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Friday, July 3, 2015

When a Family Member has a Chastity Problem

Dear Bro Jo,

I have a cousin who decided it would be okay to break the law of chastity.

She has done it once before, and repented of it, but I guess she didn't feel bad enough not to do it again with a different guy.

First, you should know her situation.

She lives in a wonderful LDS family in (location withheld) where many of her friends do not share her standards.

Her older brother has decided that the Church isn't for him and that he doesn't need it, and I think this is a big part of her problem.

She has one LDS friend, and this young girl worships the ground my cousin walks on and feels like she couldn't do anything wrong.

The only people who really hold her to her standards are her parents, but as hard as they try their influence cannot be everywhere.

She told me she loves this boy, and because she loves him it was okay to commit the sin she did, but I know that's not right.

Her parents, when they figured out, brought her out here to Utah to stay away from the boy and to be near family.

She has no way of communicating with this boy and feels like her parents are overreacting.

She doesn't feel a need to repent because she doesn't feel like what she did was a mistake.

How can I make her see that there are better things out there for her if she waits?

Now she might end up doing her senior year of high school here with me, which I would be glad to surround her with positive and uplifting people.

What scares me the most is that I think she's leaving God behind, and I don't want her to make that mistake.

How can I help her see that true happiness comes from the gospel and living in a way that makes our Heavenly Father proud?

I want her to meet other nice guys that share her standards, but I think she's so stuck on being "in love" with this one boy that she won't want to meet anyone else. Or even worse end up with a guy who isn't looking out for her.

I've never been in a situation like this before, and really I'm just looking for someway to help my cousin and keep her close to the things that truly matter.

If you have any suggestions I would love to hear them!

Thanks Much,

- Hoping to Help

Dear Hoping,

I feel sad for your cousin.

She's totally wrong, and being . . . well, stupid . . . but there's nothing you, I, or anyone else can "make her" do.

And even if we did, it wouldn't take. 

She's going to have to discover the things you know for herself.

On her own.

And until then all we can do is love her, help her to feel welcome and give her opportunities to learn the Gospel, grow her testimony, and be around good people.

So, without insulting her or getting frustrated or putting down her boyfriend, simply invite her (with no pressure) to do the things you're doing: Mutual, Group Activities, Game Nights, Movie Parties . . . all of that.

At some point she'll feel the weight of her sin, and that little sister, is when she'll need to be loved and understood the most.

Be Kind.

She'll follow.

And don't get frustrated if she turns down your invitations, especially at first.

Be Patient.

- Bro Jo

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