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...]

Rebuilding

rebuilding

by Bruce GerencserNine years have passed since I preached my last sermon, since my wife was called the “pastor’s wife.” Almost four years have passed since my wife and I determined to stop attending church. We are now among the “unchurched”, casualties of a life spent in Evangelical Christianity. Worse yet, at least according to our critics, we are now enemies of Christ and his church.You see, we not only left the Church, we left Jesus. Regardless of how some Christians parse our lives through their peculiar theological system, we are indeed two people who once were devoted, committed followers of Jesus, who are now described as an atheist husband and his agnostic wife. … [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...]

Introducing, Raised Quiverfull!

raised

by Libby AnneNine young adults who were raised in families involved in the Christian Patriarchy and Quiverfull movements have come together here to answer questions about their upbringing, their questioning, and their transition to lives in the normal world. Ranging in age from their early twenties to their early thirties, all have questioned and left the Christian Patriarchy and Quiverfull movements and all but one blog against what they see as the destructive results of those movements.These nine young adults come from an array of backgrounds (no two families in the Christian Patriarchy and Quiverfull movements are identical) and have today arrived at a variety of perspectives … [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...]

Unwrapping the Onion: Part 9: Starting a New Life

by Permission to LiveThis post is the final post in a series. Please click here to start with the series Introduction.It’s the spring of 2012 now, and we’ve moved to a new home in a new city and are making new friends and starting over. We’ve officially left the ministry and are making new career plans. My spouse has begun transition and she has been able to go by her new name and female pronouns publicly now after using them at home for months. Only now there is no second guessing over what she can wear when we go out. There is no tripping over which name to use. It’s only been a few months, but she has said “I’m so happy!” with enough frequency that it has actually gotten downright … [Read more...]

Unwrapping the Onion: Part 8: Coming Out, Bit by Bit

onion

by Permission to Live  This post is part of a series of nine posts. Please click here to start with the series Introduction.It was getting harder and harder for my spouse to put on a masculine facade when we went out. At home, after all, he was able to just be himself. It was also starting to feel awkward referring to him as a “he.” The pronouns just didn’t fit anymore. Other people started to notice too. When we went down to visit family over the summer we had several different family members ask if my spouse was gay. Apparently being a feminine male-presenting person attracts attention.The summer of 2011 was significant in another way too. I had arranged to meet up with a friend … [Read more...]

Who Was That Masked Man? Part 1

by CaluluThis is a new series that I'm starting. I actually started writing about my history with the one person that impacted me the most during my days at the old church. I'm flip, I'm sarcastic in this series but mostly I am processing what happened to me because it seems like a plot straight out of the recently cancelled series GCB (Good Christian Bitches). After telling my therapist years ago about this man I was encouraged to write it all down. I did and if I didn't laugh and poke fun I'd be crying right now. It was the most corrosive relationship I've ever been in and I didn't even have the common sense to run from it. I've changed names and some small details because until … [Read more...]

Unwrapping the Onion: Part 7: Charting a New Course

by Permission to LiveThis post is part of a series of nine posts. Please click here to start with the series Introduction.It had been a year since my spouse had come out to me. It felt like it had been much longer. So much had changed and yet nothing had changed. We still hadn’t decided how Christianity tied in with our changing reality: I was leaning further and further away from the idea of God but my spouse still believed. We felt like there were no real answers anymore. Life was not as black and white as people wanted it to be. My spouse was talking more and more about transitioning and I felt like there was no one-size-fits-all in gender identity. Maybe my spouse would become c … [Read more...]

Cult of Personality – Adventures in Recovery

by CaluluA few weeks ago I took my daughter out for an celebratory lunch at her favorite Greek restaurant. She's gotten acceptance letters from all of the colleges she's applied to plus we really needed to touch base, take a time out together from the busy of our lives. Over sovlaki and hummus she started talking about what she would say to our former pastor Patrick if she ran into him again. She had run into him an few months ago and had been so surprised she'd just hurriedly muttered out pleasantries before leaving him as rapidly as a man with his pants on fire would run for the lawn sprinklers.I had to ask her what she would say to Patrick if they were face to face. She blurted … [Read more...]


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X