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The value of unorthodox parents

Posted: 11 Feb 2018, 23:42
by SilentDawning
I just want to share something. For years I was in the dog house a bit with a very orthodox daughter in the gospel. I was very proud of how she stuck out the church even when myself and my wife were not very committed, although we did go to church.

But there was this kind of testy divide on many issues that bothered me. I fell off the pedestal when she realized I wasn't a full tithe payer or didn't wear garments. Although she never outright said it, I could tell it was an issue with her at times. Due to the abrupt conversations about it.

Well, today, out of the blue, I received a touching, teary eyed phone call and apology about being so judgmental about my orientation toward the church from her. It was sincere, because she was feeling a lot of discomfort with the church now that, in my view, the grind had set in -- after marriage etcetera. She has a ward that is full of judgy people too.

Then there were requests for advice....

a) What to do about visiting teaching, which she doesn't like much, and with an uncommitted companion who never returns phone calls.

b) What to do about a calling that she doesn't like, doesn't do well, and really doesn't want to continue with.

c) how to handle the cultural things in the church that bother her -- like false doctrine being hurled around, and judgy statements that really bother her.

Right up my alley. I was able to give counsel. I felt like I was talking to someone on StayLDS at the time, although she is a full TR holder. I won't go into it, as you've probably heard it before, but she knows I'm here to share how I got to my state of peace in the church....

Re: The value of unorthodox parents

Posted: 12 Feb 2018, 06:09
by DarkJedi
I think your daughter is experiencing something most have faced at one time or another but many won't admit. These are the kinds of things they put on the proverbial shelf before other things also get put on that shelf. I struggle with all of those things myself. The real reward here (for you) is that she called you and opened up about it - there are so many young (and old) people who just can't do that with a parent or anyone else they trust and love. Great job Dad!

Re: The value of unorthodox parents

Posted: 12 Feb 2018, 06:14
by AmyJ
That is awesome that you were able to be there for your daughter :clap: :P :clap:

Thanks for reminding me to tell my parents "Thank You" one more time for their efforts in raising us kids.

Due to the mental foundation my father helped me with, and the emotional support of my mother - I survived the launching from the nest and was able to adapt to new thinking.

Re: The value of unorthodox parents

Posted: 12 Feb 2018, 07:52
by dande48
Thanks for sharing, SD. It was very comforting for me, to hear about your experience.

What most TBM don't understand, is the great courage it takes to be unorthodox/semi-active in the Church. Most members I think chalk it up to laziness, unfaithfulness, stupidity for being deceived... In some ways it would be a lot easier to carry on acting like everything is all cheery and giggles. Especially with a Church that claims to be "The one and only true Church on the face of the Earth, with authority from God", it's tough to be in a position where you need to say, "I agree with this, but not that." I'm glad it built you up into a position, both where your daughter could develop a good spiritual foundation, but also where she could know where to turn, when those foundations start to crumble.

It's like the parable of the man who built his house upon the rock. If you don't start with a solid foundation, it can be hard to keep your house standing. But the truth is, when the rains come, you need to at times fix up the paint, replace the windows, patch up the roof, remove the rotting beams... Sometimes, you might have to pack up and move. No house was meant to stand forever.

Re: The value of unorthodox parents

Posted: 12 Feb 2018, 10:06
by Roy
Thank you for sharing SD.

It comes naturally for young people to be passionate and idealistic.

Life has a way of tempering that.

Congratulations on having an open line of communication with your daughter. I only caution that you be careful not to give advice that may conflict with her husband. He may bristle if he feels that she is going to you for counsel behind his back.

Re: The value of unorthodox parents

Posted: 12 Feb 2018, 13:35
by Katzpur
dande48 wrote:
12 Feb 2018, 07:52
What most TBM don't understand, is the great courage it takes to be unorthodox/semi-active in the Church. Most members I think chalk it up to laziness, unfaithfulness, stupidity for being deceived... In some ways it would be a lot easier to carry on acting like everything is all cheery and giggles. Especially with a Church that claims to be "The one and only true Church on the face of the Earth, with authority from God", it's tough to be in a position where you need to say, "I agree with this, but not that." I'm glad it built you up into a position, both where your daughter could develop a good spiritual foundation, but also where she could know where to turn, when those foundations start to crumble.
Right on! I was raised by LDS parents in an active LDS household. I would definitely describe my father, though, as "unorthodox." He never, ever bad-mouthed the Church, and I appreciate the fact that he didn't. But, he taught me, both through word and example, that I didn't need to accept everything I ever heard taught in a church setting as being "true" or "inspired" or "of God." He was a professor of German, and he had a very good understanding of how the many languages in the world today developed. When I came home from Sunday School one day as a young teen and told him that I'd learned that prior to the building of the Tower of Babel, everyone in the world spoke the same language. But then, when God decided to punish the people who'd tried to build a tower to Heaven, one day they all woke up and nobody could understand each other any more. He just kind of laughed and rolled his eyes and told me about the various families of languages and how they came to exist. After that, I realized that it was entirely possible to be unorthodox but still be a good person and be totally okay in God's eyes. That was just one of many examples I could give. My dad and I weren't especially close, primarily because he had a very pronounced hearing loss and it was difficult for him to sit down and have a conversation with me, but partly because my mom and I were so exceptionally close that I didn't feel that I needed to be as close to him. Now that they're both gone, I have come to realize and really appreciate my dad's unorthodox perspective. I can see him in me so strongly and when I start feeling guilty for being unorthodox myself, I just remind myself that I come by it honestly, and that it doesn't make me a bad person.

Re: The value of unorthodox parents

Posted: 14 Feb 2018, 20:31
by Curt Sunshine
My parents were generally orthodox, but my dad wasn't afraid to express a different opinion in church - and they supported me and my unorthodox views.

It was one of the greatest blessings of my childhood and adolescence.

Re: The value of unorthodox parents

Posted: 15 Feb 2018, 12:38
by Roy
Early on in my FC, DW had several conversations about not "confusing" the children.

I do not think that telling the kids that we know the secret answers to life, the universe, and everything is a very good antidote to confusion.

OTOH, I think it is important to have a stable and respectful message that can serve as a safe place for the child to evaluate, process, and develop their own personal beliefs.