Sunday, January 24, 2010


at BYU are accurate. especially when it comes to dating and marriage. this was the most shocking thing to me when i arrived at the Y three septembers ago, the first sunday school class i attended in my freshman ward was about eternal marriage. since we were freshman the poor kid adapted it to be more along the lines of eternal families and the future rather than laying on the pressure from the get go, but still, there it was. it's no small secret that the highest goal other than high academic achievement is having the majority of students graduate with an eternal MR or MRS to cheer them on as they walk, with perhaps a baby or two on the hip. not going to hide it, i'm definitely a BYU baby- i remember attending my father's graduation. this is memorable because i had a new dress, my hair was curly, and i was CUTE! also, it was long and i hated it. plus we had to take pictures afterwords. gross! ;)

today we received our new ward directory which inspired this post. i think it's hilarious, i'm sorry if it reinforces any BYU haters deep seated disgust with the school (which i am not intending to diss in any way, i LOVE my school, this is just funny because all the things you hear about it are true).. anyway, this is what we have been given, as commentary and a joke about the reputation that ward directories have (you can see me on the bottom left. i'm in the second photo.):


so here we have our ward "menu" .. recently in-n-out burger opened a store in orem, it's lovely and everyone is obsessed. there are paid traffic directors in the parking lot for crowd control, i'm not kidding. anyway, this directory fits beautifully both the popularity of in-n-out as well as a huge stereotype that ward directories are "menus" for the "meat market" - also known as BYU singles wards. i am in awe at the creative, humorous minds that devised this. we see the front caption "quality you can marry," highlighting the point of the directory - to look over available options. i also think it's interesting that in-n-out is a burger joint.. essentially making fun of the fact that we are all "meat" (hamburger, specifically). GROSS! this semester's edition has the included feature of highlighting the interests/talents/hobbies of each person. this is lovely as it makes for a better selection of what is appealing and what is not.

i don't know where these ideas and disgusting terms came about, but it's funny and i am greatly amused by the obvious statement made by this directory.

other things i have learned about the dating culture here:

- if you go on a second date, it always means something.. wink wink
- people really do get engaged within 3 weeks of meeting each other. i've met and heard of several.
- there are people here who talk marriage before relationship. really.
- DTR (determine or discuss the relationship) is a real term and frequently happens around the 3rd-4th date
- for this point, oh man there are some things i REALLY wish i could say.. i'd be so bad if i did! ahh. i can't elaborate on this one though....
- general byu stereotype: it is a bubble. a happy bubble. a competitive bubble. a wonderful bubble. i'll be sad to leave.

i love BYU. i really really do. i can't imagine being anywhere else. it's a wonderful school, my education is excellent, the people (in general) are really really GOOD people. the campus is beautiful, clean, and smoke free (yay). i love it. however, i can't deny that there is a lot of truth to the talk about the pressure to date and marry, and i can't deny that occasionally i get caught up in it all.. for example (do not think less of me when i disclose this), next friday i will be attending a school hosted speed dating event. mostly because i have nothing else to do, but i have to admit i'm curious. what kind of people are drawn out of the wood work to actually go to those things here? i can only imagine. maybe i'll have a follow up post next week.

i'm going to be 21 next month. in this culture, i'm an OLD MAID. i know it's a bit ridiculous, but it's funny and i'm not really concerned. there is so much going on that i'd hate to miss. for example, my photog business! i love what i'm doing, i LOVE it! also, i'm thinking of serving a mission for my church in the next couple of years. a study abroad is also an option, maybe going to the jerusalem center next fall or winter. how COOL would that be?!?!?! plus i work with so many couples, it's satisfying to live my love life vicariously through them ("them" is all you happy people reading this). :D

life here is so interesting.

boo, i have a cold.
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Amy Coons said...

How can I not comment on this??? Heeheehee. I LOVE BYU!!! First, the ward directory "menu" is downright hilarious. Sad comparison, but really funny, truly.

Believe it or not though, the whole marrying culture has actually changed a little (what? seriously?) since I've been aware of it. The time that you were born at BYU, there were more married students and students with kids than 10 years later when I was there. I remember being a little baffled as a freshman when I heard about the waiting lists to get into married student housing. By the time I left, Wyview had been built and there wasn't a waiting list anymore. I also don't remember having many students in my classes my senior year that were married either and none had kids. There were 7 in my close girlfriend posse at BYU and only 2 got married before their graduations (granted I got married 5 days after I graduated and several others were within months of it too.) So now fast forward 10 years to you. I believe that Wyview is single student housing now? I'd be SO curious to see the actual stats of marriage and kids over the last 20 years. BUT, NO MATTER, the dating truths you talks about are just plain the SAME!!! Heeheehee! Honestly, thanks for bringing back some fun memories (I think they were fun at the time too...I think...;)

And colds stink. I have one too.

Pamplemousse said...

Oh man Heather! This is the best thing I've heard all day! I love it!

Ashlee said...

I love love LOVE you Heather, and I LOVE this:) It's hilarious and so true:)

Whitney Haslem said...

oh, my goodness... WHERE TO BEGIN!!!!!!!! First of all, I have to say, THE hottest commodity in your ward is the person who put that together! Find and date THEM! They obviously have a great sense of humor. lol This made my day for sure. I always hated those ward directories. Is it mandated by BYU that pictures and information besides a phone number be included in the ward directory??? It's just so ridiculous. But you're very right. Where else would you want to be; where else would you rather go to college? (I've heard BYUI is worse about this sort of thing lol) Anyway, I have to admit that I REALLY fall into this stereotype... 2 of 3 crimes you mentioned, I've committed. 1- marrying young and 2- getting engaged very quickly. However, I did not meet my husband at BYU or even Utah for that matter. Thank you Heather for posting this. It was so so so so funny!