Dear Family, Friends and Former Parishioners

by Bruce Gerencser cross posted from his blog The Life and Times of Bruce GerencserEditor's note: Posting this because sometimes it's a good idea to stop and look back to measure just how far we've come from our old life.What follows is the letter I sent in April 2009 to my family, friends and former parishioners. This letter came after Polly and I attended church for the 2008 Sunday before Thanksgiving. I am republishing it here so it is part of the historical narrative of my life. I know many of you have read this before but I hope you will read it again. As I reread this, I am reminded that what I wrote here is still, almost 6 years later, the motivating factor of my life.  The … [Read more...]

HA & NLQ: What Are We After We Leave?

by Heather Doney cross posted from her blog Becoming WorldlyI have a concern about stuff I’m seeing and not seeing in the survivor community, and I think the time has come to address it, and talk about creating individualized post-fundamentalist roadmaps to ensure you’re not accidentally following new leaders in directions that don’t truly work for you.  So here goes: … [Read more...]

Open Thread: Christmas Aftermath – Maintaining Healthy Emotional Boundaries in Family Dysfunction Post-Evangelicalism

Just wanted to throw open a discussion thread to discuss best ways to deal with the holidays and family after leaving your old faith. Or perhaps you've not left but a family member has. Or your family is filled with dysfunction, turmoil and trauma that has nothing to do with  religion at all. Do you struggle to maintain healthy emotional boundaries in the holidays? Did you have to fend off an over-eager fundamentalist relative wanting to issue some serious 'Come To Jesus' your way as recently described by Bruce Gerencser? … [Read more...]

Growing Up as a Christian (Bible Based) “Cult Child” – A Memoir by Vennie Kocsis

by Vennie Kocsis cross posted from Cindy Kunsman's blog Under Much Grace(Editor's note: Vennie's memoir "Cult Child" is a hard read that is at the same time fascinating. I was unable to put down this book last year when I read it.)(Cindy's remarks) When I met Vennie last year, she wore the blue ombre locks shown in the center picture displayed here, and I like the visual progression that these images display.  The Second Generation Adult (SGA) — a now-adult who grow up in a high demand group doesn't have the opportunity and often lacks the skills to choose their own path.  They (we!) are always adapting and growing to make up for the things that even the first generation members who … [Read more...]

Quoting Quiverfull: Our Big Families Are Better Than Your Small Ones Because?

by Zsuzsanna Anderson from Are They All Yours? - Answering Large Family Objections Part 1 -My, How Neglected and Overworked Your Other Children Are!Editor's note: Happy Thanksgiving! Here's an early serving of turkey, or is it baloney?  Someone is sounding a bit defensive here. For the record, not everyone that does not have large families ships their children off to be raised by others, or ever uses daycare, or whatever fetid family fantasy that Zsu has been taught by her husband. Wasn't it not that long ago that she hinted that she wasn't entirely blissful as the mom of many? … [Read more...]

Answering ‘Preparing To Be A Help Meet’ – When The Ministry Is Exhausting & You’re Getting Discouraged

Another installment of giving better answers to the questions asked at Debi Pearl’s site message board for the book ‘Preparing To Be A Help Meet’. Many young ladies ask questions on all sorts of different subjects brought up by the book. There was just one big problem, many of the answers stray into either the outright bad and emotionally unhealthy to dangerous. Yes, typical Debi Pearl borderline abusive. Here’s what we’re going to be doing here at NLQ. Every week, once or twice a week, I’ll be posting up one of the questions from the message board and ask you, our readers, to answer that poor soul’s question in a way that is logical, rational and the best possible solution, in other words 18 … [Read more...]

Open Thread: Steps You Need to Take to Leave Your Toxic Quiverfull Marriage?

Most everyone here is familiar with the story of Vyckie Garrison and others at NLQ that have had to leave their emotionally abusive and sometimes physically abusive husbands who are Quiverfull. One of the worst stories we've published on the difficulties on leaving was that of our Tess Willoughby. Here's what the final and third time Tess left looked like: … [Read more...]

Three Years In

by Kaleesha Williams cross posted from her blog The Lost (and Found) Mind of Kaleesha Williams(Editor's Note: Kaleesha is talking about her journey three years post-fundamentalism. There is hope of having a full life after leaving toxic faith.)Yesterday marks the third anniversary of the day I laid aside the Bible, having found the answers to the last of my questions about the god within its pages. My conclusion after years of study and devotion? The Bible was written by men who inspired by their ideas of things bigger than themselves, men who were grasping at significance in the majesty of space and time.And that’s okay. We’re all doing that, in a way. It’s part of this journey, … [Read more...]

Finding the Strength to Give Yourself Permission to Leave

by Suzanne Titkemeyer cross posted from her blog Every Breaking WaveI remember the last two years before I walked away from my old church. Every Saturday night or early Sunday morning I would have a nightmare involving church. They always involved church. It might be something like the pastor calling me out for some imagined sin from the pulpit and he and I fighting in the sanctuary. One time I dreamed that my home was filled with an abundance, a crazy wild abundance of things, like opening the bread box to have three fresh loaves leaping out instead of one, or opening the silverware drawer and finding set after set of silver in the drawer. That dream was terrifying because I was … [Read more...]

There’s Something Terribly Wrong With Our ‘Christian Culture’

by Living Liminal cross posted from her blog Living LiminalA few years ago, as a church leader, I experienced bullying and spiritual abuse when one man wanted to 'lord it over' his peers. When the oversight board was called in to help mediate, those men simply took the side of the bully. After experiencing further abuse and an incredible miscarriage of justice, I ended up resigning from leadership and later leaving the institution.Just a few weeks ago, as an office manager, I needed to deal with a situation where one staff member had been trying to 'lord it over' her peer. When the boss was called in to help effect justice, he simply took the side of the bully. After the victim was … [Read more...]


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