Families in Crisis
By Nate Richardson
A Member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Available free at RichardsonStudies.com
Table of Contents
Chapter Meth the Permanent Brain Frier, Marijuana The Gateway, & other Insights from Cleon Skousen on Instant Insanity Drugs (revisit the cleon lecture specify which drugs was talking about, just1?) 27
I saw a man at the state mental hospital who was a praying man. To see such a man there was very rare. Almost no one seemed to pray there. Doing room checks I would catch him on his knees at his bedside. I also observed that he went to worship services when they were offered. He read scripture and was kind to those around him. He was trying to be his best self. One day out of the blue, the judge decided to release him again into the community. This was a shock to him and everyone else. I attribute his release to his great faith. He is not the first person I’ve seen released on account of turning one’s will to God. They elected God as their primary therapist, and he lifted them higher and more quickly than they expected, and he is with them so long as they remember him.
Nature of Addiction as an Illness
Creating Desire for Recovery by Looking to the Beginning
Will and Work for Recovery
Relationships for Recovery
Grace for Recovery
Nature of Addiction as an Illness
Goal: Help a couple understand that the nature of addiction is more of an illness than a chosen habit.
Purpose: Teach that addiction is an advanced stage of illness which no one willingly chooses, and which no one can easily leave.
Discussion: Ask Jon and Mary if they have spoken with each other about the nature of addiction. Ask them if they see addiction differently than each other. Help them see that they can come to an understanding of what addiction is, which will help them to have less contention in their lives, and help them become a team rather than oppose each other in the journey toward recovery. Jon is the addicted candidate, and Mary is learning how to best support him.
Jon, 1. How does it feel when Mary tells you to “just stop already”? 2. Mary, how does it feel when you continue to tell Jon he needs to “just stop already or we will divorce”? You have not seen much improvement from this, and resentment is building in your marriage to the point that a divorce does seem eminent. Jon and Mary, do you want your marriage to last? Perhaps at this point you don’t know. Let’s talk about the nature of addiction. Addiction involves powerlessness, meaning Jon can resolve to quit, and know that his biology will kick in hours later compelling him to abuse substance in conditions other than confinement or straight jacket. Powerlessness comes on gradually, but you have now reached the stage of true shackled addiction, where your will alone becomes unable to break the chains of addiction. Mary, do you think Jon has been sincere? How does it make you feel when he relapses after sincere commitment to be sober? How has it taxed your financial life, and your friendship? What do you think we could do to help Jon other than petitioning him to be sober? Jon, what ideas do you have about how to end the powerlessness cycle of your addiction, seeing as you’ve tried to quit many times without success? Are the both of you willing to look outward to find more support in treating this addiction? Have you heard of
Exploration: Invite Jon and Mary to analyze their lives to look for the missing pieces: What could Jon be using his addiction to cope with? Ask yourselves why he is seeking fantasy and alter-ego and euphoria when those things should be available in a regular life. What is Jon feeling that is leading him to substance abuse? Is there loss in his life which he has not grieved over? Has he developed coping strategies for his day to day problems which have grown to consume his life? Will you make a list of how Jon reacts to various stressful parts of day to day living, and alternate coping skills he could be using? Jon, will you list your 100 favorite lies involved in why you justify using substance in your day to day life?
Goal: Help a couple understand that though biology has a large part to do with addiction, desire for recovery will be inherent in his recovery.
Purpose: Teach Jon and Mary that by looking to the roots of their marriage they can find the hope for exercising the willpower to overcome bad addictive habits.
Discussion: Ask Jon what his goals in life are. Ask Mary what her goals in life are. Ask them how they felt on their wedding day and when their first child was born. Ask them what they wanted to be when they grew up as they were children. Ask Jon and Mary what things are not as they foresaw they would be. Ask Jon what sacrifices he can reasonably make to bring him closer to his desired life. Ask Mary how she can positively support Jon in the changes which he has committed to make. Ask Jon and Mary how they will respond if relapse occurs. Teach them that relapse should not be taken lightly, that anger and frustration and withholding of privileges are part of what comes from this, but show them at the same time that they don’t have to express hopelessness and faithlessness in Jon if he stumbles. Teach them that relapse does not mean starting over at ground zero, but that it means taking a step back in aspects of trust. The skills Jon has learned will help him to recover more quickly from relapse than he was able to do in the past. Teach them that Jon will have more power to exercise willpower even when he falls as he continues to learn positive coping strategies for the stresses and grief of his life.
Exploration: Invite Jon to make actual lists of how he will cope with the stresses of day to day life, and invite Mary to make actual lists of how she will react when Jon does a positive or negative thing, these lists will help them to not act on the emotion of the moment. Invite Jon to keep by him talismans of motivation which remind him of his life goals. Invite them to post their life goals and their family goals in a prominent location in their home, vehicles, and personal planners. Invite Jon to isolate one behavior that he wants to change, and practice responding correctly to the environment of that problem over and over. This will increase his faith that he has the power to change.
Goal: Help a couple understand that recovery will not be easy, but that so long as they apply correct principles, it will be not only possible but a certain outcome.
Purpose: Teach Jon that he will need to cancel many of the extracurricular events in his life to focus on recovery. Like the obese person that gives up crocheting to spend an extra few hours at the gym each day, so will Jon need to find areas in his life which are not supporting his goals, eliminate them, and identify areas which need more strengthening.
Discussion: Ask Jon to make a list of all the useless things he does. Ask Jon to make a list of his weaknesses, and then to make another list about ways he could improve on those weaknesses. Jon, these weaknesses could be social, mental, physical, emotional, spiritual, recreational, vocational, sexual, etc. You see, to have a healthy life we want you to find balance in all areas of your life. If you never have energy, what are some things you could do other than cocaine? If you’re never happy, what are some things, perhaps social and relationally, which you could do to give yourself more opportunities for happiness other than alcohol? If you’re not feeling sexually satisfied in your marriage, what are some things other than pornography affairs and masturbation which you could do in your marriage which could help you both to find more satisfaction in this regard? Beware however Jon that many who use pornography and masturbation and other wise unhealthy objectification and overly emphasize sexuality in life are doing this out of a desire for health in some other aspect than sexuality. Sexual deviance could be a way of seeking happiness to deal with grief, or a myriad of other things.
Exploration: Invite Jon to spend 3 hours a day at the gym getting in good shape (this can help regulate his emotions and increase his willpower to make good choices). Invite Jon to spend time talking to his wife each evening rather than going for sex off the bat (this can increase the likelihood of them having sex at all, and increase the pleasure therein, and increase the connectedness in their relationship, which will heal their sexual life as well, because connection is a proven higher motivation in life than sex or power.). Invite Mary to take care of her health by regular exercise, reading wholesome books, worshiping at a church, and other activities which will sustain her during the crucible of Jon’s addiction recovery.
Goal: Help a couple understand that connection is the highest motivator in life, and that their relationship as a married couple is the primary relationship for supporting recovery. Also show them that healthy environments and friends are needed for recovery.
Purpose: Teach Jon that his friends influence his choices. Teach Mary that she also needs a support group to help her through the addiction of her husband. Teach Jon and Mary that this is a critical time to build their marital relationship by going on frequent and regular outings/dates together involving work and recreation.
Discussion: Ask Jon and Mary how they feel their relationship is overall, and to write down memories of their relationship at its highest point. Jon, what are the places you go where you are most likely to relapse? What are the places where you are most likely to be sober? Ask Jon what people make him want to be sober, and which people make him want to relapse. Ask Jon what he can do to cultivate the healthy relationships, and polity put on the shelf and otherwise eradicate the non-working relationships? Ask Mary how she can make life pleasant for Jon, and ask Jon what he can do to make life pleasant for Mary. Ask Jon how his children are being affected by his addiction, and what he wants his children to be when they grow up, and weather his choices are supporting or working against that desire.
Exploration: Invite Jon to enroll in AA/NA and Mary to enroll in Al-Anon so they can be surrounded by others who have similar struggles whom can offer advice, and so that Jon and Mary can have the redemptive experience of teaching others who are not as far along as they are in the process of recovery. Invite Jon to get a sponsor whom he can call when he is tempted to abuse substance. Invite Mary to get a sponsor whom she can call when she feels tired and depressed in the recovery of her husband. Invite Jon to keep pictures of his family and other role models nearby when he is traveling on business, as well as making friends when he is out on business rather than being reclusive.
