• Lisa

Abusive Relationships and Cults

Therapy for those who have experienced abusive relationships is the same as therapy for those who have experienced life in a cult. The same measures that unhealthy people use to exploit and control others are used by those with power in high-demand groups known as cults.

Here is an explanation of various types of abuse that people I know experienced in thre Move of God, the cult I grew up in.

• Physical abuse is when a person hurts or tries to hurt a partner by hitting, kicking or using another type of physical force.

• Sexual abuse is forcing or attempting to force a partner to take part in a sex act, sexual touching or a non-physical sexual event (e.g., sexting) when the partner does not or cannot consent.

• Verbal abuse is when a person forcefully criticizes, insults or belittles someone else to make them feel less than.

• Emotional abuse is undermining a person’s sense of self-worth and/or self-esteem by constant criticism, name-calling or damaging relationships with their support system.

• Financial abuse is withholding or limiting access to finances or acting in a manner where it puts your income at risk (e.g., tries to get you fired).

• Spiritual abuse is when a person insults or prevents another person from practicing their religion or uses religious beliefs to manipulate or shame them in ways to justify the abuse.

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