Quoting Quiverfull: Bad Attitudes?

Quoting Quiverfull: Bad Attitudes? April 10, 2013

by Nancy Campbell of Above Rubies in Don’t Allow Bad Attitudes – April 8, 2013

I have been posting about training our children to have obedient ears. Another important area of child training is training our children out of bad attitudes. It is the fleshly nature to respond with a negative attitude when things are not going just the way we like them. However, if we let our children get away with pouting, putting on a glum look, “packing a sad,” maintaining a bad attitude and mood, we set them up for problems in adulthood, and especially in their future marriage. The basis of these attitudes is selfishness and it is selfish attitudes that cause many marriages to fail.

I think of Ahab in 1 Kings 21 who got into a mood because he couldn’t get his own way. Because Naboth would not sell his vineyard to him, he went into his house “vexed and sullen,” lay down on his bed, turned his face to the wall and wouldn’t eat! What a wimp! He obviously was not trained by his parents and so was still acting like a three year old in adulthood.

Deal with bad attitudes in your children immediately. Nip them in the bud! Don’t allow them in your home. Of course, you will be showing a good example in your own life. They won’t see you putting on “the silent treatment” of getting into a bad attitude where you can cut the atmosphere with a knife!

When raising our children, we never allowed a bad attitude or response. We dealt with it immediately and severely. Today, our children don’t know how to get into a bad attitude because they were trained to have a good attitude. This blesses their marriage and therefore they all have the “best of marriages.”

Comments open below

QUOTING QUIVERFULL is a regular feature of NLQ – we present the actual words of noted Quiverfull leaders and ask our readers: What do you think? Agree? Disagree? This is the place to state your opinion. Please, let’s keep it respectful – but at the same time, we encourage readers to examine the ideas of Quiverfull honestly and thoughtfully.

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


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  • Merbie

    Or it just teaches kids to suppress their feelings (and become adults who suppress their feelings) instead of finding the source of those feelings and looking for solutions. Abolishing bad attitudes doesn’t fix anything–just makes the child look acceptable. What is at the root, that the child is unhappy? There is more to parenting than just dealing with the surface issues (making things look good on the outside). It’s a tough job!

  • Nea

    All you’ve trained your children to do is know that anything less than the facade you demand will get the crap beaten out of them. That’s not a blessing, it’s abuse. You have no idea if those marriages are good, because the kids can’t come to you and can’t tell you their real feelings.

    It really is all about the facade in this lifestyle, isn’t it?

  • Merbie

    “You have no idea if those marriages are good, because the kids can’t come to you and can’t tell you their real feelings.”

    Yes, yes, yes! This is me. It feels so good to hear someone recognize this problem!

  • I grew up with this. Ugh, it may look like a good idea but it sure isn’t. It’s sweeping dirt under the rug. Let your kids talk about their real feelings and show their real moods. If you don’t, one day when your children are old enough to show you how they really feel you may be surprised at how much “attitude” was hidden under that facade. Others may never show you, saving their real selves for people in their lives who let them be themselves. Others will struggle to know who they really are or feel terrible that negative emotions actually exist inside of them (as they have been trained to believe something normal is in fact not normal). It is abusive to try to control someone’s thoughts and moods and it is particularly abusive to do so using the threat of corporal punishment.

  • Nea

    Oh, Merbie, I’m so sorry.

  • madame

    Why is everything always about marriage? It’s like having a wonderful marriage were the ultimate goal in life.

  • Persephone

    Because that’s a woman’s only goal, and popping out babies. We’re houseslaves with wombs.

  • JetGirl

    Yep yep yep. And that is why I don’t tell my parents anything about my life.

  • Persephone

    It’s the only goal for women, houseslaves with wombs.

  • Persephone

    I have to agree that regularly throwing tantrums and sulking is childish and immature, and children need to be taught coping skills, but with teaching and instruction, not beatings, and not denying their feelings. But Nancy, reliably, takes this idea, twists it, increases it exponentially, and pounds it in.

  • Nea

    Don’t forget that every child also has to be a walking, talking advertisement to how “right” their parents’ methods of childrearing were. That’s a goal too.

  • Nea

    Thing is, this kind of “childrearing” doesn’t teach actual coping skills. Coping is how to deal with a problem. What she’s teaching is how to ignore it and smile until the day you snap.

    But then, pounding someone too weak to fight back until they give you no trouble is so much easier than actually raising a child to be a fully capable adult.

  • texcee

    Once when I was undergoing counselling, I was describing to my doctor an altercation my husband and I had gotten into, resulting in his physically attacking me. I could have been discussing what I’d made for supper for all the emotion I showed. She stopped me, a look of horror on her face, and said, “You are like a soldier. You have wrapped a wall of armor around yourself and nothing touches you.” That was a break through moment for me, because I knew it was how I’d been conditioned to behalf my entire life — don’t allow any negative emotion out or any hurt in. Just pretend it never happened. I began to tear down that protective wall from that day forward.

  • Tori

    Always be good, always behave, do as you are told. You can only “feel” when given permission to do so, and then only if that “feeling” is acceptable. Because YEAH, that is REAL happinesss. God sanctioned and EVERYTHING.

  • Kimberly

    I so have experienced what Heatherjanes is saying about the different outcomes of suppressing feelings. My husband and his siblings were not allowed to express or acknowledge feelings, which resulted in his stuffing feelings, only to have to have them coaxed out by me or to react in passive aggressive ways; one sister has spent a lifetime dealing with guilt and anger; and the other sister seems to have stuffed her feelings and works and serves herself into the ground. Just because children are “disciplined” not to express feelings doesn’t mean they don’t have them.

  • madame

    Children have to learn how to express their feelings and how to solve problems. Sulking, throwing a tantrum, hitting, are all not ok, and children have to learn that early on. But they should be able to express their feelings in a safe environment, and where is it safer than at home?

  • Independent Thinker

    Has Nancy ever heard of introverts? Some people just need to process an experience alone before moving on for a while.

  • Independent Thinker

    I am glad you are working thru what you have endured. That would be a nearly impossible thing for many people to overcome.

  • RachelB

    I have to agree that regularly throwing tantrums and sulking is childish and immature,

    I agree with you on this, but also– it’s developmentally normal for children to be childish sometimes. They’re not adults.

  • Cranston

    It might be just me but this sounds a lot more like thought control than child rearing. Her children would not be out of place among those always smiling North Koreans. They have to display good attitudes all the time as well.