Monday, March 4, 2013

Scientology and PTSD


Almost everyone I have known that has been in a cult has PTSD in some form or another.  Just about everybody that has been in Scientology has told me about PTSD symptoms.  But Scientology claims to cure PTSD.

"Rather than mask the symptoms of the disorder or attempt to handle it using theories developed by studying rats, Dianetics therapy uses effective techniques based on the case histories of thousands of hours of therapy.  In fact, some of the earliest “patients” which were addressed by L. Ron Hubbard in his researches were fellow veterans of World War II.  L. Ron Hubbard found effective techniques that could be learned by anyone to handle anxiety, stress and being “stuck” in traumatic incidents.  It is also an effective means to address the psychosomatic effects that are caused by past and present trauma."

And from DMSMH:

"The traumatized soldier in the CNN article mentioned above is planning to go to school for 4 years to become a therapist in hopes that she’ll be able to help other people with their stress. However, in a matter of an afternoon, she can be trained in Dianetics techniques which will permanently eradicate the effects of such stress and leave the person alert, and ready to carry out their life with sanity and happiness."

Every Ex-Scientologist I have ever spoken with has at least 4 of the following symptoms:

Symptoms of PTSD: Re-experiencing the traumatic event
Intrusive, upsetting memories of the event
Flashbacks (acting or feeling like the event is happening again)
Nightmares (either of the event or of other frightening things)
Feelings of intense distress when reminded of the trauma
Intense physical reactions to reminders of the event (e.g. pounding heart, rapid breathing, nausea, muscle tension, sweating)
Symptoms of PTSD: Avoidance and numbing
Avoiding activities, places, thoughts, or feelings that remind you of the trauma
Inability to remember important aspects of the trauma
Loss of interest in activities and life in general
Feeling detached from others and emotionally numb
Sense of a limited future (you don’t expect to live a normal life span, get married, have a career)
Symptoms of PTSD: Increased anxiety and emotional arousal
Difficulty falling or staying asleep
Irritability or outbursts of anger
Difficulty concentrating
Hyper-vigilance (on constant “red alert”)
Feeling jumpy and easily startled

Dr. Margaret Thaler Singer, Ph.D. says:

"After exiting a cult, an individual may experience a period of intense and often conflicting emotions. She or he may feel relief to be out of the group, but also may feel grief over the loss of positive elements in the cult, such as friendships, a sense of belonging or the feeling of personal worth generated by the group's stated ideals or mission. The emotional upheaval of the period is often characterized by "post-cult trauma syndrome""

"I escaped from an intimidating and dangerous cult—Scientology—on October 28, 2009. The days and months that followed throughout the past two years have been an ordeal I would not wish on anyone."

And Margery Wakefield says:

For several weeks I was confined to a room on the second floor of the hotel. Meals were brought to my room. One evening I was told to pack. The next morning I was escorted to the airport in Tampa where I was told to pick any place out of the state of Florida, and to go there. I was being given a one-way ticket. I was in shock. I knew what this meant. I was being "offloaded" (Scientology's form of exile). I was no longer welcome in Scientology, which had been my world for twelve years.I flew back to Wisconsin, where my parents were living. My father met me at the airport. Soon I was sitting in the living room of my parents' home, staring at the snow drifting outside the window, trying to assemble my fractured sense of reality into some kind of coherent and workable mental order. For the first week, all I could do was work a huge jigsaw puzzle of Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany. Slowly fitting the pieces together seemed to correspond to an internal process taking place in my mind. I was still unable to think.I noticed that when my father turned on the television, there were periods of time when I would stare at the screen, yet the words of the announcer were in a foreign language. I knew that was strange, because my father was understanding it just fine. My relationship to reality was tenuous for a long time. I had periods of "floating" when I experienced a strange feeling of being disconnected from everything around me, and felt blissfully apart from it all. The bliss was short-lived. Feelings of terror soon emerged as I began to deal with my predicament. I had been exiled from Scientology and would probably be declared "SP" (Suppressive Person), a death sentence not just for this short lifetime, but for trillions of years to come. It was a scary thought. For the first few weeks, I couldn't go anywhere by myself. I felt too fragile. Even walking around the block by myself became a major challenge. The sudden and unexpected rejection by the cult had caused a complete loss of psychic cohesion that would take months to rebuild. I was, to be blunt, a "basket case."

Scientology has a lot of nerve to claim that it cures PTSD.  Do not fall for their PR campaigns.

If you have a story to tell, please share it.  Thanks for dropping by today.  I hope you come back soon.


  1. THANK YOU, ROBERT, for keeping this most serious subject out in the "Public-Forum", such as this! {{{HUGS}}} to You, my dear Friend. What you have been, and 'ARE' doing, will help many :-) <3

  2. Scientology has a lot of nerve, period.It's why they have their tentacles into all walks of life.I like reading your posts, Robert, they are so very spot on. Today I have been decorating, something I used to love to do, but not so much these days. It's not quite like digging a hole and planting something pretty, but it all helps to squash those terrors away. It's making yourself do it that's the hardest bit.I had a totally cult free life for years, so why did it have to all come back? I call it Hubbard's revenge because I was not compliant.

    One of these days and hopefully in the not to distant future I hope to have a totally cult free day, and when that day comes you will be one of the first to know about it.

    Just for the record, I suffer at least 11 of those symptoms you mention, periodically. Sometimes I do a lot better than others. As a contrast, I have a friend who was in Belson and they always go down hill round about poppy day.It's called SURVIVAL, but it can be a very fractured survival depending on what you suffered.From my own stand point I can relate far more to my friend that was in Belson than I can to many supposed ex scientologists or Indies as they like to call themselves.I know Miscavige is evil, but go back 40 years and see the real deal.

    1. As always Sharone, you hit the nail on the head. Thank you so much for reading my posts and your comment.

    2. Thanks for the comment post, Sharone RE: "It's making yourself do it that's the hardest bit"

      For me too, the hardest think is MAKING myself do things, but I am grateful afterward
      when I feel better. {{{HUGS}}} to Robert & Sharone - - two people I cherish and admire <3

  3. I have studied Scientology, but also Theology and Psychology 10 years. I do not know what you experience , but hope you are alright, Margery Wakefield. I have been aware since 4. I pay attention, not only to other Scientologist but everyone. My bible says, Trust God and I do.
    Be Blessed