I was born in 1950’s, growing up in Salt Lake Valley. In 1964 at the age of 13, the Bishop came to our Deacon’s Quorum meeting as a “Special Guest Teacher”. He gave a lecture about Masturbation. Several of the Boys, one in particular, spoke up and said what is that? I don’t know what you are talking about! As the Bishop continued the Lecture, this Boy, kept asking what is that? What are you talking about? Explain it. The Bishop continued with his scolding and lecturing about the Sin and Danger etc. about Masturbating. He also stated that 2 boys in the room would be asked later that day during their interview to be advanced to a Teacher, if they Masturbate. He eventually silenced the Boy who constantly asked and remarked “what is that?” by saying I will talk to your Father(1st Councilor in Bishopric) later and tell him he needs to explain it to you, so quit asking me! HE NEVER EXPLAINED IT IN ANY DETAILS AT ALL during his entire Lecture.
When I had my interview later that day to be advanced to a teacher, I was a very shy young boy and lied to the Bishop that I hadn’t done it. Because I couldn’t bear the Shame of not being approved to be advanced in the Aaronic Priesthood to Teacher. Feeling the Bishop would tell my Father, and He would WHIP ME with A Willow Switch or Worse, meaning years of mistrust and reminders of my “SINS” , and of course my Mother would be told, and maybe my Older Brothers would find out and Relentlessly Harass and Tease and Ridicule me and make up Horrific Nicknames to call me! Lets say at that point in my life I didn’t need SHAME AND GUILT HEAPED upon my MIND with ALL the other things I was dealing with then. 2 Years later, I confessed to the same Bishop, during my interview to become a PRIEST, that I had Lied to him previously, but I had since been able to stop masturbating. He was understanding and was remarkably considerate about it, BUT he did tell my Father, and later tell my FUTURE BISHOP at the time I was Interviewing for a Temple marriage. This Shocked and Angered me, I knew he told my DAD but my DAD never said a word about it. This affected my Dating and Marriage because of the Guilt and Shame. When I didn’t have any girlfriends or SHOW any signs of trying to do any Dating in High School, my DAD was very afraid for me?? My DAD had me go to the Church Stake Dances, but I never once danced with any girls, after all if I stole a girls Chastity, I would be better off DEAD!
I attended 4 years of SEMINARY, 9 thru 12th Grade. This was in the LATE 1960’s. Our Seminary teachers, Priesthood Leaders, Church LEADERS AT EVERY LEVEL, were VERY,VERY PROLIFIC and AGGRESSIVE about talking, LECTURING, literally HARASSING and RIDICULING, Teenagers of that TIME. About CHASTITY, THE MORAL CODE, VIRTUE, etc, etc,etc. AT EVERY PULPIT IN THE CHURCH, from General Conference Talks, Stake Conference talks, Ward Sacrament Meeting talks, Seminary Classes, Sunday School Classes, Priesthood meeting talks, and Classes. When I was 15, 1965, I went to a Saturday night STAKE PRIESTHOOD MEETING and we had a “SPECIAL” Guest Speaker, “A WOMAN AUTHOR ON A BOOK ABOUT THE LAW OF CHASTITY! I don’t recall a meeting in my Life with the subject covered that was more NASTY, FILTHY,VULGAR, RIDICULOUS, and HARASSING about the subject. One of the statements SHE made during the lecture went like this: “As far as MASTURBATION goes you BOYS are to KEEP YOUR HANDS OUTSIDE OF THE COVERS, at ALL times when you are in bed.” The WORDS, NECKING, PETTING, HEAVY KISSING, Inappropriate TOUCHING and HUGGING etc, were all referenced among many other things. It would be better to DIE than take away the CHASTITY of a girl you go on a date with! And SO on and ON! My father never said a word to me on our ride home and he NEVER talked about SEXUAL Subjects at any time in my life. The following Sunday in Ward Priesthood opening meeting, one of my fellow Teachers Quorum boys, stood up in front of ALL the BOYS and MEN in the meeting, and said “Bishop, I want to make a Formal Complaint about the LECTURE we got in STAKE PRIESTHOOD MEETING last week. The Lady who gave the lecture was ridiculous, I mean really, are we supposed to keep our HANDS OUTSIDE THE COVERS when we are in bed? That boy became my best Friend and HERO for speaking up. He got a Lecture from the Bishop later that he didn’t have the right to stand up and complain like that.
When I went to SEMINARY Graduation as a HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR, we already had our 3yr Seminary Pin, and were receiving our 4 Year PIN that had a small chain attaching it to our 3yr PIN. The Graduation was held in the STAKE CENTER Meeting house where our High School was located. The SPEAKER for the Graduation was the STAKE PRESIDENT of that STAKE. I had never seen the man before, but I will never forget him! In his Talk he said we should NOT wear our 4YR PIN, if we are GUILTY of any INFRACTIONS OF THE MORAL CODE, but we should confess to our Bishop, and have him KEEP OUR PIN, UNTIL we have repented to his satisfaction, then he can give us our PIN back to wear. How many GIRLS OR BOYS, went home that night proudly wearing their 4 yr PIN saying to themselves, OH NO, I’m not WORTHY to wear this PIN? “What the HXXX, didn’t I get this PIN FOR ATTENDING my 4TH year of Seminary?? He also gave us a PLAN FOR OUR LIVES, Boys, get a job for the next year until you go on your mission to help pay for your MISSION EXPENSES, then get married within 6 MONTHS of your return, and IMMEDIATELY start having CHILDREN. Girls, get a job, or go to College, but only to find a RETURNED MISSIONARY to get married to, and IMMEDIATELY have CHILDREN, do NOT keep WORKING or going to COLLEGE, your “PLACE IS IN THE HOME”!!!!!! WOW, what advice?
I’m trying to make a point here that it didn’t just stop at ONE on ONE Bishop Interviews in a CLOSED OFFICE with INAPPOPRIATE questions. It was SMEARED in our FACEs constantly at every Church Venue I went to as a TEENAGER.(and I was FORCED to ATTEND ALL OF THEM BY MY PARENTS)
If WE did anything wrong in the venue of CHASTITY AND VIRTUE, we were shamed and Condemned, and it takes years and maybe NEVER to get over it.
It affected my LIFE and MARRIAGE in so many NEGATIVE ways, my wife dealt with the same stuff, but we to this day cannot talk about it openly.
I mean getting married at a YOUNG age with all this to deal with. I mean, how is SEX so DIRTY, FILTHY one day and the NEXT day, you are MARRIED, and having a lot of SEX so you can get PREGNANT right away?
How can you just FLIP a SWITCH like that? You can’t!!! It needs to STOP, and NOW!