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So, to start, the law of chastity, as officially defined, is: No sexual relations except with a spouse to whom you are legally and lawfully married.

The spouse part we understand, but what exactly is a “sexual relation”?

Because not only does The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints forbid erotic experimentation (“necking, necking and petting, heavy petting, and intercourse”) outside of marriage, it also places married heterosexual couples with children firmly on the pedestal at its theological core.

From Hardy’s telling, it doesn’t matter how devout she is, the longer she remains single and the more she pursues her own interests — like writing, scuba diving and making out — the more she is made to feel an outsider at church.

PART I: Black-letter law; “normal” analysis Let’s start with the points that everyone agrees on.

I’m going to be extra cautious and nail these down, so that when things get strange in Part II, we can be sure that the assertions are based on correct doctrine.

Interwoven with humorous, oftentimes awkward and painful dispatches from the battlefields of love, Hardy describes the waves of grief, fear and exhilaration that arise as one fact dawns on her: The personal cost she is being asked to bear in the name of obedience to the demands of her religion might not be worth the supposed reward she’s been promised in heaven.

Despite what her Mormon leaders would have her believe, she begins to consider that this sacrifice of self might not even be what God wants.

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Men and women are co-creators with God in providing bodies for His spirit-children.He gradually moved to be halfway on top of me, with one of his legs between mine.Our hands never wandered to any private areas, but we were both aroused, and things were still sensual enough with his hands rubbing over my back.God has established laws which govern the use of this sacred power.Satan, on the other hand, introduces thousands of ways to compromise, ruin, or corrupt the gift of procreation. Smith expressed it: "Sexual union is lawful in wedlock, and if participated in with right intent is honorable and sanctifying."Confessions" is Hardy’s account of her own sexual awakening, which turns out to be inextricably linked to seizing the right to think and act for herself.


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