Selfish living endangers marriages

Littering, sleeping in church, sloppy behavior and pornography all contribute to the demise of marriages both within and outside the Mormon church, said a marriage expert at BYU Education Week Tuesday.

Douglas E. Brinley, professor emeritus of church history and doctrine, listed more than 100 ways people exhibit selfishness, the kinds of behaviors that "sound trivial but become quite vexing," Brinley said.

The list included not wanting to have children, monopolizing the television remote, leaving the toilet seat up, talking in movies, going without speaking, holding a grudge, not accepting church callings, being tight-fisted with money, not participating in intimacy in older years, becoming defensive when confronted, cutting across the lawn, criticizing, even refusing to be a home teacher or visiting teacher.

Brinley said he's heard nearly every one of his examples as a complaint from a couple in trouble.

He quoted the views of several prophets and said the very acceptance of divorce as a cure for marital stress is a serious sin of this generation.

"Every divorce is the result of selfishness on the part of one or the other or both spouses," he said.

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