Mormon Parenting: Celebrating and improving traditional marriage

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    April 11, 2013 9:04 p.m.

    What you wrote is so true...The problem with redefining marriage to other than one man, one woman, is that the word "marriage" looses it's meaning...and over time, marriage itself looses it's meaning. This is exactly what has been happening in many Scandinavian countries. As the meaning of Marriage changed, it became much less popular. Marriage was no longer 'unique' and special. Suddenly, it was anything you wanted it to mean.

    When any word is redefined as something it is NOT, the word looses it's integrity. I may want to call a Tulip, a Rose, but that does not make a Tulip, a Rose. It just makes the word Tulip mean something it is not...

    Another similar illustration we are seeing is that the word/term 'Disability' (as in ADA) is being redefined into any condition that is not 'Optimal Health'. Soon the word (disability) will have little meaning, everyone will have one (a disability), and the country will be bankrupt paying out entitlements...all because words like: Disability, Marriage, Personal Responsibility, Racism, and Intolerance are being redefined into meaningless words/terms.

    Thank you for a great article!

  • kvnsmnsn Springville, UT
    April 10, 2013 5:13 p.m.

    Djk, I am a devout Latter-day Saint. I don't support a gay or lesbian couple's right to marry, but I do support such a couple's right to adopt, for a very simple reason. In the State of Texas the policy is that when a child needs a pair of foster parents, or needs a pair of adoptive parents, then they place that child with a straight couple if one is available, and with a gay couple if there isn't a straight couple available. Sometimes the State of Texas places children with gay couples. What that means is that there simply aren't enough straight couples willing to be foster or adoptive parents to take care of all the children who need some. I think that it would be better for those children to be raised by a gay couple than it would be for them to not have anybody to raise them at all. It would be better to be raised in an adoptive home than it would be to grow up in an orphanage, without the special relationship that comes from parents.

  • chinookdoctor PASADENA, CA
    April 8, 2013 11:34 a.m.

    As a child of divorce I know that it is a horrible situation for children. I also see that children born out of wedlock can experience difficulties as mothers and fathers move frequently for work, try to support a household on one income and move in and out of monogamous relationships. These are real issues, but not universal in non-traditional families. Historically, traditional marriage, according to many proponents of it, required women to be subservient to their "patriarch" husband, without any guarantee of self-determination, education and freedom of speech. By law or cultural precedence, every caucasian male in the US had these rights and privileges, but not a lot of women in traditional marriages, even after the Civil Rights movement. I see extremely antiquated ideas about traditional marriage from many church members such as that a husband's education and career are more important than the wife's, and that men preside in the family by making all of the decisions. I've gotten this counsel by Bishops who dislike that I'm a physician! If I believed such foolish, ungodly notions about my female role in a traditional marriage, I would run screaming from it!

  • Contrarius Lebanon, TN
    April 7, 2013 6:40 a.m.

    @djk --

    "our Heavenly Father is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow."

    The Bible tells us that slavery is a fine practice. The Bible tells us that polygamy is perfectly okay. Are these ideas still acceptable today?

    "I believe in living God's commandments..."

    Which commandment talks about homosexuality being a sin? I missed that one.

  • djk blue springs, MO
    April 6, 2013 4:30 p.m.

    i do not understand why those whom have testimonies of the gospel can support marriage between 2 people whom are in love no matter their gender. marriage is between MAN and WOMAN ... not man and man or woman and woman...our Heavenly Father is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. conference talks today made that clear yet again. How do members support gay rights in marriage and adoption ? i do not feel being biased but I believe in living God's commandments...marriage is sacred between husband and wife ! how much more clear does this need to be ? the popular votes scream in our faces about what we are suppose to think but what is forgotten is God's commandments. the 10 commandments ? read the Holy Bible and learn about marriage. same sex attraction is a weakness. I know some will be upset over this comment but i have seen married men become weak in their relationships with their wives and have been dooped by satan. there is help so get the help.
    so what if other countries support gay marriage that doesn't mean the United States needs to do this. the liberals are wrong wrong wrong.

  • Contrarius Lebanon, TN
    April 6, 2013 3:11 p.m.

