Why in the minds of “Godly” people does the weight of keeping a man from sinning fall on women???

Many, many years ago Yannick and I were ministry leaders in a non-denominational cult, brilliantly disguised as a church, that went by the name; The International Churches of Christ.  We learned a great  many things from these people, the bible, and the leaders.  Some of it good, some of it not so good.  When we left, it was because a brother in Christ, who had been put over our finances, because why would you give a worldly person a job, and your money, when you could employ a brother in Christ?

We were twenty five, we wanted to do right by God, and we were dumb with money.  We’re both artists, enough said.  So we did as they suggested, fired our perfectly brilliant, lovely, kind, honest accountant, and hired a brother in Christ.  A brother who had no idea what he was doing when it came to filing taxes for clients who had to pay taxes in both the U.S and Canada…suffice it to say, he fucked up.  HUGE.  The mess was left in our laps, and we paid the price.

Then we left the church, well I left first, alone, because I was much more furious about it all than Yannick was.  Also by now he was so brainwashed with the fear that God only resided there, in that particular ministry, that he couldn’t bring himself to “leave God.”  I believed differently.  I believed that there was no way that any God would believe that how we were handled, how our money had been so poorly managed, with nobody having any integrity to take ownership of that, along with being hung out to dry, was not Godly in the slightest.  I had great faith that God had long left that building, if he had ever lived there at all.

But I digress, this post is NOT about how we lost everything, and ended up in debt to the IRS, while the “brother” had paid himself well over $20,000 to apparently “handle” our finances.  This post is about the weirdness that I experienced by the men in the congregation who obviously lived by the Billy Graham “rule” that Mike Pence also lives by.  In fact, many of the wives did as well.  I recall very vividly two wives, who were “over me in the Lord” pulling me into a meeting, to tell me that I had to be much more mindful of how I dressed, how I wore my hair, and how I talked with the husband’s of the congregation.  They had been told by other women in the church that I was causing many husbands “to struggle” with the sin of lust.

Come again?

Excuse me???

I’m responsible for your husband’s inability to not control his own thoughts about me???  Ahhh, WTAF are you talking about crazy church ladies.  No, I don’t think that’s how it works.  I mean it wasn’t like I was strutting into Wednesday night bible study in thigh high boots, daisy duke shorts, and a bikini top.  I was a young mom of two little girls, I wore sweats A LOT, wore my hair in a ponytail, and mostly never wore make up.  Regardless of how I actually dressed, what if I had dressed in the thigh high get up, I still don’t get how your man’s thoughts were my problem.  It was a huge eye opener for me, and for about one week I truly beat myself up because in my heart I believed that I was leading my “brothers” astray.  Plus I was young, only twenty-two, and my past experience with men, attempting to take whatever they wanted from me already had me thinking that it must be something I was doing.  That I was the problem.  Then it dawned on me.  When I drew that comparison I was able to come to the same conclusion that I had about the abuse.  The abuse happened to me because of the men refusing to control their own urges, not due to anything that I had done to provoke it.  Once I had that squarely in my mind, I was able to walk with confidence knowing that that shit was all on them, and they better get it straight in their own head to preserve their relationship with God.

Now with all this hoopla surrounding the Mike Pence, “won’t eat with a woman alone” bullshit that’s raging all over the internet it takes me right back to that moment in time, in my own life where I experienced first hand Godly men, who wanted to put the shame of their “ungodly” urges on the backs of women.  I wonder if one of those women who pulled me aside into the meeting was ever told by her husband how he kissed me square on the mouth while saying goodbye to me at the airport when Yannick, and our two girls were flying to move to New Zealand???  You see, the issue wasn’t me, I’d never given a single thought to this man, never mind thought about kissing him on the lips.  Judging by the way he came in so hot first excuse he had to do so, points to the fact that the attraction, the struggle was all on him.  But I bet you if she was told that he kissed me on the mouth, she would still find a way to blame me.

