Why Betrothal Isn’t ‘The Answer’

by Calulu cross posted from her blog True Love Doesn’t Rape

Last week brought the news that Vaughn Ohlman of True Love Doesn’t Wait betrothed his son Joshua to a young lady up in Michigan named Laura Camp. I wish both of them well, they look like good well-scrubbed Fundie Christians. They’re going to need all the luck and good wishes they can garner considering the explanation of betrothal Josh’s dad gave in the wake of the announcement.

Marriage isn’t easy under the best of circumstances. It’s a struggle sometimes to create a union where each is valued for who they are and both partners fit together in complimentary ways. Their type of betrothal sets up a pretty high potential for failure, or at least, outright misery. Saying that doesn’t give me any pleasure, but after being married to the same wonderful irritating man for nearly thirty years now I think I have at least a clue what needs to happen to have a successful marriage.

Pink’s song “True Love” really sums up my and my husband’s relationship sometimes. ‘I wanna hug you and at the same time I want wrap my hands around your neck’ shows the playful push/pull dynamic that works for us, right down to the freedom to disagree and occasionally not like everything about each other.

Let’s examine Vaughn’s way, shall we?

Let me start by laying out the process whereby people in our era commonly get married. They first start, usually, as ‘friends’. Then they start dating and become ‘boyfriend’ and ‘girlfriend’. Perhaps they ‘go steady’. (We will ignore, here, the world’s stages of when they start sleeping together.) Then, assuming things go well, they get ‘engaged’.

That friendship and ‘boyfriend – girlfriend’ phase is really one of the best ways to get to know each other enough to get a sense if you have common goals and values. If you’re completely yourself and your partner is honestly who they are then this is really a critical time. Whatever red flags you see will let you know what you can expect if you plan a lifetime together. It allows you time to examine what your own deal breakers are, what things you’re willing to overlook or compromise on.

I knew before I married Jim that he was a football fanatic and between Saints games, LSU games and fantasy football scheming that every weekend during the fall and winter revolves around football. I’m not a big football fan so that time is usually when I go shopping with our daughter Laura, hang out with friends, quilt or take my oil paints and easel outside to paint. I knew it going in and it wasn’t a big deal. He knew I had almost no interest in football but was okay with his love of football.

We’re not joined at the hip, our interests are sometimes divergent and that’s okay. Had I gotten engaged after a two hour meeting there’s no way I would have known that and it had the potential to be a big deal. That’s why those dating days and/or hours in courtship are so needed. You have to get to know the real other person.

I want to examine carefully the next two phases; because we don’t think of them as two phases except, occasionally, when there is some legal problem. But there are two distinct stages. First there is the ceremony, which usually involves some critical moments: vows, a preacher saying ‘I now pronounce you’.


Most of us, after those critical moments, consider the couple ‘different’. We call them Mr and Mrs So and So, we call them man and wife, we cheer when he kisses her.


But at the same time, especially if they are virgins, we are all waiting for something else as well. We call it ‘consummation’. It is the time, usually later in the day, when the young couple ‘comes together’ physically.

I don’t think that Von realizes that it doesn’t reference the wedding ceremony much in the Bible. I think it’s more of a Westernized cultural thing than a Biblical thing. It’s symbolic of the promises the two people being bound in legal covenant together are making and a way to make their friends and family part of that symbolism.

We may cheer at the end of the ceremony when the couple seals the ceremony with a kiss but I hope no one in their right mind is thinking about the sexual consummation of the relationship that night. It’s just creepy and wrong, mind-porn, to think about the happy couple gleefully making the hotel bed springs squeak in passion. Most people are either thinking happy thoughts, like how beautiful the bride is or about the commitment these two people have made, or even anticipating having wedding cake, not thinking about sex.

If weddings make you think about all the sex the bride and groom are going to have it’s highly possible you have issues with impurity of the mind.

But there is typically at least some kind of separation between these two times. A time when the young couple is ‘Mr and Mrs’, but they have not had sex. When they are in covenant, but have not consummated that covenant.

Not legally are they Mr and Mrs. No one but a few people with little understanding of the actual commitment of marriage might consider them bound in a marital covenant.

What is betrothal? It is that time. Bound in covenant but not  yet consummated.

Mountains out of bridal molehills, it is essentially the same thing as an engagement. Just because you are calling a pig a puppy doesn’t mean you can’t still have bacon from it.

