I was in an older singles ward and began coming out of the closet. I was referred to LDS Social Services for counseling and I had a good relationship with my bishop. As a member of an older singles ward, clearly I was not the only gay member and a few of us started to connect. We were active and had temple recommends, pretty much the same as everyone else except we had the added challenge of making sense of our sexual orientation. During this same time, the Stake President of a neighboring stake had a monthly fireside for gay members. I attended that meeting regularly, even though this was not my stake. I asked about doing something like that in my stake, and that request was not viewed kindly. The bishop I liked was diagnosed with cancer and was released. An interim bishop was put in and it seemed that man, while nice and probably well-intentioned, was trying to bring the singles ward more in line with what the Stake President wanted. During this same period, I realized that being gay was simply a part of who I was. Not only could I not change my sexual orientation, but I shouldn't. I wasn't ready to date or to do anything that violated my temple covenants but it was clear I had to be honest with myself. My own father had been called as bishop in his stake and he and mom had accepted me. Word spread about me and I became more and more open about it. In my area, there was a counselor in the Elder's Quorum that was gay and I had a good model for how I could coexist in a religion that was otherwise hostile to people like me. In fact, the neighboring Stake President from the "more LGBT friendly" stake encouraged me to switch to a family ward because in his opinion I was a family of one, complete and whole, and I belonged with other families, not in a ward where I let pressure to marry or to pair up.
Several months later, we had a high councilman speak. He was a liberal voice the Stake liked to point to as a hip member. He gave a fairly typical speech, probably uplifting in parts, but then went off the rails on homosexuality, boasting about his role in the successful effort to repeal a recent gay equality decision at a local city or school district (I don't recall specifically, but it was a government agency, not a private company). He thought nothing of dismissing the gay and lesbian community, quoting church leaders, and driving the point home that gays were a scourge and we needed to fight them. I'm paraphrasing and summarizing his words, He didn't use "fight" exactly, but it was something along those lines: we needed to stand up and protect our families and our children. It never occurred to him that some members of the older singles ward might actually be gay or lesbian.
I was dealing with the recent suicide of a friend and the comments from the high councilman were too much. I held it together though the meeting but lost it in the lobby afterward when a friend asked me to sign up for a temple session. She said she hadn't heard the guy say anything I heard him say, and that was another moment of harsh realization for me: he said what he said! I heard him, yet here I was speaking to a college educated woman who had heard the same stuff but filtered it out--the anti-gay stuff was invisible to her. She was in tears and went over to a mutual friend's house immediately afterward to tell him I was gay. That didn't go well because he said "I know. I'm gay, too." He then went on to tell her a number of men in the ward were.
I got home, collected my thoughts, calmed down, and penned a letter to the high councilman with a copy to the Stake President. I knew that would start a process but I could not stand by and not challenge what was said. The Stake President soon wanted to meet with me. In the meeting, he outed a fellow stake member, telling me I should be more like him. He also went back and forth, saying there was no such thing as being gay--I wasn't actually gay, just in a state of arrested development--to saying "the gays" were a very real threat to his stake and it was his duty to protect the innocent members. He also told me at least one women told him she felt she was in competition with me for the elders. Seriously, he told me that! The interview was hostile from the beginning, with the Stake President telling me he was in charge and I was subject to him. The conversation went downhill fast. He said I would be healed in the next life and I had to be celibate in this life. I pushed back and said that sounded like an encouragement for suicide, or at least it could be construed that way by someone who was struggling: hey, if everything is going to fine in the next life, then why not speed the process? The Stake President snapped back at me and said I was twisting his words. I disagreed. He had never been challenged on the basic Mormon idea that telling a gay person they were sick and could be restored in the next life could actually be a subtle message signaling what a person should do.
Then he went fishing for sexual transgressions. He asked me if I had anything to confess to him and I responded by saying I had a current recommend. He asked again, and told me to answer his question--he was getting angry at this point. I again repeated I had a current recommend and he had no reason to assume anything was amiss. He asked again, demanding an answer. This is where my memory is foggy, but I held my ground. I told him my sexual history was none of his business unless I chose to make it his business. I had a valid temple recommend and could answer all the questions accordingly. I said something along the lines that if he continued to want to ask me questions of a sexual nature, I was happy to answer honestly, but I would expect he would therefore be open to answering my questions about him and his wife, and my first question would be how recently it was that his wife performed fellatio on him. He was seething and told me that was none of my business...and yet he didn't see anything wrong asking me deeply personal questions.
