My medical files are a lot like my vagina…

…stubborn old white men shouldn’t be allowed to control what goes in or out them.

dark humor rating: 5/5

swearing: 4/5

Like the new layout? Thanks, marginally edited the template CSS myself. *tongue click*

Back to my vagina…

I’ve been endlessly bitter about the fact that the infected prolapses running this country seem to be forgetting that the cunts they crawl into every night, in their attempt to climb back into the womb as a last-ditch Freudian attempt to gain their scorned mother’s approval, have their own thought processes and everything. It’s almost like women aren’t available holes to rest their wrinkled and withered chodes in.

Sorry, did my mention of cunts give you an erection? My bad. I’m only a woman! I’m a bad influence on males because I don’t cover my knees and allow my bra straps to indicate that I’m wearing  a bra and that I have breasts. My bad.

Yeah. You can probably guess that I’m not feeling so hot right now. Probably because I have to pay 30 dollars just to get my fucking birth control that I don’t even use because I’m sexually active, but because my periods make the side effects and my bipolar moods even goddamn worse. 

I’m also upset because there’s a war developing overseas and more and more children are dying because radical idiots want to soak their streets in innocent blood because a fucking ancient book told them it was righteous. 

But you know what?

I’m going to spend my free time, instead of making peace resolutions, playing golf and defunding national programs so more and more women can die from cervical cancer and suffer through back alley abortions because they just weren’t feeling generous enough to have their rapist’s baby. 

Thank you, Mike Pence. You are a true revolutionary.

So, now, thanks to Mike Pence, babies will be born. Babies of all kinds:

  • Crack babies,
  • Premature babies that their mothers couldn’t be bothered to quit smoking, chewing tobacco/drinking alcohol/smoking pot for,
  • Rapist babies,
  • Babies born of incest with painful, debilitating genetic disorders,
  • Babies addicted to heroin and missing half their limbs,
  • Babies who will be chronic pain until they die even more painfully at the age of 4, 
  • Babies who were not wanted to begin with and the mothering instinct didn’t kick in to change that but were forced to be born 
  • Babies who will be abandoned in the cold or killed because they weren’t wanted
  • Babies that will be physically/sexually molested/raped/abused for years down the line and will likely continue the cycle of rape and abuse without proper treatment
  • Babies that will be indoctrinated for 10-15 years of its life to believe everything is sinful and that they’re deserving of hell and forced into adulthood like a baby bird with a wing missing forced out of its nest and off a fucking cliff
  • Babies that will grow up unwanted and will become serial murders/rapists/killers
  • Babies that will be sold through black markets and traded like cattle for slavery and sex

And of course, babies that are a mixture of 2 or 5 of these lovely categories.

It’s all thanks to Mike Pence.

Because all babies deserve to be born…

…but not all will be loved.

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OCD and website design

The site’s not going down, but it may change now and again. No posts will be removed, I’m just struggling.

I can’t pay anyone to do code magic for me, so I have to learn.

AHHHHH

CODING LANGUAGE

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The Daily Toast: What exactly makes a Christian sect/domination fundamentalist?

This looks like the PERFECT post for Easter Sunday. >=D

swearing rating: 3/5

dark humor rating: 3/5

Questions answered in this blog post:
1. What is the definition of fundamentalism?
2. What is the difference between extremism and fundamentalism? How are they similar, but not the same?
3. What is the difference between a fundamentalist Christian sect and a cult? Why can a cult be called fundamentalist, but a fundamentalist church can’t (academically) be called a cult?

Questions not answered:

Why the name of this is The Daily Toast.

Figure it out. 

Definition of fundamentalism
1
a often capitalized : a movement in 20th century Protestantism emphasizing the literally interpreted Bible as fundamental to Christian life and teaching
b : the beliefs of this movement
c : adherence to such beliefs a minister noted for his strict fundamentalism
2
: a movement or attitude stressing strict and literal adherence to a set of basic principles Islamic fundamentalism; political fundamentalism

(credit to www.meriam-webster.com)

Society is much too quick to slap labels on things without digging under the weeds to find the root. How are you to remove all the weeds if you haven’t eliminated the source? This metaphor’s getting oddly violent, so let’s move along.

More often than not, a person is not going to outwardly notice whether a church believes fundamentally or not. The most corrupt fundamentalist churches can also be the most appealing on the surface because that is the gimmick. I’m not saying that all fundamentalist churches are lining their pockets–some of them are also glorifying child abuse.

I went to an Independent Fundamental Baptist academy that taught with the Accelerated Christian Education curriculum which has its own roots deep within Southern Baptist, right-winged fundamentalism. Sadly, it seems that this same red-state pseudo-democracy has flooded the American government and is shutting out the liberal and secular voices day after day. The cabinet is so scarily resembling the worst of the worst Southern Baptist Christian redneck family. We have the ancient grandpa that brags about all the tractors and “American-made” pickup trucks he had growing up and covertly changes the TV channel when a black or Hispanic person is shown (Jeff Sessions). We have the thrice-divorced mother of five that owns fifty different elaborate cross necklaces, two Range Rovers, and has five maxed out credit cards, but insists she tithes over 10% and that her child is possessed by the devil because she kissed a boy from a public school (Betsy DeVos). And we have that weird married-in New-Yorker that spends more on spray tans and Russian porn websites than the country he runs (dear ole Donny Trump.) Also, don’t forget the guy with the very quite wife that is wearing so much eye makeup she hopes is covering the bruises from her husband beating the shit out of her for talking more than five minutes with the mailman (Mike Pence).

Sorry, this was going to get really depressing if I didn’t fit in a complicated, winding metaphor. Or twelve.

The hot-button issues of today are all steeped in fundamentalist dogma. For a country supposedly built from a melting pot, we seem to be forgetting that the melting substance wasn’t exclusively white cheddar fondue. I’ve chosen to just always have a convenient song in my head to drown out the Republican out-cries of “Wow, Trump is certainly breaking a lot of his promises” as if we the democracy haven’t been yelling “HE’S A LYING FUCKBAG” down their collars for two GODDAMN YEARS–

Breathe in. Breathe out. Hold a cat. Have argument with cat.

I made this post mainly to inform while swearing. If you were offended–congratulations, I aim to please.

What people need to understand is the difference between fundamentalism and extremism. I would consider the line crossed into extremism when government law and ethics have been breached for a religious cause. Allow me to give you a format:

–It’s fundamentalism if you picket and defund Planned Parenthood clinics, it’s extremism if you bomb them.

–It’s fundamentalism if you punish children for breaking legalistic (moral) rules, it’s extremism if you physically punish children for doing so.

–It’s fundamentalism if you publicly shame or ridicule homosexuality, it’s extremism when you refuse service or threaten violence against those that are homosexual.

–It’s fundamentalism if you don’t believe in gay marriage, it’s extremism when you refuse to grant a gay couple a marriage license. You can be applauded by the Pope for such action, but you still broke the law and are still a bitch. (I’ll admit that I added that one out of pure salty contempt.)

–It’s fundamentalism when you outwardly preach your homophobic and sexist garbage to a forum of random citizens, it’s extremism because I will kill you if you ring my doorbell to witness to me at 8 in the morning. Joke. But you will not come to my house again. ‘Cause I’ve got an attitude that’s deadlier than any shotgun, baby.

So what’s Merriam-Webster got to say about extremism?

Definition of extremism

  1. :  the quality or state of being extreme

  2. :  advocacy of extreme measures or views :  radicalism

While there are extremist views in the fundamentalist churches of America, calling them extremists is different than just plain fundamentalist. Extremism tends to be about action and typically, such actions are illegal. Dare I say it, I’d say that Black Lives Matter has it fair share of extremists because rather than the peaceful protests propagated by one of their most influential idols, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, they are literally destroying public property and threatening more riots in the wake of black teenagers being shot. Am I denying that there is racial profiling among the American police forces? Short answer: No. I fear there will always be racial profiling, but I don’t consider skin color to be the issue. Gang violence and violence against the “pigs” has dominated the music charts and gangster rap culture bleeds into the veins of all pigments of youth. If anybody, regardless of color, is going to make a living out of life of crime and promote sexism, gang wars, and drug cartels, the police are going to be an ever-present reality for them. Cause and effect, cause and correlation, call it whatever you want. Radical views of any culture and race is going to spawn some brand of extremism.

