For The Girls | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

For The Girls

While reading the first draft of Natalie Collier's cover story this issue about domestic abuse, I was overtaken by emotion and memories.

Not many people consider me a "weak" woman who would take a lot of crap off an abusive man, or someone who would impersonate a doormat for any period of time.

But, like so many women, I've been there. I haven't been in a relationship where someone beat me regularly, but I have lived with someone who went into angry rages (at himself, of course), and I was the first person he got to.

I remember him shoving me backward across a room. I crashed through a set of closet doors, twisting my ankle so badly that I had to wear a brace for a while. Somewhere in a journal from that time of my life, I have a handful of my hair that he pulled out one time. And I have a Christmas ornament I made out of a broken mirror from a vanity case of mine he smashed because it was the first thing he got to after a bad day.

Every time I take that ornament out of the box, I give a little thanks that I am no longer subjected to someone's else rage in such a horrible way. And I think of all my other things that this man—a loving, charming person half the time, and to the general public—had broken into pieces so that he could direct his rage somewhere outside himself.

I think of the petty insults he would throw my way—"just teasing," of course—in order to keep my self-esteem low enough that I would continue being his emotional punching bag, I suppose. I think of him telling me that it was all my fault.

Then I think of all the wonderful gifts and handmade cards he would shower me with hours after his rages, or the next day, to ensure that I did not leave him.

Finally, I did leave him—and I rebuilt my self-esteem, vowing that I would never be emotionally, or physically, abused again by a man who didn't have the good sense to know that he needed help. It wasn't my job to fix him, or to absorb his hatred of himself.

Reading Natalie's piece, I also thought of my mother—a victim of abuse in marriages to two different men, both alcoholics, and both of whom she and I loved dearly.

I think of the slight limp she walked with until she died because she jumped between one of them and me, after I had jumped between him and her, when he was charging at her in a drunken rage. Even though I was a teenager, he had yanked off his belt to come after me, swinging the heavy belt buckle my direction. He hit her instead, popping a blood vessel in her thigh, creating an injury she never quite recovered from.

I think of all the times she believed that he would stop drinking, and thus stop abusing us, and went back to him. I think of all the shattered trust and the pain.

The saddest part for me is that my mother was so, so wonderful and had much to offer the right man—a man who had enough self-esteem that he wouldn't hurt those around him. But she wasn't educated—illiterate, in fact—and did not believe that she deserved better. Her father, years before, had been abusive to her, my grandmother and her brothers.

She also grew up in a time when women were chattel to be owned and used and little heard; she was illiterate because her father chose not to send her to school so she could stay home and cook for the workers in the fields. Certainly, they were sharecroppers living in rough times in Neshoba County, but her brothers did go to school, at least for several grades. They learned to read and write; she did not, handicapping her for life.

When she was 14, my mother married to get away from home and soon started having babies. The cycle followed her.

My mother would live her entire life believing she wasn't worthy of being treated well by a man. She did become loud and outspoken, and she had multitudes of friends and taught me compassion for others—but her life was filled with pain, abuse and disappointment, in large part because for much of her life, she could not see herself living any other way.

One thing she did do was to teach her daughter—I came along "later" in her life when she was almost 40—to "not take sh*t off any man." Or at least she tried to.

The truth is, I still had to learn those lessons myself and, well, I'm still learning them, as so many of us chicks are. I had to go out into the world, experience some abuse myself and then decide that I was worth more than being treated shabbily by a man (or anyone, for that matter) with poor self-esteem or caveman ideas about how a woman should act or sound.

It was up to me to break the cycle.

But I'm not going to lie to you. It hasn't been an easy row to hoe. In our culture, the bar is too low for men and too high for women. The same thing that makes them "men" makes us "sluts." They are rewarded for being aggressive and outspoken; we are belittled, usually in some way involving our body parts.

Men are considered more handsome and alluring as their hair grays (or thins); we are too often considered undesirable because we don't look like 16-year-old kids anymore. Men are even too often considered "macho" when they abuse the women in their lives—whether with insults or physical violence—while women are considered "bitches" for being willing to talk back and say, "no more."

Women are even criticized for trying to protect our loved ones, and our own lives and self-worth, and accused of "breaking up families" when we escape abusive situations. I can't tell you how many women I know who have been told by their own families to stay with violent partners because their top duty was to their husband and their children.

