Did You Orgasm?

OrgasmYesterday’s Dirty & Damaging Closed Door Counsel

For decades, Stake Presidents and Bishops counseled gay men to do something totally misguided.  Their recommendation to homosexual young men was to get married.  Once they were hitched and came face to face with a naked woman, their gayness would magically go away.

This uninspired guidance has resulted in many, many unhappy  marriages.  Heartache.  Divorce.  Broken families.  Today, we know that this was ridiculous and damaging advice coming from trusted Bishops and Stake Presidents.  Well meaning?  Probably.  Improper?  Absolutely.

The horrid advice of telling gay men to just get married, had a direct affect on MY family.  One of my daughters was engaged to a awesome man.  We all loved him and thought we knew him well.  Today, we still love him and count him as a great friend.  But, there was something that we did not know.  He was gay.  Bishops and Stake Presidents had counseled with him for years.  And guess what he was told.  MARRY SAM YOUNG’S DAUGHTER AND YOUR HOMOSEXUALITY WILL GO AWAY.  Yeah…that’s right.  A high church leader telling a gay man to marry MY daughter.  That was wrong.  My daughter was wronged.  Her fiancé was wronged.  I and my family were wronged.  All at the hands of the church.

Fortunately, ten days before the wedding bells were to ring, warning bells sounded instead.  The temple marriage was called off.  My daughter is now happily married to a heterosexual man.  My almost son-in-law is now happily married to a gay man.  In the end, all worked out as it should.  But, the damage to the psyche of all involved has taken a long time to heal.  If it has.

Decades ago, members should have been informed as to what counsel was being given to their gay kids.  Hopefully, we would have stood up and protested in order to protect our precious children.

Today’s Dirty & Damaging Closed Door Counsel

Bad things are going on with our children behind closed doors.  I thought I’d heard it all.  I hadn’t.  It’s sickening.

First, it is a common practice for 12 year old children, without their parents’ knowledge or consent to be questioned about masturbation.  One on one, all alone, with an older man.  This is a gross practice and should be called to a halt.

It has now come to my knowledge that many Bishops and Stake Presidents take the interview license, that we have allowed them, to a new level of depravity.  How would you like your 16 year old daughter to be asked, “Do you orgasm when you masturbate?”

Or try this one on for size.  Your 17 year old daughter confesses sex with a young man.  The bishop wants details.  “How many times did you orgasm?”  “Did your boyfriend orgasm?”  “How did he orgasm?”  “What kind of sexual positions were involved?”

What kind of crap is this?  All going on behind the closed doors of our chapels.

These kinds of questions are outrageous.  They are pornographic.  It causes lasting shame and guilt.  The harm done often persists into sexual relationships after marriage.

How do I know that masturbation is being discussed with 12 year olds all the way to decades-old members?  My own children have told me so.  I have openly asked many friends who have shared details of their masturbation interviews .

How do I know that orgasms and sexual positions are being discussed?  Well, my kids are NOT the source of this information.  I haven’t dared ask them yet.  If it was discussed with them, I’m going to be DAMN angry!  But, I have asked my friends.   When I posted my question, it received more comments than almost any other post I’ve ever made.

Until one week ago, I had no idea that these sexual details were being discussed with our kids…or adults for that matter.   And I was a Bishop for 5 years, for heaven’s sake.  So, why would I ask my friends if orgasms had ever been the topic of a bishop’s interview?  On last week’s post criticizing the practice of masturbation interviews, two people mentioned all the other stuff they were asked about.

Just like the horrid counsel to gay men to get married, these detailed sexual interviews MUST STOP!!!

I know that many who read this will say, “I was never asked, so this isn’t happening.”  I know there are Bishops who will say, “I never asked these questions, so it isn’t happening.”  Well fine.  For your reading pleasure or disgust, I’ve listed a smattering of responses below.

Testimonials of Inappropriate Bishop and Stake President Interviews

I posted the following question on Facebook.

“In a recent thread, 2 people said that they were asked about their ORGASMS during bishop interviews or in church courts. What the hell!!!  How did I miss out on this stuff while I served as bishop?  I’m super glad that I did.  Bare shoulders are NOT pornographic. Questioning a woman about her orgasms IS pornographic.  I know that it’s common for priesthood leaders to ask about masturbation. But, I had never heard of orgasmic queries. So, here’s my question, were you ever asked about orgasms in a bishop’s interview or in a disciplinary council?  If so, how old were you?”

