Today Marks My 17th Blogiversary!

Who knows how to spell this — blogiversary, or blogaversary? Regardless, I’m blogging this!

Yes, I started my blog on April Fool’s Day, in 2003. So now I’ve been blogging for 17 years.

Futuristguy has been my main blog since 2007. But I’ve posted numerous other blogs — some that I still update, some that are archived, some (all of my Inknoise sites) that got digitally decimated by black hat hackers. If you’re interested in seeing what’s what, here are the lists and descriptions of my content blogs and media/fansite blogs.

I’ve always liked multiple forms of media, from games to comics and music and movies and more, so those have been important ways for me to collect, engage with, and learn from things other than books. So expect to see another media-related site or two to come, and more filling in of gaps when time and energy let me get photos or scans and write descriptions.

Anyway, early this morning, to celebrate the day, I reread my previous posts about blogiversary milestones. Here is the list of them in order, along with some quotes that struck me as intriguing, and my commentary on what I’m rereading about my blogging history.

Thanks for reading my blog(s), and I hope you continue to find items of interest as time goes on! Continue reading

Warrior-Wear Series #1 — I’m Blogging This: Hot Tamales Peeps

MONDAY, MARCH 30. So to keep myself occupied yesterday and today, I did clothes sorting and laundry. Four. Loads. Sorted stuff in an entire dresser for what to keep, recycle, discard.

Look what I found–this most excellent shirt! And see what muh peeps sent me from Texas via USPS today! (I hear these are a Kroeger’s exclusive — so I’m stoked!)

More Warrior-Wear Message Shirts another time. Meanwhile, hunker down, carry on, stay safe all y’all.

TUESDAY, MARCH 31. And for all those Inquiring Minds who were curious and wanted to know … this was a two-pack of packages of Hot Tamales Peeps, with two boxes of Peeps in each package, a row of five Peeps in each box.

And what were they like: Sweet? Spicy? Spicy hot? Fire-alarm-get-the-fire-extinguisher hot?

Just a bit of “zip.” Kind of like a mild to medium pepper jelly. Sweet, tangy, and an oh-so-nice little bit of hot tamale!

Of course, sometimes spicy stuff builds up as one continues indulging. Although I might try that under other circumstances, I’d rather stretch these out and enjoy them for longer!

Hmm … stretch them out. That could work. Literally. But I’ll stick with metapeephorically.

NARCISSISM NOTES #13–Trajectories of Transformation, Chapter 9: “Transformation for Narcissists (Is Possible).”

Narcissism Notes share my interactions with material Chuck DeGroat presents in When Narcissism Comes To Church: Healing Your Community from Emotional and Spiritual Abuse.

Can abusive people change? If so, how–and how much? Chapter 9 deals with hard theological and therapeutic questions like these. My notes on this final chapter lay out Chuck’s case for possibilities of change as stratified according to the spectrum of narcissism (detailed in Chapter 2), indicators of openness to change, and who is likely or not to pursue transformation.

Continue reading

NARCISSISM NOTES #12–Trajectories of Transformation, Ch. 8: “Healing Ourselves, Healing the Church.”

Introduction

Narcissism Notes share my interactions with material Chuck DeGroat presents in When Narcissism Comes To Church: Healing Your Community from Emotional and Spiritual Abuse.

This chapter presents a unique challenge: How do you do justice in just one chapter to the immense issues involved in the healing process when people and organizations have been traumatized by narcissistic abusers of word, deed, and power? There are entire books dealing with that.

And yet, I feel Chuck has done a credible job in that Herculean task to lift up healing with a framework that makes sense for both personal and organizational transformation. His use of the Exodus journey as a metaphor provides a meaningful touchstone for reflecting on the ups and downs of recovery. And his use of three people’s narratives — Paul, Stacy, and Heather — periodically throughout the chapter interweaves how individuals and institutions influence each other in both wounding and healing.

For this chapter, things went in a different direction as far as sharing my thoughts on Chuck’s material. A number of quotes struck me, and I decided to feature them, with a small amount of commentary. After the initial quote “slide,” the rest are numbered in the lower left-hand corner, and those numbers appear at the end of the subheads. Continue reading

NARCISSISM NOTES #11–Systems and Narcissism, Ch. 7: “The Gaslight Is On: Spiritual and Emotional Abuse.”