In Scripture we do not see the whole ‘friends’, ‘dating’, ‘engagement’ thing happening. Even historically a broken ‘engagement’ was called ‘breach of promise’ and could be sued over. In Scripture we see the couple being formed by the agreement of the fathers,[1] and being bound in covenant at that time. They don’t date, or court, they begin by being bound in agreement.

But even betrothed couples in the Bible usually knew each other more than a few hours. The agreement of the fathers was usually more related to political machinations or to protecting the wealth inherent in each family. That’s a very old way of dealing with marrying off a daughter or son. It still happens in some societies or people are strongly encouraged by their parents to date and marry from their own circle. You’ve misunderstood the cultural factors and the era you are using as an absolute.

For all your ‘Biblical’ blathering you’re deliberately misunderstanding the Old Testament. You have no proof of what you claim.

I hope against hope that your son and his soon to be bride are happy and a good match. It’s just too bad they had no say in the matter. Way to start out their lives together with a strong disadvantage.

You need time to know others.

Comments open below

Comments open below

Read everything by Calulu!

Calulu lives near Washington DC , was raised Catholic in South Louisiana before falling in with a bunch of fallen Catholics whom had formed their own part Fundamentalist, part Evangelical church. After fifteen uncomfortable years drinking that Koolaid she left nearly 6 years ago. Her blogs are True Love Doesn’t Rape and  Calulu – Seeking The Light

NLQ Recommended Reading …

Breaking Their Will: Shedding Light on Religious Child Maltreatment‘ by Janet Heimlich

Quivering Daughters‘ by Hillary McFarland

Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement‘ by Kathryn Joyce


About Suzanne Calulu
  • texcee

    My husband and I recently celebrated our 38th wedding anniversary. We were engaged for over two years before that (I won’t say ‘betrothed’), so we’ve actually been a couple for over 40 years. We met in a college class, got to know one another, and became friends before we took it to a romantic relationship. Over the years, our marriage truly has been “for better or worse, in sickness and in health, for richer or poorer.” We haven’t always gotten along and there were a lot of times that I was prepared to divorce him, but the fact that we were FRIENDS and I truly cared about him as a friend kept me from walking out that door. If we had done it Vaughn’s way, I don’t think we would have lasted a year. And, by the way, at our wedding, I did NOT have my father “give me away”. I was a free woman, not an article of property to be handed over from one man to another.

  • http://yllommormon.blogspot.com/ aletha

    I met my husband at a friend’s house, and knew I would marry him. Then he left for 2 years on a Church mission to Portugal. He came back, we re-met at a dance on a Friday night. We went out Saturday, Facebook official Sunday, and were talking marriage by Monday. He proposed that next Saturday, and we were married 3 months later.
    But you know what? It took us a good couple of years (it’s been 3 since the wedding) to get to know each other and figure things out. Yes, we Skyped and emailed during the engagement, but you don’t really get to know somebody until you’re with them all the time. See them at their bad points, their lazy points, their good points. You can’t figure that out in 2 hours.
    So I really hope it works out for them, and that they give eachother the slack they will need to figure out who they are as individuals before they try to become a perfect couple.

  • Saraquill

    Congratulations to your anniversary.

  • persephone

    Yeah, Von really has no understanding of the bible and related history of the Jews, their traditions and customs. He just blathers along, picking a bit from here and a bit from there, and ending up with a bitter, poisonous brew that will destroy anyone who imbibes.

  • A. W. Camp

    I thought it was proper etiquette to leave people’s children out of debate and
    disagreements? Would you please be so kind to take down my daughter’s picture?

  • Independent Thinker

    Blogs are a public forum and the internet is a public place. Your daughter has chosen to air the details of her personal life on the internet including photos of herself via her own blog. Proper internet etiquette is to keep your private life private if you don’t want others to discuss your choices in a public forum. Furthermore, if your daughter is over the age of 18 and feels equipped to become a wife and mother she should also be prepared to face occasional scrutiny. That’s part of what comes with the territory when you choose to take on adult responsibilities. I don’t put the details of my marriage or child on the internet for that very reason.

