Were you watching the Duggar scandal unfold before your eyes and secretly fearing when the media would start accusing “homeschooling” for Josh Duggar’s incestual molestation? It didn’t take long before it came out that the Duggars use Bill Gothard/ATI materials in their homeschool lessons. I find it interesting that I haven’t seen ANY responses about this in the Twitter hashtag stream for #homeschool. More than interesting, I find it appalling. First of all, that no one in that stream has even spoken out about the abuse cover up and even worse they aren’t saying anything about the connection between the abuse and the homeschooling label.
I know “homeschool” is a rather large umbrella over many diverse families from Christian to Atheist, Pagan to Hindu, Gay to Heterosexual and so on. However, we’re still a community of home educators and the media is bound to lump us all in together.
Does that bother me? Yes and no.
1. It bothers me that the lifestyle of homeschooling gets this horrid reputation based on extremist fringe groups and their atrocious practices and teachings.
I’ve said before that it would be great to have more homeschool conferences that were inclusive to all beliefs and home educating methods. But the truth is there are more homeschool conferences catering to this hyper conservative and highly political community.
2. It wouldn’t bother me if the media portrayed all homeschoolers as one group…if they were honest about it.
When are they going to interview a homeschool parent who totally opposes this abuse?
Maybe they’re waiting to find out if there are any!
If they’re looking on Twitter to see what’s going on in the hashtag stream then they won’t find any. How disappointing.
I searched our homeschool blogosphere for any articles about this in hopes I would see compassionate moms speaking out for the victims. I even looked through the Winners list for the 2014 Homeschool Blog Awards and Group Blog nominations list to see if anyone there had said anything. I thought for sure someone over there would have spoken up. I used to write with some of these women.
Not a peep.
Maybe the Circle of Moms Top Homeschool Bloggers have said something.
Nope. It’s crickets on their blogs too.
It’s devastating enough as it is that this kind of abuse (and cover ups) exist in the world, let alone the homeschool community.
Maybe these mom bloggers have never sat with an abuse victim whose parents used the homeschool label as a shield.
Perhaps they didn’t read how Micah feels about seeing news stories like this.
Maybe they’ve never read the articles on HomeschoolersAnonymous.
I wonder if these homeschool blog moms dismiss these abuse stories as a small minority not worth giving attention to.
Should it matter how vast or minuscule abuse stories are to actually speak up about it?
Doesn’t it BOTHER these moms that homeschool graduates are speaking out about how their parents abused them in various ways and hid under the homeschool label?
Does it bother them the wrong way?
Is it so bothersome that they don’t want anyone to know abuse is happening in the homeschool community?
It should be bothering us that it’s happening and it should burn our hide so badly that we boldly speak out about it!
Have the Duggars become such a Christian Idol that Christians are afraid to say anything?
By the looks of Duggar supporters it seems as though that may be the case.
“How dare you say anything about the Duggars. God forgives!”
“Josh just made a mistake, God gives grace.”
“God forgets our mistakes, let it go.”
Really? Is this the best we can do? I sure hope not!
Stop using God’s name in vain.
Spend some time meditating on Romans 13:1-4.
The Duggars lost their moral compass, just admit it.
They made a GRAVE error in their parenting. Not just parenting in general, but as Christian parents.
May we NOT follow in their footsteps.
Abuse is happening in the homeschool community and we are in a position to speak up about it.
No Christian homeschool blogger should even think of writing about parenting until they address this!
Christian parenting does NOT involve handling abuse in-house.
Here are 5 suggestions for getting help when abuse emerges.
1. Call your family doctor/therapist immediately. Tell them what happened and that your next step is to call CPS.
2. Talk to CPS. Yes, you heard that correctly. CPS has voluntary programs designed for families who come forward on their own in need of assistance with abuse. They offer classes, therapy, family therapy, individual child therapy, family reunification, and a host of other supportive services for the child victims.
3. Do NOT allow the abusive child to be in the house with other children any more until a licensed therapist and your doctor says it’s safe to do so.
4. Find a trusting relative or close family friend (without children) who would be willing to house the child temporarily.
5. Protect the other children AT ALL COSTS.
Facing this kind of travesty is difficult for everyone in the family. It’s incredibly taxing on the parents emotions to separate their family. It’s incomprehensible for a parent to think one of their children would harm their siblings like Josh Duggar did.
As a Christian, it seems to be so much more difficult. Christians hold such a high standard and it’s morbidly shameful to admit to themselves, let alone anyone else, when abuse has happened in their families.
Allow me to offer some comfort to them.
In Romans 13:3 “For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval,”
While one has done bad in being abusive, seeking licensed help right away is doing a good thing. THAT is to be commendable.
I sit here and think…what if?
What IF Mr and Mrs Duggar had handled this in the manner I suggested above?
- As reality TV stars and famous Christian celebrities they would have had the opportunity to show the world how Christians can obey God’s commands and trust in His divine plan for our government.
- They would have protected the girls from further abuse.
- The girls would have developed a deep abiding trust in their parents.
- Josh (and the family) would have had licensed therapy.
- Josh would have been brought to justice properly. At the age of 14, his consequences would have been far less severe as they are right now.
- Fewer girls would have been violated.
If you want to help reduce (even better, STOP) abuse from happening in the homeschool community then speak up about it!
Being silent isn’t going to make it go away.
We don’t want abuse in the homeschool community, so offer some supportive articles for families who are suffering.
Do you know of any homeschool bloggers who HAVE spoken against this abuse? Please share the link in the comments.
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