This episode is practically geared towards LDS church school (BYU, BYU-I, BYU-Hawaii, LDS Business College, etc) students, prospective students, and their loved ones. In this, we include parents of students admitted to church schools or those who anticipate their children will likely go to church schools. In light of recent news regarding rape on BYU campus, many Mormons transitioning into unorthodoxy are asking what they can do to help.
Kristy and her husband Rolf (researcher who specializes in Educational Policy) combine their experiences at BYU and relative expertises in psychology and education to offer stories, advice, and hope. Kristy candidly shares her experience with Title IX as a naive BYU freshman experiencing sexual harassment, and she also reads from and analyzes another woman’s honor code letter (with permission). They discuss the implications of the “just world” hypothesis to which human cognition naturally gravitates, and what we can do about it once we notice it’s happening: responding either rationally (acceptance that bad thing happen to good people, doing what you can to alleviate others’ suffering) or irrationally (denial, justification).
Links mentioned in episode:
President Worthen’s video interview
Bednar’s “Quick to Observe” Talk on Women’s Earrings and Obedience
Lynn Robbin’s moist cookie devotional
Blaire’s story on Feminist Mormon Housewives
Kristy with her BYU ID taken in 2002 when she entered BYU as a freshman, and the year she was first sexually harassed by another student:
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Moist. Yes, that word has to go (thanks for a little comic relief in the middle of something heart wrenching).
This problem is more prevalent than people want to admit. A family member went to the bishop about being sexually assaulted and his first question to her was “What were you wearing?” I’d like to believe this bishop meant well, but was just not aware of the implications of his question. Thank you for the podcast.
I was also a victim of severe mistreatment and sexual exploitation. I was raped by a Mormon man (who is still in ‘good standing’). I was not seeking sex. I was no party girl or troublemaker. BYU fired me for being “unworthy” when gossip and hearsay about my abuse surfaced. This was very sad for me, and I was given no chance to defend myself. Even worse, it was a GA Emeritus who personally fired me (with a smile on his face). After sexual abuse, support and inclusion are important. Being treated so badly is unChristlike and truly sick. Remember the Spanish Inquisition? Mormon men are not infallible, in fact, the incentive to hide, deny, bury or bluff about perversion is worse than if it were honestly exposed. Best wishes to other victims. There is a secret brotherhood at BYU that is corrupt. Mark my words.