Sunday, 14 September 2008
Monday, 8 September 2008
September is the month of the Seven Sorrows of Our Blessed Mother.
Today is her birthday, so Happy Birthday Dear Mother.
I am going to take a break from this blog for a while. I'll coninue my Homeschool blog-but things are too busy to keep two blogs going right now.
God bless everyone.
Tuesday, 2 September 2008
Sunday, 31 August 2008
Sunday, 24 August 2008
I don't know the rules.
Can someone in chronic pain or a sick child not nearly dead receive it?
If anyone knows I would be appreciative.
Wednesday, 20 August 2008
Tuesday, 19 August 2008
A few days ago I realised it was terminal when smoke poured out of the back of it; but to my children's astonishment-(and concern: the Computer Wizz thought I might end up in smoke too) it limped on for another day.
So then I was without a computer-having to grab the odd moment on the kids desk top.
But today my reconditioned second hand laptop has arrived. Very nice it is too.
So I can blog again....
Erm...what shall I blog about I wonder....
Anyone know why I am having such a game installing MSM? How can I talk to my friends across the pond when the blooming thing wont install?
Tuesday, 12 August 2008
I see that there have been many thoughtful, and quite heart rending comments on my previous post. Thank you to you all.
I have to agree very much with Rita's observation about how Catholic education can never recover while there is the National Curriculum and that deeply creepy organisation Connexions in our schools.
MaggieClitherow spoke of her husband's experience seeing the Precious Blood in a beaker. My children witnessed some pretty dodgy Masses in their time at school too.
Joe points out something I too have noted-many Catholic teachers avoid jobs in Catholic schools because of the 'politics'.
I do not doubt that brave heads do exist. In fact the local Catholic primary school had one such head until very recently. My older children attended that school which I thought was excellent. If he had stayed I may have had my younger children go to that school-but without him, it has already changed.
Like Philip, I too note that children don't seem to attend Mass during the hols. I get the sense from some families they have "better things to do". They simply don't get what the Mass is all about.
Susie's story illustrates how ignorance of the faith is effecting the next generation of teachers, and Adrienne who does know the Faith is left with an impossible task.
While I was away I had the chance to do some reading including some Chesterton. I bought the books from an internet site. I have learned a huge amount over the last 8 years from internet sites such as EWTN. It is the Internet and getting EWTN radio and TV that has brought me Home.
Nearly all the sites are American. THANK GOD for the Catholic Church in America because it is that side of the pond that will renew the Church here in the UK-of that I am sure.
I prayed for you all while I was away.
Tuesday, 29 July 2008
Mrs McLeod, it seems to me, is quite right when she points out the terrible state of Catholic school education. When she says that children are exposed to sex education and are taught erroneous things about the Church-she is right. When she says "Icons" is terrible-she is quite right.
It's the holidays and so my house is constantly full of other people's teens. My son's friends either no longer practice the faith or are still confused and lacking in understanding about it.
My daughter's friends have either more or less stopped practicing or are in the process of learning to ditch it-at school.
On of my daughter's friends who is what might be called part of an 'insider' family in the Church was shocked to learn during a discussion a couple of weeks ago that Satan actually exists! She is 14 and did not know this.
She attends a 'very good' Catholic school and explained to me a couple of days ago that they were studying St Mark's Gospel and about people in the Church. She listed Liberals, conservatives, fundamentalists and a couple of other political mass media views. I asked her what on earth that meant and she wasn't sure-just that everyone has different views. She doesn't know the BASICS of what the Church teaches and has yet to set eyes on a Catechism but they are teaching her the secular politics of the media view!
On St Mark she said they told her no one knew who he was or if he wrote the Gospel or if he had even met Peter. The whole message she is receiving is that the Gospels are not to be trusted.
How do these teachers KNOW St Mark never wrote the Gospel; never met Peter? Where do their views come from?
Not the Church Father's that's for sure.
It sounds like Spong is teaching her.
She is angry and confused. Hardly surprising really.
