My Most Popular Posts of 2013

Happy New Year’s Eve! Here’s a round-up of my most popular blog posts of 2013. Perhaps there’s something here that you missed the first time around. Thank you for your readership and participation on the blog this year!

1. I Have a Kid Hangover, But Manage to Write Anyway

This post was popular in part because I unwittingly started a bizarre little Internet controversy. But more important and gratifying was that many fellow bloggers, particularly those who write while also being a primary caregiver of children as I am, saw themselves in this post and shared it with their audiences and colleagues.

2. Message to the Nones: Don’t Reject God Because of Human Suffering or Christian Bullshit

A Texas mom penned a viral blog post explaining why she was raising her child without religion. This post was my response to her arguments, which centered on the fact that life is hard and unfair, and Christians often say stupid things about life being hard and unfair. While I agree about the stupid things, it is unreasonable to reject faith primarily because followers of that faith say stupid things, especially when there are plenty of followers who don’t believe in the stupid things.

3. Progressive Christians Do Care About Abortion: A Response to Rachel Held Evans

Rachel wrote a terrific post outlining the difficult nuances of figuring out what to do and think and believe about abortion, naming where traditional pro-life and traditional pro-choice arguments fell short. I agreed completely with her post, and also wanted to counter her headline’s implication that progressive Christians weren’t caring about abortion (we were/are) and to be honest about some of the pitfalls of dwelling in a “muddled middle” where we try to confront contradictions and paradoxes concerning this issue.

4. No, the Crucifixion is Not About Bloody Child Sacrifice Being Necessary for Forgiveness

This Good Friday post explored alternatives to the “penal substitution” theory of why Jesus’s death on the cross was necessary.

5. Taboo Stories About Disability

In this post, I looked at the types of stories that disability advocates often don’t want to include in conversations around prenatal testing and diagnosis, such as stories about women who choose abortion after a prenatal diagnosis, or stories of parental ambivalence and fear around raising a child with a disability.

6. You Have No Excuse for Parking in a Handicapped Spot Without a Legit Tag. Really, None.

This was a re-post of one of my most popular posts from 2012. The title is self-explanatory, and clearly this is a topic that needs to be regularly revisited because people still don’t get it.

7. Made by God in Rainbow Hues: On Raising a Gender-Nonconforming Child

So-called “rainbow children” were in the news this fall because of a widely publicized memoir by a mom whose son prefers Barbies and glitter to trucks and cargo pants. I have a beloved “rainbow” son too.

8. College Hook-Up Sex is Built on a Troubling Ethic of Achievement at Any Cost

This was a response to a New York Times article arguing that college women engage in casual sex rather than long-term relationships largely because they don’t want to take time away from their studies to invest in relationships. Whether or not this phenomenon is truly a trend or just a collection of uncommon anecdotes, it amplifies our cultural obsession with achievement at any cost, which is concerning for many reasons, not just this one.

9. Do I Love the Bible? It’s Complicated

Progressive Christians pushing back against a more conservative faith often reassure everyone that they “love” the Bible. Do I “love” the Bible? I’m not sure.

10. On Being Unfixable in a World Obsessed with Fixing

Last spring, I went to a naturopath to explore alternative medicine approaches to my chronic arthritis pain, and ended up contemplating what it’s like to have an unfixable condition in a culture that believes there’s always a way to fix everything.

 

 

About Ellen Painter Dollar

Ellen Painter Dollar is a writer focusing on faith, parenting, family, disability, and ethics. She is the author of No Easy Choice: A Story of Disability, Faith, and Parenthood in an Age of Advanced Reproduction (Westminster John Knox, 2012). Visit her web site at http://ellenpainterdollar.com for more on her writing and speaking, and to sign up for a (very) occasional email newsletter.


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