Monday, October 27, 2014

Trick-or-Treat vs. Trunk-or-Treat

Trick-or-Treat vs. Trunk-or-Treat

Picture from

Each Halloween parents are faced with a decision to have their children go trick-or-treating door-to-door or find a local trunk-or-treat event. Now in saying that I realize that some people will say that they do both. That's fine. But I am here to make an argument for good, old fashioned, door-to-door, trick-or-treating and against the new fad of trunk-or-treating.

First, trunk-or-treating is cheating. Plain and simple. Taking your kid to a parking lot and having them walk from car-to-car to load up their bags is cheating. They don't have to do any work to get all that candy. You might as well buy them a costco size bag of candy, dress them in their costumes to take pictures for instagram so all your friends can see how cute they are and then take them to a friend's house to play video games. Okay, maybe that's a little extreme... but it really is cheating.

Walking around the neighborhood for candy is good for many reasons. It's good exercise, especially if they are going to be eating a whole bag of candy. In a way, it portion controls the amount of candy they get. If your kid gets tired of walking around door-to-door for candy and wants to stop trick-or-treating, they will end up with less candy. If they want to keep going, keep walking and getting more exercise, they will end up with more candy. I realize that the kids aren't going to eat all the candy that night, but it might just give them a sense of working harder for greater gains. Trunk-or-treating, on the other hand, allows them to load up as much candy as they possibly can without putting forth much effort. 

It is good exercise for the parents as well. Walking with your children through the neighborhood will also get you out and about, so when you sneak some candy from your kids' bag you will at least have walked a few blocks first. This also allows you to make sure your young kids are staying safe while you are exercising together. It is well known that exercise releases endorphins, and if you are able to do this together as a family, it will strengthen family bonds. This is something that should be practiced often as a family and not just on Halloween, but Halloween is a great time to get started. 

Second, the safety issue. When I was a child there were urban legends going around about poisoned candy and razor blades and all manner of atrocious things, but none of these stories were true. Many parents like the security of the trunk-or-treat and feel it is safer than wandering through neighborhoods. It is true that if you attend a trunk-or-treat it is because you are likely already affiliated with the group who is hosting it. So therefore you are more likely to know and trust those who are attending. Many of them may be your neighbors if the trunk-or-treat is at a church or a school (as they often are). It may seem safe but I believe there are more hidden dangers by going to the trunk-or-treat than you may realize. 

Kids are smart little sponges of information both conscious and subconscious. They will realize why you are taking them trunk-or-treating whatever the reason may be. By taking them to the trunk-or-treat you are preventing them from not only meeting new people in the neighborhood that may not be associated with the trunk-or-treat group, but you are also preventing them from seeing people they already know in a different context. If you are taking your kids trunk-or-treating at a school or church, it is likely that you will be seeing the people there that you already see at school and/or church. I believe it is much safer for your children if they have a sense of where these neighbors live. Especially in an emergency situation you would want them to know which doors they can knock on and know that someone inside knows who they are and can help them.

And as for meeting strangers in the neighborhood, wouldn't it be better for everyone if there were fewer strangers in the neighborhood? Research shows that knowing your neighbors has many benefits, such as: diffusing conflicts, sense of belonging and shared identity, and good mental health. Another benefit to taking your kids door-to-door is that you have the opportunity to meet some neighbors, so you as well can know who to turn to if you find yourself in an emergency (even if the emergency is to borrow a cup of sugar). It also allows you to see how some of these neighborhood strangers interact with your children. The first step in protecting your child from stranger danger may be to narrow the 'stranger' field. And if more neighbors know your child by name, and that it is your child, they can help you look out for them and notice when a true stranger may be lurking around. 

If your kids are too old to have a parent tag along for trick-or-treating, make sure they go with a group of friends and know a few basic safety tips: don't go inside someone's house, stay on the porch for your candy and if they want you to come inside for it, leave. But the biggest danger to kids is being hit by a car. Kids are twice as likely to get hit by a car on Halloween than any other time. So tell them to look out for cars - and maybe attach some reflective strips to their costume if you can. 

