Pt 31-C: My Mama Esther LeBaron Spencer, the Mexico-LeBarons, and Mental Illness
“He did the wrong thing for the right reason.”
Repeating what was said in previous blogs, both my mother and Grandmother Maud LeBaron believed the cause of mental illness in their immediate family was mainly due to the townspeople who ostracized and persecuted them incessantly.
But people need to take a good look at what part they, themselves, play in what happens to them and the lives of their children. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Let’s continue where we left off in blog “Pt 31-B.”
M- All the previous situations discussed in blogs “Pt 31-A & B,” and more, contributed to mental illness in the Mexico-LeBaron family—especially given that there was a history of mental illness in both my grandmother and grandfather LeBaron’s family lines.
N- Let’s not leave out that Grandpa Dayer LeBaron, himself, was not well-balanced mentally. Besides being guided by dreams, voices he heard in his head, and other such, he had personality disorders. On top of that, he, himself, was born and raised in a Mormon polygamous pioneer family—So no doubt he suffered and experienced many of the same things his own children later endured.
What’s more, despite how handsome he was, Grandpa Dayer was already an outcast when Grandma Maud married him. But she, too, had a few personality disorders, albeit to a lesser degree. And HER own father became mentally deranged in her later years. More on this in future blogs.
O- Now let us factor in the Mexico-LeBarons’ many fanatical and shaming fundamentalist Mormon/Fundy beliefs. And the ignorance we all share as human beings. ALL of this and more colluded, collided, andescalated to incubate the insanity and other personality disorders running in the Mexico-LeBarons’ genes—a collusion that eventually kicked in big-time with especially my grandparents’ sensitive and highly-gifted Ben, Wesley, Lucinda, and Ervil.
P- We’ve gotten this far and haven’t mentioned they didn’t believe in Psychology nor Psychological Counseling. And there was no Dr. Phil anywhere to be seen!
Q- What’s worse, besides being laws unto themselves, and largely ostracized by others, this beautiful, bright, talented family was nonetheless not well-educated nor well read—though they thought they were.
R- And, on top of all else, they were pretty much isolated. They lived far away from family and relatives and without many friends. Plus, they lived during the Great Depression, in a foreign, strange land, in a small-town—a Mexican-Mormon colony that faught tooth-and-toenail these gorgeous, highly gifted, Mexico-LeBaron renegades and creatives living on the fringe of society and reality.
S- The Maud and Dayer LeBaron family simply had almost nowhere to turn for help in the face of all their extenuating problems and situations! And to exacerbate everything else, Grandpa Dayer lacked tact. The last thing he would do was compromise ANY of his values in order to come to an agreement so as to get along with others who differed with him. He didn’t believe in compromising when it came to telling the truth and doing what was right. It was not beneath him to tell people they were stupid and going to hell if they didn’t agree with him and follow his beliefs.
T- I almost left out a crucial factor: Not only were the Mexico-LeBarons ostracized by most of their own town’s people, AND the mainstream Mormon church, but by all the Mormon fundamentalist groups too—the “Fundies”!
U- Now add to this that in the time the Mexico-LeBarons lived—the olden days—Mental Illness carried terrible stigmas! People held extreme and fearfulbeliefs such as “The devil or evil spirits are in the mentally ill person!” Many believed Satan resided in the insane so avoided the family.
A person could be ostracized from the community because he or she was mentally deranged. Often the mentally challenged person’s whole family would be ostracized right along with the crazy member. They would be jeered at, sticks and stones thrown to break their bones—the list goes on. Sadly, the Mexico-LeBarons endured all this and more.
V- When you consider the many things my overly-challenged Mexico-LeBaron family had to bear up under, it’s a wonder they survived at all and remained strong and determined in so many ways. (Nietzsche said: “Whatever doesn’t kill you will make you stronger” Really?!)
One way they survived was to try to prove themselves by out-doing others whenever they were able to. (Often that was not such a challenge for the Mexico-LeBarons!) Another tactic they employed was to try to rise above the gossip and persecution. Still another was to escape into a dreamworld. Mother said she purposely created stories in her mind about the way she wanted her life to be because this helped her survive the terrible ostracism and shame brought upon her and her family.
W- I’m not saying the Mexico-LeBarons didn’t have their faults and foibles that caused them to be cast out by most people. I’m saying this was a most unusual and strong family, considering all they endured and survived. And, despite everything, they were leaders, no less: They acquired followers and they lead them—by hook or crook!
(Continued January 28, 2019 in “Pt 31-D: My Mama Esther LeBaron Spencer, the Mexico-LeBarons, and Mental Illness)
Pt 31-B: My Mama Esther LeBaron Spencer, The Mexico LeBarons, and Mental Illness
“As you work on your memoir, write with fidelity to your own experience while knowing that memory is fallible. Write with respect for your subjects, even if they come across as louts. And tell your story true, artfully, and with courage.” Tracy seeley My Ruby Slippers
(We left off on letter “E” in blog “Pt 31-A”)
Repeating what was said in blog Pt 31-A, both my mother Esther LeBaron Spencer and maternal grandmother Maud McDonald LeBaron believed the cause of mental illness in their immediate family was mainly due to the Mexican-Mormon townspeople of Colonia Juarez who severely ostracized and persecuted them during the twenty years they lived there.
But I believe people must look at what part they, themselves, played/ play in what happens to them and their offspring. Many things went into the Mexico-LeBaron mental-illness factor.
Let’s continue where we left off with what I believe caused the mental illness in my dear Mexico-LeBaron family:
F- Mormon fundamentalists/Fundies believed in beating the devil out of their children—as in Spare the rod, spoil the child. Force, physical and emotional abuse, brutality — these were only some of the control tactics my well-meaning, old-country, perfectionistic grandparents employed to keep their children in line in an effort to make SURE they were perfect little Saints bound for the the highest degree of glory in the hereafter-—as if one can force somebody back to heaven! (Wasn’t that Satan’s plan, according to Mormon doctrine? Jesus wanted to let us all choose for ourselves what we wanted to do.)
G- They stuck to many strict, stoic, fallacious beliefs—backward values and fears they lived by, taught, and ingrained in their children. These shaming, guilt-provoking, fanatic religious strictures were, alone, enough to cause mental illness—especially in highly sensitive kids.
H– Add to that the unstable life of moving back and forth from one homestead, town, and country to another during especially the older Mexico-LeBaron childrens’ lives.
I- Then, take into account that not only was their mother Maud absent much of the time teaching piano lessons to help support the huge family, but their father was also often gone months at a time. The oldest children, who lacked parenting themselves, were, nonetheless, left to raise the younger ones—if any of them got raised at all!
J- On top of this, I am told in the latter years of my grandparents’ marriage my grandmother Maud separated from Grandfather Dayer and went to live in the United States for a number of years. Not sure if she took her youngest children (who were teenagers by then) with her. But the separating of one’s parents is, in and of itself, a great emotional stress on the children.
K- Now, add to this whole scenario the problems involved in dealing with polygamy, including two plural wives and all their kids living in the same house for seven years — and Maud being many years older than Onie.
L- And remember: These were the olden days. Hindsight is always the best sight. We have come a long way in understanding and knowledge since my grandparents’ day. Child-protective laws and much more have changed since then. At least we hope so.
I only know my grandparents had their sight set on heaven and the hereafter so were definitely trying to do what they believed was right. They thought if they did what God commanded them to do, He would take care of the rest!
Pt 31-A: My Mama Esther LeBaron Spencer, the Mexico LeBarons, and Mental Illness
“No influence is so powerful as that of the mother.” Sarah Josepha Hale
As I said in the previous blog, both my mother and maternal grandmother Maud LeBaron believed the cause of mental illness in their immediate family was mainly due to the townspeople who ostracized and persecuted them incessantly.
But I believe people need to take a good look at what part they, themselves, played/ play in what happens to them and the lives of their children. My opinion as to what caused the mental illnesses includes the following list:
But I believe people need to take a good look at what part they, themselves, played/ play in what happens to them and the lives of their children. My opinion as to what caused the mental illnesses includes the following list:
1- The genes for susceptibility to a number of mental illnesses runs in both of my maternal grandparents’ family lines! That’s a biggie!
2- There were some huge problems in my grandparents’ household and in the upbringing of their children — problems that affected their mental well-being from the womb to the tomb.
