Submission or subjugation…

I had a very interesting online chat with Tommy (Jack) and Emi this afternoon.  I plan on writing a post based off of it but first I would be extremely interested to hear your thoughts.

AnaYelsi Sanchez: “Unfortunately, a lot of Christian women have embraced the posture of “submission…” (subjugation) to their detriment. One way this subjugated posture is often endured is by pretending that we as women don’t need anything. We can do it all and ask for nothing in return—run the household; birth and nurse the babies; feed, care for and support the husband; maybe work a job to help meet the financial needs of the family; and, if there’s time left over, serve in the church, most likely in the nursery. In a world where the woman is intricately connected and subjected to the needs of everyone around here, there is no room for dreams of her own. She exists for everyone else. And she can continue to live that way if she pretends she is not vulnerable and needy herself. Once she admits her own need (to dream, perhaps, and to give expression to those dreams and ambitions), the natural order of family and societal dynamics is thunderously shaken.”
– Phileena Heuertz, ‘Pilgrimage of a Soul,’ pages 37-38.

AnaYelsi Sanchez: This is Christopher L Heuertz’s wife. How amazing is this couple?!  I just want to spend my days hanging out and learning from them.

Amanda Buitron: we just discussed this in my sex and gender class yesterday sooo true

Jack Humphrey: no comment

AnaYelsi Sanchez: then why was that necessary?

** Jack (Tommy) responded about it not being a man’s place to respond or something along those lines but it was deleted.

AnaYelsi Sanchez:  not at all. Men make up half the body of Christ. They are our partners. Their input and understanding of our identity in Christ and in society is of extreme importance.

Jack Humphrey: Basically, my viewpoint is that its not just Christian women but men as well to submit. The whole purpose of our faith is to submit everything to God and through these actions we show our faith in action. Our world is flawed. We can discuss this until the cows come home.

AnaYelsi Sanchez : ahh but I think until we make a distinction between holy submission and subjugation (which Phileena is addressing) we would be having two different conversations.

It’s an important distinction.

Jack Humphrey: Can you explain the distinction then? Men and women tend to communicate on different wavelengths.

AnaYelsi Sanchez : subjugation is forced submission; submission without concern for the needs or value of the other person. Phileena is addressing a forced submission which doesn’t take into account the hopes, dreams, and worth of the woman in question.

This form of submission is not biblical at all.

AnaYelsi Sanchez: Submission Is Not A Synonym For Subjugation

Jack Humphrey: Who is forcing these women into subjugation the church, society, their husbands? They still have the freedom to decide. By the way I have not met a subjugated women yet that does not need anything. Thanks for the English lesson lol.

AnaYelsi Sanchez: sorry* not ignoring you. I got a phone call.

I think that’s a very basic response to a very intricate issue (not meant to sound insulting)

“force” is not always an overt thing. We experience a great deal of it as women (as do men). …So yes to all of the above: church, society, husbands. Also, keep in mind that this is speaking to specific subcultures within those groups and is not a condemnation of them overall

AnaYelsi Sanchez: ‎”freedom” is a tricky concept. The greater law of our culture may give us certain freedoms but our backgrounds, economic status, subcultures, familial relationships, etc… can limit those expected freedoms.

Jack Humphrey: We all come off insulting sometimes and guess what if you get offended its because of your lack of confidence of being you. I can roll with the punches. I get everything that you are eloquently saying but I still think the individual can overcome all social norms that they face if they want to.

AnaYelsi Sanchez: I disagree.
If that were the case we would live in quite a different society.

AnaYelsi Sanchez: But i’m enjoying the discussion :)

Emi Schuth: Wow… Try telling a young woman who is raised in a severely patriarchal family, told by her father, mother, her church that she has no value but as a wife and mother that she isn’t being forced into subjugation..

AnaYelsi Sanchez: It is absolutely possible, with the right motivators and personal strength, to overcome ones situation. But cases of subjugation and even more extreme cases of outright abuse often deprive an individual of either of those things.

Consider Stockholm Syndrome, In mere hours a person can have their psychological well-being so compromised that they willingly submit to the authority of their captors; even seeing them as saviors.

Our sense of freedom and power can be very fragile and if we live in a culture that promotes certain roles for any extended period of time it is understandable why people would adhere to it without question.

AnaYelsi Sanchez: I was surprised it took you so long to comment, Emi LOL

Emi Schuth : I agree, I think it’s an easy out to say no one is forcing them without examining the psychology behind the subculture.

I am reading “Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement”. I will have to check out this book you were reading… :-)See More

Emi Schuth: BTW, I was on a desk at work and not on Facebook!

Jack Humphrey: I think this whole thing comes down to a person’s ability to find the truth and understand their worth to God. I enjoy easy outs by the way.

AnaYelsi Sanchez: Hmm… I haven’t heard of that book. How is it?

AnaYelsi Sanchez: Tommy (Jack),
I love you.
You’re a good sport.

Emi Schuth: I agree that it is about them finding their worth in God, but sometimes a person’s home life is so distorted that they aren’t given the tools to do so.

Check out the blog “no longer quivering” it has some amazing stories from strong women who… have escaped this.

It’s a pretty good book and sheds light on a lot of famous outspoken figures *cough James Dobson cough*See More

AnaYelsi Sanchez: adding the blog and book to my “must read” list right now. Thanks!

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2 thoughts on “Submission or subjugation…

  1. Minus all the christianity, I find that I can relate to this pretty well. I was married once, and yes, i was somehow expected to do it all; go to school full time, work at night, take care of the house, dogs and cook, as well as maintain the cars, balance check books, and pay the bills…

    I had nothing short of a break down because of those demands until I literally hated the person I was with for making me do that; my grades suffered, my writing was suddenly a pipe dream, and I was crushing under the weight of doing everything in that marriage while he relaxed and only did the gender-stereotypic things.

    Worse yet, my husband used guilt trips as a means of coersion; I was a former catholic. Guilt works very well on me.

    It was a horrid situation, and I didn’t get out on my own. We had to have a huge fight (he wasn’t loyal) in order for me to leave. I don’t know how long we would have continued if it hadn’t been for that relieving event of being betrayed, or else that could have gone on forever.

    • This was incredibly honest and open. Thank you so much for sharing with me. I’m glad to hear you’re no longer in such an unhealthy relationship… and that you’ve returned to your love of writing (you’re quite good at it).

      Be blessed!

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