  • A. W. Camp

    Thank you for the lecture on proper etiquette on the internet, but you apparently “independently thought” your way right past what I said. I’m talking about “disagreement”. I am fully aware that “blogs are public forum”. The blogger in question is not my daughter, but the one who decided it was fair game to go after someone whom they vehemently disagree with by going after children who have nothing to do with this persons personal vendetta. It doesn’t matter how old they are, they are not the ones the blogger in question is arguing with. It would be akin to me calling your kids dumb because I didn’t like your post. Or you smearing the presidents kids because you disagree with him. Leaving kids out of the debate when they themselves have not entered into said debate are “part of what comes with the territory when you choose to take on adult responsibilities”, which apparently you and Calula have not done. Adults can argue without smearing each others kids. I am only asking this site to argue like an adult.

  • Independent Thinker

    The blogger in question is your daughter. Her blog Pen In The Hand discussed and posted a copy of the same betrothal contract posted to Von’s website. Furthermore, there seems to be a blurring of the lines in your posts between adults and children. Minors like Sasha and Milia Obama are under the age of 18. Adults have attained the age of 18. We aren’t discussing the choices of children to the best of my knowledge but feel free to correct me if Laura hasn’t reached her 18th birthday.

  • Madame

    Independent Thinker,

    I think A.W.Camp makes a good point. The post is not about something Laura or Josh wrote, but about Von’s opinions, I think it would be worth considering taking the picture of Laura and Josh down.

  • Madame

    Independent Thinker,

    This post doesn’t link to Laura’s blog, but to Von’s “true love doesn’t wait”.

    Further, though a person is considered legally an adult at 18, parents may still feel the need to step in a protect them. 18 is young.

    What would you do if your 18 year-old daughter got into a situation she didn’t know how to get out of? What if she posted a picture and you saw it published on the internet somewhere else, and discussed in a way you found offensive? Would you not try to get that picture removed from the site? I would!

  • Independent Thinker

    I actually would not try to have the picture removed. If you are ready to be a wife and mother you need to also understand that the world has unintended consequences. Teaching your adult children that you can control how images and information is used on the internet is doing them a disservice. The motto in our home is if you wouldn’t put it on the garage door your don’t put it on the internet. Duplicate information from Von’s website has also been posted to Laura’s.

  • Independent Thinker

    Perhaps the Olhmans and the Camps need to have a discussion about this situation between the two families a reach some sort of middle ground. To me the anger seems misdirected.

  • A. W. Camp

    Perhaps I can make it easier for you “Thinker”. We posted a picture of our happy Daughter on her garage door so everyone that came by could rejoice with us. But a neighbor who doesn’t like what her future father in law has to say came and photocopied the picture right from the garage door, and then posts it on his garage door with a big sign over it that say’s “True love doesn’t rape”. If you would not show up at your neighbor’s front door demanding the picture be taken down, then you are no parent and are not worthy of future responses.

  • Nightshade

    I don’t see where anyone is ‘going after’ your daughter, if anything there is a lot of sympathy/empathy for her here. I do understand your urge to get her picture taken down, but what does she want? If Laura wants it removed I’m pretty sure she’s free to say so, and in that case I think it should be removed out of respect for her wishes.

  • A. W. Camp

    “True love doesn’t rape” (next to) (Picture of my Daughter) = insinuation that my daughter is being raped. I understand that folks here have “sympathy/empathy” for her and you are all entitled to your opinions in this matter. But a line was crossed. My daughter has already made her blog private due to Mrs. Calulu. If I thought that having her chime in here to express her opinion would in anyway sway the site moderator/owner to take down that picture I would ask her to do so. But I am not convinced that that would be of any value.

  • Lolly

    Your house is not a public forum. Vaughn has made it a practice to get all up in everyone’s business publicly on the internet, dictating to everyone how to lead their lives. It is he who has been going on and on about marriage beds, sex and the sole purpose of women and young girls, “rejoicing in breasts” and kind of being disgusting, boorish and vulgar. It’s too late for privacy, Vaughn has removed that option for you.

    You want to leave children out of it? Vaughn has already brought the children in. He can’t seem to stop talking about giving young girls to boys for marriage and baby making the minute secondary sex characteristics appear in girls, and he knows exactly when they’re ready, so he must be looking. You want to get your daughter’s life wrapped up with this guy, fine, but don’t expect things to be “sweet” on the Internet.

    Good luck to your daughter.

