Posts Tagged 'neglect'

Quiverfull and Childhood

Part Three

Warning: I will be talking about various types of abuse in this post and have inserted photos where appropriate.  Be advised.

This post builds off the discussion from Part Two.  I mentioned previously that many girls are forced to raise their younger siblings because their mothers just don’t parent.  Or in the case of Michele Duggar, passes the responsibility of parenting to a daughter so that she can keep having babies.

Since Quiverfull is focused on babies and numbers, children as individuals with needs are in an odd phase.  They aren’t babies and they aren’t married adults.  These two phases are the only ones that matter in Quiverfull.  That’s where the priorities are focused. 

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Courtesy of Google Images

Children are then ignored until they get noticed.  The phase of childhood itself is ignored until someone notices a child acting (as in any sort of movement, not just bad or irresponsible behavior) or speaking.  The phase of childhood is considered a messy wasteland to be conquered by the parents rather than enjoyed as a season of human life. 

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Courtesy of Google Images

First, children are just numbers, not actual individuals with wants and needs and desires. They are soldiers in a battles against the secular world.

Two, children are considered property of their parents.  The parents have rights.  The children do not.  The children are merely objects to manipulate.

Three, children are seen as inherently sin filled and willingly disobedient.  Children are only capable of sin and incapable of virtue. 

Four, children must be homeschooled because any other sort of schooling is un-biblical, full of dangerous anti-Christian agendas, and a means of government interference.

Fifth, children rarely receive medical assistance in any form.due to paranoia about the government and beliefs that any healing is God’s will and can only happen if He desires it.

While there are more, these are a good starting place.

Point One: Children are individuals but not in Quiverfull.  Quiverfull is a movement that emphasizes numbers of people and not actual people.  Add in the distaste for childhood as a phase of life and things get a lot worse.

Points Two and Three go together.   When children are not seen as people, they have no rights or protections.  They are also open to great abuses, neglect, violence, and even homicide.  Since many parents come to believe that corporal punishment and spanking are acceptable means of forcing a child to comply with their demands, many children are physically abused in the name of love and God.  Many use verses out of the Book of Proverbs to justify their spanking.  They also read and endorse abusive parenting methods like Michael Pearl’s To Train Up A Child (which compares training children to training animals and to start spanking at three months), James Dobson (again comparing children to dogs), Rev Bradley, and Shepherd a Child’s Heart.

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Courtesy of Google Images

There is no biblical basis for beating the sin out of children so that they become God fearing adults.  But it is a belief espoused in Pearl’s and heavily hinted at in Gothard’s work (though I don’t know if he advocated corporal punishment). 

Pearl advocated “first time obedience” and demands it of babies.  “First time obedience” is the expectation that when an adult tells a child to do something that child must obey immediately.  Any hesitation, finishing a task already started, or asking for directions on how to do that something is seen as disobedience and must be punished immediately. 

For example: a thirteen month old baby is sitting on the floor, playing with a toy.  He puts the toy in his mouth (babies like to put things in their mouth; this is normal).  The mother sees this and tells the baby to take the toy out of his mouth.  The baby keeps the toy in his mouth because he doesn’t really understand what his mother is saying.  However, Pearl says the child is actively choosing to be disobedient and therefore needs to be spanked right this minute.

But first time obedience is expected of all children.  And being disobedient or even “rebellious” (a vague term that parents use to justify any spanking or to justify their anger and their desire to hit a child). Spanking then becomes the default method of parenting instead of teaching the child why let alone understanding child development in any way.

Children in Quiverfull face lots of violence, abuse, neglect, and are forced to behave in developmentally inappropriate ways. 

Teenage girls are expected to parent their younger siblings. 

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Courtesy of Google Images

Many children face the threat of corporal punishment which I’ve expanded to include not just spanking but any use of hitting as punishment which includes slapping, punching, using some type of implement. 

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Courtesy of Google Images

Many children are verbally abused through threats of corporal punishment regardless if those threats are carried out, through name calling, through insults, and through intimidation. 

