What is the Bravest Thing You’ve Ever Done?

liontiger

by AJ cross posted from her blog I am PhoenixThe bravest thing I have done so far in my life has been allowing myself to feel.I was able to make it as far as I did  in life appearing on the outside to be normal and functional because I buried the past. Completely. I didn't talk about it to anyone, and I didn't acknowledge it to myself.Being numb to it was the only way I could survive. I purposely hung around with people who didn't talk about feelings or emotional things. I buried who I was, even if it meant I also had to bury my intuition, my creativity, my feelings, my empathy, and any form of introspection. … [Read more...]

Cults, Christianity, Toxic Beliefs and Health

backyard

by AJ cross posted from her blog I Am PhoenixI recently separated from a religious cult that I grew up in. During the time I was questioning the beliefs of this cult, I realized that many of these beliefs unfortunately are also foundational beliefs in modern day evangelical Christianity as well. So I ended up leaving not only the cult, but Christianity also. … [Read more...]

Coming Out of the Cult Closet

be love

by AJ cross posted from her blog I Am PhoenixThe last year has been full of shifts, most of them tumultuous, but most of them ending up being quite positive. In the actual moment, each change didn't feel positive. It felt like I was wearing skin that didn't fit me anymore, and I was trying to wrestle out of it. Much like a critter shedding it's old skin. Painful, itchy, uncomfortable, exhausting. But then each time I shed an old layer, it felt great afterwards to relax and sit in the sun, so to speak with spanking new skin that felt all new and glowing. … [Read more...]

Stand Up and Speak Your Truth

lion

by AJ cross posted from her blog I Am PhoenixI have always had a hard time standing up for myself. I chalk it up to the way I grew up. I grew up in a cult where women and children weren't allowed to speak up for themselves, especially when we were abused. We weren't allowed to ask "Why?" even in a quiet voice. We were to take abuse quietly, submissively, like Godly females would. Otherwise, all hell would break loose. So, my sisters and I grew up with blank, obedient minds. We were trained to obey male authority without question, and we had a healthy fear of the chain of command above us. We were Godly, submissive sheep who obeyed at the blink of an eye. We grew up with no defenses … [Read more...]

Then and Now

brokenumbrella

by AJ cross posted from her blog I Am PhoenixI'm becoming more and more aware that I don't need to "aware" of my beliefs in order for them to affect my life.My beliefs shape the way my life is branching out right at this very moment, even if many of these beliefs were formed many years ago and I don't give them much thought today. … [Read more...]

Dousing a Fire

by AJ cross posted from her blog I am PhoenixBack when things just rolled right off me.Why do I often feel so sensitive, defensive and maligned against? Some days, it's like my body is a magnet that draws to itself and magnifies each hurt, each bit of slander, each little judgement I sense may be directed towards me. What some people can easily shrug off is like a crushing weight to me.I used to be able to shrug off implied insults or hurts more easily when I was young. They seemed to roll off me like water off a duck's back. I just didn't get insulted. Direct insults didn't hurt me, even when they were directed right at me. It's like I knew I was a winner, and … [Read more...]

Sneaky Subconscious

keep fighting

by AJ cross posted from her blog I am PhoenixI've  been experiencing some shifts lately, and my eyes keep opening up to new breakthroughs. Some with my subconscious. It's completely exciting for me. Somewhat painful. I feel like things are ripping on the inside of me. In a good way. I feel somewhat more balanced now than I used to be. I'm getting used to the constant changes in my perspectives. I feel like I accept things more. … [Read more...]

Thank You, Dad

by AJ cross posted from her blog I am PhoenixDad,Thank you for showing me who I am not.Age fiveYou beat me with a rod because I laughed when my baby brother shot peas out of his mouth and laughed. My baby brother wasn't obeying you when told to eat neatly, and you said he was old enough to have the devil beat out of him. You said the next one who laughed when my baby brother spit peas onto his high chair would get the rod. The next one was me. So you beat me with a wooden rod. … [Read more...]

My Brave Sisters

sisters

by AJ cross posted from her blog I am PhoenixThe other day, I saw an ad for a TV show where a group of Amish young people were set loose in NYC. I laughed because I knew what they were going through. I've lived through a similar experience, except there weren't cameras following my every move. I grew up in a cult that was similar to Amish or Mennonite homes, … [Read more...]

Religion Makes Abuse Easy

Field

by AJ cross posted from her blog I Am Phoenix(Editor's Note - Let's all welcome AJ as she is the newest member of NLQ's Spiritual Abuse Survivor Blogs Network! Welcome AJ!)Religion makes abuse easy. There it is, pure and simple. A truth I've born witness to.Walk with me down this road. Travel back in time with me, and open the window to the kitchen in my parents' house. Poke your head in and listen with me. Look at the old farmstead kitchen table, and the meek kids with their heads lowered in submission, while the patriarch booms on at the head of the table, lecturing and teaching after dinner before everyone's dismissed from the table. … [Read more...]


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