40 years ago or more, I was interviewed on several occasions by my stake president. He was a big tall man and a man of influence. He eventually became a regional representative.
I am torn between writing this and not.
I was a young teenager when my bishop started asking me if I touched myself. I was embarrassed because I did not know there was anything “wrong” with this. I was becoming a man. The bishop hinted he understood, implying he had masturbated in his youth. I was given a sheet of paper with suggestions, such as being in a bathtub full of worms. How very strange.
When the stake president questioned me, he asked in detail how, why and when I played with myself. He then wondered if I got excited looking at women in underwear in the Sears catalog or in newspaper flyers. I thought this was so weird.
I thought I must be doing something really bad, and likely no other kid in the church did it.
I went on my mission after being “clear” for a while, but I had to lie if I was ever going on a mission.
The pattern of guilt was established. While on my mission I even wrote to the stake president and he wrote me back congratulating me on seeking forgiveness.
Little did I know as a boy this was a natural practice of adolescents. Friends did it, I found out, and they were perfectly happy.
But it always bothered me that someone in authority made leering intrusions into my otherwise happy life.