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Sunday, February 4, 2007

Mean Girls

So, a couple of months ago one of my friends was asked to substitute-teach in Relief Society. She was 8.5 months pregnant and bloated, so none of her clothes, even her maternity clothes, were fitting very well. But she tried her best to look nice, and she felt good about how her lesson went.

So, she was somewhat surprised to see in her mailbox, later that week, a letter from the Young Women's president. It was not a thank-you note. Instead, she called my friend on the carpet for her inappropriate dress on the day of her lesson, specifically the way her cleavage had been visible when she bent over, and the way the hem of her garment bottom was visible through the front slit of her skirt when she sat down without her knees firmly together. She excoriated my friend for setting a bad example for the Young Women in the ward.

When my friend related this story to me, I was livid (even called the YW pres, whom I have not met, a "self-righteous sanctimonious bitch"). Where do people like this get off? What made her think sending that letter was a good idea? What made her think that it would accomplish anything other than making my friend feel bad? My guess is she is so caught up in her rigid set of ideas about what is and what's not appropriate that she has completely lost her grasp on common sense.

So I know this kind of thing happens a lot with Mormons, particularly Mormon women. And while this woman's mailed letter was an extreme example, I'm sure those of you of Mormon-ish background can think of other, more passive-aggressive ways she might have accomplished the same end, even doing it in front of others for the added Rameumptom ("look how righteous I am") benefit. You all are clever--put them in the comments field. Here's one: "When my daughter was pregnant, she found these great little camisoles to wear under low-necked shirts. I'll ask her where she got them for you." Are other (conservative) religions equally prone to sanctimony?

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4 Comments:

Blogger MWR said...

I was at a family gathering yesterday where it was reported that when my great-grandparents were young and showed some slight affection in a family setting, like a modest kiss, their German Catholic elders would say "that's for the bedroom."

February 5, 2007 at 5:49 PM  
Blogger Swizzies said...

Jeez, JA, just load my gun for me why don'tcha!? ;-)

So, let me say YET AGAIN, that mormons *generally* have a tendency toward serious lack of manners and social graces. Might I point out that this 8.5 month pregnant woman is there voluntarily in the first place? And on top of that, she had graciously said yes to filling in for someone else and prepared a lesson plan. And that she got dressed up while nearly at the birthing point, and likely stood on her feet a lot. So, people who not only don't say thank you, but also find occasion to nitpick, well, they should SHOVE IT. Seriously, YW Pres, GO POUND SAND.

What I really dislike about these vile offenders is that they seem to get away with it time and again. I certainly would have had a conversation with her about it - but I am guessing nothing was ever said to her face, no one holding her accountable for her wretched behavior. Women are the most effective tool of the patriarchy. Makes me friggin nuts.

Well, I realize the assignment was to come up with a "fun" story of my own. Hmph. I'm not amused by rude jerks, but I did used to laugh when people looked askance at me for wearing trousers to church. And my grandmother has always been pretty rude (she saves it for family mostly) about appearances and clothing, but she is a liberal mainline protestant, so I don't blame her on religion.

February 6, 2007 at 1:09 AM  
Blogger Mabel Maybe said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

February 11, 2007 at 12:28 AM  
Blogger Mabel Maybe said...

I wonder if that self-righteous sanctimonious bitch sends letters to every woman she can all the time, of if she singles out pregnant women especially.

We need to find out, so we can mail her some conduct and costume tips of our own!

February 11, 2007 at 12:29 AM  

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