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Mind Control and Abusive Relationships
Posted by: HopefulMom ()
Date: July 22, 2005 12:02AM

Does anyone know of a support group for families including someone in an abusive-controlling relationship? I need to talk to someone who has gone through what I am going through: My youngest daughter (have five kids; she is a twin and was 18 when sh e left) has gone to live with her 23-year-old extremely controlling boyfriend, who won't allow us to visit her...we go weeks with no contact with her, and this is SO out of the blue -- our family is extremely close, and she never showed any signs of wanting to put such distance between us. We are cut out of her life now. On the rare occasion when we see her, he is text-messaging her CONSTANTLY. She is not hostile, and seems to be in denial thinking this is somehow "normal" or okay. This has been going on for 9 months -=- she literally left in the middle of the night. We are SO sad, and so worried about her. I am seeing a therapist who has some ideas that I'd like to discuss with someone in a similar situation. P.S. The boyfriend hates us, esp. me, even though he lived with us for four months last summer and I treated him like one of my children. He was an abused child and has never had a family life. Now he just wants my daughter and wants to keep us away (including her friends).

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Mind Control and Abusive Relationships
Posted by: Toni ()
Date: July 22, 2005 01:32PM

Hi "Mom":

I suggest watching this DVD, and reading a few of the books that are suggested at the end of it.
Very tough situation (I know that's an understatment) Good Luck!

[www.culteducation.com]

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Mind Control and Abusive Relationships
Posted by: HopefulMom ()
Date: July 22, 2005 08:48PM

Thank you so much -- yes, I ordered and watched the DVD a few weeks ago, after I became aware of Rick Ross's work. Unfortunately everything he talked about in the DVD resonated completely with my daughter and her controller. My therapist advised that we try to bring her closer by inviting them both and his foster parents (who he says will have us arrested if we try to visit them) over for dinner -- extending the olive branch. I talked to her last night and she seemed excited and said she would ask them all. This way, if they don't come (and they won't), he looks like the bad guy, not us.

Again, thank you for your response. I look forward to hearing from anyone who has (unfortunately) been in a similar situation and can let me know what worked or didn't for them.

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Mind Control and Abusive Relationships
Date: September 13, 2005 02:57PM

Quote
bonnie

Sound familiar?

No.

The destructive cult I was in practiced pairing healthy successful women with dreadfully dysfunctional and dangerous men and women were coerced into cuncubine or secondary wives situations. I was never attracted to the kind of men drawn to the doctrine and nearly fail vicitm to intensified manipulation to bring me into the fold of the cult who used men to victimize and hold the attention of women.

Prior to and even more to the letter after my destructive cult experiences. I choose very wisely and healthy in my personal relationships, after my cult experiences I find myself dancing off in all directions surrounded by love and appreciation. Those who know me understand that I will get jangled if anyone crowds me or tries to cramp my style tenfold after my cult experiences. So they leave me alone to myself free to suit myself. As long as I am left free to follow my own course, then I will be tolerant.

Good books! I hope you find a love deserving of you.

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bonnie
There's a really interesting, (albeit esoteric and controversial), book that I like to refer to called [b:79301fea4d]"People of the Lie"[/b:79301fea4d], by M. Scott (?) Peck, the guy who also wrote "The Road Less Traveled". [b:79301fea4d]It's about evil[/b:79301fea4d].

There are a number of points in it I will relate here:

1. People who are raised by "evil", or narcissistic, parents may lose the natural ability to recognize it in others when they encounter it outside of their family.

2. "Evil", or narcissistic, people often gravitate towards, immerse themselves in, and hide behind religious groups and organizations in order to preserve their self-image of perfection.

I will take it one step further; I think evil people use the facade of religion to disarm potential victims. This is not a novel idea, and I do not claim to have invented it.

I was raised by narcissistic parents whose main tricks were instilling self-doubt and distrust in our own senses. "You didn't see that, you didn't hear that, you're crazy, blah, blah, blah".
For that reason, when my gut tells me that the crap is being slung, I have to focus with great determination or [b:79301fea4d]I Don't Notice It![/b:79301fea4d]
I also feel very comfortable in situations where I am around narcissistic, conniving people, [b:79301fea4d]because it's what I grew up with![/b:79301fea4d]
It feels like home.