  • Nightshade

    ‘We posted a picture of our happy Daughter on her garage door…’ Except you didn’t. Your garage door is, I assume, on your private property so coming and photocopying without your permission would be trespassing. A picture posted online for anyone with a computer to see isn’t private. Privacy online is an admirable goal, but mostly illusion. And since your daughter is now betrothed, another man’s wife with all the responsibilities that places on him, why is her husband not calling for removal of the picture?

  • Nightshade

    You’re assuming that people will think less of your daughter if they believe this form of marriage is open to rape. I don’t think that’s the case here, too many folks posting here have been there, done that, had their free will ignored and erased, although perhaps not to the same extent. I suspect that your daughter’s expressed desire to have the picture removed would be at least seriously considered, not dismissed out of hand, and I think worth a try, if she wants it taken down. Not you, not her future father in law, but HER desire.

  • A. W. Camp

    Nightshade, I was using the illustration that “independant thinker” used. Trying to get through to his “independant thought”. He compared the two, I was following suit to help him/her understand in the illustration that he apparently could grasp. It was pretty obvious “child talk” to Independant Thinker. I would love to engage you in further topics such as you have brought up, but I will not stoop to do so until this site removes my daughters picture.

  • A. W. Camp

    Lolly, your name is fitting. Best of luck to you in life.

  • A. W. Camp

    Perhaps that is my assumption. And perhaps I’m wrong. But perhaps I am not. Do you have any say as to whether or not this picture comes down? Are you a moderator? If so, I will be happy to ask Laura to address you personally. But how would you know I’m not ordering her to do it against her will? That’s your fear isn’t it? So what does it matter?

  • A. W. Camp

    Madame, I understand that you probably have some disagreements with me as you probably do with Von. But I appreciate the fact that you can agree on this. It makes for much more pleasant discourse between those who disagree.
    Thank you.

  • Independent Thinker

    Again, your anger is misdirected. The mature adult thing to do would be to discuss the issue with your daughter’s father in law to be. I am glad your daughter now sees the merits of privacy settings on the internet thus changing her blog accessibility. It is a step in the right direction.

  • A. W. Camp

    Thank you for all the stimulating conversation. But I have made my plea with the owner of the “True love doesn’t rape” blog, and with this site (althought I don’t know how to contact the site other than the comments). If we can’t be adult enough to keep our kids pictures out of the discussions then obviously you show yourselves unworthy of further discussion. All the best to you, and thank you to Madame who advocated for me.

  • Nightshade

    No, I’m no moderator, and wouldn’t want to be! *shudder* That’s why I use the words I think, believe, suspect, etc…I’m just going on the premise generally accepted here that a woman is entitled to free will and to make her own choices, therefore I believe her wishes would be considered. Yes, I’d be concerned that she could make the request under pressure from others, you or her future father-in-law, I won’t lie to you and deny that, but I think her expressed wish would have to be taken at face value in the absence of evidence of coercion…at least that’s how I would take it, and I don’t think I’m alone in that regard.

  • Lolly

    Either Laura is 18 or over, in which case she is an adult making her own decisions for her own reasons and living with the consequences like the rest of humanity, or she is a child, a “kid”. In which case, if she is a child being married off, there could be legitimate issues there. But, sorry, she cannot be both.

    That being said, the picture doesn’t need to be there at all. The issue is Vaughn, Laura doesn’t need to get caught in the crossfire, that’s not fair to her, she has done nothing to deserve this kind of unhappiness. And I wish her lots of happiness.

  • Madame

    Why do you think the anger is misdirected? A.W Camper has a problem with his *or her* daughter’s picture on this blog. There has been nothig said for or against our discussion of Von’s words or their choice to betroth their children.

  • Madame

    Well said, A.W. Camp!

  • Madame

    Seriously. I think all that Mr or Mrs. Camp wants is to have his or her daughter’s picture removed from a site that is linking her image to rape.

  • Independent Thinker

    There are no pictures of kids just adults. What is confusing about that?

  • Independent Thinker

    Apparently Ms. Camp doesn’t understand that her own daughter posted that picture on the internet. Again, the internet is a public forum. Once the picture was duplicated she seems to be upset. Are people who have pictures of themselves put in the newspaper supposed to throw a tantrum when a group of children decides to take that same newspaper and use it to create a piñata? Once the picture is made available to the public you can not control the context in which it is used. Positive or negative. Intimate photos belong on the fireplace mantel not on the net.

