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Church callings before family


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I'm new here, I'm not sure if this topic aligns with other topics here, because it's something about the church that I'm struggling with. I've been struggling with a few things, but this one is really eating at me today, so here I am. I'm in some LDS Facebook groups, but I didn't feel comfortable posting there. So hi! Teenage convert (13 years ago), married, 4 kids.

Okay.

Does anyone struggle with the church being so family-centered, and yet they ask one or both parents to leave their family duties to help with church activities/callings all the time? 
The whole four years my husband was in dental school, which is challenging enough for a young family, he was YM President. We went from 1-3 babies during the duration of his calling — that’s how long he was in it. And during that time he never missed an event. He was going to mutual every week and staying after for hours, doing Boy Scouts activities, camp outs once a month, sometimes week-long camp outs, going to church early, staying at church late, driving kids to church dances, chaperoning dances, dropping what he was doing to give someone a ride, the list goes on as many of you know. I look back on that time and think, wow. We were stretched so thin because of church during an already stressful time in our lives. And anytime I’d try to put my foot down and say, “No, not this time. I really need you helping me with the kids today.” He felt like he was letting everyone down by helping me, so he would choose the calling. It drove me nuts.
Fast forward to him now having a stake calling as YM secretary, and it’s youth conference this weekend. After already coming home late from work every day this week, and me having mental breakdowns and anxiety attacks (something new and scary for me to navigate. I recently had baby #4, and never felt like this before), he went straight from work to attend the conference yesterday and didn’t come home until after midnight, and was up this morning at 6 to go again and won’t be back until 6 tonight. He felt like he’d me letting them down if he helped me.
It’s just super hard for me to be literally crying out for help for years now, and our family comes second to church stuff.
Feelings of resentment are really stirring up, and I don’t want to feel that way towards the church. I know service is important. I know. But why is it so often prioritized over families?
Again, sorry if this is not in line with the purpose of this forum. 😳
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In every calling I’ve had in the Church I’ve always told everyone who serves with me to always feel free to tell me, I can’t make it today, I’m needed at home.  I firmly believe that God, and Church leadership, are on board with that invitation. 

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4 hours ago, IndyBelle said:

Does anyone struggle with the church being so family-centered, and yet they ask one or both parents to leave their family duties to help with church activities/callings all the time? 

I don’t struggle with saying “no, my family needs me at this time and this would prevent me from being there when needed”.  Something my mom and dad taught me,  I know others who have though.  I believe my personal revelation also trumps revelation from those who have stewardship over me, but I do believe we need to seriously consider callings if the individual is inspired to offer it and seek our own inspiration to avoid just staying in our comfort zone.  I would ask the one extending the calling if I am not sure if it is right to accept if the person was inspired to offer or it was more of a reasoned calling, as in “this seems like a good fit or opportunity for Sister R”.

Edited by Calm
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4 hours ago, IndyBelle said:

anxiety attacks

This is hard.  I have had them and panic attacks.  I don’t know if your husband would feel you were going behind his back, but what about seeking counsel from your bishop or stake president about it?  Are they likely to understand your needs?  Do you feel safe going to them about your difficulties?

There are articles in the Ensign about having to limit callings, including one or both parents because of what is going on in the home.  Would it be helpful to have those?

Edited by Calm
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6 hours ago, IndyBelle said:

I'm new here, I'm not sure if this topic aligns with other topics here, because it's something about the church that I'm struggling with. I've been struggling with a few things, but this one is really eating at me today, so here I am. I'm in some LDS Facebook groups, but I didn't feel comfortable posting there. So hi! Teenage convert (13 years ago), married, 4 kids.

Okay.