Introduction

Narcissism Notes share my interactions with material Chuck DeGroat presents in When Narcissism Comes To Church: Healing Your Community from Emotional and Spiritual Abuse. Here are six things that came out of my thinking about the two chapters in which Chuck dealt with dynamics in systems dominated by narcissism–the first three items from Chapter 6 and the last three from Chapter 7.

  1. The whole system gets poisoned/tainted.
  2. Systemic narcissism manifests with two different “faces.”
  3. We can composite deeper insight from viewing sick systems from different angles.
  4. People in self-serving systems try to make you think you’re the sane ones by joining and staying, but the crazy ones if you won’t stay compliant and want to leave.
  5. What we’ve called “gaslighting” is actually a range of toxic tactics.
  6. Important reasons for understanding narcissistic/toxic systems before attempting to start up or transition to a healthy system.

Let’s dive in and see what’s what … Continue reading

NARCISSISM NOTES #10–Systems and Narcissism, Ch. 6: “Understanding Narcissistic Systems.”

Introduction

Narcissism Notes share my interactions with material Chuck DeGroat presents in When Narcissism Comes To Church: Healing Your Community from Emotional and Spiritual Abuse. Here are six things that came out of my thinking about the two chapters in which Chuck dealt with dynamics in systems dominated by narcissism — the first three items from Chapter 6 and the last three from Chapter 7.

  1. The whole system gets poisoned/tainted.
  2. Systemic narcissism manifests with two different “faces.”
  3. We can composite deeper insight from viewing sick systems from different angles.
  4. People in self-serving systems try to make you think you’re the sane ones by joining and staying, but the crazy ones if you won’t stay compliant and want to leave.
  5. What we’ve called “gaslighting” is actually a range of toxic tactics.
  6. Important reasons for understanding narcissistic/toxic systems before attempting to start up or transition to a healthy system.

Let’s dive in and see what’s what … Continue reading

Futuristguy Blog Indexing Update

I’ve had an invisible backlog of administrative indexing and archiving work to do on this blog, with the more than 500 articles I’ve posted here. I’ve wanted to get the materials on abuse, recovery, and advocacy reorganized so their content is more clearly described and they are more accessible. So: write descriptions, create a better categorizing system. Not exactly dazzling duties, but work that makes for better navigation for readers to find what they need.

Anyway, in the last few days, I’ve finally gotten all of my most recent Futuristguy blog posts, case studies, and resource websites on systemic abuse indexed, with short descriptions and links to help make searches easier to find topics of interest. I still have some updates to add, with articles I posted from 2015-2017. This all represents nearly 15 years of research writing on related topics. But this is much, much better. For details, check out the expanded table of contents on the “Read This First” page.

For readers who are abuse survivors, advocates, and church/ministry leaders, Index #7 on Abuse Case Studies: Individuals and Institutions, Destructive and (Re)Constructive will likely be of special interest. It brings together all on one page the descriptions plus links to ALL CASE STUDIES I’ve written about, since 2008. There are currently around 50 situations listed (some used as examples in more than one category). They span the range of theological streams, ways of organizing church authority (polity), structural format (centralized or decentralized), and views on gender and parity in ministry. This comprehensive listing includes situations involving individuals and institutions, and whether their actions were destructive/toxic or constructive/healthy. Some of the case studies are presented in contrasting sets of positive/negative impact, some are do-it-yourself learn-and-discern format. When you explore the source documents I link to, you’ll find some of the cases are short, while others are the length of a medium sized book (45,000 to 60,000 words).

I believe this is one of most important resources I’ve compiled. I find that survivors, advocates, and church/ministry leaders regularly ask about specific situations of toxic leaders/systems, or examples of “best practices” in dealing with forms of abuse. This should prove helpful, having so many cases profiled all in one place, categorized and described and linked.

Glad to be this far along in the revamping project, which I’ve been formulating for months. Hopefully, this will up the usability of the *futuristguy* site.

Meanwhile, I’m coming up on my 17th blogaversary. I started April Fool’s Day of 2003. Seemed metaphorically appropriate, so I went with it. Thanks to Andrew Jones and Shannon Hopkins and Jessica Stricker, who were among those who encouraged and/or pestered me to get blogging!