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Emily Liz

You might rethink your opinion of Gentle Christian Mothers if you take a look at their site and see what brats many of their children are. Even the kids' fathers can't stand them in some cases.

Norml Citizen

How do you know their children are brats. What infor can you offer to back up this ridculous statement

Marmee

I was reading your Gentle Christian Mothers comment. As a frequent poster on that site, I can tell you that we were coming by to read your thought provoking blog and enjoyed it very much. As a whole, I have found the GCM's to be well-read and find it refreshing to converse with christians who actually think and study instead of blindly following dogma. I am sorry that the other poster thinks the children there are brats. All I can offer is that she hasn't met mine - two of the kindest and most compassionate children you will ever meet. I consider myself a christian feminist and I love your blog. I also consider myself a gentle person and I am unapologetic about never hitting my children or promoting violence in my house. And, just for the record, my childrens father loves them and loves being around them - in fact, he homeschools them while I work.

Lois

If you define a brat as someone who expresses their feelings in a way that might make others uncomfortable then I would say we are all "brats" at times. If you define someone NOT being a brat as someone who APPEARS to be good or nice all the time then I would have to question if that person were actually being truthful to what they feel or perhaps they are just trained to fear expressing anything but happyness and smiles?

Amy

GCMs get it. Servant leadership. Active compassion. And not judging by mere appearances. Spin off: no brats here, LOL. And if there were? That's OK too. Not a single one of us goes to heaven by being 'well behaved'. Jesus is concerned with the heart, NOT our ability to conform to rules and culture. That's the gospel, Emily Liz. It's a gospel of Grace.

Nancy

I am a Christain and have 2 children, one 18 and one 12. My husband and I never spanked our kids, and they are definitly not brats... we both came from abusive homes and decided not to spank the kids... because, in our experiance most parents spank out of anger and not discipline... which is not demonstrating God's love... that is not too say that I have never been angry with my kids... because I have, but I just never wanted to cross that line with them... Kids need discipline and not fear tactics because they grow up and you can not spank them when they are 18 ... I also did not like the idea of having my kids in the "family bed" because that was time for my husband and I ... not the kids, they are fine sleeping in their own bed...

Nancy

Emily

I find it a bit ironic that the Gentle Christian Mothers promote so-called "natural" living yet it seems a good portion of these women are on some sort of brain meds (Paxil, Prozac, etcetera).

Reformed GCM

I am a former member of GCM and I have to agree with the fact that many (but not all) of the children raised by the mothers there are brats. Many of them practice extremely permissive parenting and call it Gentle Disicpline when in fact they are not providing any boundaries, structure, or discipline in their parenting. This was not supposed to be the intended purpose of GCM, and is not parenting practices of Jeri, Crystal, or Joanne. What each of them practices is true Gentle Discipline, a true and consistent teaching of their children and molding and guiding their path. Unfortunately many of the mothers that have joined GCM over the years are too afraid of their children to discipline them. Most of them were abused themselves, or just never had an example of what it means to be a parent. There has to be a balance in our approach to disciplining our children. Yes, our children should be able to express their feelings. However they must also learn how to do this in an appropriate and respectful manner. There are absolutes of right and wrong in the world and each of us must learn to function in society. The family is supposed to be the first society our children experience. If our children do not learn to deal with conflict, disappointment, and the consequences to not following the rules with their parents they will have a very difficult time adapting later in life. Many of them never will. That is the travesty of parents who call themselves "attached" and who claim they practice "Gentle Discipline" when they don't use any kind of discipline with their children, or with themselves in their parenting. Gentle Discipline is about so much more than whether or not you spank your child. That's just a drop in the pond.

Emily Liz

Glory alleluia! I'm delighted that somebody has seen the light about the Gentle Christian Mothers. On the one hand, I will add one caveat: some of the children of the contributors may very well have neurological problems that affect their behaviour and maybe a "punitive" approach wouldn't work for them. On the other hand, it seems that these kids aren't getting any discipline at all, which isn't good either.

One of the saddest cases is that of a woman who calls herself Chris3jam. Her children apparently are unwelcome in venues like the library because of their poor behaviour. Now she does say her children have ADD, but once when she admitted on the board that she could barely stand them and her husband was always complaining about the way they behaved. Immediately several of the other board members assured her that her children were "fine." Only one - Mamame I believe her name was, who admits she sometimes uses corporal punishment on her children - said that it was not good for the children or the entire family if they were allowed to act like brats. The others immediately berated Mamame. So it seems like the majority of GCM members are "enablers," like a wife who always makes excuses for her alcoholic husband as to why he can't stop drinking.

I agree Joanne is one of the saner members of the board who does set limits for her children (I'm not sure about Crystal or Jeri; I don't seem to see many posts by them). And I agree that no, most of the GCM members don't practise "gentle discipline;" they practise no discipline at all. And in the end, it's the children who are going to suffer as a result.

Emily

Nancy, Lois and Norml Citizen, go back to school and learn how to spell.

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