Book Review: Baring Witness: 36 Mormon Women Talk Candidly about Love, Sex, and Marriage

Book Review: Baring Witness: 36 Mormon Women Talk Candidly about Love, Sex, and MarriageBaring Witness: 36 Mormon Women Talk Candidly about Love, Sex, and Marriage by Holly Welker
Reading Challenges: Bookopoly 2017, COYER Blackout: Winter Storm, Single Ladies Reading Challenge

In Baring Witness , Welker and 36 Mormon women write about devotion and love and luck, about the wonder of discovery, and about the journeys, both thorny and magical, to humor, grace, and contentment. They speak to a diversity of life experiences: what happens when one partner rejects Church teachings; marrying outside one's faith; the pain of divorce and widowhood; the horrors of spousal abuse; the hard journey from visions of an idealized marriage to the everyday truth; sexuality within Mormon marriage; how the pressure to find a husband shapes young women's actions and sense of self; and the ways Mormon belief and culture can influence second marriages and same-sex unions. The result is an unflinching look at the earthly realities of an institution central to Mormon life.

This was an interesting book. I was raised in the Mormon religion. My mom was raised to be Mormon, but always felt different. I was no exception. My left religion and the Mormon religion up to me and for me to choose. I was baptized when I was 12, if I remember correctly. I practiced the religion for several years before deciding this was not the religion for me. With that said, it doesn’t mean that I will let others criticize and mock it. This means that because I understand it and have many family members who are devout Mormons, that I will correct you if you are wrong. There are quite a few things that I don’t agree with in this religion but I do not care to delve into those at the moment.

I digressed to explain about myself and my interest in this book.

I wanted to read this book to hear other LDS/Mormon women’s view on the topics. I wanted to see how many felt like I felt and I wanted to see how many did not feel any sort of way. I will not judge any of them, but particularly the ones who have had horrible times and yet stayed because even though we know some of their story, we do not know it all.

It was very interesting to read how these women viewed sex, love and marriage. All the stories were honest and sincere. They all explained how they grew up and why they felt certain ways about marriage, in particular, especially the fact that many of the women couldn’t just be single (as they liked) because they were pressured constantly to get married. Some were unexpected, while many were just as I thought, but many were still different from the norm.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone, not just those of the Mormon religion. It was insightful at times. Yes, there were times of frustration, anger, discontent and amazement, but it was interesting nonetheless.


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