But even with the danger of being hit by a car, going door-to-door is better for you and your children than going trunk-to-trunk. I hope everyone reading this has a fun and safe Halloween however you decide to celebrate it. 

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Running From Your Problems

'You Can't Run Away from Your Problems'

We've heard this saying, or some variation of it, throughout our entire lives. We are encouraged to face all of our challenges and to either solve them or accept them. Running away from our problems is looked at as weakness, but is running away really NEVER an option? 

I think society uses cliche sayings far too often. There is some good to them, but also some bad. And the consequences may far outweigh the benefits. But first I will focus on the good.

There is some truth to these sayings. Often our problems come from within. Many people create problems in their own lives and lack the introspection to realize it or the self efficacy to change. In these circumstances our problems really will follow us wherever we go. The longer we sit in denial of our own hand in our situations, our own role in our destiny, the bigger those problems may become. 

However, some people who lack self awareness may also lack the ability to even recognize that problems exist. They are in such denial of their problems that they minimize, rationalize, and justify the troubles surrounding them. They refuse to think there's anything wrong and may even seem to carry on happily. We see them pushing everyone around them away. Being close to someone, on a deep level, forces us to see our own faults. True friends may point our predicaments and shortcomings out to us, and the denier doesn't want to have to face these problems. Someone who won't allow themselves to be close to others has the kind problems that will follow that person around until they have a desire to see themselves more fully.

The opposite of the deniers are the martyrs. They are similar to the deniers in that they lack introspection, however, the martyrs tell a different story. They know their lives have problems; their coworkers are awful, their significant other is immature or clueless or rude, their friends are judgmental or untrustworthy, and their family is harsh and unforgiving.  They see themselves as victims of all those around them and of life in general. They feel that everyone treats them poorly and life is completely unfair. They wallow in their self pity and aim to drag you down with them. Constantly seeking validation that they are a good person who has been treated unfairly, they want your empathy. They want you to feel bad too. But what they aren't admitting to you, or themselves, is that they actually enjoy being victimized. In fact, they often aren't really a victim at all, they just want you to pay attention to them and feel bad for them. Once you catch on to their self-sabotaging ways you may try to make them see their reality, that they are the cause of their own problems. You are the aforementioned friend who points their shortcomings out to them because you want to help them. But the minute you do that you because just another friend who 'betrayed' them. The next thing you know, it's you they're sobbing about to their new friends. Martyrs also have the kinds of problems that will follow them around no matter how far they try to run.

But can you really NEVER run away from problems? Society tells us, and we tell ourselves that we have to take the bull by the horns and face problems head-on. But I think that sometimes the best solution is to give up and move on. It's not ALWAYS the solution, but we honestly would never tell someone in an abusive relationship to suck it up. We would tell them to get away. Sometimes the abuse is more subtle, so the true victims think they just need to try harder to make it work. They are told, or start to think, that they are the ones creating the problems and they need to try harder. It can be tremendously damaging for them to hear "you can't run away from your problems" from someone who doesn't truly understand the situation they are in. What this cliche is really saying is 1. your problems are your own fault, and 2. it's never going to get better, so deal with it.

If you have tried to face a problem directly and you are getting nowhere with it, it may be time to accept the situation and stop draining so much of your energy in trying to fix it. This is particularly good advice if the problem is involving someone else, and your solution to the problem is for that person to change. We cannot change others. Give up. Move on. This could mean letting go of a relationship that continues to have unresolvable issues, or you feel it has become abusive. If you suspect you might be in an abusive relationship but aren't sure, here's a couple of websites with more information on the warning signs and who to call if you need help getting out.

This doesn't just apply to romantic relationships. Relationships with friends and family can also be toxic, and if have come to a point where you get anxious thinking about spending time with the other person, or you always feel sour or drained after talking or being with them, these are signs that the relationship is not healthy. Sometimes it can be our jobs that make us feel this way. Nobody likes their job 100% of the time. Anything worth doing is going to be somewhat stressful and require effort. But if you dread going into work, avoid contact with bosses and coworkers, feel miserable while at work and after coming home from work, then perhaps a change is in order.

