Recovery from Church, Institutional and Cult Abuse

Recovery from Church, Institutional and Cult Abuse (pdf)


The above report is designed for three key stakeholders: agencies involved in prevention and intervention of institutional, church and cult abuse; practitioners working directly with individuals who have experienced a range of abusive group systems; and ex-members of abusive groups and their families.

The report is divided into two parts:

Part (i) the common characteristics of abusive groups and how they operate, characteristics of abusive group leaders, personal and life-stage characteristics of members upon entry into an abusive group, and common post-group symptoms experienced by individuals who have exited.

Part (ii) addresses the state of research on treatment efficacy for ex-members of abusive groups. The literature review discusses common treatment approaches and outcomes. Treatment is divided into two types: individual and group. The structure and outcome literature for both individual and group treatment is covered. Considerations for treating therapists and group facilitators are outlined.

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