3- Enduring their whole life the small-town Mormon venom, denigration, and ostracism definitely played a large part in my grandparents’ children’s succumbing to multiple mental and emotional illnesses. Especially damaging to the LeBaron children was being shunned by the most influential people of their own religion and community.
4- In hindsight, and judging by my own personal sight, my grandparents’ choices greatly affected their children. I’ve listed some of those choices here:
A- Staying in the Mormon colonies to raise their children, despite the devastating effects ostracization and persecution have on especially sensitive children .
B- Taking a plural wife, thereby ignoring their church’s Manifesto of 1890 that outlawed polygamy. This not only compounded the familial problems that already existed, but forced my grandparents to move to Old Mexico to raise their family — a place where Grandfather Dayer was not allowed to earn a living. So he had to leave his family for months at a time to work in the United States.
C- Living polygamy multiplied the poverty, stress, deprivation, and emotional upheaval, not to mention that it brought on ostracism and persecution BIG-time. All these things lead to stress—and stress helps lead to mental illness, especially when it already exists in the genes.
D- Sticking to Mormon fundamentalist beliefs and values, come hell or high water, meant having all the children they could possibly have — whether it was healthy or not — which also meant much greater poverty and far less time, money, attention, food, and love for each child.
E- Having lots of kids meant the older children, especially, had to work far too hard to help raise all those babies. Since the oldest child born to my grandparents was a girl (Irene), she suffered the biggest brunt of having to play mommy to the huge family born to Grandpa Dayer and Grandma Maud. (Orthodox Mormon beliefs put quantity ahead of quality … and their beliefs ahead of common sense and the needs of their babies, children, and themselves.)
(Continued January 7, 2019, in Pt 31-B: My Mama Esther LeBaron Spencer, the Mexico LeBarons, and Mental Illness)
*NOTE: I’ve edited and rewritten parts of the 26-blog“Part 19” series. I have presently broken this rewritten and reposted series into two different parts consisting of 13 blogs each. (“Part 19: A–M” was recently posted.)
This blog, “Part 19: N–Z,” is the second half of the 26-blog series “Part 19: A–Z.” (Also, I’ve individually posted each blog in this grouped series of 26 blogs.) As always, looking forward to your feedback. ~ Stephany
My Memoir, Part 19-N: Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer —
And More Perils of Polygamy
From left to right: My Uncle Ervil Morrell LeBaron, My father Floyd Otto Spencer, My mother Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer, and my husband William Preston Tucker/ AKA: Bill
Try as he will, no man breaks wholly loose From his first love, no matter who she be. Oh, was there ever sailor free to choose, That didn’t settle somewhere near the sea?
Myself, it don’t excite me nor amuse To watch a pack o’ shipping on the sea; But I can understand my neighbour‘s views From certain things which have occurred to me.
Men must keep touch with things they used to use To earn their living, even when they are free; And so come back upon the least excuse — Same as the sailor settled near the sea.
He knows he’s never going on no cruise — He knows he’s done and finished with the sea; And yet he likes to feel she’s there to use — If he should ask her — as she used to be.
Even though she cost him all he had to lose, Even though she made him sick to hear or see, Still, what she left of him will mostly choose Her skirts to sit by. How comes such to be?
Parsons in pulpits, tax-payers in pews, Kings on your thrones, you know as well as me, We’ve only one virginity to lose, And where we lost it there our hearts will be!
I left off saying in “My Memoir: Part 19-M — Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And More Perils of Polygamy” that once I was married off as an adolescent into Bill’s polygamous household, I desperately needed my parent’s love, advice, and support. Was so lonely for my family. But I was not allowed to visit them.
This tripled the loneliness I felt as a 16-year-old newlywed married to a man ten years my senior with whom I was so in love but who was usually vacant in my life and even less often in my bed. When Bill wasn’t with his other two wives or someone else, he was with my Uncle Ervil … or some other man?
Having more than one wife and more than one household assures a polygamist his wives can’t usually keep tabs on whom he is with or where he is when he’s not with them — just one advantage to polygamy — especially if the husband is a rover living a double life — like Bill.
To make matters worse, it was as though Bill and Ervil were joined at the hip. If they weren’t together writing religious pamphlets, or on a “missionary trip,” or visiting, preaching to cult members and investigators, they found other “urgent” reasons to “get out of Dodge,” dodge the bullets and be together — all in the name of “doing church business” and “building up the kingdom of God.”
Ervil was like one of Bill’s wives.* As I said, the two were attached at the hips “doing missionary work”* — sharing the same bed when out of town. And remember, these two polygamists were used to having sex at least once every night and possibly during the morning or daytime too, given their many wives (and boyfriends?). So I can only wonder what went on “undercover” when they were suddenly without their habitual sexual partners.
Given the above circumstances, and their belief that masturbation was a mortal sin, imagine how “hard UP” (pun intended) these Mormon fundamentalist “Saints” were for sex during their days and sometimes weeks of being away from home “Doing the Lord’s work” to convert new recruits so as to bring more tithing money into the church coffers — money that mostly ended up in Ervil’s and Bill’s back pockets to support themselves and their humongous families.
After Bill left Joel and Ervil’s “Church,” Ervil took Dan Jordan “on” as his right-hand man. My Aunt Delfina, Ervil’s first wife, said Dan was Ervil’s “wife” because he spent more time with Dan than with his wives!
*”Doing missionary work” was the common catchphrase and smokescreen that covered up and justified everything in the cult. It made sinners look like saints in the eyes of the “true believers.” (But I know now not to believe everything I see or am told!)
Excellent expose by renowned speaker and Author of “Combatting Cult Mind Control,” and leader in recognizing brainwashing tactics — and much more!
My Memoir, Part 19-O: Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And More Perils of Polygamy
“Leaders who win the respect of others are the ones who deliver more than they promise, not the ones who promise more than they can deliver.” Mark A. Clement
Taking up where I left off in my blog “My Memoir: Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And More Perils of Polygamy — Part 19-N”:
It seems I got off onto a little bunny trail a few blogs back. It’s high time we backtrack — get back to where Uncle Ervil and my parents were manipulating my love life in the name of polygamy to get me married off to “Billy” — back to where, in July of 1963, my sixteen-year-old-self was in the process of being pawned off in a prearranged marriage to ten-years-my-senior William Preston Tucker (leader of the infamous French missionaries excommunicated from the LDS/ Mormon church around 1958).
Since Uncle Ervil wasn’t able to do anything about his sister/my mom throwing a jackhammer into his plans to trade me to Homer Babbitt for land, Ervil manipulated another of his nieces into marrying Babbitt in my place.
Yes, smooth-talking, scrupleless Uncle Ervil soon had one of his brother Wesley’s daughters, my red-haired sixteen-year-old cousin Jenny Lou LeBaron married to Homer. Poor Jenny! At the time, she was only visiting the LeBaron colony. But visiting the LeBaron colony was dangerous. She ended up homesteading as forty-three-year-old Babbitt’s polygamous bride. Her parents weren’t by her side to protect her from her uncle Ervil’s revelations and manipulations!
My parents “protected” me by betraying me! They had raised me to believe I could trust them impeccably because they were Saints. No, they were frauds. For years, they regularly snuck into and read my private diaries unbeknownst to me. Then discussed among themselves my thoughts and business meant for my eyes only. (I found this out many years after-the-fact.)
So they not only knew every personal thought that went on in my adolescent brain (No wonder they had become so down on me!), but also, inadvertently, during their daily entertainment, learned of Ervil’s devious plans to marry me to Homer Babbitt behind their backs!
That’s how my parents got the bright/”bride” idea to turn around, themselves, and manipulate my love-life and who I was to marry! They boggled Ervil’s plans to barter me to Babbit by replacing them with their own plans to barter me to Bill.
After all, I had written in my journal, “Bill Tucker is the man I’m in love with, not Homer!” There was a selfish method to my parents’ madness: It brought far more prestige to them to have me married to Bill rather than to Babbit. I don’t know which was worse for me in the end! (I was so in love with Bill but he shattered ‘n’ battered me. Kind Babbit would’ve built me up, appreciated, and loved me.)
Since Jenny’s parents weren’t around to snoop into her diaries, Ervil won the second time around. He got Jenny married to Homer in a heartbeat. Then set to work to convince his bosom-buddy Billy to comply with my parents’ wishes that he marry me.
