Christian Patriarchy Movement Pressures Stay-at-Home Daughters to Choose Whom She Will Serve First: Daddy or God

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Who is benefiting by keeping grown adult daughters at home and single?  A look at Christian Patriarchy espoused by Doug Phillips; Steve and Teri Maxwell and their daughter, Sarah; and Geoffrey and Victoria Botkin and their daughters, Anna Sofia and Elizabeth.

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Over 15 years ago, I participated on an internet forum called Titus2.com run by Steve and Teri Maxwell. Steve and Teri Maxwell are well-known names in the Christian Homeschool Movement.  We heard them speak at homeschool conventions and now they go around the country on their own, giving talks to homeschool groups and families.  The Titus2.com forum was specifically for homeschool moms to connect and converse.  The common topics were raising children, homeschooling, how to be a godly wife, courtship, pretty much any and all topics related to being a wife/mother and homeschooling.

The forum was pretty active and the Maxwell’s young daughter, Sarah, helped to moderate it. Soon, Sarah graduated from homeschool high school (in 2000) and I wondered what was next for her. She continued to help with her family’s business with the forum and then eventually the blog after the forum shut down. She also wrote children’s books. We watched as her older brother began a courtship and later married.

But what about Sarah?  When would she find a potential husband?  How would she even find a potential husband since her life seemed to be so isolated with family, business, and travel to conferences.  Now, many years later, not much has changed with Sarah.  She is still at home serving daddy and his business/ministry. She helps with their blog. Another brother has been married off and having babies, but as we follow along with updates on their website, we see no prospects in sight for Sarah to marry. I remember reading an article that she aspires to be a wife and mom. Sarah just turned 32 years old this week. What is the problem here?

A while back, I read a very good article on the issue of stay-at-home daughters – this time, about another popular homeschool family, the Botkins.  The article was written by Rebecca Davis.  Rebecca Davis has written biographies especially with children in mind, hoping that her books “will bring glory to God through the lives of ordinary Christians who serve an Extraordinary God.”  I love that!  It wasn’t until after reading the article that I realized I have one her biographies on my bookshelf!  

I am so grateful that Rebecca has allowed me to share her original article with you here.  ~JA

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For shame, beautiful Botkins,

by Rebecca Davis

With the very first issue of Patriarch magazine twenty years ago, my husband eschewed the Patriarchy Movement. Every since then, I’ve followed it from afar, often with concern, especially upon finding that some patriarchal churches wanted to keep unsaved people out, lest their children be tainted.

It was with grief that I saw recently that one of the Patriarchs of Patriarchy had fallen, and his organization, Vision Forum, along with it. I say grief, not because I thought of Doug Phillips as incapable of falling, but because I grieve for the many people who put so much faith in him, and especially for the women who have been genuinely victimized—spiritually, emotionally, physically—in the Patriarchy Movement.

In reading various websites recently, I came again to the Botkin sisters, the beautiful Botkins, who I knew had written their bookSo Much More eight years ago when they were around 20 and 22.  The “so much more” that they outlined and still espouse was for young unmarried girls like themselves—the way to achieve so much more than the modern culture is by staying at home until you marry. Until you marry, serve your father.

Now these young ladies are 28 and 30, staying at home and serving their father. How do they serve their father? Besides “submitting to his whims,” “reverencing and adoring him,” they serve him by speaking and writing on the importance of unmarried girls staying home and serving their father.

In many cases, for a young unmarried woman to stay home can be exactly the right thing (though the concept of serving the father can go to exaggerated and disturbing lengths). But it most certainly is not a Biblical mandate. The Botkin sisters—and all of Patriarchy along with them—teach that if a woman isn’t building the Kingdom of the Man in her life, she will be building her Own Kingdom. There is no other option.

I tossed and turned last night, thinking about all this again. I write missionary books. I wrote one about one of the very first missionaries to the Central African Republic, Margaret Nicholl, a young unmarried woman, who saw God do great things there (and incidentally, met her husband there).

Several of my missionary books have referenced the work of another woman, Joy Ridderhof, who in fact never married, but instead founded the ministry called Gospel Recordings,which has been of incalculable value to missionaries from the 1940s even to the present day.

According to the beautiful Botkins and the Patriarchy Movement as a whole, both of these missionary women, along with many others such as the intrepid Amy Carmichael (whom I also wrote a book about!), were outside the will of God. All of them should have stayed home under their fathers.

Yes, the Patriarchals do give a nod to missions. They teach in their two-hundred-year plan that Christianity will dominate the world. But this plan appears to me to be eerily similar to the way Muslims teach that Islam will dominate the world: by having a lot of children. Building their earthly dynasties.

Sorry to say, but the Kingdom of Islam has got us beat hands down on that one. By birth, Muslims are winning, and until Christians advocate polygamy, we won’t be able to catch up.

But do you know what religion is winning the growth race when it comes to conversions? Christianity. There is no contest here—Christianity is the clear winner. Through the opening of the eyes of the blind—yes, even Muslims—Jesus Christ is being glorified and His Kingdom is spreading throughout the earth. This is what I write books about.

However, for a young unmarried woman in Patriarchy, life is not about building the Kingdom of Jesus Christ through the powerful spread of His glorious Gospel of Grace. It can’t be, because then there might be a conflict between Christ and her Earthly Father. The Kingdom of her Earthly Father must be supreme.

This is not about “the world” that must never darken the doors of “the chosen.” It is not about feminism vs. true womanhood. This is a battle of kingdoms.

For shame, beautiful Botkins. Stop focusing on the Kingdom of Man, and focus instead on the Kingdom of the mighty Savior Jesus Christ, through His glorious Gospel of Grace.

He is the transformer of lives. His is the Kingdom that matters.

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60 comments on “Christian Patriarchy Movement Pressures Stay-at-Home Daughters to Choose Whom She Will Serve First: Daddy or God

  1. No doubt the “pressures” mentioned in this article are true in some cases. But there is nothing necessarily wrong with a 32 year old single woman living at home with her parents. Whether Christian or not, many women (and men) choose to do that for financial or other reasons.

