The death of Alexander Jentzsch

This is the recent story of the death of Alexander Jentzsch, the son of the President of the “church of Scientology”.

Incredibly sad…

From The Village Voice:

 

De La Carriere was not invited to that service because she had been excommunicated by Scientology in 2010 for speaking publicly about Heber’s treatment. (She put on a memorial service of her own on Friday.) As a result of that excommunication — in church-speak she was “declared a suppressive person” — her own son, Alexander, was forced to “disconnect” from her. She had had no contact with him during the last two years of his life, and then was prevented from seeing her son’s body before it was cremated by Alexander’s wife, who is a Scientologist.

Rest in peace Alexander.

Being raised as a scientology child.

Surely the testament to the workability of a belief system/practice/”technology” is the real life consequences.

So looking back over my life now, the effects of 46 years of association with scientology beliefs has resulted in a wasteland of family connections and love. Surely those concepts are an exact opposite outcome to a practice that aims to ‘save the planet’ and make this world a better place? My story is by no means the only one. There are thousands of shattered families like mine, families who never had a chance really.

I was talking to my dad the other day, he is nearly 86 and once an “OT5”, as was my mum. He said, “I am the father of seven and I don’t understand why you can’t all get along.” Oh Dad, how simple is the explanation and how complex are the consequences!

The simple explanation is that love does not come into it. My parents took us all to another country to study scientology and then were too busy to have time for their large family. My siblings were often left to fend for themselves in many ways, as I was. I am sure this is the reason we are scattered all over the world now … we were just not raised to give family bonds any priority. My brother was sent to ‘the ship’ when he was 15, I was sent to the Sea Org in another city when I was 16 and pregnant. We all had to learn to fend for ourselves. My brother says that the Apollo crew became his family, with its loose morals and fierce authoritarian boundaries, and the consequences of that reverberate to this day.

This is the end result of an extended family in scientology – of the 4 children I gave birth to, only two are connected to me now, two have disconnected (one due to scientology and the second for other reasons only he understands). My parents are now elderly, my mother has dementia and my father is battling cancer, despite the decades of devotion to the tech. Because they live with a scientology family member in another state, I have no physical access to them. Yes, I could make a fuss and demand to see them, but they are in a delicate position. My father was discouraged from even being in contact with me by skype! (He is defying that though.) My ex-husband is still a scientologist and also has severe physical problems and of course does not talk to me because I am a critic, and this affects my children. My mother-in-law was also a scientologist until a few years before she passed away. Of my 5 siblings, there is only one who will talk to me on the phone now and then. The belief is that scientology has nothing to do with the disconnected one not talking to me! My grandparents and an aunt and uncle disowned my whole family when I was young, due to my father’s choice to take us to the UK for scientology. I never got to know my grandparents they passed away. And for the same reasons, I don’t know any of my cousins.

It’s a pretty sad state of affairs.

This is what one of my own children said in response to my question on how they felt scientology had affected them, even if they had not actually done any ‘services’:

“My personal thoughts on having it influenced my younger life ….

The words sad, ashamed, embarrassed come to mind! I feel helpless because it’s like one of awful dreams where you are trying to scream at someone but no sounds comes out. Me being the person screaming and the “scientologist” completely oblivious.
I hate having to try and explain it to people, it is all so intricate and like I said before, embarrassing.

I feel like I missed out on having a ‘normal’ childhood. I didn’t realise this for a long time but when I did I felt terribly robbed.

BUT there isn’t much i can do about it now and i completely accept that it wasn’t the parents fault (you and dad) really, because you at least became cluey enough and got the hell out of there before I was old enough to realise what it was all about. Because i can guarantee you that if you were still ‘in’ I would have been the cluey one!

The fact that our other family members are still in, is just, it’s….. depressing and the word embarrassing comes up again, but I feel embarrassed for them, not for me! And it’s a huge feeling of loss really …… the absolute main effect it has had on my life is that I have no family contact out of my immediate family.

