Straining Credibility

These Family Life weekly moment emails are amazing. They never cease to push beyond where I expect the church to go in pandering to the women in the pews. And for the most part they know that BEHIND every great woman is a supplicant man, so the donations to FL ministries flourish and the men say bring it baby, bring it.

This week Dennis shares how a man was writing to explain what he was looking forward to accomplishing by attending the FL marriage conference with his wife. Allegedly the man wrote:

I need you to talk to my wife about:

 

  1. Getting her to stop watching bad TV shows
  2. Getting her to read the Bible
  3. Getting her to listen to Christian music
  4. Getting her to support the charity work I do
  5. Getting her to realize that she’s a sinner
  6. Getting her to stop drinking beer
  7. Getting her to stop wasting our family’s money
  8. Getting her to stop worrying about fixing up our home
  9. Getting her to realize she’s setting a bad example

Do you believe this is even real? I’m sorry, I have a huge problem accepting that he randomly found a man saying these things, rather I believe he flipped the genders and rationalized it that, well, it could easily go either way. But he choose poorly with this example. Drinking beer? Support HIS charity work? Incredible…Dennis also said:

I can’t squeeze all of them onto this page, but you’ll get the idea.

Really? A man sat down and made a list that the 10 points recounted are merely a representative portion, to give us an idea?

For every man who would even THINK these things, how many women are there out there who would?

Then, how many men who would think them would think them in a cogent list all at the same time?

Of those, how many would write them down and share them with Dennis Rainey?

Dennis then responded:

“Well, sir, I’ve got a better idea. What if instead of making this long list of things you’d like to see changed about your wife, you made a list of what you needed to change? What if you made a list of what you most appreciate about her? What if you made a list of her top-three needs from you, along with a deadline for you meet them?”

I can only make conjecture, but lets suppose the list was from a woman….I mean that’s a stretch but stay with me…would his response have been the same? Or would he have probed softly and then reinforced her desires for these good things but gently prodded her to go about getting them differently. Would he have turned it around on her asking her to question what she can do to meet the guys needs?

When faced with this list which likely came from a woman, not only did Dennis most likely not want to put something this common out with regard to what a woman would do, knowing it would resonate wildly with men, he most assuredly did not want to face the women of his ministry, especially his wife, as he took the woman’s concerns and flipped them into her needing to work on herself.

Of course I could be wrong. Do you think I am?

Is there hypocrisy?

Are there some things that should damage the credibility of men and women who post on Christian manosphere blogs? Do the same rules apply to men and women in this regard?

Can we consider frivorce one of the central rallying cries of the Christian manosphere? I think so.

The sphere clearly considers slut-hood a rallying cry, it being the antithesis of female virtue. The Christian blogosphere has less than zero tolerance even to the point of denying redemption as a possibility in many cases.

What then does the sphere consider about frivorce? Is a woman who divorced her husband for frivolous reasons a credible advocate for submission and male headship? Can a woman who divorced a husband for frivolous reasons become something of a leader of women, a teacher of women, towards the ends that the sphere seeks?

These questions have male counterparts as well.

I’m not positing an answer, I’m posing the question. We could do well to guard against tickled ear syndrome in ALL its forms.

 

The Game of Risk

I was reading Vox this morning and came across the following:

“Not much” is the correct description of any male activity that ranges from “I spent the evening rearranging my collection of Intellivision cartridges in order of release” to “I spent the evening snorting coke and banging a pair of Victoria’s Secret models”. Remember, women are solipsistic. They don’t actually care what you do, except insofar as it relates to them.”

This is a good example of what I mean when I talk about the building blocks of game having some shining gems among them. Knowing that what is written there is true and applying it to one’s own though process is indeed valuable. If men think this through, what it means and what it could possibly mean in their own lives I assert that most will have an Ah Ha moment where they realize that precisely this dynamic has played out, and that they have been doing the wrong thing.

The only place “not much” will need to be augmented is when the topic is not “whatcha doin?”, but “whatcha thinkin’, feelin’?” That is a separate topic.