Don't believe the hype, girlfriends.

I applaud Attorney General Jim Hood's office for trying to do more to prosecute domestic abusers. But more than anything, I want to say to all you girls out there, of whatever age: You do not deserve to be the victim of physical or emotional abuse. It is not your fault. Believe that you can do better, and you will do better. Ask for help and support.
Move out. Move on. Move up.

Most of all, remember that it is not your job to "fix" an abusive man. It is his. Your job is to lift yourself up to a place where you know in your heart that you deserve better—and to demand a good life for you and your children.

Previous Comments

ID
73864
Comment

I heart you Donner Kay. Once I got away, and had a circle of friends supporting me, I became so much more than I ever though I could be. I would also recommend our girlfriends who have hid themselves away in fear, to look around them for those hands reaching out. They are all around, and they love you until you love yourself again. Because that is most redeeming factor of the whole experience. Loving yourself, becoming who you were meant to be and experiencing the euphoria of knowing you've made it out. Because it IS euphoric.

Author
emilyb
Date
2006-10-18T19:09:14-06:00
ID
73865
Comment

Donna: What a moving and courageous story to share with us. Thank you. HDMatthias

Author
HDMatthias, MD
Date
2006-10-18T21:29:54-06:00
ID
73866
Comment

Donna, no wonder you're such a tough broad. Thank you.

Author
LatashaWillis
Date
2006-10-18T23:06:55-06:00
ID
73867
Comment

Hey, it's a process, ladies. After reading Natalie's piece, it seemed apropos to share my own story. "Strong" women need to do that more often so other women know there is light (and freedom) on the other side.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-10-19T10:53:59-06:00
ID
73868
Comment

Oh, and L.W., I cannot tell you how much I *love* being called a "tough broad." That is fabulous. Thank you.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-10-19T10:54:34-06:00
ID
73869
Comment

Oh, and L.W., I cannot tell you how much I *love* being called a "tough broad." That is fabulous. Thank you. You're quite welcome. :-) This is one of the reasons I have been slow about getting involved in another relationship. The whole Jekyll/Hyde thing freaks me out.

Author
LatashaWillis
Date
2006-10-19T12:52:47-06:00
ID
73870
Comment

This is such an amazing and courageous piece. And given the high percentage of women who are abused by their spouses or boyfriends, I have to believe that this article will reach one or two people and just maybe be part of the push they need to pick up the phone and get out. You rock, Donna. Peace, Tom

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-10-19T13:29:45-06:00
ID
73871
Comment

Donna, what a courageous and riveting story. All I can say is that by sharing it, you have probably given hope and inspiration to many more women than you'll ever know. That's called making a difference! Thanks for opening your heart.

Author
Kacy
Date
2006-10-19T23:38:32-06:00
ID
73872
Comment

One thing I've always wondered about. I have known several women who were beaten by their boyfriends or husbands. Everyone around them told them to leave. Family, friends, everyone. One cut my hair. He broke her ankle one time. Rib another, Cheekbone and black eyes another time. Yet she would not leave until he damn near killed her. That is the part I don't understand. Like my ex's ex husband and his wife. She had a family telling her to leave. She had a brother who was a cop and told her to. Yet she kept staying with a guy who hit her on several occasions. I just don't understand that part. I understand the part about being encouraged to stand by your man, but what about the ones who stay when they are encouraged to leave?

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-10-19T23:46:40-06:00
ID
73873
Comment

That is the part I don't understand. No surprise, King. It's similar to your blind spot when it comes to why the legacy of slavery/Jim Crow is still difficult for people. I address the reason in my column. It's simple: A woman has to *believe* she deserves better, despite all the societal teachings that tell her she doesn't. It's very easy for white men to not understand this (of course, many do) because you have not been in this societal position. The closest you come, probably, is the fact that you're from Mississippi and the inferiority complex that tends to come along with that. But even here, white men have it better than anyone else. This is one of these points where you need to reach deep inside, past your privilege, and try to understand how societal mores and teachings keeps certain people down. In this column, I am not focusing on society, however; I am focusing on telling women to believe in themselves enough to not live with a$$holes, no matter how much they love them.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-10-20T09:58:17-06:00
ID
73874
Comment

Donna, This is truly an eye-opener and will mean so much to victims of abuse. This is a "Been-There-Done That" story with remedy that evolved. The breaking of the vicious cycle is a difficult mission because we keep remembering the "good" part(s) of the relationship. This part must be faced as an addiction and a concerted effort must be in place to manage it. Hats off to you and your survival story!