Does anyone struggle with the church being so family-centered, and yet they ask one or both parents to leave their family duties to help with church activities/callings all the time? 
The whole four years my husband was in dental school, which is challenging enough for a young family, he was YM President. We went from 1-3 babies during the duration of his calling — that’s how long he was in it. And during that time he never missed an event. He was going to mutual every week and staying after for hours, doing Boy Scouts activities, camp outs once a month, sometimes week-long camp outs, going to church early, staying at church late, driving kids to church dances, chaperoning dances, dropping what he was doing to give someone a ride, the list goes on as many of you know. I look back on that time and think, wow. We were stretched so thin because of church during an already stressful time in our lives. And anytime I’d try to put my foot down and say, “No, not this time. I really need you helping me with the kids today.” He felt like he was letting everyone down by helping me, so he would choose the calling. It drove me nuts.
Fast forward to him now having a stake calling as YM secretary, and it’s youth conference this weekend. After already coming home late from work every day this week, and me having mental breakdowns and anxiety attacks (something new and scary for me to navigate. I recently had baby #4, and never felt like this before), he went straight from work to attend the conference yesterday and didn’t come home until after midnight, and was up this morning at 6 to go again and won’t be back until 6 tonight. He felt like he’d me letting them down if he helped me.
It’s just super hard for me to be literally crying out for help for years now, and our family comes second to church stuff.
Feelings of resentment are really stirring up, and I don’t want to feel that way towards the church. I know service is important. I know. But why is it so often prioritized over families?
Again, sorry if this is not in line with the purpose of this forum. 😳

It’s perfectly fine to set boundaries for your family. You must be amazing people but just like the workforce, those with skills can be overburdened. It’s okay to bring up a change of circumstance that limits your ability to serve. Bishoprics and leaders are not mind readers so make sure you let everyone know you have hit your limits.

I have been there and looking back on things, I wish I had done a better job at setting these boundaries. 
 

My husband always was called to positions that required a lot of time when our children were young. I’ve seen some families set firm boundaries. One night a week and no more than one Saturday a month (as a Bishop.) I wish, looking back, I was better at this. 

My husband felt he had to fulfill his callings but there was a time he was on the high council, Stake Young Men’s President and the ward 11 year old scout leader all at the same time. 
 

One of my children was diagnosed as diabetes T 1 at this same time. I felt guilty telling the RS President I could not be a visiting teacher. I was still serving in the primary Presidency at this time. 
 

This is crazy thinking! Set boundaries for your family together. Let your leaders know you’re struggling. It’s okay to say you need him home more to help with the kids. This is not a ‘failing’ but setting healthy boundaries. Your kids will thank you for it later...trust me.

 

Edited by bsjkki
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42 minutes ago, Calm said:

This is hard.  I have had them and panic attacks.  I don’t know if your husband would feel you were going behind his back, but what about seeking counsel from your bishop or stake president about it?  Are they likely to understand your needs?  Do you feel safe going to them about your difficulties?

There are articles in the Ensign about having to limit callings, including one or both parents because of what is going on in the home.  Would it be helpful to have those?

I even thought, getting help from a professional might help. Four babies and a spouse who works long hours is very difficult. It’s hard reading this post because I remember those desperate feelings raising five kids with a spouse who worked a lot and served a lot. 

I think setting limits with a church calling is doable if your spouse can buy into the issue too but with high achievers, it’s hard for them to see they can’t ‘do it all’ everywhere else and neglect their spouse in the meantime. We have some people who really understand these issues. I hope they chime in. 
 

Looking back, I have regrets I didn’t do more to set boundaries at a younger age.

 

 

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6 minutes ago, bsjkki said:

Looking back, I have regrets I didn’t do more to set boundaries at a younger age.

My calling related regrets tended to be when I said yes. As in "Yes, I'll fraudulently sign blue cards."

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Well, I just discovered this is still a highly charged issue for me due to reactions I have had to my saying “no” (definitely don’t want to convey being able to say no suddenly makes the issues go away, not everyone understands or accepts when you say no...though thankfully a lot more than I expected do) and so I need to step away from it for tonight. Hopefully after I feel like my chest and throat aren’t aren’t all tight from my flashback to one incident and I feel like I am getting oxygen again,  I can contribute again. 
 