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Courtesy of Google Images

Children are sexually abused not just through molestation and rape but also abused through body shaming, purity culture, and dress codes. 

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Courtesy of Google Images

Children are psychologically abused when parents threaten them, manipulate situations so that a child fails expectations,  play mind games, and through gaslighting.

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Children are spiritually abused because they are raised to follow an extreme belief system, are threatened with an angry, vengeful God that is out to get them and can’t wait to see them fail, and through the use of illegal and immoral tactics that are justified by the use of scripture verses.

Children are educationally neglected through the use of homeschooling.  Many parents use homeschooling as a means of isolating their children from others so that the parents not only do not have to teach their children a standard education but so that many parents can abuse their children and not have others know about the abuse.  Many children who receive a homeschooling education are usually very deficient in many subject.  Some children are not allowed to finish or even graduate high school.  This is especially true for girls.

Children in Quiverfull are medically neglected.  Many children are born at home.  If there is a midwife involved, she may be unlicensed. Licensing and training depends on state statute so many midwives are trained and licensed.  But there are those midwives and other medical practitioners who choose to operate outside the medical establishment. And with a heavy distrust of the government, many followers of Quiverfull will actively seek out medical assistance that is not regulated by any government agency.   Vaccines are seen as government intrusion so many parents refuse to vaccinate their children.  Or beliefs false information about vaccines.  Many children rarely see a doctor. Reasons include: lack of parental finances; government intrusion; doctors are typically mandatory reporters of abuse (depends on state law); belief that sickness is merely uncompressed sin and so the child needs to repent and get right with God; the belief that any sickness can be cured by prayer.

Children raised in Quiverfull suffer the most and are given the least amount of help and support.  They may live in an unhealthy home due to abuse, neglect, inadequate shelter, inadequate food, inadequate clothing, and inadequate resources and support. 
These children are victims.  They spend many of their adult years healing from the abuse they suffered, correcting their education deficits, and shedding false and dangerous beliefs and behaviors.

Mental Consequences of Spanking

After my post last week on anger and rage, I thought about how I think about what I wrote about how I couldn’t have to do something but others could.  I mentioned, I believe, that I believed that I had to be a stay-at-home mother and never work outside the home while other women who could be mothers and work.  I have always believed that there were special rules just for me and that I was always in danger of breaking them.  This dichotomy of one set of rules for me and a different set of rules for everyone else plus the spanking and the heavy handed punishment towards me and the lighter to non-existent punishments my sisters received shaped my thinking processes.  I’m not sure if I’m going to explain this very well so please bear with me.

In anthropology and in sociology there is the concept of us-vs.-them.  Us-vs.-them is the idea that one group is pitted against another for survival or in anthropology/sociology, one group holds another group’s differences to be so anathema to the first group’s beliefs that the second group has to be discriminated against or even eliminated.  This us-vs.-them mentality is also apparent in Michael Pearl’s child rearing manuals such as To Train Up a Child and his and his wife’s website No Greater Joy.  He argues that a parent is in a battle against the child’s will hence the us-vs.-them where the child is the “them” while the parent is the “us.”  This mentality is dangerous and damaging to not only the child but to the parent as well.  While I mention Pearl and his work, this isn’t a post about his work and my mother, to my knowledge, has never heard or read anything by Michael Pearl.  However, this mentality of us-vs.-them still exists in spanking and other means of corporal punishment.

