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But she doesn’t look back on the decades she spent as a Christian homeschooling mother with any derision.“One of the good things about being in that community was the relationships that I made with women,” she says.At the same time, his wife began corresponding, via early-1990s AOL chat folders on religion, with an inquisitive Christian computer programmer named Rick Seelhoff.Their letters, thoughtful explorations of theology and human behavior, were later included as evidence in .Now, she alleged certain of these leaders had conspired to financially cripple her magazine punishing her for breaking rank. She wrote in a sweet, practical voice, using exclamation points liberally.After months of depositions and paperwork, she had finally taken the stand. The publication also featured articles and columns on hospitality and herbalist midwifery written by church leaders and other mothers.
In the five years following the 1989 launch, the number of homeschooling families in Washington more than doubled, from 5,536 to 13,584.
James Dobson, and started speaking routinely at conferences.
Seelhoff, like many on the religious right, had taken up the cause of homeschooling; it represented for her a more holistic way of life.
“When I realized it wasn’t going to stop,” she says of the harassment she experienced from 1994 on, “I felt like I didn’t really have a choice but to file the lawsuit.” Sue Welch, Mary Pride and Joe Williams, her former pastor, were all named as defendants, though by trial time all but Welch had settled for amounts they agreed to keep confidential.
(None of the defendants responded to requests for comments on this story.) Seelhoff now sees what happened to her as a sign of what would come as the religious right gained more control over women’s lives.
Cheryl Lindsey had over 15,000 mostly female subscribers and was gaining nearly a thousand per month. Her husband, Claude Lindsey, had been out of work for four years, according to their 1995 divorce-related filings, and she claims his anger problems had led to abusive behavior toward her and the children.