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As usual, when I am faced with a dilemma that involves my faith - I turn to the collective help and wisdom of this group. 🙂. This is such a time again, but I am not posting in the general board because I want to specifically get the opinion of those who identify as believing members for this particular issue.
When I picked up my 16 YO daughter from her birth mother's house today (I am the custodial parent), she excitedly told me that she went to see her mother's 'therapist' over the weekend. I asked her how she liked it, and she said she loved it. I asked for more detail, and she was quick to point out that this therapist was a member of the church - then proceeded to tell me that she channeled or communicated with ancestors and spirits in her therapy - and that specifically, she addressed "the unborn spirit of your (my daughters) future second child." I immediately was uncomfortable, and said told my daughter that I did not know how I felt about that. She immediately said in a slightly annoyed tone, "I figured you would feel that way, and so I wasn't going to tell you." The spirit immediately prompted me to back off and let her talk, so I told her that I was doing my best not to rush to judgment and I wanted to hear more and know about what she liked about it - so she kept sharing. I ended with telling her that while I was reserving judgement, I was glad the experience made her feel like she was able to release some emotional trauma and feel lighter.
Of course, inside, I am still very concerned and frustrated - My research since (I haven't been able to sleep, as I type this at 6 am) has shown that this therapist is not licensed at all, but is a "Spiritual Healer". She talked to my daughter about God, ancestors, ancestral trauma (literally saying that some of my daughters issues come from as far as 14 generations ago), the pre-existance (and some trauma coming from there) etc. I am trying to keep an open mind, but as an active member, this is hard for me to swallow. In talking to a FB friend who knows this therapist, apparently she (the therapist) is a return missionary and seems to be LDS, at least from what I can ascertain. So here is my litany of questions for which I seek your valued opinions: 🙂
1. What do you think of people who use this kind of approach in treatment? How can/does someone square this approach with gospel teaching? Do any of you believe in or practice such things, and are ok with it? I have always been taught communicating with spirits, other than on a very sacred level, was not kosher.
2. How would you advise I proceed with my daughter - should I not express my discomfort at all and let her continue to see this person?
3. Should I mention this to her mother as a concern - even though she weaponizes the church agains me with my kids and is always trying to convince them that I am just trying to control them by having them stay in the church (my ex wife left the church when she left me)? I don't want to give her something else to post to to say "see your dad doesn't care about you feeling good, just about being 'right' and staying LDS." Also, she never asked me or told me about taking our daughter to such a person - even if it was a legitimate licensed therapist, which she isn't, I feel I should have been at least informed as the custodial parent.
4. Should I contact the therapist? If so, what should I say?
5. Should I be upset and concerned, or am I overreacting?
Thats enough questions for now! 🙂. I know the firs thing to do (which I have done) is to pry for guidance from Heavenly Father. Part of the replies to my prayers has lead me hereon again for advice. I appreciate all of you and look forward to your thoughts!
Several nights ago I was in my bedroom brainstorming a dialogue on this forum. I forget the thread but ion so doing I recalled this story. Obviously I did not post this story on that thread and before I forget to do it once again, I decided to sit down and get this story posted here.
Tim Zaal is a former skinhead who in his teens always looked for a fight. You can say he coveted fighting. One night Zaal and 13 of his friends cornered a young gay male and severely beat him down. That person was Mathew Boger. Zaal nearly killed him.
Thinking they had just killed a kid, Zaal and his friends drove away. Zaal put all his past in the back of his mind and moved on in life haunted over the idea that he probably killed someone. Zaal began to give talks about his past and about the need for peace. As fate had it, Zaal was asked to speak at the museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles. There Taal began to talk to the operations manager and accompanying speaker to Taal. That person was Mathew Boger.
Ex-Skinhead And His Victim Form Unlikely Alliance
The two made amends and joined together to regularly talk about their past. I do not know if they are currently together but the fact that these two joined to tour and talk about peace is to me an amazing story of forgiveness. I see Borger as having shown extraordinary forgiveness to accept Taal as his co-partner in their quest to help bring peace. I also think Taal showed great courage to leave his violent skinhead past behind and move onwards.
Here's the news video I saw from which I learned of these two.
I hesitate, somewhat (though probably not enough), to do this. (Fools rush in ... ) Though names, locales, other identifying details, and surrounding circumstances have been changed for dramatic purposes, real-life, flesh-and-blood people are involved, and perhaps this cuts through the flesh to the muscle, and through the muscle to the bone. Some time ago, I wrote a piece of "faction" ... factual fiction ... about a relationship in which I was involved once, and about the metamorphosis of a young lady for whom I once cared a great deal. Though we're no longer as young as we once were, and though she long since has moved on, on some level, I care for her still. I've tried hard to move on, too, and I'm not really very big on "pining" for anyone. Hopefully no one gets the idea that that's what this is about. I'm posting this in General Discussions in hopes that it attracts broader attention and wider traffic before the Mods decide to move it to Social Hall.