(Ervil had quickly seen how Bill’s marrying me would work for him. For one thing, Homer wouldn’t wonder why I hadn’t ended up marrying him after all Ervil’s wheelings and dealings to have him marry me!)
My Memoir: Part 19-P — Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — More Perils of Polygamy
“As I sifted through my memories,
my life came to me in bits and pieces,
often disconnected, just like my dreams. Even normal memory has gaps,
but traumatic memory is even more discontinuous.
This is my story, which put me back together.” Lost Boy Brent W. Jeffs
Continuing where I left off in “My Memoir: Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer– And More Perils of Polygamy — Part 19-O”:
As I said previously, my sixteen-year-old first cousin Jenny Lou LeBaron’s parents weren’t around to snoop into her private diaries. So my uncle Ervil LeBaron won the second time around in his efforts to get Homer Babbitt a child bride in exchange for a parcel of his land.
After getting Jenny married to Homer, he set to work to convince his bosom-buddy Billy Tucker to follow through with marrying me — the way my parents wanted him to.
Let’s back up a bit. At first, Ervil (one of Mother’s younger brothers) didn’t know what hit when he found I was suddenly being given away to Billy! Like how was he, Ervil, going to explain to Homer that, despite the revelations he got that I was supposed to marry him, Homer, his sister Esther (my mother) had her own “revelation” I was supposed to marry Billy/William Preston Tucker?
But, Ervil, as usual, wormed out of his having promised me to Homer by coming up with a new revelation for Homer as to whom he was to marry when the first “revelation” fell through.
Nonetheless, “Evil ErVIL” was blindsided in his own shenanigans and misuse of power because he had no idea my parents knew about his secret attempt to marry me off to Homer Babbitt behind their back! I had no idea my parents knew about it either. I found that out far down the line — after I was already Bill’s concubine.
So, despite Ervil’s efforts to keep “the adversary” (the devil) from finding out about his plans, lo and behold, “the adversary” — in the name of my parents — did find out about the self-proclaimed-profit Ervil’s latest priestcraft — in a most unexpected way. But Mother, with Daddy’s help, had me convinced it was “through a dream — a revelation” she “came to know” I was supposed to marry Bill Tucker!
As I mentioned in a previous blog, I had not told my parents what Uncle Ervil LeBaron (The Second Grand Head in the Priesthood of the LeBaron cult) was directing me to do, because Uncle Ervil, who practically stood as God to the people, had told me, “God doesn’t want your parents to know till you’re ALREADY married to Homer.”
“Let’s keep this a secret between me, you, and Homer,” Uncle Ervil had adamantly whispered to me. “We don’t want “the adversary” to get wind of what’s going on here and try to stop God’s work — God’s desire you marry Homer to help build up His kingdom on earth.” (Replace “God” with “Ervil.”)
Part 19-Q — Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And More Perils of Polygamy
Could This be Bill with his first two wives,
“horny toads” in a menage a trois? Sex, drugs, ‘n’ “rock ‘n’ roll“… Rock on!
“The truth told with love and consideration is the key. An honest account of what you experienced is what memoir is all about.”
Rita Keeley Brown
Continued from: “My Memoir: Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And More Perils of Polygamy — Part 19-P”
Getting back to my being in the throes of “The First Grand Head” of the cult, my uncle Ervil LeBaron and his having a jackhammer thrown into his “perfect“ plans to marry me off to his pal, Homer (behind my parents’ back) let me give you a little pertinent backstory:
Mother and her siblings, including Ervil, had grown up with Homer Babbitt in the Mormon colonies in Colonia Juarez, Mexico. Timid blond-haired, blue-eyed Homer was around Momma’s age; that is, 26 years older than I. Extremely shy, unassuming, and quiet, he blushed often, highlighting his already red pockmarked face and neckdeeply scarred from acne and boils. Sadly, the name “Homer” (Homely) fit him.
But he was a sweet, sensitive, kind, conscientious, considerate gentleman — with money. Quite rare in my neck of the woods. Barely converted from the LDS church to the LeBaron cult and polygamy, Homer was, in marrying me as his plural wife, trying to please both God and his childhood Mormon pal Ervil.
Even so, as I partly related earlier, my parents got busy post haste to covertly thwart Ervil’s plans to barter me off to Babbitt, by going to Bill, behind my back, and exclaiming, “If you want to marry Beulah, right now is your chance. Tomorrow will be too late!”
But Bill, always the diplomat, countered with, “Beulah is too young. I need to wait a couple more years. I don’t have money to support another wife right now. Can’t even afford to take her on a honeymoon.”
He was REALLY hedging! Mormon fundamentalist Men usually did not take their plural wives on a honeymoon! There was enough trouble in Bedlam (Plyg Town) without them honeymooning each new plural wife. Furthermore, most polygamists couldn’t afford their first wife and her herd of up to possibly twenty-six kids, let alone a honeymoon for each new wife added to the harem.
And new wives meant ultimately even more kids–more expense and time: Each new wife stretched further and further the husband and father from his time and money. In the end, it was mostly the wives and children left to bear the brunt of this hapless, mindless lifestyle.
But true-believing, brainwashed Daddy nevertheless bribed Bill: “How’s about I help you out? I’ll give you some money … more than enough to take my favorite daughter on a honeymoon for a week. How’d that be?“
That money sounded good to penniless-pauper Bill. He had to rely too much on the purse strings of his first wife Marilyn (Her parents sent her money regularly from “The States”) in order to keep his family afloat in the LeBaron colony while he worked to get his chicken business off the ground, including a chicken packing plant for “pollos”/friers.
But wouldn’t you know, it was Ervil finding out about my parents trying to arrange my marriage to Bill that cemented the deal. More on “the deal” in the next blog.
My Memoirs: Part 19-R, Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And More Perils of Polygamy: My Honeymoon
“We all come from the past, and children ought to know what it was
that went into their making.” Russell Baker
I had never traveled much past my own backyard, especially once we moved, when I was fourteen, to Chihuahua, Mexico to join the secluded wilderness LeBaron cult — “Zion.”
But when I was married off to twenty-six-year-old Bill Tucker in an arranged marriage (as I said in the last blog) Daddy gave Bill money to take me to Chihuahua City for a week’s Honeymoon.
I’m so touched Daddy did that because he was not well to do and was often mean to me, besides. But it seems he cared enough to twist Bill’s arm to take me on a Honeymoon — or desperately wanted to get me off his hands! It is more likely Daddy gave him the money in an effort to set up a little better deal for Bill at the start of our marriage because he felt guilty about having pawned me off onto Bill and his harem when Daddy knew Bill was out of work and couldn’t afford to support the two wives and five children he already had!!
Needless to say, Bill felt obligated to take me on a honeymoon. But he didn’t feel obligated to spend any of the money on me. And he didn’t! While in Chihuahua City, on our honeymoon, he took ME shopping to spend $ on his first wife Marilyn — money Daddy meant to be spent to help me get started in my new home because Bill said he couldn’t afford me!
Though, as a newlywedded teenager, I needed so many things to set up my new household, my new husband spent not a penny on me —other than for cheap lodgings for the both of us, restaurant meals he gobbled down, and gas for our automobile trip — a trip that (I realized years later), was mainly a business and pleasure trip for him: He met with boyfriends and with companies he was dealing with to get them to buy his fryers/pollos when they were ready to be beheaded, defeathered, and marketed.
When I married Bill, he and his two wives were in the process of starting a chicken business that would include a chicken-packing plant. Money to get the family business going would be mostly supplied by his first wife Marilyn’s dowery.
I realize now, Bill, having so recently come upon a little money of his own by way of my father, wanted to ingratiate himself with his jealous 31-year-old Marilyn (She was about five years older than he, 15 years older than I) for having taken me on as a third wife against her will — though she was largely financing his family and their upstart chicken business!!
Can you imagine how it hurt 16-year-old-child-bride me (who knew nothing about his family) to be left alone for an hour standing on the sidelines of my own Honeymoon watching the man I loved lovingly look for and pick out a costly gift for his first wife’s upcoming thirty-second birthday — while totally ignoring me?
It wasn’t fun!
Welcome to Polygamy 101, And the “Big Love” idea: “Love-times-three.” He bought “nada”
For new-homemaker-me. Take a hint: Polygamy
Is a big bunch of bull-pucky!
