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Posted by: mmproject ( )
Date: July 01, 2012 02:51PM

One of the more damaging teachings of the church is its unofficial stances on masturbation. (I say unofficial, because these days they won't even say the term publicly, it's not in the handbook or temple interview questions, you can only find a few things about it on, it's never spoken of in General Conference, and yet a large portion of local leaders focus on it.) I personally went through years of depression, guilt, and self-hate because I couldn't stop masturbating a few times a week. Realizing one day that there really wasn't anything wrong with the act is one of the big things that led me out of the church.

As a easily influenced teenager I was subject to dozens and dozens of interviews with bishops about my masturbation "problem". I was promised time and time again that I could stop doing it if only I had the faith, prayed harder, fasted more, read more scriptures, etc, etc. I could go weeks or even a few months but then there would always be that one day where the sexual desire would just be overwhelming and I would masturbate. Thus spiralling back down into misery and self-hate. As a young kid I was denied the sacrament for literally months on end because of my "problem". This was public shaming, plain and simple, and very damaging for a kid to go through.

After discovering various post and ex-Mormon communities I've discovered how many other people have gone through the exact same thing that I have. I thought I was almost alone in my struggle, and felt ashamed at how weak and wicked of a person I must be. Only to be surprised that it was completely normal, and that most people (even members of the church) masturbate. And that many other members of the church have also gone through the self-loathing as a result of the church's teachings.

I wish I would have known years ago that masturbation is not wrong, and that I wasn't a bad person for doing it. As such, I'm starting a project that will hopefully help bring some peace or understanding to both current members, members currently undergoing disaffection of some sort, or post/ex members that feel guilt and shame because of masturbation. At the very least, I want the resources out there for somebody struggling, and the understanding that they are not alone. (As I felt alone as a kid struggling with this.)

I registered the following domain, and have put up a holding page for now, as I work on this project:

I'm interested in hearing what people think about the project. Any suggestions, criticisms, etc, are welcome. Also, I want there to eventually be a section of the site that has the stories of various people that have struggled with this. I'll eventually post more of my story on the site, and am looking for others willing to share their story of how the church's teachings of masturbation have affected them.

I made a contact page that you can fill out if you want to share your story that way:

Also, feel free to post it here as well. If you do, please let me know whether or not I am welcome to share it on the site, and whether I can use your name/screenname, or if I should just attribute it to Anonymouse.

Thank you, and let me know what you all think!

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Posted by: Kay ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 09:58AM

I’m so sorry that that happened to you! No one deserves to be shamed for something like that. As a former investigator, I’ve seen the signs indicating that even the missionaries would do that on occasion. (In addition, the obvious guilt they felt whenever they got turned on by anything—even if it was some girl trying to come onto them...which wasn’t their fault—was so misplaced and downright wrong.) At least you were honest. Plus, you weren’t (and never will be) alone.

This website is a great idea! *applause* I’m sure it’ll be awesome! =)

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Posted by: False doctrine ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 10:47AM

I wish the entire congregation would just keep it real and understand there isn't a kid up at that sacrament table that didn't whack off this past week. And yet there those boys are, feeling guilty as hell without enough life wisdom to realize that Johnny sittin next to him did the same thing he did all week every chance he got. And up there sits the bishop who made all of them liars when he interviewed them.

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Posted by: hikergrl ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 05:07PM

Let's hope they washed their hands before touching the bread.

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Posted by: cludgie ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 06:22PM

Naw, they likely didn't. Kinda why I quit eating it eventually.

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Posted by: cludgie ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 06:28PM

// wrong place--sorry //

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/16/2015 06:29PM by cludgie.

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Posted by: hikergrl ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 10:48AM

As a comparison, please do your homework regarding what mainstream Christian Churches teach regarding masturbation. Just last week I gave my youngest son a Christian book which covered the topic. The book said masturbation was normal and debunked a few myths. The only warning was that too much preoccupation with it may affect developing social relationships. The book went on to recommend the boys the develop a wide variety of interests.

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Posted by: lenina ( )
Date: January 17, 2015 04:30AM

What book is this? Want to share it with my preteen kids too.

