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What is Religious Abuse?

What is Religious Abuse?

Religious abuse is directly tied to an abuse of power and often a use of fear tactics. 

The most common forms of religious abuse are sexual abuse, emotional abuse, financial abuse, physical abuse, and/or verbal abuse. 

DID Being Treated as Possession 

DID has a history of being treated – often by deeply religious people – as possession. People with DID have shockingly often (and not just in the past – to this day) been subject to extremely traumatic events and rituals such as forced exorcisms. They have been treated as if they have the devil or a demon inside of them that must be expelled, when – in reality – oftentimes, they simply are traumatized and are being actively re-traumatized by this. 

Many people additionally have been abused through the church, so this traumatization can be even worse if, in childhood, they were abused in the church, leading to them forming DID, and now they’re being abused in the church because they have DID and being told it’s demonic possession. 

Resources for Survivors of Religious Abuse

  • SNAP: Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
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