Earlier today, my friend Maureen wrote a post about Kristen and Douglas Barbour who adopted two unrelated Ethiopian children via Bethany Christian Services to add to their large family. They recently pled “no contest,” to the charge of assault and endangerment of their children. [Please read that piece!]
This awful case is remarkably similar to the Hana Williams case in which the parents were sentenced last year. Some of the more notable similarities are the heavy reliance upon isolation, emotional control, authoritarian discipline and other methods ascribed to from books such as To Train Up A Child (I believe the Duggar family also uses this method). In both cases, the parents’ main motivation to adopt Ethiopian children was to support and uphold their religious beliefs that by adopting they were doing a charitable act.
It sure is hard to understand the role Christianity may have played while learning of a baby’s broken femur, malnourishment, or blindness due to a blow to the head. A quote from the article on The Pittsburgh Post Gazette:
“The doctor advised the defendants to be more flexible and change their routing and accommodate [the boy],” she continued. But “Both defendants balked at this advice. ‘That’s not the way we do it. That’s not the rules in our house.'”
Is there a tie between far right fundamentalist christianity and excessive, harmful parenting of adopted children?
** Please know that I know not all Christian parents ascribe to these parenting styles **