Educational Workshops/Support Sessions for Survivors of Cults, High Demand Groups, Coercive or Abusive Relationships (Including Those Born and Raised in Them)
Successful, Small, Personalized, and Secure Zoom Sessions Since 2010!
Alternate Saturdays, 10:00 AM to 12:00 Noon Pacific Time
(Please note the time zone)
Upcoming Workshop: April 30th, May 14th (Cancelled), May 28th June11th, and So On...
Facilitator: Colleen Russell, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (LMFT) and Certified Group Psychotherapist (CGP), Licensed since 1992, Area of Expertise in Cult or High Demand Group and Relationship Education and Recovery, Trauma, and Loss; also a Former Member
About 10-15 Participants Each Session, $50 Per Session, $100 for Two with No Refunds. If you inform me that you can't attend a session 48 hours ahead of time, I can forward your payment to the next workshop session. Limited scholarships for the workshops are available.
These are educational workshops, not therapy groups.
Educational, supportive, interactive, offering participants opportunities to address issues you want to explore and which are relevant to your life. We gain support and learn from each other. Topics participants choose to discuss include:
- Cult or High Demand Group Definitions, Dynamics, Structure
- Characteristics of the Cult or Dominant Partner (Observed Narcissistic/Anti-Social Traits)
- Thought Reform/Brainwashing/Grooming
- Healthy and coercive relationships -- all kinds, including family, partner, friends, work
- Who Am I? Identity Negotiation Prior, During, Post-Cult
- Boundaries, Communication, Personal Rights --and Other Tools for Living
- Betrayal Trauma and Betrayal Blindness
- Anxious/Secure Attachment Styles
- Communication with Parents or Other Family Members Still Involved -- or Still Maintaining the Beliefs
- Accessing Social Services
- Conflict Resolution/Win-Win Negotiation
- Intimacy and Trust
- Anger & Other Emotions
- Trauma and PTSD -- Symptoms, Triggers, and How to Navigate Through Them
- Traumatizing Narcissists -- in families, relationships, groups, cults
- Traumatic Bonding
- How to be Less Vulnerable to Authority
- What Former Members have found Helpful to Recovery
- The Most Vulnerable Members -- Those Born &/or Raised
- Individual Strengths -- Surviving Traumatic Situations
- Rules and Dynamics of Dysfunctional Systems -- in Families, Relationships, Workplaces and Other Groups
- Ambiguous loss and Disenfranchised Grief
- Disconfirming Inaccurate, self-limiting beliefs from ideologies, family of origin, other relationships as key to recovery via better outcomes than before
- Physical and Psychological Process of Leaving and Recovery
- Self-Esteem and Self-Care
- Personal Goals, Challenges and Successes
Based on participant's requests and needs, each workshop will focus on specific topics participants address for in-depth exploration. I provide resources the day before the workshop to assist in the discussion and learning opportunity.
1)If I don't know you, please send me an email: [email protected] so I can review your brief history of how you were affected by coercive control in a cult or high demand group or relationship for screening purposes. Please let me know the workshop you would like to attend. I will review your history and notify you with a welcome email. You can make a payment of $50 for one session or $150 for three to reserve your place via this website "Make a Payment" on the menu with PayPal or credit card. Please state your name clearly when you pay. If you cannot attend a workshop you've paid for, let me know at least 24-hours in advance so someone else may attend. Refunds are not given except in certain situations and your payment can be forwarded to another workshop.
2) The day before the scheduled workshop, I will email PowerPoint resources including the workshop guidelines for your review.
3) On the morning of the workshop, I'll send you a secure link that will take you into the Zoom workshop/support session. Please arrive 5 minutes early so we can start on time.
Workshop Participants' Comments:
"The workshops are always so helpful! I get so much out of the materials you send and our discussion. I like the structure."
"In hearing others' experiences in a different cult, dysfunctional family or relationship, I'm learning more about my experience in the cult and dysfunctional family."
"I very much appreciated being in the group. Realizing I’ve been in a cult/high demand group for the last 47 years is new information for me... I feel so raw and lost and confused and also good. Listening to peoples experiences is helpful."
"I think I am learning in the group. It's as if we are all wrestle with the same things and imagine writing and fighting and teaching and prosecuting and maybe even erasing it from ourselves. But I think the way forward is with connection and probably just one intimate long term connection. One person who gets it, accepts us and loves us and accepts our love. I don't really think anything else matters more than human connection. We are social. It nurtures our brains. And I like the group because its a place where we see ourselves in others. Thank you for the group"
"I've had individual therapy, but after attending my first workshop I realize that what I need now is learning from the group of former members."
"These workshops are really helpful to me in understanding and processing my experiences in a cult."
"I don't feel like such an alien, and can openly talk to others who understand."
"I'm learning how others have survived 'outside' -- and how I can survive."
"I wasn't aware until listening to others in the workshop and reading the educational material you provide, how many relationships I've been involved in that have been coercive."
"These workshops have given me invaluable insights."
"Thanks again for last week's meeting. It was really powerful."
"By having compassion for others in the workshop, hearing their stories, I'm gaining compassion for myself."
"It's a relief in these workshops that we're not passively listening to an 'expert' -- we are all experts of our own experience."
I use secure Zoom with added security. If you decide to participate, you will need a video camera and speakers for your laptop or desktop and a one-time download of the Zoom app . Some participants use their IPhones but this is a smaller view. I will send resources regarding the workshop prior to it for your review and reflection. Downloading Zoom is easy and free, a one-time process.