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pook

Explaining Your Fundie Fascination to People You Know

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pook

From time to time this topic comes up in a number of forums, especially during periods of major fundie news like Joshgate, Tooloween, JRod everything etc.  So how do you guys explain your fundie testimony to the people you know in real life? Do you feel ridiculous?  I do because fundie culture is among other things so ludicrous yet I never feel ashamed, just a little silly.  Mr. Pook thinks that I am a loon for my fundie fascination.  In fact, when I bring up the Duggars he gets angry and leaves the room.  He calls it my "hate following" because he is of a much more conservative mentality and is uninterested in understanding how the toxic beliefs these fundies espouse have permeated mainstream society/politics and are truly harming people.  He does understand internet forum culture because he belongs to some and understands how much of a supportive community they can be.  What has been your experience?  Sis Pook

P.S. The oldest Pook thinks the stuff I show him is pretty hilarious, notably Doug Phillips various aliases such as Phil Douglas and (proud Mama moment) he found Ken Ham and Raymond Comfort on his own and we laugh about bananas and the flooding of the Arc Encounter park.

 

Edited by pook
riffles

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Kelsey

Only my spouse knows about my "hobby." He basically acts like it's some kind of fiction fandom. I would be embarrassed to tell anyone else 😂

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MayMay1123

i talked a bit about fj to my husband, and he's okay with it, as long as i never show him brohawk's weens ever again. 🤠 🌭 i have opened his eyes to the "dangers of fundamentalism" and we have had great discussions about things i've learned here. everyone else just looks at me weird and changes the subject

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Enraged
AliceInFundyland

My bff finds my anecdotes amusing.

My psych Rn approves of the social outlet.

My gentleman friend alternately is disturbed in the appropriate way, confused, rails on religion, or fails to contemplate why I am really disturbed about the impact on US. He's centrist and in Canada and doesn't get the Jesus factor.

(He does understand the forum in general. It's the fundamentalist problems that vary. Scientology and Mormons we do well with. Quiver full as concept was a what the fuck. Convincing him that these loons are one issue voters attempting to take over the country gets us a bit derailed.)

I never know. It is a 1/4.

And my other bestie I met through here and she isn't posting any more. But we communicate things via text like Nurie is engaged! Which is lovely.

Edited by AliceInFundyland

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anachronistic

I really wish I had someone in real life to talk about this stuff with!

My fascination is easy to explain to others, because I’m autistic, and autistic people often have somewhat obscure special interests. So my knowing enormous amounts about random people and cults is just another quirk. I’m very open about being autistic therefore I can be open about why I love learning about Harry Potter, baking, or any of my other interests. I think, however, like most of my interests, it has morphed over the years, converted if you will, from a special interest to a plain old interest. Some people like reading science fiction. I like reading fanfic and the family blogs of ultra conservative religious people.

It’s almost escapism for me - I share a country with most of these people yet we have such different lives they could be living on another continent or in another century. The fact that we speak the same language is astonishing. We don’t have similar values, families, religions, recreation, reading materials - yet when they post a letter they use the same postal service. If they didn’t physically and emotionally abuse and stunt so many of their offspring I might find it a wonderful example of America.

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Waffle Time
mango_fandango

Ooh @anachronistic you sound so like me! Autistic, Harry Potter, fundies, baking...

I mainly mention “the American forum where we discuss religious weirdos” :pb_lol: just as something I do. 

I did once, apropos of nothing, show my brother the first pink weeny gravy photo. No context or anything. He just shook his head and said “that’s some fucked up shit”. He doesn’t even know the half of it! 

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ColeJo

My sister doesn't mind me talking about my fundie fascination. Heck, she even took a class on fundamentalism. I don't talk about it much because I could go on for hours. I'm Autistic and I love cooking, baking, the Bible, music, and fundies. I have more interests and I could spend hours Googling things.

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Howl

I talk to my husband a little bit about it, but he doesn't really "get" it and part of that is that these families are so convoluted.  However, he knows about the Penningtons and the Phillips family because I've discussed it when we've ventured into their home territories.  I'll say, remember that girl who couldn't get her parents to get her a birth certificate?  

