Archive for October, 2011

This Week in My Depression

I meant to update yesterday but yesterday turned into one of my really, really, really bad days.  One of those days that all I wanted to do was hide under the blankets and never come out.  Sleep and never wake up.  I was numb.  Really numb.  Then, after finally getting my act together  long enough (I had some errands to run) I wanted to run away.  I mean really run away, start over somewhere new, a new life, new job, new name, new everything.

I have had these feelings before.  This time I don’t know if they are a part of the effects of the new medication or not and won’t know for at least another week or two.  I still don’t want to go to work tonight.  I just want to stay home and do nothing.  I am not one to play hooky.  I have worked this job for over two years without a real day off beyond the weekend I get.  I am bored.  I am numb.  I feel useless.  I feel like I should be doing something more.  I feel like I’ve been pigeon-holed and that I’ve settled and nothing is going to change at all from now one.  That this is my life for the rest of my life.

I don’t really have friends and the friends I do have I wouldn’t tell them about my depression.  They wouldn’t understand.  Telling my family isn’t going to happen.  They definitely wouldn’t understand and say I’m making things up, as usual.  (Considering all the garbage that goes along with my depression and healing from my abuse is all largely the result of my family, this isn’t all that surprising.)

Sorry this isn’t one of my longer posts but it’s just a bad time for me.

Abuse is Okay Because We’re Catholic

Actually, it’s not but since there is a whole thread at CAF on how spanking is sexual abuse (which is an argument I’m not going to get into though I do believe it does have merit) and so many are advocating spanking and corporal punishment because it means their children won’t go to hell.  Then you get those that say spanking didn’t hurt them in any way.  And that lack of spanking leads to all the problems we have in the world.  OR that spanking is in the Bible.  It isn’t.

Dulce de Leche has two great posts about spanking: one how it’s not just about spanking and I spanked my dog and he turned out fine which deal with the reality that spanking is abuse and there are great effects on the one spanked.

While Michael Pearls teaching hasn’t made inroads into Catholic circles (yet!), the mentality of the parent winning at all costs has in parenting.  It’s sad and disheartening that this garbage is making it’s way into any Christian believer’s life especially the Catholic believer who has access to the fullness of truth in the Catholic Church.  Yet, between the advocating for spanking (excuse me, corporal punishment. bite me.) and seeing another thread about why aren’t there more big Catholic families (can anyone say Quiverfull?)  the dangerous fringe elements of Protestantism are making their way into  Catholic families.  I have a problem with that.

Abuse is abuse no matter how you dress it up in pretty packaging and call it good parenting.  These kids who have to live with these parents are going to have to deal with consequences of their parents’ actions as adults and they may have no idea that what was done to them was abuse.  They may even spank their children because they say that they were spanked and it didn’t hurt them one bit.  They believe gentle parenting is bad because it doesn’t teach proper boundaries.  If the parent can’t teach boundaries, that’s the parent’s problem, not the child’s.

The fundamental problem with most parenting books is that it sees children as mini adults that just need to be trained right and then everything will be fine.  That’s so wrong.  Children are unique individuals that will eventually grow up to be adults but are currently people who are worthy of respect and love.  They are not rebellious demons that need to have their will broken.

Young Mom has a good post on why she no longer spanks along with other posts she has made about gentle parenting.

 

EDIT: Apparently, Pearl has made into Catholic circles.  I found this thread on CAF from 2006.  And this one mentions him as well.  And apparently, there is a “catholic” version of Pearl as well.  There is also this, this, and this.

Out with the Old Medication, In With the New; Women are Evil; and Abuse is Here to Stay

These are not all that I want to write about.  I’ve been trying to get away from really long titles.

These week in my depression: new medication.  The first one didn’t work at all.  It kept me wired instead of helping me sleep which not good for my mental health.  I need sleep to even remotely be on an even emotional keel.  So the one medication is out and a new one is in.  Hopefully, this one will work much better.

