Friday, February 17, 2012

It's Not What You Get

So I am taking a Women's Literature class this semester, and I am really enjoying it. I like hearing all of the varied opinions that come up in our class--I have a hard time when people say things about BYU students being closed-minded lemmings because I totally disagree. There are lots of very liberal and interesting girls in my class, not just the stereotypes that people try to pin on BYU. I love this quote from Aristotle that says:

"The mark of an educated mind is to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it"

I definitely think that I can hear things that maybe go against what I believe without it like destroying my testimony or worldview or whatever. But something happened on Friday that kind of bothered me. There is a girl in that class that loves to talk about how much she hates Relief Society and how all the girls in her ward just care about getting married, and how we should use the church to enact social change. I thought the social change thing was interesting--maybe something that sounds potentially problematic to me, but I was willing to hear her out. But then she said "I hate Relief Society. I sit in the back with my ipad and it entertains me and I feel like it is a waste of time for us while the men are in priesthood."

Well DUH it is going to be a waste of time for you with an attitude like that! For one thing, newsflash, we learn the same things as the men. Ask your home teacher what they talked about last week--yep, the teachings of George Albert Smith, just like we did. And for another thing, if you feel like RS is not as enriching as you would like it to be, what are you doing to change that? Sit in the back? Mmmhmm, way to blame the organization of Relief Society for your lack of involvement. Did you read the lesson the week before and come prepared to contribute meaningful insights? (If she did, kudos to her...I always forget, admittedly). What about thinking about how you could make this meeting better for the other sisters in your ward? Hmm? I bet your ipad will be there after the third hour.

So I commented. Did she care? Probably not. But I just don't like people blaming the church for issues that they are doing nothing to improve. Other girls have complained that RS is lame because all their ward does for activities is fix hair (which I kind of highly doubt). Well then volunteer to organize an activity that is more meaningful to you! I am sure that your activities leader would be overjoyed for the help. 

And then someone mentioned that youtube has a whole Relief Society channel with interviews and question and answer sessions with Sister Beck! How cool is that? And so the teacher pulled it up and we watched this video and I felt a teensy bit vindicated because it was exactly what I was trying to say (and the girl next to me was even like "hey, that's what you were saying! I think my pride just cancelled out my good intentions with the previous comments though).

What about you all? What have your experiences with Relief Society been? You can disagree with me, and I promise I won't write a whole blog post about you :)


  1. Claire, I just have to say bravo! I would have been just as frustrated and probably would have had the same reaction as you. And in my experience when I don't like my ward/relief society situation it's definitely because I'm not making the effort, never the other way around.

  2. Bam! LOVE this video. And yes, if you feel bad about being proud of your comment, let me. I'm proud of you and what you said. I would have sat there thinking the same thing (and I'm sure many other people did as well). I also have good experiences in Relief Society-unless I sit in the back and feel sorry for myself that no one wants to sit by me. Which, is what happened for a few months in our ward. Now, I try to come ready to learn and participate and it has made a world of a difference. Now I'm trying to be the friend instead of wondering why no ones wants to sit by me. You're great. :) Happy I can read your blog. he he

    1. I totally felt the same way in our ward! In fact, I still do unless I try to focus outside of myself. Isn't that weird? (and aren't we friends?...) I think a lot of girls feel isolated in married wards for some reason! Why don't we all just leave our inhibitions behind and realize that everyone feels the same way?