On a personal note, I worked in a very toxic environment for a number of years. I was young and it was one of my first "real" jobs. I had an overbearing boss who was manipulative and vindictive. She was a very black and white thinker, and I was anxious all the time that I would say or do something that would put me on her bad side. The entire company was dysfunctional and the whole situation put me under so much pressure that I became depressed. I couldn't sleep, I was tired all the time. I lost motivation to do other things in my life that I used to enjoy. I stuck it out for so long that I started to think that I was the problem. I started to believe that maybe I was the one who was difficult to work with, or that I was being too sensitive or lazy. It took me a long time to find a new job, and I was so afraid when I actually started getting interviews that it would be just as bad, if not worse, no matter where I went. I had reached a point of hopelessness.

Luckily for me I found a new job. A job that I love, with coworkers who are great to work with and a boss that doesn't manipulate me. It took me a while to trust my coworkers. I was very reluctant to share anything personal about myself when I first started because I was worried that they would use the information to take advantage of me, or judge me. Over time I have grown to trust my coworkers more and more. This experience has helped me to realize that sometimes you can run away from your problems, and sometimes you are saving your life in the process.

I want to stress that I am not encouraging anyone to jump ship at the first sign of trouble. All relationships go through rough patches and if you can make it through those tough times your relationships will often come out stronger and more meaningful. But if the problems have been going on for a long time, if the bad outweighs the good and there's no light at the end of the tunnel, take a deep breath and walk away.

The bottom line to is this: Problems you create for yourself will be with you wherever you go, problems created by other people can, however, can be escaped from. Find the courage to get yourself out of toxic situations, and don't let anyone tell you they're your fault.

Running away will probably not fix all of your problems, but if we don't change our habits and break our unhealthy cycles of behavior then we become stuck in those patterns. You may not know for certain if the problems you are facing are being caused by others or by yourself, but sometimes the only way to see your problems clearly is to change your context. Once you've stepped away, the problems caused by others will fade and the ones you are causing yourself will be impossible to ignore.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Candy Girl

Hi, my name is Kim, and I am a sugar addict. 

 I know this because I meet DSM 5 Criteria for Substance Use Disorder

Criteria for Substance Use Disorder
You only need to meet three of these criteria for a diagnosis.
I easily meet five of these criteria, and possibly more:

1.       Taking the substance in larger amounts or for longer than the you meant to
                      a. YES: Once I start eating sugar it’s hard to stop. I often have seconds after                                telling myself I can’t or wont
2.       Wanting to cut down or stop using the substance but not managing to
                     a. YES: I have been trying most of this year to stop eating sugar and always fail                           after a few days. This is the longest I have been able to manage so far this                             year (11 days)
3.       Spending a lot of time getting, using, or recovering from use of the substance
                     a. No: It’s not hard to obtain sugar
4.       Cravings and urges to use the substance
                     a. YES: I have definitely cravings for sugar
5.       Not managing to do what you should at work, home or school, because of substance use
                     a. NO: luckily sugar addiction does not render you incompetent at work or life (until                    all the related illnesses kick in, then you will start missing work and be unable
                         to accomplish things you used to be able to do).
6.       Continuing to use, even when it causes problems in relationships
                      a. NO: So far it really hasn’t caused me problems in relationships – but more on                        this later in the post*
7.       Giving up important social, occupational or recreational activities because of substance use
                      a. NO: Sugar is often a central part of these activities
8.       Using substances again and again, even when it puts the you in danger
                      a. NO: Eating sugar does not put one in immediate danger
9.       Continuing to use, even when the you know you have a physical or psychological problem that could have been caused or made worse by the substance
                     a. YES: Sugar is poison. I know this, yet I continue to eat it
10.   Needing more of the substance to get the effect you want (tolerance) 
                     a. NO: I do not feel I have to eat in excess in order to feel the benefits of sugar
11.   Development of withdrawal symptoms, which can be relieved by taking more of the substance.
                     a. YES: I have been off sugar for over a week now and have been experiencing                        mood swings, headaches and trouble sleeping. Crazy to think that sugar can                         cause this many withdrawal symptoms when you stop.