Author
justjess
Date
2006-10-20T11:23:45-06:00
ID
73875
Comment

Thanks, justjess. I should add a postscript. This man and I are still friends (as I am with most exes). He later learned to help himself and is now married with children and, I believe, a changed person. However, he would never have changed had I stayed there and continued to allow him to treat me that way. I also did him a favor by leaving him and rejecting his abuse. He has done many kind things for me since then—but from a distance and with no strings attached. Once I found my inner strength, I vowed that he would never be close enough to hurt me the same way again, and that has been the case. But I forgave him because he was sick then. I just could not fix him. And I was hurting myself by staying there.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-10-20T11:30:10-06:00
ID
73876
Comment

Kingfish, I'm not a woman, but my guess is that certain women internalize what society says about them. It's not that hard to realize if one is the type who felt, for some reason or another, they have to look outside their families for approval or even life's answers. Let's look at it another way - religious cults (the TRULY destructive ones, I mean) tend to be headed by personalities that can tell people that up is down and left is right. Undoubtedly a lot of women got hoodwinked by men into a relationship like that. Like cult leaders, a lot of despicable men present themselves very confidently, they're full of self-esteem, charismatic, energetic, and dynamic people. They are also full of charm, and a lot of people REALLY REALLY LIKE THEM. But it's only later (or when it's too late, whichever you prefer) that the women and/or friends/family see the light. By that time, she is so enraptured by having a relationship with this man who "has it together", or at the very least "floats her boat", that she hooks her self-esteem on getting and keeping his approval. So, as with a cult leader, she would be psychologically trapped in the situation. The very numbers of women who are abused is ipso facto proof that it could happen to any woman (and I have to say it also happens to men too).

Author
Philip
Date
2006-10-20T13:58:45-06:00
ID
73877
Comment

Donna, This is a very moving story!! This is GOLD! Your family experiences certainly added perspective - people get used to the environments they get stuck in, unless fortune or someone shows them the way out. Abused people (not just women) have usually been soaked in nasty brine for so long they barely have a clue what fresh water taste like, if they have a clue at all. Yes, you are strong, Donna. You conjured up and dragged to your surface the fire needed to tell him "NO WAY! NO MORE! I sure as HELL don't need YOU in my life any more!" Your last part of the article ESPECIALLY deserves a read - you can't change a husbund/lover with such engrained stubborn habits. Let me add here that, IMO, trying to change them may actually make them WORSE, because it gives the abuser new insights and social skills which he can use to further manipulate the perceptions of future women he may meet.

Author
Philip
Date
2006-10-20T14:10:49-06:00
ID
73878
Comment

Donna, thanks for sharing these things. I am sorry all these things happened to you and your Mom, but I hope your story helps some other women who read the column. Esepcially the idea that it isn't their responsibilty or even their job to fix any man. That seems to me to be the most important thing to understand in order to break the abuse cycle. Anyway, I hope it helps some of them.

Author
GLB
Date
2006-10-20T14:17:29-06:00
ID
73879
Comment

This is a heartbreaking column. Donna does her most powerful writing when she writes from her heart and guts. So many women have so many stories of abuse, survival, and triumph. Miracle after miracle walk by us daily and we never recognize it. And this is very much the reason I always feel bad after making any woman mad. Women would never gather this judging from the considerable skills I have at achieving this. I like having friendly sparring sessions with women. Women are some wonderful beings. I don't see how anyone can deny that. I can't understand how a man can abuse a woman and feel good about himself. Only a mighty, mighty, weak man could do this. Some of us men are messed up real bad too. An abusive man is certainly a scarred and troubled soul. Women would be wise to flee rather than try to convert these individuals. I thank God for giving me decent genes and good parents. Because my parents were good I didn't have to experience or learn abuse. You never know how blessed you are until you learn of the lives of others. So many stories are more heartbreaking than our own. I've been considering for a long time staying away from issues or stories involving women. I worry I want do or say what needs to be said. My wife opines my mother wasn't affectionate enough toward me as a child and consequently I run from the depths of my emotions. She claims I appropritely feel them but runs so no one will see I have them. Heck, I'm just macho instead. Glad you survived Donna.