  • Independent Thinker

    Pleasant discourse refrains from personal insults. Take note.

  • Madame

    Your welcome.

  • http://biblicalpersonhood.wordpress.com/ Retha Faurie

    I am utterly convinced that, if the site owner believe it is Laura’s wishes and not you asking it, she will. On this site, we are big on letting people make their own decisions, and letting women know they are capable of fighting their own battles.
    So, if Laura is indeed not happy with it, she can easily get it removed.
    And I assure you that we are not the type that will think less of your daughter if we think she is raped. We will only think less of the rapist. (And in this case, if we think she is raped, the pimps that set up the rape situation.)

  • Madame

    Yes, she posted that picture on a blog that we were unaware of until someone went digging on Facebook and found Von’s link to it. If Laura were one of those annoying whippersnapperettes who spends her days lecturing older women (I’ve seen that sort of blog), then I can see how you could accuse her of looking for trouble and say that she had it coming. All she did was post a picture of herself and her betrothed and link to the announcement. She shouldn’t be raked over the coals for doing that, and her desire to have her image removed from this discussion should be respected.

    I’m finding it hard to believe how women (I assume you are a woman, forgive me if you aren’t!) who claim to be all about women’s rights to being heard and women’s rights to choice and protection from abuse, would not see that using a picture of a young woman agaisnt her will is a violation of her right to this protection. We are, in a sense, abusing Laura.

    Please, let’s treat others the way we would like to be treated.

  • Independent Thinker

    Ms. Camp clearly deserves an F grade on her parenting report card on the topic of internet safety. We used the Safe Side Internet Safety DVD produced by John Walsh in our own home to prepare our child for the do’s and don’ts of the internet. This isn’t a women’s rights issue if anything it’s a parenting issue that Ms. Camp has failed to address with her own daughter. I suggest that Ms. Camp obtain a copy and share it with her entire family. She and her daughter clearly don’t understand that the internet is not a private place.

  • alfaretta

    I somewhat sympathize with Mrs. Camp, but she has evidently failed to
    realize that Laura has volunteered to be a poster child for her future
    father-in-law’s very public campaign (or, Mr. and Mrs. Camp have volunteered her). As such, she will no longer be a private person as long as she is involved with the Ohlmans. If that disturbs Mrs. Camp, perhaps she should reconsider her apparent approval of her daughter’s betrothal.

  • Suzanne Harper Titkemeyer

    A W Camp, Let’s be truthful here, shall we? First of all there’s no watermark on the photo or any trademark notice anywhere on your daughter’s site, so what I did (moderator here and owner of True Love Doesn’t Rape) was not illegal. Tacky and inconsiderate? Maybe. But I found the thing by following Von’s postings leading right to your daughter’s blog. Blame it on Von.

    As the daughter in law of Von your daughter Laura is going to have to get used to being discussed online. Feel very certain that Laura will be featuring in some of Von’s posts about the greatness of young marriage, sex and betrothal. The man has a very warped focus on sex that is pretty disgusting. Just the wording of the betrothal is very disrespectful of your daughter, it’s no ones business if she has or doesn’t have sex during her marriage. Why is Von even bringing that up?

    I’m not even going to mention how disturbing I find it that you agreed to all of that blathering in the betrothal contract or gave your daughter no choice by betrothing her to someone she’d know two full hours. The story of the coffee cups on Laura’s blog is pretty sad.

    But I might still have taken down the photo if you hadn’t have posted a not very nice, very demanding comment on my blog. Now? Might just take a word of knowledge from the Almighty before that happens.

    Why doesn’t Laura ask me herself? Von has my email address and knows how to reach me.

    Who would be dumb enough to think just because I’m talking about betrothal and have that photo up that your daughter is going to be raped?

  • NeaDods

    This! A.W. Camp has every right to ask that a family member’s photo be removed, in my opinion. But it’s Ohlman who has been posting explicitly about the soon-to-be sex life of the couple and how Laura is already no longer a Camp and otherwise loudly advertising very personal things about her, and he’s only going to get worse as the wedding approaches – especially if he expects Laura to live in *his* house and not set up a new one with her new husband. V’s continuing obsession with sex and pregnancy can only mean that he’s going to be posting every personal detail in that direction he can find for the woman he already considers “his.”