I've heard the (LAME) arguments for why I should send my children to school. I have heard the 'support you Catholic school' arguments. I would if there was a Catholic school anywhere near me that was Catholic.
Then there's the "send your children to be evangelists" argument. This is so wicked and lame that it barely deserves an answer. Children are being formed and are not meant to be in the firing line of an anti-Faith agenda. Jesus, as Dr Ray Guarendi points out-never used children to spread His message.
So excuse me if I do not sacrifice my children's eternal future to some ludicrous idea that little ones can evangelise schools!
Meanwhile I have only seen the lone figure of Mrs Daphne McLeod being willing to fight this fight. So despite my concerns-I will continue to support her.
Roy Schoeman will be in England and telling his wonderful conversion story in Oxford.
You can hear him speak at
7pm on 13th August at St Gregory & St Augustine's Church on the Woodstock Road Oxford.
If you can get there I highly recommend it. I have heard Mr. Schoeman's story of how he came from Judaism to Catholicism and it is well worth hearing.
I have his book 'Salvation is from the Jews' but I haven't yet got around to buying 'Honey From the Rock'.
He is a great speaker and very blessed to have been visited by Jesus and His Blessed Mother.
Visit his website HERE and if you can't get to Oxford you can find listen to his conversion story on that site.
Wednesday, 23 July 2008
Friday, 18 July 2008
Monday, 14 July 2008
admit to some irreverent thoughts. In order for God's Word
to grow the soil within us has to be good soil. If we are going to produce good fruit, the soil must be fed to give it that quality that will produce the crop.
Into every life a little rain must fall-but it takes a whole load of manure to produce good soil.
Many of us seem to have to handle a whole lot of ...erm...let's say 'crap' in this life.
Fr John Corapi says that terrible things that happen can work two ways with people. It can make them better people with a stronger faith in God, or it can make them bitter and turn away from God.
We need to be prepared to take up our cross and follow Him. Sometimes that cross can be downright heavy, but He says 'Come to me those who are heavily burdened and I will give you rest.' Often those burdens are made heavy by our own making. We think we can have it all our own way. We see Christ there-arms outstretched-but the eye of the needle we need to pass through is so narrow and that means ditching so much we are rather fond of.
The rich man could be like the young man who didn't want to sell it all and follow Christ, but these days I think many of us have had a wealth of personal opinions and ideas that we were unwilling to ditch so we could come to Christ.
If the Farmer can't find good soil or the soil wont absorb the crap but would rather remain clean and dry then the crop will not grow and people will go hungry.It's a tough journey for some of us. As I watch the horror story that is the Anglican communion at the moment I pray for those who are looking out to see Christ calling them through that narrow gate.
As the seed falls let it not be on those who look and look but refuse to see.
The readings for Sunday surely speak to those looking to Rome.
May God bless and guide all who seek Him first and may he bring them safely home to His Bride.
Saturday, 12 July 2008
When I taught the children, we did a quick version.
- ONE God-no others
- His Name is Holy
- Keep Sabbath Holy
- Honour your father and mother
- No murder
- No adultery
- No stealing
- No false witness
- Don't covet neighbours wife (spouse)
- Don't covet neighbours goods.
I split them into the first three are about God and right worship; 4 is about family and Church and 5-10 are about family and community.
After they had learned them we could do some Catechism.
It's made it easier for me to remember them anyway.
Wednesday, 9 July 2008
I don't know what Father Melchizedek makes of what is going on with the Anglicans and some Catholic responses to it. There seems to be a sad lack of understanding and even respect for the renewal of the Priesthood of Melchizedek that Christ brought about as He gave authority (yes that word) to the Apostles.
When David sang of Solomon "Thou art a priest forever of the the order of Melchizedek" (Ps 110:4) he was prophesying the end of temporary Levitical priesthood and the re-newing of the priesthood of the father and first born son-the priesthood of the Bridegroom.
Jesus founded His Church-His Bride on the shoulders of Peter and the apostles and he gave then authority to follow His Will. This was not a licence to do as they pleased. All authority is limited and the authority of the Church is limited by what God asks for. Surely that is only right and just.