I should add, that I remained calm during the interview and never raised my voice. I had been Mormon my whole life and knew how the system worked.
In order for me to be effective, I had to not react, be cool, and calm. I accomplished that. Then came the ultimatum. The SP was flustered and told me if I wanted to continue to attend church and be a faithful member, as I knew I should, I had to pretend to be straight, even if I wasn't. Those were his words: "pretend to be straight." He went on to add that if it got back to him that I had told anyone, LDS or not, that the other man in the stake was gay, he would take that as a sign of insubordination and apostasy and there would be consequences.
I happened to know the Stake President was a convert and recovering alcoholic. He was big into AA and always talked about his group in church meetings. I let his words hang in silence, and then asked him what his group members would say if they heard what he had just told me: that it was better to pretend than to be honest; that it was better to do what other people told him to do than to do what he knew was right. I said I was a seventh generation Mormon man who had discovered he was gay. I was gay and Mormon. Each aspect of my being was an integral part of who I was and I could not give up one for the other. That was my truth. The Stake President exploded at that point. My comment about honesty and AA had hit a nerve and the man was actually shouting at me. He was frustrated he had nothing on me to call a court over, and as I left, he said I was on a dangerous path to apostasy and if I continued, I would never know what happiness was.
I remained calm in the interview but I was dying inside. As soon as I drove out of the parking lot, I lost it. I sobbed uncontrollably and had to pull into a shopping center parking lot let out all the emotions. My life in the church would be different going forward, and given the multi-stake reach of our singles ward, the Stake President had jurisdiction over me anywhere I lived in the area. I transferred my records into the neighboring LGBT friendly stake. I never returned to that ward or stake.
At that time in my life, my church membership was important to me. I didn't speak to anyone for a week, when my sister called. We chatted a bit but then she said it was clear something was up. I told her what had happened, which made me break down again. She cried with me, but added the SP was full of it and I knew better than to believe him. I said I knew that but this was a big deal that put me in the crosshairs of a church court. She was great (I'm tearing up writing about this--I always do) and said she loved me and there was no way in hell I was going to go through this alone. I soon got a phone call from my dad. Keep in mind he was a sitting bishop. He said he I knew he and mom loved me, that I knew who I was, and no matter what happened, we would do this as a family.
So, it was an interesting week: I saw the crappy side of the church with this abusive Stake President, but also got to see the good side of the faith and philosophy not only with my folks but with other friends. When I recounted the incident to the Stake President in the neighboring LGBT friendly stake,
a man who would attend my wedding 13 years later, he was floored. He was at a loss for words as to why someone would conduct a priesthood interview as my Stake President had, and why those kinds of questions would have been asked. I credit that Stake President and his outreach firesides
for giving me a soft landing. I was able to make a healthy exit from the LDS community and go on to have a productive life. My husband and I have been together over twenty years. My life is the opposite of what the abusive Stake President said it would be. My story made it up to Elder Holland.
It is also not unique: lots of people have stories like mine.There are many things I dislike about the Mormon community but I would not trade the friends I made or the people who had a positive influence on my life.
I have not been brave enough to share my experience.
I was married for almost two decades to a man involved in drugs, child pornography, criminal activity and emotionally/sexually abusing my children and myself. I was often yelled at, threatened, belittled for wanting to study and then told not to. He wouldn’t work much and I supported him. I was so blind to a lot of his behaviors and I was told in priesthood blessings to "stay as he will change."
He had spasmodic periods of being righteous and living the gospel, but all the while, secretly doing pornography and more. He was very intense and scary .
I was always of the mindset of protecting him and being the good wife. The worse he became, the more I repented and blamed myself. I almost committed suicide.
He told me how fat I was, how undeserving I am, how prideful and self-righteous I was.
My children and I finally had a family member help us get to the police and take out a protective order. We were to scared to tell the police about his child pornography addiction, armed robberies, ect . Mentally we all were pretty messed up.
The worst? Our Branch President, Counselo and a Stake Leader are the local lawyers in town and own the law firm. The day of the court hearing, my daughter and I were placed in a safe room while he had all three leaders with him. Not one came to check on us. The Stake Leader touted my ex as being in a position of caring for his aging uncle and could not afford to pay bills. He has all the support of church members and I have none. No one has even come to check on us! We are literally shunned.
