When I was in fifth grade, two of my cousins moved in with us. Our family with 3 kids soon became one of 5 kids and then my youngest brother was born half a year later, so 6. Each one of us, except my baby brother, were in 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 6th grades.
Being kids, some of us formed a club. I had a club with some friends at school (Sunflower Club!) and now I had one with a cousin and a brother. And clubs, being as they are, leave people out. My sister and my other cousin were not in this club.
I’m not sure how long our club lasted- a week? Two? But fairly quickly, my dad organized an FHE and used that time to have us read about the Gadianton Robbers and secret combinations and concluded that he would not allow secret combinations in his house. I felt so ashamed. Here I was doing the same thing the Gadianton Robbers of the Book of Mormon! They’re the BAD GUYS. I felt awful and cried and our club disbanded.
I have kids the ages we were when we had that club. As an adult, I try now to put myself in my parents’ shoes- if my kids formed a secret club and left out one of the siblings, how would I manage it? I look at my kids- and I really can’t imagine calling a special FHE to shame them into not having secret clubs. I’d probably just talk to them about how it makes the person left out feel. I wonder what the disconnect is between my parents and myself: is it generational? is it testimonial? is it that they were converts and I was raised in the Church?
It’s little things like this that makes growing up in the Church a little weird. Did your parents have FHEs solely to teach you lessons? Do you do the same for your kids?