It also took me a while to realise that that wasn’t my fault….. as a child you do not have the skills to maintain complicated extended family relationships… this is their job but it was never done.”

Here is a very relevant observation on how scientology children can feel:

“I wonder about the issue of trusting the outside world. By this I mean that the “us and them” mentality. The constant under-current of “we have the best answers, they are just wogs”. The outside world is to be regarded with suspicion – at best with mild contempt, at worst with complete disregard and disdain.

A child cannot integrate in a healthy way into life if they are raised to hold the outside world as either dangerous or inferior.

I saw scientology raised children who held a very condescending attitude to anyone that was not “in” scientology. Yes they were polite, yes they were pleasant but if you stepped back, these youngsters did not trust outsiders to be of any true value.

That extended out leaves the child with limited options as they enter adulthood. University professors are held in contempt; medicos – well let’s not even go there; non-scientologists are to be held as potential trouble sources as “they” don’t have the answers to life (the tech). Therefore the child/young adult makes limiting decisions and often remains well within the confines of the mentally controlling system. They join the SO, they join general staff, they work only for other scientologists – they can’t truly trust the outside world.”

Yes, that is so true. Normal childish emotional responses are frowned upon,  I remember many times that a argument was ended with “You’re just being banky!” This means it is all the reactive mind’s fault (bank) and you have no right to express opinions that go against the status quo. If a child is hurt or ill, the automatic responsibility it put back on them as “pulling it in”, in other words causing it. So you tend to grow up with the weight of the world on small shoulders,  and it is very difficult.
Another profound comment on the thread linked above:

“So the constant message you are getting is “You are not important.” I will meet the bare minimum required to keep you alive but anything else is secondary to what the group needs. “If we can get away from post for your solo in the school concert – great – otherwise stop being such a baby. You’ve blown up planets before. There will be no money there to help you go to university or get married or anything left behind once you die. Scientology has our love. Scientology has our attention. Scientology must always be fed and cared for. “

Please – don’t bring your children up within scientology….

PS – I just want to add a comment that I am not saying my parents didn’t/don’t love us all. They did, they just had blind spots, and unfortunately those huge blind spots caused damage that didn’t have to happen.

A scientology child – Sharone’s story

I watched a video today that is of a speech given at the recent Dublin Conference. The speaker is Sharone Stainforth, and her story is powerful and almost unbelievable. Raised within scientology from the age of 6, she spent 2 years about the scientology’s flagship the Apollo from 1967. The things she experienced and witnessed are a powerful testament to the bizarre and inhuman treatment children can receive within The Sea Organisation.

The fact that this happened decades ago is irrelevant, the same concepts of secrecy and abuse are still practiced and still as hidden.

I feel a special empathy for Sharone, as her life could so easily have been mine. In 1967 my family was scheduled to join the ship as well, as outlined in my story here.  Luckily our family didn’t make it that far, and although our life at Saint Hill in the UK was no bowl of cherries, it was not as bad as hers.

Thankyou for speaking out Sharone!

Break over…

I took a break from writing my story here and now I am ready to continue.

There has been a lot of media about the Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes divorce, the future of Suri and exposure of the reality of scientology lately. It reminded me why I started this blog … to try and put in words what it means to be raised within scientology. It is quite a difficult thing to do, as to this day I am still peeling the layers and finding those hidden concepts that warp one’s outlook.

I think that’s why I came to an abrupt halt when my story reached the years of raising my own children, as I had to think of not only the effect on them, both in the past and the present, but also unravel the effects on me.  My family is affected by the long term consequences of scientology on a daily basis and without the support of friends and the Ex Scientologists Message Board,  coming to grips with it would have been an almost impossible task.

More soon!

Freedom of choice to ‘disconnect’ in scientology

The following article describes the “freedom of choice” a scientologist faces when disconnection from family members is on the table. Very well stated!

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Yes, it IS a personal choice.

Just as it would be a personal choice if a man were standing with a gun against your child’s head, and said, “give me all of your money or I will pull the trigger”. Of course, you will hand over the money to save your child’s life, and while it IS A CHOICE, it is a pretty “heavily enforced” choice and has little “wiggle room”.

