Petition Already Protecting Children

Lion Protecting CubsToday, this message showed up in my inbox:

Hi Sam – I wanted to reach out personally and thank you for what you’re doing.  My wife has struggled with my evolution of beliefs over the past year.  So, I’ve been reluctant to bring up church stuff with her.  Yesterday, out of the blue, she said to me, “Have you heard about that petition?” 

That kick-started a conversation during which she openly and passionately agreed with your message and proclaimed how she won’t allow our daughters to be questioned alone with a Bishop and not at all on worthiness and sexuality. 

My oldest daughter is a few months away from youth interviews and I had been worried about how to handle the desire to protect my children, while also not harming the very fragile relationship I have with my wife in relation to the church.  It couldn’t have gone better. 

She’s considering sharing the petition on her facebook timeline.  Her mama bear has come out.

Thank you.  Sincerely.


The petition is now at 6,010 signatures.

However…..this is NOT the most important statistic.  The real significance is what’s happening in homes and families.  Several members have now resolved to protect their children from being taken behind closed doors, all alone, with an untrained older man.  And then probed about masturbation and other sexually oriented matters.

Stand Up to Protect Our Vulnerable Children

Help me and 6,000 other thundering voices to eradicate this dangerous and damaging practice.

Sign the Petition.  Share the Petition.

Additional Resources

I’m Mormon. I’m Mad. I’m Going to the Temple.

Creative documentary wedding photography by Melissa Kelsey PhotographyTL;DR

On Dec 1st  & 2nd, 2017, my 87 year old mother and I will be on the sidewalks outside of temple square.  Our mission:

  1. Raise awareness of LDS youth interview practices.
  2. Notify members and non-members alike of the petition:  Protect Our Children–Stop Mormon Masturbation Interviews.
  3. Ask for signatures.
  4. Pass out information.


A wise man once said this, “Hope has two beautiful daughters; their names are Anger and Courage.  Anger at the way things are, and Courage to see that they do not remain as they are.”

I love my mother, Hope.  Often my twin sister, Courage, fails me.  Today, Anger motivates me to embrace my sister, Courage.  I don’t want to let either of them go….until mother Hope is fulfilled.

A Temple Visit

On December 1st and 2nd, I’m going to the Salt Lake Temple.  No church issued Recommend will be in my possession.  Instead, my Recommend has been issued by that timeless mother–Hope.  At the same time, I’ll be accompanied by my earthly mother–Bertie.  My amazing 87 year old mom, whom I was blessed with 65 years ago.

From early morning until well into the evening, she and I will be on the sidewalks, in the shadow of the Salt Lake Temple.


Petition:  Protect Our Children–Stop Mormon Masturbation Interviews.  Click HERE.

Why this petition matters.  Click HERE.

Testimonials of masturbation interviews.  Click HERE.

Testimonials of interviews about orgasm and sexual positions.  Click HERE.

How to talk to your kids about masturbation.  Click HERE.

Is masturbation a sin?  Click HERE.


Mormon Church Calls on Teenagers to Ask Other Teenagers if They Masturbate

LDS Missionaries

The title above turns my stomach.  This is my damn church.  What the hell are we doing!!!

During my brother’s full-time mission, he was called to serve as a zone leader.  One of his responsibilities:  take other teenage full-time missionaries behind closed doors and ask them is they masturbate.  What the hell!!!

A teenager being tasked by his mission president to ask other teenagers “specific and explicit” sexual questions.  This doesn’t qualify as inappropriate.  IT….IS….HORRENDOUS.

Here’s a snippet of our recent conversation:

ME:  How did you feel about that?

BRO:  It was weird.  I hated those interviews.  Prying and asking those questions.

ME:  Did any of the boys say they masturbated?

BRO:  Uhhh….yes!

ME:  What did you tell them?

BRO:  Ummmm….Well….To stop doing it.

Dear General Authorities

When you give Seventies, Stake Presidents and Mission Presidents the directive to be “specific and explicit,” horrific unintended consequences are the result.

“Specific and explicit” questioning of our children has become a rampant practice.  It is disgusting and dead wrong.  All done behind closed doors, all alone with our precious children.  STOP IT.

And then, to find out that you have tasked our teenage children to do the exact same thing.  SHAME ON YOU.

I invite you so sign the petition that has now been signed by 1,949 concerned human beings.  Click HERE for the petition link.

Other Resources

Petition:  Protect Our Children–Stop Mormon Masturbation Interviews.  Click HERE.

Why this petition matters.  Click HERE.

