Category Archives: BYU

Dear AMG: My marriage-obsessed BYU roommates are driving me nuts. Help?

Last October, I received a query from “HK” who was getting cold feet about her recent decision to attend BYU-Idaho.  “I’m afraid the push towards conformity will be too much to take,” HK wrote.   I encouraged HK to study her own mind and urged her to envision some alternatives for herself.  BYU-I might in fact be a good experience, I wrote, but no one should choose a college by default.

Well, few weeks ago, another letter from HK arrived in the AMG mailbox.  Here it is:

Dear AMG:

 I did end up going to BYU-Idaho, and my roommates talk about marriage ALL.THE.TIME. I hear the word marriage about 10 million times a day; on campus, and everywhere. I am taking a marriage class because I want to learn some of the good things that can increase the chance of having a good marriage, but I am not obssessed with the idea, nor do I want to be. I am trying SO HARD to live my life and progress without living in that mindset of needing a man. How can I ignore everyone around me thinking like that? It makes me feel very negative. I am starting to be constantly annoyed, and I can’t live like that. What can I do?

HK

Dear HK:

Last time you wrote, a loyal AMG reader sent in the following comment:

“HK, if you follow Ask Mormon Girl and you’re not even in college yet, I don’t think you’re going to love BYU-I. You are obviously really smart and this is a priceless opportunity to love, love, love college. If you’re willing to be a little different because you’re Mormon, I think it’s time to apply to Smith or Yale or UCLA. Keep us posted because we know you have a big bright future.”

And you know what?  She was 100% right.  I really should have been firmer with you, HK. I shouldn’t have kindly suggested that you consider other alternatives.  I should have written in ALL CAPS.  Because over the course of our epistolary relationship, HK, I’m learning that you’re an ALL CAPS kind of gal.  So here is my ALL CAPS message to you.

REXBURG, IDAHO IS NO PLACE FOR YOU.  DROP YOUR MARRIAGE CLASS.  PACK YOUR BAGS.  AND START LOOKING FOR A NEW SCHOOL.

(Exhale.  Sorry, readers: I know this is hard on the eyes, but I can’t get through to HK without it.)

YOU MUST STOP LETTING OTHER PEOPLE MAKE YOUR CHOICES FOR YOU AND THEN KVETCHING ABOUT THE OUTCOMES.

YOU MUST MAKE YOUR OWN DECISIONS AND TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THEM.

(Phew.  Okay.  Just a few lines more.)

YOU ARE DIFFERENT. OTHER PEOPLE’S ANSWERS ARE NOT GOING TO WORK FOR YOU. NEVER.  EVER. EVER.

ARE YOU GOING TO SPEND THIS ONE BEAUTIFUL LIFE OF YOURS EATING BAD PIZZA AND WATCHING RENTAL VIDEOS IN SNOWBOUND IDAHO APARTMENTS WITH LADIES WAITING ON PRINCE CHARMING?

OR ARE YOU GOING TO STOP WAITING AND BUST YOURSELF OUT OF REXBURG?

(Big finish here, readers.  Almost done.)

TO QUOTE A FAMOUS NUN (WHO OBVIOUSLY KNEW SOMETHING ABOUT LIVING WITHOUT THE MINDSET OF NEEDING A MAN) :  CLIMB EVERY MOUNTAIN.  FORD EVERY STREAM.  FOLLOW EVERY RAINBOW.  TIL. YOU. FIND. YOUR. DREAM.

OR DIE UNSATISFIED.

LOVE YOU.

LATHER, RINSE, REREAD.

PEACE OUT.

Send your query to askmormongirl@gmail.com.  Follow askmormongirl on Twitter.  Friend Joanna Brooks on Facebook.  Or do none of the above. 

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Filed under BYU, young women

I’m supposed to go to BYU-Idaho this January, but I’m getting cold feet. Help?

I am planning to go to BYU-Idaho in January, or was until I realized that not only will I be going to church every Sunday with perfect strangers but also going to devotional, taking religion classes, and going to family home evening EVERY WEEK.  It will be hard…but for me, maybe even impossible. I like the good social gathering just as much as the next gal, but I’m afraid the push toward conformity will be too much to take. I feel stupid for thinking of changing my plans now, since the whole decision to go to BYU-I has been one of much thought, and prayer. It’s taken time for me to get here; how can I make a decision to go somewhere else so fast?! I want to go to a college where I will fit in and feel at home, grow spiritually and socially, and excel academically. I don’t think I should have to worry about changing who I am. Please help me find a happy middle ground where I will feel I fit in by being just who I am, and don’t have to change a thing.

HK

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Filed under BYU, young women

How can I survive as a liberal at BYU?

Dear AMG:

I am a member of the church who has lived outside of Utah for the past 10 years. I attended two very liberal universities in my time away (University of Washington and Northern Arizona University), and developed very strong liberal ideologies. I have returned to Utah, and am now a graduate student at BYU.  Outside of Utah I found I was able to reconcile my political views with my church membership just fine. But the longer I am here in “happy valley,” the more I feel that this church does not define me. While I am consciously aware that it is Mormon culture, and not the gospel, that I find so annoying, I am having an increasingly difficult time separating the two. Now that I am at BYU, the discomfort is increasing, and my desire to stage my own private rebellion and discontinue my activity in the church is powerful.  My frustration is affecting my husband, and I do have children who attend church. If I make the decision to be less active it affects them deeply.  I’d be thrilled to learn whatever survival strategy you have for attending BYU as a liberal democrat. As you know, I do need an ecclesiastical endorsement.

Sincerely,

Bad Grad

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16 Comments

Filed under academics, BYU, faith transition, liberals

What to do with BYU player haters talking anti-Mormon smack?

This week, Ask Mormon Girl takes a foray into the wild world of sports.

Perhaps you’ve heard about the unruly behavior San Diego State University Aztec basketball fans directed at Brigham Young University on Saturday, January 23, when a few dozen SDSU fans dressed up as LDS missionaries (complete with name tags and bike helmets), held signs taunting illness-stricken BYU guard Jimmer Fredette (“Jimmer, which one of your wives gave you mono?”), and compensated for their 71-69 loss by chanting “You’re still Mormon!” at departing BYU players and fans.

The episode caught national attention when Sports Illustrated’s Seth Davis called the Aztec fan behavior “classless.”  Two days later, the Deseret News picked up the story, and the following letter appeared in the askmormongirl@gmail.com inbox:

Dear Mormon Girl:

Don’t you live in San Diego?  Don’t you work at San Diego State University?  Can’t you control your people???!!!

Signed,

J. D.

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Filed under anti-Mormon, BYU, hate speech, sports