  • A. W. Camp

    I hope everyone can see at this point what the consistent answer is. “I hate Von, so we hate your daughter as well and fully intend to use her to bash Von everytime we see her mentioned.” Thanks, but I would not ask Laura to defile herself by communicating with you. Who would think that a young girl would post a picture on her blog for loved ones to see and have some malicious woman repost it, and then threaten to do so again in the future. You are the reason the internet is not safe. In case anyone is wondering, here is the “not so nice” comment I left on the “True love doesn’t rape” blog after she posted a picture of my daughter maliciously.

    “True love doesn’t take pictures of other peoples children, from of other peoples children’s blogs, and post them on a website insinuating “Rape”, no matter how much you disagree with the other people. True love would not try to embroil a newlywed couple to be in controversy. True “wishing them both well” would not seek to smear them. Say what you will, but please take down the picture that she posted for loved ones to see. You can rejoice that you have made my little girl upset. Good for you. Now please take her picture down.”
    I reiterate it now. But as you have responded with a loud, “no” I guess I’ll say goodbye. Your character is not admirable. Enjoy your life of making fun of happy kids. I assure you, mine will never have another public picture posted of them, lest vile people such as yourself exploit them. You should be ashamed of yourself. Must be a miserable life.

  • http://biblicalpersonhood.wordpress.com/ Retha Faurie

    “I would not ask her to defile herself by communicating with you”

    “You can rejoice that you have made my little girl upset.”
    I am confused. Is she herself upset, and if so, why can she not ask for it to be taken down? I mean, if she is old enough to marry, is she not old enough to contact a blogger without you asking her to?
    And is she “a little girl”, or a woman old enough to consent to marriage?

  • Lolly

    So, she is a child. That is truly, truly disturbing. Basically you’re handing your little girl over to a virtual stranger. There is something else going on here with you then. You’re digging a deeper hole, admitting that you’re marrying off a little girl, a girl who is too young to make her own decisions, to the first guy who will have her. A sweet looking little girl who most likely looks so happy in her picture because for once she has her parents’ full attention and approval. It’s tragic. You’re exceptionally rude and obnoxious and write what seems to be weird, cryptic, encoded Christian nonsense, so there’s no reason to believe it’s anything other than a tragedy that you couldn’t keep confined inside the Christian bubble.

    Laura and Von are already linked, her name is on his website and he will continue to plaster her name and her intimate and her personal details all over his website, typing it all out with one hand, I’d wager, but as long as it furthers yours and his agenda, it’s OK with you. Talk about exploitation. But the only problem you have is a with her picture used on another website to illustrate their “good” and “well scrubbed” appearance.

  • Lolly

    I don’t think AW wants Laura to contact anyone on the outside about this for various reasons. “Defiling” is a handy dandy Christian excuse that translates to “Laura might get the idea that maybe this ain’t such a deal after all, maybe her parents don’t know everything, why are they making her move in with this creepy father in law?” Too dangerous for AW to take that chance with Laura. Little girls must be kept in line, you know.

  • Nightshade

    I hate to say this, I was trying to give AW the benefit of any doubt that exists-as I try to do with all people I encounter-but I have to agree. There would be no need to ‘ask’ her to do anything, or even suggest a course of action, merely ask her ‘Do you know your picture is on this site?’ and allow her to decide how to respond, or if she perhaps would prefer to ignore it entirely. Is she even aware that her picture has been reposted? I do think she has the right to know and make her own decision…sorry, I forgot for a moment. This is a woman who according to the whole betrothal idea is incapable/not permitted to exercise free will.

  • http://biblicalpersonhood.wordpress.com/ Retha Faurie

    I don’t like to assign motives to people, but I suspect your right. Methinks, this never upset Laura:
    Laura have, I suspect, never seen this blog entry, and her mummy does not want her to see it. That would
    explain why her mother cannot let her contact us and politely ask if we would remove it, even though she
    know that is way more likely to work than: “You are a meanie and got no business speaking of other people’s children.”

    “Defiled” by speaking to Suzanne? Jesus was not defiled by speaking to … well, Jesus spoke to all
    types from pharisees to tax collecters to fishermen.