    @ID --

    in re: Loren Marks --

    Oh, cmon.

    Marks was specifically banned from giving expert testimony in a legal case related to Prop-8, because he was forced to admit in a court deposition that he had cherry-picked information to make his claims and that he hadn't even **read** the studies he cited. He made these admissions **in a sworn court deposition**.

    Marks also states in his study that "opponents of same-sex have made “egregious overstatements” disparaging gay and lesbian parents."

    You said: "let us not do so without counting the cost honestly"

    Absolutely. HONESTLY being the operative term here. Loren Marks is a lousy example of that principle.

    The fact remains: EVERY group of child development experts that I'm aware of has come out in favor of gay marriage. These **experts** recognize that children grow up just fine with parents of either gender, as long as those homes are stable and loving.

    I'm still challenging you to find **any** group of child development experts that disagrees with this assessment.

  • Swedish reader Stockholm, Sweden
    April 6, 2013 11:38 a.m.

    There is a shift in why we marry or don't marry. As the Eyres pointed out, 60 percent of all households here in Stockholm, Sweden are occupied by a single individual. Historically, marriage has been a joint venture, where children could be born into a situation where they had legal rights and were cared for, and where elderly parents were taken care of. It was not about romantic love or sexual attraction, but about family love, security and continuity. Today, people marry for romantic love. Traditional marriage has always involved a man and at least one woman - there would be no children otherwise. In Greece, where homosexual love was celebrated, marriage was still between a man and a woman because marriage wasn't about sexual attraction. I think the reason people are staying single and choosing not to have children is that they often have attraction/romantic love as a goal - and attraction/romantic love can be very fleeting. Children need to be in a situation where their parents put family love and the children's needs before their own.

  • IDblue&white Rigby, ID
    April 6, 2013 10:25 a.m.

    Not sure you are aware of the flawed "science" underneath the "studies" which dot the headlines from such bodies that you mention. Several recent peer-reviewed publications have closely looked at these "studies" and revealed very un-scientific methodology at their root. Dr. Loren Marks, of Louisiana State University has carefully reviewed the research to date and details finding the serious problems that are decidedly un-scientific (see his peer-reviewed article in Social Science Research 41 (2012) 735–751).

    Either way, it is true that passionate adults can pursue their own fulfillment at the risk of children, but let us not do so without counting the cost honestly. History is replete with familial and societal decay and destruction when adults have insisted on putting passion above appropriate priorities.

    Whichever of the Eyre's "strikes" we might focus on, clearly the root of the problem is an irresponsible and selfish adult or adults who should have done, or do more and better - including me.

  • DistantThunder Vincentown, NJ
    April 5, 2013 11:52 p.m.

    I believe in organic marriage and just as many believe that GMO foods are unhealthy, I believe that GMO marriage has unintended side-affects. I agree totally with the Eyres that as people abandon marriage, children are affected, which means things like drug use, crime rate, academic achievements all head in the wrong direction. More of the bad stuff, less of the good stuff. I think the time is coming when people will want to put on their resume; "I grew up in a stable, loving family with a mother and a father who didn't use drugs or alcohol setting the example for a life-long pattern which I have followed." Knowing the cost to companies for drug rehab and the downside of unstable workers, these facts may prove impressive.

  • Getting it Right Sunnyvale, CA
    April 5, 2013 1:30 p.m.

    @Why Not

    I just threw back at Ranch Hand what he just posted . I never said you can or you cannot marry whoever you want. It is not for me to judge on that.
    You are 100% wrong though because neither ranch hand nor you can marry whoever you want in California and most of the other states because same sex union is illegal.
    Again, I'll let the courts decide on it.

  • kvnsmnsn Springville, UT
    April 5, 2013 1:06 p.m.

    Why Not and RanchHand, what limits would you put then on who could marry who?

  • dr.bridell mclean, VA
    April 5, 2013 12:55 p.m.

    Here's what bugs me about so many of the comments coming in on this article:
    which is that the "four strikes" or the four ways in which traditional marriage is being weakened are starting to spell out the most fundamental shift of values and mores in the history of the world, and if marriage, the glue that has held society together since history began, is laid aside, it won't be very long before there is nothing much left!