Testimonials of masturbation interviews.  Click HERE.

Testimonials of interviews about orgasm and sexual positions.  Click HERE.

How to talk to your kids about masturbation.  Click HERE.

Is masturbation a sin?  Click HERE.


Why This Petition Matters


Several folks have expressed that the church will not pay any attention to a petition.  That may be true.  Never-the-less, in and of itself, a petition can do a world of good.  In fact, it has already done a world of good for many adults and children.

Incidentally, I believe that my church will pay attention to this initiative.  They may not recognize it publicly.  But, it is already on my church’s radar.  Our public relations arm will be concerned.  It will be discussed by Seventies and maybe reach the level of the Twelve.  And, who knows, if enough people sign, changes just might be made.

In the meantime, the following wonderful benefits continue to accrue with each new signature.


  1. Standing up for our 12 year-old-self.  We were violated, shamed and damaged by intrusive interview practices.  As a child, we couldn’t stand up for ourselves.  As an adult, we can speak up for our childhood-self by signing and commenting on the petition.  This promotes self healing.  Has this happened?  Yes…PETITION SUCCESS!!!
  2. It is healing to witness someone speak out against the wrongs that were perpetrated on us.  Many of us have kept the shame and humiliation bottled up inside; some for years, some for decades.  It is therapeutic to see thousands openly state that these practices are unacceptable and wrong.  Has this happened?  Yes…PETITION SUCCESS!!!
  3. The wonderful Natasha Helfer Parker taught me this.  “Being able to share your story in a safe place is part of the healing process.”  Many short story narratives are retold in the comments section of this petition.  Yes…PETITION SUCCESS!!!
  4. Victims can see that they are not alone in having been asked and then experiencing the consequences named in the petition.  Yes…PETITION SUCCESS!!!


  1. Believe it or not, many members of the church have no idea what is happening to children behind the bishop’s closed door.  I didn’t until 7 months ago.  Has awareness been raised?  Yes!  PETITION SUCCESS!!!
  2. Awareness has been raised to the fact that parents have options.  For example, a parent can insist that they be present during their children’s interviews.  They can also insist that no sexual questions be raised.  Has this happened?  Yes!  PETITION SUCCESS!!!
  3. Parents can see that they are not alone in their concerns regarding our youth interview process.  PETITION SUCCESS!!!

Protection of Children

  1. Numerous parents have resolved never to allow these dangerous and shaming practices to be perpetrated on their children.  Yes & Yes again!!!  PETITION SUCCESS!!!  HOORAY!!!
  2. Validation that parents are not alone in taking action for their children’s welfare.  Right now there are 1,867 people who openly support these parents.   PETITION SUCCESS!!!

Local Leadership

  1. Bishops may be touched by the petition initiative.  They might cease the practice.  Or, seeing thousands of signatures may validate their current path of never asking children about masturbation.  Has this happened?  The numbers aren’t big.  But, it has happened.  Two sitting bishops have expressed appreciation for the petition initiative.  One sent me this message, “I appreciate what you’re trying to do with the harmful interview practices in the church.”   PETITION SUCCESS!!!

Church-wide Changes

  • The church could meet the demands of the petition.  No petition success yet But, we are only 1 1/2 weeks into the process.



Testimonials of masturbation interviews.  Click HERE.

Testimonials of interviews about orgasm and sexual positions.  Click HERE.

How to talk to your kids about masturbation.  Click HERE.

Is masturbation a sin?  Click HERE.

Is It Happening in My Stake?

imageThis afternoon, I sent this e-mail to my Stake President and Bishop.  Both are very good men.

Dear President ______ and Bishop __________,

Tonight, I’m having an interview regarding the petition initiative:  Protect The Children–Stop Mormon Masturbation Interviews.  

I have been saying that I believed these questions were no longer being asked in our stake.  However, I was just sent a copy of a memo from the Seventies.  It gives instructions that “worthiness interviews need to be specific and explicit.”

As a result, I’d like to ask the question again.  Are stake and ward leaders following this instruction to pose “specific and explicit” sexual questions to our children, anywhere in the age range from 11 to 17? 

Tons of people have reported that this is happening all over the church.  Tonight, I’d like to confirm in advance of the interview whether or not it is happening in our stake.

As always, thanks for all you do,

Sam Young

To all who read this:  Join 1,917 Others to Protect our Children


Other Resources

Testimonials of masturbation interviews.  Click HERE.

Testimonials of interviews about orgasm and sexual positions.  Click HERE.

How to talk to your kids about masturbation.  Click HERE.