It's not true that I went looking for a new family when I encountered my particular cults. But when I did become involved with them, they felt very comfortable. [b:79301fea4d]I was Home[/b:79301fea4d].

[b:79301fea4d]And I have never had a romantic relationship that can be called even marginally functional. I don't know how to recognize, attract, or relate to fully functional individuals. I can no longer tolerate the chaos of disfunctional relationships, so I am a real loner, but I have not gotten over the stigma of my family of origin. It's as if I am a magnet for narcissist persons. I don't like it, but that's the way it is. I know a lot of people in a similar boat. We have outgrown the need for the bullshit, but haven't learned how to replace it with anything else yet.

Sound familiar?[/b:79301fea4d]

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Re: Mind Control and Abusive Relationships
Posted by: WiserNow ()
Date: August 31, 2008 12:17PM

STERLINE INSTITUTE of RELATIONSHIP; the epitomy of Abusive and Controlling Relationships. The group advocates abusing women in general, and in particular, those who are not part of their organization (Family of Wommen). The control and abuse runs the gammet from simply mistrusting the "devious" female sex and women's "inability to love", to starting relationships with women with the sole intention of using them only for sex, to bullying their wives if they don't cow tow to the "male power", cheating is condoned as long as the guy "isn't stupid enough to get caught". (Justin Sterling's teachings.)

I wound up, unwittingly, in a “short-term recreational" relationship (definition below) with a Sterling Institute of Relationship (SIR) guy. If anyone reading this is considering getting involved with an SIR guy, a Mens’ Division guy or any other such SIR affiliate, please read and then run in the opposite direction, and don’t look back.

When I began dating this guy, he told me a bit about this men’s group he was active in, and in which he held a leadership position so I went up to the official SIR web site, read about its mission, and thought it was a good thing; it worked with my somewhat traditional (though not medieval) view of men and relationships. After he unceremoniously dumped me, a friend advised me to Google SIR so I would know what kind of guy I’d been involved with, and what his so-called “men’s organization” was REALLY about. (That’s how I found Rick Ross.) I only wish I had done this earlier. I could’ve saved myself a lot of pain and self doubts. There were warning signs which I patently ignored.

First off, he was a first-rate liar. On our 2nd date, he told me his marriage failed because his wife never allowed him to have sex with her; they never consummated their marriage because she’d been traumatized by rape. He didn’t realize the extent of her problem until they married. (He wanted to wait until marriage before they had sex. Sounds charming, but? ) As a result, he said he didn’t have kids. The next day I Googled him and found his family tree online. There I learned he did have a child with her, a son. So he lied on both counts. But because I was drawn to him, I figured the dissolution of his marriage and estrangement from his son must have been terribly painful, and he hadn’t felt like discussing the facts until we knew each other better. My thought was to wait and eventually he’d feel close enough to confide in me, which of course never happened. I never brought it up.

There were other signs. He always talked about men growing up “feminized” (He grew up with 3 brothers, no sisters, yet he was sure –paranoid – that his manhood had been compromised), how women were “devious”, how men were just lovable “jerks”, prone to bad behavior, complained about taxes like some old cranky man (think Grandpa character on the Simpson’s “Back in my day, we didn’t have ______, and we LIKED it!") Yea, I hung out with a guy like that. Ew!

During the six months we were involved, when we did get together, I admit he could be affectionate, smart, an interesting conversationalist, and the sex was great. But he kept me at arm’s distance, after a couple months he began going home in the middle of the night, never allowed me inside his home, never invited me out with his friends (I suppose they all knew I was just a STR girlfriend), never introduced me to his family, etc. Several times I asked him if he was really interested in me, or if he wanted a meaningful relationship with me. He always answered yes, but looking back, I have to admit, his reply lacked conviction. Actions speak louder than words. After discovering (too late) the level of his dishonesty (no intention of developing a committed, caring relationship in the first place) it all made sense. And it was hurtful. I felt used by a guy who touted all this "honorable man" stuff. What a load.

