Thursday, September 30, 2010

Social Pressure = Suicide

There are many things from my past that sometimes I wish I could leave in the past, but history is renowned for repeating itself. Reading the article about the US man who jumped off a bridge because he had been outed on the internet by some bullies who were having a laugh, brought back sober memories. I remember a time when I was young, a young adult neighbour committed suicide because the monogamous family that he was raised in could not accept any other way but their own. It was a terrible experience. It seemed like he tried to make a statement with his death, and hanged himself from the chandelier right in front of the front door of his parent's house. When his mother came home from work, he was the first thing that she saw upon opening the door. We lived almost directly across the street and could see into his house when his front door was open, an almost direct line of sight to where he was hanging. It was a terrible, tragic loss. There have been many good children, young adults, and adults lost to suicide, all because of the nasty social stigma against their polygamist beliefs. It is my hope that someday society will accept the innocent, harmless feelings of others, even the minorities, and will not treat them as criminal just for the sake of following their hearts.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

The Approaching Winter

This morning we awoke to a thick layer of frost and icy puddles. As I gazed upon the silvery grass, my thoughts were drawn to the forthcoming winter season. Winter is by far my favorite time of year. I know others prefer the warmer months, but I prefer to bundle up outside than bake in the sun. There’s no mosquitoes, no heatstroke, and especially, no rain! Rain makes everything wet and muddy and everything seems so mucky and depressing, while snow makes everything seem so clean and pure. (I realize that it is just an illusion and that come spring, the snow will melt and make a big mess, which is why I am not a fan of spring.)

I love curling up in front of a roaring fire, and the smell of wood smoke in the air. I love walking along an unbroken trail in my snowshoes and seeing all of the fresh animal tracks. I love playing outside in the snow with the kids, building snowmen and snow forts, then coming inside and sharing some hot chocolate with marshmallows by the fireplace.

I realize that the frost is just teasing me and that I still have 2 more months of fall to go, but it is nice to dream.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

'Big Love'

Some people argue against polygamy because they claim that if you divide your love then you will love each person less, but this is ridiculous. It is like saying that if you have more than one child, you will love each child less, which of course is not true. In fact, I believe the opposite is true; the more children you have, the greater your capacity to love. And I believe the same goes for multiple spouses. I yearn for the day when JR has several wives and the cup of our family’s love will ‘runneth over’.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

To Court or Not To Court

Last night we watched “7 Brides For 7 Brothers”. I am not a big fan of that type of singing, but it is a nice story. I believe that we can meet, fall in love, and marry, all in one day, even in one instant. (As you may already have surmised, I believe marriage is a state of mind, or rather soul, and not a government sponsored institution.) The first time I met JR, I knew he was something special, and he felt the same about me. I often wish that we had married that day instead of wasting 6 months doing the “socially acceptable” courtship.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Reflections of Ourselves

We have an 18 month old little boy who is at that state where he is copying everything he sees. We have started teaching him sign language because at his age it is easier for him to tell us what he wants using his hands rather than his words. I am utterly amazed at how quickly he learns, and he remembers. The other day he got into a box of DVDs ( something he is not supposed to be doing), got a DVD out of it’s case, took it over to my computer, pushed the button to open the cd drive, put the disk in and pushed it closed. I rarely use the cd drive on my computer, and yet he figured it out. Needless to say, I kept a closer eye on him after that.

The more I see him copying our behavior, the more I realize how much our children are reflections of ourselves. Sure they may develop their own personalities, but they draw the base of that personality from the environment and people they grow up with. Being a parent is an awesome responsibility, but it is also a great blessing and one that I am grateful for everyday.

I must admit that I do not often write poetry, but as I pondered the thoughts expressed above, I felt inspired to write the following.

As I gaze upon my mirror
That sits there on the shelf,
I see gazing back at me
A reflection of myself.

As I gaze upon my child
While he plays there on the floor,
I realize that this sweet boy
Reflects me even more.

The love I show him is returned,
My actions copied too.
For in the life of this my child,
My reflection is more true.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

An Unexpected Blessing

Sometimes, when you think things are not going your way, they turn around and you are blessed with more than you can imagine.