Author
Ray Carter
Date
2006-10-20T15:41:57-06:00
ID
73880
Comment

"past your privelege"?????? Ms Ladd: You don't know a thing about me personally other than what I have posted on here. If you think I grew up priveleged, that is your assumption, not knowledge. Don't assume. I assume nothing about you personally. You might be a trust fund brat, self made millionaire, middle class Joe, recovering drug addict who was once homeless, or anything else for all I know about you, which is literally nothing. Check out the current Northside Sun. I think you'll find the op ed page interesting.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-10-20T15:56:25-06:00
ID
73881
Comment

Kingfish, you appear to be a white heterosexual male. That's at least three kinds of privilege right there--and I say this as one white heterosexual male to another. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-10-20T16:08:49-06:00
ID
73882
Comment

Like I said Tom, you don't know the first thing about me or my background personally.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-10-20T16:16:22-06:00
ID
73883
Comment

I don't mean growing up privileged in the way you mean. I mean the privilege provides to the members of the majority culture. As a white person, I'm part majority culture; as a woman, I'm not as much. But as a while person, I've had to teach myself to look beyond my white privilege, and I know I fail at it sometimes. And I've had people point that out to me as well. My comments are in direct response to what you're writing, and have little to do with your individual background. As for mine, you don't have to guess; it's all in the archives here. I grew up poorer than many, richer than others around me in Neshoba County. It's all there. I don't have secrets about my upbringing. For the most part we were "poor" (by white American standards), but I was privileged enough not to live in a shotgun shack across the tracks and have people assume I couldn't lift myself out of my circumstances. So, it's all relative.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-10-20T16:27:11-06:00
ID
73884
Comment

Likewise, Kingfish, you don't get it in your retort to Tom: you are "privileged" in the way we mean. We don't have to know anything else about you to know that. There is no shame in being "privileged," but there is shame in refusing to realize it.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-10-20T16:28:33-06:00
ID
73885
Comment

Sparring with women means verbal sparring. I can't lie, I have always had the same question Kingfish posed. I understand the difficulty of leaving, the brainwashing, the fear, the lack of self-esteem, and so on. But all caring people pull for the victim to leave. Not leaving renders love one helpless too. We had to keep one of my uncles from killing his brother-in-law many times because his sister wouldn't leave the pathetic man. No one can expect a child or an irreparably bruised and pschologically damaged women to have no trouble leaving. But what about some of the others. I don't believe Kingfish is being judgmental here. I believe he's desperatively seeking answers. I know I am. Having a granddaughter who is attached to me have made me wonder many times what I would do to an abusive boyfriend or husband assuming I'd still be lucid enough to shoot the right person.

Author
Ray Carter
Date
2006-10-20T16:29:27-06:00
ID
73886
Comment

Ray said, Women are some wonderful beings. I don't see how anyone can deny that. Men are some wonderful beings, too. Sadly, it happens more to women, but it does happen to men as well. No one deserves to be abused.

Author
Lady Havoc
Date
2006-10-20T16:31:04-06:00
ID
73887
Comment

I had not seen your post when I wrote that post. It was a question asked because I wanted to know what someone else thought about that question. I think its self esteem, being told and then believing you are worthless. However, I think that is a discussion that needs to be held on why women stay with men who repeatedly abuse and beat them even when all of their family and friends tell them they need to leave and will help them.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-10-20T16:31:38-06:00
ID
73888
Comment

and Ms Ladd, if you want men to better understand, put the arrows back in the quiver when the question is asked. Telling someone they are speaking from a position of privilege when he is trying to start an honest discussion on what alot of people think and have questions about doesn't encourage the candidness you want on here.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-10-20T16:34:06-06:00
ID
73889
Comment

Go get THIS kind of discussion on Mississippi Politics!

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-10-20T16:35:10-06:00
ID
73890
Comment

After so many years of having it beaten/drilled into your head that you are worthless, and that you are lucky to have him because you're too fat and ugly and nobody else would ever want you: yeah. You start believing it. In my case, when I met the ex-boyfiend, I had just lost my grandfather. Since my grandparents raised me, this hit me really hard. I was truly alone for the first time in my life. I met him a month after my grandpa died. It started out good: I think they all do. Then it went downhill from there. Sometimes it takes a while to come around.

