December 8, 2010

[Note: this series is dedicated to Quivering Daughters by the former-Quiverfull moms at No Longer Quivering.]
by Vyckie

Proverbs 22:6 says: Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it.

Damn ~ I really hate that verse. Let me tell you why.

1) It is from this proverb that we Quiverfull moms got the idea that through diligent training we could ensure our children would become mature Christians firmly grounded in the Lord and His word. Of course, we all know that God has no grandchildren ~ our sons and daughters must come to their own faith in Christ ~ still, there is a promise implied in Proverbs 22:6 which leads QF parents to believe that by our intimate involvement in their day-to-day lives, we can influence our children for righteousness.

So we try.

2) It is from this same verse that our children get the idea that their adult future is our responsibility. I don’t think we ever blatantly taught our daughters that their marriage, their career (or lack thereof), their walk with God, their ultimate happiness ~ all are inseparably dependent upon their upbringing ~ but we did teach them the principle of authority … and with authority comes responsibility. If Quiverfull parents are going to claim the authority to guide and direct our daughters’ education, training, choice of a mate, career path (or lack thereof), and even their daily devotions and quiet time ~ then are we shocked when these same daughters blame the parents when things don’t work out and they are struggling?

In other words ~ we can’t say, “Mom & Dad are to be the primary influence over our children’s education” unless we’re also willing to be fully accountable when those children are in some ways unprepared for higher education, the marketplace or domestic duties due to gaps in their learning. We can’t spend years teaching our daughters to trust and expect their parents’ intimate involvement in their choice for a life mate, and later, when as young women, they are in relationships which are necessarily messy and imperfect, say, “Don’t blame me because you are unhappy!”

This is Steadfast Daughters’ dilemma: books such as “Raising Maidens of Virtue” inculcate an expectation of higher standards, better-than-average daughters who excel in every way. It is not only the QF Moms who have these highly idealistic expectations ~ our daughters catch the vision and they’re trusting in the Lord to work His will in their lives as they submit to His established authorities ~ i.e., Mom & Dad. So when the Quivering Daughters deal with hurt, disappointment, despair (all of which are common experiences in all families ~ not just Quiverfull homes, as Steadfast Daughters repeatedly points out) ~ Stacey and her guest bloggers want to say, “So we’re not perfect ~ there are no perfect parents ~ don’t blame us!”

It is true that girls in every family experience abuse to varying degrees ~ regardless of their religious beliefs, non-beliefs or admitted confusion. The difference is ~ Quiverfull families have a clearly stated objective of raising morally and spiritually superior daughters. Non-quivering families say, “Let’s all do our best and that will be good enough.” Mary Pride calls that “No-Fault Parenting” and says it is shameful. In Quiverfull homes, there is no such thing as “good enough.” The children are expected to be superior ~ and the parents are expected to be superior too.

This sets the stage for big-time disappointment all around.

Children who have been raised with unrealistic expectations will not let their imperfect parents off the hook as readily as kids raised in regular families. “To whom much is given, much will be required.”  We taught this to our daughters … taught ’em diligently ~ remember?! ! Let’s not be surprised that these young women have learned their lessons well.


This post should not be construed as saying anything negative about the book Quivering Daughters or about how its author speaks of her parents. Many, many “Quivering Daughters” do blame Quiverfull teachings and treat their parents with compassion and understanding, as Quivering Daughters does, and these women do their best to shield their parents and their parents’ identities when speaking or writing of these matters publically.

However, there are many ex-Quiverfull mothers who do find themselves dealing with older daughters (and sometimes sons) who are extremely angry ~ they lash out at their mothers ~ blaming, refusing to understand and/or forgive. I am finding that this is often a necessary part of the process of leaving the cultic mentality. It is very painful ~ but at the same time, we ex-QF moms recognize that the enmeshment which is part of the Quiverfull experience sometimes necessitates that our children go through this. Because they were never permitted to establish their independence in their teenage years, it’s as if they must do it now, in their mid- and late-twenties. It is the spiritually abusive Quiverfull teachings that we moms blame for this, as well.

We have already discussed Steadfast Daughters on the NLQ forum here ~ comments for this post are open below.