There is broad application of the concept represented in the quote. Let’s say the man in the article had anger problems, or an addiction. If he genuinely had one of those issues and he genuinely begins to address it, he likely will go overboard in an effort to show, not tell, attempting to prove empirically that he is making progress, that they want to make progress, and lookee here sweety how good I’m doing and how much better I am getting. This will fall on deaf ears at best, and perhaps even annoy his GF at worst. Its a puppy face after pooping on the rug.

The point here is that the applicability of concepts that, when aggregated, are overly defined as the system known as game, require risk taking. Cliche, if you love it set it free, so forth, like that. This IS valuable information for the Christian married man. But i contend it is not part of some ethereal thing that must be constantly defined.

if half the energy spent selling game was expended explaining little nuggets like this one the transformation that game gurus speak of for men, and Christian game adherents speak of for men in the church could more easily take hold. It should be painfully evident selling a game religion to Christians is of limited utility. Selling the game of risk, however, may yield individual and collective results.

A New Game

During the last 30 years, maybe more since that 30 years is my entire professional life, I’ve seen lots of herd behavior in the business world. Herd behavior has always been present in society in general with trends and fads and the like. And I suppose some trends and fads have informed the business world as well to the degree these things could be passed from one organization to another before the advent of rapid communications. It seems though that the nature of the things that proliferate across the business community has evolved, or more aptly, devolved over time.

Some are tangible things that you can touch or have measurable utility, even if prone to being overdone. Take SAP for example. It is a software that became a must have for big companies as the CEO’s saw others getting it and wanted it for their group lest they be caught “short” by the ruler in the country club washroom. It could be the Deming lemmings whose offshoots from SPC grew into ISO 9000 and Six Sigma and everything GE every time, continuously improving. All of these things unleashed an army of seminars and consultants to support them, in that way giving the appearance of industriousness with less actual consideration to PURE tangible productivity. Woe is he who questions the oracles of these systems.

People liked being part of these revolutions. People liked it a lot. When there was a lull in invention of systems like software or a mathematical methodology, the hunger persisted. To feed it, the community turned to peddling buzz concepts. One of the most specious examples of this was introducing and up defining the idea of the simple word……change. A guy writes a book about some mice in a maze and how when the cheese was moved they had to adapt and overcome and this succeeded in taking the simple concept of change and elevating it to beyond Zen. Grown men stumble breathlessly from seminars clutching at three ring binders muttering “change, embrace it” like a mantra. Each acts as if he or she has been somehow cosmically touched by an ancient wisdom, that change will occur and it must be embraced. C level executive jobs under the change banner are now a matter of course in large organizations, mention of change management on one’s CV is de rigueur, and around the conference room table it is not if but when someone will invoke a cliché regarding change.

(As an aside I always wondered how change got so sexy when the thermodynamic principle of entropy is related and actually able to be studied and used. Change is a very cheap substitute. I digress.)

The people I have worked with over my 30 years in professional life who have embraced this type of conceptual mysticism have shared certain characteristics of personality. I imagine there will be one or two of them read this and take exception to what I have already said, let alone what I am about to say. They grab hold with religious fervor, and they end up letting systems run people rather than people running systems. I guess this is for a sense of belonging that comes with the perception that one grasps something that others don’t. To a man, no empiricism, no logic, no evidence can penetrate the veil because the systems are designed to answer all questions, usually with questions. They send the questioner off on tangential inquiry, or as a last resort they fall into wrangling about definitions. They consume, and they perpetuate. Google any of them and see.

That’s how Game strikes me. Setting aside what Cane Caldo has said and continues to say about it (which I agree with and hope he continues) regarding the Christian man and Game, the predictable lines of defense (lacking a better term) have manifested, well,  predictably, like a favored pastime. “Well first we must all figure out what game really is”, or “the reason you discount game is you do not understand it” or “just because you have no Game doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist’ or “I do not accept that what you are talking about is really Game”…so forth.

There is that sense of being an insider that comes through, or possessing something that others do not or cannot grasp. It is not sufficient, oh no, to list off a couple of valid and verifiable facts that are ever present in pretty much all game defining derivation. To allow that someone sees a couple things they like and are easily explained would rob the mystique, reduce the magic, and most importantly it would let the dang pedestrians in on it. We can’t have that.

