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Apr 10, 2012

Processing Unrealized Pain

painDarin talks with Aimee about some issues that have popped up in his life in the last two years. After being out of the institutional church world for nearly nine years, Darin has started developing all the signs of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. He’s been having nightmares almost five nights a week. So many of us have been injured deeply from our church experience. Some of the deepest wounds don’t expose themselves until years after the fact. Spiritual abuse and manipulation has more of a devastating effect on people then we even realize. Sometimes outlasting an injury is more important than getting a healing from one. You’ll enjoy this heart felt conversation. 

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    Darin and Aimee Your broadcast was most appreciated. You are right Aimee...there are many out there who are going through the same thing and we wonder how to process it all. For me, I left the church in 1991 and so it has been a very, very long time in dealing with the umpteen wounds and screwups, etc. with the hope of being consistently whole - operative word being "consistent" Be that as it may, thanks for your honesty and being open. You model for us what it means to be vulnerable and hence poised to be appreciated and loved. So, good stuff as usual and many thanks for BEING REAL! Later. j.

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    thank you. Many have come out of the I.C. after being abused. Healing always comes at the hand of our loving Father and His mighty Spirit. Once again, your words and Amiee's are like water in a dry and thirsty land.

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    Darin: I owe much of my sanity to have found your blog first and later your podcasts. It takes lots of courage to do what the four of you do: to be vulnerable in such a public way! As far as PTSS, I don't get nightmares and night heatflashes anymore, but I did for a number of years after I left. The one thing that I can still not handle is when someone comes to me to preach to me, especially people I know but dont know my story. In those instances I feel that my veins are going to burst, my pulse raises to in the 130s and I can't fall asleep that night, etc. So far I haven't figured out how to get rid of that strong reaction that I know is part of my PTSS.

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    Geez, just because someone stands at a pulpit and tells you every week that God thinks you’re a piece of shyt and you need to try harder, and then takes ten percent of your money for this helpful advice, is that really a reason to be stressed? Maybe what you’re experiencing is not PTSS, but the high you get from a close encounter with really good marketing.

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    I could not sleep after listening to your discussion.I lay asking "Why?" and "Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive others who trespass against us" kept going through my head. "But Lord they did not do anything wrong." "Remember the part where Jesus said even those who only think are sinning....."(I think he was talking about adulrty.) Could it be our little feelings of disappointment,irritation,or supposition that causes us to suffer so? PLEASE do not think I am pointing fingers. I am also seeking answers as there are three men in my family who have suffered from PTSS. Two came out of compulsory army training completely shattered. That was twenty years ago and they still suffer from depression. The other was my husband who lost his job and had PTSS twenty years later long after retirement. He fund Christian Meditation most helpful. It got him off all heart medication as well.Please discuss this again. Thank you so much for sharing. It's so helpful.

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    Oh yeah, I guess instead of looking like I was just talking out of my Janus, I should have included some references. REFERENCES 1. My thoughts; issue 4, 2012 2. Check out some of the hard cores in this trailer:

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    Thanks for your openness about this subject. Just last night I had a nightmare about something that happened a long time ago. I've been outside the box for about nine years and every once in a while something comes up that I hadn't thought about in years, then it seems to leave after a while, then something else shows up. I hope it's a healing process. Love the honesty!

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    I want to be free, but my mind still races with thoughts like...maybe I should try again, maybe I just need to open my heart, maybe I'll really burn in hell, maybe they're right and I'm wrong, there must be something there, look at all the people that show up, why can't i fit in there anymore?, I don't understand, I want to understand, and on and on and on. I've been out three years, breaking free has not been so easy for me.

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    Matt Logan

    It is called religious trauma by therapists. Very real. I know that I suffer from it, but have made great strides in getting free of it. Part of that, in my opinion is letting go of the insanity of shame. One book that has helped me is called Healing the Shame that Binds You.

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    Thanks Matt! I have requested the book from the public library. I really want to feel better.

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    Darin Hufford

    Thanks Matt. I think my situation was a little bit different from the average Christian who was spiritually manipulated and put under fear week after week. I didn't buy into their twisted, condemning theology EVER. I knew they were all full of it from day one. I just spent 5 years being heckled, hated and beaten up by those who were sure I was a heretic in business with the devil. I think all those years of looking over my shoulder took a toll on me. It was never about shame for me because I knew His heart wasn't like that. In my dreams I'm always trying desperately to get out of the church before anyone sees me. Just the thought of setting foot in that building makes me physically sick. Hey, I used to know a Matt Logan. ARE YOU HIM???? If so - I miss you and would love to catch up.

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    Sorry everyone for being such an insensitive jerk re this sensitive podcast and related comments. ps; the trailer I referred to is still worth a peak (it's an upcoming documentary on hell - which is kinda related to PTSD)..

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    My dad is a Vietnam Vet who suffers from PTSD. A few years ago had dinner with all us grown children to explain some of his lifetime and recently onset symptoms. I was absolutely speechless in realizing that though I have never been in a military situation, I have suffered many of the same symptoms. A couple of my friends and I call it "Post Traumatic Religious Stress Syndrome". Incidentally my dad was a lifetime pastor in the conservative Christian world. Though he may disagree, I believe he suffers from the religious version as well. I consider myself a free believer though I still attend church services with my family (don't buy into most of it). However, there are times when I have had to leave the service because of the PTRSD.

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    Darin Hufford

    JL I appreciate your comment. I wanted to let you know that about 1/2 of the Free Believers I know still attend church. Being a Free Believer isn't about leaving church. It's a person who knows the truth about God's heart and doesn't rely on church to carry them. That's all:-) Blessings.

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    Darin. Thank you so much for sharing this and being so authentic. I'm in a season, after having come so far, I have hit a brick wall. I'm still functional but sad, heartbroken, and both Steve and I are having nightmares. My doctor wants me to see a psychiatrist and work on meds - I've already done counseling which was good. But I just think I'm perhaps grieving some more? Have gained enof foundation in God's love to look at some things so I can let them go? But yea - 15 years out of denomination where we served for 21 years, 8 years since last attending a building. And I have the same questions - why now? What is happening? I've felt like a failure . . . but maybe when we seek God's heart for healing we don't realize the process that will be involved in getting there and this is just like part of the treatment. Chemotherapy can kill cancer but most people get super sick from the chemo before they get better. Anyways I am immensely comforted by your sharing. I love you.

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