When a child learns that it is okay to hit as long as you are an adult i.e. spanking, it sets up the foundation for this us.-vs.-them thinking.  A child learns that as long as he/she is bigger and stronger that it is okay to hit/punish while it is wrong (read “bad”) for a child to do any of these things.  A child become angry but has to hide that anger because a child isn’t allowed to feel or show his/her anger while it is okay for a parent to show anger and to even use that anger as a means of expression.  Beyond the us-vs.-them mentality, the child learns to split his/her thinking especially if that child is the main object of punishment, that is, the parents punish one child more or blame one child more than the others.  The child learns that she must be bad and unlovable and to live by a special set of rules just for her.  Add in a heavy dose of religion especially saying things like, “Bad girls like you go to Hell,” or “Godly girls know how to be good girls,” or “I have to beat the sin out of you,” then it gets really bad.  The child learns that not only does mom and dad not love them very much but that God is out to get them as well.  There is nowhere safe for them.  They are afraid almost all the time.  They realize they have to live by one set of rules otherwise mom and dad and God will be upset.  They learn that other children are more special and more loved than they are.  They learn that they are at the bottom of the heap and that the good things that happen to other people will never happen to them.  They believe that they are so bad that nothing good can happen to them or will happen to them.  They learn that the only thing that will happen to them is being punished.  They come to believe that they deserve that punishment or the very least learn to accept that they can do nothing to stop the spanking.

Growing up like this and seeing no way to change things leads to what psychology calls learned helplessness.  Learned helpless is the condition of a human person or an animal in which it has learned to behave helplessly, even when the opportunity is restored for it to help itself by avoiding an unpleasant or harmful circumstance to which it has been subjected (Wikipedia).  When a child has learned to suppress their feelings and to suppress any hope of things changing though the situation (spanking) later changes they have learned to be helpless.  This learned helplessness also plays into the changed/split thinking.  A child learns that not only are there special rules that she has to follow she also learns that nothing she does will prevent her from being spanked and while she tried her hardest to follow the rules perfectly she realizes that nothing will change.  After a while, she won’t try to change and she definitely won’t try to leave because she believes (without evidence to the contrary especially if she is sheltered and/or has limited contact with the outside world) that it is the same everywhere.  When the situation does change, that is the parents stop spanking because they are tired of it or they realize that yelling and screaming and just threatening spanking works just as well, the child won’t resist because she doesn’t know how to any more.  Yet, this is what Michael Pearl and even parents who don’t follow his teachings want: submissive children who obey.  Except it really isn’t obedience, it’s fear.  Actually, more like terrified.

What am I getting at?  While I’m not sure I explained the split/double thinking very well, I believe I did show that thinking does change when one spanks. We know that a child that was spanked and had to repress their anger and rage at being spanked learned that hitting was okay as long as an adult does it.  So when that child grows up they take the anger and rage they couldn’t show and couldn’t feel as a child and possibly take it out on their children.  They may justify this spanking as necessary discipline or even as commanded by the Bible.

In my case, this split thinking let me to believe that others could have and do things I wasn’t allowed to.  That I was cut off because of my badness.  That others could have things but I couldn’t because they were good and lovable and liked by God.  I was just a bad girl and that I needed to keep up this kind of thinking otherwise I wasn’t being good and holy enough even though I was bad (how’s that for a contradiction?).  I had to keep thinking that I was a bad person, that I was totally unlovable, I was completely unworthy of help or respect or of anything, that nobody could want me around.  That this kinds of thinking was good.  That I had to keep punishing myself otherwise I really was so bad that I deserve to go to Hell this very minute.  And my mother loved to reinforce this kind of thinking, saying things like “bad girls like you go to hell;”  “you’re too slow;” “why can’t you be more like your sisters?” “you’re too fat;”  “you’ll never amount to anything.”  This kind of thinking and belief is very unhealthy.  And you wonder why I have depression.  I tried not to have dreams because I believed I couldn’t achieve them.  I repressed my feelings and hopes to make other people happy.  I did things I regret believing they would make things better not realizing that they wouldn’t even touch the symptoms let alone the problem.  I forgot my childhood so that I wouldn’t have to deal with the abuse and anger and the fact that my mother just couldn’t be the mother I needed.  I squashed “me” because I didn’t know the real me and thought that if I did everything others wanted then I would be a “good me” rather than a “bad me.”  I denied who I was because I believed that the me I was told I was wasn’t good enough or smart enough or strong enough or pretty enough or athletic enough or Catholic enough.

