Escape from Christian Fundamentalism - the Kids Who Flee Abusive, Isolated Christian Homes

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posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:08 PM
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Thankfully, these poor Generation Joshua kids are coming of age and DITCHING their religions. The Evangelical homeschool era (80s and 90s) were the worst for propagating Fundamentalist "soldiers" by indoctrinating and abusing their kids - keeping them away from the public.

Escape from Christian Fundamentalism - the Kids Who Flee Abusive, Isolated Christian Homes

They were raised to carry the fundamentalist banner forward and redeem America. But now their Generation is rebelling.

Now, those kids are leaving, in droves; realizing they were 'prisoners' in their homes, and their parents were crazed fanatics. The kids leave home (IF they get out safely) and see that they are UNPREPARED to live in the real world;

this article is long, but it gives some actual stories that will send chills (evil chills) down your spine to read.

It's reprinted on the above source from The American Prospect original source here:
The Homeschool Apostates

Now, it's not news that I fight against early indoctrination and abuse of kids into fundamentalist Christian dogma; I've made several threads along those lines. Some readers may not have believed my claims, or recognized the ugly truths about it, but it's getting noisier out there. Time to stop this nonsense. IT IS CHILD ABUSE.

THIS ARTICLE talks about what happens to those kids once they escape the "nest"...and it ISN'T PRETTY. This is the generation who will take the reins next. I can only cheer them on and hope that their parents' misguided and appalling 'methods' will become ILLEGAL in the near future.

Happily, there are now forums and blogs dedicated to helping them out; and "out" they are coming, with support from others who have been brave enough to do so.

They're finding support amongst their peers. YAY for growing up and abandoning stupidity despite what their parents did to them!

“Children in these situations are taught that if you talk badly about your parents, that’s a sin, and you’re going to hell,” Lauren says. “So when they finally get the courage and determination to say something, no one believes them, because they didn’t say anything all those years. You end up having to find an entirely new support network of people who actually believe you.”

In Washington, that new support network immediately kicked in. Through an informal group of young women who broke away from fundamentalist families, Lauren had become friends with Hännah Ettinger, who writes “Wine & Marble,” a blog about transitioning out of fundamentalist culture.


Hannah says this:

One of the things that has been a constant struggle for me, as a woman leaving the world of Christian patriarchy, has been reconciling reality to my learned “right” responses. I have to be gutsy and take charge of my life and heed my personality type and my needs and make sure I’m living in a way that works best for who I am. But it’s hard to learn to do this, because I grew up considering myself strongest when deferring to other’s needs and wants, most godly when negating my desires, and most strong and female when abandoning my preferences to respond and absorb the desires and choices of others.
The term I’ve heard used for this is “learned helplessness” and it’s frequently a gendered problem, but I think it’s not just an issue for women. It’s also an issue for everyone in the ”new reformed” circles of young Calvinists.


Here are some other 'outlets' and 'resources' mentioned as well:

The website that linked to Jennifer’s story was Homeschoolers Anonymous, launched in March by two homeschool graduates, Ryan Stollar and Nicholas Ducote. Their goal was to show what goes on behind closed doors in some Christian homeschooling families—to share, as one blogger puts it, “the stories we were never allowed to talk about as children.”

As of October, Homeschoolers Anonymous had published nearly 200 personal accounts and attracted more than 600,000 page views.For those outside the homeschooling movement, and for many inside it, the stories are revelatory and often shocking. The milder ones detail the haphazard education received from parents who, with little state oversight, prioritize obedience and religious training over learning. Some focus on women living under strict patriarchal regimes. Others chronicle appalling abuse that lasted for years.


From Homeschooler's Anonymous:

Homeschoolers Anonymous is a cooperative project by former homeschoolers. We are an inclusive community interested in sharing our experiences growing up in the conservative, Christian homeschooling subculture. From the Quiverfull movement to the betrothal/courtship mentality to Generation Joshua and the dominionist attitudes of HSLDA, we are survivors. And we are standing together to make our voices heard. We want the world to hear our stories and we want to give hope to those who are still immersed in that world.

