For the last few years I have tried on and off to put my past behind me. Some of this was because of guilt, shame or embarrassment, while at other times it was to only focus on positivity moving forward.
I keep rediscovering, though, that there are parts that are still left to be dealt with. Some of this happens internally, as in still processing it all and learning from the experiences, while other things have to be dealt with externally, such as sharing what I know in hopes to help other people as well.
I clearly can’t run from my past, yet it doesn’t have to define who I am today, either. It is what I make of it, and the results of what I do with those experiences internally and externally. This is why I wrote my books. Have You Told All? and Reconnection really go together to tell more of a complete story of about two decades of my life, including how I got sucked into Scientology, how I got out, how I helped bring justice for some of its victims, and how I continue to recover and move on with life.
Unfortunately, despite losing my desire to fight for a while, the fight isn’t over. Yes, the cult is shrinking and there is a ton of information that has come out in the past ten years or more, but it isn’t enough. People still need help, especially someone very close to me, and sharing my truth to help bring an end to the atrocities committed by this horrible organization is something I feel like I still need to do.
Fair Game Podcast
I was honored to be a guest on Leah Remini’s and Mike Rinder’s Fair Game podcast, and the episode goes live tonight at midnight. These two brave souls have worked tirelessly over the years, and their show Scientology and the Aftermath won two Emmy Awards (if you didn’t see it on A&E, now all three seasons are available on Netflix). Mike Rinder also gives some additional links and background information on his blog here.
There was so much to talk about that I think we barely scratched the surface. There obviously is a lot more detail in the books, and I encourage you to listen to other episodes of their podcast, watch their show in Netflix, and go back further to read Lawrence Wright’s book Going Clear and watch Alex Gibney’s Emmy-inning documentary of the same name on HBO.
Here is a quick thank you to them for graciously allowing me to contribute to their series.
Earlier this year, I was a guest on Rachel Bernstein’s Indoctrination podcast. She has recently been featured in the series produced by India Oxenberg about the NXIVM cult. Racheal is a therapist who has helped many people after leaving controlling groups like Scientology and NXIVM. Those episodes here below:
So What Have I Learned?
I have accomplished a lot since I left, and I still feel like I’m just getting started. I am entering my seventh phase of seven year cycles now, and I keep learning things about myself and the world around me every day. I think that is the key, to never stop exploring, and to not be afraid of who you are today. I have shared a lot of this in my videos and my blog posts here, as well as my own podcast called Finding Your Way. I will continue to do so, and I will continue to try and help other people who are looking for ways to embrace their past, end much of their suffering, and move forward with new meaning and purpose, because they don’t have to be mutually exclusive.