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Coconut Flan

Real Life Fundie Encounters: Part 5

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Red Hair, Black Dress

Is she planning to continue teaching after the baby is born, or resign and be a SAHM?

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EowynW
34 minutes ago, Red Hair, Black Dress said:

Is she planning to continue teaching after the baby is born, or resign and be a SAHM?

She's going to be a SAHM after the baby is born. She came from a fundie family that insisted on a college education for every kid so she's been a teacher for several years. But she's always just wanted to do the fundie mom of many thing. 

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Bethella
6 hours ago, Briefly said:

I was driving behind an 18-wheeler today that was Samaritan Health, is that the same Samaritan we call Scamaritan?  I don't remember the exact wording on the side of the truck, I was driving so I couldn't really take time to read it, but it was something that made me think it was health screening that come to the patient.  I've never seen that one before.

I don't think so, Scamaritan is Samaritan Ministries. There are other health organizations that use the Samaritan name including Samaritan Health Services in Oregon, Samaritan Healthcare in Washington and Samaritan Health Systems in New York.

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BlackberryGirl

Fundies in the wild. 

I’ve mentioned before we live in an area with lots of Amish and Mennonites. Usually I don’t even notice them, they are so common.Yesterday I was in Walmart and ran Into a Mennonite family in the bread aisle. The mom was wearing the usual light dress and head covering, dad was wearing usual polyester slacks, but the kids looked odd, like Rod kids, multi layers, strange dresses.

They all were grabbing loaves of bread, dropping them, clutching the loaves to their bosoms.. just behaving weirdly.strangely, they were all grubby, which is unusual for Mennonites, who usually fresh and clean as springtime. 

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jjmennonite

Just found out that my 22 year old nephew and his wife are expecting a baby. I guess they are fundy lite, wear normal clothes, and actually were having sex before they were married. But they could not just move in together like normal people, and continue to use birth control, because Jesus.

He is a retail manager and she has some child care education. At least they’re in Canada, with health care. Creepy creepy to think of another baby being born into fundamentalism, to such young, ill equipped parents. 

I’m sure my nephew will be divorced pretty soon, and maybe my sister, the grandma, will get to see the kid every second weekend. Her sperm donor (nephew’s father) is a horrid pig who lives in the Ukraine, with his wife, because he could no longer charm any Canadian women into putting up with his abuse. He was able to get my sister to move across the country and make babies with him, 27 years ago, and support them all, because we were brought up to be submissive and making babies is our purpose. 

 

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EowynW

Fundie friend logic: Can't afford to go to the dr because Scamaritan doesn't pay for it, yet happily planning to get pregnant in the spring. 

What the hell. Watching fundie family and friends make these stupid decisions is SO DAMN HARD. 

There was a stretch of time where that I clearly remember, we were so poor that my Mom had to wear hand me down underwear and bras. She couldn't afford pads for her terrible periods and bled on rags. They didn't use government assistance. Yet it "all turned out well because God provided and He will provide for you too." 

 

In some better news, my Mom is on meds now for anxiety and depression. I have known for years she needed help. She now recognizes sometime our bodies need help. Though she still refuses to see what part being fundie & genetics have played into it, lol. And refuses to say it's a mental problem. She says it's only a whole body sickness.  🙄 I know we have family history of anxiety. And we are going to get my sister to go see a dr and get on anxiety meds, even though we might have to pay for it ourselves. My sister has suffered for years. Since childhood. Part of it is the fundie hellfire, brimstone, authoritarian God  religious trauma and part of it is her nature, but this is the first step towards healing for her and I could just sit down and cry for relief. She still needs therapy but one step at a time. 

Edited by EowynW
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Red Hair, Black Dress

@EowynW {{{{{ Hugs to you }}}}}}}   I'm hopeful that your mother and sister getting help is the first step for them moving out of their narrow fundie world. I know you'll keep encouraging them. It's baby steps for them, but very important baby steps.

I'm so sorry that your family had to go through a period of such extreme financial circumstances.   I know that your mother believes that since everything worked out sort of OK for her, it will for everyone else. But seriously, she cannot want her children to go through what she went through? Perhaps you could have that conversation with her.  Does she want you to wear hand me down underwear and use rags for your period? I suppose you could say God provided because the rags were there to use, but I seriously doubt that was God's plan for your mother. 

I have never understood the fundie anti public assistance stance.  Do they understand that the money comes from their taxes?

Edited by Red Hair, Black Dress

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smittykins

IME, many do; I’ve heard some people bitch about, for example, Their Tax Dollars™️ going to support unwed teen mothers.