In terms of a global demographic, extremism within Christianity has taken a backseat to the Islamic State’s reign of terror. Even though it is with pure vitriolic reluctance, I must commend Trump’s choice of non-nuclear device to target the IEDs within those caves. I still wish that we hadn’t pushed the red button quite so fast. What with the naval ships moving in toward Korea, I can only see more imminent disputes among nations.

I still think that Christian fundamentalism needs to be combated within American society. Not through force or any civil war, but by drowning out the voices of hate with messages of peace and tolerance. We do not need to go extreme right or extreme left. There needs to be a middle line where human rights are equal for men and women, immigrants are treated as people rather than statistics, and several gaps within the economic fabric are closed with equal pay and equal rights for workers.

My final point of this blog post was to explain the difference between a fundamentalist church and a cult. While several fundamentalist churches could definitely be seen as having a cult mentality (i.e. Becky Fischer and her own confessed indoctrination of children as shown in the 2006 documentary, Jesus Camp) this does not categorize it as a cult. The main difference between a cult and a fundamentalist church is that a cult will start gravitating their worship toward a person rather than a deity. This person might proclaim that they are the literal second coming of Christ, a literal Prophet of God, or they will form their own kind of twisted religion.

Many cults actually live in their own communities segregated from the public that they think is the evil “outsiders”. The most pertinent example would be the FLDS Church, or the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. That’s what I meant by the phrase, “a cult be called fundamentalist, but a fundamentalist church can’t (academically) be called a cult.” I used Becky Fischer for the example above. She’s an absolutely horrible influence for children and adults, but she’s not a cult leader. The kids don’t literally worship her (though, that scene of the George Bush cutout was suspect). Within the FLDS Church, the indoctrinated men, women, and children literally believe that Warren Jeffs is their Prophet sent from God to lead them into Heaven. And may I just reiterate that the brainwashing is so severe, that they believe that they can pray Warren Jeffs out of prison. He was convicted and charged with numerous sexual abuse offenses. Before he was arrested, he had over eighty wives in his polygamous cult, the youngest wife being only 12-years-old.

If I may add another “fundamentalist/extremist” example: A fundamentalist thinks that marrying multiple wives younger than 18 years is allowed by God, an extremist actively preys and rapes little girls and calls it righteous.

There is a tape of Warren Jeffs instructing his followers while engaging in sexual intercourse with the girl. Part of the cult teachings is that the many wives needed to bear many children, so sterile men would have to attend a ceremony in which another man attempts to impregnate his wife. There are still women forced to live within these communities because they have no rights and literally belong to their husbands. However, there are people who make it their duty to help girls escape and save their children from the community.

Ugh, I’ve been discussing this for about 1500 words now and I want to vomit. In closing, I’ve hope I have educated you and thoroughly horrified you into the realities of fundamentalism, extremisms, and cults and their differences. I’m only getting started with this topic, so stay tuned.

Oh, before I forget. Happy Easter. Have some Jesus bunnies.

Okay, they’re just bunnies.

fo1LTb03ch5A3ktumblr_o5oyxl5w081s02vreo2_500

Last one’s eating a cherry. Just in case you thought it was a ferocious flesh-eating rabbit.

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How Evanescence Brought Me To Life (sorry, not sorry)…Or How Goth Rock Saved Me From Going Under (still not sorry) (part 1)

 

Edit: The red links aren’t dead links, BTW. I can’t figure out how to make them blue again. Whoops.

I was at the ripe age of 12 and had suffered through my 7th grade year at the ACE academy. At the height of the rampant boredom and indoctrination, I had joined the volleyball team and experienced a full three months of pure hatred for my whole body in which I punished it, trying to get it into a “normal” shape like “normal”, “popular” girls my age.

Think self-image can’t be any worse than it already is for teenage girls in public school? Think again! Because you have also have God and a father that thinks he’s the living mouthpiece of Christ and Dr. Phil and has every right to call you demeaning names and pinch your ass.

That’s not creepy at all, you old fuck. (He wasn’t being sexual with it, but…I’ve gone past the days where I’m putting “in all fairness” before mentioning his bitch ass notions of “fatherly love”.) Needless to say, I was sick of it all.

ANYWAY. Remember Yahoo! Music?

“Chelsea…Yahoo! Music still exists.”

Shut up, Jim. Fuckin’ Jim.

What I meant was…remember when Yahoo! Music was good?

When I was 12, it was 2005, and YouTube was still in its infancy and plesiosaurs roamed the Earth.

“No one’s going to get that joke.”

SHUT UP, JIM. I was listening and watching a sort-of radio broadcast online and watching music videos. This was a big deal considering we didn’t have that good of a PC and the buffering times were absolute murder. But then it randomly gave me one of the newer videos from a genre I didn’t know existed.

Oh, hey. Embed videos. How ya doin’?!

At first I was like, “What the heck is this?” (12-year-old me didn’t have quite as much of a filthy mouth as I do now) and then the beginning guitar riff started. Then the snare.

I hadn’t quite embraced the full meaning of the video and song yet, I just knew I was captivated by the sound.

And there’s just SOOOOO much of this song and video that could apply to my situation at the time and would be even more apparent eleven years later.

“There’s nothing better than a good lie.” Cheesy homemaker stereotype.

The cut of singer Amy Lee in her black sweatshirt with the hood up while two pretentious blonde bitches giggle at her sums up my whole social life at the academy.

The lyrics from the very beginning terrify and enrapture me, because it’s like she’s singing about my very life right at that moment:

Perfect by nature, icons of self-indulgence. 

Just what we all need, more lies about our world that 

Never was and never will be

Have you no shame?

Don’t you see me? 

You know you’ve got everybody fooled!

Because no one at this academy took the blame for their actions. If you weren’t understanding something, it was your fault for not trusting that the Lord will give you guidance.

Thinking of the pastor and the principal of the school. “Have you no shame…that you’re perpetrating these lies? That you’re surrounding these children within a protective bubble rather than actually preparing them for the world?”

“Don’t you see me?” The feeling of being ignored despite your silent screams for help.

The black clothes. The black hair. The black nails. The tearful eyes.

I told you. I fucking told you that I was depressed.

Don’t you see me?

The parents didn’t know. No parents knew what exactly what was being taught to their kids.

You know you’ve got everybody fooled

They thought they were saving us.

Oh, how we love you!

No flaws when you’re pretending…

Worshiping the Lord, worshiping the teachers.

Praying for God to make me perfect.

Why can’t I be perfect?

Why can’t I even be happy? 

Why do I feel so lonely? 

(cut to 1:56 of the video with the Japanese school girl get-up)

“Buy me. 

Love me. 

Use me.” 

Those stupid fucking metaphors in the PACEs.

“Have you prayed for your PACE today?” Have I prayed for an inanimate sheaf of paper and ink stapled together? No, but I am praying that I don’t slit my own wrists with my protractor.

“Have you invited the Lord to use you for His Mission?” Didn’t know that I could be leased like a steam vacuum.

“Have you showed your love for the Lord this morning?” I got out of bed and listened to my father bitch and moan the whole car ride over. I’d rather cry for three hours and I guess I can pencil in the God’s love circle-jerk for later.

“Excuse me, are you who I think you are?” I barely know if I’m still alive, bitch. Fuck off.

The lyrics are being drowned out by the blonde bitches, but it goes,

Without the mask…

Where will you hide?

Can’t find yourself

Lost in your lie!

And the most powerful part of the song now for me is

I know the truth now!

I know who you are!

And I don’t love you anymore! 

It never was and never will be

You don’t know how you’ve betrayed me

And somehow now you’re everybody’s fool

Never was and never will be

You’re not real and you can’t save me!

Somehow now you’re everybody’s fool…

And now you see how my love affair with this band began.

I bought their first studio album, Fallen, which was released on March 4th, 2003. They won Best New Artist over 50 Cent in the 2004 Grammys, which pissed him off to no end, but he actually came on stage to congratulate Amy Lee. Afterwards, 50 Cent was reported to have said, “I feel like I got jerked at the Grammys because I’m aggressive. I don’t understand how Evanescence got best new artist. I will never go back to the Grammy Awards ever in my career.” [1]” 

Okay, I could understand that point of view if it was like Best Album of the Year, but you were both new and they liked Evanescence better. What a better way to completely tarnish your reputation than to be a complete sore loser. I mean, that’s not to say Amy Lee didn’t fire up at any other artist. They all do it at some point. She had some things to say about Christina Aguilera.

