Wednesday, July 9, 2014

The insidious nature of the Mormon church toward women....

I have seen a disturbing trend among Mormon women.  It isn't their fault. I chalk it up to the teachings and environment of this toxic organization.  It is far reaching and affects every single member, male and female, young and old.  I have seen it in my personal life.  My wife has struggled with it. Especially now,  since I would be considered an apostate.  It plays out in the lives of my children although they may not see its impact.  I want to address the issue of self worth among Mormon women.

I have stated how the Mormon church has drained the life out of its members.  I would dare say that it destroys lives.  I see this in my own situation.  Every single day is a struggle to keep a  20+ year marriage together.  Marriage is difficult enough without dealing with religious differences.  But now  I  see how the Mormon church compounds everything ten fold.

The church is so pervasive in its members lives that it literally affects all major decisions of the believer but it runs deeper than that for a woman.  It affects every aspect of a woman's self worth.  The church teaches that a woman's role is to be a wife and mother.  This should come before everything.  It can cause major conflict in their lives.  What if a woman wants to be a physician?  What if she wants to be an attorney?  What if she doesn't like children.  There is no wiggle room.  They will be treated like an anomaly.  She will be treated like an outsider or agitator.  She isn't following the group think.

Another part of this mindset can cause an even more detrimental effect to the woman.  Once she begins to be fully invested in the Mormon narrative, she may start placing her self worth on the "righteousness" of her husband, his callings and faithfulness to the church.  Her whole self identity  is based on someone else's beliefs and actions.  That is why a woman has such a difficult time when her husband leaves the church.  She can't get to the celestial kingdom without her man.  Thus her self worth or worthiness is in jeopardy because of someone else.

As disturbing as that is, I have seen another trend that is more detrimental.  One where the woman thinks her personal worthiness is based on her husband's callings in the church.  If her husband is only ever a Sunday school teacher, the wife may think she is doing something wrong.  She may feel she is not right in God's eyes.  I see this in my own life.  According to my patriarchal blessing I was to called as a bishop.  It didn't happen and obviously won't happen now. This really bothers my wife.  She internalizes it and unfortunately puts strain on our marriage.

I feel this is where the church does it's most damage.  It doesn't foster in women their own individual self worth.  Women's self worth is always tied to a man, and if her Knight in shining armour has tarnished his shield it's game over.


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