En Sabah Nur
Date: November 26, 2010 07:02PM
From my own personal experiences and those related to me by friends and family, missionary life is rarely the testimony-building, spiritually edifying affair that Mormons popularly believe. Young Mormon men are still men, and they WILL look for ways to relieve themselves from the buckets-loads of testosterone that aches to be released. When I was still a member I was forbidden from recounting the more coarse and salacious stories of my mission, but now that I'm no longer under any obligation to keep mum I'd like to share. I'm also very curious to know if any of you have experienced anything similar.
Note: I served in Australia, which is known for its sexual promiscuity. There were many, many opportunities for us to be unchaste. Some of us kept ourselves occupied with, ahem, solitary activities, and were able to rebuff advances, but many I knew decided they much preferred team sports.
Here are a few tidbits from my mission:
-Starting at the end, I caught my next-to last companion in bed with one of our investigators. I knew that he regularly left our flat in the middle of the night to see her, but this night for whatever reason they decided to have a riskier encounter. I cursed at him and told him that if he was going to that he could at least choose a different room than the one we share. Later he tried to tell me that she was just cold and he was sharing his warmth, but that didn't quite explain why her clothes were laying beside the bed.
-In my second area my ZL's were known to regularly invite women over to their flat. I didn't believe it at the time, but a while later I became very good friends with the family of one of those girls. She was 16.
-In that same zone I befriended a missionary with whom I shared a love of art. We spoke all the time and used to go on splits just so we could stay home to chat and sketch (No funny business, I promise). One day he confided in me that he had feelings for one of our ZL's. I shouldn't have been shocked that he was gay, but it took me a little bit to adjust to this information. I asked him if he planned to do anything about his feelings to which he responded that he wouldn't, but less than 2 weeks later he was on a flight home. I called him when I found out he was leaving, and all he said was, "Something happened between us." I found out later from one of his flat mates what had happened: they had engaged each other one night, and in the morning the ZL called the Pres and claimed the other missionary had made advances on him. ZL finished his mission "with honor," and my friend was sent home in disgrace.
I have many, many tales from my mission, but this will suffice for now. They're not all sexual, either: I experienced everything from theft to hitchhiking cross-country to brutal physical violence. I even had a companion who deliberately made up points of church history and gospel doctrine that he would share with potential investigators just to screw with them and infuriate me! At the time I was a little horrified, but now I am bewildered at how interesting my life was for those two years and how it was NOTHING like I had expected.
Any other RM's out there with interesting tales from the mission field?