As a side note...I don’t know how your anxiety attacks manifest, but if at times you feel it is hard to breathe, it might be helpful to have an oximeter around to reassure you that you are getting enough oxygen and are not suffocating.  I have found it very reassuring in helping the anxiety/panic not increase.   They aren’t that expensive anymore:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B002M3CB3C?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIyN6LyrmT8QIVQObjBx36VwuvEAAYAyAAEgIXT_D_BwE
 

Blood pressure cuffs may be helpful as well, but I get a lot of error readings when trying to test and that adds to my anxiety plus the discomfort of the tightening may worsen my anxiety as well, so I don’t highly recommend that purchase. But they aren’t very expensive either if you think knowing more about how your body is physically acting would be reassuring to you personally. 

Edited by Calm
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8 minutes ago, Chum said:

My calling related regrets tended to be when I said yes. As in "Yes, I'll fraudulently sign blue cards."

What are blue cards?

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13 minutes ago, Chum said:

My calling related regrets tended to be when I said yes. As in "Yes, I'll fraudulently sign blue cards."

Yeah, that would be a regret. Sometimes, you had to trust boys and parents that they actually did what they said they did. My spouse never signed one knowing it was a lie but he knows people who did. 
 

Blue cards are merit badge requirement cards for scouts. 

Edited by bsjkki
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11 minutes ago, bsjkki said:

Yeah, that would be a regret. Sometimes, you had to trust boys and parents that they actually did what they said they did. My spouse never signed one knowing it was a lie but he knows people who did.

In the end I could count on one hand the number of adults who were interested in the integrity of the program. Well, on one hand if you blew off a couple of fingers.

One notable exchange was me and the exec sec about youth protection training. Like most here, he wanted no part of it. When I said it had been mandated by the district, he we'd lie and that'll handle it. I offered that if we did, I would personally make sure the district pulled our charter. He looked like I had gut punched him.

A few months later, the stake presidency mandated it and suddenly, YPT was divinely inspired.

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30 minutes ago, Calm said:

Blood pressure cuffs may be helpful as well, but I get a lot of error readings when trying to test and that adds to my anxiety plus the discomfort of the tightening may worsen my anxiety as well,

I've never been clear why blood pressure cuffs had to become implements of torture. For lots of decades they seemed to work just fine w/o seeming like something Vietnamese POW interrogators would find useful.

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Just now, Chum said:

I've never been clear why blood pressure cuffs had to become implements of torture. For lots of decades they seemed to work just fine w/o seeming like something Vietnamese POW interrogators would find useful.

So it is not my imagination that it is now more painful?  I thought I was just more sensitive to pain these days. But I don’t remember them being so tight or so wide as to cut into my skin at times because I can’t get my arm straight in the position it is in. 

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1 minute ago, Calm said:

So it is not my imagination that it is now more painful?  I thought I was just more sensitive to pain these days. But I don’t remember them being so tight or so wide as to cut into my skin at times because I can’t get my arm straight in the position it is in. 

It's not your imagination. They're freaking awful now. I first noticed it about 5 or 8 years ago.

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6 hours ago, IndyBelle said:

I'm new here, I'm not sure if this topic aligns with other topics here, because it's something about the church that I'm struggling with. I've been struggling with a few things, but this one is really eating at me today, so here I am. I'm in some LDS Facebook groups, but I didn't feel comfortable posting there. So hi! Teenage convert (13 years ago), married, 4 kids.

Okay.