    “Sarah just turned 32 years old this week. What is the problem here?”

    Wow! That’s quite a slap in the face to anyone who married later. Just because someone wants to be married but isn’t doesn’t mean there is a problem.

    For interest’s sake, here a couple articles from the Maxwells about their adult daughters (and sons) living at home:
    http://www.titus2.com/corners/moms-corner/older-daughters-living-at-home.html
    http://blog.titus2.com/2013/10/10/responding-to-naysayers-part-1/

    Here are a couple excerpts from the daughter article:
    We have given our girls learning opportunities just like our boys have had so that they not only have homemaking skills but also have income-producing skills. Sarah has learned business management skills, including Quickbooks, inventory, shipping, taxes, marketing, and more. Not only that, but she also has now authored eight successful children’s books. Anna has bookkeeping skills she learned as she managed the boys’ construction-business books, has her A+ certificate, and much experience in nutrition and exercise. Mary is taking art classes.

    We talked with our girls about the questions that were asked in this e-mail, and we asked them how they would answer those questions. They said that if they don’t marry, they couldn’t imagine living anywhere else. They said they love living here. Yet, if the Lord brings the right man along as a husband, each will be happy for that too. They told us they aren’t concerned about what to do when we are gone because they are already income producing and know they can be self supporting should they need to be.

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  2. Wow! That’s quite a slap in the face to anyone who married later. Just because someone wants to be married but isn’t doesn’t mean there is a problem.

    I disagree. I don’t even care if she made a blog post that said that she was remaining at home of her own free will, you still could not convince me. She has been isolated and sheltered her whole life. Everything is controlled by her father. Guess where they go to church? Her father leads church service at a retirement community. Where normally one would think that church might be an opportunity to find a suitor, she can’t even meet a young (or even middle age) guy at the retirement home unless he’s a paid staff there.

    She very may well have lots of skills, but that doesn’t mean that she’s still not virtually held captive. She only knows “obey and serve dad.” There are no other options. She will never get married until someone comes along that meets Steve’s approval. His own sons had bought their homes outright before they got married. Steve has written a book on this, so very likely, he expects any future spouse for Sarah to have paid for a house in full. I don’t know any young men with homes paid for, do you?

    Also, when I mean isolated, I mean that the boys/girls are not even allowed to play competitive sports. Their life is solely around Mr. Patriarch. All of the kids work for dad – even adult kids. Oh, and both married sons own homes right next to daddy. #3 son Joseph was engaged to be married and bought a house down the street, but his fiancé chickened out. She was one smart lady. Can you imagine having to serve husband AND deal with the family Patriarch?

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  3. JA,

    I was aware of some of the additional information you shared about the Maxwells, but I don’t know them personally and certainly don’t know enough to come to any conclusions one way or another. If you have more specific information about them to prove that case, feel free to share it.

    My comment was more directed toward your comment in general. There are many 32 year old women who want to be married but are single and living with their parents in perfectly normal, non-patriarchal, non-abusive situations. Are you saying that’s a problem? Women in that situation tend to feel bad enough as it is, so your question comes across as hurtful. They may well ask themselves, “Yeah, what is the problem with me?” I don’t think that’s how you intended it, but that’s how it comes across.

    If there are problems with abuse, or if you have specific information, bring them up, but citing what is a normal situation for a large part of the general population doesn’t help to prove the point of your post.

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  4. And Joseph doesn’t even live in the house he bought, he still lives at home, with his parents, sharing a room with his brothers. So the house is going to waste (he’s not renting it out to get some additional income) while he waits for another opportunity to find a wife. Very sad.

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  5. “Sarah just turned 32 years old this week. What is the problem here?”

    Wow! That’s quite a slap in the face to anyone who married later. Just because someone wants to be married but isn’t doesn’t mean there is a problem.

    TIA, I think you are taking this in the wrong way. There is nothing wrong with choosing not to marry. But in the patriarchal world, getting married and having babies is THE only role for a woman. (Aside from staying home forever and serving her father and family.) She must not date or take an interest in any man. Her father will decide if a man is even allowed to approach her as a potential mate. If he says no, then she has no say. If he agrees, she may or may not get much voice in whether a courtship or marriage takes place. Girls are trained from birth to obey their fathers. There is no real “choice” is getting married or remaining single.
    Sarah Maxwell is not allowed friends, shares a bedroom with her sisters, cannot attend college, can’t talk on the phone with an unrelated male, can’t go online without her mother checking both her computer and phone, or go shopping alone. Sarah does not watch TV, listen to the radio, go to the library, or read the newspaper. There is very little in her life that she has freely chosen. If Sarah had actually chosen not to marry, that would be fine. But her isolated and sheltered life ruled by her father has been chosen for her.
    Real choice is what is missing in this particular case of a 32 year old daughter still living at home, and that is the issue, not that she is unmarried and at home at that age. That is what I think JA is saying.

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  6. Wow! We obviously did not run around the same homeschool circles in Beaverton! 😉 Again, you bring up names of folks that I’ve never heard of who are influential in the homeschool movement. I’m still glad of my ignorance. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi JaneyN,

    Welcome!

    You nailed it. Next time I will have you write the post. Haha

    Yes, it is the freedom that she does not have and has never even known. She doesn’t miss it because she’s always been under his thumb.

    Talk to young ladies who have left their homes and they have to reprogram themselves. It is like a culture shock. They don’t know what they like, what they don’t like. Decisions are sometimes very difficult to make. It is very difficult to integrate into normal life and many times they are so used to being controlled, they will end up in controlling relationships because it feels familiar to them. A very disheartening issue is that they were never respected for their own individuality. Their destiny was controlled by their fathers. They were owned by their fathers.

