A Tale of Two Talkerias

TaleofTwoCities

The best of times and the worst of times.

Recently, two Talkerias were held on consecutive nights.  The people who attended were amazing.  Good-hearted.  Smart.  Thoughtful.  Many shed tears as they recounted their narratives.  Some for the very first time.

Two stories came out of them that I’m going to share.  One terrifying.  One terrific.

A Terrifying Tale

One of this weekend’s attendees shared this heart rending story.

Recently, she had accompanied a close friend to pick up her son at the airport.  He had been sent home early from his full-time mission.  Why?  Multiple…suicide…attempts.  The last one was nearly fatal.

Why was this young Elder so distraught?  Masturbation.  He was not able to eradicate it.  Heaps of shame and guilt had brought him to the brink of death.

How tragic.  How long will it take for this kid to overcome the shame that was totally unnecessary?  This natural and normal practice was not the sin.  The sin rests squarely on the hands of the shaming church.

A Terrific Tale

At the end of the next meeting, one of the men said, “Sam, thanks for helping me and my son with Bippity-Bop.”  I asked him to explain.  Later that night, this response showed up.

Growing up, I was a pretty good kid.  I did not curse, I was ‘chaste.’  I was an Eagle Scout.  I genuinely looked for ways to give service.  I was also kind.  I have always had a soft spot in my heart for the under dog.  I have literally never broken the word of wisdom.  I am not saying this to brag.  For this to make sense, I think you need to know who I was.  I mean I had perfect attendance at Seminary and served on the Stake Youth Executive Committee.

And…do you know what I thought of myself?  I was garbageI loathed myself through my teen years and my early adulthood.  I was right up there with the sons of perdition.  My bishop told me that if I could not get my filthy habit under control, I would be excluded from a mission.  And…that no woman would ever want me. 

Anyway, I resolved sometime back, that this would not happen to my sons.  In the last year, my 14yo came to me and was pretty upset.  His oldest bother had been caught in the act by his mother (my ex) and step father.  They threatened to take his bedroom door away and lots of other shamey stuff.  He is teased about it a lot.  The 14yo was upset about how his brother was being treated.  This allowed us to have a conversation about it.  I assured him that it was normal and healthy and what the ground rules were:  do it in private and clean up after yourself. 

I have doubted myself a lot since that conversation and wondered if I was leading my kid to hell.  Your posts gave the assurance and talked through the logic enough that I am glad for him and for the conversations we have been able to have.  Since then, we have had a conversation about this not being anyone else’s business.  If he needs to remind anyone of that, including the bishop, I will back him.

In a somewhat humorous twist, he is now hoping he gets asked so he can say, “Dude, what kind of a sicko talks to kids about that?”  However he handles it, I am on his side.  He won’t be getting any shame from this house.  The great thing about not shaming my kid is that we talk about all sorts of things, now that the door is open.  Thank you!

Dear Parents

Will you open the door to a potentially terrifying tale of shame for your child?

Or will you close the shaming door and protect your young ones from a damaged childhood?

It’s up to you.   It’s your call.  It’s your responsibility.

Other Resources

“Talk to Your Kids About Masturbation” …click HERE

“Bippity Bop, A Sin It’s Not” …click HERE

Suicide Vote

UtahAges12-21SuicideRatesPNG-1080x675

If I Don’t Dissent….I Consent

Well….I don’t consent.  No way am I going to dismiss the dreadful suicide rates documented by the CDC.  It’s a shame and a stain on my church.

The LGBT policies of the LDS church are, at best, purely temporary.  A modern apostle taught us this fact.  You can find his words detailed HERE.

These policies are not binding on the church until they are presented for a vote and sustained by the majority.  This is a restored principle of the restored church.  The prophet Joseph F. Smith testified before the U.S. Congress that this is the way the church functions.  His testimony is recorded HERE.

A Driving Force Behind Gay Suicides

I have a friend in Utah County who is an ardent advocate and protector of gay kids.  The Provo area can be particularly hard on LGBT as the density of the Mormon faith is so intense there.  He explained something I’d never heard before:

“Gay kids are taught that they have to endure this life in complete celibacy.  When they eventually die, they will be resurrected with the ‘normal and proper’ heterosexual feelings.  In the next world, they will be ‘fixed.’  But…in the meantime, they must endure the next 70 to 80 years with no expression of their gay inclinations.  No hand holding.  No hugging.  No dating.  No kissing.  No romance.  No romantic love.  No intimacy.  No marriage.  No hope for any of this.  The ideation then goes something like this.  ‘If I will be changed to a normal person after I die, why wait 80 years?  Why not end the suffering, the rejection, the hopelessness?  I’ve prayed to be changed.  It hasn’t worked.  But, I know how I can be changed.  I have to die.'”

It’s not the gay kids that need to change.  It’s the policies, teachings and attitudes of the institution that need to change.  They aren’t even real policies.  Only temporary!!!

Gay kids need sympathetic support.  Not suicidal support.  At April’s General Conference, I will exercise my right, privilege and responsibility to vote opposed.  If it saves one LBGT youth from suicide…the shunning & temple recommend loss that I endure, will all be well worth it.

Over 45 years ago, I witnessed the beating of a poor innocent mentally challenged kid.  Essentially, I consented to his beating by standing on the sidelines and uttering no protest.  I have deep, deep regrets, which are recoreded HERE.  I’m not going to make another dreadful blunder by standing on the sidelines as suicides soar.

To read a fuller analysis of Utah’s teen suicides and their link to the church’s LGBT policies, this is a great SITE.  The author put together the graph above from data provided by the CDC website.

322

Fortunately, I’m not alone.  There are now 322 of us living the law of common consent and voting opposed.

Join us.

You can start HERE.

Other Resources

  • Common Consent Scriptures & Doctrine, click HERE.
  • Common Consent Register—A Record of Those Who Disapprove, click, HERE.
  • Email notifications that can be sent to Bishops and Stake Presidents, click HERE.
  • Do We Love Jesus Enough?, click HERE.
  • The Only True Hope for The Only True Church, click HERE.
  • If I Don’t Dissent…I Consent, click HERE.