When today's guest Jonathan was 15, he felt lost, alone, and unable to voice the feelings and thoughts that were troubling him. The domestic roles he was fulfilling as a young man and full-time student, including caring for his ill mother while navigating his parent's divorce, eventually led to him seeking help from a therapist. This therapist gained Jonathan's trust by appearing to understand and relate to him. Jonathan did not have the experience to know that the healthy boundaries of a therapeutic relationship were never actually there.
From the beginning, this therapist used Jonathan's vulnerabilities to manipulate his emotions, and to control his relationships with his family and friends in order to isolate him and then insert himself and his wife into those roles. After 11 years of being manipulated, even being made to feel responsible for his therapist's life and personal needs, Jonathan was able to find a way out.
In this second part of Rachel's conversation with Jonathan, he continues his emotional and powerful story of being trapped in a long-term abusive relationship with a controlling therapist and his wife. Rachel and Jonathan discuss the significant red flags of this relationship including the therapists' lack of professional boundaries and expectations of secrecy. Jonathan takes us through his mindstate as he finally reaches his breaking point and escapes the torturous relationship after more than a decade.
Before You Go: Rachel explains why manipulators will often do everything possible to keep their victims' doubt at bay. She explains the importance of doubt as a safety net that can be key to maintaining healthy critical thinking skills that can illuminate the path to freedom from their control.
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