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Posted by: Elder OldDog ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 11:03AM

Certainly, anything that can be done to debunk the mormon point of view that masturbation and adultery are on a par, sin-wise, right up there next to shedding innocent blood, is welcome! And it plays into one of my pet peeves, frickin' Mosiah's Natural Man being the enemy to ghawd. What a mind fuck that is!

As an aside... When my eyes saw "mormonmasturbation(dot)org" my first thought was of that this was a perfect description of ward temple night.

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Posted by: anon666 ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 11:22AM

Masturbation is the tool the morg uses to teach a boy to lie. They know he will do it. They won’t let him go on a mission until he lies about it. It is the prerequisite conditioning they require of all missionaries because of the lying they will be doing for the next two years.
I remember my missionary trainer getting pissed off because an investigator asked if we believed in the Trinity. I answered no. My mom was Catholic so I knew what the lady was asking. After the discussion, my trainer laid into me. “You always answer yes to that question. We believe in the trinity!” he said. There were tons of lies like that we were required to tell.
Anyway, they conditioned me to lie about the whole masturbation thing so lying for the lord wasn’t that far of a stretch.
Don’t forget the guilt from it was certainly used to manipulate and control. The whole masturbation thing has nothing to do with chastity and they know it.

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Posted by: Hikergrl ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 05:12PM

You nailed it!

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Posted by: The StalkerDog™ ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 11:27AM

Many- possibly most- mammals do it, and birds, too.

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Posted by: Greg123 ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 12:29PM

My bitbulls prefer to give themselves blow-jobs! LOL!

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Posted by: anonforthisone ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 02:02PM

I struggled with it as a female teenager to the point of depression for months after I would do it. It constantly kept me out of the temple. I cannot tell you how many times I would skip telling the bishop about it just to go on a temple trip and end up feeling too guilty to go through with Baptisms for the Dead. I would sit in the waiting area and watch Mahanna You Ugly over and over again until my peers finished doing the baptisms. I finally didn't feel as guilty about it in my early twenties, when I thought my way out of that cult. My doctor told me it is actually the best remedy for menstrual cramps at around this time, which made me feel even less guilty about it. I was mad that I had wasted so much of my youth feeling like a freak of nature for feeling guilty about my female sexuality. It was said to me by my bishops over and over again that only males should have these urges. Consequently, I was also always "in trouble" for french kissing boys. I don't know why I confessed so much. I saved my virginity for my husband my wedding night, so in looking back, there was nothing to have felt guilty about all those years. I just have a high sex drive. Plain and simple. When I had to go through the temple years later because I was seeking an ecccliastical endorsement from a bishop who seemed iffy on giving me one, I was worried. I no longer believed, but wanted to graduate from BYU. He seemed satisfied that if I went through the temple, this must mean I believed still, so I went. I took a shot of vodka before the ceremony and in one of the changing stalls, masturbated right there in the temple as my own personal "eff you" to the church and all of those bastards who had made me feel guilty about it all those years.

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Posted by: ThW5 ( )
Date: January 17, 2015 08:56AM

Mind you, it is actually the orgasm which is supposed to help, but masturbation is the quickest, fastest, safest method for girls to reach that, even if married.

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Posted by: anon69 ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 03:49PM

Will this include how-to instructional video...some people may not know how, since its taboo. It may be helpful....

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Posted by: beyondashadow ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 04:02PM

I see two reasons for the Church to declare masturbation = disgusting, immoral, perverted violation of the Law of Chastity:

1) The only 'legal/moral/righteous' orgasm available to a TBM is a vaginal orgasm (no birth control) with your spouse ... with some non-zero chance of conceiving a new Tithe Payer. The sexuality of the entire Church membership is thus held hostage for money.

2) anon666 nailed the other reason above. Members who spend perfectly useful energy loathing themselves are more likely to stay under control and less likely to get themselves a clue and leave the Church. (Thank you, anon666, for nailing this on the head.)

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/16/2015 04:03PM by beyondashadow.

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Posted by: adoylelb ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 04:13PM

I think that the reason masturbation is seen as being such a serious sin is that it's one way to control people through their sexuality. I agree that the only acceptable form of sexuality in Mormonism is missionary vaginal intercourse with your spouse and that's only to bring in more tithe payers since it's the easiest way to boost membership numbers.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/16/2015 04:14PM by adoylelb.