Is there something to what is described as Game? OF COURSE there is. But no matter how many layers of complexity can be manufactured, no matter how sophisticated they make it, or worse, no matter how emotional or shrill the subscribers become, it is common sense being filtered through some innate need to be involved in something different, something special, something exclusive. This opinion is likely to be upsetting and met with assertions of my stupidity. Someone will find a misspelled word, another, an error in grammar, and still others, just generic criticism of the way this is written. Like that. That line of defense is even beyond the last one.

It doesn’t really matter what the response is because it is no more likely that I can present an iron clad case for what I am saying than it is that Game adherents can for what they  assert. The difference is, I am admitting it through sarcasm. I am not actually arguing anything definitive as much as saying there is really nothing to argue. The proof text of game is akin to Art Bell Coast to Coast proving the existence of extraterrestrial life. Anecdote after anecdote coupled with a sense of a community of the informed under lay the thing.

Men insist Game is real and explanations fly off them. Women, possessing a reluctance to challenge it in a manner not unlike complimenting the naked emperor on his cloths, rush in with shaming language to attack men who question Game. They want to plow pioneering ground, to be Condoleezza Rice to Game’s Augusta National. It makes challenging Game a risky proposition, and that serves to reduce the overt efforts toward same.

There is no proof that Game is anything beyond a handful of tips that coincide with some aspects of human nature, some good, some bad, some neutral. It is a religious belief steeped in a faith in something about which two true believers can pontificate and modify all day everyday for an infinite amount of time and never reach completion. This is not a thing, per se, it is not something deserving of its own special unique noun. Unlike say Christianity, about which indeed there is great debate regarding particulars and specifics, the discussion of Game has no centrality, no summary or core principle that can set the topic down and leave it lacking a need for further refinement. It does not happen.

In any case, agree or disagree, it’s my opinion and it is a seemingly narrowly held one, a special one. If you disagree it is because you just don’t get the point. It is immune to, no, impenetrable to critique, and unable to be questioned, for the mere act of questioning demonstrates a mind incapable of understanding any attempt to answer.

Repetition posing as wisdom

Here we go again. Ask Roger has taken on the question of who is the boss of the house. And he has done so with that too familiar “lets clear the air” tone that men take when they write something ostensibly tom men but tailor it to the women who will read it.

Its shameful that this is THE standard Christian narrative about Ephesians marriage, and that the false dichotomy of tyrant versus servant has to be created each and every time.

Husbands are to lead with love, humility, unselfishness—not with power, authority and “divine right.”

Anyone provoked? Anyone challenged by the gutsy proclamation above? Anyone wiping brow thinking “whew, how its all sorted, I was just never able to GET that“?

Roger even frames the bigger picture with a female friendly filter saying:

The primary Biblical purpose regarding marriage is companionship

Is this correct? Or a better question, is this complete? God could have created a male companion. In fact gay marriage can easily fit within the narrative that the primary purpose of marriage is companionship.

I am not plowing any new ground suggesting that sex must be acknowledged when discussing the purpose of marriage, even to the predictable reaction asking the question about the hypothetical woman or man who due to age or health can no longer have sex. That is again constructing a false dichotomy, a straw man extraordinaire.

Roger reveals much when he says

The operative directive to husbands is that they love their wives like Jesus loves the church and lays down His life for the church.

This after removing submission as potentially operative by using the false dichotomy of tyranny versus service. He elaborates in a manner that would make Joel and Kathy proud,

I often think of the husband as being like the sun and the wife being like the moon. The sun gives off the light and the moon reflects it back. Whatever the husband gives to his wife she often reflects right back to him. Show me a husband who is pouring anger, resentment, disapproval, disappointment and hurt into his marriage and I will show you a wife who is soon reflecting anger, resentment, disapproval, disappointment and hurt right back to her husband.

On the other hand, show me a husband who is pouring in love, acceptance, forgiveness, approval and compassion and I will show you a wife who is soon reflecting love, acceptance, forgiveness, approval and compassion right back to her husband.

I have looked for conditionality in the Ephesians ordered marriage. I have never found it. What I have found is the contradictory language of pastors who at once claim no conditionality when speaking in general terms, then laying it on thick when they get to the specifics.

By the way, remember how wives are to respect their husbands? Respect is a big deal for men. Unfortunately, respect does not come automatically. Respect is cultivated over time by the husband’s careful loving and caring for the emotional, physical and spiritual needs of his wife

No qualifiers, no conditions. No mention of her proclivity for exploitation based on needs versus wants confused by primacy of emotion. Unfortunately respect is just not very easy for snowflake. He has to earn that. The wife is placed in a position over her husband as she measures his performance versus her (often fickle) criteria and empowered to act, or in this case not act, if she is left unsatisfied.

On the same site, a post on the same page called The Fifty Fifty Conundrum appears. While I find these little word games annoying and pointless (50/50 vs 100/100) because people mean the same thing when they employ either of these, the details of the article explain how it IS unconditional that each party give to the marriage. How does that work when her role is conditional on her approval of his efforts?

This is problematic, yet ubiquitous. The church teaches these two things simultaneously and sees no incompatibility between them. Its almost as if the church is a woman saying whatever she feels at the moment as if it is equally valid to the exact opposite thing she felt moments before. Its double minded period.

I tried to explain. “The fifty-fifty rule means somebody is always giving up something. It seeds resentment and discontent. At the least, husbands and wives will keep score.  The husband thinks that since he sat through that boring romance movie, she should go with him to the monster truck rally. The wife thinks that because she spent the whole day cleaning the house, he should take her out to dinner.”

Hmmm. So, the husband is taught that IF he

is pouring in love, acceptance, forgiveness, approval and compassion [as above]

the wife will be

reflecting love, acceptance, forgiveness, approval and compassion right back to her husband.

And this is 100/100 exactly HOW?

How can these people be taken seriously by linear thinkers?

They can’t.

Finally, in yet another display of whatever it takes thinking a woman writes “Be Subject to One Another” in which she claims,

I have seen many controversial sermons, messages, and articles tackle the role of wives in Ephesians chapter 5. But you know what I have not heard as much about?

  • Husband: guide your wife so faithfully and righteously that you keep her holy and blameless- never lead her into a bad or dangerous situation.
  • Husband, nourish and cherish your wife (mind, body, spirit) with all the care and caution of self-preservation. You would do anything to keep yourself alive, well, satisfied, and happy. Do that for her as though her body (mind, spirit) was your own.
  • Husband, love her just like Christ loves the Church. Really. Like he ministered to her. Suffered and died for her. Pursues her every day to make her love him like he loves her.

O this I can only repeat one of today’s popular humorous exclamations……”.really?”.

I know you’ve read all this before. That’s my point in calling it repetition posing as wisdom.

Is it any wonder the state of things?

http://www.crosswalk.com/church/pastors-or-leadership/ask-roger/the-boss-of-the-house.html

Marriage creates fatherhood. No marriage, no fathers.**

This cannot be repeated enough. Like the economic wisdom in the previous post about regulations, the following is a truth that the social conservatives seem painfully immune to:

Here is the second unpleasant truth: homosexuals did not destroy marriage, heterosexuals did. The demand for same-sex marriage is a symptom, not a cause, of the deterioration of marriage. By far the most direct threat to the family is heterosexual divorce. “Commentators miss the point when they oppose homosexual marriage on the grounds that it would undermine traditional understandings of marriage,” wrgeites family scholar Bryce Christensen. “It is only because traditional understandings of marriage have already been severely undermined that homosexuals are now laying claim to it.”

Thank goodness at least there are a few pundits out there with the courage to say this.

Here is a sad juxtaposition….today on World Net Daily, Joseph Farah has a screed against gay marriage, and suggests that it will lead to the ultimate collapse of our society. He lists a handful of other harbingers of our demise as well, and nowhere on the list did he see fit to mention DIVORCE.

Fish, you…ARE …wet! YOU   LIVE   IN   WATER   YOU   IDIOT!

Then as I read down the opinion page I find Farah has linked to yet another outstanding article by Stephen Baskerville (which is actually a reprint of a 2010 article) on this subject; and article which illustrates the absurdity of the present Chick Fil A initiated culture war that has all the self proclaimed courageous pundits breathless. Baskerville, as usual, paints by numbers. The picture is precise.

The world of no-strings heterosexual hookups and 50% divorce rates preceded gay marriage

Daily we read about the epidemic of fatherless children. Around Father’s day we get fed a steady diet of ever more histrionic calls for men to step up. That is funny, because it is just like the so called courageous pundits to pick the easy target.

Maggie Gallagher attributes this silence to “political cowardice”: “Opposing gay marriage or gays in the military is for Republicans an easy, juicy, risk-free issue,” she wrote in 1996. “The message [is] that at all costs we should keep divorce off the political agenda.”

Picking on dads, just as the focus on gays, is a politically safe target. You know what’s really really sad? The support of gay marriage is more easily sold than the support of fathers. In fact, I submit that many of the politicians currently weighing in against gay marriage are watching the poll trends in case they need a mea maxima culpa in the future.

When the issue is divorce, and specifically fathers, there is simply zero risk they will find themselves on the wrong side of that issue as they persist opposition to gay marriage to buttress their family value CV while avoiding the maelstrom that would come from women in EVERY quarter if they spoke out against divorce.

The father is the weakest link in the family bond, and without the institution of marriage he is easily discarded.

This matter of fathers jettisoned from homes is ostensibly what motivates some in this corner of the manosphere. While we do pursue all sorts of interesting tangents and posit theory after theory, lets not forget right now, while the so called culture war is laser focused on gay marriage, that amongst our own peers, the church, gay marriage is going to affect less than 1% of them, where divorce has a good chance on landing in our vary own lap.

Read Baskerville’s piece here:

Divorced From Reality

Go to his website and read everything there, including reading his book “Taken into Custody”

** The title is a quote lifted from the article parsed in this post, please read it in context           there

The Personal Jesus TM released her

Besides just telling her she is awesomely awesome, and being a male BFF in the LJBF tradition, the Personal Jesus TM brings real value when he starts to empathize and allow his views to be influenced by her telling him of her circumstances. After all, husbands are told in 1 Peter 3:7 to live with their wives in an understanding way, AND they are told to love their wives as Christ the church. Therefore is it not evident that this means The Personal Jesus TM would also be equally understanding of her?  And doesn’t being understanding mean empathizing? And once he empathizes can he not then, because he is feeling what she feels, understand endorse her (understandable) choices?

Apparently so.

I came across a letter requesting advice on AllExperts.com, where a woman has written about her transmogrification into happily divorcing happy happiness chasing ever happy girl. You can read it here.

In her opening paragraph she gleefully reports her decision to divorce her husband of 20 years:

I am a follower of Christ and I have decided to divorce my husband of 20 years.  I am rejoicing because I am confident that God is allowing me to feel good about this decision.

She summarizes her general contention regarding God not really being serious about what He has joined together:

I believe that He allows divorce if you have done everything in your power to avoid it, including asking Him to direct you in the situation.

No one would have ever thought to ask God about it would they? Its good that she hastens to recommend that edgy piece of advice and you guessed it, she followed that advice and it landed her right in the spot that has her, in her own words, rejoicing.

It is ten years later and I am confident that God has released me from my marriage.  I have had many sessions with God where I have asked Him to direct me.  

There we have it. She asked. And he did not disappoint, because not only did he offer her release, he even offered his own thinking process by which he justified his decision.

I asked Him why He has blessed me and my kids, but not my marriage and He reminded me that I married my husband outside of His will.  I had forgotten that.  He reminded me that I never depended on or trusted in the Lord to give me a husband.  Also, I grew up going to church and living a Christian life, but did not really feel that my husband was a Christian.  He acknowledged that God existed, but did not show any fruit of the spirit.  At that time I was a baby Christian without a mature disciple to guide me so I believed that acknowledgement was the same as turning one’s life over.

