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Ever the victim, never the self-martyr?


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I'm a faithful member of the Church of Jesus Christ, just need a little feedback here...

Not sure how to describe this but here goes-

So I've noticed a trend among certain adults in my ward, like going to choir and then complaining about how the Bishop asked peope to join it but you had to exit since the music was too challenging, and just in general complaining when situations you put yourself in are challenging, or having so much pity for yourself and the situation you worked very hard to put yourself in that others have to compensate and do what your supposed to do in your calling - I can't help but ask myself: why did you put yourself in that situation? Like if the thorn in your side is asthma, you don't have to set your life's goal in running a marathon - but when you do, we should all applaud you, buy your book, hear your fireside, etc.and perhaps  do something similar in our own lives?

Not sure what the name for this is but curious as to if anyone else has seen this?

Further, it seems psychologically unhealthy to be encouraged to blame yourself or your own perspective for drawing boundaries and saying no when it's necessary, this being the opposite of what a self-martyr complex-holder would do.

“On ward and stake levels leadership changes are necessary and, often, too frequent for our convenience and comfort. Some of us are inclined to resent and resist personnel changes. “Why can’t they leave him in?” or “Why do they have to divide our ward?” Our vision may be limited. Seldom are changes made that do not bring needed progress to a person or a situation. How often in retrospect have we thought, “I didn’t understand why that change was made in the program or why that person was given such a calling, but now I can see that it was just what was needed for the time.  During transitional times, patience, love, and long-suffering are needed. A permanent part of our philosophy should be, “Never allow yourself to be offended by someone who is learning his job.”

“Change in our own church assignments may be even more disturbing. Often when we express a wish to never have that assignment, the bishop or stake president offers us the blessings of that self-same calling. At those times it is good to remember the words of Paul when he, troubled by many ailments, said, “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Philip. 4:13). https://www.lds.org/general-conference/1979/10/progress-through-change?lang=eng

 

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Martyrdom is what I have always called it.  Self-martyrdom is a good label, imo.

I haven't noticed an increase, but perhaps it feels 'normal' for it to occur to a certain extent because I grew up with a grandmother who often accompanied gifts with what it cost her in pain or inconvenience, where it at times got to the point that myself, siblings, and at least the cousins we shared this memory with would not really want the gift, but none of us had the guts to say that out loud.  Grandma was at times ignored when she should have got recognition when younger, so it was understandable she thought she needed to make extra efforts to be heard and valued.

Because of that background, I tend to see insecurity when I see self promoting, unnecessary martyrdom.

I do think longsuffering or enduring to the end unnecessarily may at times be promoted by how we are taught to participate in the Church.  When someone chooses to never say "no", but then complains or fails to followthrough on commitments, I don't think they have caught the vision of trusting God.

Edited by Calm
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I’m not sure exactly if I understand what your saying but here goes.

Many people have trouble setting boundaries and this includes church. They say ‘yes’ because they think it’s what they should do but then complain or don’t follow through. 

I used to try and be the perfect Mormon mom but that imploded. I am much better at setting boundaries for me and my family now. I don’t have to do everything I’m asked and my kids don’t have to attend everything or fulfill every ‘challenge’ even if it’s from the prophet. We don’t ‘ignore’ council but we take it, ponder it, and figure out how it best fits our family needs at that time. 

My current Bishop does this well even though at times he is unavailable because he has firm boundaries on time set aside for his family.

I’m still working on ‘grumbling’ at times. I just need to say ‘no’ when appropriate and not complain I was asked. 😉

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Oh, and ‘pet peeve’. If it requires guilt and pressure to get people to ward choir and it is unsupported in your ward, why have one?  Why cause so much angst for the choir director? We just have ‘insta’ choirs now. Anyone who’s wants to, gets up and sings the hymn. 

I love good ward choirs and some of my wards have had excellent choir directors and have had a lot of support. But, not this one. Super young, tons of toddlers, super transient. It just doesn’t work due to demographics.

Edited by bsjkki
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To be honest.  Honest with yourself, the bishop and to the Lord.  Learn to say no at those things that do not give joy.  Participate with those things that expand a talent and a challenge that you would love.  No greater asset to any community. 

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On 3/25/2019 at 9:58 AM, Jeanne said:

To be honest.  Honest with yourself, the bishop and to the Lord.  Learn to say no at those things that do not give joy.  Participate with those things that expand a talent and a challenge that you would love.  No greater asset to any community. 

Who gets to clean the toilets?

Are those folks assets to the community?