But remember, unbeknownst to me, he was simply practicing one of the Sterling boys’ most offensive, but time-honored nasty tradition of using women in what they call a short term recreational way. (Would be nice if the Sterling boys were honest about that upfront. There might be gals who don’t want a commitment, just recreational sex a la Samantha of Sex in the City. More power to those who are can be like that. Then they could leave the rest of us who yearn for something more alone to pursue that.

Below is a description, straight from the Sterling Institute/Mens’ Division rule book - this is what the Sterling leaders present and advocate in their weekend initiation:
Short Term Recreational (STR)
• Defined as basically--for sex only, without involvement. You should get out of a STR relationship at the first sign of trouble, but with the following exceptions--
1. "If she gives good head"
2. "If she swallows"
3. "If she takes it up the ass".

It’s amazing that our relationship lasted as long as it did. Apparently I was just “practice” until someone better came along, which didn’t take too long. I believe he’s now in what the Sterling boys call a Long Term Committed relationship cuz I know the new gal is allowed inside his home. But I bet she’s not allowed to feminize, i.e. touch anything. ;-)

Long Term Committed (LTC)
• You should never get involved in a LTC relationship until you are totally self-sufficient which means you can go without pussy. You should never get involved in a LTC relationship until you have succeeded in STR relationships. (Meaning until you’ve used and dumped a few unaware women. – my addition – WISERNOW)

When we broke up - over the phone - he coldly said he wouldn’t give me any of his time. Yea, I was such a time suck; I made a point of rarely calling him, giving him plenty of time and space. I was sensitive to the fact that he had a business to run and other obligations. I’m not one to insinuate myself into someone’s life without an invitation. We didn’t get together more than once a week. His tone was dismissive and mean which was unnecessary. I understood it was over without him having to talk to me in such a harsh way. We haven’t spoken since although I have the misfortune of catching glimpses of him (rarely) since we live in the same neighborhood. Nothing like having to physically face your mistakes occasionally. But he's become easy to ignore.

I take responsibility for not ending things when there were so many indications that this relationship was extremely sick. My only excuse it that I was in a vulnerable state when we met and thus allowed this self-centered, negative person into my life. What bothers me the most is that I was kind, thoughtful and generous with him. I never got pushy and stupidly let things “take their time”. In the end he threw me away like yesterday’s newspaper. Maybe he was feeling some trouble brewing (like I might voice my need for a loving relationship) and needed to bail. This was afterall a Short-Term Recreational fling, and he had to uphold the definition, without my consent or knowledge. (It certainly isn't recreational for the women.)

Happy ending: Soon after, despite misgivings about getting involved with anyone ever again, I met a *wonderful* MAN!! He’s never needed to spend hundreds of dollars on a weekend “seminar” or countless hours in mandatory meetings w/ moronic, immature, women-hating guys in an effort to learn to be a man - he just is one. He’s masculine, funny, generous, caring, smart, athletic, successful, handsome and wild about me. We’ve been together for over a year. Maybe I needed to experience a horrible relationship to truly appreciate a great one.

But remember, friends don’t let friends get involved with SIR guys. Please spread the word to women you know. Guys associated with The Sterling Institute and its Mens Division are, for the most part, dishonest and self-centered with no qualms about hurting and using women as “short term recreational girlfriends”; not the kind of person a gal would want to let into her life. I don’t know how any sane, self-respecting woman would knowingly want to be intimate with a guy who she knows accepts and advocates using and tossing women (sisters) aside as if they had no feelings or value.

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Re: Mind Control and Abusive Relationships
Posted by: Harley21 ()
Date: October 07, 2008 12:46PM

I was part of a Sterling Mens Division. I did my weekend in July 2008. I was lured to the first meeting by thinking someone I knew wanted me to come and hang out with the guys. Right away I realized it was a mens club when we had to circle up. It seemed great at first. I was on a journey to find myself as a person I could be proud to be.....that is a long story in itself. So after that I went to a few more circles I was committing to enroll in the weekend.