Some of you may not believe in the reality of sugar addiction but let me give a brief description of what happens when you eat something sweet. When you eat something sweet, your body releases chemicals that bind to sweet receptors in your brain to release a beta-endorphin and serotonin. The beta-endorphin is a natural pain killer (ever wonder why you crave chocolate when you have cramps, ladies?). It also produces a sense of wellbeing, increases self-esteem and settles anxiety. Serotonin makes you feel mellow, relaxed, hopeful and optimistic. Sounds wonderful huh? Well there’s a reason for it. Way back when our ancestors were wandering around hunting and gathering food, sugars were scarce in nature but offer a quick, efficient source of energy. When something sweet was available our body adapted to let us know how important it was, and how essential it was to our survival. If you need proof, just take a look at this study: Intense Sweetness Surpasses Cocaine Reward 

Now, when I talk about sugar, and being sugar-free, I am talking about processed sugary sweets. I am still allowing myself to eat sugar in its natural form through fruit. The fruit exception is because fruit contains fiber. The higher the sugar content in the fruit, the higher the fiber content. Sugar cane, in its natural form is basically a stick. It would take you all day to gnaw on it for about 10 grams of sugar. The fiber helps you to slow the absorption of the sugar into your blood and avoid blood sugar spikes. This is the kind of sugar that our bodies have adapted to, so if we eat it the way it is intended it should not have the harmful effects that sweets do.

This is not the first time I have gone off sugar. I usually give up sugar for lent. Even though I am not Catholic, it gives it a little extra meaning. Plus, when you tell people you've given up sugar for lent they are less likely to try and convince you that it's okay to have a little bit of dessert, or one piece of cake wont hurt you. Other people can become strange when you tell them you are quitting sweets. Often they tell me that I don't need to because I am thin (as if quitting sugar meant I have an eating disorder). Some will declare that they would never do that to themselves because it would be too hard. It is hard. And I think these typical reactions indicate that the thought of giving up sugar makes people uncomfortable. Further proof that there is a real sugar addiction problem in our society. The first time it occurred to me that I might have a problem with sugar is when my husband (then boyfriend) told me that he was going to quit sugar for a while. I was shocked. I was the person thinking "why? why would anyone do that?" It made me angry that he was doing this. Partly because he COULD quit sugar, and partly because it made me feel guilty for eating it. My reaction was similar to how I believe an alcoholic would react if one of their friends said they were going to go sober for a while. *This is why I say that sugar hasn't caused me any real problems in my relationships the way that other substances disorders do, but it definitely did put some strain on me when Eric quit sugar. But it also gave me the idea to do the same for the first time. 

The problem with avoiding processed sugar is that it is in everything! Bread, peanut butter, condiments, pasta sauce, etc… EVERYWHERE. So I admittedly have not been super strict with my diet when it comes to these things. For these first 11 days I have been avoiding candy and sweets. I am now to the point where I am going to start checking the labels of my food a little more carefully for added sugars.

Also, watch out for something labeled “lightly sweetened.” There is no FDA regulation for what “lightly sweetened” means. Starbucks has started selling bottled iced coffee drinks in stores. It looks innocent enough. The front says “Coffee + Milk” “2% Milk”  “Lightly Sweetened.” That sounds nice. Like a basic iced coffee I might order at their cafĂ©, and add a little milk and sugar of my own. But if you look at the back, it packs a whopping 21 grams of sugar in the 12oz bottle. TWENTY ONE GRAMS. That’s roughly SEVEN packets of sugar if you were to add it yourself. Who in their right mind would consider that “lightly sweetened”??

Some of you may have already made the switch to artificial sweeteners when it  comes to your beverages. I don’t want to get too deep into the artificial sweetener topic. I have been using artificial sweeteners to help stave off my sugar cravings. But we actually don’t know a lot about artificial sweeteners. To get approval from the FDA, they test the pharmacokinetics (what our body does to it) of the artificial sweeteners – which tell us how it is absorbed into the body, distributed and excreted. Basically we know they aren’t poison and do not have any immediate ill-effects on our body while they are in our system. What we don’t know about artificial sweeteners is the pharmacodynamics – or what they do to our body. We do not know the longer term effects or what reward systems in our brain they might be triggering. The FDA isn’t requiring these studies to get these products approved, so the companies who make these products are certainly not going to conduct these studies and potentially uncover some negative aspects of their product. It is very difficult to get independent funding to do this kind of research, but researchers at Washington University School of Medicine have found that artificial sweeteners do produce an insulin response in your body. There is still more to be discovered as to what this means, and how/why it is occurring (Huffington Post Article). But harmless or harmful, for me the bottom line is this: Using artificial sweeteners only perpetuates an addiction to ‘sweetness’ and that is why my next step is to slowly wean myself off of these artificial sweeteners as well.