Does anyone struggle with the church being so family-centered, and yet they ask one or both parents to leave their family duties to help with church activities/callings all the time? 
The whole four years my husband was in dental school, which is challenging enough for a young family, he was YM President. We went from 1-3 babies during the duration of his calling — that’s how long he was in it. And during that time he never missed an event. He was going to mutual every week and staying after for hours, doing Boy Scouts activities, camp outs once a month, sometimes week-long camp outs, going to church early, staying at church late, driving kids to church dances, chaperoning dances, dropping what he was doing to give someone a ride, the list goes on as many of you know. I look back on that time and think, wow. We were stretched so thin because of church during an already stressful time in our lives. And anytime I’d try to put my foot down and say, “No, not this time. I really need you helping me with the kids today.” He felt like he was letting everyone down by helping me, so he would choose the calling. It drove me nuts.
Fast forward to him now having a stake calling as YM secretary, and it’s youth conference this weekend. After already coming home late from work every day this week, and me having mental breakdowns and anxiety attacks (something new and scary for me to navigate. I recently had baby #4, and never felt like this before), he went straight from work to attend the conference yesterday and didn’t come home until after midnight, and was up this morning at 6 to go again and won’t be back until 6 tonight. He felt like he’d me letting them down if he helped me.
It’s just super hard for me to be literally crying out for help for years now, and our family comes second to church stuff.
Feelings of resentment are really stirring up, and I don’t want to feel that way towards the church. I know service is important. I know. But why is it so often prioritized over families?
Again, sorry if this is not in line with the purpose of this forum. 😳

I can completely understand why it’s been so much. I’ve luckily had a husband where this hasn’t been a big issue. He’s not very concerned about what other people think of him to begin with. And his highest priority has always been the family. When we had our baby he made it clear to the bishop he’d be stepping back a bit from his YM’s calling for the bit to be with us and when she ended up having some health concerns he stepped out entirely to help out. It’s now me with the yw’s calling (he’s a ward clerk). We give only what is needed  and nothing more. I told them when it became clear my daughter would have some rough bedtimes without me that I’d only make it to a couple activities a month and could likely only go to parts of Yw camp due to work. I could take off…but I want that time for when my MIL comes in from peru to go on a family trip. 
 

to me it’s about prioritizing our stewardships and I feel the church has purposely made changes to the programs in the organization to remind people of that. In YM/YW specifically to have a team of people coordinating youth activities, Sunday schools, etc, for a reason. No one needs to be there for every activity and experience they’re having. Youth callings are definitely important…but ones family is above that in priority. 
I think it’s easy to forget that …and especially so  for people who are a bit more people pleaser oriented. They see so much need and people thanking them for what they’ve done and likely a genuine do-gooder attitude. It’s initially so much easier to just do it all than to deal with the discomfort of saying no or the distress when it’s not what it “could be.” But it’s not just having faith that service is important. But that a team doing just a little service each is enough. That we have faith others will learn to pick up the ball or that if they won’t, our part as is is enough for the day. People come to expect a ton from just a few people in the ward, and that’s not fair or right and in the end, IMHO, reduces the opportunity for others to learn to lift as well. 

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5 minutes ago, Chum said:

It's not your imagination. They're freaking awful now. I first noticed it about 5 or 8 years ago.

That gives me a boost.  :)  My memory has enough glitches, it is reassuring to learn it is still mostly decent.

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Quote

Would our perspective be more clear if we could, for a moment, look upon parenthood as a calling in the Church? Actually, it is so much more than that; but if we could look at it that way for a moment, we could reach a better balance in the way we schedule families.

Quote

I do not want anyone to use what I say to excuse them in turning down an inspired call from the Lord. I do want to encourage leaders to carefully consider the home lest they issue calls or schedule activities which place an unnecessary burden on parents and families.Recently I read a letter from a young couple whose callings in the Church frequently require them to hire a sitter for their small children in order for them to attend their meetings. It has become very difficult for both of them to be home with their children at the same time. Can you see something out of balance there?Every time you schedule a youngster, you schedule a family—particularly the mother.Consider the mother who, in addition to her own Church calling and that of her husband, must get her children ready and run from one activity to another. Some mothers become discouraged—even depressed. I receive letters using the word guilt because they cannot do it all.Attending church is, or should be, a respite from the pressures of everyday life. It should bring peace and contentment. If it brings pressure and discouragement, then something is out of balance.And the Church is not the only responsibility parents have. Other agencies have a very legitimate reason to call upon the resources of the family—schools, employers, community—all need to be balanced in.

