The Marriage Benefits of Leaving Fundamentalism

by LatebloomerIf I had stayed within the constraints of fundamentalism and Christian Patriarchy, my husband and I would absolutely not be happily married today. Our relationship from the very beginning consisted of many departures from the teachings I grew up with. Each of those departures furthered the development, health, and mutual happiness of our relationship.The first departure: As a single woman, I moved out of my parents' home to get a college education. What is a completely ordinary step for many North American women was a desperate and terrifying leap for me. My family's homeschooling church, led by Reb Bradley, promoted a very restrictive view of gender roles along with a … [Read more...]

Daughter of the Patriarchy: Ripping the Moorings Part 2

by SierraMy mother is stubborn.My father jokes that it’s the Polish in her (and me) that makes us clutch ideas so hard they fuse with our fingers and become permanent fists of stony resolve. This tenacity kept my mother with my father, kept her in church despite the disapproval of other women, kept her homeschooling me against everyone’s wishes and kept her focused with faith on the promise of the future. My mother is the kind of woman who will make this world a better place or die trying, and then come back and haunt the place until the job is done. She is physiologically incapable of giving up.The problem is, she’s not invincible.As I was settling into college life and tryin … [Read more...]

Baptist Taliban: Part 4

by Cindy FosterPARTY TIMEIt was the end of the 1900’s. There was much uncertainty in the air everywhere, about what the next millennium would bring. Would our computer-dependent world come to a screeching halt? Would there be a shortage of food, water and electricity? Should we be stockpiling goods in preparation?If the ‘air’ everywhere else was unsettling, it was much more so in the church. If tension was butter, you could cut it with a knife. The young people were troubled, parents were hyper-alert, Paul and I felt like we were walking a perpetual tight-rope and The Preacher was venting rage through every sermon at our expense. With that kind of a pressure-cooker clima … [Read more...]

Snipped! Part 6: The Fun Little Church

by Incongruous CircumspectionBill Gothard’s weekly marriage class was run by Pastor John Hartzell and his young protégé, Chuck Raichert in a little Independent Fundamental Baptist Church in Bloomington, Minnesota. Normandale Baptist was the name. The seminar was called Rebuilder’s and was all about loving Jesus Christ so much that your husband or wife simply rushed back into your arms and lived happily ever after. The only problem, it never worked that way. It merely created religious zombies with strict principles.Mama was one of these zombies. She would have hours of “conversation” with my dad over the phone. She never let him speak. You knew when he tried by the rise in the … [Read more...]

Justice is No Lady: Chapter 11: Jack, the One I Lost

by Tess WilloughbyWhen Jack was just a baby, Nate had rejected Jack’s personality, and had set out to beat and berate it out of him. When Jack reached middle school age, or perhaps a little bit before, the seeds that his father had planted suddenly sprouted. Jack began to come unraveled. “Something is wrong with me,” he said. “I’m messed up.”Jack began to abuse his little sisters. His grades slipped. He had been my comedian, making jokes about everything all day. Now, he moped. He refused to play sports. He would not bathe.If anyone touched Jack, even to restrain him or remove dangerous objects from his hands, Nate took Jack to magistrates to swear out warrants that Jack was being … [Read more...]

Snipped! Part 5 Theoretical Visitation

by Incongruous CircumspectionFor those of my readers keeping track, you might remember that I have six siblings. Seven kids and one father with visitation rights. My mother had won full custody and my father was given every other weekend with his kids and four weeks in the summer. Again, there were seven of us. This meant that he had to split us up in sets of two and three so we could fit into his apartment. Thus, I ended up going with him about every six weeks – in theory.My mother played every game in the book to keep us away from our dad. He would call Friday night to tell her who he wanted to pick up the next morning and she would go through a long laundry list of excuses a … [Read more...]

Unwrapping the Onion: Part 3: A Growing Up Story

by Permission to LiveBefore I go any further I just want to make it clear that my spouse has participated in the writing and editing of this series, and has given their full support and approval of it's publication.This post is part of a series of nine posts. Please click here to start with the series Introduction.Over the next number of months it seemed that we talked about transgender questions and issues constantly. My spouse had been unable to talk about this for so long and now it was like a floodgate had opened. He told me about how he had always felt different, that even as a small child he wished he could play with some of the girls’ toys and wondered why he couldn’t have … [Read more...]

Quiverfull and the Introvert: Where Do You Get Your Energy?

by Barbie Getzreal"Where do you get your energy?!"This is a question which is frequently asked of Quiverfull moms by amazed and admiring onlookers who cannot imagine being able to keep up with the exponential demands of "biblical womanhood" including: perpetual pregnancy, child-bearing, adopting sibling groups, breastfeeding, baby wearing, chronic sleep deprivation, raising half a dozen or more closely-spaced, "stair-step" children, homeschooling - year round through chronic illness, child-training, character training, tomato-staking, discipling children, homemaking, penny-pinching, organic gardening, baking from scratch, once-a-month cooking, homesteading, sewing modest clothing, s … [Read more...]

A Tomboy in Christian Patriarchy

by LatebloomerI was not the type of daughter that my mother wanted. I was a tomboy.My hair was very short and I preferred blue clothes. I wanted to run faster and climb higher than anyone. I wasn't afraid of slimy frogs and worms, and I could kill a spider without batting an eye. I looked with confusion and disdain at the passive little girls with their hair-bows, sitting and talking about clothes and boys. If I had known the term "badass" back then, I would have applied it to myself with pride.When I was young, my mom was more tolerant of this. After all, in the early days, there were mostly boys in my age group in our small homeschooling community. So I was free to run wild … [Read more...]

"Children Are a Blessing" video – Quiverfull believers explain Quiverfull

For those readers who are interested in hearing an explanation of the Quiverfull philosophy and lifestyle, "Children Are a Blessing" by Moore Family Films is available free online through April 30th.Children are a Blessing from Moore Family Films on Vimeo.Children are a Blessing from Moore Family Films on Vimeo.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<A HREF="h … [Read more...]


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