Goal: Help a couple understand that they cannot recover by mere willpower and skill, but that the aid of a higher power is needed for recovery.
Purpose: If you don’t want to get specific and its often helpful to not be too specific when working as a therapist rather than a pastor, show them that there remains a need for spirituality in their recovery, that recovery consists in 1. Spiritual involvement with their higher power and 2. The undivided resolve of themselves to use their willpower for recovery, including seeking all skills possible to work out their recovery. Teach them that their higher power can help them in their journey for recovery, and show them case examples of others like Bill W. whom have turned to a higher power for help in recovery. Teach them the doctrine of powerlessness and dependency, and the need for supernatural help to recovery from such strong enemies. Show that the field of addiction is perhaps the only scientific behavioral science field where it is long time recognized that the involvement of deity and or a higher power is needed in the recovery process. (If you do for some reason find it okay to get into specifics of Christianity as this being their professed faith, consider teaching the following: Teach Jon that he is loved by God, and teach Mary that she is respected by God for standing by Jon the best way she can. Teach them of the universal need for repentance and a change of heart. Teach them that a change of heart comes as a gift from God to persons whom sincerely repent of their sins. Teach them that Jesus Christ will help them satisfy the justice required in life, and that God their Father will accept the combined efforts of themselves and Jesus Christ as Jon and Mary turn their lives over to Jesus Christ.)
Discussion: Ask Jon who is higher power is, and what he feels his higher power expects of him. Ask him if he has prayed for help to his higher power in the journey of his recovery. Ask him what might be the consequence of praying for help vs the consequence of not praying for help. Ask Mary how she has been involved with her higher power in her journey of supporting and helping Jon.
Exploration: Invite Jon to pray to his higher power for help, and to read his religious text on a dramatically increased regular basis. Invite Mary to make time to worship her higher power during this consuming trial of Jon’s addiction. Invite Jon and Mary to forgive each other for any nagging or neglect or other damages, and invite them to join in their worship together, and to create family traditions of worshipping the higher power, including regular religious meetings with others who feel similarly to them in these regards, and a regular dedication to searching sacred texts of their faith.
These are common standards which are observed to one extent or another in various RTC’s. They are not the format of any one facility, but are ideas and best practices in my opinion.
The family home is and always will be the ideal place for living and learning. However, there are rare cases which may necessitate a child leaving the home due to flagrant and continuous disregard of all basic home structure expectations, particularly those involving illegal behavior. Here we will consider some arrangements for those scenarios.
Treatment Center Leveling System
Students typically advance through a series of Levels as a reflection of their commitment toward and progression in their recovery. Here are some ideas for each of these levels, which are typical.
Entering the facility, a student is at level 0. Once they’ve established that they won’t try to kill people and run away every 5 minutes, they advance to a level 1. Level 0 is a good time for detoxification from any drugs (including pornography) which the student was formerly addicted to compulsively.
A strict dress code forces the students to be modest in their appearance, and many rules further enforce respect toward peer and staff (such as no swearing). Students in the level 0 are dressing in orange shirts.
New students are also not allowed to have communications with the outside world, or other lower level students. New students are level 0, and only when a level 3 can a student speak to other lower level students. This helps students in bad places mentally not conspire with one another in non-working theories and illegal plans.
Breaking the program into phases helps the adolescent one-track brain understand that breaking the chains of addiction to substance and learned non-working behaviors doesn’t happen overnight, and that it is not black-and-white simple.
Many of them enter treatment, as evidenced by the letter home in week 1 begging to be taken home with promises of full repentance, believing that their addiction is surface deep and easily remediated. Repentance can be immediate, but such a letter home when brought to treatment only indicates theya re sorry they got a consequence, not that they are sorry for their actions. By prior disobedience they’ve already indicated they don’t respect your authority as their parent. If their sudden supposed repentance is in fact sincere, they will be willing to submit to whatever the parent wishes, including voluntarily submitting to the treatment program rather than immediately returning home.
The level program shows them that it takes work to recover, and most importantly, it gives them examples of people who have recovered.
Level 1 is a place where the students come to terms with the fact that they are in treatment, and that they will remain there until they have made appropriate changes in their lives, however long that could take.
Treatment duration is usually 3-5 months, or in extreme bases, 6-8 months. Some places keep students even longer, though I see no need for that. If the student is not responding by half a year, a different facility or jail may be in order. Again, there may be some extreme cases where doing otherwise would be good.
Driven by a desire to go home, often students begin to make outward changes in this stage. Students in level 1 are dressed in tan dress pants and a blue button up dress shirt. The therapist of the student will have a weekly assignment for the student, such as writing essays on topics like “My 100 Favorite Lies” and “My 100 Favorite Things” and “100 Reasons Why I’m Not Helping My Family” and “100 Reasons I’m Likely Going to Spend My Life In Prison” or “100 Reasons Why I Use Substances”.
In Level 2, a student learns that it doesn’t pay to lie your way up the levels in the program. They learn that only in transparent communication with their peers in group therapy as well as with their therapist in individual therapy (these both occurring once per week) Optional groups including bible study, AA & NA (Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous), and a loss group for persons dealing with significant loss of a parent, etc.) are also available, and participation in these allows the student to show he/she is putting forth individual efforts on their own behalf to make progress. If a student is caught in a lie, he is liable to drop a level. If a student confesses that he has lied while at treatment and broken rules to which he did not confess, he drops a level, and goes to detention. In detention, students are seated in desks, and subject to transcribing audio lectures to earn their way back into the regular treatment. Regular treatment has privileges such as longer than 5-minute showers, and the rare educational film, and the athletic teams. All students are monitored day and night, and more so in detention. It is standard for a student to make a confession before ever progressing to Level 3, however disheartening this confession is to the student who formerly used lying to get ahead. Honesty is a key focus of this stage of student, and honesty is expected from the student here on out.
It is in this stage where students also can, when deemed worthy, attend seminars to learn more about themselves and their path to recovery in an intensive highly interactive setting with others who are likewise likely prepared for it. New students do not go to these seminars as they are not ready for the transparent honesty that would make the seminar meaningful.
These seminars are private meetings of which the students are not allowed to speak outside of the meeting. These seminars are time when students meet with other students who have shown the same level of honest effort and commitment to recovery, and they meet with an advanced specialist who takes the entire group (sometimes 30 or more students of both boys and girls (the only co-ed activity on campus for lower level students)) though a series of soul-searching activities which help the students in their path toward recovery. Students often leave these seminars highly motivated, and with increased faith and hope in their recovery, and a renewed (if not new) sense of self-worth. Students pass or fail the seminar based on their transparency and sincerity.
As a student advances toward becoming an upper level, he is taught that confession is critical to recovery, and encouraged to write a “confession letter” home. This letter is often quite long, relating to the person most effected (usually parents) all of the deception and misdeeds they have committed against them, themselves, and others. This is part of the 12 Step Program of the Anonymous programs, but all students are encouraged to write a confession letter regardless of whether they choose to participate in the Anonymous programs. This letter is the antithesis to the earlier begging to come home letter. It is to say, “this is what I did wrong, I am now willing to face the full consequences of my actions.”
Level 3 is often a deeply consequential phase of transitioning from lower level to higher level. New students are not allowed to speak to each other, as these relationships are usually destructive and divisive. The only students who can speak to new students of a level 0-2 are students who have attained the Level 3, and whom have passed the various seminars. A student fails the seminars if they show no effort or transparency therein, expressing some sort of a rebellious spirit. Mature judges must determine the advancement of each student. Fellow students, the orchestrator, and perhaps the therapist determine whether a student passes a seminar. “3 through Focus” are the students whom are permitted to speak to lower level students. Other companies who don’t have this policy are likely to witness more group escape attempts, secret societies, gangs, planned violence, cliques, etc. A level 3 student is one who is committed to recover, even if they are struggling in progress, their commitment is there, and signs are beginning to show of their commitment. The Level 3 student recognizes that many of their behaviors were destructive, but has a difficult time realizing that even small acts of rebellion are contributing toward their unstable lives.