If a group of people is going to claim to be followers of Christ, one can expect I would think that they follow Christ and not their own wants and opinions. Sadly the CofE has shown itself as nothing more than a club in which the rules for membership can shift and change with the shifting demands of various members of the group.
WHERE IS CHRIST IN ANY OF THIS? He just doesn't seem to get a look in while all the political and personal agendas fly. Paul (OTSOTA) has pointed out on Holy Smoke just how narcissistic many commentators present themselves as being.
In the beginning, Scripture tells us, God made them "male and female". Did He make a mistake? Was he supposed to have made them not equal in His sight but the SAME? God has decided the roles men and women are to have in life and when they are treated with dignity and respect there is nothing wrong with different roles. The priesthood is inextricably tied in with how God revealed Himself as Bridegroom and Father-that is not a woman's role.
While this can be a difficult area of Biblical exegesis and Tradition for the average Joe to grasp. Well, I found it hard to begin with and I reckon I'm about average- I would have thought the intellectuals of the CofE and Catholics should get it. The reason they don't seems to be because they are not looking for Truth. I'm sorry if that sounds harsh-but we are called to seek first the Kingdom.
I hope that those seeking to enter the Church now are doing so because they are seeking and finding the Kingdom. That they are putting Christ at the centre of the their lives and trying to follow Him. If all they are doing is looking for something that serves their personal agendas a little more comfortably, then I don't see them either crossing the Tiber or staying here.
God bless them and guide them.
Saturday, 5 July 2008
Wednesday, 2 July 2008
Okay I know there are times when we need to actually BE there for a friend. There are those special events, those terrible times, and the occasional crisis when we simply have to get there even if it means getting of a train for a few hours to get to the other side of the country. We've all had to do that now and again.
And of course there is the every day kind of friendship over coffee. Those days in the park while the kids play and the grown ups chill and those times when someone turns up on the door step out of the blue with a bunch of flowers.
But what I am saying is there is nothing less in the kindness and sharing of online friends, and this has surprised me somewhat. But it seems to be true.
So God bless all my friends.
Sunday, 29 June 2008
Today the Holy Father prayed for Christian Unity.
Peter and Paul were the dynamite of Christ that really got the Church founded.
I am in an awkward position for typing - sleeping baby moment-so here are links and stuff to start the year:
Catholic Culture does us proud on this subject.
The CTS offers stuff.
That should get the year under way.
God bless you and may you be showered with graces this year and may many I am praying for be knocked off their horses!
Thursday, 26 June 2008
PRAYING FOR HEALING by Dom Benedict Heron OSB
Meanwhile as my last hosptial appoitment was so bad I nearly left the room in tears I have decided to be pro-active. This is the internet world and patients have access to all sorts of information that we didn't have before. Instead of trying to avoid information in case Iupset my already rude and incaltricent doctors I have decided to get myself fully informed and even look for answers elsewhere.
So today I had my first visit to a Chiropractor.
First visit was free. The Chiropractor took my history and the first thing I noticed was he LISTENED to what I said! He asked questions and listened to the answers. If I asked questions he answered them clearly and did not once try to dodge the question.
He poked and prodded me much the same as the neuros do but with a few extra things I've never had done before. Then hewas a bit bemused.
You see it seems that it could all be .... a trapped nerve!!!!
Now then; I have been in pain DAILY for over five years. I have been using crutches and a $*&$"* wheelchair because I can't walk properly or far. If it turns out this is all due to a trapped nerve that should have been straightforward to diagnose I'll...I don't know.
Even though I would be really, really angry I would also be exstatically pleased because the chiropractor can sort it out. If it IS a trapped nerve I am looking at being able to walk again and be pain free!
PRAY people PLEASE.
He wants to see the MRI done in 2003 so I have phoned my GP and asked for it. I'll let you know how that goes.
One of the things that has struck me is the attitude of the staff at the Chiropractor clinic. The receptionist was kind and polite. The chiropractor himself was polite and greeted me with a handshake. He did not once treat me like an idiot.
