Currently in Love Has Won and Questioning?

Thinking Man on Couch

Are you currently wrestling with whether or not to stay involved with Love Has Won?  Do you often wonder if you are in good standing with others in the group?  Do they accuse you of things they have done or currently do?  Have you grown increasingly more concerned for your safety or the safety of others?  Read on to learn more about gaslighting and other unhealthy behavior patterns.

Start by asking yourself the following questions:

  • Does LHW answer my questions without becoming judgmental? 

  • Do they encourage me to maintain relationships with those outside the group? 

  • Do they inspire me to think for myself and build up my self-esteem?

 

To quote Roseanne Henry, a seasoned therapist who has worked with cult survivors for more than twenty five years, "people don’t join cults. They get involved in groups they are led to believe represent these high ideals." So how then can a person tell if the group with which they are involved is unsafe?  Fortunately, many experts have documented the pattern of behavior exhibited by unsafe groups versus those which are safe and healthy.  Using information collected by the Executive Director of International Cultic Studies Association (ICSA), Michael D. Langone, Ph.D., Dare to Doubt organized a list of questions to help "analyze for yourself whether you may have cause for concern based on common patterns found in cultic groups."  Some of these questions include:

  •  Does the group feel they’re on a special mission to save humanity? Do they see their leader as a special being or an avatar?

  •  Does the group have an us-versus-them mentality?

  •  Is the group preoccupied with bringing in new members and/or making money?

If you find yourself answering 'yes' to any of these questions, you owe it to yourself to do more research.  Visit Dare to Doubt's website to view the full list of questions adapted from Michael Langone, as well as Steve Hassan's Influence Continuum diagram.  This diagram compares constructive behaviors with destructive ones.  

Below, you will find documented behaviors of a SAFE group or leader, courtesy of The Cult Education Institute.

https://www.culteducation.com/warningsigns.html

 

          10 Signs of a SAFE group or leader:

  

  1. A safe group/leader will answer your questions without becoming judgmental and punitive.

  2. A safe group/leader will disclose information such as finances and often offer an independently audited financial statement regarding budget and expenses. Safe groups and leaders will tell you more than you want to know.

  3. A safe group/leader is often democratic, sharing decision making and encouraging accountability and oversight.

  4. A safe group/leader may have disgruntled former followers, but will not vilify, excommunicate and forbid others from associating with them.

  5. A safe group/leader will NOT have a paper trail of overwhelmingly negative records, books, articles and statements about them.

  6. A safe group/leader will encourage family communication, community interaction and existing friendships and not feel threatened.

  7. A safe group/leader will recognize reasonable boundaries and limitations when dealing with others.

  8. A safe group/leader will encourage critical thinking, individual autonomy and feelings of self-esteem.

  9. A safe group/leader will admit failings and mistakes and accept constructive criticism and advice.

  10. A safe group/leader will not be the only source of knowledge and learning excluding everyone else, but value dialogue and the free exchange of ideas.

A safe group will encourage family communication...
A safe group will not be the only source of knowledge and learning...

 

 

 

"Our 'Fresh Start Toolbox,' is loaded with resources and suggestions for individuals who have grown dependent on an unsafe group for their basic needs, and wish to become self-supporting."  There you will find a list of organizations specific to the Denver and Northern California areas, which offer basic necessities, employment and housing help, and heath care information. Many of these services are FREE and do not require an appointment. Additional resources are available in our Resource Directory!

Some find that when they are ready to leave Love Has Won, the process of moving on is difficult, and overwhelming, because they have very little money, belongings, and support.  Here are a few resources that might be able to help: