Washington Post article about cutting off all contact with toxic family members....what is the morality of this?


Gender wasn’t even mentioned there; the neutral word “spouse” was used, no doubt deliberately.
Unlike your response.


As I am sure you are aware, it is now considered child abuse to force a child to watch someone else being abused, but especially if it is a parent or sibling being abused. There is no, “my husband/wife/parent/in-law abused me in front of the kids, but didn’t abuse the kids.”

Many times, people don’t cut off contact with abusive relatives until the day comes when they are forced to do it in order to protect their own children from harm. That makes that difficult decision much harder to avoid.


Sorry @angel12 but “your spouse came home and beat you” carries a heavy connotation “husband beats wife” not the other way around and if by syntax the grammatical category of gender is neutral - the semantics surely are not.


Darklight has already explained that it was her mother abusing her father.

The word spouse can mean husband or wife.

It seems like it is you who is reading something that isn’t there.


Yes. In my case I don’t remember seeing a whole lot as a kid, other than “not-yelling”. The more overt abuse I am aware of has been within the last few years. Not that that makes it pleasant.

That was actually part of what cemented my own decision. It’s much more likely someone you know abuses others is being abusive towards you. As opposed to one person being unfairly treated for no reason by multiple people.


This is regrettably true, one simple example would be the Philippines where the legal system attempts to not grant divorce if the woman is the one filling for it. And that is common in many third world countries.

The opposite is also true. Today, for anything and nothing, divorce is prompted - peer pressure can be a deciding factor tipping the scales.

Can we blame all of this “culturally” on the church? No. I don’t believe we can. This much is heavily correlated to how a specific society conceives the institution of marriage. Did indissoluble monogamous marriage begin with the Catholic Church? Yes. Thus church doctrine did indeed shape society, but societie’s cultural representation isn’t church doctrine although there can be some overlap in some extents. Again, divorce wasn’t legal in most countries in the first half of the 20th century, but so too wasn’t democracy or human rights. So “blaming the church” is significantly incorrect. As for “blaming society”, well society has evolved at fast pace, and not everything is always for the better.


Well thank you very much for that lovely correction @Sarcelle :slight_smile: I appreciate it.


I hope you read the excerpt from pope Francis on 26 of January of this year. Since the next world youth day will be in Portugal why not include a painting by a Portuguese artist:


That is unfortunate, because it only makes it more difficult for male victims to seek help.

Women are typically smaller than their spouses or partners, but they are actually the aggressors in far more cases of domestic violence than people believe. Sometimes, they use the fact that they are more likely to be believed and that their husbands are more likely to lose custody of the children to intimidate their husbands (or partners) and keep them from taking action to stop the abuse or make the offender face the consequences for their attacks.

It seems reasonable to think that women are usually the victims when we don’t know that. Once we know, we should not rashly rush to judgment about what is going on in a domestic abuse situation. Either spouse or both can be the aggressor.

To the topic of this thread, I know people who have cut off contact with their parents because they will no longer tolerate watching one of their parents abuse the other, nor will they expose their children to it.


It should be added that a man is not diminished in any way (as a man) for suffering violence from his wife.


Abusers are notorious both for denying that abuse took place, for shifting blame onto the victim for abusive incidents and for implying to the victim that the victim deserves to be ill-treated. This is true of both physical abuse and other types (such as verbal, financial and emotional abuse).


So I was amazed at how relevant last Sunday’s readings (Feb. 3rd) were relevant to this thread. The priest at my parish did a wonderful job with the scripture too.

They were 1 Cor 13:4-13…part of which says

“When I was a child, I used to talk as a child,
think as a child, reason as a child;
when I became a man, I put aside childish things.”

and the gospel was Lk 4:21-30 part of which says

"They also asked, “Isn’t this the son of Joseph?”
He said to them, “Surely you will quote me this proverb,
‘Physician, cure yourself,’ and say,
‘Do here in your native place
the things that we heard were done in Capernaum.’”
And he said, “Amen, I say to you,
no prophet is accepted in his own native place.”

and this section ended with…

“But Jesus passed through the midst of them and went away.”

The point the priest’s homily made was that Jesus was in his home town among friends and likely extended family. He wasn’t accepted, and he “went away” from them. He tied this into Corinthians, and said you basically need to make different decisions as an adult than as a child. You need to think of family differently as an adult than as a child, and sometimes that means “going away” from those you knew and who knew you as a child. He said that none of these decisions are easy, but Jesus and the Bible (through Corinthians) gave a model to try to deal with these decisions. Basically, you try your best, but sometimes you need to make tough “adult” decisions. It was part of maturing…

Just thought I’d share…


The office of prohethood to which the second passage refers can hardly be surmised because the notion of prophet itself is of insurmountable complexity.

1Cor13 is Saint Paul’s Song of Love and is the mainstay definition of charity, in the mystical sense, what love is and what love is not.

The two put together are, mystical, prophetic, and thus an object of meditation. Pope Francis’s words serve as a guide since he is the vicar of Christ in our times.

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