Don’t believe me? Try it and see.
Part 19-S, Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And More Perils of Polygamy: My Honeymoon
“And we are put on this earth a little space that we might learn to bear the beams of love” ― William Blake
I left off in “My Memoir: Part 19-R, Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And More Perils of Polygamy: My Honeymoon,” saying:
It hurt SO to be left out in the cold on my own honeymoon as I stood in the background watching the foreground where the man I just married neglected me to lovingly look for and pick out an extravagant gift for his “old” wife Marilyn’s upcoming 32nd birthday. He not only ignored me. He bought me “nada.” No fun! Welcome to Polygamy 101.
I learned later that jealous Marilyn, about fifteen years my senior, was exceedingly upset Bill married me despite her ardent protests! Then he added kerosene to the coals: He took me (once again despite her’s and the SECOND wife’s avid protests) on a Honeymoon to Chihuahua City, a-few-hours drive away.
Taking me on a honeymoon for a week must’ve left narcissistic Billy feeling at least a little queasy: His first wife Marilyn and his favorite wife Lolita were home alone and horny, grieving his honeymooning and spooning child-bride me.
Was he showing them they were not enough? Or that I was too good a package to pass up? Bill could always pass his actions off onto: “Polygamy –“The Law of Plural Marriage” –comes first and foremost … above all else!”
Mormon fundamentalists believe building up the kingdom of God is all that matters. More wives means bringing more little spirits into good Mormon fundamentalist homes to build God’s work and combat Satan’s efforts to overcome Him.
Because Marilyn held and CONTROLLED the family purse strings, Bill wanted to make strides with her. So, though it was my honeymoon, he bought her an extravagant present on my time that actually came from his own money — the money Daddy gave him for me!
I was rudely learning that all this was par for the course in polygamous marriages. I wasn’t his only love and consideration nor concern. I had to share him — even on my honeymoon.
To top it off, the second day there, without warning, Bill heartlessly left me alone out in the car on the street for five hours with nothing to do!! Not even a radio to listen to — sans warning that he would be gone anywhere nearly so long — while he “did business and missionary work” (in the missionary position?) with a buddy or two:
“I can’t have you at the meeting. These men have met Marilyn. Can’t let them know I have more than one wife,” was his easy way out.
Next: Despite his promised seven-day Honeymoon, about five days in, he suddenly told me, again without my having any say in it: “We’re going home now. Need to cut our Honeymoon short. Must get back home to take care of business.” I think he mostly missed and was worried about his other two wives, was bored with me, wasn’t in love with me, and didn’t value freebie-me much … let alone care how I felt. What do you think?
We returned home within five days of what turned out to be, all-in-all, a stressful, rather uneventful honeymoon — except (brace yourself) lying in the lap of my sexy husband as he steered the vehicle toward home, I had my way with him. We are lucky Bill didn’t lose his way at the wheel as he came — and I lived to tell the story!
NOTE: If you wonder what Mormon fundamentalist cults believe, how they are brainwashed, and why members don’t often leave — aren’t able to escape these clans — listen to the following YouTube interviews:
Part 19-T, Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And More Perils of Polygamy: My Honeymoon
“The sharing of stories broadens our outlook on life. People identify with and draw strength from reading about the struggles of others. Readers can ‘try on’ the life of the character/s in the story and see how they would have felt and reacted without having to suffer through the experience themselves.
They ‘become’ that protagonist, that main character, as they step into his shoes and walk through the difficulties he faces.” Rita Keeley Brown
Continued from: “My Memoir: Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — and More Perils of Polygamy: My Honeymoon — Part 19-S”)
I left off in the last blog saying that Bill promised me a seven-day Honeymoon; however, 4 1/2 days in he informed me: “We’re going home now. Need to cut this Honeymoon short … get back to take care of business.“
Apparently, having taken care of “business” with his boyfriends in Chihuahua City, there was little enticement to remain away from his two grieving, furious, jealous wives conniving at home as to how best to work in cahoots so as to deal with Bill and me. (Deal they did!)
While Bill’s old black Cadillac rocked, rattled, ‘n’ rolled as it sped toward our homestead Colonia LeBaron, I lay in my lover’s lap and “had my way with him” — ever so lucky my husband didn’t lose control of the wheel as he came. Adolescent me who didn’t drive didn’t see how close we “came” to diving over the cliff to Dover-heaven in sexual oblivion!
The car swerved back-and-forth, skidding dangerously a few times. But determined Billy managed to muster all he had to keep his Cad on the road while he exploded in ecstasy! My, what a man — what I cad! The Angels must’ve been watching over us (How embarrassing!) where angels fear to tread. Thereafter, tread marks left on the highway were all that remained to tell the tale of our ecstatic but erratic, “wreckless” ride.
Other than that, it was, for me, a pretty blissful but stressful and uneventful five-day honeymoon with hubby — except for some luscious restaurant meals, visiting Chihuahua City’s Museum of Art and other such — including Mexico’s Robin Hood and Mexican-war-hero Pancho Villa’s museum home. His elderly wife still lived there and lead us on the tour.
We then saw the hit movie, “El Sid.” I had seen so few movies in my life (maybe two or three?) I had to keep asking Bill what was said and what was going on. And, did I mention the mosquitoes buzzing in, out, and all about as we slept, biting me on both eyelids just in time for our Honeymoon photos?
You shall hear, I fear, in my upcoming book, more about Bill’s and my Honeymoon — my initiation “into” Bill’s harem — and he into me. I promise! Can hardly wait to tell you this “herstory-history.”
Part 19-U — Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And Polygamy On-The-Down-Low
“A memoir is your perception of your experience of
your involvement in a particular situation in your life.
It is not your sister’s, it is not your father’s, or anyone else’s.
There will always be someone who will say,
‘That’s not how I remember it.’ ”
Rita Keeley Brown
Taking up where we left off in“My Memoir: Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And Polygamy On-The-Down-Low, Part 19-T”:
My third trip in the five-and-a-half years since my family moved to Colonia LeBaron, Chihuahua, Mexico in 1960–including my honeymoon–was once again back to Chihuahua City, Mexico when I was nineteen. It happened only because I approached Bill pleading:
“Please! Since Daddy just died and I’m grieving, shouldn’t I be the one to go on this trip with you? You’ve taken the other two wives on lots of trips; yet, have never taken me anywhere except to Chihuahua on our honeymoon.”
Bill relented. But it was only a one-day-one-night business trip with him and one of his buddies, Bruce Wakeham, who drove us there and back in the cab of his bouncing gray pickup truck — the three of us crammed together like sardines, Bill between Bruce and me.
Just because Bill took me on what I thought would be a romantic trip where we might finally do some special bonding, it didn’t mean he had to make love to me that night or even talk to me … or anything else. And he didn’t! He barely tolerated me. Once at the Wakeham’s home, he ignored me altogether and, without a kiss or a goodbye, took off with Bruce, leaving me behind with Bruce’s first wife Juna. Tears!!
That night, when we went to bed, more tears and disappointment: Bill rolled over and turned his back on me, refusing my attempts to make love. Knowing what I know now about Bill and his buddies, I suspect Bill didn’t do his usual three-minute screw then fall asleep on me, when it was my night to be with him–though he loved how well he fit in me–because he was afraid Bruce would know … even though we were in bed undercover in the dead of night.
Was he afraid Bruce would be jealous? There were no curtains on the bedroom windows if you can believe it! But either way you “peek” at it, I was screwed — screwed over big-time by two-timing big-Plyg Billy! You’ll see more of what I mean in my next blog.
Part 19-V, Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And Polygamy On-The-Down-Low
“You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories.
If people wanted you to write warmly about them,
they should’ve behaved better.” Anne Lamott,
“Bird by Bird”
I left off in “My Memoir: Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And Polygamy On-The-Down-Low, Part 19-U” remarking that when my husband Bill Tucker and I went to bed, our one night we spent in Chihuahua City, I suffered the usual tears and disappointments of my concubinage with this man I’d experienced since the day I married him at age sixteen — two-and-a-half years earlier.
This time the suffering was because I expected a loving, supportive, special trip, and to be all alone without the other two wives around so that finally Bill might bestow on me some special warmth.
But even when I was alone in bed with him, he didn’t show any love toward me, let alone some sympathy for my father having just died! Instead, he hadn’t given me any attention during the whole twenty-four-hour trip; now he simply rolled over, turned his back on me, and refused my attempts to make love.
