Debi Pearl's Created to be His Help Meet book


#1

Has anyone read this book? Any Catholic perspectives on her ideas and biblical interpretations? While I agree with her basic premise of wifely submission, I wonder about her practical applications?

Thanks for any input!


#2

i don’t know about that book but i have issues with their books on parenting so i won’t read any other books by them


#3

I haven’t read that particular book yet, but I have a friend who loves it. I have, however, read the Pearl’s book To Train up a Child. And while some of the stuff they say sounds practical, there is a lot of other stuff that scares me. Of course, that same friend of mine uses everything he says and loves it as well. (and her kids are awesome, they are the best behaved kids I’ve ever met.)

Sorry I couldn’t be of any real help… I think the Pearls have some interesting ideas, I just don’t know how practical they are.

Personally, I like Elizabeth George’s* A Woman After God’s Own Heart (*I read it when I was still I devout Baptist, but I don’t recall it saying anything that would go against Catholic teaching.)

RyanL’s Wife


#4

[quote=Jennifer J]Has anyone read this book? Any Catholic perspectives on her ideas and biblical interpretations? While I agree with her basic premise of wifely submission, I wonder about her practical applications?

Thanks for any input!
[/quote]

I advise against pretty much all their materials.


Even if you are for the basic premise of wifely submission, her concepts and biblical standings are based entirely on her own interpretation of the bible and often not supported in any other way.


These are people who don’t even believe in legal marriages - they just go out back, have dad say a few words and say they’re now married.


#5

oh yeah, i forgot i’d heard that before


#6

From what I know of their parenting books, I would stay FAR away from anything written by the Pearls.


#7

I read this thread the other day and recently spoke to my husband about it. We are Protestants but I am interested in converting to Catholicism, which he doesn’t agree with in the least. He is up in Georgia visiting his parents over the Thanksgiving holidays and told me he was going to bring this book home for me to read. He has always thought that I wasn’t submissive enough and that I need to read something like this. This also fits in very nicely with his idea that I should have nothing to do with Catholic ideas. Also, my dad is a retired Baptist (fundamentalist and almost Landmark in his ideas) so of course my ideas would not receive any kind of warm reception. Any ideas on how I react to this? I’m afraid I wasn’t really thrilled with the idea of reading this book!


#8

As much as I cannot stand the Pearls and think their ideas are downright scary from the things I have read, I would think that out of respect for your husband, you should read the book, try to glean something good from it, and disregard any craziness that might be in there. LOL

I know nothing about your marriage, but I find these “submission” ideas only come up when one person is overboard one way or the other (either the wife is a far-out feminist, or the husband is bent on being extremely dominant over his wife). I have found through my own 6 year marriage, my parents’ 38 year marriage, and my grandparent-in-laws’ 62 year marriage that it’s not so much about submission as it is about mutual respect and trying to always be kind to the other and put their needs first, if both people do those things and have God at the center of their marriage, I just don’t think submission issues arise. We both work to submit to God’s will, and we have worked out fine.

Maybe a Catholic book on marriage would be of more help, I don’t know of any, but I am sure someone here can recommend.

God Bless! (oh, and maybe pray before reading the Pearl’s book, that you won’t be taken in by any of their far-out ideas-lol)


#9

I had posted this question hoping someone would do my homework for me! LOL Looks like I’ll have to sit down and look more closely at her biblical interpretations and actually try to read the book (I quit after 2 chapters in total disgust!). A friend of mine asked me to read it and let her know what I thought, so I suppose I’ll really read it. I’m not looking forward to it though. I’ll let you know what I glean from this book, but I’m guessing it won’t be much.

I really enjoyed Dr. Laura Schlesinger’s (sp?) book The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands.
Dr. Popcak’s For Better Forever: A Catholic Guide to Lifelong Marriage is supposed to be a good book

Those are the only books I can come up with right now. I know there are more.


#10

Dear Jess:

Thank you for your kind and thoughtful reply. I had been searching these forums earlier this week and had seen this thread about this book by Debi Pearl. My husband’s family and particularly his sister are big fans of the Pearls and especially their rules on disciplining kids. I had thought that they were pretty good but I knew that they were rather anti-Catholic and this was alarming to me because of my interest in Catholicism (about 4 years now!). My husband has mentioned to me before that he was worried that I was not being submissive enough and we have always had a problem about what church to attend. My interest in the Catholic Church has caused a good deal of problems for him and he has stated in no uncertain terms that I am not to think of becoming a Catholic. After spending the day yesterday with my family and hearing them bash Catholics at least once or twice, I feel rather lonely and vulnerable right now and reading a book like this sounds awful. However, you are right, I need to at least read it and find out what I do agree with. I’m sure she is not totally off base.


#11

[quote=pamflute]My husband’s family and particularly his sister are big fans of the Pearls and especially their rules on disciplining kids. I had thought that they were pretty good but I knew that they were rather anti-Catholic and this was alarming to me because of my interest in Catholicism (about 4 years now!).


Actually, they are anti-any church. They home church. Frankly, I find their child disciplining methods either abusive or very close to it.

My husband has mentioned to me before that he was worried that I was not being submissive enough and we have always had a problem about what church to attend. My interest in the Catholic Church has caused a good deal of problems for him and he has stated in no uncertain terms that I am not to think of becoming a Catholic.

**Okay there’s 2 issues there. **


Your dh doesn’t get to tell you what faith you’re allowed. That’s not submission, that’s interferring with your relationship with God. My own dh is not Catholic, but it would never occur to him that he can dictate such to me and I feel the same for him. One cannot force such a movement of faith in another soul.


Your dh should be more specific about how you as a wife could be more submissive. For some men, this means you answer to him for absolutely everything and isn’t so much about you being submissive as it is him being a control freak. For other men, being submissive means being able to agree/talk on major daily issues such as kids and money. For yet other men, being submissive simply means they need to know that you are trying to please them as much as they are you.


Exactly how does he think you are not being submissive?
Exactly how do you feel about it?
[/quote]


#12

[quote=pamflute]I read this thread the other day and recently spoke to my husband about it. We are Protestants but I am interested in converting to Catholicism, which he doesn’t agree with in the least. He is up in Georgia visiting his parents over the Thanksgiving holidays and told me he was going to bring this book home for me to read. He has always thought that I wasn’t submissive enough and that I need to read something like this. This also fits in very nicely with his idea that I should have nothing to do with Catholic ideas. Also, my dad is a retired Baptist (fundamentalist and almost Landmark in his ideas) so of course my ideas would not receive any kind of warm reception. Any ideas on how I react to this? I’m afraid I wasn’t really thrilled with the idea of reading this book!
[/quote]

Give him a copy of Theology of the Body for Beginners maybe? That’s a book about real mutual submission in the Lord.


#13

Thank you for your answers to my questions. I guess it’s time for me to talk with my husband about this submission thing again. In the past he would remark to me that I’m not obedient enough and I guess I was afraid if I said anything he would say that just proves it. Robs Wife remarked that he cannot hinder my relationship with God, but I guess that is not what I was taught. The husband is the spiritual head and he can make the decisions or give the okay on what church to go to - that is how it was taught to me. However, for the past several years he has not attended church on a regular basis and seems to have a cold attitude towards spiritual things. I get the feeling he thinks this is my fault since I didn’t want to go to a Baptist church, but I told him before we got married that I didn’t want to go to a Baptist church and at the time I was going to a Presbyterian church and had been for several years. I will let you all know my general impressions of the book when I get it!


#14

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.