Responding to Abuse – Notes from The Courage Conference

I had the pleasure of attending the first ever Courage Conference this past weekend. While there was a lot of healing and support taking place, there was also a lot of educating. Did you know that there are just as many cases of abuse in the church and in other religious communities, if not more, than the secular world? Or that evangelical churches have the highest rate of abuse, even more so than the Catholic church? Did you also know that the church has a history of protecting itself above its members, by burying the abuse and even blaming the victims? So what do we do when someone we know is abused? What are ways we can prevent abuse? Here are four essential takeaways from The Courage Conference.

1. Believe the Victim

Boz Tchividjian, professor and former child abuse prosecutor, said that the number one thing he hears from victims…

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Rape Culture – Cover Your Eyes

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While you were sleeping

Girl crying - WordPress Cover your eyes

Rape culture is when I was six, and my brother punched my two front teeth out. Instead of reprimanding him, my mother said “Stefanie, what did you do to provoke him?” When my only defense was my mother whispering in my ear, “Honey, ignore him. Don’t rile him up. He just wants a reaction.” As if it was my sole purpose, the reason six-year-old me existed, was to not rile up my brother. It’s starts when we’re six, and ends when we grow up assuming the natural state of a man is a predator, and I must walk on eggshells, as to not “rile him up.” Right, mom?

Rape culture is when through casual dinner conversation, my father says that women who get raped are asking for it. He says, “I see them on the streets of New York City, with their short skirts and heavy makeup. Asking for it.”…

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How To Ruin Your Life (Without Even Noticing That You Are)

Thought Catalog

Erin KellyErin Kelly

Understand that life is not a straight line. Life is not a set timeline of milestones. It is okay if you don’t finish school, get married, find a job that supports you, have a family, make money, and live comfortably all by this age, or that age. It’s okay if you do, as long as you understand that if you’re not married by 25, or a Vice President by 30 — or even happy, for that matter — the world isn’t going to condemn you. You are allowed to backtrack. You are allowed to figure out what inspires you. You are allowed time, and I think we often forget that. We choose a program right out of high school because the proper thing to do is to go straight to University. We choose a job right out of University, even if we didn’t love our program, because we…

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I’m learning th…

I’m learning that it doesn’t matter where or when you live, it will be difficult to be confident if you accept other people’s determination that that whatever you are isn’t enough.
We all have areas we need to improve upon, but accepting yourself “as is” makes it easier to allow yourself to start those improvements and the mistakes that come with trying anything new.~ D.McLain