Level 4 is more particularly where the student has experience in leadership roles, and is thoroughly put through the refiner’s fire when it comes to facing their fears, facing their families, facing their home lives which they are soon to return to. Though these are high levels, students still have much work to do before being prepared to return home.
In some cases where the change of heart is evident, and support systems are in place at their homes, students are now prepared to return home, particularly if they have made religious commitments connections and plans.
If a student confesses that he has been lying in his treatment up to that point and has been breaking rules, he may likely drop back down to a level 1. This drop is devastating, meaning more time in the program as a minimal time allotment is required for each stage, but the student realizes that total honesty is the only way to full recovery. It is not uncommon for a student to get stuck at these levels, showing great progress, but lacking in a grasp of the reality of their situation as determined by a council of the student’s therapist, and other employees of the facility. This council of level advancement may include fellow students at the 5th level whom often have important insights into the day-to-day attitudes of the student.
These upper level students are exposed to more than the lower level students, including occasional interaction with students of the opposite sex in dances and trainings on adult roles. Since so many of the students got themselves into the program from deviant behaviors linked to behavior toward persons of the opposite sex, this can be a very trying time to confront real issues in the student’s lives (though issues of pornography, sexuality, STD’s, pregnancy, dating standards, and trust issues related to the student’s orientation regarding the opposite sex are not reserved for upper level treatment).
The upper level student will surrender all of their rebellion of non-working principles to adapting correct principles. They are taught that guessing at what is right and responding to punishment will only take them so far, whereas adopting working/healthy principles will lead them to make good choices in all situations.
Level 5 is the stage of triumph which every other student (the serious ones at least) hopes to attain. It is seen as putting on the full armor of God, though secular programs are quite limited in religious aspects, aside from AA meetings encouraging students to find a higher power. In some situations, therapists have permission to encourage students to find their religious roots.
These students are role models to the other students, because the other students often believe their situation is unique and cannot be overcome. The upper level students prove them wrong, showing that persons from similar situations as themselves can throw out the non-working behaviors without throwing out their fun personalities and healthy (even cool) hobbies. These are the role models who help other students on a day to day basis, and whom are making plans to either find an apartment, or whom are taking the final steps in completing their high school diplomas via the program’s packet or accelerated classroom system with summer school. The school is attended by students of all levels. In some cases, a program could break students into middle and high school, though admitting students at young ages is highly frowned upon.
Level 5 students may be 18 years old and chose to remain in the program to take advantage of the high school diploma program. Once a student is 18 years old, they are free to leave the program at any time unless court ordered, meaning they will likely need to be relocated to another center for incarcerated adults who are deemed incompetent to be on their own. These will go to a half way home, a step down home, or some mental facility according to their court orders.
18-year-old students who feel unprepared to leave the program for other than academic reasons are given extensive training to help them into their adult life, as being an adult in a program is frowned upon for the development of the student.
17-year-old students whom have shown some degree of progress toward their recovery may attend a regular class which teaches skills specifically for independent adults, whereas the younger students will likely return home to live with their parents or foster parents / adoption after the program has reached completion. Younger students often have a more difficult time in the program, having a more distant understanding of reality and real consequences of their actions, though young students often show great maturity and progress in the program, and great post-treatment success. The odds of young students returning to a facility are sadly quite high. Level 5 students often leave the facility to get used to being in the outside world again. Most of these students have been in the program for over half a year and need positive experiences with society to show them hands on how to interact in positive ways in the community. It is not uncommon for the graduated student to write letters to the students at treatment centers, explaining to them what life is like “on the out’s”, and the trials they face. Lamentably, some students whom have graduated the program will return to the program from a series of serious relapses whom have shown they were unprepared for a healthy life. If a student lies to reach a level 6 (almost impossible), they now return to the program with a very real understanding that lying will not get them far. They must work very hard to reestablish trust, and level advancement will be a long and painful process for them. Sometimes deception is so ingrained in the life of the student that only a severe consequence such as this will pull them out of it. These students have often returned to religious roots, or found some form of religion to support the spiritual aspects of their recovery. They often commit to continued treatment in the Anonymous programs, or with outpatient therapists as they are taught that sustained sobriety and recovery will be difficult, though less difficult with a positive support group. Some students at this level are puzzled about where they will find positive peers in their outpatient life, and therapists help them consider environments which could be conducive to building committed relationships for lasting recovery.
Treatment Center Advantage: Safety
Many students feel that if they were to reveal their crimes at home, that their families would call the police on them, or at least forbid them from a social life. These students have come from scenarios where telling the truth or being caught has resulted in those consequences before, and many of them have become thoroughly afraid of being honest in the context of their family and community. Their name has gone from bad to worse as issues become public at home and in circles of immediate and extended family. They’ve learned to live a double life, and healing that divide is most painful & embarrassing.
A treatment center gives the student a place where they can confess to a third-party therapist and group of peers. The student is “locked away safely” where (perhaps rightfully) vindictive parents, local law enforcement, or ecclesiastical leaders cannot directly administer consequences to them for their actions. In this inpatient and secluded environment far removed from their homes, students with serious issues may be more likely to confess things which they thought they would take to their grave (and hell). Students chained down to addiction also are compelled to not use the substance, which gives them a chance to lessen their dependency on the substance they had been abusing. Though the student is under constant surveillance, they can feel safe from themselves and others. There must be high standards of boundaries at the program.
Boundaries imposed by the no-talking-lower-level-to-lower-level rule will greatly help the students to be safe and have a positive environment. Ideally, there are higher level students and all staff who discourage vulgarity and apply consequences when such is used. One of the key pitfalls of modern programs like this is the lax enforcement of these type of high standards.
Therapy is centered on several key aspects of the 12 Step Program including confession to a trusted and effected person, commitment to sobriety. The therapist and student have a very close relationship, and the therapist can often get places with the student which the parents could not. As close as parents may be, a third party can be helpful to breakthrough roadblocks. The student often is embarrassed and ashamed by their choices, and is therefore not willing to divulge and speak about these subjects with his parents. Many parents are not trained in substance and other behavioral issues, and though well intended, resort to non-working therapeutic tactics.
Treatment Center Dress Code
One key way to tell whether a program is worth it’s stock is the dress code. If a program is lax about dress, they will be lax about many other things. The philosophy of a program with “anything goes” dress code will likely have a similar “anything goes” moral standard, which will not help the student grow in the right direction.
The dress code shows the students that there is more to them than their alter-ego/fantasy. They learn the intrinsic value of themselves without trendy clothing. They learn social life doesn’t need to be created via clothing cliques. They throw away their “image”, and gain an acceptance for their body type and personality. Trendy clothing can get in the way of one’s personality shining through. A strict uniform can help the student avoid falling back into an unhealthy clique. Strangely, this contributes to mental abstinence, and makes physical abstinence easier.
The dress code allows each student to be brought to a level playing field, same as their peers. Money no longer determines their social life. Each is brought back to the age of childhood via their simple/out-of-awareness appearance, and their thoughts turn to deeper matters than outward appearances. This can also encourage honesty, as they’ve used outward appearances to deceive their families, hiding the truth. The “truth” of who they are is no longer hidden under masses of clothing and symbols. The new symbol for their personality is the words they say, and they learn to make those words honest words.
In some very rare cases, an RTC (residential treatment center) can be appropriate. Now we take a journal with a modern Alma prodigal and his family through this painful journey:
Alma and his mother were able to combat drug and other behavioral/addictive issues through the all-encompassing scope of behavioral learning theory. We will journey with these characters as they use various methods of discipline and behavioral learning, and find how the puzzle pieces fit. They will not find success in the far left or far right of behavior strategies, but a middle ground solution found at a rehab will help John find himself at last as he adopts transparency, builds sober positive relationships, and is forced to be sober for a few months.
