Earlier today the LDS Church’s Newsroom issued a news release entitled, “Effectiveness of Church Approach to Preventing Child Abuse,” which contained these statements:
The Church has long had a highly effective approach for preventing and responding to abuse. In fact, no religious organization has done more. Although no one system is perfect and no single program will work with every organization, the Church’s approach is the gold standard.
I take issue with those statements.
Several months ago, much to the dismay of my two young sons, I imposed a No Toy Guns policy in our house. On a particularly upsetting night, I ceremoniously marched an armload of NERF and water guns out to the big trash can, plopped them down into the receptacle’s slimy, stinky depths, and shut the lid, effectively ending the ongoing “but what if I don’t ever point them at anyone and I only shoot at non-living things” debate that had long been a source of hope for them and wariness for me. I told them it was because they shoot at their little sisters and make them cry, and that was definitely part of my concern. But, if I’m honest, I would have to throw away virtually all of their toys if I tossed out everything that made someone cry, got used as a weapon, or was misused in a way that was potentially harmful to someone’s health. So, no, the No Toy Guns policy was not instituted solely to protect my little girls from the evils of the foam-tipped NERF bullet. Continue reading
I was sitting in the car at a red light today, and Locked Away by R. City featuring Adam Levine came on the radio. And all of a sudden, I was furious. FURIOUS. IRATE. INCENSED. You get the picture. Here are the lyrics, just in case you’ve been living under a rock or you hate Adam Levine (who am I kidding…no one hates Adam Levine):
If I got locked away
And we lost it all today
Tell me honestly, would you still love me the same?
If I showed you my flaws
If I couldn’t be strong
Tell me honestly, would you still love me the same?
Posted in Current Events, Feminist, Love, Motherhood, Parenting, Patriarchy, Single Motherhood, Women of Color
Tagged culture, Current Events, Feminism, feminist, incarceration, Locked Away, love, marriage, Parenting, prison, Ride or Die, Single Motherhood, Women of Color
As you may be aware, last week several FEMWOCEES presented or participated in panels at the annual Sunstone Symposium in Salt Lake City, UT. We are currently in the process of transcribing some of our presentations, and this is the first of them. Three FEMWOCEES — Gina, Kalani, and Fatimah — participated in a panel called Why We Stay, and this is the first transcription from that panel. If the grammar seems a bit more conversational than normal, please keep in mind that this is what was presented orally, so it is a lot less formal than some of our other work. Also, please be sure to check back throughout the next couple of weeks, as we will be posting more presentations as they are transcribed.
“Some of you are my facebook friends, and if you are, you know that I have been agonizing over this panel. It is incredibly intimidating to be the sole no-name. I feel like there are all of these amazing, talented, well-known people…and me. I am both humbled and terrified to be standing before you today. I used to teach 9th grade before I had four babies in 2 years, which I always thought was incredibly challenging because you have to constantly do a kind of song and dance routine to keep the kids engaged and interested, but as I have had opportunities to speak and teach adults, I’ve realized that it is a lot more challenging for me to speak to adults because…y’all listen. And, like, you expect me to have interesting and relevant things to say. So, I’m going for either great and memorable…or totally forgettable!
I am the black sheep in an otherwise very orthodox family. I was born into the church, got baptized at 8, rebelled a little bit and went to the University of Utah for 2 years on a volleyball scholarship, but then my sister committed to play for BYU, and I transferred so that I could play with her. And while I am grateful for that experience, I would definitely say that I have more of a University of Utah personality. I’ve been a “questioner” for as long as I can remember. Faith does not come naturally to me, and it is important to me that I know the “why” before I’m willing to “do,” which, as you can imagine, has made my life in the church a bit of a challenge. Continue reading
I wrote out a big long whiny post about why I’m sad and angry that, for my children, Father’s Day is just another reminder of the dad they don’t currently have. My ex husband, the father of my 5 children, is in prison, where he has been for the majority of my kids’ lives.
Three months old with chubby legs and big, round shining eyes
That look at me in confusion as I walk away,
Leaving you with a stranger in a strange, sterile place.
You start to cry as I disappear
And I cry, too.
The Lament of the Single Mother. Continue reading
Yesterday I got a Mother’s Day card from my son, Ovaka, and I cried the ugly cry. You know the one I’m talking about – where you gasp for breath and your face contorts into what can only be described as gargoyle-esque deformity and snot drips liberally down your face. I was alone, thank goodness, when I opened the card, but just thinking about it makes tears spring to my eyes at the most inconvenient times. I miss my son. Continue reading
Posted in Culture, Parenting, Polynesian, Single Motherhood, Tongan, Women of Color
Tagged Adoption, Mother's Day, Pasifika women, Single Motherhood, Tongan, Women of Color