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/manual/eternal-marriage-student-manual/priorities-and-balance/parents-in-zion?lang=eng

This is from Boyd K. Packer, not someone known for telling people they should feel okay with coasting through life.

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We went through this struggle as well.  My husband felt "guilty" about not helping with church.  About not helping enough at work.  He felt that if he didn't do all those things then it would be his fault if someone fell through the cracks or his fault if someone lost their job etc.  

It took a number of years and he is still working on it, but he is so much better now.  When he sees younger men headed in that direction he tries to counsel with them that the time they are putting into many of the things isn't as important as they might think.

Know one thing - if your husband doesn't feel this it won't change well.  You can put down boundaries for him, but it may create negative feelings in him.  So I would try to work with him first.

I just spoke briefly about this on another thread so the timing makes me laugh a little. One of the things that changed it for us was putting God as the only priority.  

I know people say family first, but if that's the case then your son wanting you to drawing another picture with him will come first every time before a young man in the ward about ready to commit suicide.  Now I think sometimes that picture might need tocome first, but 99% of the time that YM so close to suicide should come first.

By putting God as only my husband was able to ask himself, "does God want me eating dinner with my wife right now, working on merit badges with my scouts  or finishing that project at work?"

He knew God was aware of his capabilities.  He knew He wouldn't give him more than he could do.  Logically this meant that if He wanted him at home then either someone else who should be taking care of church could or it didn't need to be done and he didn't need to feel guilty.  He didn't need to worry about the other stuff because he was where he should be.

Like I said it didn't come all at once, but as we started working together so he could figure this out things really began to change.  

I would let him know if I or the kids had wants or needs, but I had him ask himself and in prayer "is ____ where I should be?"  I told him that if he was really willing to be wherever God wanted even if it was home then I would support him in wherever that was even if at church.  

Because he understood the process and trusted me once he got that understanding it worked.  He spent much more time with family.  He didn't have near as much so called guilt that he wasn't in 3 places at once.  He found he didn't accomplish any less and was much happier.

 

Edited by Rain
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I've said no to attending calling related church meetings in the past, and I fully expect to do it again. I also know many other people that will put family ahead of church calling meetings.

The way I figure, when Gordon B. Hinckley was talking about the four priorities in life, he put a lot more effort into the family aspect than the church aspect (as well as speaking about family prior to speaking about church). https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/ensign/1999/02/lifes-obligations?lang=eng

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11 hours ago, IndyBelle said:

I'm new here, I'm not sure if this topic aligns with other topics here, because it's something about the church that I'm struggling with. I've been struggling with a few things, but this one is really eating at me today, so here I am. I'm in some LDS Facebook groups, but I didn't feel comfortable posting there. So hi! Teenage convert (13 years ago), married, 4 kids.

Okay.

Does anyone struggle with the church being so family-centered, and yet they ask one or both parents to leave their family duties to help with church activities/callings all the time? 
The whole four years my husband was in dental school, which is challenging enough for a young family, he was YM President. We went from 1-3 babies during the duration of his calling — that’s how long he was in it. And during that time he never missed an event. He was going to mutual every week and staying after for hours, doing Boy Scouts activities, camp outs once a month, sometimes week-long camp outs, going to church early, staying at church late, driving kids to church dances, chaperoning dances, dropping what he was doing to give someone a ride, the list goes on as many of you know. I look back on that time and think, wow. We were stretched so thin because of church during an already stressful time in our lives. And anytime I’d try to put my foot down and say, “No, not this time. I really need you helping me with the kids today.” He felt like he was letting everyone down by helping me, so he would choose the calling. It drove me nuts.
Fast forward to him now having a stake calling as YM secretary, and it’s youth conference this weekend. After already coming home late from work every day this week, and me having mental breakdowns and anxiety attacks (something new and scary for me to navigate. I recently had baby #4, and never felt like this before), he went straight from work to attend the conference yesterday and didn’t come home until after midnight, and was up this morning at 6 to go again and won’t be back until 6 tonight. He felt like he’d me letting them down if he helped me.
It’s just super hard for me to be literally crying out for help for years now, and our family comes second to church stuff.
Feelings of resentment are really stirring up, and I don’t want to feel that way towards the church. I know service is important. I know. But why is it so often prioritized over families?
Again, sorry if this is not in line with the purpose of this forum. 😳

Heya, we are glad to have you here, and this is a perfect place to ask.

