Was told by my bishop to confess to my RS president, but I don't think I'm ready. Need advice.

Fight the Good Fight

  1. melatonin

    melatonin Fapstronaut

    Hi, everyone! So, I have a problem. I've been meeting with my bishop for three weeks now for some guidance on how I can quit P and M and he recently told me that I should confess my issues to my Relief Society president. But I really don't feel emotionally ready for that. She's my roommate, but we don't know each other that well. So with these two things in mind I just don't know if I can confess to someone I live with and don't know well enough.
    And yes, I prayed about it. I asked God if there was another plan for me to overcome this habit (I don't know if I would call it an addiction since it seems there are people on here much more immersed in P and M than I am). I've thought about it, and I personally want to try doing individual mental health counseling and group counseling and possibly finding an accountability partner on this site. If I can go for a week without any form of P or M, I think I can get control of my habits enough that I don't need to meet with my RS president. I prayed about my ideas and feel like I received a fairly confirming feeling in either direction. Any advice on this?
    Azzure likes this.
  2. Tannhauser

    Tannhauser Fapstronaut

    Hey @melatonin

    Good for you for going to your Bishop!

    Bishop's have been receiving some instruction to try to include RS and EQ presidencies where possible, so that might be where his suggestion came from. However, I totally get where you are coming from - that would be very awkward and difficult!

    Maybe you could ask your bishop if there is something else that would work - perhaps working with a counselor in the RS presidency? Or maybe even going up to the Stake RS presidency? Or even one of your ministering sisters? That might not be easy (you probably don't know them that much either) but at least you don't live with them. And having an accountability partner in real life can make a big difference.

    Accountability partners on here, online coaches, and counseling are all great ideas! I would suggest talking to your bishop about your plan and counseling together about it.

    But I would suggest not using the threat to yourself of having to do something (like talking to the RS president) if you don't make it for a set amount of time. It shouldn't be a punishment, just an alternative route. For years I told myself "If I can just go for a month or two without any PMO, then I will be in control enough that I won't have to tell my wife. And if I do mess up, that's it - I'll tell her". Well, I never did tell her until she found out. And it was a mess. I wish I hadn't thought of it that way, and that I hadn't let shame get in the way of the one thing that has made the biggest difference in my recovery - being more open with my wife.

    I'm proud of you for all the work you're doing, and I'll be praying for you! Hang in there!!!
  3. melatonin

    melatonin Fapstronaut

    Thank you for the advice. You're right, I shouldn't use my fears as a bargaining chip to do better. Surprisingly, an hour ago I found an opening in one of the sexual behavior support groups for my area (which I was almost certain wasn't going to happen due to lack of members). So now I have a weekly group to go to! I'm still giving the RS president situation a lot of thought, but I think this is a sign from Heavenly Father that there are many ways I can go about gaining real-life support. Thank you for the prayers, knowing that someone out there is thinking of me really helps!
    Azzure and Tannhauser like this.
  4. Mindy

    Mindy Fapstronaut

    Hey! So @Tannhauser and I met on this site years ago and have become APs for each other off this site (and I hardly ever use this site anymore) but he texted me and mentioned your post and that I might have some good insight! I’m a female that struggles too and it’s been quite the battle. But I feel similar to you in that it doesnt really feel like an addiction to me because of the frequency of it happening compared to others. So I get you there. But I also understand that addiction or not, it’s still something that brings negativity to our lives so I can understand wanting to be done with it. If you need someone to empathize with and validate and give advice if needed, I would SO be happy to chat.
    Azzure, LEPAGE and Phantom Avalanche like this.
  5. Hi there Melatonin,
    I felt a little uncomfortable when I read that your Bishop has said that you, 'should confess' your issues to your RS President. Interesting senario. Here are my thoughts.

    In my 'opinion', a Bishop ought not to tell any soul what to do (D&C 121:41–43).
    The only people we need to 'confess' (sin) to is God, a Bishop, and any victim of our unrighteousness (Doctrine and Covenants 107:72, 74).
    Follow your gut feeling, if you feel uncomfortable doing something, don't do it. That includes telling a room mate (RS President or otherwise) about personal, intimate challenges. Like you, I too need to feel a connection with the person I'm going to tell personal things to. I need to trust that person.

    However, having said all of the above, and I do admit that I did have a knee-jerk kind of reaction to what you have written, I do believe the following wholeheartedly:
    “The Savior is often referred to as the Great Physician. … Guilt is to our spirit what pain is to our body—a warning of danger and a protection from additional damage. From the Atonement of the Savior flows the soothing salve that can heal our spiritual wounds and remove guilt. However, this salve can only be applied through the principles of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, repentance, and consistent obedience. The results of sincere repentance are peace of conscience, comfort, and spiritual healing and renewal.
    “Your bishop or branch president is the spiritual physician’s assistant who is authorized to help you repent and heal.”
    Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “We Believe in Being Chaste,” Ensign May 2013, 44.

    I may have taken what you wrote way out of context so feel free to correct me or tell me I'm wrong.

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