I get an occasional text of activities and in the beginning a few texts from BP asking how we were! I couldn’t reply to a text.
After the divorce, I actually found love. It is gossip around town that I was having an affair!
All of this really broke me . To the church, it feels like abused women are of no worth.Things have to change with the church. With the Joe Bishop scandal, protect LDS kids, and me too movement, the leaders are going to have to face this and stop pushing it aside.
I have mainstream mormon friends who call us all apostate for not going through the ‘right’ channels when we start protesting these injustices. It makes me frustrated, as they are not able to judge without going through this situation themselves. Many of us have tried to go through right channels. But if you tell them that, they then say that we have done all we can and it is now in the Lords hands and we should not pursue it anymore as we are tearing down the good name of the church and our leaders!
Thanks for letting me vent and share. Reading these posts have given me hope that I am not the only one.
My sibling is on a mission and recently became unwell. When he told the mission president (who is not a medical professional), he was given something from a pharmacy. He had a reaction to this medication. He became cyanotic and extremely anxious because he felt terrible. His skin was blue and he had no idea what was going on so he contacted ME. They never took him to a hospital. They never referred him to a doctor.
Then, after 3 days of vomiting, they had him out laying cement at a member's house. I wish there was a safer why to address these concerns with the healthcare of missionaries. When they have to run these concerns through the Mission President, it can be dangerous and harmful if it is not addressed appropriately by a medical professional.
While serving his mission, my brother caught his companion with child pornography. My brother was physically threatened by the Mission President when he brought this crime to his attention. He was then told to stay quiet or get sent home early and it would be "dishonorably." They transferred the pedophile-companion to another zone.
My brother told my parents of this incident when he got home. My parents tried to take it up the chain but got gagged and were unsuccessful.
My story is a little different.
In puberty, I began to hallucinate and have psychotic symptoms. This was before mental health was taken seriously so I had zero treatment besides people unhelpfully pointing out that all my peers managed to not be psychotic. I did my best to hide things but it just got worse and worse until at 16, my parents just couldn't take it anymore. They sought help from the bishop. The bishop treated me like I was rebellious, obviously on drugs, definitely sleeping around, and possibly worshiping Satan. (Because this was when that was a thing.)
Now I know some people reading this will say, "But that's just one bishop." Yes, it was. Let me make this clear that the vast majority of my Young Women leaders went out of their way to make me feel loved (though they didn't understand the mental health thing.) My seminary teachers told me that they believed in me. I was surrounded by LDS adults who did not believe I was bad. In fact, the next bishop told me, "Nuts to him!" and signed my BYU endorsement.
But that's the problem with Mormonism. Even those supportive leaders were teaching me that the bishop had special insight, was in charge, and in essence a soothsayer - one who tells truths that others can't even perceive. So yes, even if the numbers are weighted in the positive direction, it only takes ONE man. It's set up that way.
I knew what he said was completely off the mark. But it made me wonder what I was doing to project such bad vibes. I wondered if I was so lazy and careless that I might as well be a junkie. I wondered if I thought too many lurid thoughts and I might was well be sleeping around. I knew that even though I read my scriptures, prayed, and spoke nicely, most of the time I certainly wasn't close to perfect. Maybe the bishop just saw how horrible I was really.
In the years that followed I had a string of very abusive, dysfunctional, and manipulative romantic and friend relationships. In every one I would see red flags, feel them disregard my boundaries. But I would tell myself that chances were that I was just bad and dysfunctional and they were normal. I mean, look at my track record! Every time I even started having symptoms I would engage in self-destructive behaviors. This just attracted more abusers, feeding the cycle. It took so many years for me to trust and care about myself and live life as a balanced, healthy, functional individual.
When I tell people this story, sometimes they ask me why I would blame a bishop for everything. Let me be clear - I don't. He didn't give me the bum genes (schizophrenia runs in my family.) He didn't create the atmosphere and culture where mental health was poorly understood. He didn't make the structure and culture of the church. He didn't even know it was wrong for him to spout off his untrained mouth. But his ignorance didn't make the situation any less abusive.