Last year we rescued a greyhound cross and she became a cherished member of our family. She is the sweetest girl in the world and it is hard to imagine that someone did not want her. She managed to get herself bred and now we have 10 puppies! It has been a great experience watching the children interact with the puppies. They are learning so much. They are learning responsibility and to see the results of their actions. They are able to recognize the differences in the puppies' personalities and how each personality needs to treated in it's own special way. What we thought was going to be a difficult situation has turned into a great blessing.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Peace At Last

Living free is wonderful! I am now free to live without stress and pursue my own goals for my family. JR and I have dreamed of owning our own business so neither of us has to go away to work, but unfortunately, we are not to that point just yet. For now though I am enjoying my adventures in the business world and JR stays home with the children and runs the farm. I am hoping to move into a different field soon though. If all goes as planned, I will be working in a veterinarian’s office, which is great, I love animals. It is so nice not to be limited by stereotypes where the woman has to stay home and the man has to go out and work. I am also excited about the prospect of going back to university and pursuing my dream of being an accountant.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

I Have A Dream

Last night I had the most wonderful dream. I dreamt that the “Monogomists” no longer ran the country. Everyone was free to live openly without fear of persecution. We were free to fall in love and marry, without being bound by hypocritical rules enforced by a hypocritical society. Children were not ostracized because of their family structure. Families could all go to town together without anyone passing judgment. We were free to worship the God we believed in without any interference from the government.

Oh, what a wonderful world it would be! Now all I have to do is work to make my dream a reality.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Into The Light

Establishing a home in the mountains was not easy, but it is very rewarding. We have friends who believe in the same things we do, and more importantly, we are free to live how we want to live. Our children can now live free and they have friends who also believe that all people should be free to live according to the dictates of their own consciences.

We see the influence of God everywhere in our lives and experience the awesomeness of His power. I would like to share another experience where the power of God is manifest here on Earth. The water for our little farm is provided by a shallow well. 2 years ago, when all the snow was melting in the spring, the water started to smell bad, then it started to taste bad and we could no longer use it for drinking or cooking. Some rats had gotten into the well and drowned and were rotting and poisoning the water. We could still use the water for the animals, but it was not safe for us to drink, so we had to start hauling our water from somewhere else. We cleaned up anything we thought may be contaminating the water, but it stayed bad. JR went out to the well with some salt and performed a cleansing ordinance, just like Elisha (2 Kings 2:19-22). The water immediately improved, but still had a faint odour. JR went back out to the well but this time he took the older children with him. He told them the story of Elisha purifying the water had them witness as he performed the cleansing ordinance again. The water was immediately purified and was safe to drink and tasted good from that day forward (and to this day). We even sent a sample of the water to a laboratory to be tested, and it passed with flying colours. To see JR exercise the power of God is one of the greatest blessings in my life.

While it is still just JR & I, we have a deep longing to bring more wives into our family and have our family grow. I see the incredible love that my friends who practice this principle have and I desperately want this for my family. We have been patiently waiting for many years to meet someone who wants the same thing and I have finally found a friend who wants to join our family. I do not want to go into too many details out of respect for her privacy, but I am very happy to say that she and JR are engaged and we are working on the wedding plans.

Friday, September 10, 2010

A Spark of Light

One thing that really bothered me about this “monogamous” church, was that they claimed to have the power of God, but that no miracles ever happened now, or to people I knew. Miracles were something that always happened to someone else or they were something that used to happen in the early church, but they don’t happen now. (Looking back I find this very humorous, because it was in the early church that they practiced polygamy and other fundamentals of the gospel that have been taken from the modern church, so by their own mouths they are condemning themselves.) How could I believe in a God that was inconsistent and a respecter of persons, if miracles were possible then, then they have to be possible now. After I met JR, I learned that miracles did happen now, and you didn’t even have to be a prophet or church leader for God to show his love to you.

The first miracle I experienced with JR, I did not believe, I was so brainwashed by my “monogamous” church that I thought he was just telling stories. When he told me that he had seen me in a dream, I thought it was just a pick-up line. Boy, was I wrong. JR and I have experienced many miracles over the years, things that cannot be written off as coincidence, or just our imaginations.