The weekend is not talked about. Well what happens there is not talked about. When I got there we were instructed and ordered around like new recruits. I found this odd since we were supposed to become the men we always wanted to be. I went through the first night fuming because of all the BS that I was hearing. It was in no way for me.

The second day was a little better from some of the things we were doing. I did get some good stuff from that day....or at least some building blocks for myself. I did notice that if someone came up with a valid question or rebuttal to Sterling he would say "What does that matter " and blow them off. The end of the day there was a ceremony and we were told that sometimes nudity does happen. It wasnt required and only a couple of men did disrobe. I must say that end was pretty fun.....but thats me.

Really I feel that Sterlings teachings sort of had a reverse effect on me. I was clear of mind but I was noticing his Bulls@$t and thought of him as an old short fat man with little man syndrome and not very happy. I wanted to slap him but I am not violent .

So after the Weekend we started a Point Team. What a crock! We met at stupid hours. The day I decided to quit after 3 weeks of thinking it through ( on problem I am working on is not finishing things I start) I noticed the hypocricy of our Leaders. There is no individuallity because that is ego. They always think women are bad. It just wasnt a good fit for me.

The end result I got from all this.......BE THE MAN YOU ALWAYS WANTED TO BE AS LONG AS ITS THE MAN WE WANT YOU TO BECOME.

I am so greatful I have an amazing wife who let me learn my lessons on my own with no infuence from her. I guess thats where the trust comes in. I am happier since leaving the group and thankful that I now know I AM the man I wanted to be.....married to my awesome wife!

I am writing this fast and leaving lots of things out, so if any questions please ask. I guess for me some good came out of my experience but I would for sure stear others away from SIR.....although it is what the man makes of it.

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Re: Mind Control and Abusive Relationships
Posted by: Sallie ()
Date: December 09, 2008 10:37PM

When talking about cult members I think we need to differentiatie between those who are ''lured'' into it and those who are ''born'' into it. The ''lured in'' member ''chose'' it. The ''born in'' member didn't.

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Re: Mind Control and Abusive Relationships
Posted by: Hope ()
Date: December 16, 2008 01:37AM

Sallie,

Please elaborate. Why do you have quotation marks around the word chose?

Also, getting back to the topic of the thread, what are your thoughts on those in abusive relationships, not cults?

Thanks,

Hope

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Re: Mind Control and Abusive Relationships
Posted by: Sallie ()
Date: December 16, 2008 02:01AM

Hope,
You are right. This was about relationships and not cults. I did not hear what Oprah and her friend actually said; I was only responding to the post. I became defensive because it sounded like 'victim blaming'...
So many victims, whether of abuse or cults, are born into the situation. Their choices are taken away. There are abusers or, people with abusive tendencies who ''choose'' to become cult leaders. That is what I should have posted.
I believe abuse becomes so intoxicating that an abuser, in time, cannot function if they have no victim. The victim is almost like an apendage.
Human beings are complicated creatures. We don't peck our way out of an egg shell and then fly the next day. We need to learn and grow slowly. We need to be taught how to defend ourselves. Every animal has some defense mechanism to be used against predators....every animal.
A human who is raised by an abuser/predator(I see them as the same) ...will...from infancy have those mechanisms tampered with and blocked and if possible removed.
Without defense mechanisms, an abuse victim grows into a perpetual target. No one chooses that.

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Re: Mind Control and Abusive Relationships
Posted by: Sallie ()
Date: December 16, 2008 02:16AM

Oh and Hope yes... you suggested that there is an element of ''mind control'' used in abusive relationships. I agree with that whole heartedly. In fact when I spoke of ''defense mechanisms'' being removed...it is almost the same. We humans usually use our mind to defend. ""For Your Own Good'' is an excellent book. I forget the author. She speaks of parental abuse. Basically her point is that a parent will harm the victim but, worse than the physical harm is the ''belief'' that is instilled in the child. The ''belief'' is that ''this is for your own good''. Alice something ...that's the author. She's brilliant. I believe the modern day psycho babble of ''you chose this''; is the same as ''this is for your own good''.
One comment implies ''you need this'' the other implies, ''you want this''.
Both are sadistic and add to the suffering....that's what I believe.

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