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Topic : 08/24 The Family Cult

Number of Replies: 262
New Messages This Week: 0
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Created on : Friday, September 30, 2005, 03:30:22 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1

(Original Air Date: 10/03/05) Imagine growing up in a cult where you are forced to have sex with strangers -- when you’re as young as 5. Dr. Phil talks to people who escaped the group known as the Children of God, and need help moving on. Meet a daughter who says she can’t forgive her father for the years of painful abuse she suffered at the hands of this cult. How can she reconnect with her dad and start trusting again? Plus, China and her husband, John, are building a new life after leaving the group, where they were forced to have sex with strangers when they were both underage. They’ve had a difficult time adjusting to the outside world, and China wonders if she should prosecute her parents for abuse. What does Dr. Phil think? Talk about the show here.


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October 3, 2005, 8:22 am CDT

I know that woman

Quote From: jazzdiva2

This is an unbelievable and remarkable young woman!  That she can go through living in the cult with a myriad of negative life experiences, yet now is so articulate and able to voice her disagreement and disappointment is a testament to the resilience of the human spirit, and how her unwavering intention to get over this is leading her out.  I am so very impressed by her.  What a show of strength!  My prayers and very best are with her.

 I know that woman and I can't say my upbringing was any different than hers. I know though that she was doing alright until the death of her brother. It's tragic that he died but she cannot continue to blame the death of her brother on the Family.  

  It is always sad to lose someone who you love so dearly, but life must go on and we must find closure.  

  My life hasn't been a bed of roses but I have found that with a little bit of perseverance and hard work you can succed and really go places.  

  China, I wish you the best and pray that you will find peace! I knew your brother well and he was always was a real nice guy. RIP Abe.  

October 3, 2005, 8:23 am CDT

Comment on Today's Show

Many "Christian" organizations fall prey to lifestyles that allow abuse.  Unfortunately the groups allow themselves to become so closed off to society that they cannot see how they allow for more and more selfish rights until they have lost the true morals that they wanted and claimed to stand for in the beginning. 

Christians all over the globe are still of the mind, "Spare the rod, and spoil the child."  Unwittingly they are beating their children and causing mental and physical damage. 

It is groups like this that attracts the attention of everyone and they talk about "those people" when they should be looking next door or in their own homes. 

Abuse of any kind is wrong.  Discipline can be found without beating a child with a belt or a hand.  Sexual abuse is the sickest of all.   

David Berg was a sick individual.  I can believe that not everyone in this group allows this to go on in their own homes, but if they are a member of this group and if they are aware of the problems they should think twice about what company they are keeping and what type of message they are sending to the world when they say I'm a member of this group. 

I am now an atheist and I am glad I am out of the controlling family that I grew up in for years.   



October 3, 2005, 8:31 am CDT

Dear Jim,

Quote From: jlamattery

I am Jim, the father who appears in this show.  I did not abuse my daughter and  I am actively pursuing those who did through both an FBI and IRS investigation into The Family International.  This is a pursuit that I will never retreat from, and it is one of the reasons that I appeared on the show.  I joined The Family at the age of seventeen in 1970, and left the group with my wife and oldest daughter, Kerenina,  in 1975.  Unfortunately, my daughter's mother rejoined the group in 1975, and gave birth to Kristi, who also appears on the show, after I had left the group.  Although I did not witness any abuse of children during my tenure with The Family, I was unsuccessful in convincing the divorce court that the group might use sex as a tool to gain membership, wealth, and protection, and consequently my daughters would be at risk.  I fought long and hard for sole and separate custody of both children and before the divorce was finalized, my ex-wife kidnapped both daughters and fled to Thailand where their physical, sexual, and psychological abuse began.  This show will hopefully illuminate some of the problems that not only my daughter, but thousands of other young adults have had in reconnecting with their extended families in efforts to stabilize their lives with education, careers, and personal relationships once they have escaped the confines of The Family International.  You can visit my website at for more information. 

Once again I must say that I am completely astounded that you come here to rattle on about your work when the first words out of your mouth should have been related to how you and your daughter are doing and whether or not if you are giving her the support she so desperately needs.   


I feel for your daughter and anyone who has been abused, yet that part of her life is over, she needs closure and I hope you will help her attain it by being a father, confidante, and supporter, instead of a journalist and writer out for a story or to make yourself look important.  


You did your best and fought to get custody but now that she's here you seem more interested in her story than in her personally. 


I wish you both luck and I hope that you will return to counseling with your daughter and create a bond that I feel both of you need desperately. 




October 3, 2005, 8:47 am CDT

Reply to Your Tranquilized Propaganda

Quote From: fruittune   


    Check this out! I thought this was interesting.  