His mom was anxious all the time, “Will my son live or die today?” Alma has been involved in drugs and various types of delinquency over the past year, and mother’s attempts to rehabilitate him through groundings, taking cell phones, moving to the other side of the state, sending him to live with his sibling, sending him to live with his other sibling, none of it had worked. Alma seemed to be on the pathway to destruction. The mom appealed to father who, though never really involved in Alma life since their divorce at his birth, said “Put em’ in jail.” Mom saw the two extremes and was torn as to what she should do: Keep Alma around, or lock him up. The one seems too far left, the other too far right. She doubted either would work. She foresaw her tender though embittered son falling into the all too common “just doin’ my time then I’m gone” attitude if she were to put him in jail. Would jail rehabilitate, or harden him? After all, Alma had repeatedly expressed in this his 17th year, that when 18 comes, he would be gone. If Alma spent the remainder of his 17th year in jail, would he feel pushed away from the family forever? If he spent the time at home, would he die of drug use, it being impossible to fully surveil him? Alma was in luck, because Mom’s bishop suggested a behavioral rehab for troubled youth. It would be a middle ground between home life and prison life, and could be a last stand to take back her son before he turns 18. Mom and the bishop agreed that this was not so simple as “jail”.
Alma’s mother was very sophisticated, and very kind. She was well versed in behavioral learning theory, but unlike many people, she recognized a need not just for behavior modification, but a need for love and agency, meaning autonomy and connection needed to be present, not just regulation. She loved him more than life itself, and knew that her love alone wasn’t enough to save him. She could give him all aspects of love, daily expressions, time together, and Alma knew his welfare was a covenant she had made. She needed outside help. Trying to be both mom and dad over the years would only take Alma so far. It was time for some atonement for the lack of father in the home, and for whatever else seemed to be pulling Alma away. After all, he used to be such a good boy. Something big, something bold, was about to happen.
When Alma left, she wept. Her heart shone through across the miles separating them via almost daily letters in the mail containing words of encouragement, keeping the relationship alive as best she could when time together was not possible, she still somehow managed to make almost daily expressions of her love and reminded Alma of her commitment to his welfare.
While Alma was gone, she reflected on their recent and complex past. She knew that consequences were not something easily mastered. As a lad, Alma obeyed her out of bribes of objects and opportunities, like the chance to have time with his friends, or the chance to have a trip to Taco Bell. When Alma did his chores, and kept the house rules including doing his homework, he knew benefits would come. Alma aged, and learned to respect his mother, and obeyed her for the sake of their relationship, without strings always attached. Mom had filled his life with pleasant things, emphasizing positive reinforcement for his good choices, while almost looking the other way when it came to his bad choices. But as Alma grew older, his relationships with his friends clouded the view of his relationships with family members, and mom could no longer obtain his obedience by mere asking. She had to remind him of the judgements of God, these moral/internal influences which meant that he had autonomy, and would have to answer to more than her, he would have to answer to God. When Alma ceased to respond to these, mom was out of options. Natural consequences helped him learn to beware crossing the street, and to favor mother’s closeness, and now they would be postponed until he faced God or his own conscience. Constructed consequences helped him not slack lest he get more chores, and now God would have to construct consequences for Alma. Random consequences would not help anything, mother was too wise for superstitions.
At rehab, Alma had a wakeup call. There was no more getting away with bad behaviors (except lying, which he soon found ineffective there). To graduate the program Alma had to make progress in the program, or he would be stuck there forever. But there was a problem. Alma was not willing to do the things the program wanted him to do for advancement. They seemed to have power to see through his lies, and he was not advancing. Eventually Alma decided that if he was ever going to come clean and rebuild his life, doing so in this isolated place might be a safe time to do it. He began to feel he had a chance to turn things around, and he ran with that hope. Being away from the girls, money, drugs, fancy clothes, for a while helped him see those things are fragile, and that the only way to keep happy was to get what he wanted in the upright honest way. Other methods failed time and again.
The rehab used continuous reinforcement with their negative punishment system. With security guards always keeping an eye on him, he could not break a single rule without losing what little freedoms he had left. At times the rehab even used positive punishment, applying unpleasant things like mandatory lectures he had to take notes on about dull subjects. The rehab used positive reinforcement when they rewarded him with the ability to participate in the basketball team as he didn’t attempt to run away. They used negative reinforcement when they removed some of the negative aspects of the rehab, such as going easy on the shower time limit rule.
The rehab brought Alma a chance to have his “wake-up call” by providing things which were not available at home, and which were not available at a prison. Things like recreation therapy, equine therapy, inpatient therapists who highly survey the students’ life, interaction with other adolescents whom had made progress in their journey (communication with “low level” students was forbidden to new students and other low level students), group therapy with others in the rehab, an opportunity to plan his future, and other meaningful experiences. The prison would only offer regulation, whereas the rehab helped offer love and autonomy as well. They even offered spirit in their weekly optional bible studies which Alma opted to attend, remembering the gospel to be a key to his mother’s love and covenant to tend to his welfare.
Alma looked up to the recovering students whom were in the upper levels of the program about to graduate. Not only were they about to be free, but they seemed to have truly changed their lives for the better. Alma learned to love these people as they loved him first. They often had a similar background as himself, and if they could be strong, so, perhaps, could he. For a while, Alma saw a variable ratio reinforcement situation, seeing that he could lie about some small rule breaking and get away with it now and then, but looking up to the higher levels who said, “full honesty is needed to progress or you’ll never make it, I’ve tried the other way and it doesn’t work”, Alma realized that this would be true to his life, not just his program. He started to remember what he knew all along, and finally understood the message his mother and other loved ones had told him across the years, that he can be free and happy as he makes good choices, no short cuts. For the first time in his life, Alma made through confessions, and felt a great burden leave him as he walked toward recovery, and lasting meaningful healthy relationships.
Everything was coming together for Alma. He began to understand that extinction of bad patterns is possible as he lived sober for a time, even if it was forced sobriety. He no longer required substances to manage daily troubles and relationships. He realized that his therapist had been shaping him toward confession, and that shaping lead him to tell of important parts of his life to his mother which he deemed he would take with him to the grave, which only hell itself would force him to reveal. Betraying the love of his mother would be too severe, she would never know about the depth of the bad choices he was making until he was safely locked in hell, and she safely locked in heaven. Somehow, with an assignment to write his “100 favorite lies”, and other assignments which brought an aspect of behavior chains to his attention, Alma learned he could avoid the bad and keep the good; at length, Alma’s therapist convinced him to write his 12-page confession letter home. It was the hardest thing he had ever done, his mother being the most angelic person he had ever known, and his childhood memories with her the only thing more precious to him than scandalous time with his “friends.” Would confessing sever him from her? Though his choices lead him away from her, he could not face that reality. His therapist helped him face that reality, and showed him how he could keep what was most dear to him.
- Foster children are CRAZY / DANGEROUS.
2. Foster children can’t CHANGE.
3. Foster kids will never feel a real part of MY family, even if we adopt them.
4. The LOSS of caring for a child and returning them to their parents is too much for me.
5. I know a foster parent, and they’re still waiting for a placement. DEMAND for foster parents must not be very big.
6. Being a foster parent would be too DRAINING.
7. I can’t FINANCIALLY afford to take in or adopt children.
8. Level 2 and 3 foster children, as well as sibling groups, are too hard, and should be avoided.
9. I don’t have TIME to foster children, I already have children of my own.
10. I can’t take in more children because I want to focus on “quality not quantity” for the children I already have.
…Now let me explain…
- Foster children are CRAZY / DANGEROUS.
Well… actually no, they’re kids, and they have as much capacity to love and be loved as anyone. When my wife and I got foster children, it quickly occurred to us, “oh, they’re just kids!” We don’t need to label them as “foster children”. They are just “children”. At the end of the day, the only label we should put on anyone is “child of God.” I hear parents say that they don’t want their other children to be molested or taught bad habits by foster children being introduced to their homes. Though it might seem harsh to you, a reality is that you can tell your case worker that the placement is not going to work for your family. Even if some placements won’t be ok for you, you don’t have to denounce fostering altogether. Also, when you sign up for fostering, you fill out a form that says which behaviors you’re willing to have in your placements. For example, if you don’t want a child with a drug or pornography addiction or who is sexually active or physically abusive, you can check boxes letting your case worker know that those type of placements are best suited elsewhere. There are plenty, I would say the majority, of foster children who don’t fall into these categories. Even those who do have serious behavioral issues, those can change! Think of the environment they were in, versus the environment they will be in at your home. Trust that the new environment (including love) will change their lives for the better in big ways! Therapy will be provided too. Throughout your journey as a foster parent, your list of what can and can’t enter your home may change, but it’s always up to you. Further, your biological children can be plenty crazy too! You can’t always discern if a child is going to have bad behaviors later in life, but the same goes for your biological children. Parenting in general involves risk taking, but alas, it involves even more inspiration and power.
