Wednesday, March 27, 2013

An example of how the gay marriage issue is already affecting our lives.

The van pulled up to the candy factory, our very first homeschool field trip!! Calvin was dressed neatly in his pressed jeans and clean T-shirt, and Sam was secured in his stroller. I had just met this group of homeschooling ladies and I wanted to make a good first impression with all of them. It seemed that most of them knew each other and we were outsiders hoping to join. Just before we went in for our group tour of the factory, another young women hollered for us to wait! She was pushing a little girl in a umbrella stroller while wresting with the diaper bag and all that went with it. She flashed me a friendly smile and we soon started up a conversation.

Robin was a new first-time mom, although she had been friends to most of the ladies in this group for many years.  She had waited and waited to become a mom and was now thrilled with her pretty little girl, Chloe. And although it would still be a few years before Chloe would be school aged, Robin wanted to be part of the homeschool group and participate in the activities before she made up her mind about educational choices. Little Chloe was good throughout the entire tour.  She patted little Sam in his stroller and she thoroughly enjoyed the candy at the end of the trip!

Over the years, Robin and I became friends. Robin eventually decided to homeschool Chloe so we had that in common.  We also went to the same church so we had those activities and experiences in common too.  When Robin eventually had a son, our boys also became good friends. There was one special feast day that we started sharing together and it became an annual event.  One year we would go to Robin's house and the next to ours.  Our husbands even became involved. We made many happy memories and I can remember Chloe in my minds eye as she grew up with my kids.

Our Gang Thanksgiving


I remember one time in particular when Chloe was a little girl - not a toddler, but probably around 6 or 7, she had an accident while she was over at my house.  I took her to the bathroom and cleaned her up, and since I didn't have any little girls yet, I gave her some clean boy underpants to wear until her mom came to pick her up.  It was our little secret and she went back to playing without anyone even knowing there had been an incident.

The years went by.  Robin helped me through the loss of my baby.  We attended the funerals of the grandparents. The kids got bigger. Chloe started attending a local Catholic High School. And although we could no longer celebrate our special feast day together any more because of school conflicts, Chloe stayed in the homeschool youth group and I have memories of her participating in those activities as well as the beautiful formal dances we had every year.

Chloe got married last summer.  We weren't invited to the wedding, but I sent her a little something from her online registry just as a memento of past friendship.  Now a wife and a mother herself, I never see Chloe any more, but I was happy to keep up with her life and her experiences via Facebook.  Until yesterday. You see yesterday, many people, in support of "marriage equality" changed their Facebook pictures to an impersonal.
 
I didn't know what it was at first and had to Google it for an answer.  Chloe however put a question with her changing profile picture. She asked something along of the lines of, "Why should their love be different."  Knowing that Chloe had been homeschooled through 8th grade and then attended a Catholic High School, I answered with this clip from Catholic Answers, thinking that in her search for answers, she would find this helpful.

It wasn't.

You see, her changing of the profile picture and posing the question wasn't an invitation for discussion or debate.  In fact she basically told me some line about separation of church and state and not forcing beliefs on other people (which is a line I had heard back in November from an other alumnus of the same high school!) and then she wrote that she had her opinion and I had mine and that was that.

And it would have been, except that her other friends, including a 21-year-old anarchist and a 20-something self-described bisexual, felt the need to add their comments which included calling me and the two other mature, conservative Catholics joining the discussion names like, selfish, ignorant, bigot, douche-bag and dumb ass.  One gentleman said that because the times are changing and public opinion was swinging that we, we should just get with it - I promptly informed him that he had just employed the appeal to popularity logical fallacy.

And that was the last straw with Chloe- and I entered the wilderness of "unfriending" on Facebook.  My new exile appeared to be pretty severe too - no access to updates or pictures. Nothing. Her name would still pop up among the many other friendships we share, and it would be a reminder that despite watching her grow up and sharing joys and sorrows, I was no longer her friend. That's a little too painful for me so I had to block her name to protect my feelings.

That was the most severe incident yesterday.  A cousin included this on her facebook page as a way to marginalize opposing viewpoints.

Photo: A thing of beauty

Here is what I learned from this and other incidents:  If someone writes something along the lines of:

I will for the rest of my life not understand how the people i know and love can not understand the need for marriage equality. 


Don't get suckered in!.  Especially if they had a religious upbringing- they know the arguments for the other side, they just don't want to hear or read them.


Yes you are free to believe what you believe but we live in a country of freedoms and your religious or personal beliefs should not dictate what another can and should do with their lives. 

Interestingly there is never any consideration about how such a major cultural change is going to affect anyone else's life. And we know that there will be a change. 



I have never heard any of you speak against the millions of married straight couples who divorce and therefore live in opposition of the "sanctity of marriage". 

And most of them won't acknowledge the friends and family members who have been married for decades!


I post this not for a litany of responses about what God did or did not say in the bible, as I am sure you are aware there are many things written in the good book that we do not abide by....

Cop out


I say this because I hope that this baby that I carry and my baby at home will grow up in a world that celebrates love and not moral bigotry.
.Not so subtle ad hominem and a gentle threat that expressing your opinion is probably going to guarantee a similar exile on FB and in real life.


-->
Add to Technorati Favorites

4 comments:

  1. The situation on facebook you described is one of the very reasons I cancelled my account with facebook. Too many people who I thought who were Catholic or Christian did not agree with the fundamental foundations of Christianity. It became to painful for me as well. Thank you for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I am so sorry you had to go through this. It must have been so painful. Are you still friends with the girl's mother?

    I can remember being teased a little when I was in college for being against premarital sex, but I was never called names like "hateful" or "bigot". I never lost a friend over it. What is it about gay sex that you are not allowed to disagree with it? Why is it so special?

    Which leads me into my next real-life example of the negative effect same-sex marriage is having on our society. It has killed intellectual freedom in this country. In most academic circles you are not allowed to say anything negative about gay sex. Not. Allowed. You are not allowed to ask questions which may possibly challenge the validity of of these relationships. There's one official line now and you may not cross it.

    Anyway, I pray for you to find solace in your loss. I also subcribed to your blog. Although sometimes it feels like the world is going crazy around us, you are not alone and you are not as much in the minority as you probably are led to believe.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I, seriously, do not know one person between 18 and 30 in real life, who is Catholic (practicing or not practicing), who does not believe this is a civil rights issue. We never watched too much TV while the kids were young- but the number of shows now in which the gay couple are the "right ones" when raising children and the heterosexual couples are dysfunctional. This generation has been brain washed.
    I walk quietly with information through my children's friends.it is difficult to navigate without pushing away. Otherwise I do a great deal of praying. Still, I have been blocked occasionally....

    ReplyDelete
  4. This is a sad story. I, too, am encountering lots of what you have encountered. So far there has been no unfriending. I have actually made an effort to explain why I oppose same sex "marriage." But I could tell that no one took it seriously. Pray seems like the only answer.

    ReplyDelete


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...