Sheltered People Raised In Cults Explain Which Things About The Real World Shocked Them The Most

What's most unsettling about people who grow up in cults or strict and conservative religious groups is they are raised with a highly distorted view of the world.

Rather than being taught to have an open mind and heart, they are brainwashed into believing that there is a very firm right and wrong way to live.

Often including sexist, homophobic, racist and other blatantly discriminatory policies.

As a result, when people leave these societies, either being rescued or through their own bravery, they are often shocked to discover just how different the world is than they were led to believe.

Redditor Warrior_White was curious to hear about the most shocking discoveries people who escaped from cults and religious upbringings made when entering the real world, leading them to ask:
"Sheltered people raised by super religions/cults: what was something about the real world that shocked you when you learned about it?"

Comfort Levels Are OK.

"That it’s actually healthy to have boundaries."- aphroditespearl

It's Ok To Be Yourself

"The greatest thing to me is what it felt like to be authentic."

'When you grow up in a fundamentalist cult, your life is not your own."

"Everything is planned out for you, every worldview is shaped by your religion."

"Leaving that all behind and being my own, genuine person was the best and least expected blessings of leaving the Mormon cult."

"Yes, sex and drugs (esp psychedelics) were amazing too, but I love being my own person so much."- Bojikthe8th

"Normal People"

"How normal people aren’t thinking about you/judging you all the time, and even if they are- you can’t do anything about it anyway, some will judge no matter what you do."

"We (women, anyway) were raised to obsess over what we are wearing, how modest it is, and will it make men stumble?"

"My breasts are too small for one man but too large for all men, despite being what God gave me."

"My body is both too thin to bear children but somehow also too fat, and proof that I am a glutton."

"We were taught how to modulate our voices into a soft pleasant pitch, how to serve God with every breath, and how we’re living literally every single moment on a precarious cliff of falling into sin."

'The moment I realized that my hair color, my clothes, my makeup was more an expression of myself than a reflection of other’s desires was the moment I finally let go."

"I don’t dress for men, I don’t dress for women- I dress for myself."- Q_Fandango

The World Is More Wholesome Than Expected

"Where is all the sex and drugs?!"

"I was promised wanton lascivious f**king in the streets."- FairUnion275

Words, Words, Words...

"Nothing as major as here but my wife’s family is extremely religious, her grandfather was even a cult leader a few books written about him."

"Can’t get into details for sake of privacy, but it stands out to me and it blows my mind how ignorant her whole family is."

"And I don’t mean to sound like a jerk, but ignorance in the way of the most basic social cues and interactions and even words in conversation."

"I’ll be talking to her aunts and uncles in their sixties and they’ll have so many things they’ve never heard of it blows my mind."

'She has two aunts who actually took classes to learn how to have normal conversations because they were so odd."

"It’s weird."

"Even my wife is still learning and growing vocabulary and she’s 39."- Dorkknight112183

People Actually Can Be Compassionate, Equitable And Kind

"Didn't realize that Christianity wasn't the 'default' for adults."

"Didn't realize it's not normal to treat your family like garbage while being a super nice charismatic human to everyone else."

"More of a narcissistic thing but since I was so sheltered and they were so strict and obsessed with being in control, I had no idea."

"Didn't know that not everyone has an ulterior motive when speaking to you."

"Was raised with the girls inside doing women chores and the boys outside helping with man chores."

"Grew up and realized some men actually cook and clean as well... what a shocker."- free-the-krug

The World Is A Safer Place Than You Think

"Not raised religious, but raised by an incredibly sheltering parent."

"Turns out I *won't* be mugged and murdered for simply existing in a city setting without a male escort."- TheRedMaiden

In All Seriousness, It Has Many Health Benefits

"That I’m not gonna go to hell for jerking it and it’s completely normal to feel the urge to self pleasure and release on your own terms."- Nuck_7

Not Always Beholden To Others

"How people can just... Make decisions."

"You don't need to jump through hoops, meditate all night, read the bible, and pray, just because you want to buy a certain dress."

"You can just.. Buy it."

"You can make that decision."

"I can make that decision."

"Freedom was extremely surreal at first."

"It still sort of is."- celaeya

Absolutely Everything

"For me, it was a complete culture shock."

"People could do anything ."

"Women could treat men as equals, not always defer to them."

'People treat other people with more respect-- adults are treated like adults."

"People could talk about sex and bodily functions like periods without being ashamed."

"People weren't afraid of living their lives in a way that made them happy."

"In the first few months of being out of my parents' home, I learned so many new words and things I didn't know existed."

"I watched a lot of movies that would have been considered wickedly sinful in my former home."

"I had to relearn how to talk and act with people."

"Outside of the church, people do everything different, and the people you can and can't trust are different."

"I felt like I had the IQ of a normal 8 year old in the real world."- Fearless-Complaint16

Life Doesn't Need To Be Lived In Fear

“'End is nigh!''."

"Oh I’m waiting!"

“'Christo Viene'.”

"'I wish he would'."

"'You’ve been left behind' … yep."

"To suffer like the rest of us."

"Grew up in a rapture-centric evangelical household."

"Parts of it were loads of fun, some just straight up trauma porn."

"Y2K was a hoot in my house, we definitely believed it could all end, given all of the televangelists hopping on the doom train."

"The part that shocked me the most, or affected me the most is that you don’t realize until you are older that you really did believe the world would end, well, soon-ish."

"The idea of getting old, worrying about retirement, whether my aspirations would materialize, most of those things seemed more far fetched than the apocalypse did."- rotissrev

Privacy Is A Right, Not A Privilege

"The complete and total lack of privacy in the church vs actually having privacy."

"Besides being roomed with all my siblings and cousin."

"Daily body inspections, spankings, potty time."

"Also being treated like a toddler pretty much 24/7.'

"God forbid we did something without permission.'

"We didn’t address adults as sir or ma’am, calling our parents Mommy and Daddy into our teenage years, having a bedtime, knowing how to do chores but not really knowing why."

"Getting to the real world."

"I knew how wash clothes."

"I didn’t know why I was washing clothes."

"I knew how to wash dishes, I didn’t know why I was."

"If I wasn’t told to do something I would just stand there hopeless."- lighthousek

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