I studied unaltered Mormon history along with a few other polygamy stories and discovered many difficulties surrounding the practice of polygamy.
Joseph Smith was sealed to several women, I don’t remember the exact number. Interestingly enough, he was sealed to men too. What does this mean? I suggest studying about sealings to someone that has received salvation. God will help answer this question as one becomes ready.
Joseph Smith only fathered children with his wife Emma
After studying Mormon history, I realized that Joseph Smith was being sealed to women for a very different reason than to consummate a marriage and to have children. Joseph Smith had nine children with his wife, Emma, so it is obvious that he could father children. However, he had NO offspring with the other women he was sealed to. Is it possible that being “sealed” has other meanings besides being married? This is an important question to learn and ponder about.
Scripture concerning polygamy
In the Book of Mormon, it states that a man should only have one wife and to do otherwise is called whoredoms that are an abomination.
Wherefore, my brethren, hear me, and hearken to the word of the Lord: For there shall not any man among you have save it be one wife; and concubines he shall have none.
For I, the Lord God, delight in the chastity of women. And whoredoms are an abomination before me; thus saith the Lord of Hosts. Jacob 2:27-28
This scripture supports my decision to continue to practice monogamy.
Brigham Young polygamy stories
Prior to leaving the Mormon church, we served a mission for the church in Volgograd, Russia. One of our Institute students was reading about Brigham Young and was very disturbed by her findings. At that time we were unaware of the true history and story of Brigham Young. We told this young student that people are imperfect and make mistakes and that there is no church without imperfect people.
When I returned from Russia, I had a desire to read a book written by Brigham Young’s 19th wife called Wife No. 19 Ann Eliza Young. Briefly, Ann Eliza’s testified that Brigham Young was controlling, dishonest, cared more about money than people, and even secretly leveraged murders. If you want to learn more about Brigham Young, I feel “Wife No. 19″ was written by a good woman with righteous desires to speak the truth. I feel God helped Ann Eliza Young, a very courageous woman to stand against her very powerful husband, Brigham Young, and was blessed to escape from the bondage she was being held under. I think the polygamy that Brigham Young practiced was very different than what Joseph Smith practiced or intended.
Polygamy Stories describe emotional, mental, spiritual and physical challenges.
Another book I read about polygamy titled Escape by Carolyn Jessop. It is sobering to read the emotional, mental, spiritual, and physical difficulties she and her children endured while practicing polygamy.
Irene Spencer escapes from polygamy
I believe the words of Irene Spencer in this video. She shares the highlights of her years living in polygamy. She also wrote a book called Shattered Dreams. There are also quite a number of polygamy stories on YouTube if you are interested in learning more about what life is like when living in polygamy.