Submission and Prison Cells: Part 1

cells

by Melissa Permission To LiveAlmost five years ago, I was a devout conservative Christian. I had been married over two years, had a toddler Ms Action running around and a baby Ms Drama due in a few months. I loved my spouse beyond what I had ever thought love was when we first got married, and I still dutifully tried to keep the house immaculate and dinner on the table by the time he walked in the door. I read lots of books on marriage and childrearing, and I gave some of them away too. I remember in particular giving away copies of “To Train up a Child” and “Be Fruitful and Multiply”. I did my best to live up to the ideas I found in the Bible, the Christian books and magazines I read, an … [Read more...]

Happily Abused

Can you say, "Stockholm Syndrome'?

Trigger warning: Christian woman's advice to abused wives reads like a handbook for ascetic self-mortification. How to Use a Woman's Faith & Trust to Make Her a Willing Accomplice to Her Own Abuseby Vyckie GarrisonAfter stumbling across yet another piece of alarmingly dangerous advice for abused women of faith titled, Surviving Emotional Abuse Six Steps by Christian author, Darcy Ingraham, I am wishing I had more middle fingers with which to express my extreme irritation. Ack!I will try to calm down long enough to use my words rather than profane gestures to talk about spiritual abuse.To begin with the author assumes that only those husbands who abandon their faith … [Read more...]

Who Was That Masked Man? Part 7

by CaluluAfter the incident with the pregnant daughter of a friend we had another reprieve from Tom and Tina. We'd see them at church but they'd stopped coming to the bible study group. I'd heard that they were both going through this other ministry's counseling. The other ministry sounded sort of like Scientology in that you have to confess all your deepest darkest sins, area by area each week to the counseling team and then the team would lead you in repentance, prayer and forgiveness. It kept the Smiths out of our hair for about a year with the exception of about every other month one of the Smiths would corner me and demand we all become friends again.No chance of that. Even our … [Read more...]

Who Was That Masked Man? Part 6

by CaluluWhen we last left the Smiths they had reconciled and were determined to make everyone be best friends forever again. Nothing doing.Things ratchet up a few new levels of tension. 9/11 happens. I'm sitting in front of the television having coffee and folding clothes when CNN shows the coverage of the first tower getting hit and I'm still watching when the second plane hits the other one of the twin towers of the World Trade Center. By the time the plane hits the Pentagon and there are rumors on television of another plane being spotted on the way to Capital Hill where my husband works I was pretty wrung up. My phone kept ringing off the hook from friends and relatives wanting … [Read more...]

Millipede: Part 6

patriarch

by MillipedeI hated the the underlying spirit which had crept into our marriage; it was a peevish, disapproving air that my husband had taken on. In our "heathen" days my husband had a happy go lucky air. This was endearing and made up for the fact that he could be irresponsible.Under Christian patriarchy this changed. Not only was he now "head of the household", but he was responsible for making sure that we lived a "Godly life". This permeated every bit of our life as we didn't want to be "Sunday Only" Christians; God was not someone that we turned our back on for the other six days of the week.This affected how I dressed, what we ate, what entertainment we watched or listened … [Read more...]

Who Was That Masked Man? Part 5

by CaluluSo when we left off Tina was still believing that Tom was coming home. We were having nothing to do with the Smiths and Tom doesn't come home.What he does do is go to my husband and ask him to talk to me about working a few mornings a week at his office to transfer all his paper documents into digital on his new computer system. I don't want to do it but it's a little slow that spring in my job so I grit my teeth, bite my tongue and start going into his office for four hours every morning. I know this is a mistake but hey, there's not much going on to prevent me and Tom isn't going to be there at the same time as me, win-win. I'm such a sap. Plus I'd quit working at the … [Read more...]

Millipede: Part 5

headless

by Millipede Peevish men, wives who watched every word and worse they really embraced the submission beliefs. The wives would gripe very rarely about their husbands and the work and if they did they were sure to say that they weren't in disagreement with the system, ,merely letting off a little steam.The women were just as much true believers. This isn't as I first thought/hoped in that Patriarchy can be a humane system for women. Instead I realized that there will always be those who for varying reasons, become ardent followers of movements which harm them. There are women who will accept or even come to love degradation if it comes approval and "love". Look at people in … [Read more...]

Millipede: Part 4

control

by MillipedeAlthough the "dress code" was the most glaring example of our changing mindset.There were other changes which were just as bad if not worse in the long run.My husband started to implement "order in the home". Although not as extreme as the other men, he considered himself the head of the household. Sure, I could argue, but if he stuck to his guns on something, I was expected to follow. I could be stubborn, but there were plenty of things that I gave way. Dressing in skirts out in public wasn't the only one. Staying at home, I let him control the finances. Sure, I could give advice, nag and so on, but in the end, he decided all things. A lot of things happened that in … [Read more...]

Who Was That Masked Man? Part 3

by CaluluWhen we last left everyone Tom was in and out of his home with Tina. Tina was determined to wait out his infidelity and we were trying to rally around Tina since she was disabled and alone. Things are about to get beyond strange, with the ripples affecting a number of families at church.During this super awkward time frame Hubby and I start getting regular visits from Alice, Sam and their six kids. The visits go like this. We get a call or they just show up at dinner time and announce that they have no food at the house and no money.The visits created stress because obviously we couldn't be around or have over the Smiths at the same time. So it felt like the worlds … [Read more...]

Who Was That Masked Man: Part 2

anger

by CaluluWhen we last left off Tom was in love with another woman and defiant to criticism. Says he has a right to be happy, he feels no sorrow for the affair and he's not going to stop. God approves, according to Tom even though the Bible clearly states otherwise. I responded by doing the bad thing, doing what any good fundigelical pearl clutcher feels obligated to do, I go to our mutual Pastor. Now Pastor already knows and says he is going to 'deal' with the feckless frolicking fornicators. He goes to both to confront them and gets mixed responses, Alice still swears there was no actual sex going on and tells the Pastor this is no ones business.Tom tells Pastor pretty much the same … [Read more...]


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