Here are some of the responses.

Woman:  Two different bishops over the course of my life have asked me specifically about orgasm. The first time, I was 12, and it was just like, a youth interview that that bishop did regularly with all of the youth in our ward.  He asked about masturbation, and then specifically about orgasm, even after I answered “no” to the first question. 

The second bishop who asked me this question was when I was 21 or so, and I had turned to my singles ward bishop because I had been advised, and believed he would help me deal with the aftermath of (what I had recently come to understand had been) an emotionally, physically, and sexually *abusive* relationship. 

Instead of support and counsel, he asked me if I had ever had an orgasm from the “contact” during that relationship, and when I was honest with him that I had (as happens with many MANY survivors) he instructed me that I needed to go through the repentance process, for “my part” in what had happened.

Woman:  Yes.  In disciplinary council…it was terrible!

Man:  I was asked this as a 15 year old boy by my bishop…..I hated going to him.

Woman:  This happened when I was in my mid 20s, had 4 babies under 5, and was grieving my husband’s infidelity. It almost killed me:  My husband had an affair early in our marriage. Our ward split during his year of difellowship & the New bishop wanted to know every detail of their sexual contacts: positions, physical locations, number of orgasms. You name it. And he wanted me to be there while this was discussed “so that we are all on the same page.” Our sexual relationship never recovered & much of the reason was that six months of voyeuristic invasion & the terrible humiliation I was subjected to. I don’t want anyone else to suffer this.  (Sam:  This is an egregious example of the dreadful damage probing interviews can cause.)

Man:  Yes.  I was 12 or 13.

Woman:  I had a bishop ask me if I reached orgasm. I was a teenager. Sick, sick, sick.

Woman:  I am a woman and was asked about orgasms by 2 separate bishops in interviews. Once in high school and once in college (that same bishop commented on my shirt and how it was too revealing). I was also asked very detailed, inappropriate questions that I didn’t realize were inappropriate until much later after going to therapy.

Man:  Oh yeah. My Bishop did. That was a routine part of the masturbation confession.

Woman:  15 years old. My bishop asked about my boyfriend’s orgasm then asked if I had reached orgasm, if I had enjoyed it or felt guilty, the whole shebang.  It’s been more than 10 years since this, I’ve been married for 6 years, and I’m JUST getting to a point of having a healthy and happy relationship with sex and my body. These people are untrained and do lasting damage because of their lack of knowledge. Something has to change.

Woman:   I was 17 when I was asked. In front of a bunch of men too. The most humiliating experience of my life.

Man:  I had a Bishop ask where I had “finished” meaning in someone’s mouth, hand, etc…

Woman:  Oh this definitely happened. It happened to me as a youth and as an adult, like so often and commonplace that I thought it irrelevant in this thread.  It happened after I was raped at BYU but I was so traumatized by the rape that I don’t remember being able to answer his questions at all.

Woman:  I was called into a bishop’s interview. He asked me how my love life was.
I confessed to ‘messing around’ with a guy I really loved.  I was still a virgin though, because you know, no sex!  My bishop asked me to provide details. I obediently told my bishop, blushing the entire time.  I was asked about having an orgasm. I had. He wanted to know if the guy had. He had.

Man:  Had a friend tell me in his missionary application interview he came forth and confessed to intercourse. The bishop asked him if he achieved orgasim. He was shocked and asked him if it mattered. The bishop replied saying it did matter because it would weigh on his disicion of his worthiness.

Women:  It happened to me about a month ago while I was meeting with my Stake President in conjunction with asking for a Temple Sealing Cancellation from my predatory ex.

Woman:  After my mission I had a little affair with a women!  It was wonderful!  It resulted in a disciplinary council.   In that court was my Bishop plus 11 other men. The questions they asked me were horrific!!  I had one guy even asked how two women could have sex! How many times….. Where we had sex. And…. if I had an orgasm.  I left feeling like the most horrible person on earth.  I was sooooo embarrassed. I couldn’t hardly talk.