The same is true in Scientology. The choice is based on THIS outcome. Either disconnect from this person or YOU will also be 1) summarily declared and then 2) forcibly disconnected from all YOUR friends and relatives. Also, once you are declared you will 3) LOSE your “chance at eternal freedom”.

One must accept the absurd notion that Scientology can and does provide this “eternal freedom”, but we ARE dealing with True Believers here. The normal card-carrying Scientologist BELIEVES that the Church of Scientology holds the ONLY valid path to this freedom, and thus a THREAT of taking this away causes them REAL PAIN and SUFFERING (granted this is largely in their imagination).

So, the notion that it is a “free choice” is absurd. The card-carrying Scientologist is FORCED into disconnection OR ELSE. Or else what?

1. Be declared yourself and then be disconnected from all your friends and family.

2. Lose your chance at “eternal freedom” (a thing most members consider VERY VALUABLE).

The “easy simple choice” is an illusion, in that it is not at all of the same degree of insignificance such as on deciding whether or not to go to a movie tonight. This “choice” of “disconnecting” or not involves SEVERE repercussions, just like the guy holding the gun against your child’s head and demanding your money.

Scientology will try to “spin” the act of disconnection as a “personal choice” that it does not “force on members”, but the sad and sorry outcome is guaranteed if you “refuse” to make the “proper choice”. This is just more of Scientology doing what it does so commonly – Scientology redefines and misrepresents things in an attempt to trick people into agreeing with it.

Just as it really isn’t much of a “choice” whether to hand over your money to a thief holding a gun against your child’s head, it also is not much of a “choice” when one “decides” to “willingly disconnect” from some person to avoid the always resultant 1) declare, 2) disconnection, and 3) lose “of the Bridge” for YOU if and when you choose otherwise.

Free choice, free personal decision? My ass.

——————————————–

By Gadfly on Ex scientologists Message Board

A scientology school 1988 – 1990

A strange thing happened to me in late 1988. I had a dream, one that is still burned into my memory to this day, and I am not one for remembering dreams.  I won’t go into details, it concerned me being ‘judged’ by a panel of ‘judges’ that did not seem to have a solid form and they told me that I was “not doing what I should do or using my gifts”. It was very unsettling and I thought about this long and hard and came to the conclusion that somehow I needed to get back to “saving the planet” or something. No other explanation made sense, I didn’t feel that there was much I could do in my life as a wife and mother other than what I was already doing and I had no apparent alternative path in sight. I was enjoying my life and felt a guilty pleasure in it versus working on staff so I let the dream take it’s place in background unconsciousness and laughed off the thought of a dream telling me what to do.

I love gardening and worked hard at it growing wonderful food and flowers. One day a few days after the dream my right knee began to swell and hurt, I thought I had sprained it while gardening. It began to get worse and after seeing different doctors and specialists I had an exploratory operation to check on the cartilage. That wasn’t an answer though and my left knee began to swell as well.

Around this time I was approached to help start a scientology school in Melbourne, something that hadn’t ever been accomplished despite many attempts,. It was to be called the Phoenix school (later renamed Yarralinda).  A school appealed to me as I still believed in the “study tech” and I wanted my kids away from the threat of the drug society in public schools. The woman who was doing the set-up was from scientology standards, unacceptable. (A declared PTS Type III in the past, she had been kidnapped and babysat etc but that is another story.) She wanted a school both for her own daughter and for other scientology kids and knew that she faced enormous challenges in ‘making it go right’.  She knew I was more acceptable to the field, so wanted me to be the public face while she worked behind the scenes doing what was needed. She had recruited enough parents with young children to make it viable and now faced the challenge of making the school “legal” per education authority requirements.

So began one of the nightmare periods of my life. It was so bad that even now I am unable to organise memories into any kind of real sequence or make sense of the insanity that ensued. I also don’t want to name names right now as from where I am sitting years later I also know that the parents involved in the massive dramas and betrayals were acting from a view that they were protecting their children and every parent has that right and duty. The fact that those opinions and viewpoints mostly resulted from insane scientology policies is something many of them still need to understand and I hope one day those that are still “in” have that opportunity.

