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In Too Deep

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In Too Deep:

There comes a point when a follower of a religious cult is faced with a decision: submit to the authority of the central figure, or to walk away never to return. It is quite a difficult choice, given the undue influence of the cult. As the mental blocking of critical thought becomes more frequent, there are times when a cult follower is unable to break free. Until fully programmed, however, there are times when this life-changing decision to remain in a religious cult is weighed in the balance. Too often, the point at which this occurs is after deep roots have been planted.

Because their doctrine is based upon the precepts of mainstream theology, and because religious cults are not forthcoming as to the extreme differences between their group and mainstream religion, many followers do not notice until it is too late. Some bear children, and raise them from to believe cult doctrine. Others invest large sums of money in the cult, convinced that their money is going towards a good cause. Whatever the reason, many cult followers face this decision and ignore and suppress questions and gut feelings to become lifelong members. They were in too deep, and would suffer great loss should they admit being wrong.

It isn't until after leaving that these victims of a cult realize that "loss" is not a fixed magnitude. Roots planted in a cult continue to grow, long after warning signs have been ignored. Children raised in the cult will continue to be influenced, and will also bear children who will plant future roots. Though far less frequent with long-term cult manipulation, questions about their decision will surface from time to time. Each time, the response will be the same, "I'm in too deep".

After leaving, this is the burden former members must bear. They were in too deep, and it was very painful to leave. Their loss is great, and their reward takes time. Realizing the consequences, however, is all part of healing. It gets better with time.