Can't think of anyone else who'd understand. 

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JermajestyDuggar

I don’t think fundie fascination is any different than Kardashian fascination. Think of all the people that know every minute detail of every Kardashian and Jenner. People don’t find those people to be strange. I personally think fundies are much more interesting than the Kardashians though. Well some are. The Maxwell’s are boring AF. The Duggars and Bateses are becoming as predictable as the Kardashians. But some fundie families are very interesting. Or just plain ridiculous.

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Tangy Bee

FJ is my deep dark secret. I get pissed when I catch my Gran watching the Duggars. I use to watch years ago. Now for some reason I just CAN'T. Still can't believe they are famous enough to be on magazine covers. Appears to be no end in sight.

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apandaaries

I discuss this with family and the very best friends. I’ve had long term plans to write a book (um, thus far still in the planning stages, sigh), so I mention these things as a long term interest for those who’ll listen to me prattle on.

My kid has some knowledge of my hobby and laughs with me, which is the reaction of most of my family. One brother was disgusted/fascinated by PP as he was getting expelled from Botswana. He loved those crazy videos. My other brother viewed a video of Jill as she ranted about modesty. His reaction was along the lines of, “this crazy lady with all that mascara wants to discuss modesty?!” His wife doesn’t wear makeup, so I suspect he doesn’t know the difference between eyeliner and mascara. 😂 but even the most general American population can recognize her absurdities, at least in my experience. My mom is a Christian who abhors these stories; she thinks all these people are dreadful. 

In general, I disclose my obsession to a small group of people who are willing to listen to my reasons/justifications for following the crazies. But really, we all have hobbies, some more obscure than others. 

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grandmadugger

My husband knows about FJ in the sense that "it's the big international forum where we talk about fundies and other stuff" other than that most people don't know my slight obsession with fundies.  My family knows that I have researched and studied many different sects of Christianity.  My real obsession started with Big Love and went from there though I've always been curious. 

I live 30-ish minutes from the Phelps compound and about an hour or so from Steve Maxwell.  I've had run-ins with the Phelps crowd.  I've countered protested them on many occasions.  Actually, those interactions are what makes me think twice about some of my comments here.  One of the granddaughters who left said she found the courage to leave by reading comments online because they made her realize that we out here weren't as bad as she had been taught.  Of course the Phelps value education so she had an education that would allow her to get a basic entry-level job.

We also have our own mini-sorta-when-the-mood-strikes-them group of fundies.  The 2nd generation was skirts/culottes only in grade school.  Then at some point they started wearing pants.   Then they were skirts/culottes for things like church camp now they are back to skirts only.  I have always subscribed to the thought Jesus isn't judging me on what I'm wearing.  Like, He's not up in heaven going, "Scrubs get no love or GIRL! You look cute so I'm giving you extra blessings."  He's more worried about if I'm following his directions, "Love thy neighbor. What you do to the least of these you do to me. "

Thanks for coming to my word salad Ted talk on why I am obsessed with fundies.

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Naga Viper

My husband is willing to listen to me ramble about fundies to an extent, since he understands the clear and present danger they present politically. We don't talk about it daily—long car drives are a prime time to do an info dump—but occasionally he'll come home and greet me with "What's Jill been up to today?"

I've tried converting a few people to FJ with no luck, most notably Mr. Viper's atheist brother who loves to troll proselytizers, but when I explained the Rods passing near him in Minnesota, he listened politely but didn't really bite. Maybe just as well—after thinking about it, I feel like his online persona might give people Al Wilson flashbacks.

Some of my other friends are aware of my fundie interest but seem to just view it as another typically random thing I'm into.

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Dizzy
EyesOpen

My husband doesn’t understand and we don’t talk about FJ. My husband and close friends know I have interest in cults, sociology, outlier groups of people and researching different religions. I put FJ in that category. 

