Recovery from cults
Date: January 30, 2003 12:23AM
I have been out of the 3HO cult for over a year now but my exit began while I was still in the cult, about 4-5 years before I actually left.
My advice for parents, is keep the doors of communication open and just listen. My mother has told me after I left 3HO, that I taught her patience. I was in the cult for 27 years!
As to cult members recovery, it was very important to have someone who would listen to me, unconditionally. It is a process of totally unraveling of one's belief systems and the process of finding one's own way through it, and that takes a lot of energy.
The process for me took many different stages.
But at some point, all I could do, was stare at the wall as my mind would bring up past memories, which was my process of seeing things for what they really are.
There was a time, I felt great betrayal, anger, I could not trust anyone again and could I even trust myself and my own judgement.
I needed to do a lot of reading of cult books, talking and processing of past memories. I definately went through a post traumatic stress syndrome but with time and unconditional understanding and my mother being there for me, I feel I have recovered very nicely. I also had a cult counselor for a time, which was helpful, when my Mom just couldn't understand or relate.
I have integrated back into society nicely but in certain areas I am still recovering. Have made no new friends yet and lost all my past friends in the cult. I am just about to start getting out there with the intention of getting to know more people and hopefully will find some new friends. I think also, what helped me a lot, was I had a place I could go and read about others experiences in the 3HO cult. There are a few x3ho forums that I read and particapted in, that helped me greatly in discovering the truth about 3HO and processing my own history and seeing things for what they really are and what was really taking place.
When you are in a cult, there are so many mind controling things put into place, that we never got to compare notes from other members, and in this kind of environment, many injustices took place within the cult and to cult members. So open communication is very important and you may find your child or other cult members very strong willed to expressing themselves after leaving a cult. I personally did a lot of journalling and posting to x3HO forums, as part of my process of unraveling the misconceptions, mis placed belief system and getting clarity.
There is life after being in a cult and it is a process that hopefully is supportive as one puts ones life back together.