“I absolutely love that Joanne told her story
with accountability and humor. Her book is
witty, irreverent and very refreshing.”
I am all too familiar with the story the author tells in this book; being a polygamist and first wife myself. The title “It's Not About the Sex” My Ass is the best title I've ever seen on a book about polygamy! I don't typically read polygamy books because the “poor me” perspective gets very old. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying at all that there isn’t abuse, neglect, mind control, oppression etc because there absolutely is. I think the numerous female authors describe very well how difficult it is to stand up for ones self and “buck” the system. They describe honestly how threatening it is to leave a society who was once family and friends, but who then become haters if you start to question the religion. While everyone has their own perspective and experience, there has to be some degree of personal responsibility taken as well though, from men AND women both. I have been a member my entire life and am currently still a member so I feel very qualified to make such a statement. Just sayin’...
A few chapters in, as Joanne described finding and marrying wife number two, I was breathing into a paper bag, completely nauseated and hyperventilating, as my own long-buried memories came bubbling to the surface. It was fantastic to read a frank, honest account of the feelings one goes through when that event happens. I felt like she barely scratched the surface though. Personally, I was much more interested in her perspective of the everyday grind of being a polygamous wife rather than the activities of the group as a whole. When you struggle with a sister wife, husband or the leaders, you don’t dare speak about it openly because doing so would only show your lack of commitment and your weak testimony. You ought as well tattoo “I SUCK” across your forehead for all in your church to read so they can feel justified in their righteous judgement of you. Instead, you suck it up, berate yourself and feel shame and guilt for being so weak. Personally, I think it’s the women in the church who wield the mightiest sword against each other. Often it’s the women who will have you believing all of the problems are your fault and that you have no other recourse than to beg your husband and God for forgiveness of your petty weaknesses. The women truly are the “neck that turns the head.” ....... stepping down off my soap box now .....
I absolutely love that Joanne told her story with accountability and humor. Her book is witty, irreverent and very refreshing. Accepting, living and leaving polygamy is a complicated head trip, not one that is as cut and dry as it seems to casual observer. Joanne’s description of her journey is very entertaining. Well Done!