him to of walked out on his entire family and culture he’s only ever known. A massive congratulations for taking the courage to walk away. I sincerely hope you have an amazing future. All the best to you.

  • Nicola B.
    09/10/2019 07:04

    What an amazing human being and to know that the life he lived didn’t feel right, I only wish him well!

  • Fueks E.
    09/09/2019 12:35

    Howard i wish a lifetime of joy, peace and happiness and i hope one day you would be reunited with your family far away from that evil sect🙏🏾

  • Abi P.
    09/08/2019 20:46

    I didn’t know it was this bad

  • Suzanna G.
    09/08/2019 20:01


  • Suzanna G.
    09/08/2019 17:40


  • Emilie W.
    09/08/2019 12:03

    Robertico Gustina

  • Hannah E.
    09/06/2019 23:48

    You are so brave to have left keep working on yourself now that you can be yourself and been strong side note he looks really good with that haircut

  • Gillian W.
    09/06/2019 10:21


  • Deborah B.
    09/05/2019 10:19

    An autobiography of a sect leaver called "The Witness Wore Red" is very moving. It is available as an audio book read by the author. I recommend it.

  • Andy W.
    09/04/2019 12:23

    How incredibly brave and how much courage it must have taken to turn your back on everything and unfortunately everyone to seek a new life take my hat off to him hope it works out for him

  • Nikki V.
    09/03/2019 23:22

    Show tiffah this lmao that program I was talking about