I would like share one such experience now, and I will share more over time. After JR and I were engaged, we were sitting on a grassy hill staring up at the stars. As I stared up at they sky the scene changed and as I watched I saw God standing beside JR on a thick layer of cloud. I saw myself standing off to the side a little ways away. God stretched out his arm toward me and spoke to JR. He told JR to take care of me and to bring me home. This was the extent of the vision, and at first I thought it was just a lovely imagination of my heart, until I started to tell JR about it and he stopped me. He proceeded to describe to me my vision, exactly as I had seen it, he even pointed out details that I hadn’t really noticed but could remember once he said them. He had seen the exact same vision, just as I had seen it. There was absolutely no doubt that this vision was from God and that we were foreordained to be together.

Unfortunately, when I tried to tell anyone else in my “monogamous” church about our vision, I was either disbelieved and laughed at or told that I was evil for claiming such a blessing when I had no right. Alternately, when I told people outside my church, they thought it was a wonderful experience and were happy for me. I was beginning to see that maybe my elitist church wasn’t all it claimed to be. By following the elitist propaganda of this church I was actually limiting my ability to be the best possible me I could be. As time went on, and I saw all of the chains that my church had wrapped around me, I started to yearn for freedom, freedom to raise my family in a way that would allow them to make the best possible choices they could. JR and I knew that in order to gain the freedom we were looking for, we would have to break away from this “monogamous” church and it’s members, leaving behind the elitist doctrine that only members of this church were acceptable to God and how everyone else was going to hell. We gathered our children, packed up a few belongings and left for the west. It had long been our dream to live in the mountains, to find a little piece of heaven where we would be left alone to be free to live how we thought was best. Others had found peace in the mountains and we were hoping to find the same.

Once the decision had been made to seek freedom, it felt as though a great weight had been lifted from my heart. I no longer had to worry if I had the right clothes to wear to church, or censor every word that came out of my mouth for fear that my desire to live the fundamentals of the gospel would come out. I am now open about the fact that I am looking for more wives for my husband. I am free to be who I want to be and I am happy!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Beginning To See

After JR and I were married, we still faced many challenges. Although I was open to the idea of polygamy, I was still afraid of my “monogamous” church. I wanted JR to have more wives, but I thought it may just have to wait for the next life. Unfortunately, I allowed some excellent opportunities to pass me by out of fear of persecution from my family and the church. One such memory still brings great pains of sorrow to my heart. One of my younger sisters was having some trouble with my family and came to stay with us for a week. She was expressing her desire to live a higher standard than her “monogamous” church allowed. Here was a perfect opportunity for me to tell her that I felt the same, and to ask her if she was interested in staying and being part of our family, but I still couldn’t let go of the way I had been brainwashed as a child that if I went against the church I would go to hell, so I said nothing. My sister went on to eventually leave the church anyway, shack up with one guy, then marry someone else, which ended in divorce. She is now engaged to a very nice Muslim man, and while he does not have any other wives, his religion allows it and it still could be in her future. She has had some very hard times in her life and when I think of her all I can think of is how I could have spared her all of those sorrows if I had just let go of my fear of my “monogamous” church.

As time went on, and as JR and I saw more and more of the hypocrisies of the “monogamous” church and its leaders, I slowly started overcoming my fear and started standing up for my freedom to choose and make my own decisions for the welfare and safety of my children. We love spending time with our children and most of the time we would only go to church activities that allowed us to bring our children with us. At church we would keep our children with us and taught them to be well behaved and respectful at all times. We started to be ostracized by church members because we refused to follow their traditions of putting their church before the chastity of their children. The members called us evil because we did not want our children to be taken away and molested like I and so many other children had been at the hands of this “monogamous” church.

Thoughts of freedom for my family were often in my mind and I finally decided to put my family and my God before the church. I wanted my children to be free to live as they felt was the best, and if I followed the rules of the “monogamous” church, they might never find that freedom. I told JR that I wanted to live according to the dictates of our consciences and to do what we thought was right.