I also will object to anyone telling me I'm not taking responsibility. I was given no treatment before I was 18, remember? I had to ask what an "intake" was when I first went in to therapy. I had to pay for psychiatric treatment as a low wage earner in a time before health insurance covered it. I spent the hours in cognitive behavioral therapy to re-build my self-esteem. I spent even more time practicing meditation and other stress-relieving practices. I always knew that having a positive outcome rested mostly on me.
I often hear that I should have been mentally strong enough to understand that he was untrained and to discard his condemnation. Yes. And I went out and did exactly that - it just took years, money, maturity, therapy, and hard mental work. Those were things I didn't have access to at age 16. No one had prepared me to defy a bishop.
I'm not telling this story to shame or condemn him (though I'd love it if he were more sympathetic to mental health issues now.) I tell this story because it illustrates how the entire structure of the church is set up so that one cloud can overshadow the whole sun. I care about this because there are many adults who loved me in my darkest hours. They have children and grandchildren in this church. Tomorrow it might be them. If anything I say can make someone stop and think about the power we give the leadership, I will say it.
I was living in the East working as a Flight Attendant, raising my only son and really proud of myself. Some church members and leaders looked down on me for being a Flight Attendant. But it worked for me. I loved being home for several days at a time and the bishop’s wife in my ward was my babysitter for many years. I started dating a Pilot. No, he was not Mormon. I liked that actually.
One day I received a letter from my Bishop.
It read “If you don’t leave this relationship with this non-Mormon pilot and straighten out your life you will be taken by Cancer” and“God will take you home.”
I was beyond devastated. I had been through Cancer twice and didn’t need to hear that I was so bad that God would take me off the earth. I was so angry because I loved this pilot. We’d been together for three years and had a wonderful future ahead of us. But, I broke up with the pilot and then confronted the Bishop. I found out that The Bishop wrote that letter in an attempt to bring me back into the fold. I don't personally believe this was his only motive.
The Bishop lost his job position, and he had hired me to write for his family company, as I was also a songwriter singer. I quit the airline. He promised 100k a year.
This is where it gets bad.
I never got paid. Seven months and he never paid me. He had hired others in the ward and got all their money. Then spent it. I told my Stake President about this fraudulent activity.
Bishop was removed. An attorney was put in his place.
They sent him to jail and his cousin to prison. The ward was falling apart.
I went home to my mom and dad’s house with my son and looked for a gun to use on myself.
My career was over.
My boyfriend went on to another relationship and got married.
I was so lost.
I opened up the yellow pages and found the first therapist and set an appointment. I eventually got back up again and started a new career as a Flight Attendant.
That bishop and his family of ten, moved to Missouri, to usher in the Second Coming. He ruined my life. He used his position to manipulate and coerce me, and as he was my leader and I followed him.
I was sexually abused by more than one person as a child. I learned early on that extreme compliance was the best way to keep safe. When I was 7 years old, I was sexually abused by a teenager in the ward who regularly babysat while my parents were in mid-week church meetings. When I told my mother, she and my father (who was in the bishopric) talked to the bishop about what to do with the teen. They decided to forgive him rather than report, and the teen suffered no consequences. When I saw my abuser passing the sacrament the next week, I internalized the belief that since he wasn't punished, everyone must've thought that I was the one to blame. At a young age, I was convinced that I was a bad girl. (The teen who abused me went on to abuse 13 other girls.)
From ages 7-9, I compulsively prayed every night for forgiveness for an unrelated white lie I had told in second grade. Looking back, I realize that the deep shame I experienced during those prayers had less to do with the white lie and more to do with the self-blame I internalized because my abuser was never held accountable. I had hoped that my baptism would clear my conscience, but it did not. In fact, the bishop's interview I had at the time, as well as the routine bishop's interviews I experienced as a young teen, made me feel as if I was lying every time I claimed to be worthy. This, combined with some really harsh early bishops asking sexually inappropriate questions, started a cycle of shame that led to eating disorders and on-going suicidal ideation as a teen.
