thoughts, whims, and delusions of a middle aged mama

Friday, April 10, 2009

Carolyn and Betty; It's A Strange Relationship

Well, I'm not up on everything, but I have a general idea of where things are. So it would seem that it would be a good idea to offer something here for people to comment on.
I just watched the Opera Show and Carolyn Jessop was on. I guess she was on as a response to the show last week where Opera interviewed Betty.
As a small note; Opera said she did not believe Betty when Betty said something about not being aware of the under-aged marriages. I think that Betty left when she was barely 14 yrs of age and did not return until she was eighteen and Warren Jeffs was in jail. So, all though she may have met a couple of them, for the most part, she was not aware of them.
Carolyn looked fat. I'm not saying that because I think there is anything wrong with being fat. I'm saying that as a comment on Carolyn herself. She also did not look like she wanted to be on television. She was trying to keep her words low key. She actually did not say allot. She made a few comments about the lost boys, but she did not say they were "lost'. She said while she was there Warren Jeffs told as many as 100 boys to leave at one time.
She also said several things about Betty that were pretty innocuous, and then it was over.
Any thoughts?


Stence said...


It's great that you're back.

I knew Carolyn somewhat growing up and was aware of her as a married woman w/children. She was definitely interesting to watch. What I saw of her was more like what I didn't see of her. I'll explain by telling about visiting at Uncle Merril's one day while she was at work or with friends or wherever she was. Another Mother there had her little girl (I honestly don't know whether it was Betty or not...soft reddish, curly hair). Anyway, this "other" Mother was taking care of this little girl that was four or five, potty training her. She explained that this little girl's Mother, Carolyn, didn't think that it was worth her time to teach any child under five or six anything. She just turned them over to someone else until they were worth doing something with. It quite surprised me because in all the teachings I'd received, I'd been taught that training of the children begins even before they're born.

Betty had some wonderful Mothers to bring her up. She's quite an admirable young lady and I don't think she lies. Most of us FLDS do our best not to lie and will definitely dance around a question rather than lie about it. Some of us have gotten to the point where we realize we don't have to answer everything asked of us and wonder sometimes if anyone else had heard of Brigham Young's motto of "Mind your own business."

Betty probably didn't stick her nose into everyone else's business to find out dates and times, or if and what.

Anonymous said...

Betty had to have known that her 1/2 brothers have been indicted for marrying underage girls and that her 1/2 sister was married to warren jeffs when she was 12. she has been with barbara in converse or wherever it is that barbara lives instead of the ranch and was there during the time merrianne was returned to state custody.

i thought carolyn's thoughts on why etty returned were probably right on the money. the comments from the panel about her wearing her FLDS clothing at a public school were right on. teenagers can be cruel toward anyone different or perceived to be different.

stence, i'm not saying your not telling the truth, but with all carolyn went through with her handicapped child, i'm not buying that she thought they weren't worth anything below the age of 5.

rericson said...

I guess it depends on your definition of marriage. If you use it it the traditional use of Americans, well then yes. But if you use it in the traditions of their group, then no.

TxBluesMan said...


They consider themselves married for 'time and eternity' when the ceremony is conducted.

The FLDS doesn't consider it a betrothal, or an engagement, or a promise ring. They consider it a marriage.

Betty knew that her 12 year old sister had been married to Warren, and lied. It was pretty much the same as Willie explaining how the pure white bed on the third floor was used by the groundskeeper.

By the way, welcome back.

cheese said...

The question Oprah asked was "Do you know of girls within the community though who are younger, who are married, and have had children, and they were not eighteen?" Betty then answered "Not really"

rericson said...

Okay. Each comment has to be directly on target.
You learn something new each and everyday. We get so used to answering questions here, that we forget how literal they are.

Betty said...

I don't know how anyone could look at that bit of video and not think she was lying. Her body language and facial expressions changed. And she's living on the ranch with...what...400 people at this point? And she doesn't know her own relatives her own age have babies? That's such an obvious lie.

I'm glad you are doing better.

Anonymous said...

Regina, glad you are doing better, but geez, catty? Carolyn DID NOT look fat! And even if she did what does that have to do with her relationship with Betty. What purpose did it serve for you to write that? Hope if made you "feel" better to insult someone else, but it sure doesn't shine a positive light on you.

rericson said...

I guess if you're looking for her to be lying, you see just that. Where if you're looking for her to be telling the truth, you see just that.
It isn't in what she looks like, it's in how you see it.