I had a hard time  now because now I know this kind of thinking is wrong.  Really wrong.  Some people might consider this negativity very holy, actually, I know there are people who think this kind of negative thinking is holy but it isn’t.  It’s a sin.  God doesn’t make junk and He is the only one that will love us.  People put conditions on love.  God doesn’t.  If God is love, and He is, then He can’t put conditions on himself.  He doesn’t expect us to be perfect before we come to him.  We are to come as we are: broken, afraid, unloved, worthless, useless, sinner.  He doesn’t place unrealistic expectations on us and then punish us for not meeting them.  He has no desire to crush us into little pieces.  Only people want to do that.

Now I have no idea if what I wrote is what I really meant to write (considering I wrote about a four page essay in about 45 minutes) but it is what it is.  I’m just trying to work on my own depression and this was something I believed effected it.

 

Anger, Rage, and Abuse

This post at Why Not Train a Child? really highlights some of the issues I have today.  The anger that I was not allowed to acknowledge or express when I was a child when my mother spanked me usually for something I didn’t do (my mother just preferred to spank me).

I was not allowed to be angry.  Anger was bad.  Only Mommy could be angry and when Mommy got angry I was in deep trouble.  When Mommy was angry, I was scared.  Even when Mommy wasn’t angry, I was scared because I didn’t know what would set her off.  It didn’t matter if I did or didn’t do something, if one of my sisters did something, I was the one that got in trouble, got screamed and yelled at, got spanked.  I was the Bad Girl.  I couldn’t do anything right and Mommy didn’t love me when I was bad.  I was almost always bad.  Bad Girls like me go to Hell.

Now I have a lot of anger and rage that boils under the surface and it wants out.  But I’m not allowed to be angry or have rage.  As a woman, we are taught that we are to be nice and happy and cheerful and never feel anything bad.  As a victim of abuse, I was taught that my anger was bad.  That my feelings were bad.  That I was bad.  When I was being abused, I didn’t know that I was being abused.  I thought everyone went through the same thing.  Everyone got yelled and screamed and spanked by their mother.

Now I know I have anger and rage and it sits there.  Sometimes it’s pretty quiet and I don’t have to worry about it coming out.  Then there are other times (like reading garbage by traddies) that it just wants to burst out and beat the crap out of somebody.  But I’m not allowed to have anger or emotions.  Feelings are bad.  Other people can have them.  I can’t.  I have to hide, squash the anger and the rage and deny it’s existence if I want to be even remotely acceptable as a person.  Other people are allowed to feel and express anger.  I am not.  I am expected to keep quite and be nice and happy.  But I can’t.  I just want to pound the stuffing out of something.  I feel like if I don’t get the anger and rage out then it will consume me, that I’ll end up in jail (not because of what I did but because of me) or locked up in a mental hospital because I am not socially acceptable to my family (which I already am not) or to society (which I pretty much am not anyways).  I feel like there are rules and expectations and freedoms for everyone and that those rules and expectations and freedoms are different or are not allowed for me at all.  Other people get to have fun and have friends and be loved.  I am not allowed to have fun or have friends or be loved.  I am not worthy of those things.  I am BAD.  Therefore, I must be so horrible that a whole set of rules apply just to me.  I am not allowed to have anger while everyone else is.  They are allowed to express their anger and there are not consequences while I am not allowed to have anger at all and if I showed that anger in anyway or even just felt it then I would need to be harshly punished.  Remember, I am BAD.  I deserve to be punished.

That mentality led me to doing some very harsh things to myself because I believed that if I was punished enough then everything would be alright, that I would be good enough, that I would be finally lovable, that I would be worthy, that I wouldn’t be arrested and thrown in jail for the rest of my life (still not sure where this came from but it was a major fear for many years; I still get anxious any time I see a police car even though I have never committed a crime and have had mostly positive interactions with the police).  I am not the only one.  I also call myself names, hit myself in the thighs ( I didn’t want anybody to see or know how bad I really was).  While I wasn’t raised in a patriarchal/quiverful/fundamentalist/traditionalist household I was raised in a household that had a mother that believed in corporal punishment and kept a paddle in the kitchen in open view and was very willing to use it. I felt by punishing myself I could stop my mother from punishing and abusing me.  Granted, a lot of what I did I didn’t do until I was in my teens.