2. Foster children can’t CHANGE.
Well… Let’s use a phrase Thomas Monson liked to say, “A leopard can’t change it’s spots, but men aren’t leopards, and they change every day.” Humans are extremely resilient creatures, and can even heal from the trauma of being transplanted. Remember the Lord’s vineyard, he grafts where he will, and works to create fruit in his mysterious way. God’s power is strong enough to heal. Also, not all foster children even need to change! Just because they’ve been thrown into the system doesn’t mean they’re going to have intense behavioral problems. You’ll be surprised at how quickly they can adapt and overcome behavioral issues. Rest assured that you don’t have to be the perfect parent to bring needed change into your foster or adopted child’s life. As you create a relationship with each child, you’ll be giving them great power.
3. Foster kids will never feel a real part of MY family, even if we adopt them.
Well… The scriptures have a theme of adoption, perhaps a most common theme! Scattering, gathering, grafting, adopting to the House of Israel, isn’t that the whole point of Jesus Christ? Also, Heavenly Father and Mother are the universal parents of us all, and we can all bond under their parentage. “Biological” children? Well, as you raise your child, you effect their biology in the brain and everywhere else. They wouldn’t be the same without you, just like any other child. Also, a biological child can be very different from its parents. If your foster children are from a different culture or race, don’t let that get to you. Everyone will embrace them, and you’ll find love for them and appreciation for the unique things they bring to your family. Children who look different than their parents can learn to deal with that, and both the parent and child can be better for it, getting a head start on tolerance and love. There is no such thing as a superior race.
4. The LOSS of caring for a child and returning them to their parents is too much for me.
Well… “To have loved and lost is better than to never have loved at all.” Looking for refugees? Here they are! You can tell them, “We are going to have you stay with us while your parents are taking some time to practice. You might stay here, but we’re trying to help your parents get ready to have you back. We will do what’s best for you, and we will have a good time!” This is a hard thing to tell a child, but it’s their reality, and you’re going to make it better for them than they can possibly imagine.
5. I know a foster parent, and they’re still waiting for a placement. DEMAND for foster parents must not be very big.
Well… Most foster parents only want an infant and only 1 of them. If you don’t have these barriers, there are tons of foster children waiting for temporary and permanent homes. However great your loss of caring for a child and letting it go, it isn’t as big as the loss the child is experiencing. If you’re willing to be involved in whatever comes to this child, you’ll be transferring some of the loss that child will have to bear upon your own shoulders. God will succor both the foster child, and the foster parent, until their cups are overflowing.
6. Being a foster parent would be too DRAINING.
Well… There’s a magic secret here that I’ll compare to being a full time missionary. Remember how happy you were despite being busy? Remember how things always seemed to work out despite all? Remember feeling close to Jesus Christ every hour? Remember having strength to do things you never before thought possible? Fostering is the best kept secret: full time missionary service for married young people without stacks of money set aside for full time parenting! Foster kids give you more than you give them. Children are magic, and foster children are no different. At first your capacity to care for children (and children with special needs) will be small, but as sure as anything, it will grow, along with your capacity to experience joy!
7. I can’t FINANCIALLY afford to take in or adopt children.
Well… This is a serious concern, but I’ll tell you some things that will help. If you have a child / children who have significant behavior issues which will directly correlate to increased costs, the state will likely give you a permanent post-adopt subsidy which will cover or at least highly supplement these costs. Additionally, while fostering, there will always be a stipend to help cover food and other costs. We think of adopting children as something rich people do, hearing about tens of thousands in adoption fees, but if you adopt via foster care, it’s free and the state will always give them medicate until they are age 18.
8. Level 2 and 3 foster children, as well as sibling groups, are too hard, and should be avoided.
Well… If children come as siblings, they’ll have people they love who understand what they’re going through, this will help them adapt to your home. Higher level children are classed that way sometimes because they’ve been in a number of foster homes without finding a permanent placement. This could be because the homes they were previously in were only transition homes, or there was a clash with siblings, or the placement wasn’t intended to be permanent. None of these mean the children are inherently unrecoverable, or that you can’t help them in your home!
9. I don’t have TIME to foster children, I already have children of my own.
Well… Children take care of each other. They become each other’s best friends, entertainers, and helpers. I think having 1 child would be the hardest number since they would always be begging for your attention, having no other immediate and available playmates. As for meals, increasing meals to accommodate more people is much easier than the transition from having no children to 1 child. As for housing, did you know they make triple bunk beds? Also, let your kids play outside if you’re worried about housing space. Harvard professors say that the world is safer today than ever, so just don’t watch too much television, and you’ll feel fine about letting your kids play outside. “Many hands make light work”, and yes, this applies to children.
10. I can’t take in more children because I want to focus on “quality not quantity” for the children I already have.
Well… Think about the kind of life these kids are having in the foster system (basically orphans). Giving 10 people basic needs (like nutrition & love) is better than giving 5 people the skill of playing a piano. Will the eternal soul of your child be in jeopardy if they don’t have private tutors in each subject, and all the best for Christmas? No. However, will the eternal soul of your child be in jeopardy if they never learn to share, to love people different than themselves, to be patient, to serve the poor? Being a sibling is a great scenario to learn those critical traits.
Perhaps foster parenting is not for everyone, but I submit that it’s for more people than most people think. The need is there. Who will answer while it stands? Once you start foster parenting, you wonder why you lived so long without it (and so will the kids you take in). The memories are precious, and as Shakespeare says, “it is better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all.” In an ideal world, kids are indeed raised by their married birth mother and birth father. Until that day, lets contribute in powerful LOCAL ways to bring world peace, remembering “Once I was a stranger.”
As it was said in General Conference, how we react to the refugees of our day will determine the destiny of our souls. “Being a refugee may be a defining moment in the lives of those who are refugees, but being a refugee does not define them. Like countless thousands before them, this will be a period—we hope a short period—in their lives… This moment does not define them, but our response will help define us.” (Refuge from the Storm By Elder Patrick Kearon Of the Seventy, https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/general-conference/2016/04/refuge-from-the-storm?lang=eng)
In the early days of the restoration of the gospel, two African sisters were converted, escaped slavery, and traveled 600 miles on back roads lest they be apprehended, traveling to join with the saints. They knocked on Joseph Smith’s door late one night, waking him and Emma. They related their account and said they had nowhere to go, and asked what they should do. Joseph looked to Emma and said, “Emma, these sisters say they have nowhere to stay. Is that true, Emma?” She responded, “No Joseph, they can stay here.” She was not treated in Joseph and Emma’s home as a slave or servant, but as one of the family. Joseph and Emma astonishingly often took people into their home, and often on very short notice.
The patients report hearing voices, and those are usually derogative voices and often tell them to hurt others or widdle self-esteem. So yes, I agree these are demons!
Some of our mental patients have less agency and many of them are innocent, but also many of them have “permanent” mental illness because of drug abuse. Granted there is a root cause of drug abuse like depression or loneliness etc., but the punishment for turning to these bad coping methods is obvious. Surely we can have pity and compassion for those who suffer with drug addiction. Again, we don’t judge because we don’t know, but it seems that either because of low faith of the patients, or low faith of the people in charge of the patients, the healings are rare.
Family members should always do all they can by way of exercising faith to heal their family members, but sometimes healings don’t come. Perhaps the “works of God” being manifest in the ill client is also manifest not only in healings, but in the increased compassion the caretakers have the choice to develop from shepherding that ill family member / friend.
Seeking spiritual healing, I think, cannot be done by the government. It would be priestcraft. Spiritual healing must be voluntarily entered into by the client, or by the family members of the client if the client is incapable of seeking them himself.
Currently we have state funded and operated mental hospitals. The one in Utah is in Provo, called the Utah State Hospital. The issue here is that we have mentally ill citizens which people aren’t willing to help, so the government picks up the slack. The only way to optimal mental health treatment is through private organizations, particularly churches when families are unable. In a Zion society, I believe the focus is much less on state welfare, and much more on volunteerism, particularly based in religious operations. Historically it was so in America and elsewhere. Sure reform has been needed, but not toward socialism. The family must rise up in strength and charity such as this generation has not known.
