How to lose all your conservative, evangelical friends in a year or less.

A few have unfriended/blocked me. Many have unfollowed me. Most are disappointed in me. To my white, evangelical conservative friends and family, I’ll see you again soon, though it likely won’t be at a time that you or your young adult offspring are thriving. No fear though, I won’t say I told you so.

How does one take on this apparent feat? First by understanding that it’s hardly a feat. It’s actually incredibly easy.

I first noticed some church people began moving away from me when I suggested women were being manipulated by men with unsound birth practices. I questioned why women have turned over their one superpower— the ability to birth another soul from our bodies — to men.

Because it’s all about you.

That is, most women seek out an authority-figure doctor (64% are male). Next women invite said authority to tell them what to feel and how to be pregnant. Men then tell women where mamas should birth to make the MEN feel most comfortable. Though she’s the one who has to relax enough to hang her vagina out, making sure her husband and trusted OB aren’t nervous about where she’s birthing is THE most important priority. And of course men are most comfortable at a hospital, which is most likely designed, owned/board membered and operated by men.

Men then tell women when to birth (either by induction or by saying, “I’ll let you go until 41 weeks”). They tell mamas how to labor (“you can walk around but you have to be monitored, can’t eat anything, can’t be in the tub after the water is broke AND you have to stay on the floor”). They most certainly tell women what position to birth in even though birthing in stirrups for her is as useful as you pooping in the woods while sitting on your tailbone.

To lay a foundation for your conservative, evangelical friends to begin questioning you, suggest your sisters in the Lord break up with their OB and use a birth center instead. If you want to be more radical, show them how homebirths are as safe as hospital births. Feed your baby. In public. Without a cape. Consider becoming a birth doula. Join with improvingbirth.org in demanding the use of evidence-based birth practices and take it to the streets each Labor Day.

Next I learned that not only could women be empowered birth goddesses, but women could be educated healthcare consumers at large. They can choose other ways to take care of their wellness outside of the failing American healthcare *cough sickcare cough* system. I started a thriving small business where I inform people how to use natural methods to maintain wellness. To my sphere of influence, it was just a cute, bored-housewife-eye-roll thing I was toying around with…that is until I began making real money.

In several public conversations, be sure to mention you perceived what you can only describe as flows of energy or blockages of it in the L&D room and mention you’ve been reading up on something called chakras. Invite them to your essential oil event and inform them of their options. Women who understand their power and have money and purpose outside the home/church/ministries can’t be trusted. This is a must-do if you’re wanting to lose the fundamentalists for sure.

When you start your own business, you embark on a self-development journey. Your business will only grow to the extent that you’re willing to grow. So I began examining beliefs I held about a woman’s role, poverty and wealth, and social consciousness. People were starting to get really concerned at this point. There were whispers I’ve become a new-age feminist and several husbands caution their wives about talking to me on personal levels.

When I loudly proclaimed my former pastor was spirtually abusive to several of my friends, the official unfriending started. Many thought exposing abuse via social media was poor taste(because I had so many other options available to expose a well-entrenched, guarded pastor). Reminds me of how some devotees responded to the Boston Globe outing of abusive priests.

At this point, you’ve lost all the fundies and most of your conservative evangelical friends have gone quiet. Unless of course they’ve also experienced spiritual abuse. Those guys may still be hanging around because you share that abuse bond.

I completely forgot, throw a kid or two with neurological issues in there just to be sure. Those that can’t sit still or perform nicely on stage at church will really propel your forced exodus. Once they know you’ve stopped spanking your “willful” child, it’s pretty much over. If you want to seal the deal 100%, make sure one of the kids who won’t submit is a girl.

Now, if you’ve still got a few straggling conservative evangelicals saying hi and liking your posts, don’t worry. Standing against the almighty American narrative will take care of that.

That’s right. When someone mentions how they want to make America great again, ask them to define exactly what that means. On Columbus day, post Happy Indigenous People's day and express gratitude toward those who opened their borders, um, doors and fed your relatives instead of shooting them with arrows on the beach. Suggest that by talking about modesty alone, you’re contributing to the remaining rape culture. Talk about how being pro-life also means financially supporting that life after baby has been brought earthside. Comment negatively on articles suggesting Food Stamp limitations. Suggest that ending poverty has little to do with entitlement and getting free stuff. Post articles about the % of women holding public offices and the maternal/infant death rate, especially among non-whites.

To put the final touches on sending your conservative, evangelical friends running away from you be sure to educate them about white privilege and old money. Even bringing up systemic racism sets off any who still linger. Try suggesting that #alllivesmatter is one of the boldest examples of whites silencing blacks and is, in fact, exactly what is wrong with America.

Congratulations. You’ve done it. All your friends are gone. Carmen has left the building. To be sure, we need God in America again — but not the god of the 40s and 50s, nor the god of the 70s, 80s or 90s. The god that turned its eye to southern lynchings, glass ceilings and LGBT suicide rates should NEVER be invited to make America great again.

The God America needs is the Jesus who fed the hungry, hung out with prostitutes, healed the underprivileged and cursed the religious. May the people who love this Jesus surround and support you as you mourn the loss of former friends and step toward surrounding yourself with new ones.

And btw, I’m looking for some new friends.