“I read somewhere that that Evanescence chick [singer Amy Lee] said ‘Christina says she’s promoting feminism, but sticking up for females is the opposite of what she’s doing’. It’s like, first of all, from what standpoint or viewpoint, you know? And second, just because I don’t like to wear dark, covered-up things all the time…” She trails off laughing “That’s just not me. You be a woman in your viewpoint,and I’ll be a woman in mine.”

I actually agreed with Amy on this, but that was before I came out of my indoctrinated mindset. I’m sure she feels the same way about how she reflects on what she’s said in the past. She’s posed with Taylor Momsen, lead singer of The Pretty Reckless. And that artist has certainly confirmed that I’m bisexual from that scandalous full album art of their very appropriately named album Going to Hell.

I will get utterly flagged if I post the full image, so just know that this isn’t the complete image and you’re welcome for the spank bank material.

Image result for the pretty reckless going to hell album art

The band and album is also amazing and has some very good relatable songs. They aren’t a Christian band. (Obviously, if the glorious ass on the album art is any indication.) If anything, they are the type of band Christian magazines and websites will warn young girls not to listen to. I am also fiendishly delighted that the cross is pointing toward her crack.

ENOUGH LESBIANING, GET BACK TO MUSIC

This was meant to be a story and it turned to porn recommendations. (Sort of.)

Right, back to the madness.

Speaking of Christian band…did you know that there was a Christian song on the Fallen album? However, Evanescence is not a Christian rock band. And the song isn’t exactly the norm in terms of Christian rock music…

Trigger: Mentions of suicide and my emo phase…*shiver*

Did you know this album sparked a bit of controversy in the Christian rock scene?

Within the article:

“According to Robin Parrish of Christian Music Central, the “recent statements” that Meltzer speaks of is likely a reference to this week’s edition of Entertainment Weekly, which has a feature article on the group. In the article, band member (and professing Christian) Ben Moody uses the “f”-word and takes Christ’s name in vain multiple times.

This comes in contrast to past comments made by Moody. In “Fallen”‘s liner notes, he thanked (among others) Jesus Christ, saying, “All the life left in me is you.” In an interview given to Stranger Things magazine in 2002, Moody stated, “The message we as a band want to convey more than anything is simple – God is Love.” Yet now, according to the EW article, Moody and Lee consider discussions of their faith in early interviews to be ‘youthful indiscretions.'”

I marked the most interesting part in red, just so you don’t miss the subtle sass given by that sentence. Oh, no. Young Christian kids will know that the word “fuck” is the word “fuck”. Save the nation.

That reminds me ANOTHER joyful article that a friend at the time gave me over Yahoo!Messenger (hnnnngggg, nostalgia)…

“In December 2004, Trevin and Melanie Skeens of Maryland, who had bought the album for their thirteen-year-old daughter, filed a class action lawsuit against Wal-Mart after hearing the word ‘fuck’ spoken during the song “Thoughtless“, a cover of a Korn song. The lawsuit claimed that while the album contained this explicit word, there was no Parental Advisory sticker on the package. It also claimed that this album violated Wal-Mart’s policy of not stocking music with explicit lyrics, and that the company had to be aware of the problem because the word was dubbed out of a free sample on the Walmart.com website.[1][2] The lawsuit was resolved by court order of a deal which would allow those people who bought the album at a Maryland Wal-Mart location to receive a refund.[3][4] Some copies have the Parental Advisory notice, yet other copies are still sold without it now.”

I would feel so sorry for that child. Dear Darwin, some parents are just so stupid, they should have never been allowed to breed. I would think the subject matter of the song, Thoughtless, would be more prevalent than the word “fuck”.

Also, technically, there were two swears.

Why are you trying to make fun of me?
You think it’s funny?
What the fuck you think it’s doing to me?
You take your turn lashing out at me
I want you crying with your dirty ass in front of me

So, Evanescence has been steeped in controversy since their first album. I would consider “Tourniquet” to be their most controversial song still.

 

I really shouldn’t write that joke.

Goddamnit.

You really shouldn’t read the comments, you’ll want to kill yourself. 

Because this song…is about SUICIDE. *fanfare*

More specifically, it’s from the point of view of someone who’s just committed the act of suicide, is dying and bleeding out, and begging God for their entrance into Heaven.

…*confetti*

I do not literally take the subject of suicide lightly, but in reference to my emo 13-year-old self, it’s more like I’m mocking that version of me rather than people who genuinely have suicidal depression.

If you were on the Internet regularly from 2005 to 2007, you would be blind to not have come across the dozens of “emo” quotations and glittery JPEG files before memes were called memes. This was when Myspace still existed and was still cool. If it was possible to salvage my old Myspace page, it would be a leap into a fucking time machine because I haven’t accessed that thing since I was fifteen.

Anyway, I was emo. Embarrassingly so. I flaunted how emo I was by dressing in all black, dying my hair black, painting my nails black. I did all the stupid HTML glittery punk profile codes.

I went to a Christian academy…and I was emo.

Moment of silence for Emo Chelsea.

Something else of importance happened during my 13-year-old emo phase, Evanescence’s second album The Open Door was released.

You know you’re obsessed with a band when…you bought a full album’s sheet music.

20170412_184443

Check out that reflection glare, fam.

It’s not just for show…

Me playing the beginning of Lithium…

Well, my mind is honestly screaming, “NO YOU CAN’T UPLOAD THIS, THAT DOUBLE CHIN IS ATROCIOUS” and yes, I have very random things on my book shelf.

I’m uploading it anyway.

DEAL WITH IT, SELF-ESTEEM

Oh, now you’ve balled up in the corner crying…fuck’s sake.

So yeah, The Open Door.

No, Lithium isn’t a cover of Nirvana’s version, it is more like an homage. And if you were wondering if this song is mainly flats, yes. Yes, it is. So, that means the sheet music is EXTRA fun to read (wrongly). But I’m one of those infuriating people who learn mostly by ear and refuse to practice the gospel piano songs assigned by the piano teacher. Took seven years of piano but I’m still miserably inept at sight reading. (Hint: You actually have to practice the fucking scales you’re assigned. It’s simple until you have to do exercises with Bbmajor and I get enraged at my stupid fucking fingers for not wanting to do what I want them to do.)

But I did love piano. When I played songs I wanted to play, I mean. Not gospel songs and hating whenever October ends because that means Christmas music sheets out of the ass. If I ever have to perform 12 Days of Christmas for any reason, I will probably just see red and dismantle the piano. Why do I have to have six sheets for this? Just put Repeat until your ears bleed at the top as the recommended style/mood and save trees.

It was an outlet for my depression and rage coming home after school during those days. On particularly shitty days, I could go through an entire album song list playing piano and singing. Well, playing the chords anyway. Sometimes, I was too lazy to learn the whole sheet music (the parts where there would be other instruments I just fudged by rolling the chords). I still have trouble playing certain pieces while singing because I tend to focus on one thing instead of both at the same time–that’s confusing as hell, but anyway. I’d equate it to trying to rub your stomach while patting your head, but it’s more like your hands are retarded and don’t know what to do while your mouth is moving. It’s like my brain is going “I can’t do these things all at once, choose only one, I’m only one brain here” and but I’m other people can do it, why can’t I? Practice. Just do it over and over again until you’re screaming at your own stupid appendages for fucking up.

I did manage to teach myself the beginning piano intro to Good Enough. I probably still know it, because with playing music, it’s kind of muscle memory, you never really forget how to play. (Unless you get some sort of mental illness or deficiency.) You just have to remind yourself how by doing it.

How long is this fucking post? Looks like this is going to be a two-parter, ’cause…I’m bored now of typing.

 

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Documentaries/Biographies/Autobiographies About Fundamentalism I Recommend

Most of these are actually about the FLDS church and that’s technically a Mormon cult, but a lot of the autobiographies by women who’ve escaped FLDS polygamy have scarily similar themes to ACE schools and IFB communities. It’s just a show of how damaging and limiting it is to children and young women to be born into and raised up in fundamentalism, not to mention the struggles that the young boys who are kicked out (the “lost boys” or apostates) go through.

These are the ones that I’ve read and watched. If you’ve read one that I have not listed that you think is appropriate for this list, please mention it in the comments.

I will also warn that most of these are going to feature triggering content such as rape, molestation, graphic descriptions of male and female sex organs (especially Church of Lies), so please be advised.