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  8. Where normally one would think that church might be an opportunity to find a suitor, she can’t even meet a young (or even middle age) guy at the retirement home unless he’s a paid staff there.

    As effective as eunuch guards for the harem.

    (Or the Medieval Thai version with only female harem guards.)

    Steve has written a book on this, so very likely, he expects any future spouse for Sarah to have paid for a house in full. I don’t know any young men with homes paid for, do you?

    I was single when I paid off my house in full. Of course I was 53 at the time…

    But in other parts of the world, patriarchs sell their 16-year-old daughters to 53-year-old rich husbands all the time. Just gotta negotiate like the bazaar and throw enough dinars under Daddy’s nose….

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  9. It may have been Living Hope. They used to have a strong homeschool co-op that met at that church. I live just down the street from it. The co-op hasn’t met there for years. They now meet at a Baptist church in Hillsboro off of Baseline. I went for one year for the kid’s sake. It wasn’t the right group for me.

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  10. JaneyN,

    Thanks for the additional information. No doubt many people here are more familiar with these families and these types of situations in general. In the case of the Botkins, I can see how the information presented would justify the title: “Christian Patriarchy Movement Pressures Stay-at-Home Daughters to Choose Whom She Will Serve First: Daddy or God.” I’m still not sure about the Maxwells.

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  11. This always makes me laugh. I was raised from the cradle that kids were to get a good education and leave home to start our own lives. When I discovered another culture where kids didn’t leave home, I told my dad, “I never knew that was an option.” His growled reply: “It wasn’t.”

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  12. TIA: Just go read their blog linked above. On the sidebar, you can see that this lifestyle I described of them goes back probably over a decade. Sarah does not have freedom to do anything else. In fact I will be as bold to say that this lifestyle of extreme Patriarchy is just like a cult, but maybe worse, because the cult leader is their own father. It’s one thing to have a pseudo-pastor as a cult leader, a whole other issue to have your father be your cult leader – especially because of all of the trust issues involved.

    And then imagine if they are able to get out and the kinds of spiritual issues they must reconcile because the earthly father and heavenly Father relationship are so interwoven emotionally.

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  13. I was also on the Maxwell’s motherboard. I was a very frequent poster there. I am the same age as Sarah, and I had a toddler and a baby when I discovered Titustwo.com. I always thought it odd that her parents let her moderate a board that was for mothers and wives. There were some heavy topics on there about birth control, husband’s viewing pornography, scheduling sex (Bill Gothard style) etc.

    I was once banned from Private Message privileges for several months because I recommended Shonda Parker’s website to a mom that could buy one of her books on natural childbirth. Shonda Parker is an herbalist, and a Christian, and may even have been involved in the patriarchy movement. I recommended her site in a private message. So they obviously could read PMs!!

    Their long lengthy list of rules stated that they would not allow a website to recommended that used yahoo groups. Shonda Parker had a yahoo support group. I wasn’t even aware of her yahoo group when I posted to the link to her website!

    They never told why I was banned from writing PM’s, and I wrote and asked what I had done. I had gone over the list of rules several times, and couldn’t figure it out. They wrote back and said I had recommended a site that used Yahoo Groups.

    I apologized and said that I had sincerely meant no harm..that it was an innocent mistake. They kept me banned for about 2 months.

    They were VERY controlling over what could be posted. Their rules were ridiculous. The first post I ever made (Introduction) was not approved. Again, I had to read through the list of rules several times before I figured out what I had done wrong. I can’t even remember what I said that was against the rules, but it was something silly.

    I also remember one time a lady (was childless at the time) had gone off birth control (everyone rejoiced). Then a few weeks later, there was a big announcement (red flag importance) asking for prayer because the lady was commanded by her husband to go back on the birth control.

    Later on after the momsboard dissolved, and a few of us found our way to other message boards, I figured out that this mom was married to a chronic drunk, who was addicted to porn, and even fooled around looking at underage girls “once or twice”. He forced her to wear head coverings, and dress with dresses down to the ankles. He had a nasty temper, and may of even beat her. She shared this with obvious hints on the other board. Those things were never allowed to be posted on the Maxwell’s board. It gave an appearance that everyone on there that we were all rosy, happy, growing, and thriving Christians (with a few everyday struggles) in the patriarchy movement. It was also obvious to me, that the only thing “wise” that husband did was command his wife to go on birth control. She went onto have a few kids anyway, and posted frequently how she had to always hush the kids or it could erupt his temper. It is very sad. 😦

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  14. I am sure that most of these “stay at home” daughters have little if any social skills with single men especially in the case of this daughter. Thus unless some man finds her and approaches her father as it suppose to work under courtship. Even then I wonder how well this woman would be able to handle a courtship with a potential suitor with her having been so sheltered. So sad.

    At least we can now see what really sadly happens. It was easy for the father to say this courtship and “stay at home” daughter was the best way when things were earlier.

    Even in not as extreme groups when courtship is practiced you see a lot of the single men and women not having much of the social skills required to interact with those of the opposite sex.

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  15. ThinkingAboutThis, welcome to SSB!

    You are correct about the oversight on the Titus2 forums. They were moderated very closely and it was rare that they allowed a comment that differed from their view of things. The example you gave of the husband telling the wife to go on birth control is a good one. She would have been counseled to obey her husband, regardless if his opinion was viewed as wrong because wives must defer to the husband’s authority. God would deal with him, but her first responsibility is to obey at all cost and show her children that she respects and submits to her husband. Wives must never show their children any division among husband/wife.

    At Titus2.com forum, if a wife had a problem with her husband, she was told to gently appeal and then to pray for God to change his heart. I am afraid that many women would have been encouraged to stay in an abusive marriage heeding the advice in this forum. This is a common thought in Patriarchy – as many believe in the permanence view of marriage (i.e., marriage is not allowed even for divorce or abandonment).