Nope, the man was never a real believer anyway and was never supposed to have been the one for precious. She on the other hand has rewarded God with her devotion:

Since 2003 I have turned my life over to Christ.  I have grown to love Him as the first love of my life.  I understand more about His word and I realize that I am married to a man that does not love me as Christ loved the church.  The unequal yoke is devastating and I believe that God has prepared me to leave this marriage.  I am sure that this misery is what led me to need to total and complete dependence on Him.  I am so happy and do not regret anything that has happened, again because I have grown in so many awesome ways.

Starting with the first two words in the second quote above….”I believe”….we know it is The Personal Jesus TM she is talking about. Revelations from The Personal Jesus TM often begin with those two words because as we have ascertained he IS her, and vice versa. OF COURSE she believes…. she told her to believe. Go her! When you substitute she in her role as her own Personal Jesus, it is no problem understanding how she comes to the realization she ultimately does about her own happiness:

One day I realized that God does want me to be happy.  He forgives mistakes and bad decisions.  He wants me to learn and grow from my bad decisions, not rot in them.  If I don’t value my happiness and make choices that are for my own happiness, I will live my life in a passive state of default.  He wants me to depend upon him fully and walk by faith, not by sight.

He wants her to depend on him fully. He is going to back her in her decisions and support her quest for personal happiness; what’s not to like about that arrangement? This is what happens when we live in our own head too much, when we create an illusion of dependence on God that is in reality dependence on an imaginary friend like Harvey the rabbit who is a quasi-separate embodiment of our deepest hopes and dreams and will grease all skids to achieve them.

If you read the entire letter you get a small flavor for what was happening in her marriage, even though we cannot be sure. If we accept that Christian women are basically unsettled, and that is not a stretch to accept, then its simple to understand how the husband was inadequate where a higher power would have the moxy to fix her and keep her fixed. It appears to be yet another case of someone being evangelized by The Personal Jesus TM .

This letter was illustrative, but not at the level of detail I’ve been seeking. Fear not. I’ve found an entire blog, written over a two year period, where a woman writes in great detail about her decision to frivorce, the thoughts and feelings she experienced, and ultimately the resulting feelings after the divorce. It is so detailed it almost enables us to reconstruct the dialog between the woman and The Personal Jesus TM.

Stay tuned.

 

Yee-haw, Yahoo didnt ask Anne-Marie Slaughter about a pregnant CEO

Margaret Carlson at Bloomberg has juxtaposed the Marissa Mayer (new Yahoo CEO) statements on being a pregnant CEO with Anne-Marie Slaughter’s well read and commented article about having it all. Carlson raises some good points.

Marissa Mayer rocked the male- dominated world of technology when she was named chief executive officer of Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO) — and announced she was pregnant.

The author describes how being the CEO, though a decidedly time consuming position, may be one of the easier positions to have while parenting a baby and young child. It is just great to know that because of her executive status the child will not get in the way of the company’s business.

Having worked in the past for what is now one of the worlds largest oil companies, French Total, when they were smaller and called Fina in the U.S., and knowing the senior executives and the CEO because of office proximity, I can tell you that to be the CEO of a major company requires (as I wrote about here) that he of she erase the line that separates the individual from the company. It is way more than just being potentially engaged in the business 24/7; it is figuratively BEING the business 24/7. Most companies require that the spouse, and even the children become props for the business as well. They carefully craft a persona with the idea that there is a narrative to which they must keep.

Carlson brings to light some important points. She mentions that other women may like the imagery of what has happened but at the same time feel depressed because they are unable to accomplish anything similar.

Then there’s money, which is one thing that separates the happy working mothers from the harried working mothers. Mayer, wealthy from her time at Google Inc. and destined to be well- paid at Yahoo, may well change a diaper. But I bet she will never have to run out at midnight to Wal-Mart to buy a box of Pampers. Peek inside the household of a woman at the top, and you will find out that she doesn’t just have a great nanny, she has several. It’s a family version of outsourcing.

She does some justice in not laying that all at the feet of government, saying women choosing this path are torn.

We don’t know, and neither does Mayer, whether her energies and emotions will be divided in ways she isn’t anticipating. The crushing desire to be in two places at once doesn’t end with breastfeeding and frequent visits to the pediatrician.