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EowynW

HAHAHA I had completely forgotten that this is still an issue with hardcore fundies. 

IMG_9223.PNG

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WhatWouldJohnCrichtonDo?

@EowynW--Well, there is a quiz on Homeschoolers Anonymous that tends to agree with that. ;) 

https://homeschoolersanonymous.org/2014/04/12/50-shades-of-grey-or-contemporary-christian-music-lyrics-a-quiz/

Edited by WhatWouldJohnCrichtonDo?
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Briefly

I have noticed that the younger women fundies are not as friendly as the older women.  Not always, but it seems like usually the older women are nicer.  Like the one yesterday at Joanns Fabrics that gave me a coupon that she wouldn't be using, just so it would not go to waste and I think she just wanted to be nice.  She was talking to several other customers who were in line with her, also.  Just a general observation.

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EowynW
4 hours ago, Briefly said:

I have noticed that the younger women fundies are not as friendly as the older women.  Not always, but it seems like usually the older women are nicer.  Like the one yesterday at Joanns Fabrics that gave me a coupon that she wouldn't be using, just so it would not go to waste and I think she just wanted to be nice.  She was talking to several other customers who were in line with her, also.  Just a general observation.

YES!! There were so many lovely older women in my former fundie church. I miss them. 

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EowynW

A fundie acquaintance of mine was talking on Facebook about his wife giving birth and Israel Wayne pops up. Israel has atleast ten kids now and he said if a man can't respect a woman who is willing to go through that to bring his child into the world, "he be messed up." I found it sadly amusing, because in Israel's patriarchal world, that's about the only respect a woman will get. 

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Aine
14 hours ago, EowynW said:

A fundie acquaintance of mine was talking on Facebook about his wife giving birth and Israel Wayne pops up. Israel has atleast ten kids now and he said if a man can't respect a woman who is willing to go through that to bring his child into the world, "he be messed up." I found it sadly amusing, because in Israel's patriarchal world, that's about the only respect a woman will get. 

It's sad but I know plenty of men (although not the kind I'd call my close friends but some are married to close friends) who have very little empathy or understanding when it comes to everything a woman does or can go through during pregnancy, childbirth, and in the post-natal period. I also have husbands of friends down here in the South who actually are totally capable of the empathy and everything else and are horrified when they learn and begin to understand but their sex-ed, child development, and understanding of women's bodies and things because had no idea about so many things and took many missteps as they and their wives going through it tried to fill in the blanks of their education.

The "keep sweet" mentality of women isn't confined to fundies, especially in the Deep South. If you are a woman in the South, the chances are that you'll be surrounded by lots of Christians (not necessarily fundie) and you'll likely be one yourself. In my state, you also will have had abstinence-only education because that is the law. You are also expected to never complain about your child because they are "a blessing" and a "joy" and it being hard or difficult is not being sufficiently "grateful".

I think I've shared stories on here before about 9-11 year olds that I worked with being distraught that they thought they were pregnant because they were jumping on a trampoline with friends and their hand brushed over the crotch of a boy accidentally. The school counsellor I was consulting with in this case could not legally tell the child and other children with similarly insane worries that defied science that they were categorically not pregnant. The parents had to be contacted and she could only tell them the truth and absolve their worries with parental permission or leave it to the parents.

All of it piled on top of one another makes it really hard for even someone raised in this environment, like my best friend here, who is Christian and so is her husband (but not fundie) and has very much worked towards her own opinions, and so has her husband, and also both of them together since I've known her (to the point her 1 yr old son has the 'Nevertheless, She Persisted' kids book and the RBG one and many more). She is in doctoral program in the health sciences. She went through the worst pregnancy, she had a traumatic birth (baby born blue after typical obstetrics in the South doing all sorts of interventions that statistically are associated with poor outcomes, especially when done in a healthy mid-twenties woman) and had been too anxious beforehand to discuss birth plans with her doctor who also told her nothing beforehand, her baby was ripped out of her with full episiotomy/vacuums/forceps/hands and not a single person in that room communicated with her or her husband- not even before they stuck their hands inside her and ripped the baby from her. So with that trauma, and yes, actual damn birth trauma, she then took home a baby who everyone just said was 'colicky'. It took 10 months of diagnosed failure to thrive, 4 months before anyone realized his tongue tie was why breastfeeding was agony and he wasn't eating enough (she didn't personally know anyone who breastfed), and visits to specialists up to 4 hours drive away with a screaming baby and to the local pediatrician 3+ times a week before finally she wasn't treated as a 'hysterical mom' and he was diagnosed with multiple severe allergies of every day common foods that she was eating while breastfeeding.