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If you can't set boundaries at church its likely that you don't set boundaries in your personal life and if you use guilt-ing to get folks to do stuff at church its likely that you do that with your family and kids as well - this all seems indicative of personality disorders under the dark triad or being raised by the personality disordered and being guilted and shamed into doing things or feeling inferior. NPDs especially are always seeking praise or being the center of attention - if you research emotional manipulation/manipulators I'm sure it will explain the attitudes and behaviours you are witnessing in your ward.

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FWIW I have never been in a ward where the choir wasn’t super cringy. OPINION. 

Ive both had and felt pressure to be in the choir. Most of the time I say no.  I can live with the guilt :) 

I gave myself permission to say no to requests long ago.  I say yes more than I say no because I believe in giving back- I’ve been given so much. 

My opinion is: if you never say “no”, you aren’t ever “really” saying “yes”. 

Edited by MustardSeed
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years ago in a ward I was called to be in the choir.  My bishop called me in, extended the calling and all.  Two weeks later I was kicked out of choir.  Imagine a rhinoceros' caboose singing a song.  That's about what I sing like.  The choir lady thought I was funnin' her for two weeks straight so she got angry and pointed me to the door.  I admit it's one of the great accomplishments of my church life.  

Fast forward about 15 years and it turned out my son had this same lady as a singing teacher in 7th or 8th grade.  I was worried for him.  Then they had some night performance and to my surprise about half way into the performance the crowd of kids on stage formed around one solo artist and this young man broke out a free-style dance routine that got all the girls and ladies in the crowd cheering and the rest of us chuckling.  That soloist, to my surprise, was my boy, and it was our highlight of the evening.  He took after me in being capable of carrying a tune so it appears this lady lightened up a bit over the years and learned to use a weak choir member to her advantage.  

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20 minutes ago, stemelbow said:

years ago in a ward I was called to be in the choir.  My bishop called me in, extended the calling and all.  Two weeks later I was kicked out of choir.  Imagine a rhinoceros' caboose singing a song.  That's about what I sing like.  The choir lady thought I was funnin' her for two weeks straight so she got angry and pointed me to the door.  I admit it's one of the great accomplishments of my church life.  

Fast forward about 15 years and it turned out my son had this same lady as a singing teacher in 7th or 8th grade.  I was worried for him.  Then they had some night performance and to my surprise about half way into the performance the crowd of kids on stage formed around one solo artist and this young man broke out a free-style dance routine that got all the girls and ladies in the crowd cheering and the rest of us chuckling.  That soloist, to my surprise, was my boy, and it was our highlight of the evening.  He took after me in being capable of carrying a tune so it appears this lady lightened up a bit over the years and learned to use a weak choir member to her advantage.  

This is a great story Stem!!

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7 hours ago, mfbukowski said:

Who gets to clean the toilets?

Are those folks assets to the community?

Of course they are.  My grandparents were paid a little stipend in the days gone by to maintain the church/grounds.  It was a service that went both ways.

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10 hours ago, MustardSeed said:

FWIW I have never been in a ward where the choir wasn’t super cringy. OPINION. 

Ive both had and felt pressure to be in the choir. Most of the time I say no.  I can live with the guilt :) 

I gave myself permission to say no to requests long ago.  I say yes more than I say no because I believe in giving back- I’ve been given so much. 

My opinion is: if you never say “no”, you aren’t ever “really” saying “yes”. 

I have been in several with professional music teachers as choir leaders and it showed (they did their own arrangements adapting to strengths and weaknesses of the choirs).  One went on a mission to direct the Nauvoo Pageant , at least the music part.  It is a real blessing I wish more members could share.

Edited by Calm
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5 hours ago, Calm said:

I have been in several with professional music teachers as choir leaders and it showed (they did their own arrangements adapting to strengths and weaknesses of the choirs).  One went on a mission to direct the Nauvoo Pageant , at least the music part.  It is a real blessing I wish more members could share.

It's interesting how you and I tend to have exact opposite experiences on most things I share.  I wonder why?

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51 minutes ago, MustardSeed said:

It's interesting how you and I tend to have exact opposite experiences on most things I share.  I wonder why?

I am special and favored of God.  :wub:

I actually think it is probably because I have always lived close by universities.  Either that or just lucky.  Someone has to get the good wards.  I don't think university neighbourhoods would raise the percentage of high school teachers necessarily though.  We had three high school music teachers (and excellent ones) in my last ward, still have two of them as we were combined with part of another ward.

Edited by Calm
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