First off, if anyone has ever been in a cult, please message me I could use someone who could relate.
Here's the thing: I mentioned in a previous post that I'm kinda going through a third wave of dealing with a traumatic event. Only, this traumatic "event" lasted for 23 years because that's how long I was in a cult. Born and raised, my whole family in it. For about 2 years after I left, I had major issues that all ex-cult members face as far as overwhelming guilt and fear. It's always been an "us against them" type of attitude and "we're the only ones who care". Leaving the only life you've ever known really fucks with you. No other way to put it. Lost a lot of family because of it. A lot of people who I thought cared, don't. Felt very alone, but ended up making my own family. Kind of the way when someone comes out as gay or whatever, they make their own family if their blood relatives have issues with it. You have to. Obviously not the same thing, but as far as making your own family goes, kinda similar.
Anyway, I thought I was over it. I "found God" again after a mushroom trip and an accident that left me handicapped. I'm secure in my beliefs, I'm not "religious". I wouldn't say I'm "enlightened" but I've learned a lot of truths and it helped me through the first couple of waves of PTSD from other events. It's been a rough life. But I'm finally in a safe, stable environment after 31 years. Maybe my brain just can't handle that. I don't know.
My cousin messaged me a couple weeks back. I haven't talked to her but maybe a couple of times since I left, only because she was still in. I still love my blood relatives, they just don't give a shit about me. She messaged me on FB and says "I NEED to talk to you". Figured someone died and knew no one would let me know. But I called and she said "I'm leaving". And I had a short-of-breath-dizzy moment. But, pulled it together to help her out. She just needed to talk, needed advice, needed to hear some experience, just needed someone who went through it. She's in the beginning stages of getting out, and I'm there 100% for her. I wished I had someone at the time I was getting out.
I want to emphasize I don't blame her. I'll be here for her.
However, it still brought everything back. Everything at the same intensity I felt and thought of when I first left, and everything about that place. Guess that's how it works. Just sucks. I'm even terrified to talk about it here honestly. Had to debate on whether I should say something or not. I'm scared someone from there will see it and somehow know it's me. Or at least have a suspicion. Guess I'll just roll the dice though.
A few days after I talked to her, at about 1am I was doing research for a new drawing. Needed a reference picture. On a google image search, the inside of a church building was among all the other pictures. It wasn't the same building, and it wasn't built smiliar or pews laid out the same. The only thing in common was the color scheme. A green, tan, and white. I had a flashback with hallucinations. I have flash backs, but they are extremely rarely with hallucinations. Within about 3, almost 4 years of being diagnosed and treatment, I could count the ones with hallucinations on one hand. Ever since then, I've been an absolute mess. It's constant. Yes, I'm in therapy but damnit it's only helping a little. But, a little is better than not at all, right?
Anyway, there's all that. If you've been in a cult, please message me.
Hi - My therapist recommended this book. Thoughts?
Today, I live in fear. I'm free from my past physically, but I continue to wait for the other shoe to drop. I'm learning that trauma lingers and I'm also in a state of fight or flight. Sometimes I feel like I'm going to lose everything and everyone. Being with a new partner has been healing, but when I'm not doing well with my trauma, I start to read into things and fear the worst-I fear...