Was this hot-blooded sex-fiend punishing me for asking to go on a trip with him, though this night would have been another wife’s turn– and his taking me on this trip was causing his other two wives further grief and jealousy…which meant more trouble for him when he got home? That never mattered when he took his other two wives on trips when it was my turn to spend the night with him!
Knowing what I know now about Bill and his buddies, I suspect Bill — though he loved how well he fit in me — didn’t do his usual three-minute screw, like he always did when it was my night to be with him (which was every third night, if he was in town) then fall asleep on top of me– his stocky, overweight body crushing my petite frame–because he was afraid Bruce would know — even though we were undercover in bed in the dead of night!
To repeat what I wrote in the previous blog, maybe Bill was afraid Bruce would be jealous: There were no curtains on the bedroom windows! Either way you “peek,” I was screwed — screwed over big-time by two-timing-gay-Plyg Billy!
Well, I’ll leave you in the dark no more: I believe this hot-blooded “Billy” had gone off and gotten it on with Brucey– maybe some other “Willy” too. So he’d created special bonding with Brucey, plus got his sexual juices expunged. Was also being careful not to cause jealousy in Bruce. This would ruin his and Bruce’s special just-built or just-renewed connection … if Brucey should come checking on Billy and catch his willy in me.
I say this based on a trip I managed to go on with Bill to Guadalajara, Mexico in 1964, about a year earlier. I was barely eighteen then. There I witnessed, in a roundabout way, Billy and his buddy Stephen do this very thing I described above. It took place at Mariachi Square, famous the world over among homosexuals–at least back then–as a gathering place.
Part 19-W, Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer —
And Polygamy On-The-Down-Low
William Preston Tucker and his buddy Stephen
People see what they want to see–
what they don’t want to see
till they want to see. Stephany Spencer
Taking up where we left off in, “My Memoir: Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And Polygamy On-The-Down-Low, Part 19-V”:
Being an adolescent eighteen year old, poorly educated, brainwashed, backward, duped, and dumb, I had no idea what the hell was going on when, while visiting Guadalajara, Mexico in 1964 with my twenty-eight-year-old handsome husband Billy Tucker, I unwittingly witnessed him and his horn-rimmed buddy Stephen Silver making “a connection” — a hit — at the Mariachi Square — famous the world over as a gathering place for homosexual men … I learned years later.
Back then I believed on-the-down-low Bill’s bull when he told me he and his pal Steve would be out late “doing missionary work.” (In the missionary position?)
Later that night, I didn’t see them in action. I heard them in action — After Bill had left me at Stephen Silver’s home with Stephen’s two wives (one of them my sister) so he could, as he told me, “go back and rescue Stephen from the hotbed of bad influences at Mariachi Square.“
That evening, long after retiring, I was awakened by weird midnight noises wafting up to my loft above from the living room below, fifty feet away … strange, odd animal expletives, guttural grunts, groans; sensuous heavy breathing. How heedless, how hedonistic of Bill and Steve to believe their women were fast asleep or wouldn’t hear. I could swear their “little head” was doing the thinking that night!!
At the time, I was “asleep…couldn’t hear” when it came to being in the dark about Bill’s double/down-low life. He knew he could count on that: Homosexuality was in my blind spot. I didn’t even know the word existed, let alone what it meant — let alone that my own “saintly” Mormon husband and his best “buddy” — his old French missionary pal — were “one” … frauds!
They had spent two years as missionary partners in the Mormon French mission field in the mid to late 1950s, when they were at their sexual prime — around nineteen to twenty-one years old — sharing the same bed or bunk! (Not sure which one was “on top.”)
Now wise, I realize those passionate sounds and other activities witnessed on that “trip” weren’t “doing missionary work:” Bill and Stephen brought home with them that night at least one of the gay guys they connected with at Guadalajara, Mexico’s Mariachi Square.
Part 19-X — Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And Polygamy On-The-Down-Low
Online Chat Notes Denote NPD: Narcissistic Personality Disorder Said one woman, “You know, it’s so funny:
I used to think my Ex was the most
kind, loving, good-hearted man I ever met.
I used to think he was such a treasure
and that I didn’t deserve him.
When I found out about narcissism, and started putting the pieces together, my brain did an about-face … I’m now in a better place, thank God!
Now I know that I’m dealing with an NPD …. So sad though … It makes me weep.
They are masters at trying to make you feel like crap.
However, I figured out how to checkmate these A-holes,
in the future, since I have a knack for
attracting such relationships.”
I left off in the last blog, “My Memoir: Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And Polygamy On-The-Down-Low, Part 19-W,” remarking:
Much older and wiser now, I realize the weird things I witnessed on that Guadalajara, Mexico “trip” weren’t doing missionary work: My twenty-eight-year-old Mormon fundamentalist husband William Preston Tucker and his best buddy/lover Stephen Silver had brought home with them at least one gay guy they connected with at Mariachi Square that night.
Believing my idol Bill was on a pedestal — a total Mormon saint– my eighteen-year-old innocent, trusting self figured the noises wafting up from down below were Bill and his buddy trying with all their might to “get it up” … I mean, to put across the Scriptures to someone they had met while at Mariachi Square doing missionary work.
I thought they were working so “HARD” to put across the gospel concepts of Mormon fundamentalism and my uncle Joel’s “Church” — the only true church on earth — that strained noises would somehow escape! BUT That’s exactly what Bill and Steve knew their naïve women would believe. Doing missionary work was ever the cover for everything undercover in the cult.
When Bill came to bed around 3 AM that night, I approached my “HARD”-working husband to make love only to find him oddly drenched with sweat… and exhausted! It seemed so strange but I figured it was due to his strenuous efforts to preach the gospel to the new contact. So I only admired my husband all the more for his hard work!
I didn’t question because I didn’t know enough to question. I was so sure Bill was the perfect emblem of virtuousness and virtuosity– That was the image he pretentiously portrayed. Bill was the LeBaron cult’s idol: He could do no wrong … so we thought… and so many of them still think to this day.
What amazes me now is, despite the intense sexual spree Bill had obviously just finished that left him drenched with perspiration, when I approached him to make love (it never entering my mind what he just finished doing), he was still able, though barely, to roll his wasted sopping self on top of me, get it up, penetrate, and go at it again … only to finish within fifteen seconds!
Then my stocky heavy hunk whom I had been waiting and longing for all evening, fell fast asleep on top of me without a word or a kiss, his dead weight crushing my petite five-foot-two frame! More cries, grunts, and groans — but this time they weren’t coming from badass Billy! I was crushed … in more ways than one.
Part 19-Y, Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer —
and Polygamy On The Down-Low
Is God then so ignorant of things,
so unacquainted with the human heart
that He has to find out about a man by testing him? Of course not. It is in order that a person
may find out about himself.
There are things in a person which are
hidden from the person in whom they are. And they won’t come out, or be opened up, or discovered,
except through tests and trials and temptations.
If God stops testing, it means the Master is stopping teaching … you do not know yourself unless you learn yourself through trial, temptation, and testing.
St. Augustine of Hippo (430 A.D.)
I left off in “My Memoir: Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And Polygamy On The Down-Low, Part 19-X” relating:
When my husband Bill came to bed around 3 AM, our first night in Guadalajara, Mexico, I approached him to make love, having no idea gay Billy and his beaus had barely finished a sexual rendezvous–NO idea such things existed. He liked to keep it that way.
I only knew I was crushed by his quick finish and even quicker falling asleep on top of me… crushed by the dead weight of his limp body I held in my arms as I struggled to breathe in between sobs while supporting his heavy muscular frame–about the only warmth I had felt from him the whole time there — or since I don’t know where. (So many times I would like to kill him now–were I not so civilized. Then I recall: He’s already dead.)
On my second day in Guadalajara with Bill, after touring some of its beautiful landmarks with Steve as our guide, Bill took me with them to eat at a swazzi French restaurant where apparently one of their handsome Mexican contacts worked as a Waiter.
Daring as ever, when this Waiter came to take our orders, Billy and Stephen spoke with him in French — using an odd pug-nosed accent! (They had learned fluent French in school and while on their Mormon French mission in the late 1950s.)