I am happy to report that recently I saw a person at the mental hospital who was active in the church, praying etc. often, and he was miraculously set free from the hospital; out of the blue the judge decided to let him go, and I attribute this to the boy’s faith, which perhaps he had developed during his hospital stay.
Granted other patients have faith too but aren’t let go or fully healed, despite their efforts to seek spiritual healing. Again, this could be to teach them and their care givers patience. Whatever happens, we serve God and bless His name, knowing the blessings will eventually come in this life, the millennium, or in the life to come.
Another note on this topic is that we likely agree that the SSRI’s antidepressants SNRI’s MAOI’s etc. have many toxic side effects, many of which are covered up by the powers that be. Joel Skousen says perhaps the worse side effect of these drugs is that the “diminished conscience”; that they quiet the whispers of the Holy Ghost. In extreme cases when alternatives have been exhausted and the patient has already established nutritional excellence, medication may be required.
I also find it interesting that most psychotropic meds are absolutely toxic for pregnant women, and perhaps Satan is using these sometimes “easy out” drugs as a way to get women to not have children. I also note that rates of suicide are far lower among married women and mothers than among single women, so Satan could be giving them these false fixes rather than the lasting healing which can take place in the satisfactory lifestyles of family creation which God sent us to Earth to have.
The withdrawal from psychotropics also often is connected to symptoms of illness even worse than the illness being treated in the first place. It looks like the Devils signature on the contract: if you try to leave, you’ll go through hell.
I also note that inasmuch as they are effective and safe, psychotropic meds can be useful for extreme cases. Much progress is being made in this field of research, but given the politically conspiratorial and Satanic influence in these sciences, the progress is slow. I only suggest using these as a very last resort. Big pharma etc. don’t tell people about alternative treatment, and the field of nutrition is demonized. Further, many people are unwilling to make personal life changes needed to improve their mental health, like diet, exercise, spiritual repentance, obedience to God, etc. The D&C specifically points to use of herbs, and there are other methods of healing too (not energy healing; the church handbook specifically says to avoid this).
My favorite outspoken person on the dangers of psych drugs is Anne Blake Tracey of drugawareness.org. She has published several books and has documented hundreds of cases of domestic violence directly related to use of psychotropic drugs. She has interesting lectures on YouTube and at latterdayconservative.com in the downloads section.
In recent news, it’s of interest that Robin Williams’ suicide occurred when they put him on dopamine related drugs for his Parkinson’s Disease. He dealt with his depression for years but when they messed with his dopamine is when he was too far off balance and took his life.
First, I acknowledge that much good can come of mental health treatment, and mental issues are often real and needing serious attention like we would give to physical illness (as taught by Elder Holland in his address “Like a Broken Vessel” https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2013/10/like-a-broken-vessel?lang=eng). Any opportunity to serve others in a genuine way is of the Lord. I will discuss in this essay higher ways we can help each other as we climb out of the modern broken system of mental health treatment. I will talk about a mass exodus of sociological thought from government and professional intervention/welfare, to family centered intervention/welfare.
-If you need professional mental help, seek it from someone of your own faith (though that certainly won’t guarantee you proper treatment as the established norms of the field itself are so controversial and often downright immoral). Avoid conscience numbing psychotropics at all cost, using them in the rarest of cases after having researched and implemented alternative solutions thoroughly in addition to taking serious control of your BMI and other basic health standards. Understand that the body can heal. Do not assume that medication must be used indefinitely. The scarry thing is that in medicine, just like government, the more you use it in crisis, the less likely it is to ever go away. Nutrition can often bring healing surpassing what physicians are allowed to confess. Read Joel Fuhrman’s plant based whole foods studies on that topic (www.drfuhrman.com). Counseling will generally take you further than dopamine and serotonin etc. modifying psychotropics. Also read Anne Blake Tracy head of the International Coalition for Drug Awareness (www.drugawareness.org), which exposes toxic effects of psychotropics.
-In the days of the great patriarchs, men and women could preside over their families and be their councilors, including being each other’s councilors. Such is not always the case today, but the coming of the Lord will prove to be a season where men and women again learn to take upon themselves the glorious mantles of righteous presiders, assuming the entire government of their clan (posterity). Well does the Doctrine and Covenants teach that Zion will be redeemed by the faith of the fathers. This is the song we are to sing when the Lord comes: “The Lord hath brought again Zion; The Lord hath redeemed his people, Israel, according to the election of grace, which was BROUGHT TO PASS BY THE FAITH AND COVENANT OF THEIR FATHERS” (D&C 84:99). Family (including extended family) (not government and professionals) are the original intent of the Lord for the operation of the redemption of Zion. Truly God Himself is the head of a family, and is positioning us to follow the eternal pattern of family-based government. President Packer has warned against the reliance upon professionals for mental health in his lecture “Self Reliance” (the lecture would have better been titled “Emotional Self Reliance” as this was the subject of the majority of the lecture).
-The aspiring person with desires to heal and unite people will have a greater impact by focusing on family rather than focusing on professional mental health treatment. President Kimball taught that the real need in the world is not for more therapists but for more and stronger families. Professional roles must always take the back seat compared to family roles when it comes to our aspirations to benefit the human race. See also my document “Therapist VS Father as Saviors of Mankind: A Particular Family Size Theory”.
The order of professional mental health is a religion, seeking to find the why of an otherwise unexplainable universe, a why which they insist cannot involve a creator. They believe not in the repentance of sin, nor that there is sin, nor that there is punishment for crimes by anything but the state. Indeed, their views of atheism are dogmatic, and rather than being fair, they are promoting a one-sided religion of faithlessness. This religion is complete with temples (schools, hospitals), priesthood offices (professors, therapists, social workers, law makers, lobbyists, psychiatrists, etc.), rites (degrees, certifications, licensures), ceremonies (graduation, etc.), faith based (not research based) doctrines (focus on the self, hedonism, free use of the body, majesty of the state, moral Darwinism, organic evolution, transgenderism, etc.), promise of salvation (government welfare, deletion of theology and assurance of the absence of moral requirements), and every other component of any other organized religion known to man. Priest craft is practiced openly and flagrantly, charging large fees for small counseling sessions which were formerly accomplished by one’s spouse, parents, trusted peers of intelligence, and ecclesiastical leaders. These secular preachers are only forbidden one thing: mentioning the name of Jesus Christ in their sermons.
-the training for practice in the field is utterly devoid of substance and intelligent information, so they spend their time training on “what is the initiatory phase vs the working phase”, the difference between empathy and sympathy, the types of communication, and other useless trap. Rather than feeding the minds of intelligent beings with intricate mechanical processes founded on the laws of physical science or even true psychology, they stuff the students with doctrines of idleness and entitlement, which greatly dulls the will of man and leaves the candidates bored and void of purpose, who then themselves become menaces to society, and the blind lead the blind perpetually.
The few things that can be useful in treatment should be taught on site, rather than in years and riches of college educations which are increasingly liberal and fluff. When they do require rigorous study, it is usually of bias studies and trivial philosophies and professionalist formatting jungles.
Most mental health professionals and facilities cannot exist without the heavy reliance on medications which hush the conscience, and promise a stress-free easy-going life, where minimal growth can occur.
They give no heed to herbal and wholistic remedies which actually work. They are rather in bed with big pharma in keeping patients chained down to expensive medications which they cannot afford or manage on their own, thus keeping them forever captives to the state and welfare therefrom. They seek to ban and discredit herbal remedies at every turn. Hippocrates was in favor of using official cures which don’t work in favor of unofficial herbal ones which do (see Baker “Science & Religion).
They diagnose many as ill who are really healthy; We have seen the diagnostics pamphlet change into a large textbook, where one can find any successful person. Further, they suggest any amount of stress is unhealthy, and thus even if subliminally, discourage work, their scale of mental health being a scale of stress from 0-100, 0 being no stress full health. Labeling everyone and their dog with a mental illness is a way to target people for confiscation of firearms and a broad spectrum of other rights. Once they have you pinned to a diagnosis, you are a tagged rat, and they watch you, making negative predictions about your behavior based on your diagnosis. They tell you limitations about what you can accomplish based on the stereotype of those who they’ve labeled similarly. If you were to swap the labels on the rats, the students and professors would suggest the opposite, and there are many self-fulfilling prophecies (or at least self-fulfilling statistical analysis) in this regard. Health professionals are tied to diagnosed labels even when evidence points to the contrary. They often teach a “once ill always ill” doctrine in the mental health world, pinning people down to decades of therapists and medications rather than trying to solve problems and teach self reliance. They are further hesitant to try things outside of the normal parameters of how to treat people with that specific diagnosis.