So, just so you know, Church official policy is that you put family first.  Period.

I'm going to tell you a story, not as a firm rule, but as an example of how this principle played out.

On my mission, I met a couple who hardly came to church.  He wanted to, but she was super people shy, and so they didn't go.  He struggled with it, but his top priority was to support his wife.  Ultimately, something was worked out where he came in the building while she sat out in the car, and they both got the sacrament.  Because we as missionaries talked to him, she got a better impression of us, and didn't shy away from us as much when we talked to her later.

Now I'm sure it would have been better had she made it in the church building to partake of the sacrament, but she wasn't at that point yet.  And her husband, being considerate, accommodated her.  I'm sure there are other situations where there would need to be more weight put on church activity (for example, someone shouldn't ask a spouse to not believe or else, or the likes), but there are many times where some church things will need to be put second.

Anyways... it's okay to turn down a calling.  It's okay to tell your husband that YOU need more time with him.  Your family is part of your calling after all, and it's super important!  It's okay if you both don't do quite as much 'church calling' stuff if it helps your family function better, and maintains your sanity.

That doesn't mean drop everything probably - church callings really do build us up in ways we can't understand.  I heard from a wise bishop once that said that the Lord calls bishops when they are unqualified, and the moment they get qualified, he releases them.  It's the same with other callings in the church.  So if you have the time and energy, and want the blessings that come from a calling, receive it.  If you or your family are felling frayed at the ends (like you are now), it may be best to pray about it, and consider saying no at this time.  Talk to the Lord about it in prayer with your hubby, and figure out what works best for your family.

As for how to talk about it with your husband... I have this same issue with my wife... and the best way my wife helps me realize this is just by talking about it gently with me and letting me know how much I am needed by her at home.  So I would suggest expressing this to your husband, kindly, but also very thoroughly, about how you are feeling frayed.  Help him to understand how you are feeling.  He loves you, I'm sure.  He may feel a bit unsure of what to do, and a bit sad, as you have said.  But it's important you let him know how you feel, in the least.  Don't accuse him, but do let him know how you feel.  Perhaps others have good advice on this front, but that's what I'd give.

I wish you the best.

P.S.  Also take a look at Rain's post.  It's some good stuff.

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20 hours ago, IndyBelle said:

It’s just super hard for me to be literally crying out for help for years now, and our family comes second to church stuff.

Nope, it doesn't. But if it does, then it better stop doing it.

I happen to be retired, edging up to 70 years old, and they can call me to three or four callings and that'd be great. It would only be a problem if I didn't have enough time to attend to them all adequately. At one time I was a financial clerk, high priests group instructor, stake family canning co-coordinator, and stake emergency communications specialist. I was not overloaded at all, since we were empty nesters. But overloading willing members with callings, especially if they are families with young children or even teenagers, is an attack on the family. Your family is Job One. This is why bishops and stake presidents are not expected to minister, and why they must be master delegators.

The thing is, there are usually enough members hanging around so that the load can be spread out. If there is an important task, and it all depends upon one person, they are doing something wrong. And if they can't find enough people to adequately staff a program, that is not a signal to overload the willing, it is a signal to scale back the program!!!!!

This all reminds me of a poem I once heard:

Mary had a little lamb,
It turned into a sheep,
And then it joined the Mormon Church,
And died from lack of sleep.

If that poem isn't a joke in someone's particular case, it better become one, real quick.

Edited by Stargazer
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I'd be resentful too in that situation.  I have 2 thoughts which may or may not be helpful.