Quitting sugar is tough. Especially when someone has brought in homemade peanut butter cookies that are sitting in the break room, probably left over from the holiday weekend. I had been putting off quitting sugar because there always seemed to be a celebration coming up that was sure to have sweets involved, but I finally had to get serious about it and just quit. There will always be excuses to have sugar, there will always be justifications and rationalizations and minimizations. But all they really are is excuses. No more excuses. No. More. 

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Additional Thoughts on Ordain Women and Religion

Here I go again with the religious stuff....

Two days ago the LDS Church announced that Kate Kelly was excommunicated for her role in the Ordain Women movement. She is no longer a member in good standing and has to wait a year for a re-evaluation of her repentance. This means she must abandon her Ordain Women movement if she wants to be re-baptized in the church next year. 

Now that the verdict is in, I wanted to give an update and also share some additional thoughts on the situation and religion in general. 

There are many opinions flying around as to whether she deserved to be excommunicated and to whether this was a good or bad decision by the church. It's hard to know. Kate Kelly knew what she was doing. She knew that she was openly opposing the church's doctrine. It's hard to say if this qualifies completely as apostasy. I understand apostasy to mean denouncing the religion, which she has not done. But nonetheless, she is denouncing one of its doctrines (although Ally Isom, a church representative featured on RadioWest, which I linked in my last post, was very vague on whether a male-only priesthood is actual written LDS doctrine). 

Time will tell if this was a good or bad decision by the church. Some members agree with the decision while others do not. But Kate Kelly and other believers in the Ordain Women movement should not be discouraged. What Kate Kelly has started is no different than what happened leading up to the change in LDS doctrine allowing black men to obtain the priesthood. There were protests on Temple Square and leaders of those protests were excommunicated. But the movement did not bow, and eventually there was a change. There's more info here, but also a quick Google search brings up many sources of information about protests leading up to the 1978 revelation that blacks could receive the priesthood.

One difference between the black movement and the Ordain Women movement is that BYU was targeted by other athletic departments. When BYU traveled for athletic matches, it was met with protesters who decried the racist sentiments of the LDS church. Universities were pressured to cut their ties with BYU. This not only gained a lot of national press, it threatened the financial state of BYU.

It would be a bigger struggle for Ordain Women to have a similar effect with women’s athletic protests since women’s sports do not gain the same attention or bring in the same amounts of money as men’s sports do.

I am under the (somewhat sarcastic) belief that women will someday obtain the priesthood, but not until they have a black man as prophet of the church. And if a woman someday becomes prophet, then gay marriages will be allowed. I hope, though, that it does not take that long for the LDS church to treat all its members equally. 

But this specific issue aside, I wanted to go back to my third conclusion in a previous post. I somewhat quickly skimmed over the issues of personal revelation within the LDS church and wanted to explain my question about it further. The church teaches that each person can pray about issues and questions they have in their personal life and that God will answer those questions one way or another. The church also warns against receiving false answers that do not come from God. What I don’t understand is how a person is supposed to know the difference? Say, for instance, your husband gets a job offer in a different city. You and your husband are both equally open to the idea of moving but have some reservations about it. You both pray on it separately and he feels strongly that he should take the job while you feel strongly he should turn it down. How do you know which is God’s instruction and which isn’t? If you are both equally convinced that you have received inspiration from God, does this mean you are supposed to separate, with him leaving for the job and you staying behind? How do you interpret the messages and how do you know when your personal feelings are interfering?

