Recovery: Preconference Workshop

This workshop is for former members of cultic groups only.
Workshop for Former Members of Cultic Groups and Relationships 

Ann Stamler, Coordinator 

Preconference Orientation for Former Members (Wednesday, 3 – 5 pm)

This session is an opportunity for former members of cultic groups or relationships to prepare for the emotional and practical demands of the coming conference. For those who have experienced the psychological manipulation of abusive leaders or partners, making choices may be a new experience. The abundance of sessions and of participants at the conference may feel overwhelming. Former members have also been indoctrinated to feel we must “be up to” any task, and feel guilty about taking a break, seeking help, attending to our emotional, psychological or physical needs. We may also have difficulty interacting with people we regard as authorities. At this session, facilitators who are themselves former members and/or mental health professionals will discuss practical and emotional challenges former members face, including making choices, triggers, setting boundaries, interacting with people we regard as authorities, and taking care of ourselves. 
Open to all former members

Preconference Orientation for Second Generation Former Members (Wednesday, 7 – 9 pm)

This session will deal with some of the same general subjects as the afternoon orientation, but with a focus on the issues faced by people born or raised in cultic groups or relationships. Often we have not learned how to socialize comfortably or interact with people outside our group. We may feel guilty exploring subjects not condoned by a leader, and listening to beliefs different from those in which we were raised. Simple tasks such as asking directions, setting our own schedule, or seeking advice may be daunting. We may also have difficulty interacting with people we regard as authorities. At this session, facilitators who are themselves second generation former members and/or mental health professionals will discuss practical and emotional challenges SGAs members face, including making choices, triggers, setting boundaries, interacting with people we regard as authorities, and taking care of ourselves. The session will also be an opportunity to meet other people born or raised in cultic groups or relationships, and form connections that may be helpful throughout the conference. 
Open to second generation former members