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Baker's Dozen daughter is engaged


terranova

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bakersdozenandapolloxiv.com/

Renee and her 17 (maybe 18?) year old daughter Adalia have been visiting Adalia's boyfriend in New Zealand and they got engaged while they were here.

Adalia and Ben met on a Teen Mission's International trip in 2011. Renee and her husband Chuck also met on a TMI trip and got married when Renee was very young.

I wish Adalia and Ben all the best but I do feel they're very young and can't know each other very well if they've only spent at most a few weeks in each other's company.

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Awww, I like Adalia! and Ben is cute! He's 19, working towards becoming a farrier, seems like a sweetie. They're sort of my pet fundies, mostly because I found them way before I found FJ. Not sure how I feel about Renee and Chuck, but I do like Adalia. Her name is pronounced way different than it's spelled, but I forget. Also, living somewhere other than her family's house (I assume she'll go to NZ?) might not be a bad idea. Less kids at least.

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Wow, I wasn't going to be surprised if that was what came of the NZ trip, but I didn't realize just how young Adalia and Ben are. Wow . . . I wish them the best. Still very, very young though.

ETA: She's 17, almost 18 (bakersdozenandapolloxiv.com/2013/03/01/friday-focus-adalia/)

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Awww, I like Adalia! and Ben is cute! He's 19, working towards becoming a farrier, seems like a sweetie. They're sort of my pet fundies, mostly because I found them way before I found FJ. Not sure how I feel about Renee and Chuck, but I do like Adalia. Her name is pronounced way different than it's spelled, but I forget. Also, living somewhere other than her family's house (I assume she'll go to NZ?) might not be a bad idea. Less kids at least.

I loved the blog too until I read that one of the Liberian kids ended up in a homeless shelter. Now I consider Renee and Chuck scum of the earth. It's pronounced Add-a-lee I believe.

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I loved the blog too until I read that one of the Liberian kids ended up in a homeless shelter. Now I consider Renee and Chuck scum of the earth. It's pronounced Add-a-lee I believe.

I've been reading the blog since before Apollo was born and I don't remember ever reading the bolded. Link?

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I find the lack of postings on her Liberian kids confusing. Either they don't want to be on the blog and she is respecting that, or they have (or have been) distanced from her biological kids for some reason. She does post that they are working, studying and living in another town, but little more than that.

I have never heard about anyone living in a homeless shelter though.

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I find the lack of postings on her Liberian kids confusing. Either they don't want to be on the blog and she is respecting that, or they have (or have been) distanced from her biological kids for some reason. She does post that they are working, studying and living in another town, but little more than that.

I have never heard about anyone living in a homeless shelter though.

I think it's both. The kids were older than they thought (so they had the right to have a say in what they wanted), I don't think they particularly meshed well with the large family praise jesus lifestyle, and I think she sort of let them have their space if they wanted, which I think is better than forcing them to be part of the family.

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I've been reading the blog since before Apollo was born and I don't remember ever reading the bolded. Link?

It wasn't on Renee's blog.

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Ezra was sent to live with Renee's friend. Her friend threw him out. Renee didn't take him back. He was sent to a homeless shelter. glimpseofpeace.blogspot.com/2012/03/homeless-by-choice-ezra.html He may have been nearing adulthood in age, but he had the mind of a child. That post makes me want to throw up.

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Ezra was sent to live with Renee's friend. Her friend threw him out. Renee didn't take him back. He was sent to a homeless shelter. glimpseofpeace.blogspot.com/2012/03/homeless-by-choice-ezra.html He may have been nearing adulthood in age, but he had the mind of a child. That post makes me want to throw up.

Thanks for the link theologygeek. I knew that Ezra was living with a friend of Renee but never knew she kicked him out. I must admit, due mostly to the pants wearing, decently educated girls, I never really thought of the family as fundie, just as people who love and are really vested in their children. But between not accepting their own child back into their home (because of his disobedience at the friends home?), this oh so early in their lives engagement, and the fact that (at least based on the engagement and other pictures of Adalia and BEN!) no kissing will be allowed until marriage, I am starting to see the light. That is not to say that I no longer see them as people who love and are vested in their children but it DEFINITELY gives me a new/different perspective on things.

