I was raised in a cult.. saying that scares me to death!
Posted by: Flossie May ()
Date: December 04, 2016 06:54AM

I have recently come to terms with the fact that I was raised in a very cult like church. My own Grandfather was the pastor.
As far back as I can remember God has always been drilled into my head as someone I should fear and I must live my life a certain way or I will surely find myself in the lake of fire.
First of all let me apologize for my grammar. It too is a downfall of being raised in my church. I was pulled out of school in the 6th grade and put into homeschooling. With both parents working it wasn't a proper education and sadly grammar is where I struggle the most.
Some of my earliest memories are of my Mom being sad. Sad because she wanted to move to another state to be near her family and "Gods Chosen Church". My Dad however was dead set against it. We lived near his family and I had a wonderful family with Grandparents and aunts and uncles that loved me.
However at five years old I remember being put into the back of a car by my Mom and driving 1200 miles without my Dad's knowledge to be near my moms family. My Dad of course put two and two together hopped on a plane and almost beat us here.
This is where my story gets interesting. My Mom was adamant that she had to be near her family and go to her dad's church which at that time was a building in their back yard. My Dad desperate to keep his family together agreed to move.
My next years were very sad with alot of the only joys being when my Grandparents came to visit or we took trips back home. My Dad still didn't agree with what my Grandpa taught and there was alot of fighting that went on. I remember my mom always being terrified that he would end up in hell. She would beg him to come to church then be mad and give him the silent treatment when he didn't come.
Christmas was a big no no in the church yet my Dad still took us back home to celebrate it with my Grandparents. One if my earliest memories is sitting by the tree excited about opening my presents. I remember looking over at my mom and instantly felt shame for wanting them. My Mom took my sister and I back to the bedroom closed and locked the door took the Bible out and proceeded to tell us why it was wrong.
Alot of my childhood was spent like this. My mom telling me one thing and my dad telling me another. Endless church meetings and singings.Constant fear of God. God was coming back,we were living in the end times... I use to hear a plane and get scared. If I couldn't find my Mom I would panic and think I'd been left behind.
My Mom was always on my Dad to come to church. There was plenty of screaming matches at my house. Dad would give in once in awhile just to get her to shutup. Then one day when I was 11 Dad stood up in church and said he was ready to start his conversion. I remember everyone saying it was a miracle! My mom sat in her seat and cried like a baby. I remember driving home thinking my life was going to get better because the endless fights would stop. Little did I know my Hell had just started.
My Dad went full force into his new faith .. . Next thing I knew our TVs were gone along with all of our CDs and and books. Pants soon followed although we did get them back occasionally but only with long tops to cover our sinful behinds.My Dad became my Grandpa's right hand man. He even started to preach. He would closely monitored our every move and would grill us about what we weren't allowed to do if we went anywhere. We weren't allowed to ever miss church so it was nothing to see people sick laying on the church pew.
I always heard my Grandpa be referred to as the end time prophet. Although to his credit he never called himself that. The faith he preached was loosely based on Pentecostanlism. We believed there was one God and the Trinity was false. He taught that Sinless perfection was not only possible but mandatory. Holidays and Doctors were a big no no. He said he could never see a child of God getting cancer.
Dating was a nightmare. You were grilled about when your boyfriend would come to church and others would openly give their opinions about if they thought they were a "true seed". I know of two or three boyfriends who were scared away by this tactic.
Anyways, years passed by and eventually I did get married and have kids. I found myself trying to mold them into what my family expected them to be. I use to try and make my three year old sit on a church pew for 3 hours quietly. I can't tell you the amount of spankings given out in that church.
As time went on older people began to get sick. My great Aunt became sick with breast cancer and died. I watched them try to see their way around it by saying she put to much faith in doctors. Then a cousin who was very devout got sick with cancer. When she died I seen a big shift in the belief which made me start to question things. The final big straw was my Grandpa who said he always believed the Lord would come back in his lifetime got sick with what I believe to be Colon cancer (even though he never went to the doctor). When he died it shook the whole church. There was those that actually believed God was going to raise him from the dead.
After he died things started to go downhill. Some people wanted my Dad to take over and others wanted my uncle. Fights soon broke out and I couldn't handle the tension anymore and left.
That was about five years ago. Since then my Mom and Dad have left along with a few other family members. When you leave I liken it to the Amish shunning. You are the tares and they are the wheat. We have fallen away from the truth. My Mom and Dad still have weekly Bible studies and I think still basically believe the same. My Dad is no where near as strict as he once was and at times I think he knows it was and is a cult. My Mom still holds onto my Grandpa's teachings as the truth although she admits alot of it is cult like.
Until recently I never talked about it. Then I had a cousin who left and all these fears and anger have just come pouring out of me. I'm starting to realize alot of Bible verses were taken out of context, but the fear is still there. Even writing this I fear I am blaspheming the Holy Ghost and will be sent to Hell.
It's hard because they are all family. They aren't like a Jim Jones drink the Kool aid cult but it is a cult none the less. I've noticed that I have days where I'm angry then days when I'm sad. I'm angry mostly at my mom for moving me here and messing my head up. I've been telling my husband I need counseling but how will they ever understand this? Every time something bad happens I think God is punishing me for leaving the truth.
I just wanted to reach out and see if there is others like me. At times I feel like I'm going crazy. I desire to go to church but I've always been told other church's are bad. I'm sorry this is so long and believe me I could write a book. Thank you for taking the time to read this.
Flossie May