FLDS Autobiographies


Escape by Carolyn Jessop

Triumph by Carolyn Jessop (this is a sequel to “Escape”, but it can be read without reading it first)

Stolen Innocence: My Story of Growing Up in a Polygamous Sect, Becoming a Teenage Bride, and Breaking Free of Warren Jeffs by Elissa Wall (WARNING: highly triggering stories of sexual abuse)

The Witness Wore Red: The 19th Wife Who Brought Polygamous Cult Leaders to Justice by Rebecca Musser

Lost Boy by Brent W. Jeffs (WARNING: graphic detail of molestation and rape)

Church of Lies by Flora Jessop (WARNING: very, very graphic detail of rape by a parent; also scenes of kidnap torture)

Shattered Dreams: My Life as a Polygamist’s Wife by Irene Spencer

 

 

Also, one by a woman who escaped the Westboro Baptist Church, Banished: Surviving My Years in the Westboro Baptist Church by Lauren Drain.

Documentaries


Jesus Camp (WARNING: Becky Fischer or however the fuck you spell her last name, I don’t care enough to look it up. Just listening to her talk makes me want to punch walls. Can be very troubling to watch if you’ve been in an ACE school [mention of the Christian and Bible pledges at one point — hearing them again makes my very bones want to escape my body] or a part of these Pentecostal rallies) Ugh, I’m sick to the stomach just thinking of this one. Available to watch on various paid outlets and…less legal ways.

Louis Theroux’s documentaries he did with families of the WBC: The Most Hated Family in America and the sequel, America’s Most Hated Family in Crisis. (WARNING: the stupidity and hatred in these could be hard to digest. Have an emergency supply of booze or cats to snuggle. whynotboth.gif)

For the Bible Tells Me So is about parents not being able to deal with gay children. (WARNING: derogatory terms for gay men and women and it can be hard to watch for people who have gone through such torment)

Religulous by Bill Mahr (hi-larious)

The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins

Enemies of Reason by Richard Dawkins (more about combating pseudoscience like astrology and illusionists)

Inside the Teen Mania: Christian Child Abuse Cult (uploaded to YouTube) (WARNING: it’s like boot camp, Fear Factor/Survivor kind of abuse)

The Fundamentalists: Religion or Lunacy? (3 part series on YouTube)

FLDS documentaries (just ’cause):

FLDS Warren Steed Jeffs – Twisted Man

Dangerous Cult Devotion Documentary (also mentions the Jim Jones mass suicide and other cults)

20/20 FLDS A House Divided

Basically, if you type in FLDS into YouTube, you can find loads of documentaries. I’m tired and slightly drunk. Good-bye for now.

 

 

 

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Unapologetic Heretic (4/8/17-4/9/17) — I stand with Egypt and against extremism.

Trigger warning: anything pertaining to fundamentalism in a negative light…’cause, duh? also inevitable bouts of swearing

Hopefully, I will make this a regular weekly, maybe biweekly segment, to discuss what I think the public needs to know and that I need to ridicule, about fundamentalism and extremism within the media today.

EDIT: The content below the red line was written out before the attacks on the Egyptian church happened. Please don’t think that I’m ignoring it, because it is surely heavy in my heart this morning. 

(this morning, 4/9/17)

Just received the news alerts on the Egyptian church bombings. I am quite hungover, so I apologize if this lapses into incoherent rage, but I felt like this needs to be addressed for its heinous nature.

I am not against people having faith. I believe in religious freedom. It’s when people use their faith to justify their bigotry, and this is definitely what happened. The Islamic State are terrorists to their own country and extremists to their own religion and I am deeply sorry to the Muslims, Christians, and Jews that are brave enough to renounce the IS for their wicked and corrupted actions.

I feel I can’t say or do enough. I can offer up my tears and anguish, but it still feels like a farce. Both the US and Middle Eastern countries are more fractured and divided than they ever have been by political, cultural, and socioeconomic strife.

The real enemy here is not these religions and faiths as a whole — it is the sick, twisted, and morally bankrupt extremists that think they kill and torture for the glory of their god. If anything, we need to learn that this could very well be a projection of the country you thought was tolerant and ethical if we let fundamentalists warp its governments and laws to suit their legalistic injustices.

I’m going to leave the original draft I wrote last night before this mess happened. If anything, I hope that my lame jokes make you laugh and make you feel a spark of happiness, even if it’s just in the space of that 5-second smile.

الحب، لا الخوف

Love, not fear. 

——————————————————————————————-

(original post last night, 4/8/17)

I bought the wrong type of CORD ASDFHGKHKL:

No double monitors for ultimate time-wasting yet. FUUUUUUUUU

This is where I highlight the news of the week as pertaining to lunacy and various crimes within fundamentalism. This is mainly about Christian fundamentalism, but if a story is of particular importance about other religions, I will try to feature it.

Getting my sources from religionnews.com, so this is probably going to be an adventure. Take each article with a pinch or can or two of salt.

Religious voices raised over Syria bombing by U.S.

Joy.

Time to put in some nominees for the 5 Biggest Assholes Of the Week!

From Marco Rubio:

“Be sure of this: The wicked will not go unpunished” Proverbs 11:21  ”

I’m not sure if this is a progressive message against the perpetrator of the chemical attack, or if it’s the usual “God will deliver his vengeance upon the land” or whatever trash.

There’s a true golden light among the glitter-bronzed shit though…

Shane Claiborne:

“If we really care about Syrians, we should welcome those ravaged by violence into our country.”

Susan Thistlethwaite:

“War can be ultimate distraction. Yet US has been ‘at war’ for nearly all of 21st c. Will it work this time? Probably. Americans love war.”

You’re going to make me start drinking before 4pm today, aren’t you?

How feminists have failed Christian women

Sigh.

Hold on.

giphy

 

That is some tasty fuckin’ blackberry merlot, Arbor Mist.

Right, back at it.

RNS: You believe young women today often struggle to grow into and embrace their womanhood. Why do you think this is?

AT: I think we’re facing a relational crisis for women today. So often we fail to lift each other up. We compare and compete and fail to see another woman’s success as success for all women.

In the church, we still are locked into systems and structures that prevent women from flourishing and sharing the fullness of who they are within their congregations. We relegate women to women’s ministry, rather than allow them to lead across all ministry. We’ve made huge strides in the last 50 years, so I’m hopeful. But we still have a long way to go to see women’s place in society, and in the church, fully realized.”

Breathe in.

Breathe out.

Drink in…*slurp*

Dear Allison Trowbridge…

It is not my fucking job as a woman, nor is it a job of men, to lift you up. And for you to expect women to give you a motivational boost solely because you are a fellow vagina-owner, is selfish. Maybe if I actually knew who you are and we had an understanding of each other past our sexual characteristics and biology, we would form the kind of relationship where we would “lift each other up”.

I agree with the second part of that paragraph. Except that this is an issue that’s very subjective and certain contributions to modern feminism may not amount to much in one woman’s eyes. I personally think if a contribution was enough to spark inspiration and debate, it would count as a part of the whole.

Who exactly is locking you into those systems and structures, however? If you go to a church where you are expected by the congregation to fit into where they think you should go, I think you should tell them that you aren’t happy with this and want things to change. Again with the “we”. You’re not going to get very far if you don’t make the change happen. Is it the “old-fashioned” attitudes of your ministry that is disallowing women from having a bigger influence in the ministry or do you just think that’s the reason holding women back?

It’s very interesting that you would use the term “women’s place”. Women have been inserting themselves into society, regardless if people were reserving them a spot or not. “Place in society”? Society isn’t a valet service. You say you want people’s consideration of women within society to change, but I think you still have your own reservations for what you, as an individual, truly want.

Well, that went on forever.

*sluuuuuurrrrrp*

Also…

“Icing is enticing, but nobody wants to eat a whole cake of it.”.

But…icing is the…what? Who was this chick’s editor, E.L. James?

Still don’t see how feminism is hurting you because you’re a Christian…

RNS: But it’s not just on women. Men often hold women back, right? For example, Mike Pence took heat for adhering to the “Billy Graham rule,” which some believe marginalizes women. What is your view of that practice, as a Christian woman and leader?

AT: You know what, I respect and admire the spirit with which Vice President Pence has made that decision—we need more public figures demonstrating that they honor their marriage. But I don’t agree with his methodology.”

A man refusing to eat meals with other women other than their wives is not honor.  It is either 1) a show of how mistrusting and jealous his wife is (think about it: if a husband forbid his wife from eating with other men, would this be okay?) 2) he, himself, doesn’t think that women other than his wife deserve to speak candidly with him at all in any environment, food or not. After all, he already has a slot to put his change, why would he need to talk to any other woman?

