Daughter of the Patriarchy: Surveillance

by SierraThick summer haze blended with the spirals of smoke belching from the backyard grill. A teenage girl in a sepia-colored seventies outfit poked at the flames with a stoic face, silently urging them to gulp up more pages from the notebooks she fed them, one after another. The fire surged with joy and then abated, leaving only charred fragments sinking into dust or drifting lazily into the air. The  grill was stuffed, but not for long. Soon the makeshift altar had reduced its sacrifices to embers. The girl sighed with relief, though the anger blazing in her chest had not subsided.Her mother had read her diaries. They had to be burned. Her most private thoughts unmercifully exposed, … [Read more...]

Family Man, Family Leader: Created to be His Help Meet – Help I’ve Created a Monster. Part 2 The Balance Shifts

by LivingForEternityWe had two children nineteen months apart. We wanted a larger family than just two. At that time we had never heard of patriarchy. We just loved kids, and we loved making them. However, after that I did not have any more. Of course I was disappointed, but we were alright with that at the time. As they approached school age I began to fret. I loved being with my kids and I did not want to send them away. I had met a family one time that educated their children at home. I was still working part time, but we decided that I would stay home with the children and teach them myself.If that is all that I would have done it would have been great, but of course I had to join a … [Read more...]

Justice is No Lady: Chapter 7 ~ Spiritual Adultery

Warning: This story series contains descriptions of physical abuse.by Tess WilloughbyNate says what happened from Christmas of 1999 through summer of 2000 was this: I condoned his affair with Angel.I guess Nate should know, because “condone” is a legal term and he’s a lawyer.  That’s not the way I remember it. I remember two things: being very ill and being very angry. After the lingeré bonfire, Nate kept his sickly, irate wife very busy listening to his sermons on forgiveness, doing unpaid paralegal work (he set up his new firm at home with the clients stolen from his former boss), getting through Christmas on a shoestring, overhauling our finances, and going to marriage counseling wi … [Read more...]

Justice is No Lady: Chapter 6 ~ In Which Nate Takes Up Racquetball

Warning: This story series contains descriptions of physical abuse.by Tess WilloughbyI tried to conceal my misery, fatigue, and desperation from the members of our new church. We had not been there very long when people began to notice how spaced-out and jumpy Tess Willoughby was. Our pastor, Mike, and our assistant pastor, Randy, both expressed concern about me.I was pregnant for the seventh time, and I dreaded another pregnancy, birth, and recovery. The clandestine feedings of Matt had delayed this pregnancy—this baby would be two whole years younger than Matt, a personal record. Matt’s birth in 1998 had been in the hospital—my first hospital delivery—because Nate had health insuran … [Read more...]

Family Man, Family Leader: Created to be His Help Meet – Help I’ve Created a Monster. Part 1

by LivingForEternityMy husband and I met at work. We were both recovering from failed marriages, and were friends for a long time before we started dating. After having a failed marriage we were both determined not to let another one fail.We had two kids within nineteen months. That was fine as we wanted several children. He worked a lot of hours so I was a very capable manager of our home. I could feed babies and fix water leaks. I did not find it necessary to ask him about every single thing I did. If something needed fixing or doing I took care of it if he wasn’t able to. We were partners. However, as the children began to approach school age I began to question whether I wanted them t … [Read more...]

Justice is No Lady: Chapter 5 ~ In Pursuit of Biblical Theology

Warning: This story series contains descriptions of physical abuse.by Tess WilloughbyHannah was born at home in spring of 1996.  By this time, Nate had a better job at a personal injury law firm and we were able to get a three-bedroom house.Satan must have followed us, because now there were lesbians having sex in the mailbox and Nate had no idea how the pervert porn peddlers got his name and address again.I was still in a stupor, still worshipping my cult leader. The lights were on in my brain but no one was home. I think, however, that my brain’s doorbell started ringing in 1996, and Tess’s Good Sense began its three years of patiently knocking, waiting to be invited back in. Doubt … [Read more...]

Daughter of the Patriarchy: When Dreams Become Promises

by SierraAs followers of God’s final prophet and members of the elect Bride of Christ, we made a lot of promises in God's name. We promised safety to a world we presumed was in its death throes, ready to face tribulation, destruction and ultimate renewal. We promised healing, hope and happiness to those who accepted God’s provided way of escape. We promised individuals that their broken families would be restored, that their financial problems would vanish when they tithed, that God's will would give them purpose and the strength to deal with the wearying parade of everyday troubles. We promised Alissa that God would heal her daughter.Alissa was a single mother of two young boys. She wor … [Read more...]

Daughter of the Patriarchy: The Shift

by Sierra           Clear morning light filtered in the empty door of the bakery. I was alone behind the storefront, a wall of bagel baskets hanging like a curtain between me and the rest of the world. My mother busied herself in the front of the store, wiping counters and making coffee as I methodically drew and cut the clear plastic wrap in its long rolls. I wrapped another sponge cake, applied the golden bakery label, and set the finished product on a tray to be stored and sold for the Jewish holidays. It was normally one of the busiest weeks in the store: the owner was Jewish and had many connections with the synagogues in northern New Jersey. We were a hotspot for holiday feasts.The … [Read more...]

NLQ Open Comments: The Secular Quiverfull Movement

by VyckieI just came across The Secular Quiver: http://reversequiver.com/index.shtmlFrom the website:"Secular Quiver" is a movement that uses the principles of differential reproductive success to opposite ends. We think it's absurd that evangelical Christians are using the most basic principle of evolution when many don't even believe in it. We encourage scientifically minded individuals to reproduce and use alternative methods of spreading irreligious memes.Participate •Start your childbearing earlier •If you are gay or lesbian, consider the use of reproductive technologies such as IVF or artificial insemination •Homeschool your children •Blog about reverse quivering •Adopt and fost … [Read more...]

The Dead Village: Living With Disapproval

by SierraLeaving quiverfull/patriarchal Christianity means losing approval. It means your parents, children, or spouse may reject you - or worse, implicitly disapprove while claiming to maintain a loving bond. That means that every time you talk, there's another dagger through your heart - the feeling that you'll never again have their respect (if you ever did in the first place) or be a whole person in their eyes (if you ever were).It almost certainly means your community evaporates like a holographic illusion. You walk away, and it's like you left behind a burning village with only ghosts pacing the streets. Sometimes they haunt you - follow you into your new life, reminding you at … [Read more...]


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