I didn't mean she looks fat as some sort of character assination. I meant it as a 'just in case you didn't notice'...
To me she looks like she needs some sort of medical help. I don't know. If you want to see it as catty, be my guest. It wasn't meant that way.

WC said...


No one definition of marriage can be applied to all cultures. Your definition of marriage can't be applied to the FLDS.

silver said...

"I didn't mean she looks fat as some sort of character assasination. I meant it as a 'just in case you didn't notice' "

The classic escape hatch.

"Whether right or wrong, we judge others by their actions, ourselves by our intentions." IITMOC on "Texas Polygamy" 8/17/07

rericson said...

Just in case you didn't catch it; I've had a stroke and can't say everything the way I'd like.
I'f you don't like the way I say it, maybe you can say it for me.

silver said...


TxBluesMan said...


In Eldorado, the only definition of marriage that matters is that of Texas. It is clear, black letter law. That's why we have indicted 'em.

Tuffy said...

Can someone tell me where I can watch Oprahs interview with Carolyn? I would like to watch her interview with Betty as well. Where do I find them on the net? Thanks 4 your time

Anonymous said...


So VERY glad to see you back! You have recovered amazingly well and your wit is as good as ever.

Linda Lamb

Anonymous said...

Carolyn was a nice person when she was FLDS, before she chose to be bitter and hateful. But since she left she is NOT what she once was. As long as people believe her lies she will still have her fame. It is that simple. May Betty's book when it comes out shed the real truth and let the truth be for all to choose who to believe.

Anonymous said...


It seemed to me that Betty was qualifying her reply of "Not really" to Oprah's question. She didnt answer "No." And she appeared to be trying hard to answer honestly. There are liars in this world that are obvious and there are those who try not to answer in a negative way that might hurt others.

Truthfulness is absolutely best. Being open and honest is best, but when it comes to protecting family - most people are going to feel pushed to the limits and probably go beyond their usual truthfulness boundaries. Usually a peaceful person, I can turn into a mama bear when one of my children or family members are accused of something or even when protecting my husband from churchy criticism (original term) I might not agree with him on everything, but I dont often admit that to others. :)

I'm honestly glad to see more and more flds members being open and allowing us to understand more of how they live and believe. There is something to be respected and learned from their ways.

Linda Lamb

silver said...

"There is something to be respected and learned from their ways."

Linda, I agree.

Anonymous said...

Betty is so sweet, I am sure she is sorry she missed out on getting married because Warren was in prison.

I guess its all bad timing!

Diesel said...

Its been a few days since I watched the interview but if I remember right Oprah said "Do you know of any underage marriages in this community" (not exact but something to that effect) and Betty shook her head and said "No, not really".

Now, watching the video I would say that Oprah didn't word the question very well. The word 'underage' has been quite disputed among all parties. Weather she meant underage by the State's terms or weather she meant underage by the Church standards we don't know, but again there really isn't a set Church standard since some have been married (there we go again, a word that can have several different meanings, when I say married I mean betrothed) at age 14 and some in their late 20's or even early 30's. So all the way around that was just a poorly worded question that could be taken several different ways depending on who you ask.

If it were me asked the question I probably would have asked her to clarify a little better what she meant.

Also note that Betty was quite nervous (as I can fully understand I would be) during the interview.

Anonymous said...

I doubt that Carolyn Jessop's account of her life in the FLDS is a lie b/c there are numerous others who have escaped w/the same experiences. I have read Carolyn's book as well as Elissa Wall's book, & have seen numerous others interviewed with uncannily similar stories. Carolyn has credibility to me b/c other ladies have lived the same nightmare & escaped to tell of it. As far as the FLDS being respectable & something we can learn from, well not so much (IMHO). Yes, I think it's admirable that they are taught family values, no sex outside of marriage, the girls dress modestly & learn to bake & sew. All that is great. What's not so great is that the women list the father's name on birth certificate as "unknown" so they can later trot down to their local welfare office to collect food stamps & welfare to support all those children. It's not the children's fault, but the adults making these decisions to be dishonest is not respectable. First of all, it's dishonest & it takes money from us taxpayers. I had the number of children I felt that I could adequately support on my income that I work for. And now, my taxes are supporting Merill Jessop's over-50 children (as an example) while his wives collect welfare & food stamps. If you were to add up all the FLDS families doing this scam, it must be costing us taxpayers millions. And, yes, I know the FLDS members are not the only people scamming the government out of welfare & foodstamps, but since we are discussing them being respectable & worthy of learning from, I must say that I do not find this aspect of their culture admirable. It is also hypocritical on several levels--first of all they are obviously lying when they write that the father's name is "unknown". Secondly, they pretend as if they are an unmarried woman who had sex w/someone & she can't even remember his name---that would be an unforgiveable sin in their culture if it were true, yet they justify that it's ok to live this lie to get welfare money b/c they hate the government & think it's ok to steal from it (they call it "bleeding the beast"). So they hate the g'ment & don't feel the g'ment's laws about plural marriage or underage marriage apply to them, but then it's OK to take advantage of that same government to get welfare & food stamps. Someone give me a break!

smile said...