This series is written by Vyckie Garrison with the help of many ex-QF moms on behalf of Quivering Daughters.

Steadfast Daughters in a Quivering World:

December 3, 2010

[Note: this series is dedicated to Quivering Daughters by the former-Quiverfull moms at No Longer Quivering.]
by Vyckie

Stacey McDonald, author of “Raising Maidens of Virtue: A Study of Feminine Loveliness for Mothers and Daughters,” has set up a new website devoted to responding to Hillary McFarland’s “Quivering Daughters” book and website.

As one who embraced the idea of trusting the Lord with my family planning and devoted myself to raising up polished “arrows” fit for the Lord’s service ~ “Raising Maidens of Virtue” was a much-referenced book in my large collection of “biblical family” materials. I loved the title. The words “Feminine Loveliness” filled my imagination with visions of my five lovely daughters whom I wanted above all to be wholesome, carefree, healthy-minded, devoted, steadfast, and full of joy ~ secure in my love and in the love of the Lord.

The reason I was so enamored of Stacey’s writings is because, like Stacey, I had experienced a less-than-ideal childhood ~ a broken family, abuse, insecurity ~ and I wanted to spare my own children as much of that sort of pain as possible. I believe that’s the motivation for the majority of parents ~ and especially Christian parents who adopt the Quiverfull ideals ~ homeschooling, courtship, sheltering children, stay-at-home daughters, etc.

On her Steadfast Daughters site, Stacey shares some very painful memories of her own agonizing childhood ~ reading her account, my heart went out to Stacey. All those feelings of intensely desiring to protect my children from all the hurt, the uncertainty, the cruelty and the indifference of “this world” ~ my determination that things would be different for me and my children overwhelmed me and for a moment, I was back in my old Quiverfull reality.

So I will admit to feeling nostalgic and surprisingly sympathetic to the mother’s-heart senitment which I read on the Steadfast Daughters website. I believe Stacey and the other SD contributors when they repeatedly claim to love the Lord and their children ~ I believe as parents, they have the best of intentions ~ they are intelligent, kind-hearted, caring Christians who only desire to give their ALL for the sake of bringing up a quiver full of children for the glory of the Lord.

I think Hillary ~ whose Quivering Daughters outreach is proving to be a considerable challenge, bringing much-needed balance and perspective to the “Virtuous Daughters” ideal ~ would agree that Quiverfull mothers such as Stacey have noble motives. They certainly have not chosen these incredibly grand ideas and the demanding lifestyle for the sake of their own convenience or from lazy, ignorant, or selfish hearts. They’re not doing it because it’s fun ~ or because it is their first preference or only alternative. These moms are sincerely convinced that they are doing the Lord’s absolute best for their families. Hillary understands and recognizes that QF parents do love their children ~ and for that reason, the tone of her book is incredibly gentle and her accounts of abuse are often understated.

It’s a dilemma which all survivors wrestle with when we write about mental, emotional, and spritual abuse ~ certainly we want to expose the harm in order to warn others and provide refuge for those who are seeking support and comfort ~ but at the same time, we do not want to lash out in bitterness and anger against those who, despite our hurt and suffering, we know to be good people at heart.

That’s why most of the NLQ guest writers share their stories using a pseudonym ~ they leave out identifying details ~ they desire to protect the identity of their family. Quivering Daughters walk a fine line between honoring parents and telling the truth about their experience of the QF/P family life.

One theme which pervades the Steadfast Daughters website could be summarized this way:

We, your parents, mean well. We love God and we love our children. We strive to do our very best ~ but we are not perfect ~ sometimes we mess up and we unintentionally hurt our children. Please don’t let our mistakes lead you to bitterness and hatred ~ hold fast to the Lord ~ forgive and forebear.

What makes the Quiverfull teachings especially pernicious is the unlikely, but unmistakable combination of very good intentions and really, really bad ideas.

Since “waking up” from the Quiverfull dream world ~ I’ve spent a lot of time and brain power puzzling over this: Sincerity and good intentions should count for something.

How many times as a fundamentalist Believer did I hear a preacher or teacher say, “It’s possible to be sincerely wrong!!”?

I do not want that to be true.

Of all the teachings which I no longer believe ~ this is the one I’d most like to be a complete and total lie.