Oh, sorry. Was that sexist?

Did I just drink a whole bottle of wine?

…shutup.

And let’s check some other media outlets…

For the absolute hell of it…let’s go to Fox News. The parody news that’s actually a news broadcast.

Exclusive: House Republicans call on Trump to keep religious liberty pledge

Will you never learn?

2017-04-08 19_06_39-Exclusive_ House Republicans call on Trump to keep religious liberty pledge _ Fo

OH BOY I SURE AM GOING TO CLICK ON THAT ONE

Careful, now. Get close enough to the screen, my sarcasm could take yer eye on out.

Also, “religious liberty”? *snort*

Not only does this guy give a link to his book, there’s also a tie-in clause to feature his book and the “read the rest of this column” directs to his own website.

“‘My administration will do everything in its power to defend and protect religious liberty in our land,’ the president said at the National Prayer Breakfast.

When he campaigned for the White House he stated that the ‘first priority of my administration will be to preserve and protect our religiously liberty.'”

That’s either a typo on Todd’s part, or Trump is, as he ever was, a lying buffoon.

Attention, dear Dead Horse Thrashers of America: Religious liberty is not liberty of any merit when it is just Christian liberty and rejecting other religions. What’s the word for that? I swore, I had it on the tip of my tongue…

FUUUUUUUUUUcking over people because they aren’t white and/or straight and/or female.

 

Finishing up the post on April 9th, let’s mock what CNN has to say. Because I’m pissed off and I need to yell at something. Get ready for another lashing, Seabiscuit.

THIS WEEK, IN STUPID NEWS:

Haley on Russia and Iran: ‘I don’t think anything is off the table’

Do not make an under-the-table joke, do not make an under-the-table joke…

Well, seeing as the Islamic State BOMBED AN EGYPTIAN CHURCH, I think we already knew that, sugartits. I can call you that, because I’m female. (Joking.)

Bat reportedly found in packaged Fresh Express salad mix

“Um, honey?”

“What?”

“I think…there’s a bat in this…salad mix.”

*beat*

“I guess you could say…the salad’s gone bat. Geddit, bat?”

…*divorce*

Camera pans to cheese puffs at Spicer briefing

…do what now?

“In an awkward moment Friday, White House press secretary Sean Spicer abruptly asked that his daily on-camera press briefing be “off camera,” causing the pool camera to turn away from Spicer as he spoke.

Viewers of networks carrying the briefing watched as the pool camera panned right and focused on a big container of cheese puffs that was sitting on a table.”

…is this real life?

Sorry, I just…gotta…

#Cheesepuffs2020

I don’t think anything’s going to top that, in terms of “What? no, wait, what?” news anyway, so tune in later on Burning My Church Clothes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Admitting Ignorance in the SJW Movement and Feminism

I tend to take pride in how knowledgeable I am on a vast variety of topics. So much that it’s to my detriment because I try to blend in with the majority opinion rather than read up on the issues myself and form my own opinions.

I will admit my ignorance now of the SJW movement and express what I know of it. This is probably going to be an acknowledgement of the biases I have encountered on the subject rather than those that are actually apart of it.

Feminism

More often than not on Reddit/Imgur, the accepted interpretation of feminism is “equality of both men and women”. Tumblr, however, gets a reputation for being mainly overpopulated by the extremist kind of feminism, also known as the “feminazi”. It’s from this branch of the SJW tree that spawned the terms “white male privilege”, “mansplaining”, “cisgendered”, “fat-shaming”, etc.

I can say, for myself, that I believe women and men should be held to same courtesies and the same punishments under government law. As in:

–both should be paid equally for work done*

–there should be maternity leave and paternity leave

women should be charged prison sentences for the same amount of years as men for sexual crimes against any gender and especially against children 

women should be considered capable of abusing and raping men in a court of law 

–since women are allowed to serve in the military, they should be eligible to draft into service (yes, I am aware what I am implying, especially during the overseas conflict raging on right now)

–women should have access to purchase birth control from any clinic and be allowed to choose if they wish to terminate a pregnancy without mandated sonograms; there should also be also be laws drawn up for forbidding insurance companies from refusing to cover birth control because it hasn’t been specifically indicated by ICD10 and CPT codes to prevent pregnancy*

*Yes, I am aware that certain physiological feats of males are biologically superior to females in terms of endurance and strength.

*Birth control is also used to control the female hormones and lessen the painful side effects of PMS including weight gain, cramps, headache, acne, and numerous other effects that are unique to each woman.

Genders and Sexual Orientations

Some SJWs claim that there are more than two genders and twice as many orientations. It has been, if I may, “memed to death” by the social media that abhor such claims of pseudoscience.

I’m led to believe that since no true scientific evidence can prove that there are “binary genders”, that it is all a farce.

I’m not saying that you can’t claim that you are this mystical binary gender. I’m saying you can’t prove it. Let’s put it like this, most of the articles I’m finding are full of confirmation bias and the only article that might have had any clout was one about studies suggesting that there is a spectrum based on a psychological understanding of gender.

I tend to use gender neutral pronouns anyway, because any fellow A.C.E. survivor like myself knows what a true misogynistic portrayal of world events is like.

However, if I’m filling out your medical history as the medical assistant putting your information in the electronic health records, I cannot put down genderqueer squidkin. Were you born with a penis or a vagina? Do you still have either or did you switch? I don’t honestly care if you did, but I do need to know so I can accurately record your data. You may feel like a woman (a wuh uh oh) but I need to put down the hormones that helped you “blossom” and the doctor that changed your “operating system” (I’m full of a weird metaphors today.)

As for sexual orientations…can people just want to fuck what they want to fuck as long as it’s consensual and not with kids?

As for Michael Pence, he clearly has never eaten a woman in his life, so why are we concerned?

Oh, wait…”eaten with”.

I guess that means I have to erase the above statement. Yeah, wouldn’t want to give you false information about a politician. *cough*

Triggers

You know, once on a forum, I put up a poll to see how the demographic of the members expressed LGBTQA statistically. I received a private message pointing out that I hadn’t included asexual and it had offended them.

Surely if you’re asexual…you wouldn’t even have an orientation technically? I’m not honestly sure how I feel about asexuality in terms of science. And after some brief research, I’m still not sure.

I can understand how the material presented in these kind of blogs can cause stress triggers and I’m trying to warn beforehand before I write on some of the more depressing subjects.

It’s the stupid things that annoy me. Like “cisgendered” and how people are being pressured into introducing themselves in this fashion. Which I will never do because it’s got to be the most retarded thing to be born out of radical SJW posts. If you can rationalize such a thing, please go on right ahead in the comment section.

What I don’t understand is how this type of radical obsession with “offended because it exists” is becoming the moral code for arguments among a community. I don’t believe in censorship, at least in the way extremist SJWs and mothers hell-bent on blaming video game violence want to censor media.

For instance, I thought the Tomb Raider 2012 reboot was a move in the wrong goddamn direction. This is stemming from personal bias, I won’t lie about that, but it’s incredulous to consider that this version of Lara Croft was a progressive female icon because she could survive and prevail against a possible rapist. 

And you know what? Maybe I liked her ridiculously large breasts that defied all laws of nipple-chaffing against the walls she shimmied across (seriously, is she wearing a Teflon bra?) But she wasn’t her chest size. She wasn’t ashamed for being sexy and was also intellectual without apology. And now she’s turned into a B-cup glutton for masochism that just pants, cries, and goes “I can do this” without any following character development.

That went on a tangent, sorry. It’s just that I need to express that one sect of a demographic shouldn’t decide for a whole and that I refuse to cram myself under one umbrella for the sake of having pointless arguments with no basis or credible evidence other than “I am female, obey me or get triggered”.

I can only hope by clearly stating my thoughts on the topic that I can expect respectful insights or at the very least have some entertaining drivel to rip into for a subsequent blog post.

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Diary of a Blasphemer (4/5/17) – A.C.E. and IFB destroyed my mental health

Trigger: Depression, guilt, mentions of suicidal thoughts, isolation, loneliness, swearing

This is a segment of the blog where I get all deep and depressing.

Yay.

Ready to cry? No?

Well, fuck off then, ya happy bastard, because it’s about to happen.

 

I have a very warped sense of guilt.