  • Getting it Right Sunnyvale, CA
    April 5, 2013 11:34 a.m.


    I'm not telling gay couples or anybody for that matter what to do. I'm just exercising my freedom of expression and speech just like everyone in this country. I'll leave it to the courts to decide if gay couples can marry.

  • Contrarius Lebanon, TN
    April 5, 2013 11:16 a.m.

    @Getting It Right --

    "You have absolutely no right, no right whatsoever to tell me what to do."

    Yet somehow you believe you have the right to tell gay couples what to do?

    @ID --

    "Scientifically, the research data overwhelmingly favor 2-gender marriage... "

    This is simply not true. In fact, the groups of medical and scientific professionals who know the MOST about the development of children -- like the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry -- have come out in FAVOR of gay marriage, because they know that children grow up just fine in loving, stable homes with parents of ANY gender. I challenge you to find **any** group of child development experts who have come out against gay marriage.

    As for this article -- I actually agree with the major points of the article. Marriage is important. And if you believe that marriage is important, then you should promote the **positive** aspects. Don't waste your time tearing down someone else's marriage, or trying to prevent someone else from enjoying the same rights that you do. Work to improve your own lives, and respect the rights of other people to lead their own.

  • BobLaw Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 5, 2013 10:17 a.m.

    To Ranch Hand,

    Just as those who support gay marriage have a right to promote their ideas, those who are against it have a right to promote their ideas.

    It is unfortunate and telling that those who are against traditional marriage are so insistant on being able to speak out for non-traditional marriage and are so unwilling to let those who are for traditional marriage speak out for traditional marriage.

    We are not telling you what to do. You are free to choose. Just as we are free to choose. Each of us receives the fruits of our choices.

  • Getting it Right Sunnyvale, CA
    April 5, 2013 10:04 a.m.

    @Ranch Hand

    You have absolutely no right, no right whatsoever to tell me what to do.


  • dr.bridell mclean, VA
    April 5, 2013 9:13 a.m.

    I would just say to "Ranch Hand" that what it means to be an American is that we can speak out relative to our convictions.
    and to oppose things we believe are destructive to society.
    The problem with so many "movements" including the same sex marriage movement is that it demonizes anyone who speaks out on the other side.

  • IDblue&white Rigby, ID
    April 5, 2013 9:12 a.m.

    This is a helpful distinction between the 4 "strikes" against God's revealed design (and seemingly former societal understanding) of marriage. Scientifically, the research data overwhelmingly favor 2-gender marriage, both in terms of the spouses' well-being and health, as well as, each child they procreate. The science is also clear about the positive benefits for adopted and foster children that 2-gender marriages provide.
    On a side note, I find it morbidly fascinating how common sense about the virtues of marriage between the two biologically complimentary genders gets trampled and twisted in the stampede of adults who seem bent on validation for their brand of expressing passions. As per this article, whether it be hetero or homo expressions of sexual passions, the 4 strikes are manifestations of a fundamentally selfish and self-centered view, rather than being responsible to the biological creations (children) those passions are designed to produce.
    I am working to more lovingly celebrate and improve my own marriage, and appreciate the Eyre's focus on all 4 strikes against obtaining the virtues that only marriage between one man and one woman can provide.

  • Blessed Father Highland , UT
    April 5, 2013 7:42 a.m.

    Thank you Linda and Richard for a great article well-written. Keep it up.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    April 5, 2013 7:20 a.m.


    So those who disagree with you have no right to free speech?


  • elarue NEW YORK, NY
    April 5, 2013 7:18 a.m.

    We want to defend marriage? Simple answer! FIX THE ECONOMY! We should be running from anti-family individuals like Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan and be following the suggestions of true defenders of the family like Robert Reich and Paul Krugman to build the middle class and middle class FAMILIES up again!

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    April 5, 2013 7:07 a.m.

    "Those who believe that marriage should be between one man and one woman have every right to follow their convictions and to speak out against and oppose gay marriage."


    Those who believe that marriage should be between one man and one woman have every right to follow their convictions and NOT enter into a same gender marriage. They have absolutely no right, no right whatsoever, to tell other American Citizens who they may or may not marry.