    I, too, remember thinking about Sarah moderating very sensitive subjects at her young age. I didn’t understand Teri and Steve put on a front of sheltering and protecting their children from adult-type subjects of sex, porn, etc, yet Sarah was in the midst of it. She was the primary moderator and then flagged comments for her parents to look at if she had concerns. I remember some of those heavy topics.

    I had one comment removed. It’s been so long ago and I can’t remember what it was about, but I was left feeling that anyone who had any alternate view certainly did not have a voice. I’m glad that site is gone.

    I forgot about the yahoo group thing. Good grief, that is absurd. Ok, then they should have not had a forum because in order to find their forum, people have to go on the internet and there’s all kinds of porn on the internet. Such ridiculous control freaks.

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  16. Thanks, JA. I have been reading here for a while and enjoy your site.

    TIA, I would also recommend reading the Maxwell’s blog. The father is very controlling of everything and everyone in the family.
    -When his children were learning music Steve used white out to eliminate the words to “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” because he did not want any non-Christian lyrics cluttering their minds. Hymns only.
    -Steve asked one son to give up playing an instrument he loved because it was “becoming an idol” to the son. Of course, the son did, and happily. Everything is happy, no complaining allowed.
    -Teri, the mother, has issues with depression and back pain. She can’t complain but must be joyful.
    -Teri used to drink Pepsi every day but quit, as it, too, was an “idol” to her. I’m not endorsing drinking Pepsi daily, but to stop because it’s an idol?
    -Teri cannot even remind her husband to pick up a pizza when he is out running errands. That would be nagging and showing a lack of faith in him. It is better to have him forget dinner than remind him. What Steve does it always right. (My husband would ask why on earth I hadn’t called to remind him. Lol)
    – One son, Christopher, has an online computer class that he teaches. Females may take it, but if a girl or woman has questions she cannot call and ask him. She must speak to one of his sisters, who will “provide encouragement” to the caller. They don’t want any “defrauding” to occur if the son speaks to an unrelated female on the phone. This is for her “protection” also. (Anna, one of the sisters has now taken the class so is probably able to actually help instead of just encourage. But that was not the case when the classes began.)
    -No college for anyone. Any education they have is from homeschooling and reading books (usually technical ones or non-fiction) that are approved by the parents. And they don’t learn ANYTHING that isn’t Christian. Nothing about Greek or Roman mythology, evolution, etc. They black out parts of books that are objectionable to them, such as a mention of dating or having a boyfriend or girlfriend. These books are usually not allowed, but once in a while there is a book that has some value, but it can be heavily censored. College would expose them to non-Christian people and ideas. The girls don’t need it because the only acceptable roles for them are wife, mother, or stay at home daughter. The lack of educational prospects is my biggest pet peeve with this lifestyle.
    The adult Maxwells cannot read whatever they choose. They cannot wear whatever they choose. They can’t be alone, go anywhere alone. They must go to bed early and rise early. They do everything together and it is always a special family time, a joy. The list goes on and on and everything they do or don’t do is Steve’s decision.
    Steve says that their children have made the choice to live at home, be sheltered, protected, and follow all his rules, but everything else beyond their family’s little world is sinful and wicked. They have all been so conditioned to obey and conform that to actually make an individual choice is probably impossible. This automatic obedience to authority also sets them up for abuse-from Steve, siblings, spouses, etc. You cannot say no to an authority figure. And the authority is Steve. Period.
    I have no problem with adult children living at home if it truly is a choice and they are being productive; no sleeping all day, playing online games or partying all night and being a leech on mom and dad and society. I have a daughter in her late 20s who came home for health related reasons/expenses. But she has a college degree, a job, a boyfriend, friends, plays sports, has no curfew, goes places alone if she wants, has her own room, etc. SHE makes her own choices. Not one of the Maxwell children has a choice in any of that.

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  17. I am sure that most of these “stay at home” daughters have little if any social skills with single men especially in the case of this daughter. Thus unless some man finds her and approaches her father as it suppose to work under courtship. Even then I wonder how well this woman would be able to handle a courtship with a potential suitor with her having been so sheltered. So sad.

    You’re right, Steve. There is little opportunity for any mixed sex get-togethers. Typically, the girls are together and the guys are together, but not together as one group. Reminds me of Islam in a way.

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  18. At Titus2.com forum, if a wife had a problem with her husband, she was told to gently appeal and then to pray for God to change his heart. I am afraid that many women would have been encouraged to stay in an abusive marriage heeding the advice in this forum. This is a common thought in Patriarchy – as many believe in the permanence view of marriage (i.e., marriage is not allowed even for divorce or abandonment).

    I, too, remember thinking about Sarah moderating very sensitive subjects at her young age. I didn’t understand Teri and Steve put on a front of sheltering and protecting their children from adult-type subjects of sex, porn, etc, yet Sarah was in the midst of it. She was the primary moderator and then flagged comments for her parents to look at if she had concerns. I remember some of those heavy topics.

    The one thing I have noticed about the Maxwells is that they have mentioned in several articles that their advice is NOT meant for abusive situations. I am not sure how Steve would handle that-wives should obey, but if the husband is beating her, the kids, or sexually abusing someone, then what? I don’t know how Steve would reconcile that, but from what I’ve read, I think the primary issue would be the husband’s sin. I’m not sure Steve would ever advocate divorce, but I do think he might say that the family must be protected. They do advocate submission, but not if there is actual abuse that will not stop. Since I’ve never noticed what he does think should happen, I can’t say. But he and Teri both have clearly stated that their advice is not for cases involving abuse.

    The family has grown more extreme, rigid, isolated, and sheltered through the years. I think if they had it to do over again, Sarah would not be allowed to monitor their board. These days Steve approves all comments and edits them if he wants. If he decides a comment is critical, inappropriate, immoral, rebellious, etc. then it won’t be approved. I bet he now regrets exposing Sarah to that board.