Is masturbation a sin?  Click HERE.


Eighth Annual Mass Resignation Event

Image may contain: one or more people, people standing, tree, plant, sky, shoes, outdoor and nature

Today, November 5, 2017 is the anniversary of the infamous LDS Church policy regarding gay parents and their children.  I was asked to speak at this event.  Here are the words I shared.

A Lesson that Haunts Me

Einstein, a genius adult, said this:  “If I were to remain silent, I’d be guilty of complicity.”

Rulon, a mentally handicapped child taught me this:  “If I don’t dissent, I consent.”

In 1968, I entered my high school years.  I was proud to a Layton Lancer.   Like most kids, I was a bit intimidated.  Nervous and super excited.  Those high school years were very good years.

However, one HUGE regret has dogged me all the years since.   The path of action that I’ve chosen, has been molded by a long lingering shame from that one incident.

After 50 years, it still brings tears to my eyes.

It occurred during my 9th grade gym class…in the locker room.  My locker was located in the same row as Rulon’s.  At least, I’ll call him Rulon here.  There are very few individuals in this world who ALWAYS have a smile lighting up their face.  I don’t recall ever seeing Rulon without his amazing smile brightly beaming.

Rulon was “retarded.”

Today, that’s not a proper way to refer to the mentally disadvantaged.  That’s just the word we used back then.  All of his classes were special education, except for gym.  Kids will be kids.  Boys will be boys. And that means constant teasing.   Rulon was a convenient and frequent target.  A victim of pure innocence.  But, somehow his smile remained immutable.

Then, one day……Oh why did that day have to happen?  It happened, just a few lockers away.  Two of my friends were teasing, then taunting, then harassing the innocently smiling boy.  They threw him up against the locker wall. I can still hear the dull thudding clank of his body against the metal. My friends roughed him up.  The evergreen smile disappeared.  Confused and distraught, he couldn’t understand what he had done to deserve such a beating.  A beating…… friends……..among friends……..witnessed by friends.

As for me, and several others.  No…I’ll just focus on what I did.  I sat there and watched. Uncomfortable and frozen.  Repulsed, and passive.

When Rulon’s whipping was finished, he slumped.  Gazed at the floor.  Forlorn and smileless. I sat there.  Then I turned away.  Then I left.

I raised no objection.  I offered no dissent.  I stayed silent and watched.  An innocent happy soul was harmed.  After the damage was done, couldn’t I have apologized?  Couldn’t I have reached out with words of comfort and love?  I had four high school years to do it.  I didn’t.

My high school career came and went.  Once in a while, I would see Rulon in the halls. I don’t recall any conversations after that fateful day.  This pure and radiant boy was never the same.  That gym class had changed him.  Skittish.  Jumpy.  Confidence and trust in friends were tarnished and tattered.

Many times, I’ve thought of my locker room failure.  I’d like to personally tell him I’m sorry.  But that chance is long gone.  The boy with the ceaseless shining smile is no more.  He died young….decades ago.

Today, I realize that I was complicit with my silence. By not standing for my friend, I gave my consent. By not speaking for my friend, I offered my consent. By just staring at my friend, I granted my consent.

The meek and lowly Rulon was among the “least of these,” of whom Jesus taught us to be mindful.  Failing one of the least, has taught me a mighty lesson. If I don’t dissent…I’m giving my consent.

Today, Rulon, I WOULD stand up For you

Of course, I was a child back in 9th grade.

“When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.

I’m a man, fully grown.  No more will I consent with my silence.  That only gives harm its license.  Nope.  This time I’ll think & take action.  I will not live out my remaining years in disgrace.

DISSENT, my friend Rulon, I DISSENT.

And how do I dissent?  Let me recount the ways.

#1)  For 2 years, I met with my bishop and stake president many times for hours and hours. Not to discuss truth claims.  Rather, to explore how we could help those on the margins.  These are very good men. Ultimately, they decided to take no action.  It simply isn’t in their power to make any changes.

#2)  Nov 5, 2015, I was angered and hurt by a policy that was privately perpetrated on me and the entire church. I was done.  For the first time in 45 years, I went shopping for boxers.   My garments came off.  That night my poor wife was shattered and scared to death.  The specter of divorce raised its ugly head.  My wife and family are more important than my underwear or differences in belief.  I redonned my garments.  Stayed in the church.   And went about healing family relationships.

#3)  For the past couple of years, I’ve written my damn heart out: on my blog, on social media, and on my public Facebook page.  As a result of being open and honest, I’ve lost business and many friends.

