When Christians step on SAHMs to impress the world

This the flipside of my fiskpost.  The Christians in question (at least people identifying as such) are people making posts and blogs around Calvinistic and evangelical parts of the internet about leaving a particular “misogynist” and “abusive” megachurch.  I can’t fisk any of the numerous examples because it would just make me cry too hard to type. This is instead a cri de coeur.

You see, the common thread is not claims of abusive authority or poor treatment of women in the church–the common thread with all too many of these people is despising SAHMs as “not being all God wants them to be”.

They have a consistent pattern of complaining about pressure in said megachurch for women to SAHM. They even go on to notice that actual SAHMs in the church are tired/brittle/stressed/overwhelmed.  But do they, I dunno, HELP OUT?  Do they even {insert unladylike epithets here} think about organizing some structured, consistent respite system for those SAHMs?

Nah, they just left all those dumb broads hanging in the breeze because those women were too stupid and brainwashed to see that they really needed to be out doing endless missions work while their kids (oh wait, they weren’t supposed to have the kids, they get in the way of BEING ANYWHERE GOD WANTS YOU TO BE AS LONG AS IT IS NEVER EVER EVER YOUR OWN HOUSE) were presumably in school or daycare or imaginary. Or presumably those women would somehow not be as stressed and tired if they’d just go get three or four degrees and a “career”.

These people leaving the church in several cases aren’t attending any church, not even a liberal church.  They’ve cut off contact themselves from the church folk they used to know.  And the whole time they were in said megachurch, they saw this vale of suffering and their response was anything but supporting the women who liked staying home and wanted to do the best they could at it.  They found all kinds of ministries and little fiefdoms of power within the church hierarchy to chase or gain access to, but mysteriously not anything that involved serious, concentrated efforts towards providing womanly support for the (mostly young and isolated) SAHMs in the church.  Even among the women who claimed to be oppressed by idolization of SAHMs, none of them valued the domestic life for itself.  They had nothing positive to say about women who really wanted to do that.

This side of American Christianity is “triggering” and threatening to me on a deep personal level in ways that the standard American pioneer-wife SAHM narrative simply isn’t.  It may be misguided and dangerous, but it at least is connected to the idea that women might like their homes, their families and being with their families in said homes.  The flipside, the people who see the damaged SAHMs and don’t respond in love, but only with disgust and sneering, that’s so much worse.  It’s terrible and cruel far beyond any pioneer wife going it alone stuff because it essentially claims that something is wrong with a woman for wanting to be at home at all.

And the really crazy making part is that these people think it’s holier for married American women to go on missions…to countries where most of the women stay home and hang out with other women.  Or to have social work jobs securing housing and welfare benefits for…women from cultures where it’s normal to stay home with little kids.  Or to pursue “ministry”, because we get such great results for the church catholic when men mindlessly pursue power in the church at any cost, why not have women do that too.

I don’t mention this misery as often precisely because it’s a klaxon-level tell that the Christian in question is mostly interested in assuring the secular world that they aren’t the wrong kind of Christian (conservatively oriented), why they hate women staying home just as much as anyone sensible would!  They know that women with BRAINS and MOXIE can’t be trapped in domestic prisons.

You know, whatever.  I can’t even go on in this tone.  It’s just so pervasive out in the world.  This cheap horrible way to gain status by stepping on other women and they even think they are advocating a holier (than thou) position by declaring the SAHM life a pathetic, unChristian choice only suitable for brainwashed axlotl tanks.

Maybe they did have bad experiences with church authority in other regards, but it’s pretty hard to cough up my share of Christian sympathy when their biggest problem isn’t with the bad bad men in charge, but the comparatively powerless housewives who are fool enough to like being housewives.  How loving, how pro-woman, how liberated in theology there.  And while this particular time, this particular space it’s a megachurch, the lobbing balls of phlegm at SAHMs is a consistent part of the “I’m leaving a conservative cult of personality abusive leadership church” narrative regardless of the size of the church or the specific types of abuse claims.

Anyhow, you get the general drift and I do too, so I’ll end here to avoid crying anyway.