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It gets worse. Fast forward 12 days later. The guidance counselor worked overtime and convinced Ezra to go to the Job Corps. The GUIDANCE COUNSELOR put him on the Job Corps bus. That is just pathetic that she was the only one who cared. Renee's friend briefly went to the guidance counselor's office and gave Ezra "a hug and a blessing." She also told him that he could visit any time. Visit? How the hell is he supposed to get on after he leaves the Job Corps when there are working families who can't even make ends meet? He has the mind of a child, and he is going to be able to get a job and pay rent and other bills? And where were the two people who ripped him out of his homeland that day when the guidance counselor put him on the bus? glimpseofpeace.blogspot.com/2012/03/new-chapter-ezra-job-corps.html It will be a miracle if this poor thing doesn't have abandonment issues after everything he has been through.

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Wow, that's interesting.

I can't imagine how difficult it must be for the Liberian children to adapt to life in the US, especially as adults, expected to get an education and a job and live a "normal" life.

I hope Renee and Chuck are playing an active part in the lives of ALL their kids, even if it's not evident on the blog. They do seem closest with Keziah and she pops up on the blog occasionally.

If Adalia comes to NZ with Ben, she will almost certainly live a very different life to her parents. I hope she can continue her midwifery training or even go into nursing.

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I thought the stuff with the Liberian kids seemed kind of odd, but before seeing the above had trusted that she was just respecting their privacy, nothing more involved. The real story's straight out of Child Catchers, and I have a feeling Renee knows it wouldn't reflect well on her if she told what was actually happening (and what's with the other blogger giving so many details and even a photo of his stuff outside the house? how humiliating).

I'm also shocked that someone can have a kid who needs to be in public high school at age 20 but doesn't legally have to do jack shit for them and can in fact send them elsewhere and let them get dumped at a homeless shelter.

ETA this quote from the link theologygeek posted that made me want to cry. Bolding mine:

Working overtime, Ezra's guidance counselor convinced Ezra not to let his opportunity at Job Corps pass him by. With her help, and a free bus ride sponsored by Job Corps, Ezra departed for a new beginning yesterday. She stayed with him at the depot until his bus arrived, and personally asked the driver to assist Ezra with the transfer in Mt. Vernon. He got on the bus holding his soccer ball like a teddy bear.

How can you have a kid who can't handle basic transit at age 20 and say "screw you, here's a homeless shelter"? :angry-banghead:

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That is not to say that I no longer see them as people who love and are vested in their children but it DEFINITELY gives me a new/different perspective on things.

I don't see how someone can love and be vested in their child, but let their special needs child go to a homeless shelter.

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I thought the stuff with the Liberian kids seemed kind of odd, but before seeing the above had trusted that she was just respecting their privacy, nothing more involved.

When other blog readers ask why they aren't ever mentioned, respecting their privacy as adults is the reason given. I feel duped.

I read a few other posts about Ezra and it seems like the family was very "Our way or the highway" as evidenced by this :

Ezra began diving as a freshman three years ago, as we 'forced' him to participate in high school athletics (or get a job).

and this

This year he is quite against his wishes enrolledin culinary arts classes at an out-of-district technical education facility, and manages a series of bus rides to get where he needs to go.

Its no wonder he chose the homeless shelter.

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Thanks for the link theologygeek. I knew that Ezra was living with a friend of Renee but never knew she kicked him out. I must admit, due mostly to the pants wearing, decently educated girls, I never really thought of the family as fundie, just as people who love and are really vested in their children. But between not accepting their own child back into their home (because of his disobedience at the friends home?), this oh so early in their lives engagement, and the fact that (at least based on the engagement and other pictures of Adalia and BEN!) no kissing will be allowed until marriage, I am starting to see the light. That is not to say that I no longer see them as people who love and are vested in their children but it DEFINITELY gives me a new/different perspective on things.

I don't know about that, they certainly look pretty cosy and kissy in some of the photos on both their facebook pages. Also, Renee has confirmed Adalia will be moving to NZ. I guess a doula is an easier profession to move with than a farrier.

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:( Poor Ezra, any reasons why they'd kick him out? Sounds like their beating around the insulated fundie bush instead of being frank with the explanation of why they gave him the boot.