I haven’t been on speaking terms with God for quite a while ~ but if I were to have a conversation with The Big Guy ~ here’s the very first thing I’d like to know: How is it that my whole-hearted sincerity was not sufficient to protect me from horrible deception and from harming myself and my family? I mean, the Lord supposedly knows my heart ~ He knew that I was willing to do WHATEVER ~ even to the point of nearly losing my life ~ so why didn’t He honor my devotion by steering me clear of the craziness? Instead, I was absolutely certain that the Lord was leading our family to follow “the old paths” ~ Quiverfull was not my idea! Warren & I were finished ~ he had a vasectomy and we were DONE! But, God … He is the One who revealed these truths to me ~ and, “though He slay me” ~ I trusted in Him.

In my journey toward healing and wholeness, I’ve had to face some hard facts ~ and this one for me is the hardest of all ~ and yet, it’s inescapably true: Sincerity and good intentions do not make right.


Consider the mothers at Jonestown ~ do you honestly believe that none of those moms who put the cups filled with deadly Kool-aid to their babies’ lips actually loved their children? The effectiveness of the cyanide was in no way correlated to the motivations of Mommy’s heart.

With all my heart, I wish that our love, our sincerity, our intelligence, our diligence, our sold-out dedication, our blood, sweat and tears could somehow guarantee protection and justice for our children. Reality tells me ~ it isn’t so.

We have already discussed Steadfast Daughters on the NLQ forum here ~ comments for this post are open below.

This series is written by Vyckie Garrison with the help of many ex-QF moms on behalf of Quivering Daughters.

Steadfast Daughters in a Quivering World:

October 22, 2014


This is Suzanne and I have a quick foreword here as an introduction to Vyckie Garrison’s piece.

You know, it’s hard sometimes for people in different stages of healing and different perspectives to actually understand the pain of the other. (more…)

January 8, 2011

Hi, Everyone ~ just wanted to let you all know that I have not been doing so great lately which is why it’s been so quiet here and on the forum.I’ve had an almost-perpetual headache that won’t leave me alone. So I’m just trying to keep up with everyday stuff ~ and I really don’t have the energy or presence of mind for it. Ugh ~ I really hate when my physical stuff interferes with my ability to think.

On Thursday, I had a “minor procedure” ~ to remove a suspicious mole from my breast ~ it wasn’t really a big deal ~ except that now I have a lesion which is uncomfortable and itchy and distracting.

Last night, we had Heather and her family over for dinner ~ just a few minutes before they arrived, Andrew came home from the YMCA with a broken wrist. Ugh. He didn’t need a cast ~ but the fracture is on his left wrist and he is left handed ~ so it’s hard for him cuz he naturally wants to use that hand and when he does ~ it hurts. Sad

It was so weird looking at Andrew’s x-rays. I have looked at hundreds of x-rays ~ all of them from Berea, Chasse and Hazelle (and myself, of course) who have this bone condition ~ so the bones are always covered with cauliflower-shaped bumps. Andrew’s bones are so straight and smooth ~ it was easy to spot the fracture cuz it was the only dark spot on an otherwise perfectly white bone. On the girls’ x-rays, there are so many abnormalities ~ we’d have had to really study the films to figure out what was “normal” bone spur stuff and find a break. The contrast just kind of freaked me out ~ I realized how accustomed I am to seeing bumpy bones on x-rays ~ and now I think I understand why the doctors that I first took Chasse to were so fascinated by her x-rays. I’m glad that I took their interest as an indication that those doctors didn’t have much experience with this bone condition ~ and so sought out a facility where the doctors see these lumpy, bumpy x-rays all the time and were not impressed with Chasse’s x-rays at all.

Anyway ~ I don’t know why I wrote all that. It just got me thinking that it’s possible to be so used to abnormal, deformed stuff ~ that when you encounter the healthy and normal ~ it seems bizarre.

Hopefully, I’ll be back to posting soon. We have planned three more installments in the Steadfast Daughters series: KR Wordgazer is working on a piece about Legalism ~ Daisy will be writing about “Own Your Own Stuff” ~ and I am going to conclude the series with “Spiritual Abuse.”