The last month has been difficult with all the changes at work. Dealing with the good supervisor leaving, being targeted by the bad supervisor, and having to deal with a misogynist jerk who refuses to work unless he is being watched by the supervisor.  Add another jerk who refuses to work and you have a disaster just waiting to explode.  The only consolation (and I know I’m bad for feeling this way) is that these idiots are on the bad supervisors shift.  They can deal with them.  There are some other issues at work that I can’t get into here but one that I can get into is the poor pay scale.  I top out at my next eval which is in December.  I will make the maximum amount for my position unless they give me a cost of living increase or I make supervisor which doesn’t seem likely since they keep hiring men.  At least I have the opportunity to switch to a day shift with the two individuals who got promoted to supervisor leaving their shifts.

Apparently, tonight is going to be one of my bad nights.  I think some of it is lack of sleep (doctor’s appointment yesterday morning threw off my sleep schedule), hormones (I should be getting my period in about the next 24 hours) and the depression.  I am in tears right now and I don’t know why.  But if I don’t continue writing, even in tears, I won’t get this post finished.

 

This post from And Sometime Tea (another Catholic blog) has a post on Blaming Women.  Some highlights:

A third thing also needs to be said: the reason for including the story out of Phoenix with the second piece is not because of the story itself, but because of the jubilant reaction to the story which I’ve seen in some corners of the internet. I don’t want to cite any specific comments because I’m not out to start a blog/FB/etc. war, but there have been more than a few of which the tone has been something like “It’s about time they kicked those blankety-blank girls off of the altar–they’ve ruined everything.” 

And that brings me to my point.

When Adam sinned in the Garden of Eden, the first thing he did was run off and leave Eve alone to deal with the serpent (which, according to Dr. Scott Hahn, was a fearsome dragon-like beast, not merely a little garter snake). The second thing he did was let Eve convince him to disobey God and eat the forbidden fruit. And the third thing he did, when God asked him about it, was to point the finger of blame at the woman who was of his own flesh and say, “Hey, it was her fault! She made me do it.”

Given how longstanding a tradition it is, then, for men to tend to blame women for things that go wrong, it shouldn’t be surprising to encounter that attitude in regard to such things as female altar servers, immodestly dressed churchgoers, and (if we may be honest) tons of other church-related issues, from issues dealing with women who have the audacity to show up with the noisy, wiggly products of their fertility in tow (and who, gasp, sometimes even nurse them while still on church property!) to women who sing at you to women who get up and do some of the readings to women who respond when Father asks people to help out as Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion. All of this, if you have a certain male mindset, is the fault of the women. It is not the fault of men who gave permission (however it was granted) for female altar servers; it is not the fault of men who let their daughters out their front doors dressed for Mass as if they hoped to solicit in the parking lot afterward (if, indeed, things are really that bad; I’ve never encountered anything quite so horrible as the writer of the second piece describes, but then, I’m female, and tend to see in unfortunately-revealing clothing nothing but a fashion mistake that the woman will hopefully correct when she becomes aware of the problem); it is the fault of women for having children and expecting those children to attend Mass–or for not arranging for babysitting etc. so the children don’t have to bother anyone until they’re old enough to be altar servers; it is the fault of women that women tend to outnumber male singers in the average parish choir by a ratio of at least three or four to one; it is the fault of women that women also outnumber the men who are willing to lector at Mass; and it is clearly the fault of women that male priests ask for Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion and that, once again, far more women than men show up in response.

I’ve seen and read comments made by men and women who say much worse than what the blogger posts.  I mean much worse, to the point that it is advocated that women be locked up and they are going straight to hell.  Because of these things I think these kinds of horrible thoughts, that I am evil, that I am at fault for men’s sins, that I am not loved by God and that God doesn’t even concern Himself with me.  Traddies are the worst because they use “tradition” as defined by them to execute this kind of oppression of women and no, I’m not talking about altar servers or readers.  They want women to be stay at home daughters who become stay at home mothers who have twenty children, who wait on their husband hand and foot, and are so useless and sinful that they will never get to heaven.  Actually, they are not unlike the Quiverfull/patriarchy movement in fundamentalist evangelical Protestantism.  They just dress it up with things like “tradition” and pull quotes out of context from papal documents saying, “See, even previous popes said women are evil and need to stay at home.”  Which is entirely untrue when you read the WHOLE document in context.

I hate that people still hate women and make women hate themselves while convincing themselves that this is a “holy, Catholic” thing to do.  It’s not.

 

Michael Pearl’s work is back in the news again due to a third child death.  Hana Williams is the third reported victim of Pearl’s “child training” ideology.  Why Not Train a Child? has several good posts about this latest little victim.  I suggest reading all the links in the posts.