I tend to believe that it is impossible for someone to completely separate their personal feelings from what they believe God is telling them. When I was younger (long before I met Eric) I was dating someone that I thought was ‘the one.’ I was young but that never seems to matter when you think you are in love. So I did what I was taught in church, to pray about whether I was supposed to marry him and when I did, I got a resounding YES. I was so excited, and comforted by this personal revelation. When he started to become distant from me I didn’t worry because I KNEW it was all going to work out in the end. I didn’t share with him that I had prayed about us, and I guess that should have been the first red flag. I thought it might make him nervous or scare him off, and it definitely would have. Eventually we did break up. It took me a long time to fully accept it because I was still hanging onto that message I received that he and I would be together forever.

Clearly young adolescents in love are bound to get mixed messages when they don’t have a good grasp on their own emotions quite yet. But can’t the same be true for old men who are so set in their ways that they cannot see past their own biases?

I understand that some (men) in the church are given a greater authority to receive revelation for others beyond themselves. These men are supposed to be so in-tune with God that their personal feeling do not mix with His messages. But recently we know this to not be true. The LDS church has come out against some of the teaching of Brigham Young that were blatantly racist and admitted that those were Young’s personal feelings and not a reflection of the church. A Mormon historian was quoted in the Salt Lake Tribune saying that God “works through imperfect instruments.” (Article here)

And this is where I have a problem with most all organized religions. Most of them believe that God is perfect and man is not. Christians believe that Jesus Christ was the only perfect man to walk the earth. Many non-Christian religions have their own prophets with similar attributes. Man cannot be perfect because God is perfect and no one can be as great as God. But religions are run by man, and man is inherently flawed. Therefore religions are inherently flawed. They are incapable of having a perfect knowledge of God, so there can be no such thing as a perfect religion. I think the anxieties and controlling nature that come from religions are due to a cognitive dissonance. They are in the same breath teaching that their beliefs are correct, they have God’s message and they are the only way to his salvation, and yet we all need salvation because we are not perfect and cannot return to God without being saved, and the only way to be saved is by other men who are also flawed. 

I believe some good comes from religious belief, but I also know that religions are full of guilt, pain, judgement, sorrow, fear, fundamentalism, exclusion, and hardship. I believe we can learn to be great, loving, kind, forgiving people without the need of religion. 

Friday, June 20, 2014

Ordain Women and the LDS Church

I didn't want my first post (other than the intro) to be about religion, but this is a hot topic around these parts right now. I have a lot to say about this and I fear that if I wait too long it will no longer be relevant.

Disclaimer: I was raised LDS in a non-traditional (for LDS culture) single-parent household. I was semi-active my entire life up until I got married in the LDS Temple. I did not have the 'faith building' experience in the temple that I anticipated and since then have not felt connected to the church and have not participated for 7 years. However, I live in Salt Lake City and so I am surrounded by the culture and it's very much a part of my life.

Ordain Women is a group of LDS church members who believe that women should be able to hold the priesthood and be more involved in decision making and authority roles that are present in the church. According to their website, Ordain Women is: "Mormon women seeking equality and ordination to the priesthood." For more information visit their website, it does a better job of explaining their mission:

The group started because one woman, Kate Kelly, felt inspired that the time is right that women should receive the priesthood. And the LDS church teaches that each person can receive personal revelation from God if they seek it. And Kate Kelly is now facing excommunication from the church for speaking out on this issue that she feels so inspired to defend.

After all, the LDS church started because a young boy, Joseph Smith, felt that something was missing from the churches he regularly attended. He prayed and received a revelation that the current churches weren't entirely true. From this experience he received more revelations and eventually established the LDS church. To read more about what the church teaches, you can go to their website:

After listening to Kate Kelly's earnest interview with our local radio host, Doug Fabrizio; and then the response the next day on the same radio station with a church representative, Ally Isom; I have come to a few of conclusions:
(you can listen to the two shows for free here:  &

1. The church is using local leaders as scapegoats to this issue. In the church's response to the excommunication letters, Ally Isom deflects responsibility from the centralized church leaders and puts all of the decision making to Kate Kelly's local leaders. I cannot believe that the church's centralized leaders do not care about this issue. If they didn't seek to control issues as prominent as this one, they would lose all control over their church. Taking the steps to remove Kate Kelly's status as a good-standing member of the church would serve to make a public example of what can happen when you speak out against policies and doctrine. I believe that the church would very much like to see members who raise such questions and gain such a following have their legitimacy as a church member questioned.