You see in my humble opinion this is a character issue; for men, and women alike.  If you know you have a strong moral character, if you know you respect, love, honor, and cherish your wife, and don’t sexualize females, then what’s the big deal of being in the company of women on alone, or where there is alcohol being served?  My husband has to roll around, and make out with beautiful women for a LIVING.  Why don’t you put that in your pipe and smoke it Mike Pence!

Strong moral character, is strong moral character, is strong moral character regardless of the situation a man is put in.  But, hey, this is just my two cents and it’s my blog, so I have the floor.

9 Comments

  1. I have never got man made God. We started out in the Golden Age with Goddess, all equal, every one was equal and had every thing we needed, no one went without. It is hard to find much on this. I just typed in first goddess and found that they said it is hard to find much about her as ” they” do not want us to know anything about this. I went on to also find that when man made god started, they and Egypt, went together and made war with Goddess and got rid of her. In the little bit that I did find, it also said the the archalogical sp? digs of where Goddess ruled, and lived, in the Golden age, there was no war tools of any kind found. So , all the people that follow man made god, just look at what he made of our world!

  2. I don’t know if you’ll actually ever read this now, but here it goes. I used to be a member of the International Churches of Christ. I had befriended Jay Anthony Franke through a big event the church had. I had no idea who he was until a “sister” had pointed him out to me and told me he was an actor. She was so into him and the show he was on, “California Dreams”. So I, being the brave guy I am and in no way star struck, approached Mr. Frank and explained I didn’t care who he was but someone did and wanted a date with him. So we set up a “Double Date”. Jay and I became pretty good friends because of that. I guess no one ever approached him like that before. It had been a couple of years since his TV show aired, but people still knew him and wanted a piece of him. I just didn’t really care.

    So what does this have to do with Yannick? Well, Mr. Franke was “struggling” with his faith and had stopped going to church, yet still living with “brothers”. Yannick called me and asked me to talk to him. Maybe help him with his faith if I could. Yannick couldn’t, I guess, because of his position in the church. Jay would merely avoid Yannick. I never really knew Yannick but we had a few conversations regarding Jay. I was so inspired by Yannick’s talks and it helped me alot in my own faith.

    So here’s the interesting part in all this. I had NO IDEA who Yannick was. He was just a brother who had the same experiences in show business as Jay did. I never knew what Yannick did in his acting career, nor did I care. All I know is the man is very wise and good hearted.

    Here’s the really BIG KICKER….. I’m a big fan of Rick Springfield. His music has inspired me and helped me through alot of tough times. He’s probably the only person I would ever be star struck over. And here I was TALKING to a guy who played in a TV series called “High Tide” next to Rick himself. Who would have KNOWN this?????? We had no internet back then. I probably could have met him back then and didn’t even know it. Such is my life, I guess. I just thought I would share this moment in time with you. Ask Yannick if he remembers me. It would be interesting to know.

    This all got brought up one evening. I was talking to my girlfriend about how I almost met Rick Springfield. I mentioned Yannick and how I talked with him not knowing who he was. It prompted me to look him up and see what he’s been doing with his life. And here I am, writing on Shantelle Bisson’s blog about an interesting set of events that I will remember for the rest of my life.

    Now, about this blog post. I believe that men fall because they are week when it comes to the opposite sex. Women are much stronger and more in control over those emotions. It’s how we are built. There is no way a woman can be blamed for a mans inability to control his desires. This, of course, excludes those women who purposely seduce men. Even then, the strength is in your heart to keep from falling. There are men with strong moral character, and a woman shouldn’t be blamed for the falling of those men who are week.

    I’m happy for you, Shantelle. I’m glad you and Yannick got out when you did. I’m also glad that Yannick hasn’t changed and doesn’t let fame hurt his character like it does with so many other artists and actors. He’s a good man and I enjoyed talking with him.

