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Have You Been Able To Help Heal Yourself Without Therapy?

Although, peer based, I learned a fast & dirty way of doing exposure therapy. And then tweaked it, to do solo.

Can you talk us through that process?

I am asking because right now I am thinking through two pieces of contradictory wisdom:

(1) One is to treat rumination over past trauma and intrusive thoughts as a form of addiction: so put the past behind you, go fully abstinent and make new, happy memories by taking up new hobbies and friendships, going no-contact with trigger people, just walk away and even change location.

(2) The second piece of advice seems to be to maximise your focus on past trauma, write it all out into a journal, talk it all out to a therapist (which in my case caused horrendous, debilitating rumination and intrusive thoughts between weekly sessions), and tell your truth to the trigger people (which may well cause them to go no-contact!). Seems to be two very different courses to navigate.

(On the sub-topic of telling your truth to the trigger people - I think this could be very empowering for those having trouble 'speaking truth to power' but also very dangerous. It might utterly destroy families. Tough call when you've always known since childhood that your aunt hit on your dad, and then in adult life you tell her - she may simply deny it and then never speak to you again out of the shame of being unmasked as having betrayed her sister, your mother.)
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I would understand if you prefer not to say, but if you can - which are the cults you have had experience of?

Am sure cults deserve their whole dedicated section on this forum.
Mod Note:


I would understand if you prefer not to say, but if you can - which are the cults you have had experience of?

Am sure cults deserve their whole dedicated section on this forum.

This would be a great opportunity to create a thread on the topic, if you would like to discuss cults with others.
Otherwise, keep this thread on topic.
Some reading/ youtube:
- eckhart tolle the power of now.

For what it's worth, I'm a survivor of a cult that has publicly documented abuses on its record and feel very wary about this book because its summaries and the first few pages and what its author says on Youtube seem very similar to what that cult teaches. Tolle may have good intentions, but his teachings can go wrong. A couple of things: (1) "Live in the present moment." (2) "Negativity is bad."

Sure, not obsessing about the past (ruminating, flashbacks, post-traumatic behaviours) is where we want to get to if we have PTSD. But avoiding our past or pretending it can be ignored will make us even more unwell. It's the very opposite of 'exposure therapy' or the therapeutic idea of facing one's 'shadow'. I have seen people in a cult who were abused as children go on to abuse children because they were so busy 'living in the present moment' that they had no clue that they were playing out their pasts.

If negativity is so bad for Tolle, why is he so very negative about negativity? Negativity about child abuse isn't bad. A child abuser gets a lot out of telling their victim to stop being so negative, when they get confronted about what happened.

Tyrants don't want us to talk about what they did in the past, and tyrants don't want us to be negative about them. Addicts take their substance in order to live in the present and to feel less negative.

I'm a survivor of PTSD and have massively improved. I did this by being negative about the causes of my trauma and by unravelling my past. Today, I experience joy and contentedness, and wear my scars with relative comfort.

I can see this post could come across as disagreeable, argumentative or morally superior - none of which is my intention and I hereby apologize if it came across that way. If it does, please help me to find better words. I am trying to share and to help, with heartfelt sincerity.