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  19. The one thing I have noticed about the Maxwells is that they have mentioned in several articles that their advice is NOT meant for abusive situations. I am not sure how Steve would handle that-wives should obey, but if the husband is beating her, the kids, or sexually abusing someone, then what?

    They may say this, but when the overwhelming message on the site is to pray for your husband when he wrongs you, it’s very unlikely that a woman would seek help. Those who have studied survivors of abuse know that survivors usually first put the blame on themselves. So even if survivors did receive good information, they might dismiss it because they may not even identify what they are experiencing as abuse. Instead, they take on some of the blame of the “problem” themselves before taking proactive measures to protect themselves or their family.

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  20. So beautifully laid out. My father went through this when I was in my teens. Thankfully, he no longer espouses this, as he can see that unleashing the gifts of women is beneficial to God’s kingdom, no matter where God places them.

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  21. Just an FYI: the link from your old blogspot blog to this one isn’t functional. It merely reloads the blogspot page (this is the link after the: “Comments here are closed…” announcement). I don’t know if you’re doing the coding or someone else is, but they need to go into line 628 of the source code and add an “http://” to the address link, otherwise it becomes recursive.

    I think your blog is a valuable resource and I’d hate to think that people might miss it due to a minor glitch.

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  22. I watched a few episodes of a “reality” show called Breaking Amish, about a group of Amish young people who left home to experience life in New York city. The young women on the show had obviously been sheltered from the world and taught all of the same things about a woman’s role, submission, etc. They had next to no contact with people outside their Amish community, and no electricity meant no TV, radio, internet, iPhones, iPods, etc.

    Yet the thing that surprised me most was how familiar they were with contemporary culture, music, slang, trends, problems, etc., even though it would seem they had been provided little opportunity to be exposed to it. They were also pretty curious about how the rest of the world lives and inwardly or secretly rebellious, taking advantage of the few opportunities they had had to experience the world prior to their visit to New York.

    What this said to me is that no matter how hard folks like the Patriarchy crowd try to shelter their kids, the world around them will still finds its way in, and the inward tendencies we all have toward sin will still find a way to work themselves out. So the only thing parent who shelter their kids like this are accomplishing is stripping them of the information and life skills needed to deal with what they will inevitably encounter anyway.

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  23. Canonical – – This is so bizarre. I wonder if Blogger changed their coding because that link used to work. I tried changing the coding to embed a clickable link and somehow the code changed to revert back to my old blog again. I don’t know how to fix that. I disabled the link and typed out the WWW address (so it’s not clickable, unfortunately, but it’s there). Thanks much for letting me know!

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  24. I was not brought up in a patriarchy home schooling family but was exposed to a lot of this thinking never the less. My parents are Southern Baptists. My mom passed a way a few years ago.

    My parents weren’t quite as extreme as some of the examples I see on this page. My father came home every day after his job, but left most all the parenting up to Mom.

    My Mom permitted my siblings and myself to attend public school and watch secular TV shows and listen to secular rock bands. But some of the other attitudes I see described above were there, especially that a woman is to defer to men.

    I think my Mom arrived at some of these views for a variety of reasons: she was abused growing up by a sibling and a father; her father was an alcoholic; she was raised Southern Baptist, and attended Southern Baptist churches her whole life, until she got too sick to go (S.B. churches emphasize the “wife submit” crud, and have a low view of women – to the point my mother was not even comfortable in the 1990s and later with the idea of a woman being POTUS or serving in other leadership positions), and from her personal interpretation of the Bible.

    I think my Mom focused on all the Bible verses that described Jesus or Christians in a meek, mild, gentle manner and ignored the examples of Jesus/Paul forcefully confronting people and not putting up with people’s nonsense – and SB churches and other types of churches encourage that type of Bible reading.

    Some churches or denominations encourage and push Christian people, especially women, to ignore passages that have Jesus or Paul or Peter being assertive.

    Your garden variety gender complementarians, who can be found among some Reformed, evangelical, and Ind. Fund. Baptist churches, also adhere to these low views of women, these views about a woman must always obey the spouse, even if he is an abusive dirt ball, etc.

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  25. To the person above who talked about being on a discussion board run by Christian control freaks. That sounds familiar. I’ve been on a few Christian forums that were like that.

    I joined one that prohibited members from giving links, which I saw nothing about in their rules page before I signed up for membership.

    My first week there, I wrote a post with a link to a page I thought their readers might find interesting.They refused to publish my post because it had a link to a page DEFENDING their views (about biblical prophecy)!

    The moderator sent me a PM telling me they don’t let members put links in their posts. I removed myself from their forum as a result.

    Part of the nature of the internet is posting links for other people, if it is pertinent to the discussion! I was incredulous that a Christian forum was censoring posts for having links in them, even links to material that defended their views. It was one of the dumbest rules / policies for a forum I’ve ever seen.

    I’ve moderated several forums in my day (some were Christian), and I allowed people to post links, even if it was to stuff I did not agree with.

    I got to wondering about their forum. I did a search on it, and I found out a lot of drama goes on there, from reading other people discuss their experiences about it on other sites.
    The moderators at that forum I left are notorious for banning people for stupid reasons, showing favortism, and they were reading, snooping through, people’s PMs (and people thought PMs were private). These are so called Christians behaving this way.

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  26. Thinking About This said,

    Later on after the momsboard dissolved, and a few of us found our way to other message boards, I figured out that this mom was married to a chronic drunk, who was addicted to porn, and even fooled around looking at underage girls “once or twice”. He forced her to wear head coverings, and dress with dresses down to the ankles. He had a nasty temper, and may of even beat her. She shared this with obvious hints on the other board. Those things were never allowed to be posted on the Maxwell’s board. It gave an appearance that everyone on there that we were all rosy, happy, growing, and thriving Christians (with a few everyday struggles) in the patriarchy movement. It was also obvious to me, that the only thing “wise” that husband did was command his wife to go on birth control. She went onto have a few kids anyway, and posted frequently how she had to always hush the kids or it could erupt his temper. It is very sad.