She did not sleep more than 2 hours at a time for the first year. HE did not sleep more than 3. She slept less because she would stare at the night-vision baby monitor to make sure his chest was moving.

The biggest challenge of ALL of that though? Getting past this cultural thing that is everywhere but so especially PREVALENT in the South that a baby can be a 'blessing' but also crazy difficult and send you to insanity. That you feeling angry or sad or confused or even regretful for moments doesn't make you a bad mother and it doesn't mean your child and husband are better without you. That not being thankful every single second of every day or asking for help makes you a bad mother. That if your baby, that you'd give your life in a second for, isn't 'perfect' or isn't sleeping or is difficult...it doesn't mean you are doing something wrong.

Sorry- I just had a rant that I didn't know was brimming at the surface. I see this again and again and again in the culture here in my part of the country that I have never seen so widespread before. Moms feel guilt and aren't heard and women are belittled and not taken seriously by medical professionals everywhere. But this "keep sweet" culture does so so so much damage even when women have fought to be the first generation to go to college and educate themselves. They don't know what they don't know because no one laid that foundation for them.  And then they feel so much shame sometimes because they didn't know and now it isn't what they 'thought' and that makes them 'a failure'. 

It drives me mad and now I'm going to #endrant

Sorry, y'all.

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Don'tlikekoolaid

I knew fundy women who would get so frustrated with keeping sweet and getting no help from the useless husbands they would take it out on the kids.  Then they hate themselves for hitting their kids.  I’m so happy to be out of that circus of bastardized religion.

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EowynW

I have a fundie light acquaintance who has been widowed the past few years. She will often publicly air her grief at no grandchildren and lack other typical milestones other women her age are experiencing. Last year her son married a women with 3 kids. Granted, I don't know the dynamics of a blended family, but there was no acknowledgement on the part of this fundie lite lady about her son's new stepkids now being part of her family. She continued to complain (publicly on social media) that she had no grandchildren. Well now her son & dil are pregnant and NOW it's all "I FINALLY HAVE GRANDCHILD." 

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nastyhobbitses
On 3/13/2019 at 11:56 AM, EowynW said:

I have a fundie light acquaintance who has been widowed the past few years. She will often publicly air her grief at no grandchildren and lack other typical milestones other women her age are experiencing. Last year her son married a women with 3 kids. Granted, I don't know the dynamics of a blended family, but there was no acknowledgement on the part of this fundie lite lady about her son's new stepkids now being part of her family. She continued to complain (publicly on social media) that she had no grandchildren. Well now her son & dil are pregnant and NOW it's all "I FINALLY HAVE GRANDCHILD." 

If I were DIL, I'd counter with "nope, you will continue to have none. If you refuse to acknowledge ALL of our children as part of your family, you will have no relationship with any of them. You are a piss-poor grandmother and a nightmare of a mother-in-law. We will not be speaking to you again until you apologize for the pain you have caused OUR children and begin to treat them with the love and respect they deserve." 

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Red Hair, Black Dress

A friend of mine's mother has always maintained that any adopted grandchildren or grandchildren brought into a marriage are not "real" grandchildren and would never be treated as grandchildren in any way.  No birthday/Christmas gifts, cannot call her grandmother only Mrs X,  cannot claim to be siblings/cousins to other children in the family, cannot call the parent's siblings aunt and uncle, etc.

This woman's Will explicitly states that only biological grandchildren can inherit ( they have tons of money).  My friend knows this to be true because she was with her mother and the lawyer when her mother amended her Will after the husband died.

At the time my married friend had not produced grandchildren and there was still an unmarried older son and a son in college.  The lawyer tried to suggest to the woman this would make for a very awkward situation, but the woman held firm to her not "real" grandchildren statements.

Fortunately, this not an issue with any of the grandchildren as the woman has never changed her mind nor removed the hateful language from her Will.  

 

 

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Aine
On 3/13/2019 at 6:56 AM, EowynW said:

I have a fundie light acquaintance who has been widowed the past few years. She will often publicly air her grief at no grandchildren and lack other typical milestones other women her age are experiencing. Last year her son married a women with 3 kids. Granted, I don't know the dynamics of a blended family, but there was no acknowledgement on the part of this fundie lite lady about her son's new stepkids now being part of her family. She continued to complain (publicly on social media) that she had no grandchildren. Well now her son & dil are pregnant and NOW it's all "I FINALLY HAVE GRANDCHILD." 