Man:  I was very lucky in having pretty darn good bishops all my life. One did tell me that my mission would make me straight, but I think he meant well (and I’m glad I went anyhow). But I’ve heard too many horror stories about prurient, over-detailed interrogations to believe that it’s a tiny problem.

Woman:  Detailed–DETAILED–answers needed for the court of “love.” Positions, types, frequency, everything.

Woman:  Yes, I was.. like that made the difference if I was worthy or not. If the guy orgasmed it was fine.. I just could not. So freaking ridiculous.

Woman:  Yes. I was 19 years old

Man:   In high school my bishop asked me if I ejaculated when my girlfriend had her hand in my pants. I hadn’t but I wasn’t sure so I said yes. I wasn’t able to take the sacrament for months because of my response. I dealt with months of shame for about 10 seconds of touching in the wrong place. So ridiculous.

Woman:   I was during a “court of love”. It was 8 years ago and I pushed back about why it mattered.  It was dropped.  It also bothered me greatly.

Man:  Me and my then fiancée were asked:

  • Did either of you orgasm?
  • Did you use a condom?
  • What did you do to prevent pregnancy?
  • Did your garments come off?
  • Where were you?
  • What positions where you in?

In the end, I asked if we should film it next time so he could appropriately determine our level of sin. He didn’t find that funny.

What To Do

I can’t believe that any good member, especially a parent, would bury their head in the sand and sit idly by.  These are your kids.  This is our church.  This is not the church of the Apostles.  Nor is it the church of the Bishops and Stake Presidents.  It’s the Church of Jesus Christ.  It’s also the church of its members, the Latter-day Saints.  Jesus has given us, the rank and file member, the right and responsibility to be intimately involved in the governance of His church.  Our Savior called it the Law of Common Consent.

Here are some suggestions.  These practices can only be fixed if we bring them to light.  Talk about them.  DON’T LET YOUR CHILD OR GRANDCHILD BE A VICTIM.

  • Talk to your church friends about the potential interview damage to our children.
  • Talk to your adolescent and grown children.
  • Talk to the local leaders, Relief Society Presidents, EQ Presidents, HP Group Leaders, YM & YW Presidents.
  • Talk to your Bishops and Stake Presidents.

Quid Pro Quo

The church has produced a pamphlet entitled “For The Strength of Youth.”  It is designed to help all members know the standards of the church.

I’m responding with my own pamphlet “For the Protection of Youth.”  It is designed to let all leaders understand the strict license they can take with our children.

For the Protection of Youth

  1. No interviews with minors without the explicit consent of the parents.
  2. No one-on-one interviews behind closed doors. Either a parent is to be in the room or second adult, approved by the parents.
  3. No questions about masturbation…ever!
  4. No questions about orgasm, sexual positions, or any other detailed sexual matters…ever!
  5. No shaming lessons about chewed gum, licked cupcake, etc.
  6. No lessons about violation of chastity being next to murder in gravity.
  7. No lessons intimating that a person is better dead chaste, than alive and unchaste.

Take back and embrace Christ’s gospel of Common Consent.  For the sake of your children.  For the sake of your grandchildren.  For the sake of following the Savior.



400 members have chosen to actively participate in the Law of Common Consent.  I urge you to consider it, too.  Click HERE for the link to the Common Consent Register.

77 thoughts on “Did You Orgasm?

  1. As a married adult woman, I confessed to masturbating a few times per week, without using pornography to get me stimulated or to orgasm. My bishop referred me to a therapist who specialized in sex addicts, because he thought I had a sex addiction. Thankfully, I never went to the therapist because I had enough of a level enough head to know that I am not a sex addict.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Courtney,

      Our bishops are not trained in any type of counseling. There is so much potential for damaging adults and especially children. We should not be in the masturbation or orgasm business. Glad you are so level headed.

      All My Best, Sam


    2. I was in the nondenominational church. When I went to my pastor for marriage and sex counseling because my marriage was failing because my wife still view sex as shameful, he gave me a book about sex addiction. The examples were so explicit and really not applicable. It made me think, is this what my pastor thought of me because I came to him with questions about my marriage? It was inappropriate. I am glad you were strong enough to rebuff the label of sex addict. I had to struggle for a few weeks, then said “hogwash!”