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Posted by: anon for this one too ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 04:42PM

I don't know how many hours I logged with numerous bishops confessing, crying, feeling shame, and not making much progress. Didn't leave on a mission until much later, was made to go to THERAPY at BYU to see if I could quit (I almost put "overcome", but thought better of it), lied a lot; almost didn't get a TR coming home from my mission because I couldn't get it in check.

Therapist recommended I have an open conversation with one of my siblings about it, just so I felt like someone knew me.

I felt like a social/Mormon/religious pariah because I, like the OP, was convinced that I was the only person in the whole world with this problem.

Good luck with your project.

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Posted by: cludgie ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 06:30PM

Let me tell you about my beloved cat who got cancer at 19 and had to be put down: He was just a castrated male cat, but when the mood struck him, he would take a little blanket, ball it up under his chest, and begin to make like he was humping it. He'd get an erection and everything. We thought it was funny, but DW would eventually tell him to knock it off and would shoo him away. So yeah, even cats. I also once took a tour of a bonobo sanctuary, and bonobos are famous for their sexuality. They aim to please each other, and when one gets angry at the other, they make up with them by having sex. Or if they are both of the same sex, they will masturbate each other. In fact, there is a lot of bisexuality going on there. So, yeah, even apes.

I'm willing to bet that all mammals got something going on.

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Posted by: bradley ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 07:26PM

If you repress sexuality, it's going to come out in different ways. Masturbation being the least harmful, so it's the most common. So they cause the "problem" and then guilt you about your "problem".

If I had a dollar for each time I'd wanked, I could retire.

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Posted by: thingsithink ( )
Date: January 16, 2015 09:06PM

Why? Are you getting paid to do it now?

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Posted by: Anon45 ( )
Date: January 17, 2015 01:54AM

I kept a record of how many times I jerked off on my mission. I found that masturbation calmed me down. I was calm for the large part of my mission!

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Posted by: beyondashadow ( )
Date: January 17, 2015 03:21AM

I should have given my socks names and blessings. My socks were wonderful, low maintenance dates. Here are some the advantages of dating your socks:

- Always available; no need to plan ahead

- Very quiet; they never scream 'Thank You Jesus!"

- Very discrete; they never tell my companion or the MP about our clandestine liaisons.

- Evidence disappears in the wash

- Socks never get pregnant

- Socks don't care if you don't call them the next day; hell, they don't care if you never see them again.

- Unless your laundry gets swapped with your companion's, your socks will remain faithful to you.

- Others will think up dozens of additional sock-dating pros. (I don't think there are any cons.)

BTW, for you Spanish speakers, spelling out s-o-c-k-s in English is a sentence in Spanish.

Eso si que es.

You can pretend to have an intelligent conversation with any Spanish speaker even if you don't understand a word of Spanish. Every so often, just nod your head, look thoughtful, and spell out s-o-c-k-s in English. It means "Yes, that's the way it is."

Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 01/17/2015 03:26AM by beyondashadow.

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Posted by: lenina ( )
Date: January 17, 2015 04:42AM

beyondashadow Wrote:
> Eso si que es.
> You can pretend to have an intelligent
> conversation with any Spanish speaker even if you
> don't understand a word of Spanish. Every so
> often, just nod your head, look thoughtful, and
> spell out s-o-c-k-s in English. It means "Yes,
> that's the way it is."

Language fun

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Posted by: annieg ( )
Date: January 17, 2015 10:09AM

Priceless. The humour here is one of the reasons I come to this site often.

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Posted by: snb ( )
Date: January 17, 2015 01:38PM

Hah, I messed up. I spelled it out like this:

Ese o se ka ese...and I had no idea what you were talking about. You meant English, not Spanish! :)

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Posted by: Cold-Dodger ( )
Date: January 17, 2015 04:25AM

Your story sounded almost word for word like mine.

This website needs made. Do it.

