‘Mormon Land’: Body image and more — how temple garments affect LDS women spiritually, physically, socially

Researcher shares what members and ex-members like and dislike about wearing this religious underclothing.

(Screenshot) The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released this photo of women's temple garments, which faithful members wear beneath their clothes.

Many faiths feature clothing they consider part of their religious identity or obligation. Muslim women don headscarves. Jewish men wear yarmulkes. Sikh men cover their hair with turbans. Married Hindu couples sport sacred threads. These are all visible symbols of commitment.

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have adopted religious clothing known as “temple garments” to remind them of covenants they have made. But they are worn under street clothes — and are meant to be invisible to others.

This spring, Larissa Kindred, a former Latter-day Saint and recent graduate of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, created an online “snowball survey” to reach out to Latter-day Saint women about what they like — and dislike — about wearing garments.

On this week’s show, Kindred discusses her research, the responses and conclusions. She also focuses on the challenges Latter-day Saint women face spiritually, physically, emotionally and socially in wearing the garments — and how the apparel affects their body image.

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