  • Mel

    That article is thoroughly weird in seems to ignore the purpose and history of most of the verses quoted. The Book of Hosea is about how God reaches out to Israel when the people turn from him. It’s a beautiful book, but in no way is a guideline on how to conduct relationships. Joseph was betrothed to Mary and technically broke all sorts of Biblical laws by not divorcing her when she turned up pregnant.

    I guess I was betrothed under these guideline from the time my husband and I exchanged our vows until we consummated our union (I hope I never have to write those words again.) My church, along with all mainline religions I know of, view marriage as legal from the exchange of vows. You can get the marriage annulled for lack of consummation, but seriously, who else worries about this? I was more randomly freaked out for the short time between when we exchanged our vows and signed the legal papers.

  • Madame

    I find this reply disturbing and disappointing. The direction this thread has taken is disgusting.

    All I see now is personal attacks on A.W. Camp and a stubborn defense of your “right” to use any picture anyone puts up on their blog. Just turn the tables for one minute and imagine it was your daughter’s engagement picture, and that Von picked it up and used it to talk about “practice for divorce” or another such charming topic. How would you like that? It’s easy to say “I’d have her deal with it herself and tell her she shouldn’t be getting married if she can’t deal with that sort of stuff”. Until it happens to your family. We all protect our children when we think they need to be protected. That is what parents do. Period.

    A.W’s comment wasn’t distasteful. She just factually pointed out what true love doesn’t do, and she feels you did by using her daughter’s picture. How hard is it to take the picture down? She wasn’t even asking for an apology! And yes, she has the right to be angry.

    I’m disappointed. I thought you were above that.

    Lastly, do you really think A.W.Camp is going to send her daughter over here to deal with a bunch of hostile people who only seem interested in swaying her against what she has been brought up to believe is right?

    As much as I disagree with this form of betrothal, I don’t think NLQ is the gentle, loving place to send an 18 year-old, vulnerable, innocent woman to politely ask that her privacy be respected.

  • Madame

    After the warm welcome A.W received, I am not surprised she would rather keep her daughter away from here.

  • Lolly

    Well, AW thinks she came across as “nice”, but from the initial post on the other blog, to the first posts here, his/her tone is entirely hostile and passive aggressive, attributing the worst of motives to this blog and True Love Never Rapes from the get go, leaving no room for conversation, much less a warm welcome.

    It seems more like he or she was fixing to go all publicly Christian shamey instead of seeking to make a case in private. Which is what a mature adult, concerned about privacy, and who knows how to deal with people would have done. A mature adult who’s only goal theoretically is to get her daughter’s picture off a website. But if you don’t want hostile, don’t go about setting up a hostile environment, especially on a site that you know not only disagrees with, but is disgusted and appalled by the situation you’re putting your daughter into. Right away, you lose credibility, you’ve got a handicap. So what does AW do? Come in with guns blazing, expecting what, exactly. If you want to get something done in that situation, there are much better ways to go about it. There are ways to say what she said that encourage conversation, not shut it down, and AW chose from the outset not to go down that road. I made a case yesterday for the picture to come down, because Laura did not deserve this, but I think the AW’s intent was not to get her daughter’s picture down, but to stir up hostility so she could point out how hostile people are towards their beautiful daughter and away from thinking about the possibility that she is being married off against her will to a guy whose father is grotesquely contemplating her consummating her marriage and writes about it on the internet.

    So for that reason too, once again, I’ll make the case that I think the picture should come down. It’s distracting from the real issues.

  • texcee

    I think the courteous thing to do is to take down the photo and everyone back off and take a deep breath. A bit less snark all around would help, too. Everyone has their hackles up and it’s not helping resolve the matter. Just IMHO.

  • Suzanne Harper Titkemeyer

    If I had been asked in a halfway polite way I would have removed it immediately but when someone shows up and starts off in an accusatory tone I am very unlikely to help them out. You should see what shows up in the email box for the site!

  • Suzanne Harper Titkemeyer

    Why did you not just simply say, please take down my daughter’s photo because it’s disturbing her? That would have done it. But if you show up on my personal blog like you did almost guarantees you will not be taken seriously?

    BTW I did take down the photo because frankly I’m sick of this shit. It ends here.

  • texcee

    I totally believe you. I just sometimes find that “A soft answer turneth away wrath” is the best way to go. But there was indeed a good bit of hostility on the part of AW Camp, so I don’t blame you for your response.