chapter  Two
17 Pages

“An evil cradling”? Cult practices and the manipulation of attachment needs in ritual abuse

ByRachel Wingfield Schwartz

The survivors of ritual abuse and mind control that will talk about over the course of this Conference grew up within an evil cradling; within families and cults who set out to make it impossible for them to ever escape; impossible for them to ever break the psychological bonds with their abusers, bonds carefully welded within a cocoon of torture and programming. In attachment terms, Jodi was presenting with classic features of disorganized/disorientated infants. She moved in and out of seemingly contradictory states, both in sessions and in relation to her mother. Longing for contact could be followed by becoming frozen or frightened when the contact became available. The early months were dominated by continuing intense shifts in states, the room drenched in fear, a sense of immanent violence pervading the sessions, with intermittent periods of us both being drawn in to calm, hypnotic, trance-like states.