Homeschoolers Anonymous is expanding to become a non-profit organization called HARO — Homeschool Alumni Reaching Out. HARO’s goals is improve homeschooling communities for future generations by educating homeschooling families about abuse and self-injury, building financial and emotional support for the next generation, and continuing to share our stories and experiences.


One of their articles is this:
HOME IS WHERE THE HURT IS: MARY’S STORY, PART ONE



HA notes: The following series is an original non-fiction story that spans 33 pages of single-spaced sentences. It will be divided into 10 parts. The story begins during the author’s early childhood and goes up to the present. At each stage the author writes according to the age she is at.

Trigger warnings: various parts of this story contain descriptions of graphic, often sadistic, physical abuse of children, apologisms for religious abuse, deprivation of food, as well as references to rape.


If you, kind reader, are genuinely interested in helping our youths and emerging adults to be good leaders, to steward our nation into the future, PLEASE do not brush these atrocities aside.

It is wonderful that these kids are resilient enough to pull themselves together; but far, far too many are still caught in "Jesus Camp" homes, and it really, really needs to stop. Those who have escaped (and Nate Phelps is a good example) find that they are exquisitely ill-equipped to deal with the real world, to have normal relationships, to make autonomous decisions, to parent or provide spousal support.

Thanks for reading. Enough horror on these sites and in these articles to keep you busy for days...
WHAT do we WANT for our kids?

Whatever "God" is; it needs to spare the world from its most twisted 'followers'.


edit on 12/9/13 by wildtimes because: (no reason given)




posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:10 PM
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Oh, look, here's what happens when you're NOT raised as a godless communist!

/sarcasm



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:19 PM
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One day people will wake up and see this for what it is abuse..lucky those kids have grown up and left their parents.
It is sad and I hope the very religious read this and think "Is it worth risking the love of my son/daughter by forcing my ideas (nope not yours some other mans idea of god, no original thought here) onto them.
Good for the kids and shame on the parents.
S&F.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:22 PM
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reply to post by wildtimes
 


I just started reading Mary's story, and noticed this linkydink, too:
Homeschooling's Invisible Children

Shining a Light on Abuse and Neglect among Homeschooled Children


A Voice for the Voiceless Child

Inspired by the recent high profile deaths of several homeschooled children, including Lydia Schatz, Hana Williams, and Nubia Barahona, HIC shines a light on the dark side of homeschooling, where a lack of outside protections for homeschooled children has led to some horrifying consequences.

Homeschooling can be a useful educational tool in the hands of the right parents, but when it falls into the hands of the wrong parents the results can be disastrous, and it is the children who suffer.

HIC documents and archives cases where homeschooling was not in the best interest of the child and was instead used as a means to isolate, abuse, and neglect, resulting in exceedingly harmful or fatal outcomes. This is for Lydia, Hana, Nubia, the children of the Gravelles and Kluths, and all of those whose stories we may never hear.


Please note the disclaimer: Homeschooling can be a useful educational tool in the hands of the right parents, but when it falls into the hands of the wrong parents the results can be disastrous, and it is the children who suffer. (copied and bolded from above).

We must stop this!!
edit on 12/9/13 by wildtimes because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:26 PM
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I can certainly feel for the kids in this article because their experiences are not that different from my own. I was brought up a strict Jehovah's Witness and while to outsiders they may just seem a little 'fundy' from the inside it's an entirely different story.

Growing up as such you had a fear hanging over you that today could be the day you die..your thoughts alone were enough to condemn you to death at Armageddon, which they drill into you via indoctrination from infancy. They had books specifically geared towards children like the Book of Bible Stories, which I call the Book of Bible Horror Stories. I mean who puts images of people dieing e.i. woman clinging to baby on rock during the flood while Noah *the righteous* is safe in the ark because he OBEYED. in a children's book, there are images from the book that I still can't get out of my head at 41.

