Friday, 5 April 2013
Dear Emily - my fears for our daughters and sisters
I fear for us too.
I read your words, I see your photo that shows me you are a beautiful and loving young mother. Responsible for raising sons. Blessed with a loving husband. Who in your piece sounds wonderful, he takes your hand every evening whilst you walk in your garden- beautiful.
But yet he fills me with fear too because he has read this piece and presumably finds it acceptable.
Why if he loves you didn't he ask what was troubling you?
Or why you were you feeling so stressed? And how could he help to ease that?
Or and maybe this will shock you why couldn't you just have a good argument, clear the air and have great 'make up sex' or just an exhausted 'I love you cuddle, we'll get through this together' after you realise you are both exhausted and the 'this' is not about 'that'.
You are young parents with the hardest but most rewarding job in the world.
I have been there dear Emily. 4 daughters, 2 years apart in age. Working as a midwife/nurse/childminder of friends children to supplement our income whilst we planted a church.
Yes I have felt exhaustion like that and frustration when Alan my lovely husband didn't get it asked and me to do something so reasonable as help him 'chop onions,' and my anger rose and tiredness spilt over into why he could not see my exhaustion.
But dear Emily my fear is you subject women again and I can't condone or appreciate this piece in any way.
In fact it has troubled me all week.
I have read all the comments, the fors and against.
I know this response you may never read. I know you will continue to write to a much larger audience of women than will read this response and that is why I fear for us.
My dear feminist sisters I love you all. I love your struggles and your determination to bring equality to our world. Sometimes at the price of your own sanity and even your own lives.
I love that I get to read of your daring to rise up against injustice and that I was able to share that with my own daughters.
I prayed over my girls too Emily, 'tender hearted leader and courageous warrior'.
I believe in them I see them now, they have become these things and I am one very proud mum.
My words to each of my girls was to go and when you find 'the one' then learn to always remind yourself why he was that special someone. And grow with him, stand by him, cheer him on and appreciate why you fell in love with him. Then on that day when you are very tired and he askes you at an inconvenient time to 'chop the onions' and you snap you will have journeyed enough together to get through this. You will be partners together wanting the 'best for one another', learning to prefer one another'. But honestly Emily a good marriage can handle a good argument or heated debate, because unlike your seeming fear of these words my girls are 'fiesty' and they know their own minds.
The submission of one group to another is intolerable whether it is race, social status or gender.
Mutually preferring one another is the most beautiful way to serve.
When I read the Bible I see a picture of a God in Christ who submitted Himself to become like us, took on the form of a servant and showed everyone male and female how that is to play out.
I truly fear for us if this teaching rises and once again we return to what you say we lack- submission to males.
I fear because not all marriages look like yours dear Emily. Many unfortunately look like your dear Lebanese friend. And if we lived with your teaching when does leaving abuse ever become the thing to do. After all we submitted wives will then tell our sisters 'stay just a little longer, your beauty and submission will stop the hateful words and fists'.
Like that really works for the majority of women around our world. No Emily I fear your words more than the statementsfrom the most strident complementarians, they appear sweet but they are a very ugly pill to swallow for many many women.
Love Bev x