Later, when I was 16, I was raped by my boyfriend. I went and told my new bishop about it. Actually, I don't know that I was even able to call it rape at the time, but I told him that I was physically held and kept from leaving and that my repeated 'no's were ignored and that I cried through the whole thing. I remember desperately hoping at the time that he would tell me that it wasn't my fault. Instead, he asked for explicit details. He then told me that men can't be held fully responsible for their behavior because their urges are too strong and that it was my job, as a 'guardian of virtue,' to make sure that my 'no's weren't ignored. He read me the passage from The Miracle of Forgiveness that said that it was better that a woman die defending her honor than that she be raped. I was told to read the entire book, which was a shame-fest in and of itself. The most painful thing was that he then told me that I needed to write an apology letter to my rapist for putting him in a 'bad situation.' The whole conversation was thick with shame, and the cherry on top was that I was to be publicly humiliated in front of my congregation for seven months, not being able to pray publicly or take the sacrament, and having to relinquish my calling in YW. I left that night being absolutely convinced that God hated me.
I came home drowning in shame and, after helping my mom do the dishes and telling her I loved her as a sort-of goodbye, I went and wrote the apology letter to my rapist and then swallowed around 150 Aleve, intending to kill myself and go to hell (knowing that there was no way God would ever accept me into heaven, given the sort of girl I was.) After about 1/2 hour, I heard a crystal clear voice in my head saying, "Please don't kill yourself, Mommy." Believing that this was the voice of my future daughter, I ran to the bathroom and made myself throw up the pills.
On a few other occasions, with different bishops, I was questioned in explicit detail about my sexual indiscretions (most of them involving men who pushed past my 'no's, as I tended to freeze if my objections were ignored more than a few times.) I was asked if I had an orgasm, if they had an orgasm, if oral sex was involved, and told that I couldn't be forgiven until I had explained everything in vivid detail. Every time I felt dirty and humiliated. While I did have a couple of respectful bishops who were embarrassed at the idea that I should go into detail, the others made me feel like it was totally normal to have to share with a bishop every last dirty detail and to take their shaming pronouncements as gospel. Ironically, the fact that I was drowning in shame most of my teenage years (largely due to the actions and attitudes of these bishops), made me feel less and less like I even had the right to say 'no.' This shame carried on, well into adulthood.
But my troubles with ecclesiastical abuse did not end there. I had married a return missionary at age 19 (on the suggestion of a bishop who was worried that a couple of occasions of petting would lead to more serious sexual sin). My husband quickly became both emotionally and physically abusive and ultimately raped me at 22 when I told him I was leaving him. After a few months of separation, I dutifully went to my stake president and asked permission to get a divorce. He told me that I should stay and make my marriage work, even though I had told him about the rape and the abuse. I went home that night and fell on my knees and begged God to set me free, but told him that ultimately I would do what he wanted and stay in the abusive marriage, even if it killed me (which at the time, I was fairly sure that it would). The fact that I believed 100% that this untrained clergy-member's pronouncements were the explicit word of God on the matter had everything to do with years of conditioning from my parents and the Church to ignore my own feelings and intuitions and to trust completely (and blindly) everything these men said and did, even if it seemed inappropriate to me.
Having initially left my husband and then reuniting with him on the advice of that stake president put me in a very precarious position. My-ex husband was so angry at my attempt to leave him that things escalated, and he threatened to kill me. In the midst of this volatile and dangerous time, on the advice of my stake president, we went to marriage therapy with a LDS Social services therapist. Trained professionals understand that marriage therapy is not a good idea when one spouse is abusive, since the abuser tends to charm the therapist into not believing the victim. This is exactly what happened to me, as I was gaslighted by my ex-husband, the LDS social services therapist and my stake president, all while fearing for my life and the life of my daughter.
Eventually, maybe a month or so later, after seeing my abusive ex-husband's behavior with his own eyes, the stake president finally believed me and told me to go ahead and get a divorce. But that experience of involuntarilly reuniting with my abusive husband was so terrifying. Now, I have PTSD, partly from enduring extra trauma that I shouldn't have had to endure.
I know that there are children in the Church who are taught by their families to be strong and stand up for themselves. My fear is for the vulnerable boys and girls, like myself, who are very compliant or eager to please, whose parents taught strict obedience to the "Lord's anointed" no matter the cost, or who may already be prone to shame, and are indoctrinated early to treat untrained bishops as if they represent God himself in all things. Shame has no place in the gospel of Christ.
My brother molested me as a child. He went on a mission, supposedly confessed his sins to his leaders, and claims he is a sex addict. He conveniently doesn't remember molesting my sister or I, believes us that it happens, but feels confident that he will never do it again. He has confessed more recently what he has done to his bishop but no leader has reached out to me, as the survivor, to see if I am doing okay or how they can support me.