You are terrorized basically, told everyone else is bad, not to be associated with cause only your cult er religion has the 'truth'. I was told I'd never make it to high school because the 'new system' would be here long before then. Kids in cults are not prepared to have a future at all, to make any plans for themselves because the entire control mechanism is designed to enslave them to the congregation or organization and isolate them from any and all potential triggers to critical thinking.

It absolutely is child abuse, even if no sexual abuse or physical abuse occurs to a given child it is mental abuse and leaves the individual completely unprepared to lead a successful life free of it as they were derailed from normal development since birth in many cases.

Sometimes it's really frustrating to try to explain to people that the scars you carry from such an upbringing aren't something you can just 'get over', that they will haunt you for life as in many cases freedom means loss of family and life long 'friends'. You suddenly find yourself as Neo in the Matrix but with No one to guide you how to survive let alone thrive in the real world. It's hard to be the hero of your own story when you spent years, decades even being unwritten in it.


No child should be forced to follow any religion, cult or creed in my opinion. Children shouldn't be indoctrinated with a set belief system that declares all others evil or wrong. If I could have back my childhood and the many hours a week I was forced to spend sitting listening to talks about how sinful I was, how horrible I was, how I better hope God gives me mercy and for once had heard how great I was, how talented I was, how I could accomplish anything my life I'm sure would have turned out differently.

Don't get me wrong, I am a survivor and I'm thankful I woke up to what I was raised in and never allowed my children to endure what I endured but it doesn't change the fact that I can't go back and I'll never know what it is like to just be a child with no fear constantly hanging over my head.


I can only hope one day humanity will realize that freedom of religion does NOT extent to freedom to abuse.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:37 PM
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reply to post by wildtimes
 


Interesting all the stories Jesus is getting blamed for. I have to dig to find kids getting honor killed as muslims. That's an everyday thing in most arab countries. Along with the beating/rape/imprisonment by the gov of children/women that open their mouths to speak or don't wear a head cover outside. Very interesting indeed, Mr Wildtimes. Im curious why you want to focus on a religion that says to forgive despite those in power perverting the Gospel rather than a religion that teaches intolerance that is soon to be a problem in every corner of the globe. You are aware muslims are exempt from obamacare?
Picture is a little bigger than you comprehend.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:38 PM
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reply to post by wildtimes
 


Not all Home schoolers are Religious.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:39 PM
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reply to post by Hillbilly123069
 


How did Muslim's get exempt when Christians Can't get exempted?



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:44 PM
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reply to post by Hillbilly123069
 



Very interesting indeed, Mr Wildtimes. Im curious why you want to focus on a religion that says to forgive despite those in power perverting the Gospel rather than a religion that teaches intolerance that is soon to be a problem in every corner of the globe. You are aware muslims are exempt from obamacare?
Picture is a little bigger than you comprehend.

Review my thread history before you denigrate my "comprehension".

I'm comprehending plenty. And I've done threads about Islam, and participated in them as well. I do not discriminate in attacking abusive religious practices and doctrines. I'm an equal opportunity activist in this war on religion's abuses, both political and social, parental and national.

What these people (in this thread's OP) are doing is NOT what Jesus taught.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:44 PM
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reply to post by ChesterJohn
 


Obviously.
Sigh.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:47 PM
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reply to post by sweetstuff
 


Thanks, sweetstuff, for sharing your thoughts here.

I'm so sorry that you had to endure that sort of upbringing; but delighted to hear that you turned away from that 'method' of parenting. Good on you!!

Sorry, also, for responding to the posters below you (just wanted to get them out of the way, they must have missed the disclaimers, or are just trolling to try to shoot me down.)

I have found a host of other new forums for the people who've suffered as you have, just by clicking through the ones I've sourced for the OP. I hope they will be of some help and comfort to you.




posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:50 PM
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reply to post by wildtimes
 


Abuse has more to do with mental disorders than it does religion or anything else. Like minded tend to congregate and they use a common denominator (their religion/beliefs) as an excuse/cover.