    I always wanted to be married, but sometimes I see stuff like that and feel relived I never did marry.

    I think a lot of Christians (not just the patriarchy guys, but your run of the mill Baptists and evangelicals and Reformed) “hype” marriage. Well, sometimes yes, sometimes no.

    I used to post to a forum for Christian singles. Several of us singles noticed that married Christians will, out of one side of their mouths, go on and on about how great marriage is (and they shame singles for being single, or act like our lives are not whole, thriving and complete because we don’t have someone to play kissy face with).

    But if you go into the forum at that same board for Married people, it is chock full of Christian marrieds complaining bout how awful marriage is, or, you would see preachers going on about how hard marriage is on televised sermons or blogs.

    Sometimes some married Christians make it sound like being married is a chore, to the point you ask yourself as a single, “Gee, maybe staying single is a better option.”

    Another single lady at that forum agreed with me. She said many Christian marrieds aren’t on the same page. They like to tell us singles to marry, that marriage is so great, but five seconds later they go on about how hard it is to work at marriage.

    Some married Christians and pastors make marriage sound like unrewarding drudge work.

    But they still tell us singles we should pursue marriage, but then, two second later, contradict themselves yet again by telling us NOT to pursue marriage, because we are making marriage an idol, we should be content in our singleness, if God wants us to marry, he will send the spouse to us.

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  27. Regarding JaneyN’s post.
    😯 Holy cow.

    If I was married, I would not hesitate to phone up the spouse and remind him to pick up a pizza. And I’d tell him to bring home some Pepsi with it too. 😆

    It’s so sad people do this to themselves. They could be enjoying life but instead make these choices they think are God-honoring, but God has nothing to do with, and so they limit themselves.

    JaneyN wrote,

    – One son, Christopher, has an online computer class that he teaches. Females may take it, but if a girl or woman has questions she cannot call and ask him. She must speak to one of his sisters, who will “provide encouragement” to the caller. They don’t want any “defrauding” to occur if the son speaks to an unrelated female on the phone. This is for her “protection” also. (Anna, one of the sisters has now taken the class so is probably able to actually help instead of just encourage. But that was not the case when the classes began.)

    Mmm hmm, this goes into something I’ve discussed over at TWW, and while a few people agreed with me at that blog, I was disturbed to see that a few defend this sort of stunted thinking.

    Christian teaching assumes that all single women are harlots with loose sexual morals who stalk out married men (or single ones) for a role in the hay. So, men are told to stay away from single women.

    Some Christian married ladies think the worst of single women, so one married lady at TWW was very much against the idea of a married Christian man helping single Christian women.

    Her attitude towards single Christian women was just deplorable and very prejudiced, but she sits there, even now, defending the prejudice, if I mention this topic in passing there. (And she has it in her head I am anti- motherhood or anti- SAHMism, though I have made it clear on many occasions that I am not.)

    I’ve never been that type of woman (one who has loose sexual morals), so I find these stereotypes by Christians of Christian, single women (or women in general) as being harlots, to be very demeaning and rude, and it ends up where single women are alone a lot, as a result.

    The men in such Christian stereotypes come across as being perverts, as though they are all just dying to rape a woman if given the chance.

    (Sometimes these stereotypes pop up in Christian advice on romance, marriage, and dating in Christian sermons, blogs, radio shows, and books by evangelicals, reformed, and Baptists.)

    If I were a Christian man and not a sexist, anti-woman, raping pervert, I would find such assumptions deeply insulting, but most Christian men roll with it! They agree to stay away from women, to not meet with a woman for lunch, etc.

    Married couples won’t invite single, Christian women out, or over, for dinners or movies, single men won’t befriend them, etc., all because of what is suspected the single woman might do, not that the single woman in question has actually given anyone a reason they would sleep around, or steal a married man.

    Christians seem especially prone to thinking the worst of single women, more so than secular society, though secular society can be kind of bad about this too. They also have some offensive assumptions about men.

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  28. Another Tom said,

    What this said to me is that no matter how hard folks like the Patriarchy crowd try to shelter their kids, the world around them will still finds its way in, and the inward tendencies we all have toward sin will still find a way to work themselves out. So the only thing parent who shelter their kids like this are accomplishing is stripping them of the information and life skills needed to deal with what they will inevitably encounter anyway.

    That was kind of the point of the movie The Village.

    (IMDB page: The Village, Director: M. Night Shyamalan.)

    The small town in this film was in 20th century America (IIRC), but the adults set up a remote village with no electricity, no television, and every one dressed like it was the 18th century. So, if you were a kid in that village, to you, it was 1765 or whatever. You had no idea about radio, TV, etc.

    The parents in the village dressed up like monsters to scare kids back into the confines of the town, if the kids got it into their heads to sneak off at night.

    The adults felt if they boxed off their children from 20th century life and vices, there would be no crime and such in their community. Spoilers ahead….

    Human nature being what it is, even in a 17th century setting, people still experience lust, jealousy, anger, insecurity…. so some guy (IIRC, it’s been years since I’ve seen the film) kills another dude for flirting with a young lady he has a crush on. (Someone in the village, one of the younger people, murders someone over jealousy or hurt feelings or something.)

    Some young woman from the group has to leave the Village (I forget why she has to sneak out), but she eventually walks of the village out to discover they are living in the 20th century, she sees cars and stuff (and she’s never seen or heard cars before).

    The big moral of the film is that you can try to wall your kids off from sin and corruption from the world at large, but sin is still there.

    Sin and vice cannot be avoided, no matter how much you try to separate and isolate yourself or your family from larger culture. You can ban your kids from watching secular TV and listening to rock videos, but they will still deal with the same emotions and struggles as kids who do.

    Every Christian patriarchy group should watch that movie, and conservative Evangelicals, Neo Calvinists, and Independent Fundamentalist Baptists.

