A Quiverfull of Definitions

I’ve increasingly seen the media use the word “quiverfull” used to describe the Duggars’ entire subculture, and that’s bugging me, because this use of terminology is neither very accurate nor very helpful. In its purest definition, “quiverfull” means abstaining from using any form of birth control and instead letting God plan your family, and yet I’m increasingly seeing it used as a label for an entire subculture. There are several issues with this. Read more

Mothers are NOT always right

I am not saying mothers have an obligation to always be there for their kids no matter what. Sometimes children grow up to become manipulative or controlling or abusive adults. What I am saying is that mothers should not condition being their for their children on their children always following their advice or on their children declaring them always right. All children, but especially adult children, need space to be their own people, form their own decisions, and yes, make their own mistakes. Read more

We Are Not All Josh Duggar

It is absolutely true that no one is perfect. It is absolutely not true that sometimes being short with your partner is the same as cheating on them, and so on and so forth, and you know what? Trying to get Christian leaders—who should be held to a higher standard to begin with—off the hook for gross offenses by elevating those more mundane offenses of their followers (and by extension their victims) is sick. Read more

Lesbian Duplex: 31: An Open Thread

It’s time for another chatter thread! Read more

Breaking: Leadership of Josh Duggar’s Treatment Center Allegedly Involved in Sex Abuse Coverup

Earlier this week Josh Duggar checked into Reformers Unanimous (RU), a Christian residential addiction treatment program in Rockford, Illinois, run by North Love Baptist Church and co-founded by the church’s authoritarian Independent Fundamentalist Baptist (IFB) pastor, Paul Kingsbury. Over the past twenty-four-hours, I have spoken with numerous individuals involved with or affected by either North Love or Kingsbury. Of primary importance are allegations that Kingsbury is actively supporting an accused sex offender, Richard DeVall, who is serving as a missionary in Bolivia and is sponsored by North Love Baptist Church. If true, this would seem to disqualify Kingsbury from running a recovery program for individuals suffering from porn addiction and sex addiction, but Independent Fundamentalist Baptist churches seem to run by their own rules. Read more

“Terrifying” Josh Duggar Porn Star Allegations Reveal the Depravity of Evangelicals’ Sexual Ethic

Danica’s allegations will be interpreted very differently by secular individuals than by those in Josh’s circles. To secular readers, Danica was a victim and Josh an abuser. To conservative evangelical readers, Danica is a whore who is just as guilty of sin as Josh. Read more

Josh Duggar Sent to Long-Term Treatment Center

Josh’s affair ought to cause the Duggars to question whether their methods for securing sexual satisfaction and building strong relationships actually work. But it won’t. Instead they have shipped him off to another (almost certainly) Christian treatment center. Rather than facing up to the mess they’ve made of things, they are once again shipping their problems off for someone else to fix. And Josh? I very much doubt Josh has gotten straight-talk from anyone outside of the insular culture he has surrounded himself with. Read more

Can You Believe Premarital Sex Is a Sin without Stigmatizing Unwed Motherhood?

There may be some pregnant evangelical teenagers who receive added support from their families and church communities as a result of Ashby’s words. That’s a good thing! But what Ashby is missing is that unless he reevaluates his strong condemnation of premarital sex, he cannot entirely remove the condemnation that comes along with unwed pregnancy, and unwed pregnancy will continue to be a source of shame for evangelical teens. Read more

Josh Duggar and the Pressure of Perfection

Whatever Josh Duggar’s faults—and they are many—I am thinking, today, about what he must be facing from his parents. He has singlehandedly made a lie of their entire belief system. And yes, this isn’t fair. It was grossly unfair of his parents to put the burden of confirming their belief systems on his shoulders. The Duggars, like so many other Christian homeschooling parents, built their brand around the claim that they had discovered the secret to raising perfect godly children. Making this claim placed a huge burden on their children, and especially on Josh as the oldest. Read more

It’s Not Just about Josh Duggar (Some Compiled Readings)

This isn’t just about Josh, and it isn’t just about the Duggars. It’s about an entire culture built upon promises it can’t keep. It’s about communities and leaders that promised young people that if they would only guard their emotions and save physical contact for marriage, their connection with their spouse and the sexual satisfaction they have in marriage will be more deep and meaningful than they can imagine—a promise that, for Josh and Anna like for so many other couples, turned out to be a lie. Read more

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