Tuesday, January 18, 2011

I am a Mormon. Do you know any Mormons? We are seen by many as shiny happy people who find joy in God, family, and the simple things in life. But, before we go any further you must enter the happy zone with me by watching this video in it's entirety. Yes you have to.

Okay, now that you are Shiny and Happy (you're smiling aren't you? I know, you can't help it), let's proceed. For the most part Mormons are very happy. I know I am. Despite my depression I have a great deal of direction, peace, hope, and well...shine.  My friend Nancy introduced me to the article "Why I can't stop reading Mormon housewife blogs"  about a young feminist atheist who is addicted to reading blogs authored by Mormon women (I'm addicted too I confess). I found it quite amusing...

In her article she says (I suggest you read the whole article),

"Yep, Naomi and Stacie and Stephanie and Liz are Mormons. They're members of a large, close-knit network of Mormon lifestyle bloggers -- young stay-at-home-moms who blog about home and hearth, Latter-day Saint-style. From Rockstar Diaries (Naomi) to Underaged and Engaged(Stacie) to Nie Nie Dialogues (Stephanie) to Say Yes to Hoboken (Liz), Mormon lifestyle bloggers occupy their very own corner of the blogosphere." 

(Nie Nie Dialogues is one of my faves btw...)
Another paragraph states, 

"Of course, the larger question is, are these women's lives really as sweet and simple as they appear? Blogs have always been a way to mediate and prettify your own life; you'd be a fool to compare your real self to someone else's carefully arranged surface self."


"The bloggers I read may be as happy with their lot as they seem. Or not. While some Mormon women prosper under the cultural norms for wife- and mother-dom, others chafe. Utah is, after all, the state with the highest rate of prescription antidepressant use."

I live in Utah (for another five months) and I see these beautiful women/young mothers at the grocery store. I go into their homes that are perfectly decorated with homemade crafts. Their children are polite and presentable with cute accessories and perfectly set hair. Occasionally my family and I fit into one or more of these categories. But, are things always as they seem?

Well, Having been a Mormon all my life, I find that a lot of times they are and occasionally they aren't. I think that a lot of Mormons I know, despite their challenges, try to put their best food forward. Is there anything wrong with looking nice, being polite, and knowing how to sew? And furthermore, is there anything wrong with taking medication so that you can better do all these good things? I don't think so. Some say that Utah has such a high rate of antidepressant use due to the pressures of the culture to be perfect. There is an element of truth to this, but I see another side too. I, for one, am educated and see medication as a way to be stable, accomplish more, and be better for the ones I love and those within my reach. 

Aren't we all, Mormon or not, trying to put our best foot forward. If you have depression or anxiety sometimes you just need a little help. Shine on people.


-My three month old laying on the floor kicking cheerfully while he grins and coos.
-My four year old son saying "I love Mommy son time."
-My daughter coming home from school and giving me a big hug and kiss and saying, "I missed you." 
-Chocolate chip cookies
-My husband sleeping with the baby all night so I could be well rested.



  1. Hey Jody...totally stalking you here. :)

    I just thought I'd pass along the POV of my friend's husband. He said that the author failed to mention that mormon housewives don't usually "self-medicate" depression with alcohol...or any other substance. So...yeah. That would raise our "quota" of anti-depressants right there.

    No glass of wine with dinner. No "daily beer" as my friend's mom called it.

  2. Nancy, I never thought of it from that POV, but that's a very good point!


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