Author
Lady Havoc
Date
2006-10-20T16:39:28-06:00
ID
73891
Comment

Kingfish, you are speaking from a position of privilege. That's not an arrow; that's fact. Don't be ashamed of it; just embrace it and use it to help you learn more about the issue that you claim to want to understand. And, Kingfish, it is particularly ironic to try to tell me to pipe down on this particular thread. Down, boy. You have no credentials to tell me how to respond. I don't care what you think. With due respect. And that, my friend, is why I am now well equipped not to stay with an abusive man. I don't need the approval of any man to express myself and be who I am. Thus, I know can gain the love and respect of a man who is worthy of my time. See how that works? Interesting riddle, eh?

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-10-20T16:40:32-06:00
ID
73892
Comment

Ladd: pipe down. ;-)

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-10-20T16:42:37-06:00
ID
73893
Comment

King: Go to ... oh, never mind. :-P

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-10-20T16:47:10-06:00
ID
73894
Comment

So , just to understand the terms, do I have ambulatory privilege because I can use both my legs? Do I have sighted privilege because my eyes work? Do I have height privilege because I am neither a little person or a giant? Do I have diction privilege because I have no distinguishable accent, and therefore do not experience that kind of discrimination? Do I have kin privilege because I have family here in Mississippi, and in Mississippi that counts for a lot? Do I have American privilege because I am fortunate enough to be born here? Do I have 21st century privilege because had I been born in an earlier time I may have already have died from infection (I had a birth defect as a baby)? Do I have human privilege because I was born in the dominant species at this point in planetary history? In other words, is any advantage I have, regardless of how or why I have it, called a privilege by your definition? And, if so, isn't it just a term used to try to instill a certain attitude towards those things that we have that others don't? That is, isn't it much more general than race, sex, or sexual orientation, and doesn't that attitude apply to everyone about any way in which they have advantages? Not that everyone has the same privilege or privilege to the same degree, but we do all have privilege of some type, don't we? Doesn't it just depend on who you are comparing yourself to?

Author
GLB
Date
2006-10-20T17:19:00-06:00
ID
73895
Comment

GLB, you have belittling privilege. What else do you need? ;-) You can try to make this ridiculous and, thus, avoid the topic—but what we're trying to talk seriously about here is the prevailing culture that unfairly gives certain people privileges and not others—without them lifting a finger, just because they were born that way. Unfortunately, people who do not realize or admit that they are part of a majority privileged culture are much less likely to understand the extra limitations that must be overcome for those who aren't the privileged and how their very privilege actually inhibits others. Again, it's not about hating yourself because you're privileged. I don't hate myself because I'm white, or anyone else who is white. But I also understand that my whiteness automatically affords me certain privileges. I, therefore, need to understand that in order to understand the effect my privilege has on others. Or, put another way, it's kind of a yin-yang sort of thang.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-10-20T17:25:51-06:00
ID
73896
Comment

I really wasn't being belittling, although I can understand why it might seem that way. My post was a serious one. The things I said are not ridiculous. They go to the point. I don't disagree with you. I do think it is important to realize that other people have different circumstances in their lives, and this makes some things easier for them, and some things harder. I was just pointing out that this is a very general principle. I am not denying the existence of thse privileges, I 'm just saying that if any of us looks at our lives, we can find plenty of them. We all know that life is unfair. We often fail to notice when it is unfair in our favor. As for myself, I am fullly aware that I have been given far, far more than I deserve. More than most anyone I know, of any race, sex, imcome level, or what have you. I really don't know why, but it is true. I hope I can use it well, but I don't often do even that.

