We have normalized calling parenting what really is child abuse (Christianity played a big role in making this the case). Spankings, manipulating, silencing, removing agency, infusing shame, using guilt and fear as motivators... it is all child abuse, not parenting.

Children who often feel unsafe in the presence of their caregivers are not being parented, they are being abused and groomed.

While child abuse may result in obedience, that isn’t a goal we should we pursuing when it comes to equipping people to become healthy adults.

Obedience doesn’t give us tools to be the healthiest version of ourselves, instead it tells us to fit into other’s expectations of us. The idea that if you practice child abuse, then you are parenting and your children will be well and grateful to you later on is fallacious.

Abuse never yields wholeness. Your adult children may tell you they are grateful because you told them to compare themselves to people who seem worse; you told them many who are are well are not ok because they don’t fit into your narratives of what wellness is.

The truth is that if they compared themselves to whole people, and were able to know what wholeness and healing looks like; they’d know they are not ok.

Your adult children may play the roles expected of them to seem like they are well; that’s a response to their fear...

of you and of losing belonging. And that’s for those of us who could cope with the abuse through societally acceptable coping mechanisms...things like like being religious, being a perfectionist or doing whatever it takes to be able to hoard wealth; many of the ones who

couldn’t cope in acceptable ways have lost their lives due to the abuse they were subjected to at the hands of their caregivers.

Abuse disguised as parenting makes for adults with attachment issues, mental health issues, and complex trauma. It makes for adults who are...

emotionally stunted and conflate love with abuse, which makes them perfect targets for abusive people/systems to exploit them; and also renders them unable to love themselves and others in healthy ways. It keeps us all in abusive cycles through generations.

I have found that it is often the case that caregivers that resort to abuse disguised as parenting are unhealed themselves and they resort to abuse because they don’t want, or don’t have the tools, to heal and do better. For those who have the tools and means;

and still choose not to heal, you are a lazy caregiver.

We are not ok because our caregivers abused us, we are healing yes, but we are decidedly not ok; and we refuse to continue to perpetuate cycles of abuse. Child abuse results in traumatized adults, not parented ones.

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More from @JoLuehmann

27 Mar
When I say that so long as nobody is being harmed people’s decisions, choices, and actions are always acceptable and should be respected; conservative Christians often ask me: but who decides what harm is?

They do this to invalidate ‘harm,’ because if we can obscure the notion of harm, and they can decide that people going to hell is really the harm we should be worried about; then they are justified in crossing every possible boundary to keep people from hell.

They are “helping,” “saving,” not really harming.

That’s one of the main ways in which the concept of sin is weaponized against people; because they decide what sin is, which is what will send us to hell (except not because all we have to do is repent and then we are safe).

Read 10 tweets
19 Mar
Christians talking about a sexually explicit performance being evil don’t realize they are telling on themselves. Evil is something profoundly immoral that causes harm and destruction. Not simply something you disapprove of or dislike.

When Christians say that two women of color being sexual in their own time, without requiring them to watch or engage with what are putting out there is evil, they are saying our sexuality is evil. So women of color being sexual, causes them harm or destruction.

And how can they not see the connection between that narrative and the reality of a Christian man driving to massage parlors to shoot Asian women because they "tempted" him? How can they not see their narrative blames women, especially women of color, for their own response?

Read 6 tweets
18 Mar
Sex work ≠ sex trafficking.

Equating them harms sex workers and sex trafficking victims. Listen to sex workers and victims, stop making decisions for them.

The problem has never been sex work, instead it has been for a long time the white supremacist cis-hetero patriarchy.

Making this conversation about sex trafficking when nobody even has all the facts on whether there was sex trafficking continues to take the focus away from the facts.

A white Christian man decided that instead of dealing w/the traumatic effects of purity culture in healthy

ways, or instead of finding support, asking for help... he was going to murder Asian women because they “tempted him.” Ending his temptation to make him “pure” was a bigger priority that the lives of these women. Because he was taught the world revolves around white men,

Read 10 tweets
15 Mar
Christians often say “not all churches,” which yes, agreed. However, here are some signs of abusive churches.

A thread:

Obedience is demanded - coercing people into obedience and focusing a lot on behavior control and discipline as ways to evidence your godliness.

Isolation - a tendency to demonize anything that is not the version of Christianity they approves of. Secular info is rendered as dangerous, a door to “backsliding.” This also extends to demonizing people with messages that don’t line up with to their narrow doctrinal beliefs.
Belonging hinges on agreement - dualistic thinking is the norm, and rules of belonging are set with that mentality. You are with us, you believe what we believe, you behave how we behave; or you are against us, and obviously wrong. You belong if you agree only!

Read 11 tweets
14 Mar
All theology is made up. It’s all frameworks to explain/communicate things we can’t explain/communicate otherwise.

The question: is this theology true? Is irrelevant. The more important question: is this theology moving us toward a healthier version of ourselves? is helpful.

“True” when it comes to theology can be reduced to “that which the most powerful have agreed upon.” Not necessarily that which is verifiable, fact or reality. Because nobody can prove that the Canaanite god El is ≠ than the Israelite Elohim, or the same as the Christian God.

Theology evolves. The more information we have about humanity and cosmology; the more theology changes. While some frameworks were adequate for ancient people, and led them toward a healthier version of themselves; they are rather inadequate today, and toxic theology now.

Read 5 tweets
3 Mar
Thank you for the unsolicited education Brent. This is all stuff I have been told and was indoctrinated into growing up. Changing my mind required a lot of studying but I’ll give you a quick summary. Since you decided to try to teach me I figured I’d return the favor.

We start in Gen 19. First look at Ezekiel 16:49-50, now go back to Gen 19 and notice the issue was not homosexuality but rape! Because we can all agree rape is horrific, and per Ezekiel and Genesis the issue wasn’t at all consensual, respectful homosexual relationships.

Now let’s take a look at Lev 18:22 and Levi 20:13. Hebrew has 3 word for man: אִישׁ ('iysh), זָכָר (zakar), and גֶּבֶר (geber). And those verses look different in Hebrew than they do in English where it seems to simply imply male homosexual relationships are an abomination.

Read 23 tweets

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