      Liked by 1 person

    3. While when I was LDS, from time to time I had excellent bishops that didn’t pry nor did they care to get details. They were just coaches and encouraging. But they were RARE. I moved a lot around the world… so I’ve seen a variety of leadership. Most have been extremely invasive. I’ve been told also that I was a sex addict and needed to get counseling just because I had a hard time quitting masturbation and that was strange to them because I was female. They are unqualified regardless of how many might be well meaning. It’s not appropriate to be constantly asking teens about their sex life. Or to have to confess every time “slip up” of sexual exploration that’s a normally biological response in any human. There is so much shame and repression in that faith and it needs to start being discussed more opening and honestly.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The bishop is the one asking to see the member, not the other way around. Not only do these private interviews need to stop, they need to stop preaching that normal behavior is a horrific sin. I knew a man who committed suicide because of this and wrote about it on his suicide note.
    The bishop’s idea of ‘help’ is to pass judgement, give punishment and rather than respecting privacy tells what he heard to his counselors and others.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. While I hope my family is totally out of this cult by the time my kids are old enough to be interviewed, I’m saving your suggestions anyway. No preteen child of mine is going to be interviewed behind a closed door with an untrained stranger asking about their sex lives.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m not saying this doesn’t happen, but it’s not in the “hands of the church,” it’s at the hands of someone not properly using the calling they’ve been given. It’s not the church, it’s the misinterpretation of people on the church and those people influencing others.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Sasha,

      I think you are correct that this direction doesn’t come for the handbook. But, it happens. The high church leadership should openly call for it to stop. Since they are remaining silent, it’s up to parents to step up and protect their children. It should be discussed openly so all parents know the dangers and can take the appropriate action.

      It’s exactly like what was happening to our gay youth. They were told to get married to get rid of their gay attractions. This advice is nowhere in the handbooks. The rank and file members were not aware of the counsel being given behind closed doors. The apostles should have openly spoken up and stopped it. They didn’t.

      Thanks so much for your comment & all my best to you, Sam


    2. I love hearing this same argument over and over again for so many different things!

      Whenever someone more selfish than the problem needs to defend something, it’s always “I didn’t do that! Just blame that person!”

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Interesting read. I agree with most points but I can’t agree completely on number 3 and in asking about sex in general. Details etc might not be necessary but a certain level
    Of worthiness has been established and knowing whether someone is participating in sex or masutrbaion is impctful on something like participating
    In Priesthood ordinances. I think the best Thing is for the parents to communicate with the bishop, and get on the same page so these interviews do involve the parents and these bishops aren’t just shooting from the hip and discussing whatever they feel like.. Secrecy give lots of things power that it otherwise wouldn’t have, and if someone is personally feeling guilty about something and their parents aren’t doing their job in being involved and open with the kids then a
    Bishop with a listening ear could be helpful or therapeutic.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. It occurs to me that most LDS people (and especially kids) in this situation will only know to obediently answer. Plus, the interviewer holds a position of authority and can LITERALLY hold their church membership (and thus eternal blessings) in the palm of their hand. To me, this makes this practice abusive and completely out of bounds. It is taking advantage of a position of authority. Seems like a power-trip that can do very lasting harm. I am angered that leaders would use their position of authority to abuse members this way.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Why do we think that another human being would hold OUR eternal blessings in THEIR hands? That is ridiculous! Your eternal blessings are between you and God. And what if we are all blessed with everything our soul desires?

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Oh, and if it were me getting that question, I think I would say, “have an orgasm? Of course I had an orgasm. Isn’t that the point?!?”

