[I'll just butt in and butt out again - thought you folks might be interested in this tidbit I just posted to the AsiaPac group]

... and how. Don't know if any of you remember a young Kiwi chick Joanna Baldwin. She was a genuine case of of severe religious child abuse who ran away from home after battling with anorexia and several half-hearted suicide attempts.

Somehow she found us. She posted a brief introduction here explaining her situation and began hanging out regularly on chat. She was extremely naive and horrifyingly ignorant of anything real world, to the point where you would think she was a troll - it was difficult to believe someone like her was real, which is the bit that boiled my blood. Damage like that goes way beyond anything I have encountered, and is not incidental - it is the result of absolute control and manipulation of her reality from the point of her birth. Anyway, she escaped, and for a while seemed like she was beginning to get her shit together. She enrolled and was accepted into a vet nursing course, something she said she really wanted to do.

But then she met a boy. An evangelical boy.

She started popping by less and less frequently, and when she did, you could tell she was getting frazzled and on the verge of losing it again. Said boy and his gang got into the habit of cornering her and hammering her with questions - they knew she had dipped a toe in godless waters, and it became their mission to reclaim her soul. There was more than just a hint of desperation about her when we chatted with her. Her anorexia was in full swing again, and she said she was down to 45kg and getting worried...

I last spoke to her on July 15. Helped her set up her blog and tried to give her some tips on how to deal with religious bullying. She said she had to make a big decision, and didn't know what to do. I didn't meddle, just told her to do what she thought was the best thing for her. The first entry of her blog is here from that same night. After that, she made her decision here, and set it in concrete here. You may want to scrub yourself with turpentine after that last item.

It's out of our hands now. Quite a few folk here did what little they could to help her out, listen patiently to her endless whiny bullshit and try and get her some kind of professional help and guidence. But there is only so much you can do over the ether. She's gone, time to stop worrying about stuff you can't change. Shit happens.

What next ? Possible suicide we'll never hear about. Maybe she'll try to be sane again and return. My bet, the rot will take hold, she'll lose all personality and will, and obediently breed a new generation of victims and the cycle will begin again. Religion is a beautiful thing.

In desperation of mind I texted a few people asking for prayer... soon after that, it was amazing... it was like suddenly I didn't need to think about it anymore and I KNOW God just removed my rational brain, and it became easy to accept Christ. -- Joanna Baldwin: saved, unsaved and saved again.


Tags: abuse, baldwin, jo, joanna, religious child abuse

Views: 58

Replies to This Discussion

Oh that's heartbreaking. But it might not be lifelong. I can pretty much recite her story because it mirrors mine, but I've largely moved past it. Yes, anorexia comes and goes in relation to stress. And yes, sometimes I still have irrational nightmares about demons and hell. But I'll never be "saved" again. It took me about 10 years between the first doubt and my last day as a theist, so don't count her out entirely. Just be kind when and if she's back, or to the next confused still-half-fundy person who stumbles in here, looking for some understanding.
Angie, you have a wonderful, understanding heart. Generosity is a good thing. I am not surprised that a person with her background 'slid back' into the familiar. Battered women go back to their abusers too. It doesn't mean we should be mean to them too!
I'm sad too if she does come back please let me know too. I will also try her FB page. Getting a mind to work for itself when it has never been allowed to is quite a process. The idea that she FELT peace etc is not surprising at all. It is what she is trained to do and psychologically it's an ingrained response. Much like the cravings of a smoker your brain and body go there for their form of normality and safety.
Thank you Felch for all your work and compassion.
Hi Christian visitor who lied-for-Jesus to get on this exclusively atheist site. How are you today?

Hint: I picked up on your non-atheism because you claim we atheists have no concept or right and wrong. We do - we think your religion is wrong.
Haha 12 minutes after I replied and he's already been deleted!
Damn. Fireworks, and I missed it. I really hate that Ning deletes messages from the departed. (I don't mean dead people. That's not possible. Damn this English anyhow.) For one thing, I didn't get to be outraged by the drive-by. For another thing, now it looks like Angie is accusing Ella E of being a Christian visitor who lied-for-Jesus, when clearly she was doing no such thing. There should at least be a placeholder "message deleted" post to show that something is gone. I continue to be baffled by some old threads on this site that are moth-eaten by departures.
Wow, that's one of the best screen caps ever. The fact that his name is FAITH only adds to the lulz.
By their illiteracy shall ye know them.
yeah, for a second I thought my arrow was pointing to her and I'd somehow replied to the wrong person (hence my "look the guy's deleted!" comment) I've seen people get in fights over misconstruing those tiny gray arrows.
Jason: Damn. Fireworks, and I missed it. I really hate that Ning deletes messages from the departed.

I do too. I would dearly love to have a graveyard for archiving nutjobs and moles. This is close to the top of my list for site improvements. Aside from our amusement, its a good place to point idiots who think we haven't heard it before and that we are "close minded".
She didn't leave on her own. I would like to know why she was banned.


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