Be forewarned, the topic of spiritual sex predators is a difficult one to approach, as there are high emotional and egotistical influences on each end of the spectrum which would include sexually exploitative spiritual leaders. You might be surprised to discover how many of us are suffering from religious trauma and abuse.
The first thing that comes to mind, when you approach the idea of spiritual sex predators is to point fingers at the Catholic Church. In recent years there has been a lot of publicity around the church and sexual predators.
Our world is changing and victims of those who would take advantage and exploit people who you have influence over are being held accountable.
Statute of limitations
And those religious sexual predators protested saying, “But what about the statute of limitations?” Noted, there is a 7-year statute of limitation, but the clock does not start until the keyword ”Discovery” is initiated.
Now that these victims are speaking up, that’s when the seven years starts, and that’s when others need to start speaking up, not unlike the “me too” movement.
Throw the baby out with the bathwater
And it’s so easy to attack an organization such as the Catholic Church, to judge them and say that the church is “evil” which is a common contemporary reference and generalize with damning statements, like, “All priests are child molesters,” or some other defamatory phrase of choice.
You might like to consider for every story you hear about an active sexual predator preying on children or other parishioners, there are hundreds (if not thousands) of other sex crimes that you will never hear about.
And to stretch your thought process even more, the same kind of sex crimes are taking place in all religions further contributing to religious trauma and spiritual abuse. Sexual predators are not attracted only to the Catholic religion, they are attracted to all religions where there is an opportunity for religious psychopaths in a spiritual leadership position to have the power to wield their custodial or mentoring position to exploit members.
No religion is exempt from sexual predators
Maybe this truth will be revealed at some point in time, maybe not. But for those of us that work in the support of those suffering from religious trauma and abuse, we know what’s really happening behind the scenes, and we have an idea to what extent such an organization may go through to prevent this data from coming out, and discourage members from reporting such acts.
And if you’re not completely shocked yet, those who have sought safety from religious exploitation by moving into a more spiritual vein of growth and expansion without being “managed” by any strict religious order. For them, they find more peace of mind in the “higher consciousness,” or, “spiritual” communities which operate outside the denominational structure of churches.
Higher Consciousness Sex Predators
Even in these spiritual communities, sexual abuse victims are discovering that they may feel as though they have jumped from the pan into the fire. They are left feeling as though no place is safe.
Even so, there is hope for religious or spiritual abuse recovery.
Therapist Sex Predators
All types of therapy modalities have been infiltrated by sexual predators as well. It’s as if the term therapist should be reconfigured to read, “The Rapist,” as a warning to anyone who might be a potential client and/or victim of a sex crime within the wall of a therapist’s office.
Management Sex Predators
To be fair, any business or organization with more than twenty “Managers” or management positions are more than likely to have sexual predators waiting for someone who might like to move up the corporate ladder.
Peer Sex Predators
Any employer with more than 350 employees, which also extends over into any organization membership or group of volunteers, your peers within this group will have been infiltrated by sexual predators as well. You will find peer sex predators in most any group for which you might volunteer, fraternal organization, club, or any gathering of people, and if any group or organization has more than 350 participants, it will be a sex predator magnet.
What can you do?
Our society is making progress, but the system is progressing very slowly. So, unfortunately, the ownness is on you to take responsibility to protect yourself.
It is becoming easier to report a sexual predator, but be forewarned that there are also
Law Enforcement Sex Predators
There is almost no system that wields authority, whether legally, spiritually, or socially imbued, which is immune from the effects of the subversive sexually exploitative criminals lurking amidst its hierarchy.
Thankfully, in this day and age, you have the right to say, “No.”
This can be more difficult in a spiritual, custodial, coaching, mentoring, or counseling relationship, but don’t let that stop you.
If I have a client who has a significant fear of spiders, you can bet that at some point in their work with me, they are going to be playing with a giant hairy tarantula in my office.
That is, unless the client says, “I don’t think I am ready for that part of this process right now.”
If I were to force the client to have the experience, against the will of my client, I could be completely liable, and may rightfully be exposing myself to the legal ramifications which may come from doing so.
The client, any client, always has the right to opt-out of any process at any time, and if I do not honor that I am putting my reputation and practice at risk.
You can see where I am going with this:
You can at any time use this same statement,
I don’t think I am ready for that part of this process right now.
This is an inoffensive, yet firm, “No,” which is recognized by the court.
Initiating this tactic will avail you the time and space to reassess your relationship with this person and decide how to best approach the issue. Curtailing the relationship is probably the first order of business if you’re feeling awkward, pressured, or threatened.
Unfortunately, you will not have found this information until after you’ve been victimized by a sexual predator (who are mostly men, but there are also female sexual predators in leadership positions as well).
If I could advise anyone who is thinking about entering into a coaching, mentoring, or spiritual relationship, prior to joining any group of any kind, I would tell them to
Read the group’s or practitioner’s Code of Ethics, first.
If they have them printed on their letterhead and you can have a copy of it, this is a legal contract. Even if they claim, “separation of church and state,” and they have a policy prohibiting the exploitation of their members or clients, this is perceived by the court as a legal contract, and you are protected.
You never have to be a victim of a spiritual sex predator ever again.
And when you feel uncomfortable in any process, by all means, opt-out by saying,