Reactions to Hana Williams Story

 

A Closer Look at Pearl’s Teachings and their Relations to three deaths

The Parents of Hana Williams plead not guilty (several news accounts are listed)

The Pearls’ Official Response (I suggest having a bucket near by when reading this spew of lies)

A Closer Look at the Pearls’ Teaching and Adoption  (Hana was a child that had been adopted from Ethiopia by the Williams and had several medical and mental health issues)

A link from Why Not about older adoption which I link here just because it needed to stand on it’s own

This post about children and the myth of my happiness is a good example of the culture of death/culture of me first, always first

 

Bunch of Stuff

Yes, that’s the lame title I came up with.

I had “Depression: In the Trenches” for a post on how I’m dealing with my depression.  One word: horribly.  I’m miserable, crying a lot more, very fed up with work (and with the three idiots I work with), dealing with the fact that not only was I abused emotionally and verbally I was also physically abused through spanking.  I’m not sure I can leave out sexual abuse but most of that stems from not being allowed to have any boundaries.  I wasn’t allowed to bathe alone (my mother was forever coming in and using the toilet when I was showering), not allowed any privacy (my mother was forever going through my things but never my sisters; even as an adult home during summer break from college she would go through my things as would my sisters and they were never punished), and told I was fat and ugly and bought clothes several sizes too big to cover my fat, ugly body.  There was the not being allowed to be sick (getting a cold was tantaumount to sending my mother to hell because I was ruining her life)  which left me seeing getting sick as being weak and useless and learning not to take care of myself.  Then there was the whole “bad girls like me go to Hell” and you better believe that I was on the fast track to hell just because I was me.

I’ve been feeling so bad lately, especially when I work, that I try to focus on getting sleep instead of doing anything else.  At this point, even going to Mass is difficult.  I had been going to a different parish because my geographical parish was just too different from what I needed and I had been there for over ten years.  They’ve gone in a different direction and I wasn’t taken along for the ride.  Granted, I wouldn’t have been taken along anyways because I’m not married or have kids, don’t have family in the parish, and am a single working woman who wants more than just to settle or be pushed to the background though that’s exactly what’s happened.  The “new” parish (I’d been going there for the occasional Mass and for Reconciliation) was good: good homilies, quality music, people understood that babies needed a moment in the narthex to pull themselves together (as much as babies can do that but you get what I mean I hope) and that children were to behave.  Then I went on Sunday after not going the week before (which I needed the sleep since that night the supervisor decided to target me and tried to pull a ship load of crap on me) and wish I hadn’t.  I didn’t sleep well, Mass was hard to sit through (there have been many times that for the first half hour of Mass it takes all my will power not to walk out in tears because I’m trembling and hurting and in tears because I just can’t handle it.  There are probably times when I should have walked out just to preserve my sanity but I didn’t thinking that I was going to end up in Hell for leaving and that there was no valid reason to miss Mass.  I was actually taught that there was no reason AT ALL to miss Mass.  Not even being in the hospital and deathly ill was a good reason.  Since missing Mass was a mortal sin, there was no good reason not to go or to be late (there have been several times when I arrived in the middle of the reading, even once being as late as the Gospel).

I’m not sure I should go to Mass for a while.  I know that I have a moral obligation to attend Mass but when I end up sleep deprived and mentally ill does that matter or am I not allowed to take care of myself?  I’m not allowed to take care of myself, having being taught that others are so much more important than me that if I have to sacrifice my time and health then so be it.  So now that I think taking care of myself is important am I sinning by getting the sleep I need even if it means I have to miss Mass?  I know that in my mental state and upbringing and others would say yes.  God is more important than my health or my job.  Yes, that is the mental thinking I have.  I was taught/learned not to value myself, especially not as a person and not as a woman.  I think, as much as it hurts to write this, that I need to take care of myself and if that means missing Mass for a while, then so be it.  I will suffer the consequences but I need sleep especially working a twelve hour graveyard shift and to help treat my depression.