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Quiverfulloftwins

My husband really doesn't know about Free Jinger persee he just sees it as being lumped in with my general fascination with cults and even different religions. He just takes it as part of me and teases me a little when he sees another random cult documentary pop up on the dvr or the Netflix que.

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Melinda

In Finland we have Leastadianism and it is kind of cult. They are against birth control, TV, dancing, makeup... But clothing is not a thing, so women don't have to use skirts. And there is no homeschooling and that makes them more normal. When I'm talking FJ or Duggars to my friends or family, I usually start by asking them to think about lestadianism and then they somehow can understand what I'm talking about. 

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Sops2

It's my guilty secret- that and a love of post apocalyptic zombie fiction

 

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Meh
WhatWouldJohnCrichtonDo?
40 minutes ago, Melinda said:

But clothing is not a thing...

For just a second, I thought you meant that they don't wear clothes. I guess I need more sleep, or more caffeine! :pb_lol:

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Spent
clueliss

I don't talk to people about my fundie fascination.  Learned behavior from my being a US Big Brother Fan since season 1.  And I have a whole collection of friends I've never met and am now facebook friends with.  (some of them very very good/close friends who know far more about me than people in real life do)

Translation my BB friends get it - it is sort of like fight club.  I do not talk about fight club.  I do not talk about BB outside of BB friends.  I do not (usually) talk about fudies outside of here (however there are a few folks in my collection of BB friends who know about this place and will ask questions when scandals come up)

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FundamentallyShocked

The two youngest shocklings and I share a fascination/existential horror of Bro. Gary. We quote his best lines, the current favorite being "The prince is in the pudding. I judge you with a fruit." They even follow him on fb and send me screen shots. The older two shocklings and Mr. Shocked think is it rather weird.

 

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WiseGirl

Ironically this obsession  started at work when a few of us were discussing the wtf-ness of the Duggars. They don't know how far down the rabbit hole I've gone, but I am the resident "expert" on cults at work.

My daughter and my niece know though and both think I'm nuts with this obsession although my niece is beginning to understand the political ramifications of the fundies so she does ask me what's new in FJ every now and then,

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Melinda
23 minutes ago, WhatWouldJohnCrichtonDo? said:

For just a second, I thought you meant that they don't wear clothes. I guess I need more sleep, or more caffeine! :pb_lol:

I knew there was something wrong in that sentence! :D I wish I were better in English. 

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Meh
WhatWouldJohnCrichtonDo?
7 minutes ago, Melinda said:

I knew there was something wrong in that sentence! :D I wish I were better in English. 

Your English seems good to me. I think I'm just tired. :sleeping-blue: I suppose adding the word "modest" to your sentence could help a little. " But modest clothing is not a thing..." 

But really, I need more sleep. :digging-grave:

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Ticklish

You guys and my fundie fascination in general is kind of a secret. My husband knows I used to watch the Duggar show and still follow the family, but doesn't really know that I spend time on message boards reading about them and others too. He wouldn't mind or think it's that odd, he just doesn't question what I read on my phone to unwind and I've never brought it up.

I have a few friends who also follow the Duggars, so we do talk about the big announcements but they don't know the extent of my fascination either. I'm regarded as the expert (which is a weird thing to be considered an expert of) and I've mentioned that I've been reading online about the Duggars and Bates for years, but they haven't questioned where and I haven't volunteered as I think they lean slightly too leg humpery for FJ. 

So I guess the Duggars are something of an open secret to those closest to me, but I haven't fully confessed to my interest in all fundies like the Rods, Maxwells, Bates, etc. 

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Unimpressed
delphinium65

How do I explain it?  I don't.  I have moved to a new state within the past several years, so I'm around a completely new group of people who have no connection with my fundie days. Some of them know in general terms that I come from a very religious background, but the subject just doesn't come up.  I do talk to my husband about it a little, but I keep some limits on that discussion.  I know he doesn't entirely get it, and that's OK-his background is very, VERY different from mine. If he really did understand I'd think there are a lot of things he's not telling me!  :pb_lol:   He accepts and respects that difference, and my interests, which is enough for me.  

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