Long story short, this ‘unacceptable’ person doing the set-up became the focus of the parents and hounding her was more important than combined support for the school. It was inevitable per Hubbard policies and something she had anticipated. Within a short time, and within sight of the final steps to having the school accredited, it became a massive, unbelievable drama. The woman who started it finally took off, as she had always planned to do, and as her chosen replacement as Headmistress would not take on the job, it fell to me. (Later I was told that was exactly why I had been recruited, as the fall guy.)

Trying to do the right thing I asked ABLE (or Applied Scholastics, can’t remember which it was then) to become involved in sorting it all out. Represented by Martin Bentley, he sided with one set of parents, as the school was divided down the middle, approximately 5 families on each side.  Martin sided with the “other” set of parents and the original families (including mine) who started the school were kicked out, so I left and I put my children back in a normal public school. And in so many ways that was a tremendous relief.

During this period I had become very ill. What had started as a swollen knee turned into a raging deterioration of all major joints in my body. I saw many different doctors, specialists, chiropractors, naturopaths and no-one could diagnose or help with what was happening. I lost a great deal of weight and had sometimes unbearable pain in my hips particularly, but also knees, ankles, elbows and jaw. About the only thing I could eat was peanut butter sandwiches, and after about 6 months my legs actually started to turn outwards. I carried a little stool to sit on as I could barely walk, suffered fevers and nausea so badly I thought I was dying. Now this was while I was trying to help set up a school! As long as I was there every day, no-one seemed to care, and being a ‘make-it-go-right” sort of person, I just kept on. I remember taking a walk with Martin late one night, to discuss the school situation, in such agony I thought I would fall down in the street. He didn’t seem to notice, though on reflection I am sure he did and it may have been the deciding factor in which set of parents to support. I was obviously “PTS” and therefore not trustworthy.

After leaving the school I had time to try to find out what was wrong, I think that saved my life. I finally found the right specialist and X-rays showed that my hips had turned in their sockets by 20 degrees. Deterioration of the joints at this speed was unheard of, and the fever and raging illness was dangerous; he arranged for immediate hip replacements and medication to arrest the disease. It took a few years of constant medical attention and medication and almost dying in surgery but I finally recovered enough to walk again. It’s an unclassifiable inflammatory arthritis and it took me many, many years to finally accept that it was not due to “something I had pulled in” per scientology but rather genetics.

The fallout from the school saga continued for some months and the woman who started the school was Comm Evd (a scientology trial) and found guilty of everything under the sun except starting a school! I owe her no favours, but that does not sit well with me and is typical of the scientology “justice system”.

I feel sad that those lovely children I knew back then had to go through the reflected horrors of that time and have their own lives disrupted. I am very glad that my own children survived it ok, though with scars. After leaving the school I found that I had no “friends” anymore, no support or care in any way from any scientologist.

That was my real wake-up call and truly the moment I left scientology. Even though I paid it lip service for another decade and appeared to do the right things, I knew it did not hold the answers for me when basic humanity and compassion were foreign words. So back to my dream – it was in 1989-90 that I began the very slow path of finding my gifts and perhaps doing more of what I ‘should do’ – finding a happier life. I still question the dream’s meaning or wonder if it had any significance at all, yet events since then have led me on a path that does seem more aligned with who I am – I just needed to realise it would never come via scientology.

Recovering

How glad I am that I don’t have to deal with the vast “technology” that scientology has regarding being sick. The weight of blame and guilt it can add, also adds a great deal more stress to the healing process.

My surgery has been successfully completed and while recovering I will get started writing the next part – which funnily enough is about how my medical issues began.

A Billion Years Distilled

This is a poem my brother wrote some years ago about life in the Sea Org.