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Sam i agree that the general authorities should know about this but i think this is not the right way to let them know. You can write them so they can do something about it. Posting something that everyone can see will only damage those who are offended for everything and are trying to find a reason to leave the church or those who dont have a strong testimony of the church, because they will think this is the Church’s fault and not the fault of those bishops and stake presidents who dont understand their calling

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The idea is that it’s SO prevelant and obviously nothing is being done. So this is the perfect platform to let families know what’s going on. My family sent me to my bishop because I “had to repent” for making choices that made me “not special anymore.. just like everybody else”. Which was misguided to begin with but I set up the meeting to start the “repentance process” by confessing my sins. I explained why I was there and then the probing questions began and I left with a book literally titled the miracle of forgiveness.
      So many people like me have stories and we never told our parent’s. Do you want more kids to go through this just to protect the churc rep? They pay their PR team enough with your tithing to be able to deal with some corrective feedback.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I really don’t believe this. Maybe a Bishop somewhere DID give the man in the story this guidance, but I highly doubt the man in this story had no choice in whom to marry. Further more, I do not believe this is something shared through out the LDS church or that it has anything to do with the Church. It was most likely guidance given by that individual, the Bishop, by his own understanding. I mean, Bishops are just people after all, right?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Marci,

      I know many gay men who were given this counsel. The man in the story served in my ward as a full time missionary for 14 months. At the time, I was the ward mission leader. So, we got to know each other very well. Of course, I didn’t know that he had been counseling with the ward and stake leaders for the past several years. Maybe he’s lying. I can’t imagine that. We still remain very close friends.

      Bishops are just people. That’s why I believe that we need to set limits to what will and won’t be discussed with our children. And that there should be no meetings behind closed doors ALONE with a child. Especially discussing sex.

      Thanks very much for your comment, Sam

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Sometimes society changes and the church actually does make an adjustment in its leadership. As a general rule, the church doesn’t hold a wet finger in the air to see which way the social wind is blowing and make sure it’s in the right place so people like angry bloggers all feel better. Perhaps it’s time for a directional change from the first presidency. We will see.

    Here are a few points I would give to ponder:
    A bishop has to draw a line somewhere. He is a judge in Israel.
    Many people stay in denial about sexual sins. Some take their shame with them into their old age or beyond – never being what they could have in this life when their path to forgiveness and being lifted up by our savior would have been so simple.
    Some of the greatest conversions to Christ happened at a moment where they realized their own guilt or in other words, the law condemned them and they knew it. Examples are the apostle Paul, Enos, Alma the younger and myself.
    Christ infamously said, “Blessed are they that morn” the morning he speaks about here in The Sermon on the Mount is for the morning a man has for his own sins. Jesus wasn’t taking a day off here to give us some pretty poetry.
    If you don’t realize the seriousness of the law and therefore your sins, you won’t morn for your sins.
    If you don’t morn for your sins you are stopped from repenting. The savior then does not lift you and the opportunity for an amazing conversion or profound healing is halted. True sorrow for sins brings that to the soul. And the savior never varies from that which he hath said.
    Frankly, if a homosexual were to come home every day from his homosexual life and sincerely confess his homosexual sins to the lord, the lord would hear him as he said he would the publican who beat his chest and couldn’t lift his head up in the synagogue. As grevious as the sin may be day after day, year after year, the atonement is that powerful. After this life, all sins repented for may be swept away in one stroke.
    Let’s try perhaps not to hurt feelings and creep people out. But on that same note, I would say that a chance to have the would-be sinner feel sorrow for something and take his issue sincerely to the lord is far more valuable than the worry of hurting someone’s feelings.
    If you haven’t got a testimony of the redeeming grace of our savior, this may not yet make sense to you.
    Once again, many people stay in denial or shame for years having missed their opportunity before the lord to be lifted up. I wish it weren’t this way but it usually takes an earthly fellow like a bishop, mission president, parent, spouse or mentor to initiate sorrow.
    We live in a very sensitive world where we can’t speak of the law of God without hurting people’s feelings.
    So who’s going to counsel us?
    And where do we draw the line?

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I didn’t know what a “blowjob” was until my Bishop asked if I’d ever performed one. I was a young woman in Junior High School. At the times, I had no idea what the word “masturbation” meant, either. (Great sex ed in the Utah school systems and it was taboo talk about sex at all.)
    I had another Bishop ask personal questions about sexual relations, and because I had made out with a guy, involving “heavy petting,” which he required every detail, he then insisted I was not worthy of the Sacrament and ordered undertake a very strict repentance. Every
    Sunday, I went to Church feeling filthy and ashamed and to top it off, everyone assumed the worst every time I passed the sacrament without partaking. This went on for months, until the same man, finally called me into his office to tell me he noticed I wasn’t taking the sacrament, like he’d forgotten. I told him I was waiting for him to tell me I was forgiven, and he laughed and said, it was up to God, but he felt like I should take the sacrament again because he thought I’d be better off taking it, than not. This was not only extremely confusing, it was the beginning of the end of my religious beliefs and the last time I was ever seen in that Church.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Some have complained that my recent posts border on pornography. Yet, this is the pornography that is happening to our youth behind the closed doors of bishop’s offices.