  3. Shantelle, this blog was especially hard hitting for me. I was crushed when I read of your experience with the International Churches of Christ.  There are so many people claiming to be Christians and “wearing the name only”.!! I pray that you and Yannick will keep the better memories of the good things you learned. It sounds like you learned so much from the Bible, and some of the “leaders” of the church. I am NOT familiar with the “International” organization, but am a member of the church of Christ and each congregation…and we’re a small number”…is independent though spiritually connected. My number one belief is that Jesus IS the son of God , and the church he died for is true. The bastardization of His church with His name, was predicted by Christ and that many would preach “in His name” falsely. It is comprised of “men” (as in all of us…sinners). I cannot express enough of what I KNOW is good and scriptural when people follow only God’s word, and I won’t push it here. You were young and trusting, but even after your horrible experience at the hands of so called Godly people, you still shine. None of us are without sin, no matter what religion we are. Whatever a “brother or sister in Christ” had caused you such grief, was not done with God’s blessing and they will answer for how they turned you away from the many good Christians that still need you.
    That said….All the comments I’ve read (and I dearly love reading your blogs and reactions….I think you are my “sister” and we really think alike!) it’s a given that it’s a man’s world. PEOPLE set guidelines and women, many times (throughout ALL of time) fall in line. You did nothing wrong to cause some ***&@#!! man to lust…and his woman to “bring you to task” for your appearance. She knew who she was living with and it was their problem to keep it in his pants. Hands off, buster!
    “Good Christian Men” have torn lives apart by their own hearts and actions. I know…I’ve lived with that pain since I was 12.
    And the blame in the garden of Eden could be taken as Eve being more adventurous and curious than Adam. I wasn’t there. They didn’t make it to the tree of life for more answers.
    And the Devil is so active today, everywhere in every religion throughout the world. He goes after the souls trying to do right…he already has the souls of the damned, so keep on fighting, girl.
    I am so proud of you and Yannick, and your beautiful family for the clean, loving and compassionate lives you lead. Can’t be easy and you’re always in the spotlight. You can’t hide your beauty within and without, so listen up women: the victims of rape (anytime NO is issued) are NOT asking for “it” and shall not ever feel the shame for being who we are. And not just females.
    Trying to cover up and hide who we are is not the answer. Yes, a certain amount of modesty is required, but that is a lot of attitude, too. What is “acceptable in 2017” depends on where and how we live. When my daughters and I showed up for church services, one time, on our way to a horse show…in jeans, boots and long-sleeved blouses required for the event…I was chastised by one man for showing up like that, and praised by another, who said we were there to worship God, and took the time to be there. You can never please everyone, and more likely than not, you’ll hear about it.
    It’s time that everybody, Men and Women both accept the responsibility for our own actions and quit blaming our weaknesses on another’s “tempting ways”.
    Jessica Rabbit (Roger’s wife…remember??) “I can’t help it…I was drawn this way”

  4. As far as organized religions, and what I think/feel about them, don’t even get me started! My mom got into the TV evangelists many years ago, giving them her money in exchange for little cheesey 5 and dime trinkets, exclusive “nutritional supplements”(exotic Australian sea salt), and a soap that makes you lose weight? WTAF? Luckily now she’s about to turn 94, and she doesn’t know to watch and doesn’t remember them.
    It’s always the same old story in patriarchal societies, that the WOMAN is always at fault, to blame, responsible, weak, not as intelligent as men, etc, etc, etc. That’s why it might be good to go back to “that ol’ time religion” of honoring the earth mother! All humanity would probably benefit from it.
    I’ll end my rant with a joke I’ve been telling for several years: If a man is out in the middle of a forest, and he says something, but a woman isn’t there to hear him, is he still wrong?

  5. Amen!! Judaism, Christianity, and Islam put all the blame for any kind of sexual misconduct on the woman. Women are to appear plain, cover their hair, not look directly at men, and remain silent. If a man is attracted to a woman who is another man’s wife, it has to be her fault for tempting him in some, mostly imaginary, way. This frees men from the responsibility of their own actions and therefore makes them the victims of a woman’s intrinsic sinfulness. After all, Eve tempted Adam. No one seems to realize that Adam gave in to the temptation and no one was holding a gun to his head. So women have been the greatest scapegoats in history, and that attitude has been supported and promulgated by religion.