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I’ve stood my tallest, strong and keen
sharp navy blues on white unpressed
gilded with such pride of meagre rank
still thrilling inside grim-faced mask
all individual, part of elite group.
I am the team
I work flat out
I run, don’t walk
I know the score.
(This life grand Yvonne’s softly eyes endorsed
This adventure David’s manic glint engaged).

I’ve walked the gangplank, up to Flag
a bridge to total freedom? no,
to something better: duty, care
penultimate, right next to Source
where action is, and bellys young and fired.
to graduate
to make my mark
to give my all
to save the world.
(Surprise! my greeting is a Terri laugh,
precursor to a thousand smiles
Surprise! they’re just a hundred guys like me
with taste for action — vive la vie!)

I’ve met the Old Man, Commodore
(an LRH who fancied to be HRH)
my guru, chief, raison d’être
strong, inspiring, our own Thor
and only sometimes showing feet of clay.
He chatted, navigation stars
he yelled, a flub-catch leaving port
he messengered, all wee winged feet
he wrote, prolix! (but always fun in OODs)
(Oh Lafayette you weren’t exempt,
great power overpowers *all* egos
Oh David young Hermes indeed
fly close, fly high – wax melts, take heed!)

I’ve weathered fiercest ocean storms
a hurricane close to the rocks
“one more degree of list and she *will* keel”
grip-riding drenching high bow waves,
my ship my surfboard, I’m The King!
Hear rigging’s scream
feel dancing bolt (hung from a string)
see faces white
taste waves, my God the waves!
(Poor ‘Frank The Bucket’ – desparate!
and extra food for us who don’t turn green
Poor children of our legend be
those Sea Org members without sea).

I’ve worn a uniform with pride
‘on mission’ like Blues Brothers but
by orders of some lesser Gods
My ethics in, my confront high,
they’d look away but up their game when Sea Org came to town.
Get those stats up!
get back on-tech!
get regging, quick!
get off your ass!
(But Doreen did that knife-in-wall trick really work?
and Jill why did down stats return
and why were bridges all so burned?)

I’ve loved intensely, sardine style
when stress entreats and close feels like affinity
Too-easy touch can seem like need, and havingness means gettingness
We practiced well at kidding selves, were righteous stars like Hollywood
so honour waned, and family. The smorgasbord awaits.
Is she with him?
is he off lines?
is “flows” 2D?
is family and a life just wog-world dreams?
(No wasn’t scared of your Dad hon
but yes I knew he’d think me low
No I’ll never listen to Hey April
without heart-clutch about mischievous green eyes.)

I’ve done my time in serfdom, slaved in boiler-suited RPF
some higher up thought low of me, gold buttons making goldenrod
or dirty needle? dirty hands!
so here’s some hell – go janitor and rehabilitate!
Some MEST got rehabbed but not me, I know how POWs feel:
you fake Yes SIR through bitter sweat, and only cry at night.
No, I see rust!
no, no time off!
no case on post!
No! CSW is not OK.
(Ah irony of destiny
mete balance and such just deserts
Ah them that lightly “banish!” said
will soon enough be banish-ed).

I’ve stopped and thought, looked at my life, evaluated stats
Examined tech not Chinese style or ‘knowing’ it correct
In doubt looked at polarities, deciding paths to take
So walked down gangplank tenuous, goodbye?
but leaving friends, not enemies, ’cause now I understand.
Me? I’m just a graduate.
me? I’ve made my mark.
me? I gave my all (and more besides)
me? my world is everyone’s, not some’s (the ‘able’ rich).
(Father was it my fault that my life went thus so long?
well no but yes, we made it all go right
Father was there one thing I should now do different?
what if?…who cares, or possibly could know?)

What I know is
we can come back
or not – now power comes from self
the past has passed
abandon self to love,
and dance and learn
hang tough take care
each moment built your life’s net wealth
so drink your Sea Org buddies’ health
our new quest life right here!

DWJ August 2006

DWJ Sea Org

Life in Scotland 1970, an interlude

Scotland
My new husband and I went to Scotland to start anew, blessed with the courage of the young (he was only a couple of years older than me.) I had absolutely no idea of what I was headed into and was trusting that it would certainly be better than the life I had left behind. I was 17 years old and with so much having happened within the last couple of years I also hoped that I could somehow learn about and begin a ‘normal’ life.