Author
GLB
Date
2006-10-20T17:37:32-06:00
ID
73897
Comment

Which point? No, actually, it's not a general principle in the way we're discussing it. The privileged majority culture in this country is very, very easy to define. It's not just about life being unfair. It's about it being inherently more unfair to some than others because the "privileged" majority culture has no desire to look beyond the tips of its own nose—and then, often, do things to actually hurt those who aren't in their group because, well, they have the power to. It's a sickening cycle, and just saying that life is "unfair" is a cop-out. The best way to use our privilege, IMO, is to face it and then harness its power to reverse the cycles that privilege have led to. That's honorable.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-10-20T17:41:12-06:00
ID
73898
Comment

Okay, I can only speak from MY experience, but here's a handful of statements I heard as a child that I can remember: -You don't talk to me like that woman. (this was followed by a slap on my mom's face. I remember we were looking at Fun Pads at the store, then went to the car and anger ensued.) -Of course! That's why they are put on pedestels to look up their skirts. (Same person who slapped my mom. Said to me at about age twelve when I asked if he thought women are equal to him.) -Women can't be bank robbers. The men are always stronger and they always will be. (you guessed who) I knew that man always wanted sons over daughters. He was vocal about that. At the same time, he could sometimes encourage me, like the time he helped me run for class president in fourth grade and when he took me to Huntsville when I wanted to be an astronaut. But just a few weekends back, he left a room in anger because I was discussing my childhood church (I had visited) with them. When I said that it's hard to hear women can't lead when the Bible says God does not know man nor woman, his face reddened and he left the room. So, for one, when you are told in your formative years that you are less and always will be, it sticks. I don't think more examples need to be given as explanation, but I do want to illustrate how children learn what they live. Again, my dad had moments of redemption, where I can forgive and know that he has done better as he's known better. And he's where I get my passion and creative determination. So there's that cyclical thing. Then there's the fact that women make less money and are afraid of not making it alone, there's the heavy burden of proof that's hard to carry alone and all kinds of other things. And I hate to say it, but I don't for a second think that there are that many women who have "everyone" telling them to leave. I also think instead of just "telling" them to leave, we should alert whoever we can to what is going on. If it were my kid being beaten, and saying I won't leave, you can bet a monkey I'd be on the phone reporting incidents any time I had proof. Tough Love.

Author
emilyb
Date
2006-10-20T18:11:43-06:00
ID
73899
Comment

I have forgiven, too, Emily. That's part of our inner work we do. I have compassion for people who have abused me along the way. But forgiving and being compassionate is not the same thing as continuing-to-be-a-doormat. Yeah, I'm not buying the whole "everyone" telling them argument, either. Sounds a bit like wishful thinking. What a woman (and every girl) needs to be taught and told repeatedly is how to love and respect herself enough that she cannot stay in an abusive situation.

Author
DonnaLadd
Date
2006-10-20T21:40:31-06:00
ID
73900
Comment

Emily, the fact that there are actually men running around who still believe this crap, and inflict it on the women and girls in their lives, breaks my heart. I don't really want to have anything to do with this gender sometimes. It's sort of like a conversation I had earlier tonight: If you figure that 25 to 30 percent of men have either sexually harassed or sexually assaulted or physically struck or otherwise harmed women, then you can reasonably conclude that at least 50 to 60 percent of men know somebody who does or has done this, and does not object strongly enough to end the friendship. I've said it more than once: I don't buy into gender separatism, but women who want nothing to do with men--I can so completely understand that sometimes. There are certainly times when I wish I could take that male chromosome and pack it away in the closet like an old hat. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-10-20T21:55:20-06:00
ID
73901
Comment

You are right on the doormat thing. That's a difficult boundary to establish too. Hardest when a mutual child is involved. The courts want the best interest of the child, divorce literature tells us that it's best for kids to have some kind of relationship with both parents, so cutting them off, unless they've done some BRUTAL violence, is almost impossible. But how do we teach that it's NOT okay while NOT disparaging the other parent? If anyone has the answer to that, please share! When kids and family are involved, even when you're out, the emotional/verbal still has room to creep in. I'll let y'all know when I know the answer to that one. My favorite coin phrase was the counselor's advice of "Do not engage." My goodness what a lifesaver that was for a while! As soon as the other party starts to put down, yell, deman, etc., simply say, "I don't have to listen to you talk to me this way. You can talk to me respectfully or not at all" If he keeps going, hang up. Don't answer the phone. Don't try to reason. You can't be rational with an irrational person.