I'm happy for Adalia but she'll have her eyes opened moving to another culture as a young bride. Be prepared for a level of homesickness that'll compass anything you've felt before..I know first hand.

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Renee posted answers to a lot of questions. They said they wanted her to wait until she was 18 and was done with her associates degree. She also said that she won't be blogging about his family or anything because it's not her place to do so. I will say, she's got a better grasp of boundaries in blogging than some other parents. Ben and Adalia are getting married in May apparently. Also she's probably going to work after they get married, so at least she gets to have a job, unlike some other fundie kids. For how religious they are (not celebrating Halloween and stuff) I feel like their kids at least get a good education and get to work and have fun.

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In the most recent NZ post, Adalia is riding a horse in jeans and a tank top. Bare arms. Atta girl! I like when religious girls get to wear normal clothing. It makes me feel a little happy inside. Idk why, I think it gives me hope for them? They're riding without helmets, which I don't love.

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I thought the stuff with the Liberian kids seemed kind of odd, but before seeing the above had trusted that she was just respecting their privacy, nothing more involved. The real story's straight out of Child Catchers, and I have a feeling Renee knows it wouldn't reflect well on her if she told what was actually happening (and what's with the other blogger giving so many details and even a photo of his stuff outside the house? how humiliating).

I'm also shocked that someone can have a kid who needs to be in public high school at age 20 but doesn't legally have to do jack shit for them and can in fact send them elsewhere and let them get dumped at a homeless shelter.

ETA this quote from the link theologygeek posted that made me want to cry. Bolding mine:

How can you have a kid who can't handle basic transit at age 20 and say "screw you, here's a homeless shelter"? :angry-banghead:

That made me actually cry. Screw this woman. Hope she recognizes that just adopting a child and then doing zero of the actual parenting makes her a scumbag who seems to have lost sight of what an actual Christian would do.

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I dropped off the map on fundie watch for a while, stopped reading all the blogs, this is the first thing I come back to! Wow.

Not a bad story as far as fundies go, but she really is so young. Of course I was young too, but not that young. I can't see myself being comfortable with my kids getting married at 18. (Then again, stranger things have happened -- my 12 year old is currently 3 weeks into a 2 month trip to Australia, staying with friends and surfing the Gold Coast, and I never imagined being okay with that just a year or two ago!)

I have to say the thing with the Liberian kids doesn't make me dislike the family. We obviously don't know and never will know the whole story, but there are some situations where love and care just is not enough, and for the safety and sanity of others in the home, someone needs to go.

Those kids have seen and experienced things no one sitting in our position can imagine. Those scars run deep. Love doesn't fix that. People who grow up in survival mode devote all their body and brain's resources toward just that - survival. That keeps you alive in a West African civil war. It doesn't serve you well in a relatively normal, if large, western family.

Think about military members, reporters, and humanitarian workers who wind up dealing with war. The vast majority of these people are healthy, well-adjusted adults who have two or more decades of decent families, good resources, at least a basic education, and relative stability behind them. A LOT of those who go into intense situations for just a year or less and come out the other side with major psychological damage and difficulty adjusting to civilian life again. Think about how many veterans end up homeless, in jail, or as just plain lost souls.

Now imagine all that and worse heaped on children. For years and years at a time. With none of that early-life stability to draw from, with no VA or support groups or therapy or even proper physical care. Even if their adoptive families sought it, they have few resources available to help them, because we as a society simply do not have any experience dealing with that brand of hell, let alone know how to properly treat the long-term damage caused by it.

Clearly this is all speculation in the Baker's Dozen case, but it's probably not far off from the reality. Children who experience long-term civil war, death or abandonment by one or both parents, ill-equipped care in orphanages, poverty, hunger, and abuse do not come out the other side without serious damage. They just don't.

Whether or not it was a good idea to adopt from Liberia in the first place is another matter. From their blog archive, it seems to me that they were well-intentioned but very, very naive and were not given a straight story by anyone involved in the adoption. Combine that with a previously (somewhat) stable program collapsing while they were in the middle of process, a lack of honesty or lack of available information on the children's real ages and challenges, and general naivety, and it's very easy to see how over their heads they found themselves.