I had visited Edinburgh in 1969 when I had joined the SO. I didn’t get to see much of the city though, as you can imagine. I remember grey…grey … and cobblestone streets. The buildings are grey, the roads are grey. And of course the skies. I wish now I had been able to really see more.

Life in a small Scottish village north of Glasgow was a tremendous culture shock. It was a beautiful place. The village was crowded around the end of the loch, wee houses with boats out front, and surrounded by the mountains. Picture postcard beautiful, with snow showing almost all year round on their peaks. The first thing that struck me was the cold. Oh my God, it was cold to a young Aussie! I wore multiple layers and suffered badly and was told scornfully by the locals the only way to be comfortable was to acclimatise.

My mother-in-law didn’t like me at all and we were living with her in a tiny council flat.
Somehow we got by. I learned to shop in the tiny local grocery. We ate lots of canned goods and instant meals as I didn’t know how to cook, and she refused to other than a family meal now and then. But when she did cook it was glorious! Lots of haggis and turnips and mash, I loved it.

The only heating in the tiny hoose was a wood fire that also heated the water tank above it. So no hot water most of the day. When I washed clothes and hung them outside they tended to freeze solid in the winter. This was amazing to me and I’d go around knocking on them.

I wanted to fit in, I had no intention of going back to East Grinstead, but it was almost impossible. I started having bad headaches and went to the local doctor. Within an hour my mother-in-law asked me if I was pregnant (and didn’t look pleased at the prospect). Apparently I had been seen by some of the locals walking away from the surgery with a green form (diet sheet) that was usually handed out to pregnant ladies! Word spread fast in that place, the curtains twitched whenever I went out. It’s funny looking back on it now.

I loved to roam the local hills above the village. The views were so breathtaking, I can remember them still, and the smell of truly fresh air. I remember going on a picnic once, a great outdoor event on another close by loch. Terrific food, good company and a million bloody European wasps. It didn’t seem to bother anyone that they were crawling all over the food.

Every afternoon at 4pm we had to go to my husband’s grandparent’s house for High Tea. This was very ritualised, with a precise number of cakes and tea. I liked them, they were very down to earth and only saw their grandson starting life with a new wife, unlike his mother. Then dinner was 8-9pm and that was a full meal.

There was a local Mission in Helensburgh, not too far away run by Sheena and Hunter Robinson. We went there a few times with the intention of working towards getting back on lines, but I don’t remember much about it and nothing came of it.

The funniest thing about my life in Scotland was that I started to mimic the accent.
“Och away wi’ya, ya daft wee hen” etc. It became so pronounced that towards the end of my time there my mother couldn’t understand me on the phone. I can still translate Billy Connolly quite well.

Life there didn’t suit me, and I soon found my husband was as crazy as you could imagine. I mean really, really nuts. He would fly into rages and have “invisible” stalkers. His mother hated me, this blonde bimbo from Australia who had taken her son. It was not fun.

I had left Scientology, left my family, left everything I had known. The relief I had felt at leaving behind the insanity started to recede in importance as I wondered what my life would become where I was. Isolated way up north, not in the country of my birth, I wanted to be with my family. But my family were in Scientology and I had fled it…..

Eventually I couldn’t take it as my husband was starting to become more and more crazy and violent in his actions, so I knew I had to get out or my life was in danger. I told him I was leaving and he threw all my clothes down the stairs and was so angry he broke off a piece of the stair railing and came after me with it. I stayed locked in a room and the next morning went to the local train station and sat there until the train came.

I travelled from one end of the country to the other and it was, for me, a terrifying experience. However I was befriended by a solider on his way back to London. I didn’t trust him at first, I was so scared  but he bought me lunch, chatted quietly and calmed my fears. When the train reached London he found a cab for me back to East Grinstead and waved goodbye. I have never forgotten him, and thank him for looking after me.