This difficulty is not due to a failure of ambition, brains or effort, or of legislation (that said, better maternity leave, flextime and child care would help). There’s no legislation that will put more than 24 hours in a day or get you home for dinner and bedtime. If you have a child with problems — and who doesn’t at some point? — it’s even harder.

True, there is no legislation that will do that. But….there are choices women can make.

That makes me wonder, are those cheering the loudest mostly childless, or mothers who have already raised their kids years ago? Because mothers who very recently dealt with, or are in the process dealing with a new baby at home are feeling a little bit different about this…milestone or millstone.

In “An open letter to new Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer” blogger Pamela Sitt definitely had a different take on the whole thing. She establishes her credibility first

I’ve done something you haven’t (yet): I’ve had a baby.

Trust me when I say, you won’t know what hit you. And I’m not just talking about projectile spit-up.

Then she tells Marissa how the cow ate the cabbage.

Three weeks in, I don’t think I could walk yet. That might be a slight exaggeration, but at 10 days I definitely couldn’t make it up or down stairs. Just sitting on the toilet was painful. I’ll spare you the details of my marathon labor, but suffice to say — with a shout-out to the Summer Olympics on NBC — I should win a gold medal in pushing. If you haven’t taken a moment to appreciate your functioning bladder today, you should.

But while she tries to explain to Mayer that the physical effects of childbirth, and the exhaustion of the early weeks of having an infant are not things to flippantly say you are going to simply work through, she continues to offer her praise for the accomplishment,  albeit with the caveat that Mayer is making the thousands of regular working mothers, the ones who are not chief executives, feel lazy and inadequate because they did succumb to the effects of birth on the body and the exhaustion of sleeping on an infants schedule.

So in the end, Marissa Mayer has a broken and failing company to fix, one that has beaten that last four or five execs who attempted to rehab Yahoo, and she has a baby to raise. She has stated she will take a little time off but work through the leave. Some women across the country are chanting their approval as this new ground gets plowed. Others are feeling even more inadequate because they know that what is possible for the CEO is not possible for the mid level manager or the administrative assistant.

Throughout all the articles I have read about this, few if any have sincerely taken the child’s position or explored those revered words “best interest”. The focus has been on the plowing of new ground, and the ways in which the situation can work, that leading to the ever present calls for more codified relief for all mothers who work in the form of longer mandated job protected paid leave.

While blogger Pamela Sitt waxes a bit emotional about the profound effect a child has on his or her mother by suggesting that Mayer will likely elevate motherhood to the position of being her biggest accomplishment, that’s as far as she takes it. Frankly, I disagree. Its just a guess, but those of this level of professional drive and sacrifice see the child as something to carve out time for while working, not work as something to carve out time for while parenting. Hence we end up with a coddled surrogate raised child who, later in life, is saying things like “my parents were never there for me”. Mayer’s kid may well be just another 1 percenter poseur protesting with his or her generations occupy wall street wannabes one day. Or worse.

This breaks me…..

These are  a few of the new children’s books aimed at helping kids cope with divorce. I am the first to admit that I hold women more to account on the prevalence of divorce, and when I imagine the image of a woman reading one of these books to her kid(s) I honestly cannot decide if fury or tears define my reaction.

At Daddy’s on Saturdays,                                                                                                          Its Not Your Fault                                                                                                                       Koko Bear; Good Bye Daddy                                                                                                 Mama and Daddy Bear’s Divorce

Yes you can have it all if you are careful

Sheryl Brady has written a piece at Fox News that is ostensibly about putting kids first no matter what one’s dreams or aspirations are. It would seem a reasonable angle from which to come at this issue of having it all, now that Anne-Marie Slaughter’s article Why Women Still Can’t Have It All, was published and has started follow up dialog across the modes of media. Since Sheryl is a wife, mother of three, grandmother of five, and campus pastor for the Dallas-based mega church, The Potter’s House I didn’t know what to expect really. Here she is having ample progeny of her own and a demanding job to boot; she should speak wisdom from experience. Instead, she tows the main stream party line with some cautions thrown in to make her look reasonable. You cannot escape the heralding tone she takes as she mentions the pregnant Yahoo CEO and mentions her own CV.