    This should come as no surprise since all these religions are run by men. Look at prostitution. Only the women are arrested and prosecuted while their clients go scot free. Pro-Lifers put all the pressure on the mother-to-be and not one bit of scrutiny on the father’s who have all to often disavowed the child and washed their hands of any responsibility to the mother or child.

    The examples are too numerous to go into here, but suffice it to say that women are all too often blamed for the sins committed by men. Until that changes, women will continue to bear the brunt of judgmental “God fearing” people. And I think that it stinks.

    A

  6. Woo Hoo! You tell em Shantelle! I couldn’t agree with you more. I’d say that Mike Pence cannot trust HIMSELF around women, period. More than likely, as has happened in the past with so called Evangelicals and some Politicians who denounced gay culture, that he imbibes in extra marital trysts. I have found that the loudest critic, was found out to be on the down low, more with men than with women. There have been so many incidents in the last decade, that the first thing that comes to my mind when I hear anything like that is, “I wonder what he’s really up to”?
    You wait! It won’t be long before that cat is out of the bag!
    It also screams, inferiority complex. More and more women are in positions of power. More and more women, can see through a stupid statement like that!!! That’s a scared statement!! He’s afraid of women and only sees them as a threat, whether he admits it or not.
    Lets face it, if you’re a man in a position of power, 9 times out of 10, that power goes to your head, and I’m not talking about the one on your shoulders!! It happens all too often. I’ve seen it; I’ve experienced it.
    A politician with strong moral character……there aren’t many!!!

  7. I can only agree with your ideas 100%. I’m pretty sure God agrees too, if she has any sense.

  8. I’ve always liked my husband’s take on men that can’t keep their urges under control when they see women – poke their eyes out – that’ll solve their problem!

  9. Back when I was growing up in the 50s, girls were taught it was their duty to “control” the guy (since, evidently, guys could not control themselves). If he went too far, it was always the girl’s fault, not the guy’s, which gave the guy a free pass and put all the responsibility on the girl for whatever happened. Mike Pence is living proof that this 1950s attitude lives on. Here’s what else lives on: the same old, tired double-standard. If a woman has many boyfriends (or seems to be “too popular” with the guys), she is slut-shamed. But if a guy has many girlfriends, he’s praised and thought of as a “player.” Witness the reaction to Donald Trump’s assertion that because he is famous he can grab women by the ***. People, including some women, defended him– they said this was just “locker-room talk,” and you know, boys will be boys. Although there is more understanding today of sexual harassment and sexual assault, and more compassion for female victims, I still have heard girls getting blamed if they are raped– asked what they were wearing, or told they shouldn’t have been alone with that guy in the first place. It’s unfortunate that young women are still getting the message that whatever happens, it’s up to them to prevent it.

    By the way, I’m actually familiar with the Churches of Christ; they used to recruit college students, persuading them to drop out of school and spend their time performing hours of unpaid labor on behalf of the church. (When I was teaching at a Boston-area college in the late 1980s, we had a real problem with the Boston Church of Christ and their message that your duty as a Christian was to give up everything and work day and night, often not eating or getting enough sleep, because that’s what God wanted. They preyed upon the idealism of college kids who just wanted to change the world, and who found themselves instead caught up in the same cult-like environment you mention. I’m Jewish, but I’ve never found any evidence that what goes on in these cults is godly– whether they claim to be Christian, or any other religion. Rather, it’s often about an autocratic leader who claims to have all the answers, but who really wants power; he controls his followers and keeps their loyalty by cherry-picking scriptural verses, as well as using guilt, lack of sleep, and total isolation (no phone calls, no talking to parents, etc.) to keep the members in line. Glad you and Yannick got out. And while I’m not a member of the clergy, I can honestly say that you and Yannick are far more spiritual than a lot of the people who claim to be very religious (talking to you, Mike Pence).

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