Whether you understand it or not, alot of us came from where you are now. We all produced the same sweet propaganda, whether it was out witnessing or directly to the media, whenever we were in the spotlight. Do you know something else?--We were the same age, and even younger than alot of you are now. 


From your post, it seems like you never have rebuke sessions. It sounds like your life is the typical perfect lifestyle, like we all used to brainwash the public with. What I find hilarios, is that you guys' best PR teams make a fool out of themselves on television, especially Claire Borowick! 


If your life is so much the dream the public wish it was, I'm happy for you, and wish you the best. However, I support the people who are on today's show. They suffered alot, and I think that Maria and Peter owe them a confession of Maria's guilt, Peter's guilt, and that the top leaders who have been singled out as abusers themselves should turn themselves in to the police. 


If the people on the show have given specific names of their abusers to law enforcement, to press charges, I think the people in question should turn themselves into police. 





October 3, 2005, 9:25 am CDT

The Family Cult

Hearing about what these people went through, I must say how blessed I am to have not gone through something so horrid and awful. I feel sorry for both men and women. I applaud you for getting out.
October 3, 2005, 10:06 am CDT

10/03 The Family Cult

1st I want to say that I think the details of these situations are absolutely HORRIFIC.  2ndly I want to say that I do not think that any organization is corrupt in itself for the most part, BUT that it is corrupt because a CORRUPT LEADER takes over and starts changing and making rules.  I think in any religion it is a power pyramid.  And people attempt to get to be the boss by brown nosing.  And if a BAD GUY gets to be in charge that is why you have what was on the show today.  It is not the religious organization itself... But this is the 1st time I ever heard of this particular religion.
October 3, 2005, 10:13 am CDT

Previous member of a cult

I was entrenched in a cult for nearly 20 years and I have been out for about 8 years. Those of us with this experience are the only ones who understand how deeply this affects a person. Having a very intense deep seated belief system and then leaving it--I tell you, though it is a relief to be out, one feels pretty lost. Usually in a cult you are exclusively involved in its members and thus cut off from society. Coming out, you feel very lost and you have to start all over, which is difficult as an adult. I was in a cult from jr. high to my early 30's. I did not have a normal development as a person due to my involvement. Now I have to make up the lost ground and it is pretty tough.
October 3, 2005, 10:30 am CDT

the family cult

I had a male friend. Real sweet sensitive  not sure what his future is going.  He join the child of god in th early 70 s.  He came back to his parents house quiet withdrawn. He sat in his room reading the Bible. No one could reach him.  One day  he shot himself and fell in the river. Joel has been died for 35 years. He was so special and I will never forget him. 
October 3, 2005, 10:52 am CDT

To April the cult member in Mexico

 April, Have you ever checked out how your other cult members really live. I have.

My sister is in The Family too. She joined over 30 years ago and has a bunch of kids from a bunch of different dads. They live in the northeastern part of the US now and although they do "missionary work" most of their days are made up of more mundane stuff. Like collecting welfare and food stamps, ballooning (dressing up like a clown and making balloon animals for donations), and provisioning (getting donations of goods from businesses by telling them they are donating to missionary work). My sister says she does missionary work by "giving encouragement" to poor people in her town. April, my sister is a poor person too. She spends more time struggling to survive than I do at my job!  Every month is is a scramble to make the rent payment and often they go several months behind on the rent. Sometimes I have seen them run out of food before the end of the month. Their cars break  down often. They have no health insurance and the kids don't go to school. My sister homeschools the kids when she finds the time but I have kids the same age as hers and it's easy to see they are way way behind where they should be.

My sister complains that the neighbors turn them in to Child Protective Services every where she moves. But she says she doesn't care about that. She says she gets secret information from Jesus that health care and education are a waste of time because the world is ending soon so why bother.....

So April, what I want to know is: who's going to pay for the education and support of my sister's kids when they grow up with little useful education, poor health and no social skills because another of Karen Zerby's "prophesies" about the world ending in 2016 turns out to be wrong? All the other prophesies about the world ending have been wrong! Or didn't you notice?
October 3, 2005, 12:12 pm CDT

they NEED the REAL God!!!

This is HORRENDOUS!!! Dr. Phil-- THANK YOU SOOOOO MUCH for going out to Colorado Springs and getting the police involved!  I can't believe all of this blasphemous cult stuff going on.   I'm a born again Christian, and I know God does NOT contend to any of that stuff they are doing---- they claim to be doing it for Jesus and for God---- that behavior is NOT God's will and He will judge them for that on their judgement day--- Hopefully that will help any of you who might have gone through that horrible stuff.   To know that God cares and loves you, and that you don't have to be controlled by those horrible experiences because God will take care of that.    


I just hope those people get the REAL Jesus into their hearts and repent of all their sin before it's too late for them.   


Praying for them, and anyone who has suffered at their hands.  

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