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June 7, 2012
The Real Issue
When Relief Society Runs Late -- Every Week
by Cyndie Swindlehurst

Question:

As soon as the clock strikes 4 p.m., I stand up and leave Relief Society. I realize this is rude, but I think it's rude of the teacher to continue past her time. I like to make a point. Am I wrong for doing this, or can I continue to take a stand?

Answer:

Do you flounce? Harrumph? Step on people's toes? Slam the door?

If you disrupt the lesson, you are being rude. If you slip out quietly, you are not being rude.

That's a technical point, however. I think you're actually wrong to ascribe rudeness to the teacher. Maybe she's just not as good as you are at time management. Even if she were being deliberately rude, it would be rude of you to point it out or retaliate. And you might ask yourself if all of this early-leaving has been effective. Has any teacher changed her ways?

The easiest solution here is for you to stop being offended and stay put.

Well, there is one other option. But only if you have a time-sensitive responsibility after church. In that case, you could tell the Relief Society president that although you hate to be rude to the teacher, you really must be on time to collect you little ones from Primary or drive the missionaries to their appointment or get to choir practice or whatever you have to do.

But if you have no good excuse for leaving promptly at 4, then I'm afraid you're stuck with my original advice. If you simply must express some emotion as you sit there, try looking increasingly concerned with every minute that passes after 3:55.


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