They make confusing models, the which are not based on fact, but opinion, and if you were to swap around the positions and titles of the subsections of those diagrams, you could make just about as much sense of them as you could in the first place. What they call science there is usually just abstract art, wherein one has to make a meaning for himself, as no real intrinsic meaning there stands. It is not like realism in art, not classical portrayal of reality, but a fictitious deranged conglobulation of semi-facts jumbled together to make some vomit of a mess which, if you do not appreciate, you are considered intolerant, bigoted, uninformed, and unable to discern things of true or higher intelligence. Truly bad art (and bad science) reflect an immoral society, who seeks something more deranged than themselves so they can feel good about the chaos that is their lives (thanks, Picasso).
The boards of committees which approve what gets published in academic journals are highly politically bias. God forbid someone show the benefits of a stay at home mother, or the dangers of homosexuality for children, or the insanity of transgenderism (and obviously, the trend to perform a sex change without parental consent is another sign of the obvious march toward alien-like lifestyles.)
They outlaw words to show that they have power over thought, muting opinions of those who do not comply to their created whimsical definitions of reality, including the titling of a male as a female, or the same sex relation as one of gaiety (“gay”), changing “committing suicide” into “dying by suicide” (being more accepting of suicide as a “lifestyle” choice rather than looking upon it as a horrid crime), or a multitude of other nonsensical ideas. Their agendas are clearly manifest when it comes to sexualizing children and obliterating the family ties and affections in order to turn more power into the hands of the state as seen in the book “Brave New World” by Aldous Huxley, and “1984” by George Orwell.
They base their calculations in Darwinism, and otherwise organic evolution, suggesting that humans are more animals than divine, and thus seek to excuse vial behavior rather than to remediate it.
The general theories of Freud and others like him are pure fairy tale, not based in scientific evidence, and often found to be hushing facts, and loading bias research sample sizes and populations.
A license is required for about everything now. Translation? We are not free. The government has lost its role of keeper of the peace, and has assumed the role of Lord God Almighty, except this false god of government mirrors the ways of Satan more than the ways of Jesus Christ (in that it’s ways are of forcing others to do things way rather than letting people have the freedom to operate in a free market according to the dictates of their own conscience; barriers to enter the market are tall tell signs of communism). They are suspicious of conservatives, as the professors are almost entirely liberals. The schools are one sided. The anti-capitalism liberal spirit in the mental health field today promotes fairness rather than competition and greatness, equal opportunity rather than striving for personal excellence, and receiving rather than giving and creating. Though they call conservatives/capitalists selfish, they are in fact the ones selfishly taking from one and giving to another. Read Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand for more on that. Charities formerly functioned to help the poor before people voted in government to do it. Now we have no feeling of natural affection to care for the needs of our neighbor and the poor among us, since we justify ourselves in saying a penny of our tax dollar will feed them. We have all seen how ineffective and wasteful government is compared to private business. For example, the Latter-day Saints are usually on scene before government relief workers. Citizens are picking up trash at national parks during shutdowns where government employees do not do it. See also Ben Shapiros video presentation on how democratic socialists aren’t what they hype up to be, but are the same run of the mill socialists, historically famous, like popular Che, for murdering millions. Socialism and communism are two ways of getting the same thing, the one (socialism) being slavery we vote for, and the other (communism) being slavery we are compelled into. Both lead to slavery.
With the great shift of state to federal government as chief in power, control of issues is moving from local to remote, and less of the policies enforced upon councilors are actually effective to the local population they are being delivered to.
-the focus of meeting social needs of people must be brought back to the family. We must return the focus to the family. We have mandatory college classes on how to be nice to people, a sign that there is no confidence in the family. If the family dies, so will everything else, no matter how elaborate the public training programs and certifications. May your focus be on your home. The impact you have on people out of your home is a fraction of a percent compared to the vast impact you have on those inside your home. Yes reach outward and beyond even to the ends of the earth, but keep your focus and your heart on your home. The home as it now stands is usually a place of spineless enabling of bratty children without siblings who never have to work and are never pushed to really learn anything beyond passing from one grade of low bar public training schools to the next. Yes, if that were the substance of the home, I too would say let’s go find something else. But the real home, the home which corrects these great flaws, this is a home of excitement and compelling growth and progress for adults and children alike. President Packer said no one owes children entertainment. As Elder Holland said, second only to your love, your children need your limits.
The state sets a low bar in the name of tolerance, attempting to not offend. They march under the banner of “everyone is different” rather than the banner of “everyone can become great if they conform to moral standards”. The larger the state gets, the smaller our morals at large become. Well have the prophets taught that a virtuous people need few rulers, and that only a virtuous people can be governed under the system of the divine US Constitution. Don’t just be yourself, be your best self – the self that Christ knows you can be.
We are lost in the endless depths of defining and confining every human behavior and hobby rather than relying on the “this is good, that is bad” which used to guide us so universally. We are ever learning but never finding the truth. A therapist listens but doesn’t teach. Suggests, but never directs. The therapist is ambiguous, and supports clients in various lifestyles, some of which are truly toxic and ultimately non-working. Why do we trust these therapists? What authority do they have to do this? Permission from the state is far too low of a bar for the saints in where they look for counsel.
Where conscience once held all things, now all falls apart, and we dissect things which need not dissecting. We ignore things which should not be ignored. Every important thing we look away from, and we fill the void of our souls by feasting upon the useless nothingness that is the endless definitions of political correctness and the preferences of the vain. We make things complex which were once understood. We write endlessly on the most simple of subjects, and say that the whole of our massive writings amount to the summum bonum of knowledge, when they are in reality a pile of chaff which looks large but easily blows away in the wind. We cover our cowardice and ignorance by vast piles, yes even mountainous piles of scholarly essays, academic articles, and trumping about minor trivialities, swallowing the camel and straining at the gnat. We leave no room for holiness. We study and are tested on things which really have no right answer, and we pride ourselves in selecting a supposed best option among many correct options, when that option really isn’t a best option, but is only a whim of a professor who had a certain flavored cereal that morning, which lead him to select that option over the other. The professors are pleased if you write something quite liberal, and if you write as a conservative, you’re called antiscientific and demonized. We pretend like we know something, when we’re really just escaping work. We create endless bureaucratic positions doing ever more trivial work. An example of this is our endlessly long tax codes, and other long bills full of garbage which we pretend to adhere to as our law. So, have textbooks become full of hype and drag nothingness filling our students with boredom and anti-American sentiments. Perhaps never before have we seen a group of people with so little to say take so long to say it. The reason common sense is no longer common is the dissolution of the family. Children must see an adult male and an adult female working together in perfect harmony as a typical symbol of what the human race in general can be, people who build things intelligently. Without the role models seen in family, including grandparents etc., children will indeed be at a loss of how to function, regardless of how much other social training they receive. How could you possibly teach morality in a classroom setting, especially a classroom which denies the existence of independent facts defined by empirical data rather than feelings? Alas, be gone professors and clinicians, scholars and bureaucratic goons! Give us Zion families in their strength, and we will heal the minds of the people.
As we deal with fragile mental health situations, we must have compassion on those who sorrow. Even the depths of depression are not entirely uncommon to the human experience. Some suffer with depression longer than others however, and we must be careful in how we deal with these delicate situations.
Jesus Christ was “a man of sorrows, acquainted with grief.” (Isaiah 53:3)
Joseph Smith had his head downcast on a certain occasion, and someone said to him that he ought to look up and keep his head up. Joseph responded by saying that a stalk of wheat which has much wheat inside will droop from the weight of it. He then said that his head had glorious things in it. (See Truman G Madsen lectures on Joseph Smith)
Jesus weeps for Lazarus, and isn’t smiling on that occasion. He gets angry at priests, and isn’t smiling then either. he sweats blood in Gethsemane and isn’t crying then either. Jesus is described and being meek and lowly of heart, and commands us to be that way as well, even to have a broken heart and a contrite spirit. We are to reach past the shallow level of constant optimism (Elder Hafen of the 70; BYU Devotional “Love is not blind”).