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I do basically agree with your post, Lily, but if the child needs to be out of the house, that doesn't discontinue their responsibility to provide material care (shelter, day-to-day expenses, etc) to those kids, to save their arses when they're kicked out of a house for disobedience and end up homeless, and to physically show up when they get put on the frigging bus.

It gets worse. Fast forward 12 days later. The guidance counselor worked overtime and convinced Ezra to go to the Job Corps. The GUIDANCE COUNSELOR put him on the Job Corps bus. That is just pathetic that she was the only one who cared. Renee's friend briefly went to the guidance counselor's office and gave Ezra "a hug and a blessing." She also told him that he could visit any time. Visit? How the hell is he supposed to get on after he leaves the Job Corps when there are working families who can't even make ends meet? He has the mind of a child, and he is going to be able to get a job and pay rent and other bills? And where were the two people who ripped him out of his homeland that day when the guidance counselor put him on the bus? glimpseofpeace.blogspot.com/2012/03/new-chapter-ezra-job-corps.html It will be a miracle if this poor thing doesn't have abandonment issues after everything he has been through.

That's just... appalling.

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  • 3 weeks later...
I dropped off the map on fundie watch for a while, stopped reading all the blogs, this is the first thing I come back to! Wow.

Not a bad story as far as fundies go, but she really is so young. Of course I was young too, but not that young. I can't see myself being comfortable with my kids getting married at 18. (Then again, stranger things have happened -- my 12 year old is currently 3 weeks into a 2 month trip to Australia, staying with friends and surfing the Gold Coast, and I never imagined being okay with that just a year or two ago!)

I have to say the thing with the Liberian kids doesn't make me dislike the family. We obviously don't know and never will know the whole story, but there are some situations where love and care just is not enough, and for the safety and sanity of others in the home, someone needs to go.

Those kids have seen and experienced things no one sitting in our position can imagine. Those scars run deep. Love doesn't fix that. People who grow up in survival mode devote all their body and brain's resources toward just that - survival. That keeps you alive in a West African civil war. It doesn't serve you well in a relatively normal, if large, western family.

Think about military members, reporters, and humanitarian workers who wind up dealing with war. The vast majority of these people are healthy, well-adjusted adults who have two or more decades of decent families, good resources, at least a basic education, and relative stability behind them. A LOT of those who go into intense situations for just a year or less and come out the other side with major psychological damage and difficulty adjusting to civilian life again. Think about how many veterans end up homeless, in jail, or as just plain lost souls.

Now imagine all that and worse heaped on children. For years and years at a time. With none of that early-life stability to draw from, with no VA or support groups or therapy or even proper physical care. Even if their adoptive families sought it, they have few resources available to help them, because we as a society simply do not have any experience dealing with that brand of hell, let alone know how to properly treat the long-term damage caused by it.

Clearly this is all speculation in the Baker's Dozen case, but it's probably not far off from the reality. Children who experience long-term civil war, death or abandonment by one or both parents, ill-equipped care in orphanages, poverty, hunger, and abuse do not come out the other side without serious damage. They just don't.

Whether or not it was a good idea to adopt from Liberia in the first place is another matter. From their blog archive, it seems to me that they were well-intentioned but very, very naive and were not given a straight story by anyone involved in the adoption. Combine that with a previously (somewhat) stable program collapsing while they were in the middle of process, a lack of honesty or lack of available information on the children's real ages and challenges, and general naivety, and it's very easy to see how over their heads they found themselves.

They were ill equipped and naive, sure but I think they made a commitment to these children and they should have honored it rather than foisiting the kids off onto friends and job corps.

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What Lilah said. If you adopt, that is now your kid.

I do not have much time for the feelings of "naive" people who adopted from Liberia. So they did no research into what had happened in Liberia and what the kids they got might have experienced? Not even a little bit? They just believed everything they were told?

People who are stupid enough (and lazy and first-world enough) to think that getting a kid from a country which has experienced major and horrific civil war would be just fine and no problems would crop up don't deserve that child at all. I am sickened every time I hear about the neglect and abuse of children who have come from a third-world nation because they had mental and emotional issues which didn't fit into the parents' lifestyle. I really want to ask the parents what they were expecting.

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