I found a newly available series of videos taken from the old Geraldo Rivera show from the '80s. All the segments are very valuable, but I wanted to draw attention to some specific information first. The first video posted here opens up with a great description of what happens when you experience a high degree of cognitive dissonance. There are many other elements of spiritual abuse (thought reform and mind control) that the guests on the show the discuss.
In the first clip, some of the guests that emerged from fundamentalist Christian groups talk about their experiences in abusive fundamentalist Evangelical groups. It's very interesting to see the Teen Challenge alumni become offended. Since this original broadcast, Teen Challenge has changed leadership and experienced quite a few cultic problems which can be researched on line at sites like FactNet. Rick Ross made it clear that not all Evangelical groups practice thought reform or mind control, and even Geraldo was kind enough to point this out.
The Teen Challenge alumni become quite offended and question the salvation of the young woman who was raped in a cultic Christian church. They accused her of not reading her Bible or of studying the Word of God. This is a common misunderstanding about cults -- knowledge of the Bible provides NO insulation against cultic manipulation. The Teen Challenge folks also challenge the young woman by pointing out her sin of turning to drugs, even though she was born again. (It is the shame mongering that takes place in so many pious churches that I believe turns Christian kids into the world. It was certainly true of my peers and myself in my youth. Discovering that the pastor of the church that ran the Christian School I attended did not help.) Is this not similar to the experiences of so many in the Patriarchy movement? "It must be your fault." When I eventually post all the videos of the entire program, you will note that she was blamed for her own rape by church staff because they said that her heart was unpure. She brought the rape on herself because she admitted to the desire to have a boyfriend. Wanting a boyfriend at age 16 makes a person at fault if they get raped?
In the second segment shown here, Rick Ross (of the Rick Ross Institute listed in the resources on the sidebar of this page) and a counselor from "Fundamentalists Anonymous" compare and contrast "Exit Counseling" versus the antiquated practice of "Deprogramming", even though the Geraldo show identifies exit counseling as deprogramming on their graphics and the guests refer to it in this terminology. The gentleman from Fundamentalists Anonymous describes contemporary exit counseling, though Rick Ross essentially agrees with him.
In the next post on this topic, I will include the segment that contains the testimony of the young woman featured here who was raped by a staff member at her church. (She was at fault primarily "because she was the woman.") I will then post all the segments together in one post for future and easy reference.