New Age vs Traditional Therapists - An example
Date: January 25, 2008 01:18AM
The following paragraph in italics was written by a woman who was in an abusive relationship. It wasn't with a guru or dangerous group, but the similarities between these types of groups and individuals and that of abusive intimate relationships are stunning. This woman wrote about a trigger - something someone told her her ex was doing and it brought back bad memories, which triggered rage and anxiety. She went to her therapist and discussed her reaction and this is what she wrote...
I told her that I HATED it that I felt so hurt by his antics and I HATED that I felt anything toward him at all, even if it was anger. She explained that the pain is there for a reason, it is the memory of the pain. And, that pain keeps me from ever thinking that it would be a good idea to go back to him. We are built to preserve memories of our pain so that we don't keep hurting ourselves. If we stuck our hand in a fire and didn't remember how much it hurt, we would keep doing it over and over. So, that pain being reactivated and brought back to life was totally normal and not in any way a sign that I am still stuck on him or attached in any way. It was just a memory brought back to life.
Contrast this reply with one a therapist who has succumbed to any one of the LGATs, The Secret type of thinking, etc. I ran into a couple of these after my experience and this is the first thing that came out of their mouths: Why are you afraid to let go of your anger towards him? Why are you making him wrong? What does your anger say about you?
In other words, having a normal human reaction to a bad situation is, well, wrong. According to Secretons, this woman is attracting her bad situation, and attracted it then. If her therapist wsa Landmarkian, this would be a prime example of the racket she was running to look good and also to not be happy.
Leaving a cult, an LGAT, a circular way of thinking, or an abusive relationship, there is usually confusion as to what is truth, what went wrong, what could have been done differently, guilt about leaving, guilt about one's own role, guilt and bad feelings about those left behind. It is why people jump back in.
The woman who wrote the excerpt above is a successful business woman with a great life, living in the aftermath of an abusive relationship with a well-known physician. She is extremely fortunate to a therapist who is well-educated, compassionate and caring, and accountable.