I remember once (I don’t remember what I did) that I believed I had been so bad that I couldn’t sleep in my own bed but rather had to sleep on the floor in the downstairs bathroom (which had a shower stall, a toilet and sink so it was quite small and it was off the laundry room).  I remember being in tears not wanting to be sleeping in the bathroom but knowing that I had to sleep there because I was so bad.  I was in there for some time.  I even lay on the floor, so much in tears, thinking this was the only way to make things better.  Eventually, I left the bathroom and slept in my own bed.  The thing is, nobody knew what I had done.  It was the middle of the night and everyone but I was asleep.  I didn’t know that at the time I was depressed.  I just thought I was worthless and needed to be punished.

Even on my own as an adult I’ve felt that I needed to be punished.  I remember cooking one of those pasta dinners in a box.  I hadn’t been watching it and a lot of it stuck to the bottom of the pan and parts were burned.  I have to step back a moment and add that I struggle with my weight and how I view my body.  Even though I was never overweight till very recently, I was never a size 2 either.  I was healthy.  Yet my mother saw me as fat and called me fat and stupid to my face.  Even when I was a size 6 and had actually lost weight (when you live somewhere where you have to walk everywhere to do anything you lose weight) my mother still called me fat to my face.  She also didn’t like the fact that I was a vegetarian at that time (though it was fine when K decided to be a one) Well, I saw that burned food and while regular people would probably throw it out and/or salvaged the part that wasn’t burned, I decided that since I had screwed up so badly and that I couldn’t waste food because that would be a sin, that I had to eat the burned part and then starve myself to lose weight.  And yes, I am in tears at this point.  I was forced to eat a lot of food I didn’t like or couldn’t eat (there are foods due to texture or the digestive reaction that I have that I can’t eat certain food) growing up.  I think I ate three bites of it, in tears (which is what I am right now, in tears), and eventually threw it away even though I believed that I would be going to hell for wasting food like that.  As you can tell, I still have problems with food even as an adult who can cook and eat anything she wants.

At this point, I am going to have to stop.  I am getting too upset.  And I don’t want to make my depression worse.

Taking the Next Step

As I’ve posted on here before, I have depression.  Until yesterday, I  hadn’t done anything about it.  Saying I had depression was one thing.  It didn’t mean it was real.  It didn’t mean it was real or that I was really broken.  That I didn’t have all my shit together.

My depression was ephemeral, out of sight, out of mind in many ways.  I said the word depression to differentiate me from everybody else but I still wasn’t different.

Being mentally ill is not, was not something I wanted to be.

Aren’t most people who are depressed not really depressed at all but just not handling things very well?  I’ve heard that, read that.

Heard that people with depression or any mental illness aren’t really sick, they’re just looking for attention.

Mental illness is complete poppycock and totally made up.

If you have a mental illness, you really have unconfessed mortal sin, most likely unconfessed sexual sin on your soul.

No one who is a real Christian has a mental illness.  Only unbelievers and atheists get mental illnesses since they don’t have Jesus as the center of their lives.

If I was just married, stayed at home, and hat kids I would be happier.

If I dressed like Mary and never had an education and let a man run my life, I wouldn’t be this way.

If I was best friends with my parents and called them every day I wouldn’t be depresses.

I’ve heard or read or thought pretty much all of that.  But that’s not true.  None of that is true.

