February 27, 2015

Generic "Men," Adam Rules, and More

"Praying Woman" by Petr Kratochvil
I've read some blogs where women question the roles within the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and other religions. Others are just trying to figure out where they fit. We do know women are equal in the eyes of God, just as men. One is not above the other. There are many aspects I do not understand regarding women's roles. I found some answers in this talk by Gordon B. Hinckley. Even he admitted he doesn't know all the answers.

Why do scriptures usually use "men" instead of "men and women"?

I do understand why the scriptures usually refer to "men" and not "men and women." Men, mankind, etc., are often generic terms for humankind, male and female. You can usually tell by context whether "men" refers to male and female. The terms took on a narrower meaning of only males over time. When you read more current scripture, like the Doctrine and Covenants, and Conference talks "male and female" are both mentioned instead of a generic "mankind."

So you know, I disagree with anyone berating another for saying "men" when that person meant "men and women." We can gently tell someone about inclusive language, or just understand what they meant and not the literal words. After all, language is imperfect.

In Genesis 3:16, God said to Eve "[Adam] shall rule over thee." Why should the husband rule over the wife?

Pres. Hinckley says he doesn't know why God said this, but this does not give men the excuse to abuse, belittle, or otherwise hurt women. I wish I understood this too. I try to reason what I can out in my mind. A man "rules" as Jesus Christ ruled--as a servant.

A woman's responsibility is to receive her own confirmation to anything her husband says or asks. A wife only follows her husband as he follows God's commandment. Otherwise, she follows God alone.

A husband and wife counsel as equals and follow the Spirit together. Sometimes, a wife helps the husband stay on the strait and narrow, and other times the husband helps the wife. Marriage is a mutual work.

What about Heavenly Mother?

Our knowledge about Heavenly Mother is veiled like a bride is veiled. We know she's there helping behind the scenes fulfilling the role as our mother. Eventually, we will know more about her. She will be unveiled at some point--most likely when God the Father is held sacred, so he knows she will be held sacred too (my opinion).

Some have tried to pray to Heavenly Mother, but Jesus instructed us to pray to Heavenly Father. Heavenly Mother is probably listening in on the prayers too.

Whatever the question, we need to seek answers with faith from the scriptures, prophets, righteous leaders, the Spirit, and God. Sometimes the answer may be to wait to find out.

Links that Gave Me Insight

As a Woman

Click on the picture to see it full size and you can read the poem.

February 26, 2015

Psychiatrists Vs. GPs

This link gives great reasons why someone with bipolar should go to a psychiatrist and not a GP. I made that mistake when I thought I only had depression. I took only an antidepressant, which made my hypomania worse. Later, my mission companion suggested I had bipolar and I went to a psychiatrist. He diagnosed me with bipolar after witnessing my psychobabble. (Such a nice label for me talking; I didn't like the label, but I got the right diagnosis.)


February 19, 2015

One "Bad" Thought Does Not Define Who You Are

"Thinking Woman" by George Hodan
Sometimes we have "bad" thoughts and we feel shame over them. That thought gets stuck in our minds as we obsess that we might act out on that terrible thought. We become debilitated in this obsessive thought pattern. We may act on this thought or not. (By the way, this may be a symptom of OCD.)

Note: some of these examples address my religious beliefs of chaste thoughts and same-sex attraction.  You may or may not agree with my beliefs. That said, I admire those who serve others whatever lifestyle they choose. I am also not confessing, just illustrating a universal struggle.

I felt like such a horrible person as a teenager because of unchaste thoughts and actions (nothing horrible). I denied forgiveness to myself because the thoughts just kept resurfacing. The excessive guilt debilitated me. I confessed to a bishopric councilor about my inappropriate thoughts and actions even though I had confessed and repented before. The councilor then explained that repentance is like getting a new car part. The dent from the sin is gone permanently through the Atonement. (No such thing as chewed up gum!) Jesus Christ made me a new person. Over time, I forgave myself.

In high school and college, I freaked out when I was attracted to other females. Suddenly, I felt nervous around my female friends. What happened if I held a friend's hand? Nothing. I realized it only meant friendship. Later, a college classmate mentioned that teenagers commonly feel attracted to the same sex. (Sadly, some commit suicide after such thoughts.) They fear, like I had feared, that the one thought defined them.

During a therapy session at college, the counselor compared thoughts to debris going down a river. It all washes downriver. This helped me visualize my "bad" thoughts going away. In addition, therapist Blaine Hickman writes about detaching anxiety from "bad" thoughts to prevent compulsions.

Days after delivering my first baby, I saw a knife and imagined stabbing myself or my baby. I had to hide knives from myself. It took time for me to let go of the fear of hurting myself or someone else. I still fear that I may hurt my children. I have to remind myself that it is only a fleeting thought. Even in emotional turmoil, I can remove myself from the situation and follow coping techniques.

I found more peace after attending Recovery International. The founder, Abraham Low, stated that a disturbing thought is like a thief in the night that goes away. The thief leaves.

A disturbing thought does not define who we are! We choose who we are through our mental focus and actions. Even if we act on the "bad" thought, we can change! We can change through the Atonement and feel peace again.

February 11, 2015

Link to "Why People with a Mental Illness Shouldn't Be Denied Guns"

I read this article and the author expresses my sentiments about gun control and mental illness. Mental illness does not equate with violent people!

Here's the link.

February 02, 2015

Inexpensive Entertainment and Curbing Addictions

Two more of my articles appeared on Mommy's Money Saving Tips. First, you can find some cheap or free entertainment and how you can save money by curbing addictions.

Inexpensive Entertainment

Curbing Addictions to Save Money

February 01, 2015

Brown Sisters Spiritual Journey

Here's a link to the Brown sisters on the Mormon Women Project. Their story shows how someone in a religious and abusive home can overcome a "religious" abusive parent and still keep faith.


The Foundation for Survivors of Abuse

This explains why victims of abuse take so long to come forward, if they ever do.