What has happened to the culture within the NHS, that patients are treated so rudely; discarded; ignored and generally seen as gettin in the way? And how many die or are killed because treatment is too much like hard work?
I saw it back when I was a nurse and I thought it was awful then, but now it is all over the place. My friend has cancer. Her treatment has been nick named the "Economy Package" because of how she is being treated.
All I can say to anyone going through something like this-try and find the energy to fight back.
Saturday, 21 June 2008
Friday, 20 June 2008
Now I was vaguely aware that for those parents in the UK who are registered as homeschoolers with their Local Authority the most common reason given for pulling a child out of school was bullying, but I wanted to do a bit of research.
I was interested by what I found as I pottered around the net looking at bullying and homeschooling. There are a few very keypad happy people out there who want homeschooling banned. THEY personally disapprove of the system and said parents who homeschool are 'fundamentalist', 'biased' and children brought up this way would be...wait for it...intolerant of others. There was some mockery over a home educated child reintroduced to mainstream education who found a lesbian couple's rather unpleasant behaviour difficult to handle.
I know a lot of homeschoolers. I can assure these dictatorial people that most of the children I know who are homeschooled are very well socialised thank you. Research from the USA and Durham Uni here in the UK would suggest that on average homeschooled children are better socialised than school children.
When it comes to 'tolerance' I have to say that while there seems to be a lot of people out there ready and willing to BAN homeschooling and force parents to send their children to school no matter how damaging that might be to the child; I have yet to meet a homeschool parent or child demanding that schools be banned, no matter how bad those schools might be.
So, I just have to wonder, who the intolerant ones are.
Monday, 16 June 2008
The older ones, being teens, are not quite so highly expressive in their greeting, but they do show pleasure at their father's return.
The little ones like to try and be up early to have breakfast with daddy before he goes to work. If they sleep over and miss him the 5yr old Superhero can be quite upset. He in particular likes his 'dad time'. I think it is important for boys to have that 'dad time.'
I don't think it is very easy to be a dad these days. Working close to home is a luxury most men don't have these days, so little ones often find dad is a distant man they see briefly before bed. We are lucky that my dh gets home at a reasonable(ish) time and I keep the little ones up a little so they have time. Dad then puts them to bed and prays with them. It is very important that the children have prayer time with dad.
He leads Grace at meal times.
He has less time with the older ones and this has caused some concerns now and then.They get a bit cross when they want to have time with their dad-and there isn't any. As a result he has had to make a special effort to make the week last out so everyone has time with him.
Meal times are important as all the family sits around the table and we get to talk about our day, ideas and plans. This, too is important dad time.
A great deal is said these days about the dads who are not there for their kids, whether they live with them or not-and yes, we've all seen these dads; but there are dads out there trying to do their best in a society that thinks putting your family first is daft.
So, God bless them and St Joseph pray for them.
Sunday, 15 June 2008
Tuesday, 10 June 2008
Forgiveness fascinates me, mainly, I think because I don't really know how to do it. I am not altogether sure what it is. My main confusion comes from the point of, what to do with forgiveness that isn't wanted. God forgives us all. He has paid a very, very heavy price for the privilege and yet we are not forced to accept this free and gracious gift. We can forgo the obligation and retire to the pit of hell if we so desire. While the Church does not tell us WHO is in hell, She is wary of saying no one is. While God loves every person He has made with infinite burning love and certainly wants us all in heaven with Him, we don't have to go, and I think it is fair to say a lot of people choose not to. When Our Blessed Mother showed the three children at Fatima what hell was like-it was not empty.
But we are all called to forgive; "Forgive us our trespasses," we pray, "As we forgive those who trespass against us."
So what do WE do with forgiveness that is not wanted?
I am assuming that forgiveness is as much a good for the forgiver as it is for the forgivee. It is about an act of will in which the wounded party decides they do not want revenge, nor even justice-but mercy for the other person.
I think part of my own confusion comes from being told that forgiveness included two things; forgetting and carrying on with the other person as though nothing had happened. Well okay, there are times when forgetting and carrying on are easy enough-those times are when the other person is sorry, or the offence was small or the offence was such that the other person couldn't possibly know how offensive it was.