The heavy nasal twang amongst the three carried on into their Spanish conversation! I only knew a few words in Spanish. No French. But, as with other weird things I’d witnessed on this trip with these two Homo’s, I never quit wondering why they used that odd nasality. I’d never heard Bill nor Stephen speak like that before nor since…but I was never around them very much, either.
Eventually, my wondering about the strange things witnessed on this trip bore fruit. After I escaped the cult, became more educated and experienced, listened, watched, and read for answers–It helped that I had been around the block a few times too–I discovered, among other things, pug-nosed nasal speech was a secret code homosexuals used to connect.
The “connection” with the Waiter worked: That night, while climbing the loft to our bunk, Bill raised his voluminous voice and bellowed–so I would believe I was the guilty party (victimizing the victim):
“I”m not taking you anywhere else with me and Steve! I’m going to punish you for coming on this trip when I didn’t say you could! You just hopped a ride! So, for our next four nights here, you are to stay on your side of the bed. And DON’T touch me!”
Isn’t it odd: While hidden away in the big city where Billy was free to enjoy the homosexual spree, he didn’t want me … couldn’t USE me, is more like it. Narcissistic Billy’s punishing me was simply an excuse to save his sexual juices for the gay rendezvous!
But on the truck trip to and from Guadalajara, when there weren’t any gay guys but Steve to save his sex for, Bill had NO problem responding to my sexual advances — even though one of Stephen’s wives was also riding in the back of the truck with us — whichever one wasn’t sitting up front with Steve when Bill relinquished HIS envied spot to get some sleep so he could take the wheel next.
So, on our way back home to Colonia LeBaron, bisexual Bill’s punishment ended as quickly as it began! This sex addict was back to screwing my body then falling asleep on me immediately after his three-minute fuck wherein he took advantage of my nubile body and how well he fit … when he thought the other person in the back of the truck was asleep.
I was so in love with Bill and so bluffed by Bill and my Mormon fundamentalist indoctrination, I took whatever I could get whenever I could get it — which was never nearly enough nor ever often enough. All my baffled the mind knew for certain was marriage was not at all like I had been told it would be, let alone how I fantasized it would be since I was four years old.
My Memoir: Part 19-Z, Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer —
And Polygamy On The Down-Low
Women Beware: Philanderers are Opportunists … Big Pretenders. They will tell anybody anything they want to hear. How can you tell if they’re lying? Their lips are moving.
If a person will break a marriage contract, he or she will break any contract.
A conman gains a woman’s “con”fidence,
then conjures up dishonest and illegal methods to trick her. Womanizers are cons/sociopaths:
Like convicts, they have no respect for “The Rule of Law.”
Every lady’s man I’ve ever known
has turned out to be a con
and bisexual on the down-low. But it takes two to tango.
Men can’t do it without a predatorial, naïve,
or wanton woman’s help.
I left off in the last blog “My Memoir: Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer– And Polygamy On The Down-Low, Part 19-Y” stating:
On our way back home to Colonia LeBaron, bisexual Bill’s punishment ended! He returned to pretending he was my loving husband taking advantage of how well he fit … if the other person in the back of the truck was probably asleep.
But how is it I ended up on this trip Bill hadn’t “specifically” said I could go on? I complained to my older sister Doris, Stephen’s plural wife, saying: “Bill still has not given me a definite answer as to whether or not I can go on the trip with him. Each time I ask him, he simply responds, ‘You can PROBABLY go. I’ll see.’ And we’re supposed to leave tomorrow!”
She quipped, “Well, the way to handle that is to have your suitcase packed so you can grab it and hop in the back of the truck just as the engine starts up and they’re about to Roll. I’ll be in the back of the truck to help you. Bill will be up in the cab with Stephen so you’ll be well on your way to Guadalajara and my house before Bill knows you’ve made up his mind for him!
“I’ll let you know what time they plan to leave in the morning. We’ll sure teach Bill to give you a definite answer in the future so you’ll know whether or not to get a babysitter and be packed and ready to go!”
As it turned out, I had my suitcase packed and was at the truck when Bill came to get in. Being concerned about how he looked to others, Bill put out his hand and graciously helped me get on the truck –along with my luggage. So he inadvertently gave me permission to go. His saying he didn’t simply showed lack of integrity –as did his blaming me for his own doing’s.
Day after day, as the time for Bill’s trip to Guadalajara had approached, he had left me up in the air … dangling. Didn’t bother to let me off the hook. Kept pretending he was going to take me with him when he really had no intentions (I now realize) of being with anyone but Stephen and the Gay life in Guadalajara.
Stephen, who had been living and working there for a while, had so raved about life in that city. But he had me believing he was raving about beautiful Guadalajara and its cultural life. Apparently, he never let on to anyone but Bill it was the Gay life there he was raving about!
Oddly enough, Bill was not taking either of his other two wives on this five-day trip. And it was definitely my turn, long since, to go on a trip with him! But as usual, once on the trip, Bill made sure I wouldn’t much enjoy it and wouldn’t be able to develop any intimacy with him.
Now I realize whenever he did not take one of his wives on a trip he was going on, it was because he wanted to be with a boyfriend — or alone in the darkfucking “bushes” in the park.
He didn’t want to be with me, as young, beautiful, and sexy as others said I was — “A ten on the ‘Richter’ scale,” according to my Artist brother-in-law Sigfried Widmar. “Any man would be proud to walk with you on his arm,” he added. Almost every Plyg in town wanted to!
But Bill did not need nor love me. Unless he could use women to his advantage, they were not his preference, I realize now. He was a Big Pretender–a charmer, a womanizer who said one thing, did another — An Opportunist who would tell a person anything they wanted to hear — such as “I love you.” How could you tell if he was lying? His lips were moving.
But Bill was further put off by me because I didn’t “bite”– didn’t respond when his lesbian wives tried to bring me into “the family” –even at Bill’s behest. I was totally naïve and unaware of what the advances of his wives meant. Didn’t know lesbianism existed. Even had I known, I would’ve believed it was a terrible sin. So it was nothing I would ever want to be involved in– if ONLY because I was not sexually attracted to women.
The whole five years I was with Bill, I didn’t know such things as menages a trois existed — far less that some families in Mormon Fundamentalism participated in threesomes and group sex behind closed doors. I mean very closed. Because it was very against our religion!
Continued in My Memoir: “Pt 20-A: Ma, Pa, Me, and Polygamy On-the-Down-Low”
“The LeBaron Story” is truly a “Vanity Book” — not only because my uncle Verlan LeBaron paid a publishing company in 1981 (back when self-publishing was not the norm) to publish the book — but also because it’s a revisionistic, apologetic, and biased history of “the Mexico LeBarons;” i.e., my grandparents Maud and Dayer LeBaron and their offspring.
What’s more, though my Aunt Charlotte and Uncle Verlan finished and got the book published, they are largely NOT the main authors of it. Truth is, Uncle Verlan was FAR too busy to write a book — even if he knew how — too busy working, traveling around from country to country visiting his ten wives and fifty-plus kids — and running from his brother Ervil who was out to kill him! Aunt Charlotte was about that busy too!
Fact is, MY mother/Verlan’s older sister Esther LeBaron-McDonald de Spencer (who possessed a BA in Journalism) is the one who birthed and did the groundwork for what is now “The LeBaron Story.” She wrote a large part of this book, then turned her “baby” — her manuscript over to Verlan, along with her journals and notes, telling him he could finish and publish her book — could even have all the proceeds from it!
Did she tell them they could have ALL the credit for it too? I know Mother could be ridiculously magnanimous and philanthropic at times. But was she this magnanimous and philanthropic? Even if it were the case, too bad those who published her “baby” didn’t return ANY of her magnanimity and philanthropy. That is, they gave my mother NOT a bit of thanks nor credit for all the work she put into initiating then writing most of “The LeBaron Story” — her gift to Verlan LeBaron and “God’s work.” Nowhere do you even get a suggestion that anyone other than Verlan and Charlotte had anythong to do with writing this text! How sad!!
Turning her book idea and all her manuscript work over to the new head of “The Church of The First Born of the Fullness of Times was Mother’s loving and conscientious effort to help her brother Verlan look good and thereby better “build up the kingdom of God.” And it was her way of paying tithing to extend and defend “God’s work” because Verlan had taken over for her brother Joel F. LeBaron, “The One Mighty and Strong Prophet,” after Joel was murdered by his brother Ervil!
