Saturday, August 19, 2006

abusive relationships

I've taught high school girls Sunday school for many years, like at least 14. This past Sunday we had the best discussion I've ever experienced.

One of the girls suggested we study the book, Bad Girls of the Bible by Liz Curtis Higgs. I knew it was going to be good as I cried reading the introduction of the book. Sunday morning, we didn't cover the points in my neatly planned lesson.

See, the author of the book does something so beautiful. She opens with a dramatic story of a girl dating a pretty scary guy. The kind of opening when you're cheering for her--trying to help her escape from danger. Then she goes on to share that this girl trapped in an abusive relationship is herself--Liz Curtis Higgs.

You know what? As soon as I told the class the author was the girl, they opened up and talked. Transparent writing brings an amazing reaction from readers. I witnessed instant trust and respect.

We talked about this sort of stuff:

What might cause people to stay in abusive relationships.
How drugs and alcohol might lower your inhibitions.
How abusive relationships don't usually start out in the extreme, but gradually get bad.
Other forms of abuse, like talking down to someone.
How you feel about yourself if you're dating an abuser.

Thank you, Liz. Your writing is making a difference.

Thoughts anybody? Experiences along these lines? Warnings from readers who've been there?

My love♥


samantha said...

I can't relate as far as my boyfriend (it's been 9 months, he respects my sexual boundaries and not wanting to say I love you). But my dad and I haven't had the best relationship because of his habits- alcoholism and smoking.

Julie Garmon said...

Yeah for you, Samantha! Strong boundaries with your boyfriend, and for nine months too! Way to go. Sounds like you're one smart girl.