      Thanks for your comment, Brooke.


  12. Let’s get one thing straight. Snippets of interviews taken out of context, and absent the presence of the Holy Ghost in which they were conducted, are voyueristic, if not outright pornographic. I will continue to abide by the Handbook of Instructions, thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Robert,

      Thanks for reading my blog and sharing your opinion. I have found that open discussion is very healthy in helping people understand one another.

      As a parent, I would not permit my twelve year old daughter to be taken behind closed doors, all alone, by an older untrained male to be questioned about masturbation. Certainly not about orgasms. The Holy Ghost tells me that this is wrong for my youngsters. If the Holy Ghost tells other parents that it’s good for their children, that’s their business.

      If the Holy Ghost tells a bishop to take my child behind closed doors, all alone, without my knowledge or permission, to talk about masturbation and orgasms, I am NOT okay with that. It contradicts the revelation that I have received for my children.

      So, you want to continue to abide by the Handbook. Nowhere in the handbook are instructions given to discuss masturbation and orgasms with our children. If you believe there is, please share the reference with me. If masturbation and orgasm has been officially added to the manual, it should be officially subtracted.

      I do agree with you in one big way. Based on the narratives people share, many or our youth ARE subjected to voyueristic and pornographic interviews.

      All my best, my friend,



      1. I think we are not showing faith in Jesus Christ. He has called all of these leaders by prophecy, and by the laying on of hands. He directs this work. He has prophets and apostles administer this work. When we undertake to murmur against the brethren, and attempt to steady the Ark ourselves, we have already started down the path of personal apostasy. If we see something we don’t feel is right, we are to bring it to the attention of the presiding authority, and then leave it in the hands of the Lord. Not post it all over the internet where it can bring shame and embarrassment upon the Church.

        Liked by 1 person

  13. Hi Robert,

    Thanks again for a great comment. Here are a couple of my thoughts.

    1) “It can bring shame and embarrassment upon the church.” Amen brother. And that’s a huge problem. We should be embarrassed by this practice. It is embarrassing. We should be ashamed of ourselves for letting this continue.

    2) I am showing faith in Jesus Christ. Several revelations are recorded in the D&C stating that “All things must be done by common consent in the church.” These interviews are not being done by common consent. In fact, many members have no idea what their children are being subjected to. I have faith in Jesus. As a result, I am going to live the Law that Jesus revealed as a huge part of the restoration. If someone is not willing to live by common consent, I would question whether they have faith in Christ.

    3) I am not murmuring against the brethren. I think that they are fine men. I’m am criticizing a practice. Actually, I have no idea what the apostles’ view is on masturbation interviews. They have never spoken in the open about them. I have asked my stake president and bishop if probing sexual questions are being asked of our youth. They didn’t answer my question. If we can’t openly speak about church procedures, something is very out of whack. Now, as for criticizing the leadership of the church. Are you a proponent of following that example of Christ? I certainly am. A huge part of his example was calling out the highest ranks of church leadership in very strong terms. I haven’t done that. Perhaps, I should if I truly desire to follow Christ’s example. But, this is only speculation, because at this time I’m only calling out the practices. Not doctrine. Not the leadership. Only practices. I don’t even know if they are policy.

    4) The welfare of our children is in the balance. No way am I going to wait 40 years for a bad practice to finally be excised from the church. My kids and grandkids will all be grown and gone by then. The damage with have already occurred. And I’ll be six feet under.

    Thanks again for your perspective.


  14. So… masturbation is a sin. It is immoral and against the gospel of Jesus Christ and therefore His church. I feel it is totally appropriate for Bishops to question whether youth are masturbating. What are you trying to protect- the sins of your children?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Kellee,

      If you feel it’s OK for your 12 year old daughter to be taken behind a closed door, all alone, by an older untrained man to be asked if she touches herself down there, without your permission or knowledge….well that’s fine with me. My children are grown now. But, if they weren’t I would protect them from the dangers of being alone with a man with probing questions about her sexual practices. So, yes I would protect my child.