There is much irony buried in statements like the following:

While debating whether or not women can “have it all,” there’s one thing we should remember: regardless of a woman’s work or home situation, her children must come first.

and her quoting Fredrick Douglass

Fredrick Douglass once said, “It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.” I couldn’t agree more.

when the largest and fastest growing source of social pathology in children and adults is being the child of divorce and/or growing up having no father in the home. I wonder how The Potter’s House does on divorce in the church. My guess would be they have a Personal Jesus (TM) stand in the lobby, offer strong empowered women like Sheryl as examples of great Christian women,after all, she is the author of the forthcoming book, “You Have It In You!: Empowered to do the Impossible” and is scheduled to speak at the Woman, Thou Art Loosed! conference to women in October. (Oy, loosing women after that conference may draw an inordinate number of PUA’s to the Dallas area in October. Dalrock please send a man on the street for interviews.)

She goes on to state a whole litany of things that are risk free and obvious, like be careful, make priorities, know your purpose, and by the way having it all means different things to different people. Is it just me or is this kind of thing not indicative the the increasing infantile nature of our country? Life coaches are telling people how to live, PSA’s are warning us to stay in the shade and drink water on hot days, and topically we see articles like this essentially wasting time and cyber space finding not so new ways to state the obvious.

She tries to break it down into bite sized pieces. Prioritizing somes natural to women, she implies.

Prioritizing is a woman’s best friend. It allows us to sort out the critical from the noncritical, and what can be done from what cannot be done. By clearing the mind and mentally organizing the tasks at hand, one can fully focus and concentrate on each task, whether personal or professional.

Really? Prioritizing, in my experience, is an area that women struggle mightily with as days of partially completed tasks prove. It is cliche but true that the average man operates the household far more efficiently than the average woman, when he must. I’ve seen it play out countless times. She contradicts herself a little bit by saying that they have this awesome awesomeness that drives them to achieve

What I have found to be especially challenging is fighting our female tendencies to over-commit. As women, we are born achievers, nurturing and resourceful. When we engage with something, we do so with our whole heart, and that project or person receives all of us. We are always striving to do a good job, to do the best we can for a child, a spouse or a client. We are fully committed to our families and if we are working, fully committed to the passion of our jobs.

And yet they prioritize. How does that work?

Well, no matter how you feel about women trying to have it all, you cannot have an article about that without playing a special version of the victim card. This version of the victim card allows the woman to be both victim, and admirable for the trait that creates her victimhood. In her case she tells us women are just too generous and too long on achieving.

What I have found to be especially challenging is fighting our female tendencies to over-commit. As women, we are born achievers, nurturing and resourceful. When we engage with something, we do so with our whole heart, and that project or person receives all of us. We are always striving to do a good job, to do the best we can for a child, a spouse or a client. We are fully committed to our families and if we are working, fully committed to the passion of our jobs.  This is often where the dichotomy between job and family occurs—we want to do the best at both jobs.

The poor dears. They cannot help but, well, help…and they are so incredibly driven to excellence that giving anything less than 110% is anathema. That fact is evident in the rate at which they bail out of marriages for frivolous reasons. I know that sounds ass backwards, but believe me somewhere there is an article where a woman will explain that this tendency to divorce is a sign or her excellence and bent towards achieving….how she wants to give her all to those things that matter. See, there are more important things than that marriage, so she sacrifices, and gives of herself elsewhere. Victim, and empowered achiever…ain’t it great?

What advice does she end with? ME TIME! That’s right ladies, make sure to get that precious ME TIME, because if you don’t take care of you first you are useless to everyone who needs you.

Finally, take the time to restore yourself. While you are tempted to feel otherwise, it is a very unselfish act to allow yourself time to replenish

I am happy to deem things like this “making work out of work”. None of this should be complicated. What is complicated are the emotions driving all of this, which is why the Bible tells us to not follow feelings and to take thoughts captive. We all must find an objective truth from which our purpose is derived. With that, the choices fall out and are obvious.

Watching society go to hell in a hand basket as the family crumbles and standing amidst the rubble telling people that it will all be OK is par for the evangelical feminist course.

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2012/07/21/no-matter-where-stand-in-can-women-have-it-all-debate-kids-must-come-first/