It’s not easily explained without telling you just how devastating a “learning” environment A.C.E. (for those uninformed, cliquez ici)  perpetuates toward their perverted standards of “Christian character”.

It’s not just the incomplete curriculum, it’s the ridiculous militant order of an A.C.E. school striving to ensure student obedience by force. I would also state that girls are more likely to suffer because the code of conduct and dogmatic teachings are misogynistic. My particular school was also an Independent Fundamental Baptist church, a fact that I would not realize (or understand, to be precise), until just a few months ago.

I was a Christian up until I was 19-years-old. I honestly thought that I was happy within my faith and that I had forgiven the things that happened in my past.

Repression is not forgiveness.

I left the A.C.E school before I turned 15 in the summer of ’08. My first true act of rebellion before I started public high school was blue highlights. In the A.C.E. school, you couldn’t have vibrantly-colored or “punk”-styled hair. (Though I did certainly annoy the principal when I dyed my hair black in the 8th grade. Hey, black is a natural color.) My main faults with the school at that time was that I had begun questioning the legalism of the school. Strangely enough, I did the PACEwork without much thought of the lies that were scattered all through the texts.

I was still a Christian all throughout high school. I prided myself on being a “tolerant” Christian that believed that all people that believed on Christ were saved, regardless of worldly sins.

The irony of it is that I still detested atheists. I tended to judge people based on what they believed and decided from that if I should be friends with them.

What’s that called? Oh, right. Arrogance.

I still feel guilt for all the people I dismissed because of my clouded, narrow thinking. I actually managed to convince myself that I was happy and “cured”. Even after I had been in a behavioral hospital in the 11th grade and I was on a whole new mix of medications (at that time, I was only diagnosed with clinical depression and generalized anxiety disorder — either my bipolar disorder wasn’t “caught” or it hadn’t truly manifested by 17-years of age), I thought that I had been “stabilized”.

Pills aren’t miracles. Yet, I deluded myself into thinking I had been righted by medicine and religion.

In the second semester of 11th grade, I was being a scarily persistent stalker of a boy I had a crush on. I would constantly send him emails like we were in a relationship and it was usually one-sided. I cringe myself inside out thinking of it now.

I had been doing this for six months before I realized it was really fucking creepy. That poor guy. I feel so sorry still. And people were telling me straight to my face that I was being hopelessly creepy, but I just tuned them out.

I honestly think I had been misdiagnosed since my breakdown of ’11. Stalking behavior? Nearly “euphoric” bouts of stupid silliness? Certain, uh, compulsions that were starting to get painful?

I was having one large goddamn cycle of manic episodes triggered by the breakdown. I didn’t put this together until several years later. It wasn’t that big of a stretch. My grandfather was a raging bipolar and my aunt is a super compulsive, narcissistic bipolar, and my dad is just an asshole.

Also, recently. I’ve started hearing things.

Ugh. How many more initials can I add to my disorders list before they wrap me in a sleeve suit and dope me up with Thorazine?!

Where is the causal link? I mean, the asshole father had his fair share of damage. The dismissive “I’m a nurse, but not yours” mother stuck in her own broadsword through my spine.

How about…being isolated to your own depleting sanity for 8 hours of a day for five days a week, for 30-40 weeks out of year? And you get a nice decorative prison cell with a Bible to sleep on and some thumbtacks to think about drilling into your own face constantly.

And you work. You do loads of menial, tedious, mind-numbing fill-in-the-blank Jesus stories with comics featuring Ace Ventura and Becky Christfucker or whatever the hell their names were.

You reel off the numerous Christian characteristics that you aren’t and will never be because you barely feel alive. Dutiful. Diligent. Merciful. Virtuous. Charitable. Patient.  

Righteous. 

  Faithful. 

  Joyful. 

Wrathful.

Spiteful.

Jealous.

 Guilty. Guilty. Guilty. Guilty. Guilty. Guilty. 

 Worthless. 

 Faithless. 

  Joyless. 

  Lifeless. 

  Suicidal. 

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Drowning in Doctrine – 1 – Predisposition

1

Predisposition

I was born in Rocky Mouth, North Carolina on June 2nd, 1993. It had been a Wednesday and I emerged from my mother’s womb screaming during a hail storm. I guess that should have been an omen of things to come.

My mother had been in labor for twelve hours before they decided she had to have a C-section. After those twelve hours of my big head banging on her spinal column and my already stubborn self refusing to turn the right way round, she was pissed.

“Why didn’t you do that to start with?!” she had yelled, according to my father.

But finally I was lifted out and squalling for the first time and I wouldn’t stop for…how old am I now?

Kidding.

“Looks like we have a brand new Tarheel!” the doctor had yelled, once again angering my mom, the Virginia-born nurse.

The family pictures detail the passing of the baby Chelsea from the ecstatic, protective grip of my father, to the equally excited but clumsier arms of my half-brother. And while the formal pictures of a giggling baby in a pink dress might be adorable, over the next few months I would veto any thought of more children after me.

I was so colicky as a baby that my mother’s post-partum depression took a lot out of her. While my father was doting and affection toward his two children, he soon showed his true colors as a husband. Accounts from my mother as she raised me from infancy to toddlerhood painted dad as the self-proclaimed patriarchal head of the family. My brother’s upbringing was very strict, almost like dad still believed it was the early 60s rather than the mid-90s. The family videos will dictate a smiling boy overjoyed at receiving his Super Nintendo and his seemingly good relationship with his father, but there was drama developing off-screen.

A tryst was beginning to crack the patriarchal dynamic. My mom didn’t believe in strict authoritative parenting as she still harbors resentment toward her own parents. Only once has she ever revealed to me the extent of her childhood trauma when she was in a rage trying to get me to go to school: “You want me to beat you with a whip? That’s what Daddy used to do to us! You want me to do that to you?” My dad had an even worse childhood – manic father beating his wife, favoring his son over his daughters, even rumors of infidelity and molestation. His parenting styles might not have been as extreme as his father’s, but our dad inherited his father’s idealization of racism and misogyny.

Unbeknownst to my naïve 4-year-old mind, my brother and father were having a feud that would eventually lead Will* to move in with his biological mother. One school night, Will had snuck out to go to the movies with a girl he was dating. While the fact that he had snuck out of the house may have seem like the real reason for the fight, it was ultimately because the girl in question was Black. My father still opposes mixed race couples to this day, though he will refute this claim if asked. After all, why admit to your own faults when you can blame it on somebody else. This would become a theme through pretty much the rest of my childhood (and life, probably).

After Will moved out, the family decided to move back to Henry County, Virginia so we could be closer to the family. I was enrolled in the local primary school half-way through the year. I remember that my mother had written a letter to my best friend, Kelly, telling her that I was moving. All I can remember of my pre-school and kindergarten days in North Carolina is waiting at the bus stop, being yelled at for not wanting to raise my hand and instead wanting to come up to the desk to ask a question, and that one day I stepped in dog crap before I got on the bus and my teachers not finding out until one girl beside me said, “Ew, it smells like dog poop!” (Those sneakers had to be quarantined to the backyard and eventually the trashcan.)

I started kindergarten with Mrs. Wells, who was quite bitchy for a kindergarten teacher, if I’m honest. I even knew this as a spry five-year-old because I didn’t really want to talk to her at all. Such bouts of non-talkativeness meant I had a permanent desk set aside for me in the principal’s office. I remember being yelled at for not paying attention as I played dolls with the scissors and glue rather than use them for the assignment. Eventually, my non-talkativeness warranted corporal punishment, which is something I still don’t understand to this day. (This was public school, might I remind you.)

I couldn’t be spanked on the school campus so dad had to take me home and spank me. As a cognitive-thinking adult, I would think spanking to combat a child’s refusal to talk to their teachers as a good way to make sure they developed an anxiety disorder later in life. (Guess who’s on crazy pills!) Rather than asking me why I wouldn’t talk to the teacher or maybe seeing early signs of anxious behavior didn’t cross the principal’s mind. These days kids as young as five are given ADHD and anxiety meds, but back then it was just being a little spoiled brat that needed to be spanked.

If anything’s worse than spanking, it’s the rationalizing. “Why am I causing you physical pain on some of the most sensitive flesh on your fragile, child body? Because it’s God’s will.” No, my dad wasn’t quite that literal or brutally honest, but it’s still ludicrous to think children will fall in line without resentment from being hit. I do not believe it was child abuse because my dad very much did not want to cause me harm for his enjoyment. If anything, I resent the principal and teacher who couldn’t just sit me down and tell me what exactly I was doing wrong. I get in trouble for talking, but now I’m not talking enough? My five-year-old mind is not going to understand this with a spanking.