I have depression.  I was abused.  These are facts.  These things are real and true for me and they impact my life.  So what if it makes me a bad Catholic?  So what if I don’t have my shit together?  So what if I’m not married?  These things wouldn’t cure my depression.  Dealing with the abuse and neglect caused by my mother that led to the depression I have now will treat it, not waving some magic wand and waving it all away like so many Christians/Catholics do.  They ignore mental illness or say it is all made up and put down, belittle, ignore, and down right abuse those who have mental illnesses.  WHY?  Because they feel and believe their opinion that mental illness is against the Catholic faith is held by the Church and has to be enforced by them.

So if I get kicked out of my parish because of my depression, it’s because people refuse to understand that people are broken and hurt and that that burt and brokenness was caused by supposedly good and faithful Catholics and supposedly good and caring parents.

I took the first step and got help.  I now have medication.  I will get better even if it means I have to lose my job and my parish. I am important and I need to take care of myself.  I don’t care if people think that I am being selfish and unCatholic and disobeying the Church by not praying the Rosary fifty times a day as a magic cure.  I am tired of thinking of myself as a damned worthless, useless, unlovable person just because I am a woman, because I heard that growing up, and that that’s what I am supposed to tell myself to be considered a “good Catholic woman.”

I am taking care of me and I don’t give a shit what the world thinks about.  Remember, I am getting in touch with my inner bitch and she wants me to take care of myself and to love me for who I am.

The next step is to get counseling.

Depression Sucks

As the title says, depression sucks.  I’m stuck in a spiral, out of control, everything is getting worse world where no one even notices that I’m hurting or refuses to acknowledge it or want me to hide everything I feel because making them feel bad is the unforgivable sin.

I’m too fat.  Jeans I only bought two months ago have become too small.  I seem to gain weight even though I don’t eat bad food full of sugar.

I’m so bad that I deserve to go to Hell just like my mother and the traditionalists always say.  I starting to really believe it.  I must not be lovable or likable and I certainly don’t have any talents or gifts.  I’m just a useless, worthless, waste of space that deserves to die.  People would be much happier if I was gone.   I’m not even a person.  I don;t matter.  No one notices or cares if I’m here or not.  People say God does but it He cares about everyone so I’m not even a blip on the radar.  People say they at I’m doing this for attention, that I stay this way because I like being a victim.  No I fucking to do not want to be this way.

I want to be loved,  I want to be good at something.  I want to be a person.  I want to be cared for.  I want to be noticed and remember.  I want to go to Heaven not be damned to Hell.  I want to be special.  I want to be the go to person.  I want to be perfect.  I want to be more than a stupid mental illness. I want not to cry anymore.  I want to have actual dreams that actually come true rather than having to squash them in order to make everyone else happy or because I always make bad decisions.  I want to make good decisions.  I want to be thin.  I want to be pretty instead of the real ugly idiot that I am.  I want to be more.  I don’t want to have to settle for scraps.  I want to be free.  I don’t want to be like my mother.  I want to be me whoever that is.  I want to be a real woman not the fake woman everyone else wants me to be.  I don’t want to be the boy my parents wanted and so when they were disappointed that I wasn’t they abused and neglected me.  I don’t want to be abused or hurt.  I want to be accepted for who I am.  I want traditionalists to shut up and get lost.  I want to be something.  I want to be a federal agent.  I want people to take me seriously.  I want people to stop ignoring me.  I want people to acknowledge that a single woman is not a heresy or bad person or a failure or not a person because she isn’t married or has kids or what not.  I don’t want to keep eating emotionally.  I don’t want to be fat.  I want to be real.

 

 

 

The Past

I don’t think I’ve mentioned it here but I am a survivor of abuse.  Emotional/psychological and verbal abuse.  Not much physical abuse and to my knowledge, not sexual abuse thought there was abuse by my mother that could be considered if not sexual abuse then boundary abuse.  And yes, my mother was my abuser.  That went on for nearly the first twenty years of my life.

Then I went off to college at 18 while still carrying all that baggage/garbage, etc.  It wasn’t until I was 21 that I was able to start drawing lines and when I was 22 realize my parents didn’t care all that much about me.  My mother was abusive, my dad neglectful.  And I thought that this was all normal.