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  29. When one wants to understand what God tells us is the proper way to live, we need to look no further than the Bible. Where in the Bible does it say that children are to “serve” their fathers? It doesn’t.

    The Bible does say: “Honor thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land …” EX 20:12. And the Bible does say: “And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.” EPH 6:4 And the Bible does say: ” …Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.” MATT 22:39. And the Bible does say: ” …They had disputed among themsleves, who should be greatest. And he sat down, and called the twelve, and saith unto them, If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all.” MARK 9:34-35.

    So, as a father, I do not see in the scriptures where my children should “serve” me. I see that I should not anger my children, that I should desire for my children the same life I desire and that I should seek to serve, not rule. I also see that children should obey their parents so they can have a long life.

    As a father of 3 boys and 1 girl (19, 15, 6, 3), I will tell you that my unique concern for my daughter and two youngest boys is that she and they be physically protected in this vile world. (I train my sons and daughter to be physically strong because “The glory of young men is their strength ..” PROV 20:29) But a young woman will not prevail in most fights with a male. Consequently, for now, my eldest son will accompany my 15 year old when she is in public. Not because I distrust my daughter, it is for her safety. The same goes for my wife. If I cannot accompany her in public, my son will whenever possible. It is not because I distrust my wife. The same goes for my 6 and 3 year old.

    My wife and daughter appreciate feeling safe at all times (they both had been abused as children). As my daughter gets old enough for college, she will obtain her concealed carry permit and will have a level playing field with anyone who seeks to harm her. I always feel safe in public, why shouldn’t my daughter and wife? Is that not loving thy neighbor as thyself?

    Do my wife and children feel they are being controlled? Absolutely not. They feel protected. Do they work for me? Absolutely not. I work for and provide for my family. Will my daughter find a husband? She has stated often that she would like to have the same type of family we have. We know it is God’s will that children leave their parents and become one flesh with a spouse except for those with a calling of chastity. We also know that God tells us to be fruitful and multiply.

    Lastly, to those who speak of the seeming inevitability of sin touching your precious children’s lives. My wife and I have had long talks with both teens starting around age 11/12 and continuing to this day about what types of sin are present in the world. We have searched the scriptures with them to educate them and edify them about how God feels about sin and about the mechanisms of Satan to introduce sin into their lives. It has not been our experience that our Christian teenagers have to inevitably be tempted and succumb to the sins of their generation.

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  30. @Steve Scott:

    Stay-at-home daughters doing nothing but serving daddy? Wow, I got the shaft. I got all boys. 😦

    Looks like you have to shave yourself.

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  31. There’s a reason why the snark board Free Jinger calls Steve Maxwell “Stevehovah.” I think this essay here encapsulates that. Steve is more important than God in the lives of his children, adult or not, and God himself is less.

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  32. @SW Discomfort:

    There’s a reason why the snark board Free Jinger calls Steve Maxwell “Stevehovah.”

    Does that make his daughter a “Stevehovah’s Witness”?

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  33. HUG wrote: “looks like you have to shave yourself.” A big LOL.

    I still have my Norelco rototrack my dad gave me as a teenager. I’m fortunate in that I have strawberry blond facial hair so that I can go without shaving for several days without anybody noticing. It blends in with my skin. I don’t have a 5 o’clock shadow, I have a Thursday shadow.

    HUG, could you clarify something and identify your modifier? Are you a decapitated lover of unicorns or do you dig on l’unicorne sans tete? 🙂

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  34. HUG, could you clarify something and identify your modifier? Are you a decapitated lover of unicorns or do you dig on l’unicorne sans tete? 🙂

    I have a fairly common name, and when you’re commenting on a blog with a couple other commenters with the same name, you have to distinguish yourself somehow.

    My handle comes from a picture I did for the AnthroCon conbook back in 1999, “The Age of Reason has No Need of Unicorns”, showing a unicorn mare getting the chop during the French Revolution. Pic has had a baseball-bat-up-side-the-head effect on everyone who’s seen it.

    Some years ago, I came across a blog i’d never heard of before which reprinted the 2000-word short story I did at the same time as the picture — don’t know how it got on the Net, but since I couldn’t find a publisher for the piece I let it ride. The pic and story are at http://thingsthatarerectangles.wordpress.com/2009/11/04/51-the-unicorn-story/ (note — some cussing in blogger’s intro). Read it and you’ll know why I started using my handle. The only fantastic element in the story is the unicorn herself; the intro up until the unicorn’s appearance is actually how I came up with the pic and the story.

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  35. Whenever I hear anything about SAHDs, I feel sad. In the wider context of the world, many women live on their own before marriage. I attended college and lived in my own apartment for about 5 years before I got married. Many of the supposed benefits to SAHD’s touted like safety and a chance to learn ‘advanced’ homemaking skills seem like shoddy logic to me. Shoot, I have a college degree in science AND know how to crochet, make cheese, can and keep a clean house. The two are not mutually exclusive; my sister-in-law is the third generation of college education/top-notch knitting women.

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  36. I believe the ages of the SAHDs who are unmarried is a valid topic. Since Christian Patriarchy believes that the highest purpose for women is to be a wife and mother and that father-driven courtship is the only valid way to get married, I do wonder why several powerful leaders in CP have been unable to find suitable spouses for their daughters who are billed as overly qualified for wife/motherhood.

    By comparison, I married at 30 to a spouse who was 31. In the society that I live in, that’s a pretty average age – old enough to have started a career and finished college, but young enough to have biological children. The largest difference between SAHDs and myself was the expectation that I would have the education/working experience needed to support myself gainfully. My parents struggled financially when I was young in part because my mom never finished college. My dad was a teacher, loved his job and made decent pay. My mom worked in customer service, found the job very boring and stressful and got paid much less than dad. Because of that, my mom pushed all of her kids – boys and girls – to get post-secondary training in a field that would lead to jobs.