1).  postpartum anxiety is a real condition, that can be similar or connected to postpartum depression or it can present all on it's own, that they can treat with meds.  Talk to your doctor to get the help that you need.  I can spiral and get worse so don't put that off.  Meds can make such a difference and you do not need to white knuckle your way through these next few months.

2).  Maybe it would be helpful to explore whether or not your husband is ignoring your concerns because him leaving the house for these callings is his way of dealing with his own anxiety and the stress that is centered in the home.   It could be that he is unwilling to miss anything because he prefers to easier route of church responsibility rather than the really hard route of family and home responsibility, which doesn't often come with all the perks that hanging out with other adults and doing fun activities with the youth does.   

If that is the reason, then he also needs to deal with that and come to terms with the way he is coping with his mental health stresses so that it doesn't leave it all on you.  He might not even realize he's coping that way so this might be something to really delve into when you both are in a good space to talk about it.

BUT, if push came to shove I would go in to speak with the bishop or the stake president and discuss the burden the calling is putting on you and how it is hurting your family.  I'd try to go with my husband but i'd do it without him if I had to.  It could be that a leader could then help your husband manage his time better.

Family is supposed to come first.  Some sacrifice will always be necessary but it can't be all sacrifice for the people at home.  That won't work.  Something will give and it'll probably by your marriage.

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I am not privy to any information about your experience but your situation set off an alarm bell in my head because it sounds similar to two other situations I know of. One involved the church and the other a job.

I hope this does not come across as me being a jerk (though I often am a jerk) as I am genuinely trying to be helpful. Is it possible that there is something at home or in his life that your husband may be consciously or unconsciously escaping by burying himself in callings? I am all for fulfilling callings but this seems odd. Staying hours after mutual? For what? The kids go home. What is there left to do after cleanup? Going to church early and staying late? Unless you are talking about stuff like Ward Council or Youth meetings there is not that much to do at church outside of the block. I don't have a solution if that is the problem either.

I had a friend who threw herself into everything related to the church and spent time away because she felt inadequate as a mother and was more comfortable in a church setting where she felt she could succeed. Also knew a guy who knew invented reasons to stay at work late because he had trouble coping with life at home. Both are better last I heard.

I am wondering if it is something like that motivating your husband.

Good luck. It can get better.

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Church callings in my family growing up were so important that my father never attended any of my ball games and other sporting events. Well I can’t say never because I’m sure he made it to at least one but I couldn’t tell you what it was.

meetings on tue, wed, thurs and Sunday’s, temple nights on fridays and saturdays and also service projects or regional meetings on Saturdays as well. He was never home- ever. These big ticket callings kill family life. The mental breakdowns of mothers who can’t get help with the half dozen kids are real. My dad was either in the bishopric, stake presidency or the stake pres and higher my entire life up to when I grad high school. 
 

That life sucks for the kids and wife. Some might say I am a bit bitter about it. That would be a bullseye. You might be bitter as well if your entire childhood was ripped off so your dad could sit in meetings for twenty years. 
 

bishop life is reportedly just as bad. 
 

Thank goodness I chose a path which makes me about a third string choice for any of the time intensive callings. 

Edited by secondclasscitizen
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I’m sorry you are struggling so.  
 

Since we are not privy to your husbands philosophy of callings and the right to prioritize family, nor do we understand his drive or his inability to tell people “no” in general, my first questions are, is he completely clear regarding how unhappy you are? 
Have you considered couples therapy? 
Do you both enjoy each other’s company when you are together? 
you are in the thick of it.  Hands down, the hardest years of my life.  Until you get this sorted out, would you be willing to hire help?  Not as a solution but as a place holder until he recognizes how crucial it is that he redirect his efforts. 
Postpartum was mentioned previously- please consider the possibility, because it is treatable.  You’re most likely to get your needs met if you are healthy and able to express your needs from a centered place . 
My heart aches for your struggle.  I promise it gets much better- but communicating clearly is so very critical.  You matter. 

 

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