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Re: I was raised in a cult.. saying that scares me to death!
Posted by: dtindall11 ()
Date: January 14, 2017 03:00AM

That must have been scary. I believe that cult leaders use their position to instill fear and power over their people.

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Re: I was raised in a cult.. saying that scares me to death!
Posted by: howmidoing ()
Date: April 01, 2017 09:42AM

Oh, Flossie May! I AM SORRY that all that happened to you! But I know for me it is very relieving to write out some of the pain. I suggest that you do in fact write a book!!! Your story would certainly make for an interesting read! And don't worry about your grammar, you got the points across perfectly!

There are many of us here that have dealt with similar situations.

Peace to you. I would encourage you to find a new church, an established one, and to read scripture with a study guide or devotional.

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Re: I was raised in a cult.. saying that scares me to death!
Posted by: gladtobeout ()
Date: April 18, 2017 08:14AM

Hi Flossie May,

As my name implies... I too was indoctrinated in a cult, grew up in one for a decade. Didn't know it till i was out.

I support you in telling your story. It is an empowering thing to feel heard, especially when one has spent part of their life being told what to think, feel and what to say and do by someone else.

As far as finding another church. If it is Jesus that you still believe in, then they say, He is in your heart already. Don't worry. Far be it from me to offer spiritual advice, or guidance to a stranger... I will say that the Creator of the universe, in my opinion, doesn't make mistakes, and is allowing life to continue on this earth... Wooo! Am i glad! : )

Joy is your strength. And "laughing and crying, you know it's the same release..."

I hope this message finds you well.


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Re: I was raised in a cult.. saying that scares me to death!
Posted by: NancyB ()
Date: March 08, 2018 10:51AM

I am so sorry this happened to you. You are not alone.

What you wrote shows very similar destructive patterns of behavior among the far too many groups that are cults disguised a releigion.

I hope you find closure that you need. By coming fowrad, you have shined some light for others who need closure or the strength to walk away.

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Re: I was raised in a cult.. saying that scares me to death!
Date: November 05, 2018 11:56AM

I'm so sorry you are going through this. If you can afford it, I would strongly suggest counseling with a therapist trained in providing professional help to people that have been in cult. I hope you can find some answers. Stay strong and go with your heart. You probably know many of the right things to do.

Take care.

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