By this time, the family was living in a small apartment. By age 7, I was already conning my way out of going to school. I won’t lie, I was a brat. My mom would literally have to dress me and drag me to the car. This would be another theme for years to come. My mom was obsessed with getting me to take vitamins and I was still getting morning sippy-cups of some nutritional formulaic concoction. I never really had a problem taking pills because I had to do it since I was very young. My mom, the nurse, was convinced that pills could fix everything.

“Mom, I have a headache.”

“Aspirin in the cabinet.” she would tell me, annoyed that I had interrupted her all-important crossword puzzle.

“Mom, I have really bad cramps.”

“Ibuprofen in the cabinet.”

“Mom, I’m depressed and I want to kill myself because you paid for me to go to a Christian academy that condemns me to hell for being depressed and wanting to kill myself.”

“You’re still going to school tomorrow. Take some Excedrin.”

You get the gist. Maybe I exaggerated. Just a tad.

Back to the timeline, my mom believed in medicine except when it was medication for mental disorders. I was still a relatively happy kid even if I was a bit gullible and naïve. I made friends easily at the daycare center I went to every morning and afternoon. My mom would take me there in the mornings before she had to go to work and the bus would take the kids at the center to school.

In first grade, I had a wonderful teacher, Mrs. Coleman. I admit I was teacher’s pet, you know, that kid that prefers to eat with the teacher at lunch like the “loser” that she was. This would be yet another theme of my life because it always seemed like I got along with teachers and older kids and adults than I did peers my own age. I wouldn’t say I was mature for my age because my room always looked like a bomb exploded in it (still does, in fact, in time of writing this). I would meet several kids that I would remember later in public high school and they would all regard me as the “snobby” private school kid that was “too good for public middle school”. (Thanks, Mom!)

Second grade was the first grade where I would have two teachers. Mrs. Edmund was my home room teacher that taught math, science, and history. Mrs. Carter was the English teacher. Let’s just say I was not teacher’s pet in her class. More like teacher’s court jester. Something in my demeanor annoyed the hell out of her and she liked to smack me over the head with her answer book when I did something wrong. However abrasive she might have been, she was actually the first teacher that saw potential in my writing ability. I did like to write stories of princesses and more embarrassingly scenarios of early 2000s pop stars.

Yes, seven-year-old me was already writing fanfiction about Britney Spears and N*SYNC. There were even cassette tapes I recorded. Oh, God, my cringe is cringing. NO, I do not still have them, don’t even ask.

The first time I was really in trouble was when my teacher found out that my mom was doing my homework. I totally take the blame though because I just did not do homework. Even at seven-years-old, I was already anti-homework. I think my mom was just exasperated with my laziness (which I don’t blame her for) and did it herself. Well, Dad soon found about this and I don’t really remember him confronting her about it (though I might have blocked it from my mind as I did with most of their fights about me).

That was the atmosphere of the house as a young child, my parents arguing. They both fought over how they were disciplining me. Dad wanted Mom to stop spoiling me with junk food and McDonalds, Mom was angry because he was being over-controlling. I remember one night my Dad ripped the phone out of my hand in which I was talking to Mom. I think I was asking for a McDonalds Happy Meal and he was soon yelling at Mom through the phone that I had already had too much that day.

This would began my Dad’s harassment of my weight. At seven-years-old, I was already overweight and Dad constantly said that he was bullied for being fat when he was younger. He would talk about my cousin’s weight problem and say, “I would never let my daughter get that way.” How ironic was it that he was trying to save me from being bullied when he was turning into a bully himself. I remember car trips where I was subjected to his lectures and I was scream at him to stop talking about Mom that way. I can still remember the times where he would slam his hand onto my knee as hard as he could. He always said sorry afterwards and how he loved me but the memories are still sore patches even as I write this.

Probably the scariest thing he ever did was during one winter. I went outside onto the carport in several jackets to keep warm because I just wanted to breathe in the fresh air. This was when we had moved into the new house. During this time, the Jennifer Short kidnapping was still fresh in people’s minds and my dad was enraged to find me outside without any supervision in plain view of the road, which was how Jennifer was kidnapped. He dragged me into the house and threw me away from him, slamming the door, making me jump with the loud BANG. I cowered down and dragged myself backwards by my hands as Dad swung his arm back preparing to hit me. This was not a spanking, this was nearly plain abuse.

But then as I cried for him to stop and “please, please, don’t hit me!” — I saw the red fog clear his eyes and he even realized what exactly he was ready to do. I wouldn’t realize it until several years later, but in that moment, he must have realized that he nearly repeated his father’s sin.

By this time, I was in the third grade. I had a grandmotherly type teacher named Mrs. Goad that would read us Little House on the Prairie during story time. Three students of her class were chosen to take a more advanced English class with Mrs. Prillaman. Reading and spelling came naturally to me even if I didn’t exactly understand composition just yet. Even though I was good at reading, I still didn’t really enjoy it for a hobby. We did have this program at school where we would read a Scholastic-published book and take online tests for credit. If a student finished the set book list for the year, they would receive an award at the end of the year. I received one in grades one and two, but didn’t bother for grades three or four.

I actually attempted to read the fifth Harry Potter book but I thought at the time that it was boring. I was like, “Why is this such a popular book?” I didn’t realize at the time that it was apart of a whole series. (How stupid was I?) I also had a friend that lent me an “adult” fiction book (no, not like that, you perv). I believe it was either a Dean Koontz or Stephen King novel. I guess I just felt so cool that I was reading this “forbidden book” for my age group even though I didn’t know what exactly was going on.

I distantly remember the first book I ever actually finished. It was a book about a boy concerned that he was somehow turning into a girl because he licked his elbow. I enjoyed reading aloud and giving the characters voices. Even later when I would read the Harry Potter books, I would adapt my voices to mimic the actors that played them in the films (no, I will not give you my awful Hagrid impression – it sounded like a really fake Scottish accent and as if I had a sock in my throat).

Third grade breezed by and I was excited to be starting fourth grade. I somehow thought I would be cooler as a fourth grader, I don’t know. I definitely faked a lot of things to my friends to seem like I was cool. I had quite a few friends, even if some of them were only friends with me so they could score “cookie money” (the cafeteria had these monster chocolate chip cookies for 50c). I was definitely falling down the ranks of “cool” because I was chubby and, I don’t know, wafted this scent of “loser” to people, not sure. Mindy* had a sleep-over one summer for her birthday and I was invited along with three other of her friends. I say her friends specifically because most of them were only nice to me out of association.

I suppose I was just odd to them. We were all ready to transition into that final stage just before puberty. I had a friend in third grade tell me in confidence that she had just gotten her first period. She was taller than me and while not as chubby as I was, she was already a C-cup. I would find out later that mensuration depended heavily on weight rather than age, about 100 lbs. Surely, I should have been begun my period by that stipulation, but I guess I was just barely toppling 100 (surprisingly). While I had a bit of a stomach, I still hadn’t developed enough breast tissue to warrant use of even a training bra.

Anyway, during this sleepover, Mindy wanted us to all camp out in the yard in a tent. Problem was, it was late July and it was stifling outside. We all voted to sleep in the house rather which upset Mindy, but her mother agreed that was way too hot for four girls to sleep in a tent. Mindy soon got over it and then dared each of us to take off our clothes and run around the house. Her mother, somehow, didn’t see a problem with this. Even with little breasts, I was already developing hair in places I didn’t want to reveal to the world, so I stayed clothed while they streaked around the house.

I will admit that I felt uncomfortable with them being naked around because it was making me feel…strange. I was awfully too interested in the female body for a eight-year-old and I admit that I didn’t watch rap videos on MTV and BET just for the music. I wouldn’t even be that into boys until later, but like many girls my age, I was already…discovering things about my own body. I liked to watch a certain scene of a Charlie’s Angels movie way too much and stayed up to watch Spike TV and certain unedited BET music videos (you know the ones). I didn’t even know what the terms “lesbian” or “bisexual” even meant and in the early 2000s, it was still highly stigmatized in the South.