Love and marriage figure somewhere in here, of course. It is a romance, after all. I'm not necessarily interested in focusing more than in passing on those topics. Hopefully, we can also avoid turning this into yet another thread about gay marriage. I'm more interested in exploring broader themes of repentance, of forgiveness, of change, of metamorphosis, of what it means to recognize our identity as Children of God with a divine heritage and potential, and so on. Anyway, without further ado, I give you the first chapter/installment of Deanna: A Story of Love and Change.
"You lift me and I'll lift thee and we'll ascend together." (Whittier's commentary after attending a Millerite camp meeting.)
"Do unto others..."
Q: Do you know/love someone who regularly struggles with debilitating mental/emotional challenges, but where you aren't (yet) equipped to help them (or yourself) heal and move forward?
Had a lengthy discussion with someone tonight, on the topic of mental/emotional health and similar struggles that impede relationships, bringing to mind Elder Holland's talk "Like a Broken Vessel", and his book "Broken Things to Mend." The discussion is also an outgrowth of a troubling/snowballing concern mentioned from the pulpit earlier this year by a pastor/friend.
Reminds me of the elderly couple in the ward/branch that my missionary companion and I rented a room from in Denmark. Decades before that, during World War 2, the husband had served in the resistance in his occupied country against the Nazis, and was captured. He suffered the rest of his life from what they did to him. (Most may be aware of the heroic role Danes played in running an underground railroad to smuggle Jews safely to Nazi-free Sweden.) As I recall, she had been a nurse, and as she explained, when they eventually married, she carefully tended to his pains every night, to help him sleep with something approximating peace. An ailment largely physical, that likely also left wounds of another kind. The man was a national treasure and a serious spiritual giant (a former Jehovah's WItness, who genuinely knew/loved the scriptures.) She was that, and genuinely an angel.
The context of tonight's discussion that I'm slowly getting to, was about an effective form of pyschiatric therapy from a pioneering trailblazer/expert in her field of mental health, that took years for her (and those assisting her) to research, hone, and distill.
The following is largely a paraphrase of the person I spoke with tonight.
The therapy was specifically designed for extremely sensitive souls, for whom traditional therapy typically did more harm than good. It represented her life's ministry to those who are hurting the most, in a hell to *some* degree of their own making, and who regularly contemplate ending it all. So, the discussion quickly shifted gears to the matter of such therapy being largely inaccessible (both because of cost, and because very few therapists are trained in the direly-needed therapy). Her approach, DBT, has been making a difference for such people for years.
What was refreshing in her approach was that she reminded therapists that using any such imperfect approach, among/between imperfect people, that it was not an issue of *if* such a therapist was gonna make a mistake, but *when.* A frank dismissal of the otherwise-nobly-intentioned "do no harm" hubris. And her required approach of what therapists must do when making such unintentional mistakes is deeply impressive. (Constructive tangent perhaps for another day.)
So the discussion shifted back to its original intent. What if the therapy was more widely/easily accessible? What if lay people in any family or community could have access to at-your-fingertips training and tools that allowed them to minister to a friend or family member? It is said that the best/fastest way to learn/master something is to volunteer to teach it (something I know to often be true). What if people hurting could themselves opt to step forward and become such a healer? A volunteer, tagteam approach to ministry/healing.
Catholics and Shriners and Adventists (i.e. Millerites) are known for their healing work in raising up hospitals. What if some in the LDS community stepped forward into this largely-unattended breach...to minister to those hurting silently among us, and to those who might not even know or care what a Mormon is?
By Bernard Gui
We had a very interesting and sometimes animated discussion on what some call pornography addiction.
There is no question, however, that people who have loved ones in addiction...substance or behavioral....have a tough time of it.
Some call this "tough time" co-dependency. That is not a derogatory word, but simply a term to describe the chaos addiction creates in other peoples' lives.
There are some common behaviors described by co-dependency....Denial, covering up, isolation, anger, depression, enabling.
Discovering a loved one is addicted can be debilitating. Fear is the most common reaction....
Piggy-backing on the previous discussion in which a case was attempted to be made that somehow being faithful LDS makes one more susceptible to problems with pornography,
My questions are....
Do you think the above fears are exacerbated because of unique LDS beliefs? Are Mormons more likely to have co-dependency problems because of their religious beliefs?
Are there aspects of Mormon beliefs and practices that help alleviate the effects of co-dependency? Would you share your experiences?
I'm not interested in discussing whether or not co-dependency is a "recognized medical" issue.
I use the term simply as a convenience to describe the disruption caused by addiction in their loved ones' lives.