Author
emilyb
Date
2006-10-20T22:22:13-06:00
ID
73902
Comment

since this is the hot thread tonight I will take this opportunity to say............ Good Night JFP. (and this time tomorrow I am not reponsible for anything I post.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-10-20T23:23:33-06:00
ID
73903
Comment

"Life is unfair" is not a cop-out. It's a truth. It is also a truth to say that we should be aware of when it is unfair in our favor. That's privilege. Also, "majority culture" cannot desire. It cannot do. Individuals desire. Individuals do. Individuals become aware of the fact that they have privilege. And, if they chose, individuals can make decisions that account for that priviledge. That's just my prism for seeing the world, Ladd. All real change comes down to individual's choices and relationships. You know, I think I often want to go to the same party you do -- I just chose a different way to get there. So if you get there first, save me some chips and dip.

Author
GLB
Date
2006-10-21T00:11:48-06:00
ID
73904
Comment

Y'all are feeling sorry for yourselves because you have to deal with is the doctorine of the Southern Baptist Convention. Look at it this way you could be under the thumb of the Taliban. Yes Bubba it is a snide satirical remark.

Author
butterat
Date
2006-10-21T00:21:30-06:00
ID
73905
Comment

all right. Who took away the national issues forum on the forums list? Someone is going to get tied to a chair at Char with headphones blaring the Best of Larry Nesbitt into his or her ears.

Author
Kingfish
Date
2006-10-21T09:24:08-06:00
ID
73906
Comment

[quote]Y'all are feeling sorry for yourselves because you have to deal with is the doctorine of the Southern Baptist Convention.[/quote] Anytime you wanna debate this one, bring it up in the forums. I can enlighten you there. :) I'm not here to praise Cesear, just to bury him.

Author
Ironghost
Date
2006-10-21T09:37:00-06:00
ID
73907
Comment

You go first Ironghost :) I tend to ignore folks who say "y'all are". This isn't just an us problem. It's an "all y'all" problem as in everyone :) Plus, I don't have to deal with the doctrine of the Southern Baptist Church. They have to deal with me. The SBC NOR the AFA will ever be my spirituality.

Author
emilyb
Date
2006-10-21T10:57:02-06:00
ID
73908
Comment

And in regards to abuse and child custody: http://www.leadershipcouncil.org/1/pas/dv.html Frustrating. Especially the numer that only 13% of the father participated in the child's life UNTIL the custody dispute. Then they want to be fathers. Control much?

Author
emilyb
Date
2006-10-21T11:07:44-06:00
ID
73909
Comment

I am glad to hear that the SBC, NOR, AFA have to deal with you Emily, Unfortunately The attitudes engendered in the roles and, despite the fancy convulted interpretations of theology and the Bible, the inferior status assigned to women by these denominations, provides the basis for treatment of women, in a number of ways, as inferior creatures with the sanction for "uppitiyness" the wrath of God. Translate this form of religious socialization from childhood onward of both women and men and you have a strong recipe for both abuse and the tolerance of abuse by both sexes. Be happy to debate the subject with "All of y'all.":-)

Author
butterat
Date
2006-10-21T14:38:26-06:00
ID
73910
Comment

Emily, that article is BRILLIANT. Breaks my heart, though. In a forum earlier today, I ran into another MRA. Anyone notice how "men's rights" is always about reducing the hard-won rights of women, and never about expanding men's rights in any other direction like, say, more funding for research into prostate cancer, or getting rid of public erection laws? It's always about putting down women (often in extremely misogynistic terms). And the men who make up the rank and file of the movement are bitter divorcees, who were often deemed bad spouses in a court of law. Gee, what a coincidence. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-10-21T14:56:21-06:00
ID
73911
Comment

Pardon my assumption butterat ;) I think my uterus had gotten hysterical or something. Plus, I grew up in Tupelo, so the AFA has always been a pain in my butt. Good Lord, at one point the whole town was not using Crest because of the moon symbol! Mrs. Wilemon taught my home ec class in 7th grade. Bless her heart.

Author
emilyb
Date
2006-10-21T15:11:13-06:00
ID
73912
Comment

Y'know, this is a link that y'all probably have all worked with, but if you're sitting there (as I am) thinking "What can I do to help?," here's one way. MCADV is a great organization, and there are opportunities for everyone to get educated and help pay the bills on those shelters, for starters. Cheers, TH

Author
Tom Head
Date
2006-10-21T15:21:51-06:00

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