Then the traddies have been at it again.  At least the thread on what women should wear is gone (yes, there was a whole thread and oh so definitely not the first on the matter on how women needed to dress like an Amish women but in a burqa because men are pigs and if they saw skin they would be led into heinous sin and even rape and beat women even though it’s their fault anyways.  I see a movement even among non-traddies to marginalize and even demonize women.  The Phoenix Cathedral has decided to limit altar serving to boys again.  I don’t have a problem with that.  The problem I DO have is that there are so many people who go “look, see, if they hadn’t allowed girls to serve in the first place we wouldn’t have had to deal with feminism, the sex abuse scandals, few priestly vocations, the OF, Protestants, and Donald Trump’s hair.”  They see women and girls as evil and as the cause of everything that is wrong in the world and in the Church.  They think they are the arbiters of all things Catholic and can dictate what the Church does and does not allow.  They act more Catholic than the Pope.

This post by Br. JR highlights something extremely important about the issue:

There is certainly nothing immoral about female altar servers. Those who claim that it is immoral, scandalous, sacriligeous or evil are sadly mistaken. The Church never endorses evil. It is allowed and therefore, this is not a moral question. It’s a question about liturgical roles, not about morality. It is not a social justice question either. Social justice would mean that someone is being deprived a right. Serving at the altar is not a right.

We have to be very careful not to make it a moral issue or a social justice issue. It is neither. When children hear adults talking about this as a moral issue or a social justice issue, it sends the wrong message to them. It tells them that the Church is wrong, cruel and uncaring, because she does not allow women servers. On the flip side, if children hear us calling female servers a scandal, we’re telling them that the Church endorses scandal and sacrilge. That’s horrible too.

I’m tired of being told that being a woman is bad and that I am the cause of all the problems in the world and if I just dressed in a burqa, was submissive all the time, and permanently pregnant then all the world’s and Church’s ills would be cured.  That’s not how the world will be cured.  It will be by Christ and not us that the world has been saved.  The world isn’t a horrible, evil place that we must avoid at all cost.  It is good but fallen place that contains people who choose to do evil things and to sin rather than to love God.  But people and especially Christians would rather pigeonhole God and others than understand that that doesn’t work.  God doesn’t obey people, people are to obey God.  People would rather make God in their own image rather than be made in God’s own image.

Why do Christians (and yes I include Catholics in this) demonize people who self-identify as homosexual?  They think that homosexual are all about sex and molesting children.  It’s like homosexuals can’t be people, that they are only their sexual organ being used for the wrong purpose.  I’ve seen people (not talking about Westboro Baptist, though they are uniquely fringe and yet there are people who think WB are right) say that homosexuals can’t be saved, that they are really heterosexuals that just need to be “cured,” they are always having sex with multiple partners at a time, that they are going to molest children no matter what, that they should be locked up, that they should even be executed all for having a disordered sexual orientation.  Christians and yes, even Catholics, have advocated these things.  Homosexuals, transgender, transsexual, bisexual, queer are PEOPLE.  They just have an incurable disorder that they have to live with (I know this really simplifies a really complicated issue but I’m trying to point out that they are people not an orientation/self-identification).  They are God’s children as well not just heterosexual people who have sex only to have babies.  Too many Christians, too many Catholics refuse to see that.  I bet if they met a real life LGBTQ person they would act differently (maybe) than what they spout on the Internet though I highly doubt it.

I mention all this because I work with a LGBTQ and that person is extremely professional and good at their job.  I like working with this person.  They don’t talk about their personal, private life or make waves about their lifestyle.  They do the job they were hired for.  I can respect that.  Yet, there are people that think this person shouldn’t even be allowed to work because they might lead somebody into their horribly evil lifestyle and away from Jesus and that all they want is sex.   I don’t get it.  I’ve worked with three LGBTQ people over the years and the only issues I’ve had have been with either their lack of professionalism (they didn’t put very much effort into the job they were doing if they even bothered to show up) or they didn’t take care of their self (one had diabetes and never seemed to care that just a few little things meant they could live a long, healthy life) not their sexual orientation.  They weren’t and aren’t evil people.  Sinners, yes, just like me, but not evil and yes living a sinful lifestyle that had long term consequences but not completely evil minions of Satan (I think Justin Bieber and Katy Perry are more likely).

A song that seems to describe parts of how I’m feeling right now:

(Ignore the fact that it is a NUMB3RS video)

And some Casting Crowns:

 


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