I typically do not take time to answer critics because I feel like it is a waste of my time. Often once someone has their mind made up about someone or some situation it is very hard if not impossible to change it. In this post I am going to answer some of the criticism that I (we) have faced, and then I'm going to leave it there, and move on to bigger and better things with my life and this blog.
1. "You are just a bitter person out for vengeance and publicity."
~ I am not bitter. You can ask those who I am closest to and they could tell you that this is absolutely not true. I have chosen to cooperate with the police investigations for a number of reasons, but mostly because it was the right thing to do. If by my actions or my story being told I can prevent the abuse of one child or give courage to someone to come forward about their abuse and find freedom, then I believe that is what I need to do. Statistics show that abusers typically don't change, so the best place for them is in jail so they can't hurt others. I have not done this for the publicity. I did agree to a couple of interviews, but turned down far more than I accepted. I allowed my story to become public so that a greater awareness could be brought to the problem of abuse.
2. "You were happy in life before all of this, they should have left you alone."
~ In all honesty I was not happy, I was miserable. When we left fundamentalism I was in a place of extreme pain and intense searching. It is in this searching that I have found who my God really is. The true God of the Bible is a very different God than the one I grew up knowing. I have found incredible healing in the last two years and am incredibly thankful for all that I have learned along this journey.
3. "How could you hurt the families that these men have, I mean this was so long ago."
~ Here's the deal with this one. This is totally misplaced guilt. I will not take the blame for hurting anyone's family. Abusive men (people) are the ones that choose to hurt their families. These men are not stupid, they just lack self control and common decency. When an abuser chooses to hurt another person they are the one that ultimately hurts their family in the process even if it does take many years for justice to happen. Again, there are so many studies that have shown that typically abusers DO NOT CHANGE. Even if abuse happened years ago the perpetrator should pay for their crimes.
4. "You are hurting the name of Christ by your actions and by calling out abuse in the church."
~ Honestly my husband just did an incredible post about this one so I'm just going to link it here because I think he answered it far better than I could. Check out his post titled "You're Hurting the Name of God".
5. "You lump everyone together and hate all fundamentalists."
~ This is simply not true. There are still people that I love dearly that are fundamentalists. I do believe that there are many people who are within that movement who just do not see what is going on. I frequently pray for many of the people that I know within fundamentalism that God would do an amazing work in their lives. I don't have the time or the energy to hate people (not not even those who have hurt me deeply). When I find myself struggling in that way I pray for those people because it is only God who can open their eyes and break off the chains that hold them back.
I know there are other criticisms, but I don't want to take the time or the energy to deal with them. Those closest to me and probably most who have even taken the time to read this blog can see my heart. I love people and hate that people are being abused or that their abuse is covered in the name of Christ. It is wrong! I believe that God has called me to where I am to help give hope to hurting people and to show them that there is hope for a very full and happy life after abuse. I will continue to bring light into the dark places and love the hurting people no matter what people choose to say. I know my God is for me and that I am loved unconditionally, and that I am doing what is right and that is all that matters.