The work of finishing and compiling Mother’s grandiose book was largely done by my Uncle Verlan’s first wife Charlotte who did not know enough of the LeBaron family history to write it without relying heavily upon Info from my mother Esther LeBaron-McDonald de Spencer’s journals and notes!
Therefore, about two-thirds of “The LeBaron Story” came directly from my dear Mum’s half-completed manuscript, notes, and journal entries. I was around when she was writing part of her family history — the Mexico-LeBaron history. Delusional Mumma was so proud of her heritage she thought it MOST mportant the world know about her “saintly family” — the greatest and most holy family ever born into the world — next to Christ … perhaps — through whom “The One Mighty and Strong Prophet Joel LeBaron” was born. (Does this smell of megalomania?)
Mumma talked much about her writing endeavors — the “LeBaron History” she was birthing. Having read part of her manuscript and journals, I recognize her writing voice and input throughout “The LeBaron Story” that makes up a large part of this book.
Therefore, note the two different writer’s voices in “The LeBaron Story”! Anything with beautifully written structured writing, defined paragraphs, quotes, sources listed at the back of the book, etc., is my mother Esther LeBaron Spencer’s writing voice — part of her contribution. Whereas Aunt Charlotte, Uncle Verlan, et Al’s writing voices are in the chapters where everything is run together and there aren’t structured paragraphs, footnotes, etc.
But, even though Uncle Verlan and Aunt Charlotte used large parts of what Mother wrote, word for word — used her material exactly as she had written it — no editing whatsoever — as I said before, they gave my creative, ambitious, giving Mom not one BIT of credit — not one speck of acknowledgment … let alone so much as a howdy-do-dee or thank-you! It’s tantamount to plagiarism … and shameful how Charlotte and Verlan took ALL the credit for Mama’s talent, initiative, education, writing, and hard work!
But getting back to the body of the book, if you were to take the authors’ word for everything, the Mexico LeBarons are/were “a saintly people with a Godly mission.” Well, I beg to differ: Wishing doesn’t make it so. In other words, wishful thinking, such as self-proclaiming oneself as “The One Mighty and Strong,” and claiming one comes from “A Godly people with a Messianic mission” doesn’t make it true.
Much of the book’s lore takes place in Chihuahua, Mexico. Unfortunately, the authors tell the story in the words of true-believing, fundamentalist-Mormon-LeBaron cult members. In other words, it’s a highly biased history with a missionary purpose.
True to their fanatic religiosity, the book was mainly written to proselytize and promote Uncle Joel LeBaron’s cult: “The Church of the First Born of the Fullness of Times.” This presupposes a revision — rewritten history, then; i.e., a white-washing of the LeBarons. Thus, it’s myth in the making.
Nonetheless, I was able to glean a bit of useful information from it. So I’m glad the book was written despite the biased viewpoint because nobody else in the immediate Mexico LeBaron family has written a first-hand history about themselves — and it shows how biased they were, some of what their bias was, and how they used it to portray and supplant themselves as God’s only emissaries of “the truth,” His Work, and His Plan. It’s a bias that supports their grandiose sense-of-entitlement and efforts to achieve power, control, and position in the world. Suffice it to say, despite
Suffice it to say, despite “The LeBaron Story” needing a good Editor’s service, it was quite an endeavor and accomplishment on the part of my not well-educated nor well-read but extremely busy country uncle and his wives. All the while they were compiling Mother’s notes and manuscripts, then finishing this chronology, they were ever laboring under heavy pressures and disadvantages such as raising huge families of children while living in backward, primitive conditions–and running for their life. But book-buyer beware … be wary! That’s all I can say!
I was given a copy of this book many years ago when it first came out in 1981– fourteen years after I escaped the LeBaron cult in 1967. After reading the text, the obvious Messianic preaching and purpose, plus the revisionism, white-washing, and grandiose fabrications throughout the chronicle of “The LeBaron Story” got my gut so badly I was on my way to toss the book in the dumpster when two of Uncle Verlan’s daughters dropped in. They believed their father was a prophet, so were very happy to be gifted with “The LeBaron Story.” And I was very happy to get rid of it.
But thirty-six years later, for purposes of my own understanding and research, I had to re-buy the book! Argh! It’s going for around $45.00 in hardback on Amazon.com now. Wonders never cease to amaze me … so I wonder! Well, to each his own … and read on!
My Memoir: Ma, Pa, Me, and Polygamy on Parade — Part 23
“People see what they want to see
till they want to see.” Dena McLean
I left off in blog, “Pt 22: Ma, Pa, Me, and Polygamy on Parade,” saying: Mama preached polygamy and told people they would go to hell if they did not live it, but other than her first six months of marriage to Daddy, she never shared/ had to share her own husband/my father in the whole twenty-two years she was married to him.
But not long after Daddy died, she once again “helped save” a man by becoming his plural wife — as she had with Daddy. I mentioned this man in a previous blog: This new husband was an attractive LDS Mormon man around fifty years of age: Mel Orchard. He was as big a windbag as Ma! But a bigger kicker is his legal wife, a mainline Mormon, didn’t know the marriage took place! Mother was around forty-six or so, then.
She was not married to windbag Mel for long. In an effort to become his favorite wife, Ma manipulated a sixteen-year-old virgin into becoming old-man Mel’s third wife. To make a long story shorter, word has it she told this young girl and her family she’d had a revelation their daughter was to marry “her” husband Mel. But Ma’s ploy backfired on her.
After helping old-man-Mel secure his child bride, much to her ire, he neglected Mama. As you might imagine, her efforts and sacrifice to please her new husband did not bring in the appreciation and favoritism from him she believed and preached was supposed to happen when a woman got her husband another wife “to build up his kingdom.” (Mormon fundamentalism has all kinds of pie-in-the-sky, not-down-to-earth beliefs about plural marriage and how it’s supposed to work!)
My dreamer but let-down Ma was too jealous, hurt, and aggravated to remain married to her heart-throb Melvin after procuring for him a nubile maid only to find her manipulations ended up losing more of his love and time, rather than gaining her more of it. The old gentleman spent most of his time and energy trying to please his new teenage wife — trying to get it up and on with this adolescent “fawn”!
Not long after that, Ma took up with an old High School flame, a handsome Hispanic hunk — Catholic, charming, and very married — who lived in Chihuahua City, a-few-hours-drive from her residence in Colonia LeBaron. When she was in her teens, Mother’s parents would not allow her to marry him: He was of the wrong religion and race. But she and this stunningly gorgeous Mexican man had never fallen out of love.
Now, many years later and a lot of water under the bridge and despite his being married, his wife not knowing about it, and hisnot being Mormon, Mama carried on a back-room bedroom affair with him — perhaps hoping she could convert him to Mormon fundamentalism in time (?). I witnessed a part of that affair when, while visiting her in 1973, he chanced to drop by.
Mama told her kids and me she was taking her “friend” into her den “to discuss the gospel.” But I was an astute twenty-seven-year-old who had been around the block a few times by then. The sounds coming from her lioness’s den — squeaking springs combined with climactic screams — were not the sounds of discussing the gospel, no matter how exciting the discussion was!
(Continued in: “Pt 24: Ma, Pa, Me, and Polygamy on Parade”)
“Civilization is social order supporting cultural creativity.” Will Durant
Taking up from “Pt 20-A-J: Ma, Pa, Me, and Polygamy on Parade,” it bears restating that one of my Mormon fundamentalist sisters who married so many Misters never ever caught on … never bothered to catch on how to check out, before she took on her next “husband,” whether the new “hunk” was going to treat her right — though she married wrong.
This is only one example of how the foot-washing, stoic, three-ring circus of “The Law of Celestial Marriage” works — The “BED-lam” J. Smith and B. Young loosed in this world. Their helluva law ought to be renamed The Lawless Law of Telestial Marriage — the orthodox Mormon law that undoes what it took civilization 2000 years to build.
It’s barbaric, deplorable, and inexcusable that a “gospel” could teach doctrines that break up marriages, families, and civilized life — laws that leave the wife broken-hearted, betrayed, her home downtrodden, and her life and that of her kids damaged beyond repair.