“Weep for your dead” (D&C 42:45), comfort who needs comforting (Mosiah 18). That implies that in Zion there will be weeping and the need of comfort. There will be dying, which comes from illness and depression, and those things produce sorrow (until the millennium when sorrow ceases because death ceases (Rev. 21:4).
Adam and Eve needed to leave Eden to experience sorrow.
Some sorrow is not our fault. Jesus taught offenses must come but wo to them by whom they come .
A sport team isn’t always smiling, whereas the end goal of their sport is to have joy.
Job experienced depression. “Why died I not from the womb? why did I not give up the ghost when I came out of the belly…for the thing which I greatly feared is come upon me, and that which I was afraid of is come unto me.” “my days…are spent without hope.” “My soul is weary of my life.”
Prophet George Albert Smith experienced depression (see Elder Holland “Like a broken vessel” General Conference Address.)
Elder Holland experienced depression (above cited).
Everyone experiences some level of anxiety, and even serious peaks in anxiety, this is probably different than a clinical disorder which is a more frequent and different breed of anxiety. Some anxiety, even intense anxiety, is positive for our growth.
In the great Millennium, “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.” (Rev. 21:4)
Insisting on constant happiness is toxic, and is not how God lives. Enoch saw God weeping over his creations: “28 And it came to pass that the God of heaven looked upon the residue of the people, and he wept; and Enoch bore record of it, saying: How is it that the heavens weep, and shed forth their tears as the rain upon the mountains?
29 And Enoch said unto the Lord: How is it that thou canst weep, seeing thou art holy, and from all eternity to all eternity?
30 And were it possible that man could number the particles of the earth, yea, millions of earths like this, it would not be a beginning to the number of thy creations; and thy curtains are stretched out still; and yet thou art there, and thy bosom is there; and also thou art just; thou art merciful and kind forever;
31 And thou hast taken Zion to thine own bosom, from all thy creations, from all eternity to all eternity; and naught but peace, justice, and truth is the habitation of thy throne; and mercy shall go before thy face and have no end; how is it thou canst weep?
32 The Lord said unto Enoch: Behold these thy brethren; they are the workmanship of mine own hands, and I gave unto them their knowledge, in the day I created them; and in the Garden of Eden, gave I unto man his agency;
33 And unto thy brethren have I said, and also given commandment, that they should love one another, and that they should choose me, their Father; but behold, they are without affection, and they hate their own blood;
34 And the fire of mine indignation is kindled against them; and in my hot displeasure will I send in the floods upon them, for my fierce anger is kindled against them.
35 Behold, I am God; Man of Holiness is my name; Man of Counsel is my name; and Endless and Eternal is my name, also.
36 Wherefore, I can stretch forth mine hands and hold all the creations which I have made; and mine eye can pierce them also, and among all the workmanship of mine hands there has not been so great wickedness as among thy brethren.
37 But behold, their sins shall be upon the heads of their fathers; Satan shall be their father, and misery shall be their doom; and the whole heavens shall weep over them, even all the workmanship of mine hands; wherefore should not the heavens weep, seeing these shall suffer?” (Moses 7:28-37).
For additional study, a General Conference lecture on God wiping away all tears which is applicable to this topic, see the 2016 October conference.
Chapter Meth the Permanent Brain Frier, Marijuana The Gateway, & other Insights from Cleon Skousen on Instant Insanity Drugs (revisit the cleon lecture specify which drugs was talking about, just1?)
The most shocking thing I learned while working at the at the Utah State Hospital in Provo (a mental hospital) was that most people are there not for natural mental illness, but as a result of drug abuse! Think of that: your entire life and freedom, gone for the whims of a few temporary thrills! They get fried from meth and are permanently mentally disabled. The head psychiatrist at this hospital says that when people have schizophrenia from natural means, we can use drugs to treat much of that; but when someone has it as a result of drug use, there is little that can be done even with drugs, because there is no brain to work with; the brain is fried.
The other interesting thing is that the common thread among these patients is that marijuana was the gateway drug that got them into the harder stuff.
Marijuana is so bad and the gateway drug for this reason: it introduces the concept of getting something for nothing. The idea that you can experience pleasure without working for it, without a moral character. Then the mind is lead to think “that was the easiest fun I’ve ever had. I will go and find more easy fun.” Then all values fall away. Everything that used to be the framework for happiness drowns in the background of their new-found hypnosis. They spend their time swimming in the deception that their life is of value because they are experiencing pleasure, all the while they have reduced themselves to a corpse plugged into the matrix, vegetating day by day, approaching their death without ever having really lived.
The marijuana users find themselves saying “here is the life! why was I wasting time on that other garbage like work, ethics, social skills, honesty, industry, patience and faith? Everything I need is RIGHT HERE.” So they throw in the towel and disbelieve everything any authority figure or positive role model has told them, and they deliver themselves up to the wolves. Then when they think the meal is about to be served in this their new pack/tribe, they find out they ARE the meal. Of course then it’s too late.
For a book on how marijuana itself, not even meth, can cause mental illness and violence, read “Tell Your Children: The truth about marijuana, mental illness, and violence” by Alex Berenson.
- One user boasted of not having ill effects from taking it and slashed out the eyes of her son
- One boy used it then found himself in jail and asked what have I done raped someone? He had killed his mother.
- Some young users ran into a home killing a baby
- One boy saw himself become a monster and his family become monsters, he screams and jumped a window falling 13 stories and dying
- 1/20 of first-time users have terrible nightmare experiences, but one never knows when it could happen in their continued use.
- Many go to mental institutions for prolonged time for using it.
- Even 2 years after using the drug reports have been received of the user being in hallucinations and depression.
- University labs have distributed it.
- A potent dose of it is colorless tasteless and odorless and is microscopic.
- In one ounce there are 280,000 doses.
- One ounce would be worth about 1,400,000$.
- Sometimes it’s kept in bottles named mouth wash, or in solid forms, or in sugar cubes, chewing gum, or gum flaps of envelopes, or in a cigarette holding 50,000 dollars’ worth.
- International Liberation for Internal Freedom was a formal cultist group lead by college professors organizing people in acid usage.
- “The League of Spiritual Discovery” was a religion made by a Dr. to allow him to use these drugs he made this religion.
- LSD takes away the personality of a person, turning them into a mental vegetable with no desire to set goals and struggle.
- An ounce of LSD could cause 300,000 people to be mentally disoriented, hence it’s considered a lethal war weapon.
- “The Beyond Within” speaks of an LSD attack to a city and its effects; in 1/2 a day another city could take them over easily.
- 60% of users who have a “bad trip” have to be committed to metal hospitals.
- LSD can affect the chromosomes of the user, effecting the offspring of the user.
- LSD causes users to feel like they should not exist, and to start to use heroin etc.
- Heroin users often get to the point where 75$ a day are required to feed the addiction
- Heroin users when don’t have their drug the body violently reacts.
- Marijuana is classified as a sedative
- Marijuana brings sexual promiscuity
- Marijuana causes brazen disregard of other people
- Marijuana causes some users to become permanently insane.
- Withdrawal from heroin users are known to stay awake for weeks at a time and they rest only in states of a coma.
- Those who have been on heroine will often return to it even after going through withdrawals and what would appear to be the recovery product.
- These drugs are usually offered to youth by their close friends and peers rather than professional dealers
- One Policeman kept this from a heroin user, “King Heroin is my shepherd, I shall always want. He maketh me to lie down in the gutters.”
- Here’s a verse Cleon coined to show Satan’s care vs the Lords care as taught in the Psalms: “He leadeth me beside the troubled waters. He destroyeth my soul. He leadeth me in the paths of wickedness. Yea, I shall walk through the valley of poverty and will fear no evil for thou, Heroin, art with me. Thy needle and thy capsule comfort me. Thou strippest the table of groceries in the presence of my family. Thou robbest my head of reason. My cup of sorrow runneth over. Surely heroin addiction shall stalk me all the days of my life and I will dwell in the house of the damned forever.”
- All studies show that the youth involved in genuine religion don’t get involved in narcotics
- Studies show that those who get involved in narcotics are those who feel bored and not challenged in life
- Studies show that those youth who have positive peers close to them don’t get involved in narcotics.