From your own link...


To most people, it would have sounded like overreaction to innocuous forms of teenage rebellion. But Lauren, who’d cut ties with her family the previous year, knew it was more. The sisters grew up, with two brothers, in a family that was almost completely isolated, they say, held captive by their mother’s extreme anxiety and explosive anger. “I was basically raised by someone with a mental disorder and told you have to obey her or God’s going to send you to hell,” Lauren says. “Her anxiety disorder meant that she had to control every little thing, and homeschooling and her religious beliefs gave her the justification for it.”


www.alternet.org...

edit on 9-12-2013 by Deetermined because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:53 PM
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reply to post by Deetermined
 


Abuse in the name of God is abuse, Dee. It is abuse.

You're making a case for fundamentalism being a mental disorder, though. Not sure you wanted to go there; but we certainly can if you'd like....knock yourself out!
(Also, I thought you'd left ATS! Thanks for chiming in)
edit on 12/9/13 by wildtimes because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:56 PM
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reply to post by wildtimes
 


Thanks wild and thank you for posting the information, I agree that a light needs to be shone on those who hide behind religious practice as an excuse to abuse the innocent and undefended. I've checked out many sites as you mentioned in the past, I've been out for over a decade now and to be honest, for me I didn't find it healing after a certain point but heartbreaking as I've have come to know of so many who haven't been able to completely wipe the brainwashing out of their heads.

For myself I know what I grew up in is a cult, and years of research definitely helped me to start to think critically with regard to religion as a whole but sadly many cult survivors will spend the rest of their lives doubting themselves, wondering 'what if I'm wrong'?? And that insidious fear will never truly cease.

To Hillbilly, I can only hope that you never know the horrors my young mind was subjected to in Jesus's name. It's really hard to love someone you are terrified of. The faults of other religions does not mean we should turn a blind eye to abuse among those who claim to be Jesus's followers. To do so would be a disrespect to him and all he stood for, namely, Love.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 12:57 PM
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IMO any group that tries to recruit should focus on their own internal issues before trying to convert/recruit new members. People always try to play the "not a true christian" card in situations like this in order to separate themselves from those that are causing harm.

Just like the "good cop" argument, not taking steps to stop those inside your group that are causing harm is nearly as bad as being the one causing the harm. Where are the Christians that are focused on preventing abuse and harm caused by those of the same faith?

Seems they are too busy trying to recruit new members to bother with these kind of abusive people.

DC



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 01:01 PM
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reply to post by wildtimes
 


Fundamentalism isn't a mental disorder, abuse is. People can use anything for a cover if they want to.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 01:02 PM
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reply to post by Deetermined
 


Fundamentalism breeds mental illness, of that D, I can assure you.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 01:10 PM
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Deetermined
reply to post by wildtimes
 


Fundamentalism isn't a mental disorder, abuse is. People can use anything for a cover if they want to.

You have to admit though Dee, the more religious extremists in our world usually come out of fundamentalism. Because it's very legalistic and unbending in its doctrine.
edit on 12/9/2013 by Klassified because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 01:10 PM
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reply to post by Deetermined
 



Fundamentalism isn't a mental disorder, abuse is. People can use anything for a cover if they want to.

Tell it to the survivors. One of the articles on Homeschool Anonymous is by a woman who was an abusive homeschooling fundie:
I WAS AN ABUSIVE HOMESCHOOLING MOTHER: BROOK LEYZOREK’S STORY

A confession. She says she CHOSE to do those abusive things rather than defy her husband. And she didn't just let him do the beating. She chimed in.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 01:12 PM
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reply to post by sweetstuff
 


Mental illness breeds mental illness, not fundamentalism. I bet if you did a little research on your past experiences growing up, you'd find all kinds mental dysfunction within the people you were surrounded by that made you feel less than worthy of being human. I bet you would have had a different experience inside of a different "congregation" of people.






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