By now we had met many other fundamentalists and I had learned that everything the “monogamous” church had told me about them had been a lie. They were normal people just trying their best to live the way that God wanted them to. I saw so much love and kindness that I desperately wanted the same for my family.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

The Pains of Change

Being raised in a religion with polygamist roots, I was taught that there would be polygamy in heaven, but that it was not allowed here on earth. But in the same breath, I was taught that those that lived the fundamental principles (like polygamy) of my religion were all evil people. I was taught by my leaders that fundamentalists were all cultists who brainwashed their women and traded spouses like baseball cards. I was taught that little girls were constantly molested and that all anyone cared about was sex, but how was this different from how I was raised in my “monogamous” religion? It was quite the irony, but unfortunately, I did not see it and blindly believed my leaders.

Then I met JR and everything changed …

From the first moment I met JR I knew there was something special about him. It’s true I did not believe his line about seeing me in a dream, I had been told that one before, but after talking to him for a few minutes, I did not want it to end. My friends were ready and I had to go, so I asked him for his address and asked if it would be okay if I wrote him a letter. He said sure and gave me his address. Then he did something that completely surprised me, he asked me for my address, he was actually interested in me too; I was thrilled!

JR was different from anyone I had ever met in my life. When he made mistakes, he would confess them and own up to them and try to fix the damage that he had caused. This was completely different than what I had been taught in my “monogamous” church, from my observations, all you had to do was pretend to be sad and maybe stop doing it, or at least stop getting caught. JR’s way seemed a lot better and I started questioning some of the other dubious doctrines taught by my “monogamous” church.

JR and I started dating and discussed the difference between the gospel and the church often, and we were beginning to see that the gospel and what the “monogamous” church leaders taught did not match up. We could see that one of the greatest blessings of the gospel was plural marriage and here was the church telling us that it would be practiced in heaven, but those who practiced it on earth were going to hell. Before we married, JR asked me how many wives I would let him have. Despite all the prejudices taught me by my “monogamous” church, I answered that he could have as many wives as he would like. This was the beginning of my Escape To Polygamy.

I am a daddy again!!!!

Yeah! I would like to announce that my beloved bride and I have recently had a new addition to the family. It is so great to look into those bright eyes and have the new little fella reach up and grab my finger with his tiny hands. Toni decided that we would have the child in a family birthing room this time, so that anyone who wanted to could witness the birth. It is amazing that hospitals these days have family birthing rooms, and that they make accommodations for several people being in the room at the same time. Well a few of the older children were able to watch the birth, even though they really could not see much. It was a great experience all around. Toni is great, she has recovered quickly. She is one of those women who can pace back and forth almost right up until the transitional stage, then squat down and, within five minutes, have the child. It is truly amazing!

Even though my mother arrived at our house a few weeks after the birth, we had an enjoyable visit. I have long since forgiven my mother for the terrible sexual and physical abuses that she inflicted on me as a child, yet when I picked her up at the airport several horrific memories flashed through my mind. Of course I have long forgiven her, and I did not intentionally bring up those old memories, but those memories certainly caught me off guard. On the inside I cringed with terror, as if I were five years old again, but I welcomed her with a hug. Since her children are all grown, she no longer has the ability to harm them anymore, but she is often supervised and not left alone with the younger children. She still has a very strong attachment to her vile "monogamous" church and upbringing, and continually preaches that we must repent and become "holy" like her, and follow her heinous customs of accepting pedophilia as a socially acceptable norm.

I prayed often during her visit to banish all those terrible memories and the feelings that accompanied them, and sought earnestly to build every loving and caring emotion that I could for her. After all, she is my mother, and even though the effects of her abuse will long be with me, I do forgive her. I will just never return to her religion or her customs. Hopefully some day she will realize that child abuse is wrong, no matter how socially acceptable it becomes. Then perhaps that day she will leave that "monogamous" church and follow the gospel of Christ.

As all my ardent readers know, I have always used the term "monogamous" (in quotes) to denote the hypocritical people and organizations who claim monogamy, but are secretly living lives of sexual perversity. The term "monogamous" (in quotes) does not refer to a monogamous (without quotes) living arrangement, where there is only one sexual partner. I have a great deal of respect for those who follow a truly monogamous lifestyle. In fact, I do enjoy the motto, live and let live, but not to the allowance of the criminal behaviour of child abuse. Each person involved must be of age, and fully capable of making their own consensual decision.