But it's the BIG stuff I wonder about. Who can forget abuse? I mean for so many the abuse went on over a long period of time and was habitual in the abuser. How can you forget such a huge chunk of life? And HOW is it possible-well it isn't is it?- to carry on with an abuser as if nothing had happened even IF (and it seems to me to be as rare as hens teeth) the abuser is actually sorry.
What does a person do with forgiveness for that sort of thing?
I am of the opinion-and I am still not sure about this-that remembering what happened is not a sin. It is not possible to forget. Living as a victim, blaming it all on the abuse IS a sin. Perhaps it is through the offer of forgiveness not taken that grace to survive is received. But even for the person who accepts grace and works to overcome the abuse there are times when it all just seems to be there again.
Sometimes the anger comes back. I really can't see if that is a sin. Dwelling on it probably is-but there are times when something happens that causes frustration; places that can't be visited; people who can't be trusted-because of the situation.
Then in the end if the abused person wants mercy for the abuser does God give it-or must those who refuse mercy always receive justice?
It seems to me that many people who have abused others and think they can do this with impunity are so sure God will simply let them into heaven that they see neither the need for His mercy nor fear of His justice.
I am not sure what God expects of us-apart from prayer I suppose.
Friday, 6 June 2008
I am to name ten people I would most like to spend 10minutes with.
I am going to choose people I have never had any minutes with and would like to:
1. Mother Angelica
2. Fr Benedict Groeschel
3. Charlotte Mason- Although reading so much of her work is like spending time with her.
4. G.K.Chesterton- I wouldn't speak I would just listen.
5. Papa Beni. OOOh the things I would like to ask him.
6. Some of the bloggers I have only managed to talk to online. Is that a copout answer? It's true though.
7. The Duggers. I would just LOVE to.
8. My children's future spouses; oh the questions I would ask!
9. I would like to spend more than 10 minutes with some of my ancestors who kept the Faith during the Reformation and the persecution of Catholics that followed. I would ask them about how they survived.
10. Dr Ray Guarendi- well I just had to include him didn't I? :)
My dd would like 10mins or more with her beloved Ainsley Harriot. DS would spend ten days with Stan Lee and knowing my dh as I do I am sure he would like at least 10minutes with Dr Tanya Byron.
Consider yourself tagged. Yes YOU.
Tuesday, 3 June 2008
These situations are all too common. The biggest side effect of a vasectomy that is recognised even by the doctors (who try to underplay other nasty side effects) is it is so difficult to reverse!
No one can be so sure of their future that they can take such drastic action to wound their own bodies so permanently. I have seen so many stories where the man wants to try and have more children-for whatever reason and then finds that even if he can get the reversal there follows massive heartache as infertility remains.
In the story on the news I was wondering how many women are turned away from NHS abortions. Haven't heard of any. This man who wants to father another child will have to find the money to reverse the awful decision he made so long ago before he realised that life happens even to people who don't plan for it to happen.
Vasectomy has been linked in some controversial studies with prostate cancer and it appears there are more studies that show prostate problems and vasectomies do go together. Then there's the link with autoimmune diseases because the man's body builds up anti-bodies to sperm. If that wasn't enough there has been a new study that suggests some dementia's are linked with vasectomies. That research is contentious to say the least.
Contraception is sacrosanct somehow and no matter how much misery it causes; infertility, cancer, depression, general family destruction-it still HAS to be a good thing, doesn't it?
Meanwhile from what I have seen in my quiet corner of the world, more and more people-especially women, are saying to hell with it-out with the horrible stuff and in with a thermometer and a chart.
Sunday, 1 June 2008
I love the way the Scripture readings at Mass always fit together so well. Four readings; four threads that weave a theme. God offers His People His Law and with it comes a "Blessing and a curse." The blessing for those who obey God and a curse for those who go after other gods (or make themselves gods). We avoid the curses by remembering to take refuge in the Lord as "The Lord is my rock of safety."