You are harldy well informed. The birth certificates do not read "unknown" The father's name is simply left blank, and certainly not so they can collect government assistance. It is because the government hates our people, and they will seize birth certificates to try and prove a "crime" Two consenting adults living in a marriage relationship that is unacceptable to the general public. It is for their own protection. Also, "bleeding the beast" is a term unheard of among FLDS. That term was something made up by someone trying to smear the FLDS and make them look bad. Most of these people are self supporting, and anyone who is on government assistance legally qualifies for it. There have been reports from the government offices themselves saying the FLDS have not committed welfare fraud, but haters like you continue to spew the lie. The FLDS pay massive property taxes, it is probably our taxes that are supporting people like you! I know Carolyn personally, and Elissa Wall, and I can tell you without a doubt that they both wrote a book full of lies. If you want to beleive it, that is up to you, though how you could be dubed is beyond me. They both change their stories constantly. It is amuzing to me that anyone at all could beleive either of them, but if you do not want to know the truth, Satan will be happy to fill you with lies.

Diesel said...


Lets say that everyone of the FLDS families were on welfare and it was costing the taxpayers lets say an average of $1000 per family per month and the average family being 12 people (these are all hypothetical numbers). If this were a true circumstance figure out how much the FLDS are saving taxpayers by going to private schools. Lets an average of $3500 per student per year and multiply that by 12 that is $42,000 per year.

The media and the state NEVER say anything about how much they save by not funding our education they only focus on the few families who are on welfare.

Out of the thousands of people who have left the FLDS there are VERY FEW who go and make a big deal out of it. If it was really like Carolyn says I'm sure all of those who have left (or "escaped" or "kicked out" or were "ousted" gee. . . make up your mind) would be telling their stories and trying to get rid of us like Carolyn and Elissa are, but not many others are. If you would get your facts from both sides of the table you wouldn't sound like a fool when commenting on the blogs.

Anonymous said...

Hi Smile, no worries, you aren't supporting me. Based on the check we sent in to the IRS last Wednesday (the 15th), I think we could be supporting several families other than our own. We are in an income bracket where the government considers us "rich" but we certainly don't feel "rich". By the time we pay for our children's private school (we don't use the public schools either), give to many charities, tithe, save for college, and pay our local, state, & federal taxes, we feel like we are paying coming and going. You and I can amicably agree to disagree on other things, but as for my family & whether we are mooching off anyone, I did have to answer that one. Have a great weekend.

Roy said...

Betty might not be lying about not knowing about the underage marriages. She just might be in denial about it.

Pliggy said...

Certainly don't want Texas to have any competition, right? That underage marriage stuff is supposed to be reserved to the government and not to families and their religious leaders. What do they think this is, America or something?

From 2001-2007 the Texas government forced(using their own rhetoric) 101,648 teenage girls to get married. 406 of those were girls 14 or younger, and 4,003 were to men ten years older.

Anonymous said...

Well, anyone interested in the “wholesome” jessop family really should read the latest posts on

Seems bab’s and merril’s son is a real pervert! Likes really little girls, probably can’t get any women to even look at him so he has to expose himself to 3, 4, 5 year olds. And poor little MJ already being sexually molested by her big brother at such a young age, no wonder she didn’t think anything of being married at 12.

Anonymous said...


Check it out,

Plykid made another appearance!

PlyKid here under D3 and Kharma

Anonymous said...

Excuse the code typo, This one


Anonymous said...


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First I am a mother, and grandmother....that is probably the single most important aspect of my life. Then I am a family advocate for a large, national advocacy organization. I work primarily in "systems advocay", helping to identify needs and change policies in children's behavioral health. And I love my dogs, my garden, my pond and fish, and trashy murder mysteries and the occasional shot of good scotch.... Fell free to post a note in whatever the most recent entry is...I love meeting new people!

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