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Posted by: Cold-Dodger ( )
Date: January 17, 2015 04:57AM

The church spends all its energy teaching people how to wall off their sexuality. It tells them "No No No!" their whole lives. Sure, we are told that we're allowed to excercise it in marriage, but we wait many years during which we're not allowed to excercise it at all. But it starts functioning 2-3 years before we're even allowed to date and 6-8 years before we're even eligible to marry. It's longer for men, who have to serve a mission "worthily." It isn't possible to perfectly abstain from even having a sexual thought, ever. This is insane, but this is what is asked of the youth, and a very exquisite guilt is carefully cultured. Young men and women have very obvious shame tactics used against them. The whole time, they are fed a narrative to only listen to the prophet. Don't listen to scientists when they contradict the prophet. The prophet is the watchman on the tower. oh, yes, the prophet knows, even if we don't understand why. So they only look towards the church for their sex education, but the church tragically never teaches them what sex and healthy sexual behavior look like. when the church isn't biting it's tongue, it's using a scorched earth policy of guilt-inducing shame that sends the clear message that sex is evil. Any public show of affection is carefully governed by the For Strength of Youth. Poorly educated people go to their bishops uneasily wondering if they are bad people, and in return they are given everything they need to hear that "yes, you are broken." And since sex is so taboo that most mormons only know about it in vague attract terms, most people easily come away with the impression that something is fundamentally wrong with them. Most parents and local leaders don't deliberately mean to make their youth miserable, but it's what happens.
Communicate! Be transparent! For once, use the anatomically correct terms, and stop acting like just educating peoe about sex leads to deviant behavior. It does not.
In fact, part of agency is clearly defining opposing choices and making sure that the agents know they are free to act for themselves and not be acted upon. When you fail to educate because you think lack of knowledge about how to sin will protect them, you are following the devil's plan. The devil hates agency. He wants people to be coerced. Well, uninformed consent is no choice at all.
People in the church are irrationally afraid of sex, even just talking about sex! Stop it! It's doing untold damage! It's not your duty to make sure no one ever does wrong anywhere. We are agents unto ourselves. Just educate us like you should, but then we must be allowed to act for ourselves, or our "choices" are devoid of personal deliberation, and we don't grow from having made them.
And another thing, explain clearly why sex should not be excercised before marriage. Give a clear reason besides "it doesn't please God" because that just gives the impression that God hates sex. This is not true. We are created in the image of the gods, male and female! This means sex is designed after a divine pattern. Teach it from this perspective instead. And stop telling the youth that porn and masturbation are wrong because it has a drug-like effect on the brain. What? Is there some magical switch that gets flipped when you get married? It's the same chemical reaction in your brain chemistry, and you've just spent the first 20 years of their lives teaching them how to wall it off and feel guilty about it. You think this is healthy? You think this inst a factor in the thousands of youth coming to their bishops because they are depressed/anxious? There has to be a smarter way of doing things without compromising the standard that sex be used in matrimony, and smarter doesn't mean more rules to feel guilty about! Stop putting hedges about the law! That's the very thing Christ criticized about the pharisees!

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/17/2015 05:04AM by Cold-Dodger.

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Posted by: Old Skewl ( )
Date: January 17, 2015 08:10AM

Thanks for sharing your story. It sounds a lot like my own. As part of a family gathering, I'm about to revisit to my old ward after 15 years being out of the Mormon church. I've been filled with dread thinking about having to shake hands with that skeevy old bishop who used to ask me whether I masturbate. What a creep. He probably has no clue what kind of emotional distress he put me through nor is he aware of how his perverse view of masturbation negatively impacted the development of my sexuality. He took away some of my innocence. I've decided to write him a letter and tell him that I consider those interviews to have been way out of line and damaging and to just stay the hell away from me when I'm there. Why should we play nice with these people?

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Posted by: axeldc ( )
Date: January 17, 2015 09:00AM

I felt so bad about myself as a teenager because of this. Combine it with the fact that my fantasies were all gay and I felt I was a terrible person. It kept me being completely clean and sober growing up, but made me very angry when I realized what a mindf#ck it was.

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Posted by: annieg ( )
Date: January 17, 2015 10:10AM

How did you get away from the cult?

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Posted by: Healing Man ( )
Date: January 17, 2015 01:34PM

Here's an interesting article about this subject that I just read.

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