However, deflecting this to local leaders allows them to keep their image clean (or so they think) on this matter that is quite heated. It also allows them to pretend that the church leaders at the top are not threatened by this movement. Perhaps they want to appear to be nonchalant about it and uphold a position that they are so powerful that this group doesn't even register on their radar. But I am not buying it. I believe that the local leader, perhaps covertly, were encouraged by top leaders to take actions against Mrs. Kelly (and Mr. Dehlin, who is also being threatened with excommunication, but for different issues. I have not really been focusing on him in this post).

2. Excommunicating Kate Kelly only serves to prove a point that she is trying to make. Women are not represented in the church. They have no leadership responsibilities that allows them to take part in these types of discussions. Frankly, Kate Kelly's case for remaining a member of the LDS church or not will be heard exclusively by men. She will not have a woman involved in the decision making to decide if her actions have warranted excommunication. Imagine if there were no women judges or jury. Imagine that congress was only men. And imagine, in this day and age, if you were to hear a man (or a woman) arguing that this is the way it should be. Fine. If that is your opinion you are entitled to it. But then I am entitled to the opinion that you are a sexist, because believing that women should not have equal opportunities to men is sexist.

3. It also seems a bit hypocritical for a church whose keystone tenet is one of personal revelation. Either the church believes that one can receive personal revelation and should seek those things that are guidance from God, or the church doesn't. But not believing calls into question the church's origins and all of it's teachings. Kate Kelly is not telling women to leave the church. She is not calling any other doctrine into question. She appears to be a righteous member who happens to feel strongly about one thing.

I am not trying to make an argument for or against excommunicating Kate Kelly. I am simply looking at the situation from the outside and have some problems with the way in which the LDS church is handling questioning members. Sometimes I think the Community of Christ may be a better fit for some. I am not a member of the Community of Christ, but here is what I know about it. It was established by Joseph Smith Jr.'s wife Emma and their Joseph Smith III after Joseph Smith Jr. was killed. They have always allowed blacks to hold the priesthood and gave women the privilege back in the 1980s. Most recently they have been discussing allowing gay marriage. For more information on what they believe, visit their website:

Like I said, I am not a member of the Community of Christ and am not trying to convert people to them. But if you are unhappy in the LDS faith, there are plenty of options that can fill a spiritual void through other religions or belief systems. I think people should seek what bring them happiness and strive for authentic living.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Why Did I Start A Blog?

...I don't know. That's the short answer. I have tried to start a couple of other blogs in the past but they all failed. When I say they failed, it means I failed. My last blogs failed for one of two reasons 1) I was trying to blog about something specific and couldn't keep up with posting new material all the time 2) I wasn't being true to myself. I tried to start a blog as a way to share pictures and things with people that I didn't necessarily want browsing around my Facebook page. But I couldn't keep up with that either. It was dry and boring and I wasn't motivated to keep with it.

I am hoping this time is different. This time I am going to write about whatever the fuck is on my mind. This blog is going to be true to me, and therefore opinionated. I welcome you to have a differing opinion from mine. Feel free to post comments. I think it's healthy so long as it doesn't turn cruel. I may or may not respond to comments depending on how I feel. Actually I hope to even get comments.

I assume nobody will read this unless you are already my friend, but just in case you accidentally stumbled here and are still reading, here's a quick intro:

My name is Kimbu (Kim, actually, but I named my blog by my most common nickname so I thought I should be consistent). I also answer to Kim, Kimi, Kimberly, Kimbo, Kimbro, Kimba, Kim Jong get the idea. I am turning 30 this year, I have been married to my wonderful husband Eric for 7 years. We have three cats and a dog. We love in Salt Lake City and....zzzzz.... Are you still awake?

Okay, boring stuff out of the way. I think this will suffice as an intro blog to my blog. So, future posts should be a bit more interesting....I hope.

Thanks for reading!