It bears repeating that, thanks to problems with polygamy, children often grow up fatherless. And the abandoned or neglected wife or Ex-wife must play the role of both mother and father to her humongous family of small children – the perfect recipe for misery, poverty, deprivation … and under-class living. Unfortunately, the above is a typical scenario that both broken and unbroken families endure, thanks to Mormon polygamous doctrines.
I’m not proud of what my mother, sister, myself, and others like us do/did by becoming involved with an already-married man, though we were doing what we were taught God wanted us to do.
As I said before, I’m sad and chagrined that Mother had a part in the dire sufferings and hell Daddy’s first wife and children went through, even if it was part of Mother’s fanatic fundamentalist Mormon “privilege” — nay, her obligation to break up marriages; i.e., to move in and marry a man already married, to make sure he went to heaven by making sure he lived “The Law of Celestial Marriage” — “the holy law of matrimony” — no matter the consequences — and no matter whether she wanted or didn’t want to participate in this plural marriage mess — which, if given a choice, she didn’t want.
Mama only entered polygamy after much stalling and consideration and at a very late stage in a Mormon fundamentalist girl’s life: She was around 23. (Especially in Mother’s time, the mid-1940s, an orthodox Mormon girl was considered an old maid if not married by around age 18.) Mother only became a polygamous wife because it had been drilled into her that her salvation depended upon it!
Nonetheless, “An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation – nor does truth become error because nobody sees it.” —Mahatma Gandhi
(Continued August 18, in ” Pt 22: Ma Pa, Me, and Polygamy on Parade”)
People see what they want to see,
believe what they want to believe; It’s impossible to reason
with an irrational person. Stephany Spencer
I left off in “Pt 20-I: Ma, Pa, Me, and Polygamy on Parade” saying in the cult I came from,a Mormon fundamentalist man usually did not turn down a needy “woman in distress” — if she asked him to marry her. Most men usually don’t. Especially would-be Mormon White Knights in shining armor — especially if polygamy is “the law;” i.e., part of their religious tenets!
This is only one example of how the foot-washing, stoic, three-ring circus of “The Law of Celestial Marriage” works — The “BED-lam” Joe Smith and Brig Young spawned in this helluva world. I’ve coined their so-called “Celestial Law” The Lawless Law of Telestial Marriage: The orthodox Mormon law that undoes what it took civilization 2000 years to build!
It’s barbaric, deplorable, and inexcusable that any religion could teach doctrines that break up marriages, families, and civilized life — and create laws that leave the wife broken-hearted, betrayed, her home downtrodden, and her life and that of her kids smashed to smithereens.
Often, as said previously, thanks to the numerous problems involved in trying to live polygamy, children are all too often left to grow up fatherless. And the wife is forced to be both mother and father to her huge family of small kids – a sure way to instigate misery, poverty, deprivation — and the perfect recipe for under-class living.
As mentioned before, this is what happened in my father’s case. His oldest children still at home and even his Jr-High-age children had to quit school and go to work to help support Daddy’s abandoned family. His betrayed wife Eva had to leave the home and become a minimum-wage-earner.
He had 11 children with Eva. They ranged from 23 years of age to an infant not quite two months old When Eva divorced Daddy six months after he married my mother as his plural wife.
Who was left to tend the house and babies? The older children, of course. They had to play mama to the younger ones — had to grow up too fast in order to take on the responsibilities of premature homemakers. That’s what happened! Unfortunately, all of the above is a typical scenario most broken families endure, thanks to Mormon plural-marriage doctrines.
I’m not proud of what my sister and others like her do/did. I’m sad and chagrined that my brainwashed young Mother unknowingly and unwittingly had a part in the dire loss, suffering, and hell Daddy’s first wife and children went through, quadrupled by the fact they grew up without a father — if only because Daddy’s first wife couldn’t endure the pain of abuse, betrayal, and polygamy.
Unfortunately, it was part of Mother’s fundamentalist Mormon upbringing to break up marriages and leave behind a trail of tears and destruction. Of course, these stoic masochists never consider it “breaking up marriages.” They consider it “following God’s Commandments and putting ‘doing what’s right’ above all else”– because “the more you suffer the greater your rewards in heaven.”
Nevertheless, Mother, though she wouldn’t admit it to herself, could never stand to have done to her what she did to others: Caught between a rock and a hard spot, she never practiced polygamy with Father — except in the first six months of marriage as Father’s plural wife before Eva divorced him.
In their following 22 years of marriage after Eva left, Mother probably always intended to practice plural marriage once more but she procrastinated so never had to further endure living this dire law with Pa.
He married Mama in around 1943 as his second wife, his attempt to have a harem in order to follow his Prophet Joseph Smith’s commandment to live polygamy or be damned. But Mama soon ended up Papa’s only wife, just as he soon ended up monogamous again.
So it bears repeating: Mama never practiced what she preached and believed. She couldn’t — especially when it came to “practicing polygamy:” She never lived Plural Marriage with Papa the twenty-two years she had him — her handsome hard-working hunk — all to herself. She just talked about it.
(Continued August 2, 2018, in “Pt 20, A-J: Polygamy on Parade”)
Abuse: “When fear rules, Obedience is the only
survival choice.” Toni Morrison “God Help the Child”
My parents, though trying prodigiously to do what was right, foolishly spawned a bunch of foot-washing fundamentalist children bound by fear and preposterous, polygamy propaganda.
Example: Continuing with the expose of how one sister was affected by this Mormon fundamentalist dogma, I asked her why she dropped each “husband” — that is, those that hadn’t dropped her first. Her innocent, non-introspective response was:
“Because they didn’t treat me right, weren’t living polygamy right … and weren’t hard workers like Daddy — couldn’t compare to him. Therefore, I was smart to leave them. It taught them a lesson: They couldn’t get away with neglecting me and not supporting me and my children. And, of course, I had to choose a new man because women are supposed to have a husband as their head, their priesthood leader.”
She never could see that living polygamy “right” is wrong. Because living religious polygamy, itself, IS WRONG. It enslaves women, for starters. It’s a Satanic utopian ideal built on some male “profit’s” foolish, selfish, testosterone-based fantasy.
I say: Wake up, Sister, before another Mister makes you mother of yet another brother or sister by yet another Mister … who’s also “not like your father”!
The law of cause-and-effect screams, “If you touch a hot stove and it burns you, stop touching the damn thing! Back off!! The burn is obviously telling you you’re doing something wrong! So stop it!!”
But cult brainwashing demolishes people’s better judgment. It causes them to mistrust their own inner voice, to live in fear, and to follow their leader — their prophet, ignoring outward signs that what they’re doing is a mistake.
I call my sister’s “sleeping around” simply legalized prostitution — the ability and “right” to proposition any married or single man she wants as her next husband. What’s worse, in her brand of polygamy, the guy believes he can’t refuse! Nor does a man’s other wives usually have a say in it. What a great way to break down family life and ties, trust, and the sacredness of holy matrimony!
One way my sister courted a new mister was to simply ask him over to repair her plumbing — literally! And to sip ‘n’ sup a bit, afterward, as reward and enticement toward acquiring her latest heartthrob or male object/ husband.
I’m told it didn’t matter if the man she was chasing had a pregnant wife at home almost on the delivery table who desperately needed him by her side. Nothing mattered but living polygamy — i.e., “getting her plumbing serviced.”
An orthodox Mormon man usually did not turn down a needy “woman in distress.” Men usually don’t — especially would-be White Knights in shining armor — especially if polygamy is “the law”!
And get this: My Sis says, “I know I’m pretty. I don’t care how his other wives feel when I go after their husband. My having a husband and living plural marriage comes first.” This almost smells of sociopathy: She’s taking care of herself and “Screw the rest!”
And why should she care about other women? In polygamy, they are her competition. It’s not supposed to be the case in that belief system, but it is because she’s human: “The other women” get in her way when it comes to happiness and having her needs fulfilled.
Or, to look at it from a social-psychological viewpoint, perhaps she never got Daddy all to herself, as a little girl. By going after another woman’s husband, she’s simply subconsciously still trying to win her Dad from her mother (“the other woman”) when she goes after another person’s “Pa.”
Be all these conjectures what they may, the last I knew, she never caught on … never bothered to catch on how to check out, before she took on her next “husband,” whether the new hunk was going to work out — going to “treat her right” — though she married wrong! (But how do we even know she treated him right?)
Continued July 26, 2018, in “Pt 20-J: Ma, Pa, Me, and Polygamy on Parade