      I served as a bishop for 5 years. Never once did I ask a child if he/she masturbated. In never entered my mind to do so. I was never given instructions to do it. The idea would have repulsed me. That is a private matter that an untrained man should not be sticking his nose in. I have no idea where this practice started. It is certainly not in the handbooks.

      Just a couple of months ago, I found out something that highly disappoints me. Fourteen years ago, my 12 year old daughter was asked by the bishop if she masturbated. She had never heard the word. By the tone in the bishop’s voice, it sounded bad, so my daughter answered with a NO. She then asked her friends what it meant. They didn’t know. So she looked it up on the internet. Well, guess what happens when you do that. Up popped pornography. I asked how often during her teenage years she was confronted by the bishop about masturbation. “All the time.” That is NOT okay with me. As the parent, I should have been notified of what was happening behind closed doors with my daughter all alone with an older man. I would not have permitted it to continue.

      Again, I respect your opinion about your children, closed doors, and sexual questions. You know what’s best for your family. I know what’s best for mine.

      Thanks for reading my blog and participating in the discussion.

      All My Best, Sam


  15. I myself have never had this happen to me. These questions and the prying are not condoned by the Church leaders, these are not things they are told to ask. If these things happen they need to be reported to Stake leaders and possibly the police. If the Stake doesn’t respond then take it to the Elders. I agree that minors should have parents go in with them. It is sad that men choose to do these things to others; we are given callings to help us grow and be humbled, to make us better. But, it’s sad when they abuse their positions. I’m reminded that men are not perfect even in the Church and that we are all that God has to work with; we’re all just striving to get back to him. I do believe the Atonement works, it works when we make bad decisions and when others do bad things to us.


  16. I’m an active member of the church. I am very open and honest with my daughter. We’ve talked about sex and the law of chastity and everything involved.
    I will be telling our Bishop that he can ask her if she’s living the Law of Chastity. She knows what that means. Whether she says yes or no, he needs no further details. If she says no, he can counsel her to repent and explain how the Atonement is there for her. He can meet with her to encourage her, but he need not ask details.
    She already knows what is sexual behavior and that there are varying degrees of it.

    For the record, I’ve been very lucky in the Bishops I’ve met with.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are good parent. Would that all parents were as wise and protective as you, Lee. Would that all bishops were as accommodating as yours to the wishes of the parents. Thanks for sharing and setting a shining example.


  17. These stories contInue to shock, but not surprise, me. My ex and I have come to an agreement where we will not allow leaders to do these kinds of interviews with our kids (wish I had had this presented to me for my oldest three, I cringe to think what they may have been subjected to! ). And I have talked to my kids and am trying to empower them to also stand up for themselves–“I don’t feel comfortable answering that, so I won’t.” “I don’t want to have an interview without my parents present. Please call them to schedule. ”

    I want to say thank you to the woman in this post who gave me the word I have been searchIng for to describe this practice. “Voyeuristic”. Indeed. Disgustingly so. (Also the word used by one of the men–“prurient”–is spot on.

    Thank you so much for all of this Sam. I’ve not met you (yet), but I adore you and the work you are doing.


    1. Oh my Kerri. There are times of discouragement when comments like yours are really needed. Tonight is one of those times. Thank You!!!


  18. Hi, Sam,

    I just read this post and the replies for the first time. I like what you are doing to raise awareness of harmful interview practices, regardless of why it happens.

    I will confess that my BS detector was triggered by the following statement:

    “This is our church. This is not the church of the Apostles. Nor is it the church of the Bishops and Stake Presidents. It’s the Church of Jesus Christ. It’s also the church of its members, the Latter-day Saints. Jesus has given us, the rank and file member, the right and responsibility to be intimately involved in the governance of His church. Our Savior called it the Law of Common Consent.”

    === end of quote ===

    The name of the Church is not a statement of who owns the Church. The owner of the Church is the CORPORATION OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST OF LATTER-DAY SAINTS (spelled in ALL CAPS) which is a Corp Sole currently held by Thomas S. Monson. He owns the Church. Here is the link to the Utah Business Registry.