It wasn’t until I was forced into counseling my senior year of college (I had gone to my advisor to get an extension for a paper and was in tears because I was so exhausted but she thought I was depressed and made me make an appointment with the counseling center) that I had someone outside the situation actually say what happened to me was abuse and neglect.  I tried to say that to people while in the last year or so of high school but no one believed me.  From hearing things like I must be making things up to my parents weren’t really like that I doubted what really happened to me and even believed that I was making it up.  There are still times I think I made up what happened to me and then I remind myself that, no, it really happened.  Why would I be as messed up as I am if I hadn’t been abused?

I recently read a book about daughters and their mothers.  I really shouldn’t have read past the first few pages and returned it immediately to the library.  It was the absolutely the worst book to read.  This women advocates that all women and I mean all women need to be best friends with their mothers regardless of how their mothers treated them in the past and that the only friendship a women needs in one with her mother.  Actually, the author advocates that the only relationship a women needs is the friendship she has with her mother and that her mother should be the center of her universe.  That a women being a mother, a wife, a sister, a friend to other people is considered unimportant and even blasphemous to this whole mother-daughter friendship the author advocates.  That’s such a load of BS it isn’t even funny.  There are many of us that can’t even have a civil relationship with our mothers let alone a mother-daughter relationship and a friendship is completely out of the questions.  Yet this author can’t see that.  It upset me to read the book and I really shouldn’t have read it.

But this mentality hurts because I’m also getting it from a supervisor at work.  Now, this supervisor at work doesn’t know that I was abused and I’m not going to tell her.  But she can’t conceive that parents might abuse their children and that those children can’t have anything to do with those abusers as adults as a means of protecting themselves from getting hurt.  My supervisor lives in a very unrealistic and a very self-selective world that’s definitely out of touch with reality.  She gets along great with her mother but then her mother loved her.  My mother wasn’t capable of loving me.

Another effect of my mother’s abuse (from all her screaming) is that I don’t handle loud noises really well.  If I’m aware that there is going to be loud noise, I can prepare myself to handle it but there are times when that’s just not possible.  Part of my job in security deals with responding to alarms (there’s actually more to alarms to than that but that’s all I can get into).  Many of these alarms are loud and extremely obnoxious.  Enough, even after my time working there, the sound stresses me out.  A lot.  I cringe and want to run away which isn’t possible.

The cringing and running away when I feel I really can’t also happens with regards to personal space.  If I feel someone is sitting too close to me (which has happened a lot at Mass recently) I start to cry and want to run away but have this overwhelming feeling that I just have to stay there and let the bad things happen, that I have to let the hurt happen.  Because leaving and running away is not an option.  It is for everyone else but not for me.  I can understand how screwed up that is but that’s what’s going through my mind when someone sits so close that it feels like they are sitting in my lap and I can’t move and that this person is going to hurt me and I have to keep silent and let it happen.

So this has been a bad week for me.

A Declaration

Yes, at 4:40 in the morning.  Well, it is what time it is here.

I am a feminist.  There.  I said it.  And being a feminist is a good thing.  However, there are forms of feminism that are bad: radical feminism, any form that supports abortion and contraception and “sexual freedom” and bashing men and supports the homosexual lifestyle.  Those are anti-women and anti-men.

Abortion is anti-women because it’s about choosing to punish yourself and a baby for existing as a person and being able to give life and for being a women.  It’s also anti-men because it doesn’t care about men as fathers or as people.  Abortion is anti-people because it is indiscriminate in who it kills: girls, boys, gays, straight, the innocent, the potentially successful, the potentially disabled, etc.  Abortion basically says that you aren’t good enough to exist because you don’t fit in some arbitrary category about who and what a person is.  Abortion isn’t a choice or a freedom.  It’s a death sentence for the baby and for the mother.  It puts the mother in a continuous cycle of sexual abuse and prostitution.  A women who uses abortion to “get rid of a problem” abuses herself.  No woman is free when they get an abortion.  NO woman is free when they have sex with anybody outside of marriage.  They are abusing themselves and selling themselves as prostitutes that aren’t getting paid to have sex.