My daughter was sexually abused by her uncle, an LDS youth. He was barred from taking the sacrament for a time but it is my understanding that he is now a member in full standing, passing the sacrament weekly and will likely go on a mission soon. He has not apologized to my daughter, no leader has reached out to see how they can support her or our family, and we have been counseled by mormon family members to "forgive." We reported this to the police but the judicial system also largely failed us by settling to an attempted count of sexual misconduct when what actually occurred was three counts of sexual misconduct with a minor, They were also able to convince the system to allow his mandatory counseling to be with an LDS therapist.
As a youth I was asked extremely probing an inappropriate questions by bishops, one of whom was excommunicated for infidelity.
When I confessed to sexual activity with my boyfriend my senior year of high school, my bishop cried, disfellowshipped me, refused to give me my young women medallion that I hard worked 6 years for, and told me that I cheated on my future husband and that I needed to feel more bad than I did for what I had done. The same bishop gave a lesson with the chewed gum analogy.
While serving a mission, the Ward Mission Leader of the congregation I served in constantly practiced unrighteous dominion over the sisters, without many people questioning him because it was how things had always been done. Additionally, no one questioned him since he was related to the Area Authority and a former Bishop. Anytime he was challenged, he pulled his 'mantle of authority." Arguing with him was insufferable.
As Ward Mission Leader, he would assign women in the ward to feed the missionaries instead of letting people sign up like traditionally done during the blocks. It didn't matter if they were single women who couldn't feed the Elders- he told them they needed to meet them in public to do so.
In addition to assigning sisters to feed the missionaries, he also assigned them to go on exchanges with us. He even sent out postcard reminders. This was a waste of every resource imaginable, effort, time, printing, postage costs, etc. given the several of these women in were living in care centers. I approached him about this being terrible for report, given some of the sisters were bed ridden or too elderly to drive. He actually thought that it would be "convenient" for us to bring our investigators into these women's homes and test of everyone's faith amidst trials.
Another problem he had was with Baptismal Programs, he felt that they were superfluous and printing them a waste of "sacred ward monies" despite it actually serving a purpose. This came to huge point of conflict when we had a family of seven getting baptized across three generations: grandma, the parents, and four children ranging from ages 9-16. They also had two younger children in the family. I wasn't going to stand for this family not having a momento for their baptism. I asked for him to make an exception given this ward had not seen a baptism in over three years other than children of record. He said no, but I printed the programs myself anyways. Upon bringing them to the baptism to pass out he actually tried to rip the stack out of my hands. He got a few of them and crumpled them up in a ball, yelling. Then instead of beginning the baptism on time he called my Mission President to tattle on my "disregard for authority" and a request to have me transferred immediately.
I’m subbing this on behalf of a friend who can’t express the hurt she has gone through her teenage years.
When she hit her teenage years and older brother would put sunscreen on her but then he would slip his fingers into her vagina. She would tell her parents and this brother would say to them ,”No I didn’t, all I did was put sunscreen on her I didn’t touch her there at all."
This repeatedly happened and she was called a liar and the one that likes to make up stories. Her dad was a bishop at the time.
That was the start of her downward spiral of hating being a woman. Because, in the church having the priesthood is everything. And women mean nothing,
Several years later she had a new dress she wanted to show off to a guy who she had a crush on.
She wore it on one Sunday. He like the dress and said, “You look so pretty, I want to have you!”
He took her to the stage which was dark and then raped her there and he told her to be quiet or people would be hearing. She didn’t know what to do so she complied because that’s all she could do. She pushed him off and said, "Stop, stop, I don’t want this. He said, "I don’t care. I want this. I’m your priesthood leader now."
Afterwards, she went to the bathroom to clean up. Then sat and waited to see the bishop (not her dad).
She reported her rape to the bishop and he said, “You don’t know the meaning of that word! Repent and don’t take the sacrament for a month."
The guy that did this to her got a slap on the back and a wink.
She stopped talking to her parents about difficulties of life and has a huge distrust of all people, especially ones in leadership positions.
She has spent tons of money on different kinds of therapy to help her. To this day she feels the church did her wrong.
She has trouble with building relationships with her family, friends, and others.