I found that I took much less notes in this principle than in previous weeks. Once again I lead with the scriptures that I read ahead, and then come back and go through the principle in the book. I find this generates questions that I will then attempt to discover the answers to. During this week of study I found that reading the principle made me want to return to the scriptures and my notes to find an answer or a different perspective on what I had read.
This principle discusses the difference between external controls and internal values, and how those two vary in effectiveness to spur long-term and healthy changes in our lives.
Society in the last 100 years has focused on leveraging external controls as a means to protect and safeguard us. Have you purchased a ladder lately? Have you seen the amount of external controls that are present? Half of the warning labels make me try and think up a scenario that brought about the label itself.
Emphasis on leveraging external controls to shape behavior instead of our internal values provide a carnal or worldly view of healing and long-term success and happiness. External controls focus on rewards and punishments. The first example that came to mind was Internet Filters and Firewalls. These are not bad things, and are recommended to help us and our families stay safe online. It is leaning solely on them, and not instilling the proper values and desires around the material they may find online that makes the perspective short-sided. Internal Values must be put in place that help ourselves, our spouse, and our children know and feel what they believe so they are able to make decisions ahead of time. They are then able to leverage their values, desires, will, and beliefs to “Be what they believe.”
“It didn’t matter what the child though, felt, believed, or desired – Just as long as he or she behaved.” This quote from the author made me reflect and see that I need to listen to my kids more than to dictate behavior. Even when I know the proper course of action, I need them to explain themselves so I can help them understand what they are experiencing and going through. All too often we dictate behavior instead of allowing teaching moments.
Are diapers and spouses similar? I have talked with a number of ABDLs whose spouses dictate what will and will not happen. They don’t truly understand their little, and the support and aid that diapers provide them. It must be a two-way street, a conversation where both can grow and be happy. It is hard because the little, Adult Baby, or Diaper Lover may not know how to properly express themselves because they have never said some of these things out loud. That space must be available so they can explain their use of an external control (diaper, paci, onsies….) to help them balance and be able to direct their internal controls better.
This is the balance that can be tricky. At what point are we leaning too heavily on diapers? We must be able to leverage them as a tool, and not a controlling force. When we allow them to dictate decision making, we MUST step in with the help of our spouse and other supports to bring our internal controls back into the light.
It is not His will, but our own that is ultimately the “bottom line.” We know what our parents want of us. We know what Heavenly Father wants of us. We must then choose what we want, by our actions. Our actions are the biggest demonstration of our testimonies. How we choose to act in public and private is when we truly learn who we are. We are not perfect, but we choose whether we are strengthening ourselves or declining in our conditioning to be a better person.