Then we hear from St Paul that works of the Law will not save us-Christ has superseded the Old Law; fulfilled it. Then in the Gospel we are told what the Lord expects of us. The Beatitudes have just been preached (as Father reminded us in his homily this morning) and then we hear the words of the blessing and the curse. Jesus is rather clear when he says saying "Lord Lord" and making out we have done stuff in His Name will not get us into the Kingdom. We have to do what He tells us to do-not what we would prefer Him to have told us to do. We can prophecy, cast out demons but if we haven't built our house on HIS rock then it is work in vain. Remember the man who built his house on the sand was just as busy building his house as the wise man up there on the rock-but all his work crashed around him when the storms came.
And the storms came to both houses.
So we have to DO what God tells us to do-not make up an idea of Christ and do what we would quite like it if he said. That's a false god isn't it? And we have to be where He says we should be. Get out of that sand.
Wednesday, 28 May 2008
I have added James Mawdsley's blog and I have just written a letter to the Queen. His plea is a good one and I think the more of us who support his letter and petition the better.
Sunday, 25 May 2008
Friday, 23 May 2008
Their lukewarmness and apathy was a sin so vile that Christ said he would vomit them out.
And He did.
Neither the town nor a church exist in Laodacea any more.
What did the Laodacean Christians do that was to terrible?
I think they did nothing.
They saw the pagan culture around them and simply lived as part of the culture, going to Mass but comfortable with the increasing horrors of the society they lived in. No one spoke up, no one sacrificed themselves.
We know that killing the elderly, the disabled and abandoning babies to die were common. We know that there were abortions- the Didache (written around 80AD) condemns abortion and potions for contraception.
We know there were Roman cults that included sacrificing children to gain wealth and happiness.
We know that women were treated as a commodity and that they and children could be bought and sold as slaves.
All of this happens today. Just about all of it happens here in the UK.
And there is a church here in the UK- a church in England, in Wales, in Scotland. It seems a liitle cool.
Wednesday, 21 May 2008
I do not doubt there are Catholics out there who have both the ability and the media savvy to stand up and lead the rest of us to oppose all this evil that is crashing in on us-but for some reason they wont.
While the poor self pitying cripple was wheeled out on the news to say he needed a lot of babies murdered to find him a cure (well, not those words but that's what he meant)-there was no self-assertive cripple to say adult stem cells are working and will do fine thank you.
I tried to fight when it came to the horror of children needing to be adopted by a mum and dad, being sacrificed to political expediency and handed over to unstable families particularly homosexual couples. But what could I write? After I had written to a couple of MPs it came to light that Catholic adoption agencies had been handing children over to unmarried couples and single gay people already. A gay couple would be better than a single actively gay person for crying out loud! What in heaven's name were/are these agencies thinking? Why did they pretend to be Catholic?
My husband worked with a situation in which a couple were allowed to adopt siblings despite the fact their marriage was already very fragile indeed. As soon as the papers were signed the couple split and took one child each so they split the children as well!!!! Social services seemed completely unable or unwilling to deal with the situation.
Another family I have known where they managed to have children with severe behavioural and moral problems but continued to adopt more children. How did they get them?
My fellow homeschooler Amanda works so hard for the Pro-Life cause. She isn't a big name, or a famous blogger-but she does more than any of those people with the tiny resources she has.
God bless her.
I feel powerless sometimes-well a lot of the time. And I am so angry when I look at those who have been given a position of authority in our Church and other Christian communities and DO NOTHING.
I will keep praying and fight when I can and blog about it even if no one reads it.
In the end the Immaculate Heart with Triumph.
Monday, 19 May 2008
Some of you may remember-though it was so so long ago you may not- that I had our car converted so I could drive it and then the DVLA has to know all about it and they took FOREVER and EVER to send the new licence. I had gotten to the point of thinking I would never drive and would have to rely on taxi's (Ye gods they are expensive) for the rest of my life. But at last I have the licence and I am driving! You have been warned.
Friday, 16 May 2008
Monday, 12 May 2008
People of all persuasions were muttering and even getting a bit panicky about the idea that we seemed to be entering the...dum, dum, der...End Times.