I am family acquaintances with a family with a child who would be the equivalent of that woman's DIL's children. Our family friend married a man who was a foreign exchange student that was significantly older and moved overseas with him. He was horrifically abusive and it took until her second child was almost 2 to escape. Her older child was 6ish. She moved back with her parents and managed to go through all the legal awfulness to keep custody of the kids and then the ex didn't want anything to do with the kids once he lost that battle. She didn't want money from him but he just stopped even contacting them. 

She remarried to a wonderful man who took on both of her kids as his own but never forced himself on them as "Dad". But he was one of those people who took on all of the responsibilities of the kids (emotionally, physically, financially...and with plenty of love and patience) when he married a woman with two children. The older one clearly remembers her own father and she feels like even the term in the language of the country she was born in and in English is tainted by her memories of him and so doesn't want to call her stepfather that name. The younger one has no memory of her own father and started calling her stepfather 'Dad' when she was about 5.

When the younger daughter was 5ish, her mother and step-father had a son of their own. This is when it gets "fundie". The stepfather was from a fundie family in another state (with 9 siblings or something) and drifted away from religion and is now an atheist. Some of his family had come to visit them when they got married and they FaceTimed regularly, with his youngest stepchild/child featuring. When their son was about 6 months old, they went to visit his extended family in their home state. The younger daughter was so excited to meet all these people that were family of her Dad- the only Dad she had ever known, the man who had adopted her (she knew she wasn't his child biologically)- and when they got there, the grandparents doted over their biological grandson. He was like their 30th grandchild. They ignored their now-adopted grandchild mostly. 

The older step-daughter made the comment to me that she did everything she could to make sure her sister didn't see things like a chart with every grandchild's photo and birthdate (in order along the span of a year) on the wall because her little sister was not included. But she noticed and on returning, she said that her 'cousins' that she'd been so excited to meet had told her that she wasn't really their cousin and that her 'grandparents' overheard it and told her that it was true.

Good Christians, clearly.

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Briefly

@Aine, that is so sad!  Really awful and unexcusable.  I do have to say that when my brother married his second wife, she had two sons from her first marriage.  My parents pretty much immediately claimed them as their grandchildren.  No hesitation.  When that marriage went up in smoke, which honestly was not a surprise to anybody except possibly my brother, my parents were upset for my brother but also because they really cared about those children and knew that they would never see them again.

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danvillebelle
On 3/17/2019 at 11:56 AM, Red Hair, Black Dress said:

A friend of mine's mother has always maintained that any adopted grandchildren or grandchildren brought into a marriage are not "real" grandchildren and would never be treated as grandchildren in any way. 

This is so cold and cruel.  :(  

My paternal grandparents divorced when I was 7 and my grandmother remarried a year and half later.  The wonderful, kind man she married treated us all as his family from DAY ONE.  He did so much for us.  My brother and I went and spent a week with them every summer and he tried to plan fun things for us to do, bought us a badminton set, a basketball, took us to the pool every day, etc.  He put my alcoholic aunt through an expensive rehab.  Every 2-3 years he'd buy my grandmother a new car, and give us the old one.  He helped pay for my college.  He left my dad a sizable chunk of money in his will, that enabled my parents to finally buy a condo after renting all their adult lives.  I could go on and on.  He was FAR more of a grandfather to us than my actual paternal (alcoholic, selfish, asshole) grandfather could have ever hoped to be.  ❤️

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Jana814

My aunt’s step father was a wonderful person. He was always kind to me, my sister & my parents even though we had no biological connection to my aunt. He cut the Challah at my sister’s Bat Mitzvah (usually it’s an older male relative who dose it) and I had a few people say to me. “I didn’t know you had a grandfather”. I had to say he’s not our grandfather he’s our aunt’s step father. They were shocked because he did it in a loving way. 

Edited by Jana814

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Aine

The partners that have married into my paternal family in the past 10 years have been very similar to @Jana814's Aunt's step-father and to @danvillebelle's grandfather. I'm just going to call him that and stuff 'biological' or 'step', he sounds like the most loving and devoted grandfather anyone could ever wish for. 

My Uncle, my Dad, and my Auntie (my Uncle's ex-wife but she stayed very much in our family- she is our's) all have new partners/wives/husbands now and all three of them hit the jackpot. They took on our loud, loving, and various shades of crazy family right from the get-go. My new Uncle, and I do call him that, only became so when I was a teenager and he taught me to drive, never missed an awards ceremony, encouraged me, counseled me, taught me to do so many practical things in life and always made a point to spend time with me.

