Friday, October 11, 2013

Bible-Thumping Husband Needs To Learn Not To Judge

Dear Tazi:

I am a devout Catholic; divorce is not a word that is in my vocabulary and my wife knew this when we married yet she has filed for one, citing “irreconcilable differences”. I have considered contesting the divorce, but my attorney says that all that will do is draw out the process and make it more expensive; in the end, I will lose. I talked to several other divorce attorneys and they all told me the same thing – that I cannot force my wife to remain married to me; the most I can do is try to prove to the judge why I deserve custody of the children and more than half of the marital assets, thus making a divorce financially and emotionally painful for her in the hope that she will reconsider and come back and try to work on our marriage.

The issue started when our children became teenagers. Our daughters are now 14 and 16, with the elder one driving. My wife thought this would be the perfect time for her to get a job to bring in some extra income. I took this as a slap in the face! As the husband, it is my responsibility to take care of my family and “Sarah’s” desire to work outside the home expresses doubt in my ability to properly care for her and our daughters. Teenage girls need a lot of looking after, and an empty house during after school hours is the perfect playground for the Devil’s work! It was while discussing this with Sarah that I discovered a few horrifying truths, including:

Our elder daughter is taking birth control pills! Sarah says that it is because the girl has “painful periods” and the pills help to regulate her cycle and control her endometriosis. I believe this is just an excuse and that surely there are other methods other than this mortally sinful manner to deal with the problem.

Our younger daughter has been reading the Harry Potter books at school and the library, in spite of my insistence that my children not be exposed to this heathenish filth!

My wife has been volunteering at a shelter for people with AIDS. Before we had children, she had worked as a social worker and she said that she missed helping people. She could easily help people through the Church and not expose herself to these sinful people who lie, cheat, and steal in order to fulfill their dirty habits that led to their punishment of disease.

Sarah claims that she has kept this and a lot more secret from me because she knew I would refuse to allow them (she and my daughters) to live their lives, and she is darn right that I would, since this is the way they choose to live! The fact that my wife has been keeping secrets from me has me so enraged I can’t even think straight! Sarah claims that our marriage has been going downhill for years and that I have ignored the problems, but how can I have ignored them if she was keeping them secret?

I am not asking for advice, Tazi; I just needed to get all of this off my chest in a way that people can see that I am not the bad guy here! Thanks for listening.

Signed,
The Righteous One

Dear The Righteous One:

I can see that you are full of anger – also known as wrath; a cardinal vice, if I remember my teachings correctly. You need to learn to let go of it and let peace enter your heart.

You do not ask for advice, but I would like to correct you on one issue you raised: prescription birth control can be a life-saver for those with severe endometriosis, which can be painful enough to stop a woman in her tracks and send her to the emergency room, screaming in pain. Imagine this happening to your sixteen year old daughter…now imagine that she is driving her car to school when the pain strikes. At 16, she is still an inexperienced driver and may not be able to keep control of her car under such circumstances, which could result in a bad accident. Furthermore endometriosis, when left untreated, can lead to fertility problems and repeated miscarriages. Do you believe that this is God’s will for your daughter, when there are simple, safe, and effective medical treatments available?

Pope Francis has recently asked the followers of the Catholic Church to open their hearts to love and to see the person behind the sin; your wife is doing this in her work with those afflicted with AIDS, yet you continue to stand back and judge. Perhaps this is why your wife felt the need to keep secrets from you. As it says in the Bible, you must “first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” (Mt 7:5 NIV). Call my sin pride, but it’s my column, so I get final say, and this is it.

--Tazi

Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with Bachelors degrees in Communications and in Gender and Women's Studies. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

6 comments:

  1. Maybe you didn't consider it worthy of mention because personal preference is one's own thing, but I'd also like to put in a vote for Harry Potter. The Harry Potter books are fabulous, and the Christian themes and truths within them far outweigh the fact that the book uses witchcraft as a way of telling the story. (And in any event, the "magic" in Harry Potter is not demonic in the sense that what you know as magic in real life might be construed as demonic. It is a fantastical plot device, like superpowers in a superhero comic.) The Harry Potter series deals extensively with souls -- about keeping them whole and the evil required to split them in two. It starts with the premise that love can save you from death and ends with a proclamation that a sacrifice in the name of love can bring you back from it. Does that sound Christian to you? It does to me. The imagery, symbolism, and thematic portrayal of Harry Potter mimics that of the Gospel, just like many other 'hero' stories. In the last book of the series in particular, the religious symbolism hits a peak. In Chapter 16 of "Deathly Hallows," titled "Godric's Hollow," Harry visits a graveyard. On his parents' tombstone he reads the quote "The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death," while on another tombstone (that of Dumbledore's mother and sister) he reads, "Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also." The second is a direct quote of Jesus from Matthew 6:19, the first from 1 Corinthians 15:26. As Hermione tells Harry shortly after he sees the graves, his parents' message means "living beyond death. Living after death." That's one of the central foundations of theology.

    And in any event, take away the religious construct inherent in Potter, and what do you have? A story that teaches kids the following lessons: Some things are worth dying for. Believing in yourself is a hundred times more powerful than luck. An education is a girl's best asset, even if it doesn't make you many friends. Never, ever, ever judge someone. Anything can be cute with the right perspective. Bold is beautiful. A mother's love is the strongest force on earth. Fear is the only thing one should be afraid of. Education with a political agenda is a terrible, terrible thing. The ones we love never truly leave us. Good people are not always good. Bad people are not always bad. Courage is standing up for what's right, even when you're scared out of your mind. (cont'd)

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    1. (cont'd) Weird is wonderful. Freedom is a gift. No amount of money, pomp, or circumstance will buy you true friends. Sometimes all you need is a good laugh. A world without imagination is a dull and dreary place. A good sense of curiosity and a bit of obsession can be healthy. True love is not based on appearance. A happy family is not measured in gold. Hatred and prejudice rot your mind and can turn even the most beautiful person into a monster. If you want to get to know a man, look at how he treats his inferiors, not his equals. Rebound relationships almost never work. Love yourself, no matter what you look like. In the end, no career is worth sacrificing your family. You cannot change the past, only the future. Physical relationships only last for so long. Rats do not make good friends (it makes sense in context; trust me on this). To the well-prepared mind, death is but the next great adventure. A good cause is worth fighting for at any age. The love we have for our pets is very real. A life without love is barely living. And, last but not least, the stories we love will always be with us.

      Sounds like maybe you should be reading these books before you judge them as well.

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    2. Like to be clear I was addressing the guy who wrote in at the end there, not Tazi.

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    3. It has been so very long since I have read Harry Potter! THANK YOU for pointing out what I should have mentioned. A paw slap to me for forgetting and snuggles to you for sharing your wisdom! My readers rock!

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