Wow, I get off topic fast!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Stumbling Around

JR did not want to go into too much detail about the abuses I suffered as a child at the hands of my family and members of my “monogamous” church, but I would like to share some of my stories to illustrate the horrors of my “monogamous” upbringing.

It started when I was very young, my parents were very active in their church callings and in their worldly pursuits so I was often left alone to take care of myself. Even though we lived in a big fancy house, this house was located in a lower class neighbourhood. Our next door neighbours had a little girl my age (I was around 6 at the time) and I was often sent over there to play with her. Unfortunately, they also had several sons, two of which were 12 and 14 years old. These two boys would take their sister and me into the nearby woods and have sex with us. I knew what they were doing was wrong but I was scared of them. I was scared to tell anyone for fear of what they would do to me. I would beg my mother to let me stay home but she just kept sending me over there to get me out of her hair. It got to the point where I felt so bad that I could not sleep at night, I would just lay there and cry. I finally got up the courage to tell my mother about it and all she did was say “there, there” and sent me back to bed. She didn’t even tell my father about it, so much for their perfect “monogamous” relationship. Finally the little neighbour girl burned down the house and they moved away, but not until after my parents invited the whole family to live in our house for 2 weeks while they found a new place to live. My “monogamous” parents put their appearance of charity above the safety of their own daughters! They traded their daughter’s chastity for the “payment” of looking good in front of their church.

Many other sexual abuses took place right in our church buildings and at church activities. One time, after the meetings were finished, I was left alone while my parents took care of their church responsibilities. One of my older brother’s friends took me into an empty classroom and molested me. This boy was supposedly an honorable priesthood holder. My own brother, who was also supposedly an honorable priesthood holder, invited this same boy over to out house to molest me. He pimped me out to his friend. This boy sat me on his lap in our own living room and molested me right in front of my family, my own father just sat there and allowed it to happen right in front of his eyes! And nobody stopped him when he took me into the bathroom alone to continue what he was doing. I finally got away from him but who was I supposed to tell, my parents? They were right there watching it happen! The church leaders? This boy’s father was one of them! I was even molested by a temple going member of this “monogamous” church, during church sponsored activities. And I found out I was not the only one that this was happening to.

I began to believe that this was normal and that since my “monogamous” church was telling me that they were better than everyone else, (especially better than those fundamentalists, who supposedly had strayed from the true gospel and were all cultists), that everyone else must be much worse. I was taught by my “monogamous” church not to question and that everything that happened to me was according to the will of God. I was supposed to believe that God wanted to molest me, that he enjoyed seeing his monogamous priesthood holders have sex with me and the other little girls. I was not sure that I wanted to follow this God, but I tried to be a good girl and do what the leaders told me to do.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Born In Darkness

Hello, I am Toni, JRNorth's first wife. I have decided to join JR on this blog to share some of my stories of the horrors of "monogamy". As JR has previously mentioned, I was raised in an elitist religion where I was taught that I was better than everyone else and that only members of my church were going to go to heaven, even though members of my "monogamous" church and even members of my own family were doing unspeakably evil things to me and to others around me. I thought that people of other religions must have been so very evil if they were worse than those in my "monogamous" church. I can remember being taught that other religions were bad because they could sin and then have to perform penance, but in my own church they did not even require that, none of those who molested me ever came and apologized or tried to repent of any of their crimes against me, not even my own family.

Several of the other girls who I grew up with were having the same things happen to them and I grew to learn that this type of abuse was extremely common in this "monogamous" religion. This is the story of my Escape To Polygamy.


I just couldn't let it pass, but need to let everyone know that my beloved has found a wonderful friend and has asked me to accept her friend to be one of my wives. So I am now engaged.

Welcome Back

It has been a very long time since I have posted. There has been much going on and I will get to posting many updates. I am currently trying to figure out how to add another poster here. If anyone knows how, please let me know.