    Joseph Smith wrote most of the Doctrine and Covenants himself (just like he wrote most of the Book of Mormon, with the exception of excerpts copied verbatim from the KJV Bible). All of the GodSpeak in the D&C was Joseph’s creative writing intended to manipulate and deceive others in support his personal goals and agenda. He also modified numerous “revelations” published in the original Book of Commandments that he later found too limiting … so he just changed the Word of God to suit himself. In the exerpt above, you are actually quoting the Word of Joseph Smith, not the Word of Jesus Christ.

    I am delighted you got to meet Mike Norton recently. I completely enjoyed Mike’s accuracy in labeling all things LDS with correct and truthful labels. For example, Mike came right out and stated that Joseph Smith was a pathological liar, charlatan, swindler and con artist. Mike would agree that Jesus Christ had nothing whatsoever to do with the ingenious swindle that persists today.

    In my opinion, Sam, you are virtually (if not literally) defaming Jesus Christ to associate His name with anything to do with The Brethren and their Mind Control Cult.

    Defamation. Libel if written. Slander if spoken.

    One important ingredient in the art of successful problem solving is to correctly and accurately label the problem and its components. When you mislabel things, the result is confusion and obfuscation and ineffective problem solving.

    Although I love and respect you as a human being, Sam, and although much of your problem-solving skillset is just plain excellent, I have to give you a D grade on correctly labeling the problem. (If I did not love you personally, I confess I might give you an F on “problem ROOT CAUSE identification and labeling.”) You do get an A for problem SYMPTOM identification and labeling, so please, please don’t feel bad.

    An example will speak volumes. You sometimes refer to The Brethren as something like good and decent men (paraphrasing). Sorry, Sam. That is seriously false labeling. Ask Mike if he thinks The Brethren are good and decent men. Mike has these characters sized up and accurately labeled. I hope you noticed what Mike said he would like to do to Dallin Oaks if they were to meet on the sidewalk. (Hint: Mike would have to marshal some serious self-control to restrain himself from physically assaulting Elder Oaks because of how closely Elder Oaks approximates a good and decent man.)

    Sam, you wrote this blog back in July, I think. Maybe you would write it differently today. Maybe you would describe The Brethren differently. Maybe not. My point is that you genuinely confuse people (and maybe confuse yourself) when you mislabel the root cause of the problem by calling Egregiously Predatory Monsters
    — whose lips and pens cause innocent and beautiful human beings to take their own lives — as “good and decent men” or whatever words you have chosen.

    And for heaven’s sake (literally?) please consider whether you are defaming Jesus Christ to associate His name with The Brethren today or with founder Joseph’s Myth.

    Although I truly do love you, Sam, as my long-lost brother, now found, I am administering a slap to the side of your head and firmly informing you that your ROOT CAUSE labeling needs some work. (Your SYMPTOM labeling knocks it out of the park, so, again, please give yourself credit where credit is due.)

    If you would like someone else’s perspective on this, my guess is that Mike Norton would be happy to weigh in. You have his phone number. Call him up and compare labels.

    PS – The Brethren are in a special class of their own. I totally believe that the Mormon Church is filled with good and decent men, women, children and babies. To the extent any of these are TBMs, they have been deceived and swindled. By whom? The buck stops with The Brethren. They have gallons of blood on their hands. Other than that, don’t they sound so nice and kind and civilized from their General Conference pulpit?

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Sam,
    Thank you for being willing to stand up and fight for so many who don’t feel they have a voice. Thank you for hopefully putting a stop to such a damaging practice and for protecting our youth from years of possible damage and shame. I too was asked many of the same questions by 2 different bishops. I was handed a quote that talked about virtue being worth more than your life. I went into my marriage with a very unhealthy view about sex and it has taken me years to overcome the guilt and shame. Some days I still have those feelings at the surface. I have since left the church, as has most my family, and I feel closer to God and I’m happier then ever. Not only are the interviews so damaging for our children, but the way sex is talked about, or not talked about, is just as damaging. Thank you for taking a stand. The world needs more men like you. You are making a difference. Thank you!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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