Fourth grade started and I had two teachers again, Mrs.  Mitchell and Mrs. Pace. Somehow, the school had crammed 25 of the loudest kids into one class (yes, I was loud, at the time) but we all punished as a class for the same offenses. If Mrs. Carter was just a bit irritated from time to time, Mrs. Mitchell, by all accounts, was an absolute child-eating bitch. I actually began to just enjoy her ongoing rants because they were far more entertaining than Virginia History. She was scream for thirty minutes before even getting to the lesson of the day. Bipolar, much?

Mrs. Pace wasn’t much better. I admit that I wasn’t an attentive student by any means, but she knew how to embarrass the hell out of me when I was falling behind in lessons. There was a bully in front of me that would threaten to tell her if I was still doing my homework from the night before if I didn’t give him a dollar. I was already being shaken up by a Mafioso at nine-years-old, what a jackass! I would be confused by Mrs. Pace’s version of multiplication where the extra 0s were “goose eggs” that the previous line had hatched. Pretty sure just saying, “You have to start a new line with an extra zero every time” would have processed better instead of fucking eggs, but I digress.

I had English lessons with Mrs. Pace and it’s a point that I can’t remember how she taught composition of paragraphs because she probably had a retarded way of doing that as well. The one thing she ever taught that I remember was that you can’t write past the margins of notebook paper, nor can you hyphen a word at the end of a line to begin the next line with-

out paying attention to syllables (see what I did there?) We had to write our spelling words in cursive which I just didn’t get at all and it always looked like I was having a stroke when I tried. I practiced doing it while copying notes of the projector and got tattled on by Mafia Dickhead because I was getting behind. Now I’m getting yelled at for trying to practice cursive, fuck me then.

The P.E. coach obviously hated his job and took it out on us by making us play soccer. Just imagined an uncoordinated chicken running in circles with its head chopped off and you get the gist of that experience. I was really good at head-butting the ball though. With my face, not so much. Baseball was equally dreadful. I once received a fast ball right to the sternum that by all means could have nearly broken a rib, but the coach just told me to sit it out. Thanks, Coach. I’ll just sit here and massage this goose egg that’s quickly becoming a third breast over here.

Presidential fitness was the evil test concocted by Satan-worshippers on the school board that dictated making students run the mile. Yeah, okay, I get that children should get exercise, but it’s just a little bit more than completely embarrassing when you’re nearly dying and having to walk with the fellow chubby kids down that final lap of shame. I actually could run pretty fast, but my problem was stamina (and McNuggets).

I still went to the daycare after school and something had happened between me and my “friends”. I had unknowingly become unpopular by…breathing? Existing? Did I hum too much, what? Suddenly, my best friends were now my bullies. Mindy and Sandra*, who had been my best friend since first grade at the daycare, were now regarding me as a convenient target. I was being greeted on the bus by Sandra’s knobby elbows punching me hard in my thighs. What the hell had I done? Why was I suddenly being poked, pinched, and laughed at?

This whole vicious circle finally broke the arc when they invited me over to the basketball court one day at the daycare after school. They wanted to apologize for what they were doing, or at least that’s what they told me. No, evidently I was deserving of some punishment for…still don’t know. Or maybe they were just bored. But then they suddenly began a spanking line, where one would take turns hitting me as hard as they could on my ass and then switch off. After all four of them had had their turn, I was crying uncontrollably and I told the teacher on them. I couldn’t sit down at all for the rest of the day. I don’t think I ever told my parents (they probably would have said I’d deserved it – after all, you know, the buttocks were fair game for corporal punishment).

At  home, tensions were higher than ever. Mom would always bitch about Dad, Dad would bitch to me about Mom. As a child, I didn’t know that this was wrong of them and even took sides, telling each parent what the other had said about them. They were fairly conservative and didn’t believe in divorce (though both were divorcees, however, their previous exes had cheated on them). Dad was still racist and forbid me from watching BET and listening to rap music. (So, of course, I did it anyway.) Even as a child, I saw through his racist bullshit even when he was pissed that most of my friends in third grade were Black. The excuses would start when I got onto him about it. I still tune out any sentence beginning with “I’m not racist, but…” because I refuse to fall in line with his bigotry over something as senseless as judging people for things they had no control over.

However, if it’s preached to a child enough, they will began to think like their parents. It is because of his racist epithets and opinions that I do still have racist idealizations and therefore, still get nervous when I’m around black people. As well as racism, he was quick to correct me about homosexuality, constantly bringing up Sodom and Gomorrah from the Bible. Even back then, I was questioning while a loving God would destroy a whole town for just one sin (don’t get me started on The Great Flood). I was already being damned for questioning the “Word of the Lord”.

My mom wanted to send me to a Christian academy because I was screaming at stuffed animals. I liked to role-play as a teacher in my room and I would put my stuffed animals on my bed like a forum of students. Mrs. Mitchell’s yelling was more influential than annoying because that’s what I thought teachers got to do. They got to yell at people and write bad grades on papers. So, that’s what I role-played as a teacher, screaming at the top of my lungs at these stuffed animals. My mom soon overheard me and then asked the question that be the ultimate catalyst for events to come, “Is this what your teacher does everyday?” She was horrified and decided that one bad teacher was enough to warrant putting me into a private school.

*changed my brother’s name out of respect for his own family; other names are to protect identities because they’re probably going to be pissed if they read this anyway

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Drowning in Doctrine – Preface: The Glass Cage

Preface

The Glass Cage

You know that hot, sickly feeling of regret that feels like your stomach just bottomed out and is leaking shame all through your body? I walked into the spare reading room where the principal sat looking morose. The supervisor that had led me in wasn’t smiling either which was rare for her normally glowing, Christ-like demeanor. While Mrs. Cook had a truly Christian attitude of forgiveness and tolerance about her, Mrs. Karack enforced the strict code of conduct to the letter.

I had been in this situation too many times to count. It wasn’t unusual by the eighth grade at this point for me to be receiving detentions for not doing my work or “mis-scoring” (as in ACE schools, students scored their own work). I went to this school five days a week and was subjected to eight hours of continual Christian doctrine. When asked if I go to church, I would say, “Yeah, seven days a week” because if there wasn’t work at school, I had homework and ranting car sermons from my father. Needless to say, I was tired of it but I couldn’t exactly reveal such blasphemy, as to be tired from being taught the “Word of the Lord” was tantamount to being disobedient and worthy of hell.

So, I sat across the table from Mrs. Karack as I waited for my sentencing. I honestly would have rather been beaten than made to feel like a worthless sinner, which was her forte. I had been in her office with the volleyball coach just as the season was ending. I had loved Coach Peters because he actually believed in my abilities which was something that I didn’t even get from my parents. He had rewarded me a ribbon toward the end of the school term for Best Effort, a ribbon which went mysteriously missing from my cubical and I still think the culprit to be the very tyrant set on “breaking me in” like a stubborn donkey as she coldly glared at me.

Mrs. Karack finally started to rip through me like a sheet of paper and I broke apart as she suspected. Is it me or did she seem to smile as I cried so hard I nearly choked? At the time, I cried because I believed I had failed God and my teachers because that’s the school wanted me to believe. I felt constant guilt because I couldn’t be happy because of this depression demon lurking inside of me. I was taught that depression wasn’t a chemical imbalance, rather that it was a faith imbalance. I tried to tell my mom, but it was just another excuse to stay home to her. I told the principal and it might as well have been an insult. “I think part of fighting depression is to believe that God will show the way and to have faith in Him.” she would say dismissively. “You need to pray and hope that things will change.”

I prayed. There would be days where I would cry at my desk and pray for God to make me happy. I would apologize over and over again for being miserable and wait for a miracle to happen. I fed the gaping hole inside me with junk food and sugary soda because I thought it would make me happy. In my darkest hours, I dragged the blade of a pair of scissors, slicing open my arms just to feel something other than this gaping chasm of loneliness and guilt. I was in a glass cage watching the happy, smiling people enjoying life while I slowly drowned in this never-ending church service. In chapel we learned hymns like “My Cup Runneth Over” and I sang listlessly, feeling so ironically empty and numb that I actually checked if I still had a pulse from time to time.

I thought of suicide on a daily basis. The only thing really stopping me was my fear of actually dying and fear of not being accepted into Heaven. I would be too afraid to kill myself, but I wanted to be dead. Better dead than being imprisoned in your own mind. My thoughts were constantly full of my parents fighting, my mom’s dismissal of my anguish, my dad’s constant criticism of my weight and eating issues, school work constantly reminding me of the Christian qualities I didn’t possess, the belligerent insults from my peers. Was public school really worse than this?

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