by Suzanne Titkemeyer cross posted from her blog True Love Doesn’t Rape
Editor’s note: Written in Oct. 2016 around the time of the launch of Lori Alexander’s new book ‘The Power of the Transformed Wife’
This morning as I was preparing upcoming posts for No Longer Quivering I ended up using a quote from always unpleasant and constantly blaming in a shameful way Lori Alexander.
If you don’t know who Lori is consider yourself lucky. Lori was once affiliated with Ladies Against Feminism, although it’s been a while since I’ve seen her finger prints on anything at their site. She used to have a blog called ‘Always Learning’ that truthfully should have been labeled ‘Always Closed Minded and Judgmental’. Now she’s opened a new blog to promote a rather sad tome she’s written on how to fix your bad marriage by being the most submissive you can be. It’s called ‘The Transformed Wife’ and is a thinly veiled rewrite of another awful marriage book – Created To Be A Help Meet by Debi Pearl.
I’ve read Lori’s new book in preparation for doing a detailed book review for NLQ and mostly it’s making me sad. I don’t want to feel sorry for Lori, but I cannot help but reflect how sad and awful most of her life has been merely because she’s rather too immature to be married to anyone and that husband of hers isn’t exactly well-suited for any sort of marriage with healthy emotional barriers or happiness.
Such a horrible waste of life and many years!
But that’s not what gave me pause today. That would be a rant she wrote trying to claim that women wearing yoga pants are about the same as aborting babies or other choices that supposedly mean women are selfish sin machines determined to have their own way.
While I agree that you’re likely better off dressing for your age, your position, your body type and your activities of the day I feel even more strongly that the only person that should have any say in what you wear on your body is… drum roll please… yourself.
While I was quoting Lori I was laughing because today I’m wearing yoga pants. A rather old pair that is not as tight as they once were. It’s turned cold here in the lovely Virginia Piedmont so I’ve paired my old blue leggings with a knee-length elegant mushroom-colored sweater with a cowl neck and a pair of riding boots. Only about two inches of legging are seen between the bottom of the sweater and the top of the boots. My rear end is covered, no one can see any possible camel toe status of my crotch and my basic curvy shape is disguised by the loose fit of the tunic sweater. Put me on a horse, slap a sword in my hand and a helmet on my head and I might look more like a mounted warrior in the Middle Ages. The only skin showing is my hands and my face.
So how is this not modest? No cleavage, no clinging fabric stretched over secondary sexual characteristics can be seen. It’s not some outlandish color that catches the eyes. I dare to say I am dressed rather modestly today. Many days I wear a combination of comfortable tunic type tops and yoga pants and show very little.
While I was out running errands this morning I noticed the outfits of the ladies around me, some clearly fundamentalist mothers suffering the cold in their a-line type skirts and long sleeved tees and sweaters – the line and shapes of their bodies much more on display than my own. Women in looser fitting tees, jeans and pants, some with athletic jackets zipped over their clothing. Ladies in button ups, sweaters layered over and loose pants or skirts. Some in tight jeans and tops. In other words a variety of clothing in a array of fits on a wide range of body types.Do you know which ones are proper and appropriate for being in public? ALL of them. What you wear is no else business EVER.
This is one of the many quibbling things that those in American Evangelical churches distract themselves with instead of the real issues of the world, of the things we are called to do as followers of Christ. Why aren’t those so critical, controlling and judgment using that same energy to do something to really advance the kingdom, like help feed the poor, reach out to a struggling neighbor or just randomly love on a stranger? Instead they reduce faith down to rules on clothing and putting others down.
The church has to change if it’s going to last much longer. The deeper truths of faith aren’t this mean, petty and distracting.
Suzanne Titkemeyer is the admin at No Longer Quivering. She’s been out of the Quiverfull Evangelical world for nine years now and lives in the beautiful Piedmont section of Virginia with her retired husband and assorted creatures. She blogs at Every Breaking Wave and True Love Doesn’t Rape. She can be reached at SuzanneNLQ@
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