I am a woman who grew up in an ifb church. (And survived!) My parents refuse to acknowledge that it was a cult still to this day. Even despite several family members pleading with them to leave the “cult”. My sister and I truly believe we grew up in a cult. Here goes:
Regular skirt length checks (pants were forbidden), two fingers from the collar bone shirt checks, hair the right length, approved amount of make up (too much you looked like a whore, their words not mine, no makeup you were disrespecting God by not giving Him your best), if the doors were open you had to be there, cut off contact with outside family members who the pastor screamed their names out from the pulpit that they were sending people to hell simply for being part of a church he didn’t agree with, open racism, hate speech, and prejudice. Open mocking of other churches and pastors from the pulpit.
Whenever anyone leaves (I left when I was 17) the entire congregation is told from the pulpit not to speak to or acknowledge said person. I’m talking parents are told to cut off their children, spouses are told to cut off their spouse who has left. Insanity!
I engaged in more sex, drugs, and alcohol at church than I did anywhere else! The youth we’re not allowed to ask any questions and we were pretty much left alone to our own devices trying to make sense of our messed up lives.
What a mess!
I’m now a recovering alcoholic. 20 months sober by the grace of God. I attend a non denominational church. My children are growing up to love the Lord. To know Him and understand what He’s done for us! There is no dress code, there are no impossible standards, there’s not one single angry man who has the ultimate authority in the church. God. God is the authority!
I’m truly looking for input if this was indeed a cult? Anyone with experience with cults I’d love to hear your take on this!