Friday, March 4, 2011

Women of God vs. Feminism

A while back I was curious about the LDS Church and feminism.  J Tolman over at LDS Women of God just posted a great & brief summary on the whole woman's movement in regards to the Church.  I quite enjoyed it!  She doesn't associate herself with the word feminism like some of us do, but I think that's all a matter of definition.  I think we really look at it the same way.

How Do I Change My Husband?

My sister-in-law, Sam, got How Do I Change My Husband by Merrilee Boyak for Christmas and let me borrow it when she was done. I'd forgotten I'd heard the talk, or much of it, at BYU's Education Week, so it wasn't too new to me.

The one thing I wanted to mention, though -- somewhat related to the last post -- was that Merrilee shared how she used to always try and change her husband to be more like her, then someone pointed out that because of their opposite natures, skills, talents, and qualities, they have all they need for salvation between the two of them (with of course Jesus Christ).  OK, that's probably not exactly how she said it (it's been a few months).

Isn't it true that if you look at you and your spouse you really balance each other out both in temporal ways as well as spiritual?  I suppose that's why they say opposites attract!

It's things like this that make me want to be a better wife!

I recently read a post over at Mormon Momma regarding some potential favoritism toward women and rejection of men and their roles and needs.  Some of the discussion I quite agreed with, others of it I don't totally agree with, but I can understand why people feel the way they do.  No need to go into it, you can read it and decide where you fit in.  However, one commenter, Lisa, made some profound statements about women doing their part that I wanted to post:

In the past I have had membership on large LDS women only message boards. While dozens of the members would complain about their husbands (or ex-husbands) joining recreational sporting leagues, gaming during off-work hours or taking too much time away in fulfilling their priesthood directed church duties like home teaching or presidency responsibilities, these women would spend many hours a day lurking on the internet chat forums, spending a great deal of money shopping for unnecessary, costly items and planning GNO’s where they would go and gossip about their husbands and tut-tut over their man’s inadequacies.

If many a woman doesn’t “feel” like providing a meal to her family on any given day, she feels entitled to shirking her duty to family in a pseudo-liberation rant of “I don’t have to do anything I don’t feel like!” and is applauded by her friends on Facebook or in gossip circles. If a man doesn’t “feel” like leading family prayer or in other family responsibilities, he’s labeled slothful and belittled. If a woman doesn’t want to clean her home and would rather craft the day away, more often than not- a man would be vilified for spending his day on a hobby when his wife expects him to tick off items on her Honey-Do list. I would think that both partners would deserve the reprimand for bad behaviors.

It’s a clear double standard that is even applied to physical affection. More often than not, a woman shouldn’t “have” to share intimacy if she doesn’t feel like it and can be quite rude about it but if a man refuses when approached by his wife, he is accused of sending the message that she is undesirable and unloveable and a beast for being “mean”. I’ve seen the complaint so. many. times. from woman who do not see the unfairness of the situation they put their men in.

I worry about the Pavlov’s dog analogy and if the society that is trying to uplift women is not in fact suppressing manhood and men, for men who enable bad behavior on the part of women are doing themselves and society no favors. I am doing my best to teach my daughters that women are to be held as accountable as men and to see equal respect for doing their duties- not elevated praise and adoration while casting the efforts of men by the wayside. I sincerely hope that there are mothers raising sons to see fairness and hard work as a mutual yoke in marriage. And I hope my girls can find those boys in the dating pool someday.

Fleeting Childhood

(Editor Emily's note:  I asked my friend Heather if I could link to this post on her blog or just re-post it.  I like the visual, so I'm just re-posting the whole thing.  I'd love for Heather to post on this blog, but she's a little busy with 4 girls, a big calling, and serious family issues going on -- so I'm doing it for her!)

by Heather -- 24 Feb 2011

Today I was given a great reminder about how quickly time passes. For the last few weeks my mind has been bent toward my little sister & her baby. Haylee's baby has a brain cyst & has had to have one surgery already and is back at the hospital scheduled for another.

Well, this morning, I was getting Rachel some strawberry milk when the phone rang. My mom was calling to give me the update from Haylee and when I came back from the phone call to see how Rachel was enjoying her milk this was the scene in the kitchen.
It was such a visual reminder to me to enjoy the moment and be there for my kids. I love being around when my kids have flavored milk because they enjoy it so much and it is a sure way for me to get a compliment on being the "best mom ever!"

So, seeing the empty cup when I came back just reminded me how important it is to be there to enjoy my kids & to be there with them whenever I can.