Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Its A Womans World: Misconceptions about Women in The Mormon Culture.

There are so many preconceptions about the Mormon faith and culture. These assumptions can be way off. Lets look at a couple of Myths.

Myth #1 Woman are suppressed and have no say.

Many people look out the  traditional values of our church and presume that women are suppressed. Stay at home if you can afford it financially? Devote years of your life having babies and then the rest of your life caring for all the extended family that comes as a result? Dress modestly and feminine? In today's modern society all of this seems alien. What people don't understand about our religion is that although it can put some limits on us socially, the blessings are so much greater than any small inconvenience.

The husband is the head of the house hold. As wife we are his first counsel. As a Mormon woman I have the best of both worlds. My husband should consult with me before making any major decisions, but at the end of the day he has the final say. There are two things to consider when looking at this scenario.
1) any woman with a close and loving relationship with her husband know the influence she can have on him. We still have a voice and alot of the time we will help our husband reach the final decision
2) even though we can sway our husband, if it all goes wrong we are not held responsible. The husband is the one who made the decision and he is the one who will be responsible for fixing anything that results from a poor decision.

You see, I get to have a say, and I know that my husband will consider it seriously. He will pray on the problem at hand and then he will make the final decision. If it all falls apart he will stand up and protect his family. My religion protects womanhood and holds men to a very high standard of accountability.

#2 Priesthood is just a boys club that excludes women

Ok, so technically the priesthood meeting is a mans club as only men attend. What you don't realise is that the men aren't sitting in the priesthood meeting drinking beer, talking football and sharing stories about the "little woman" at home. Firstly they don't drink. Ever. I know, you're in shock right? Secondly, the priesthood is a sacred gift given to a man from our heavenly father. In order to hold it you must live your life within the standards of the church. This includes paying tithing, providing for your family, loving and respecting your wife, being a good father, attending church etc. You also are often required to take on a church calling where you do a service for the church with no pay (well no financial pay, there are many blessings that come with a calling.)
Women are not being discriminated by being excluded from the priesthood. These are the laws of heaven that we follow. Men are given the priesthood and the responsibilities that come with that. Included in that responsibility is caring for their family. As women we are not forgotten, we have The Relief Society where we can do church duties and we are given the extraordinary role of motherhood in place of the priesthood.

I came across this hilarious observation on the Official Guide To What Mormons Like. I will close this article by sharing it with you, I think it gives a very good first hand example of how wonderfully revered women are in the Mormon faith and how much responsibility the men face.

The Mothers Day/Fathers Day Double Standard

Mormons take gender roles very seriously (in case you didn't follow any of the news in California last year) and, as such, tend to make a big deal out of Mother's Day and Father's Day. They'll even base entire church meetings around those days. However, their approach to the two holidays couldn't be any more different.

Mother's Day will usually be celebrated with teary-eyed church members gushing about how important mothers are, and how much they love their own mothers. Stripling warriors and their mothers will be invoked repeatedly. Sentimental poems will be read and church leaders will be quoted about how awesome every mom always is. Flowers might be presented to all the women at church. Maybe even candy.

On Father's Day, men at church will be told to do a better job. They'll be lectured about how important their job is, and how awful everything is because they're slackers. Priesthood meeting will be especially awful. Luckily, most men will assume that the sermons are meant for those other guys, not him, and will blissfully look forward to a steak dinner when he gets home.