#4)  For the last 1 ½ years, I have exercised my right and obligation to participate in the law of common consent. I voted opposed at every voting conference.  On the ward level, on the stake level, and during general conference.  In April of this year, I voted opposed in the Conference Center.  There were 3 of us who stood and shouted ‘OPPOSED.’   I DISSENT, my friend Rulon, I DISSENT.

I wish everyone in the church would express their disapproval through a vote of Common Consent.  Most members can’t do it for several valid reasons.  Those that do vote are mostly doing it with their feet.

Many of you have left the church.  Many will resign today.  I honor, respect and understand your path.  Actually, I can totally empathize.  I’ve experienced the gut-wrench, the excruciating pain and the soul crushing loneliness of a faith transition.  I consider you my friends no matter what your beliefs are.  When I talk to people, whether TBM, atheist, or anywhere in between, it turns out that our core beliefs are almost identical.

Now, #5.  I’d like to ask each of you to do something.   Sign a petition.  There is a dreadful practice in my church.  It’s widespread.  Yet not widely noticed.  It should be.

Men in authority are taking our children behind closed doors, all alone, often without the knowledge or permission of the parents and asking them explicit sexual questions.  “Do you masturbate?”  This, to children as young as 11 years old.

“Do you masturbate?”  This, all alone, behind closed doors.

This, happened to my children…without my knowledge….until 14 years after the fact.  That is outrageous.  I’m outraged.  Shouldn’t everybody be outraged?

Today, in Mormon churches all across the country, little girls and little boys, are being shamed in bishops offices.  Untold damage is being done to these kids.  The harm will last for years.  Sometimes for decades.  Some of our children will consider suicide.  Some will attempt it.  Some will succeed.


I will not sit in silent shame as our children are shamefully thrown up against a wall of lockers and pummeled with sexual questions.  All reasonable people know this is dead wrong.

So, there’s my request.  Dissent with me.  Whether a member or not, we have a vested interest in protecting all children.  Especially our own children.

Sign the petition.

I love you my friends.

To my lifelong regret, my friend Rulon, is no longer here to love.  For him, I Dissent!!!

Other Resources

Link to the Petition to stop Mormon Masturbation Interviews.  Click HERE.

Testimonials of masturbation interviews.  Click HERE.

Testimonials of interviews about orgasm and sexual positions.  Click HERE.

Is masturbation a sin?  Click HERE.

How to talk to your kids about masturbation.  Click HERE.

Calling Stake & Ward Leaders to Stop Masturbation Interviews

imageTonight, I send this e-mail to the stake presidency, the bishoprics and stake high councilmen in the Houston Texas South Stake.

Greetings All,

We have a great stake with wonderful leaders.  Thanks for all you do.

This e-mail is about a practice that likely is not happening in our stake.  At least, I hope it’s not.  But, it appears to be a widespread practice in many other areas of the church.  I have grandkids that will soon be entering our youth programs.  I’d like to ask for your help to insure that this practice doesn’t continue.

A few months ago, I discovered something disturbing.  It happened to my daughter when she was 12 years old.  During a bishop’s youth interview she was asked about masturbation.   Even though she had no idea what it meant, she was embarrassed.  After the interview, she asked her friends.  They weren’t familiar with the term either.  She googled it.  Of course, up popped pornographic images and descriptions.   Effectively, my daughter was introduced to masturbation and pornography by the bishop.  I asked if this question was ever posed again during her YW years.  She responsonded:  “All the time!”

I was outraged.  I had no idea these questions were being asked.  My daughter’s innocence was violated.  My rights and responsibility to protect my child were abrogated and circumvented.

Since finding out about my daughter’s experience, I have become aware that this is still happening to children throughout the church.  Many members have reported the harm, the shame and the lasting damage they have endured from these questions. 

As a young man, I was never asked invasive sexual questions.  I served as a bishop for 5 years.  Never once did I ask any child or adult about masturbation.

Here’s what I’m asking.  I’ve created a petition to raise visibility for this issue.  Please lend your support by adding your signature.

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to me.

To see the petition—click HERE

All my very best wishes to your families and in your callings,

Sam Young

If You Haven’t Signed Yet…Please Help Protect Our LDS Children

Link to the Petition to stop Mormon Masturbation Interviews.  Click HERE.

Testimonials of masturbation interviews.  Click HERE.

Testimonials of interviews about orgasm and sexual positions.  Click HERE.

Is masturbation a sin?  Click HERE.

How to talk to your kids about masturbation.  Click HERE.