by Mel cross posted from her blog When Cows and Kids Collide
Editor’s note: Welcome back Mel and CONGRATULATIONS!
I’ve started blogging again after a several month break. I’m pregnant and my body responded to the change in hormones by having my digestive system go berserk and my hips widened by two inches from relaxing soft tissue which lead to lots of hip and back pain. So, yeah, I spent most of the summer curled into a ball.
Good news is between a doctor-recommended mix of Unisom and B6 that caused me to stop vomiting and start eating again and lots of stretching, I’m back to my usual sardonic self.
Added bonus: when I restarted my grad school program, I found a free voice-based transcription software package online to help me transcribe the interviews I am collecting for my thesis. This package lets me prepare selected quotes from the Botkin Sisters book in a quarter of the time it took me to type myself from the book. Plus, reading this book aloud is a simple pleasure. It reads a bit like a 1950’s etiquette manual written by a grandmother rather than a 21st century book written by two women in their early twenties.
Let’s dive back in:
Overarching Theme: Being involved in starting a romance is horrifyingly wrong!
Trying to start things
Not that it’s wrong to introduce people or say nice things about person A to person B and if one’s interests are known to be bigger than love and marriage- if one of the general relationship broker and not just a romance broker – people will likely take such things in the healthy spirit in which it was meant. But then there’s a kind of matchmaker that a friend of ours described as “much to be feared”. Like the kind that sets up introductions and tete-a-tetes as though they were directing their own personal soap opera, and stand off to the side to watch and giggle. Or like the man who once called out loudly during a large dinner, “so X wants to marry one of the Y girls, and can’t decide which one!” leaving X sitting at that very moment across from the Y girls to choke on his soup and turn purple. Not only did no marriage is come of it but the friendship possibilities were largely spoiled as well (not to mention the appetites). Or like the matchmaker that has a dreadful taste and keeps trying to set us up with her the lonely, strange friends. (pg. 181-182)
- So now the only people allowed to act as matchmakers are the parents of the teenagers? I’ve never liked playing matchmaker but some people are quite good at it. if I were the Botkin Sisters, I would NOT hesitate to turn my nose up at a good date or courtship or whatever.
Yes, standing off to the side and watching two people you’ve introduced meet each other and giggling is immature. Like Junior High-level of immaturity . That’s why we don’t let junior high students be matchmakers. However, real adults generally do not behave like this. if you are a real adult and your friends behave like this, you need to find new friends.
Be honest now. How many married couples do you know that never had an awkward moment while dating due to an odd family member making an offhand reference? X may marry one of the Y girls someday and this would be a hilarious story to pass on in the family.
- The Botkin sisters think that their friends keep setting them up with lonely, strange dates. Pot, meet kettle.
- I am amazed at how bitchy the Botkin Sisters are towards their “friends”. Yeah, they lob some half-hearted criticisms at nameless feminists, but they save most of their venom for people they actually know. That’s quite disturbing.
Trying to stop things
Often this is because the meddler actually wants to start something else. We’ve seen good conversations hijacked by jealous third parties. We’ve seen people try to sabotage other people’s relationships (sometimes throwing themselves in the way or interposing other people). We’ve seen girls complain about guys talking to and befriending other girls which would normally be the kind of thing that they would promote, were not their own interests in the way) and raising motions to get these things stopped. (pg. 182)
- I really think the Botkin Sisters need new friends. This behavior is age appropriate between 12 and 14 years of age and should be completely gone by age 20.
- When they use the word “interposing” this is actually a long set up for a footnote that invokes the Doctrine of Interposition as a joke. Look, I love academic jokes as much as the next person but your audience has to know the doctrine for the joke to make any sense. Based on my Google search, very few people study or use the Doctrine of Interposition on a regular basis.
- Man, talk about cutting off your own nose to spite your face. Trying to get boy-girl talk banned will come back to bite you when you meet the next cute guy. Of course, most of us learn that lesson in – surprise, surprise! – Junior High.
Looking out for number one
Rather than looking out for everyone else is good, sometimes we’re actually just looking out for our own good. Maybe we’re not trying to set and match someone else’s game. Maybe our own love life is the soap opera that we’re trying to write and direct. Maybe we’re manipulating circumstances and engineering stale mates among our friends because we want something or someone for ourselves. We interpose, hijack, flatter, slander, stalk and show two faces so that we can win this game. (pg. 185)
Welcome to reality. Most adults are in control of their own love life. They choose to take an active role in it. This is not new nor should it be condemned.
- Ahh. Another example of “one thing is not like the other” from the Botkin Sisters. Flattery can be a part of romantic relationship. Hijacking, slandering, stalking and being two-faced is likely to end badly in the long run – and stalking is illegal. (Well, so is hijacking, but they are using a different use of the word….)
- Looking back over various relationships and people who try to sabotage other people’s relationships, I can’t think of many examples where the relationship actually ended because of the sabotuer’s actions. I mean, the couple isn’t stupid; you can tell when someone is messing with you. Plus, I can’t think of any time that the sabotuer ended up in a long-term relationship with the person whose relationship they ended.
Well, the Botkin Sisters are really scraping the bottom of the barrel now for stories. Next up, lots of really helpful lists – especially if you want to get rid of any female friends you currently have.
Mel is a science teacher who works with at-risk teens and lives on a dairy farm with her husband. She blogs at When Cows and Kids Collide She is also an very valuable source of scientific information for us here at NLQ. Mel is also blessed with the ability to look at the issues of Quiverfull with a rational mind and break them down to their most basic of elements.
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