Bashing men also bashes women.  Men can’t exist without women and women can’t exist without men.  It’s biologically impossible.  If there was only one sex, then they wouldn’t be women or men.  There would be no concept of male or female, man or women.  The words and concepts wouldn’t exist in our language because there would be no need for them.  While I’m certain there are people who would love to eliminate such words, it’s impossible and entirely impractical.   It just wouldn’t work.  We need men and women and we need them to be different.  Yes, there are people who are trying to do with mother and father and what they mean but they will fail.  Not only do we need them, to eliminate them would eliminate what makes humans unique.  Actually, it goes beyond that.  It would destroy society.  Society as a whole needs mothers and fathers and men and women.

I believe in equal pay for equal work.  Now, it has gotten better but there’s always room for improvement.  There is also room for improvement in how people are compensated for their work and how work is valued.  Value shouldn’t be based entirely on monetary value but on what that person brings to the company or whatnot and not how much money they can make for the company at the expense of that individual’s health and personal relationships.

I believe rape, abuse be it sexual, physical, emotional, spiritual, verbal, psychological, or mental and neglect are crimes against people regardless of gender, age, sexual orientation, creed, ethnicity, etc. and should be prosecuted as such.  A spouse has no right to rape their spouse or beat them because they are married or to verbally abuse them because they think they can.  Parents should abuse their children nor should children abuse their parents.  A gay partner can’t beat their partner and get away with it.  It’s a crime against a person.  While I have problems with the homosexual lifestyle, they are still people who should be treated with respect and crimes against them should be investigated and prosecuted.

I believe a woman has the right to choose what she wants to do with her life.  If she wants to be a wife and mother and work, I support that.  If a woman wants be a wife and mother and be a stay at home mom, I support that too.  If a woman wants to work but stay permanently single, I support that as well.  If a woman believes she is called to the religious life and chooses to follow that, I support that as well.  I don’t support people who dictate how other people should live.  I have no right to tell Woman A or even Man A what to do with their lives.  I can’t make them work in a particular field or make them get married and no one else should either.  They can seek advice and counsel from people they trust but should make their own choices about their life.  And I will defend a women’s right to determine her own life.

I believe women are the biggest oppressors of women.  They are the ones who watch others like a hawk and talk about people behind their back and pass judgement on them because they don’t live exactly as they do.  If a woman wants to dress like a Goth (does anybody still dress like a Goth anymore?), as long as she dresses modestly (this is predicated on her and the society she lives in) then she can dress like a goth.  Or a punk.  Or in jeans and a t-shirt.  Or dresses.  Or formal suits.  No one can dictate what she wears unless she works in a particular industry that requires a uniform for work (even the typical office has a “uniform” for how to dress).  Women are the biggest believers about the lies of women: that they are weak, inferior, support things that hurt women, uneducable, shouldn’t be allowed to work, shouldn’t be allowed to receive a college/university degree, that the only thing a women can do is get married and have children and stay at home, that women who don’t revolve their lives around men have something wrong them or are lesbians.

I believe people are individuals with their own unique life experiences. No one is automaton and people shouldn’t make people into clones of themselves just because it makes their lives easier or because they think they have the power to do so.

Now there are people who are going to have a problem with me, a Catholic, being a feminist.  Yet all that I posted doesn’t contradict anything the Catholic Church teaches.  Being a feminist isn’t anti-Catholic.  It’s pro-humanity.  The Catholic Church was the first feminist force in the world.  Now there were people in the Church, but not the Church Herself, that advocated beliefs and practices that were anti-women but they weren’t the Church.  They were sinners who got tangled up in the details and pushing their own agendas rather than focusing on Jesus.  Jesus is very pro-women as demonstrated in the Gospels.

Let the tomato and lemon throwing commence.


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