June 4, 2020

Over the last week we’ve seen new ever more racist statements falling from the lips/fingers of Lori Alexander of The Transformed Wife. All the while screaming that she is no racist, even while arguing with ladies of color in her chat room. Why does Lori think she’s not a racist while making racist statements? Two things. The Bible does not speak of racism, so in her mind it does not exist. The other reason is more difficult and problematic. She’s a fan of Quiverfull pastor Voddie Baucham.

Ah yes, Voddie Baucham who seems to have fallen off the Evangelical radar, sort of their very own sole black pastor. An Uncle Tom who will say and do anything that works to get his way. Who spearheaded a lot of the whole disgusting purity movement, to the point where he stated in a video that daughters needed to sit in fathers laps to satisfy a father’s need for loving attention from young women. He and those damn purity rings. He filmed “Return of the Daughters” and was in league of Doug Phillips of Vision Forum and Geoff Botkin, father of the Botkin sisters and their Visionary Daughters movement.

This scene from the movie “Courageous” is supposedly modeled on Voddie Baucham and his teachings.

Holy incest Batman!

Our own Cindy Kunsman has written extensively about Voddie, and her interactions and her voluminous correspondence with a rather narcissistic him. Cindy’s history with Voddie can be found at her website. While Voddie was embraced by white Quiverfull he didn’t have quite as much success in the African American community. His own daughter Jasmine has turned against much of what he taught repudiating much of what she wrote at her long deleted blog Joyfully at Home.

This. THIS evil chaotic person and Uncle Tom is who Lori keeps mentioning in her pitiful attempts to be seen as ‘not racist’ What follows is a conversation with a lady of color attempting to make Lori understand the issues going on right now. Lori steadfastly refuses to understand, sticking her fingers in her ears like the Vacome lady in those Mad TV skits.

I am not entirely sure that Lori is Lori here. Some of this sounds more like Ken, than Lori. The singular focus, the verbiage. You decide.

This is just another version of “I can’t be a racist because I have a black friend”

and to add insult to injury now Lori is in her chatroom trying to promote gun violence. Jesus wept. She’s completely evil.

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December 7, 2014

smokeashby Cindy Kunsman cross posted from her blog Under Much Grace

What are your earliest memories like?
I remember some events as what seem like still photographs from when I was very young – like the yellow diaper service pail on the front porch with an embossed stork on it, though the pigment in the pattern had faded. I remember my mother sitting beside my white crib, reading different books to me. Though I could not have had a visit with him after I was three years old, I remember my orthopedist. He had jet black hair and wore a smock like doctors wore in black and white movies. I remember really liking him, but I don’t remember talking to him or why I saw him. I remember my grand geek fascination with the magiciadias when Brood X made their seventeen year appearance, just before my fourth birthday. They are pictures in the album of my mind, accompanied only by the sense of joy, excitement, or curiosity that I feel when they’re called back into my consciousness. I have to rely on the history that I learned from my family to put those pictures into perspective.


March 2, 2014

by Nancy Campbell from Above Rubies – You Are A Watch Dog

Mother, you are the guardian of your little flock. It’s a 24/7 job! 1 Peter 5:8 tells us we must “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.” He wants to devour your children. He wants to get hold of their minds and infiltrate them with subtle deceptions against God and His truth. He wants to mar their spirits and take away their purity. He wants to destroy their souls. (more…)

May 28, 2013

by Tony Reinke from John Piper’s Desiring God – “Those Deleted Tweets”

Monday night, in the wake of the devastating tornado in Oklahoma, John Piper posted two tweets at 11:00pm (CST). Both tweets quoted the first chapter of Job. (more…)

September 9, 2011

Jane Douglas (“Daisy”) was at one time a pastor’s wife, homeschool mum and advocate of QF patriarchal Christianity. She is now none of these things and is instead discovering the joys and challenges of living, loving and learning in a whole new way with her children in their home in Australia. In her spare time Jane works on her university studies and blogs at All the Way Out.

Crushing Daisies ~ Ways in Which Patriarchal Fundamentalism Harms Its Children by Daisy

(1) Work, Work, Work!

(2) The Little House on the Prairie Fashion Club

More from Daisy:

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