I had lived with my bio-Uncle and his wife (my Auntie) for chunks of my childhood and my Auntie is the closest thing I have to a mother. I moved back in with them a couple of times since they've been together and spend lots of time there when not living abroad and he took that on with no questions and love. If I was stressing about school or spending too much time inside on my computer, he'd tell me to get up, put on my boots, because I was going to help him do any myriad of jobs around the house and he is a great conversationalist so we'd chat and he'd show me how to do things. He made me feel like I was worth spending time with when I was at a very low point in my life. He did the same with his new step kids and now step grandchildren, even though they have a Dad that is a great guy and they adore. He managed to find his niche without ever seeming like he was "taking over" or trying too hard or trying to be their 'other Dad'.

My Uncle's new wife...they had an affair and both broke up their very unhappy marriages for each other and that took me a long time to forgive. I was very closed off from her for a long time and so were her now-stepkids. Despite that, my entire family counted her daughters as part of the family from the beginning and any feelings about all of the ugly things were never taken out on them and we were always civil to their mother. And she just...kept turning up? She wasn't full on, she didn't push, and my cousins and I especially made it hard for her sometimes. Not giving her too much, not taking conversations past the surface level, avoiding talking to her as much as possible and she knew it. A lot of women would have given up but not her. She and I have many common interests, she has an extreme devotion to 'family' (her own and the family of the man she loves) and her small extended family quickly became part of our family events (they are so awesome that it helped me at least consider that she might not be evil incarnate haha), and she remembered things I told her and remembered dates and would follow up about things that had happened. 

It took awhile but I consider her an Aunt now. She calls to check-in on me, something a lot of my family forget to do, she texts, she sends me my favorite candy or random things from my home country with a post-it saying, "Saw this at the shops and thought of you! Chucked it in the post before the other vultures get to it! Love you!" Simple things. She also went so far above what she needed to when my grandparents each died and were in semi-comatose states for the last weeks of their lives. She volunteered to do the overnight shift with them or keep someone else company for that so they could nap in the chair because everyone was so exhausted and drained. She played taxi back and forth from the airport in insane traffic for the majority of her days before and after each of their funerals and had a spreadsheet (very her) of when people were flying in and out, the airline, where they were staying etc etc. 

My Dad's partner is also amazing- to my brothers and I and to my extended family and her extended family took us in immediately. I met her mother for the first time and was hugged so enthusiastically and she told me to call her 'Yiayia' immediately (she is Greek) and led me off from my Dad and his partner into the kitchen because I had to taste test food for her. 

I am fortunate that one half of my family doesn't skimp on love- the more the merrier. Why make arbitrary boundaries? Why not soak up every bit of joy from every person (who isn't toxic) you are lucky enough to have life bring you? I think it's so sad to see it any other way.

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feministxtian

In our family we have steps/bio/love kids. There's a bunch of my sons' friends who still call me mama, who text me, all the time. Grandchildren? Bio and step. Doesn't matter, we're still Nona and Pappa to them all. I cannot WAIT to get my hands on the newest granddaughter, when she comes from Mongolia in May. Nona is already starting her Amazon list for doing up her room. In our family we love. Fiercely and always. Our family may be messy and loud and argumentative, but when push comes to shove, don't mess with the fam. 

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MamaJunebug

I came here to share dismay and instead found wonderful stories of family love! Thank you all!

 

But now, my dismay. 

A couple - friends of the ex’s - who I knew to be tee-totaling Baptists but otherwise very friendly and ageeeable, recently had a huge garage sale and I left almost $100 with them for very good stuff.  I was feeling so positive about how they seemed to be Respectfull of each other, and he in particular was not above doing humble, annoying tasks (like wrapping a set of dishes  for which I’d only paid five dollars) Without complaint. Very unlike my ex.

Day after the sale, as agreed, I called to see if a couple of larger things had sold. They had not, and the wife and I agreed on a price. I said something about her being the boss, and she said, suddenly very stern, “oh no. He is the boss. He IS the boss. “

 Saw them unexpectedly at a funeral yesterday, and he returned my smile of surprise with another stern look. Barely spoke to me. She followed along behind him, gave me a pleasant smile and said something innocuous, but boom they were gone. 

 It occurs to me, and sadly, that these people are definitely complementarians.   And that, try as they might, They can’t help but have negative feelings and opinions of me, as my ex is still their friend. And he’s a man.

As I started dictating this, it occurred to me that I don’t really need the things they’re holding for me. And I haven’t paid them yet (it’s an hours drive to where they are). Gosh, I kinda hate for them to have to take more money from an uppity woman!

Oh, FJ, love you so.  I may have just saved myself some money. Not to mention   saving myself the aggro of having to deal with people like that. 

I am a lousy liar, but maybe I could explain to them that the new man in my life* doesn’t approve of me buying those things...

~~~~~~~

*There’s no new man in my life! LOL

.

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