All of this excitement however was squished by terribly sensible Chestonian types who pointed out that we have been living in the End Times since Pentecost.
So here we are celebrating Pentecost when the Holy Spirit descended on the Church; Mary the mother of the Church and the 11 remaining apostles. The message of Salvation was about to burst forth from the upper room in down town Jerusalem and set the world on fire.
we have been baptised in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit and in His Name we are made whole. We can then face the end of the end times unafraid (well, a little nervous maybe). The end of the end times must come, and each day obviously brings us a little closer to that end, not just for the world but for each of us. We must as individuals face death and judgement and the choice between heaven and hell, but we should also be ready in case the Second Coming happens to us. It has to happen to someone doesn't it?
I do believe that Pope John Paul the Great was indeed the 'Spark' to come out of Poland to prepare the world for His Second Coming, as Jesus told St Faustina. It was our beloved John Paul who gave to us the Feast of Divine Mercy as Jesus asked St Faustina. The Pope called us to throw ourselves on God's mercy as most of us surely need to.
In celebrating Pentecost we must remember that this 8th day is a time of grace and as we hurtle towards Judgement (as we must) we can feel Christ is our Hope as we bathe in His Mercy.
So Pentecost isn't just about something that happened so long ago it hardly seems to matter any more-Pentecost is now, the end times are now. We shouldn't get all hung up about it, but neither should we be ignoring it.
We need to be alert and reading the signs of the times- and God knows there are lots of them!
Thursday, 8 May 2008
Thursday, 1 May 2008
Monday, 28 April 2008
The psychologist said these kinds of parents were very often authoritarian- by this she did not mean parents who have true authority in the home and can set appropriate boundaries for their children's behaviour; but rather a control freak kind of authority in which secrets must be kept. I know parents who would demand absolute loyalty from their children-not healthy loyalty as one would expect from a loving family, but secret keeping-bad secret keeping. Children would be made to feel fear and guilt at the thought of trying to tell anyone else what happened within the confines of the family.
The other thing this psychologist mentioned was the 'respectable veneer' these kinds of parents often clung to.
Again I was struck by this. I too know parents who have done this. They cultivate a sense of being a pillar of society, known in the local community or church as someone 'good'. Under the veneer something rotten lurks of course, and if any whiff of this gets out those parents will usally blame the person who has seen it-cutting themselves off, or even keeping clear of people to avoid being found out.
I have seen families where friends are not allowed to come to the home, where children are isolated from any friends they make at school for fear of any 'secret' getting out.
So, one thing I think I have learned about abusive parents is this; THEY KNOW. They are not ignorant that what they are doing is bad. Healthy families do not ask children to keep secrets like that. They are not afraid that someone might find something out about them and they are not constantly bitter and angry about other people who may or may not have sussed there is a problem.
What fascinates me the most is how boring evil is. Satan is incapable of making anything new; he can only take what is and drain the colour from it, twist it out of shape or break it. I am coming to the conclusion that like Original Sin, all evil is not a 'something' but a lack of something. And I think there is always a deep anger-a fury even, against anyone who might shine a light on them.
I have seen that anger first hand in more than one situation working with or knowing abusive parents. It's something I think social services need to be much more canny about. I am shocked to see families that are rotten to the core being allowed to adopt and foster children.My dh has mentioned a case like that only a few days ago and the results for the child have been utterly dreadful.
Finally the psychologist went on to say she thought a lot more of this kind of abuse went on that we could imagine. I want to disagree, I really do. I want to say, no, it's rare-and I think the extreme cases like this one and the one my dh is working on are fairly rare; but abusive families are not and they need to be.
Dr Ray Guarendi has written about this somewhat in his book Back to the Family. I've mentioned it before. Many of the excellent parents in this book had survived pretty dreadful upbringings and had made an act of the will to NOT behave the way their parents did. It is not inevitable that abused children grow up to abuse, no matter how hurt.
Sometimes cases like this one in Austria may bring back horrible memories for survivors of abuse, but those memories serve only to ensure that act of will remains.