    BTW, for any SAHDs who are reading, an advanced education makes you a more attractive spouse, not a less attractive spouse. Actually, my husband and I joke about the “dowry” I brought to the marriage: a comparable salary to my husband and better health insurance. That dowry has allowed us to become debt free very quickly.

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  37. “But do you know what religion is winning the growth race when it comes to conversions? Christianity.”

    I thought it was Buddhism. At least in the West.

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  38. It sounds to me like you have been hurt. Because your writing sounds like you have your fist clenched in rebellion against what God’s word says. I know Sarah maxwell personally. She is submissive to the n’th degree. That is what being a Christian is all about submitting to the will of God our Lord Jesus Christ. When Sarah finds a husband if that is The Will of Jesus Christ. He will be extraordinarily blessed. He will have a woman who gives his children a physical and visual example of submitting to the will of God (and no I am not saying that her husband is God).

    You spoke of being missionary minded Sarah for the purpose of serving Jesus Christ has reached thousands of children and adults (including me and my children)just by writing her books on being a family United by a vision of serving Jesus Christ by not being caught up in the world but in the pursuit of family and then the world as a family while keeping each other accountable in this dark and deceived world. Two scriptures come to mind “if a man care not for those in his family he has denied the faith and is no better than an infidel.”

    The next is the fact that Jesus sent his disciples first to his own house the house of Isreal. He said and I quote Jesus’ words “ye say the harvest is yet three months away, I tell you the fields are now white and ready for the harvest.” IN CONTEXT he was speaking of the people of Isreal, his own house. In the old testament it speaks of the nation of Isreal becoming a nation of Levites, preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ to the world as a family after all was fullfilled. When the Jews had him crucified and denied Him the commission went to the gentiles (the world). Now we the gentiles must spiritually serve our families first then as a family share the gospel of Jesus Christ with the world. The Maxwells have done just that and on a very large scale and not only have they been obedient to the Lord Jesus in his roles for men and women. Which has lead the children of that home to the Saving grace of Jesus Christ they are now taking care of their extended family and the family that we call citizens of the United States of America. But this land is a family that is not United because the teachings of home life the church and the massive relevance a close knit loving family, have role in spreading the Gospel.

    It is very obvious in your writing that your father did not rule his own house well. Your writing screams rebellion toward a fathers role of ruler of his house.

    1 Timothy 3:5 for if a man know not how to rule his own house well, how shall he take care of the church of God?
    1 Timothy 2:10-15 but (which become women professing godliness) with good works. Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.

    Genesis 3:16 unto the woman He said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow in conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.

    You spoke of late marriages. Isaac Abrahams son was a stay at home son in a somewhat of a nutshell. In that he worked with his father. He allowed his father to rule over him showing submission to Abraham several times first time was when he allowed his father to begin sacrificing him to God. The other in work (also carrying the wood that might have burned him). The next was allowing his father choose how he would attain a bride and when. Isaac was nearly forty years of age when he took Rebekah to be his wife and there was no courtship or dating his father gave him a bride he married her and knew the same day the bible says that Isaac loved her very much. So your understanding and perception is not illuminated by the light of God’s word it is riddled with the Americanized version of Jesus Christ. The United states America and most likely 98% of its missionaries who have not made sure of the faith of their family and the faith of the disUnited States of America family are most likely on their way to Hell also. It is harsh reality but God our Lord Jesus Christ does not see through a glass darkly as we do.

    So before you go judging a man like Steve Maxwell who rules his house well, who also was a friend to me in some very dark times. Who has helped me (a man who hated God used people and womanized more than 40 individuals drank myself out of the military whose only goal was to be a professional fighter and slogan was ain’t nothin like the feeling of crushing a man’s nose under your fist ) see the love of Jesus Christ through the loving kind way in which he rules his own house. My eyes were opened through the loving and kind ways that his children at an age too old in my past opinion to be obeying daddy, would submit. Because I saw his submission to Jesus Christ. You see I wrestled for 16 + years boxed for two, for many more years participated in mixed martial arts.

    The goal of each of these is to cause the other guy to submit to you. The word submit is very strong it means to break the will of. In layman’s terms we are to break our own arm and follow the will of Jesus Christ. Matthew 21:44 and whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.

    My suggestion to you is that you go and look in a spiritual mirror I bet you will see someone who has not fully submitted them self to the will of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and may be on their way to eternal damnation. Fall on the stone or the stone will fall on you and trust me when I say the other is very pain filled repent or it will be to late for you.

    MOD note: added paraphgraphs

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  39. ” I know Sarah maxwell personally. She is submissive to the n’th degree. That is what being a Christian is all about submitting to the will of God our Lord Jesus Christ. When Sarah finds a husband if that is The Will of Jesus Christ. He will be extraordinarily blessed. He will have a woman who gives his children a physical and visual example of submitting to the will of God.”

    Sounds kind of Neanderthal-ish. Will he carry a club and drag her by the hair, too?

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  40. Another man who can’t tell the difference between a woman being submissive to God and being submissive to him. Sounds heretical or perverted to me.

    No one is in rebellion to God here, Cameron. Jesus is the head of my household, not me, not my husband.

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  41. If I am correctly understanding him, Cameron believes it his God given duty to make his wife, if he has one, submit to himself–to the point of breaking her will. Be forewarned Cameron. Men who behave in such ways tend to land in jail. In my opinion it can’t happen too soon.

    If I have correctly discerned your character, my prayer is that you may find neither girlfriend nor wife, or if you have already done so, that they will find wisdom, courage and opportunity to escape from you–sooner rather than later.

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  42. Pingback: Pastor and Homeschool Leader Scott Brown Empathizes with Turkish President who says Birth Control is Treason | Spiritual Sounding Board

  43. It all sounds very distorted to me. Not “Christian” at all! I say let those gals live like other normal adult women. Get a regular job, their own apartments, have a social life away from overbearing and possessive fathers. Let them fall or stand on their own as independent thinking adult. That would do them a world of good with or without marriage in the equation.

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