February 23, 2014 Comments Off on Germany’s Shelter for Victims of Ritual Abuse
Germany’s Shelter for Victims of Ritual Abuse
By Antonia Oettingen
Gaby Breitenbach has seen and heard some awful things. The German psychotherapist is telling me about how sometimes, from a very young age, women are systematically tortured by people seeking to split their minds into multiple identities. The desire is to control the victims, of course, but also to leave them with an identity that seems perfectly normal to strangers. While the victim’s everyday identity will have no “memory” of the trauma they’ve experienced, Breitenbach says the abusers are able to “summon” the other identities with various triggers. This can be something as simple as a ringtone, for example.
This method of mind control is known as “ritual abuse.” Most of the time the abuse is sexual in nature. Sometimes the abusers crave power; sometimes they’re just being cruel. Sometimes they’re pseudo-religious nutjobs, sometimes they’re fascists, and oftentimes they are organized crime networks. Sometimes the abusers use their victims to gain membership to a secret society; sometimes they flick a switch in their minds to make them commit suicide. The world can be an incredibly shitty place.
Last month, Breitenbach opened a safehouse to treat victims of ritual abuse in Germany. Vielseits, which translates to versatility, is the first of its kind in Europe and offers trauma therapy to anyone who walks through its doors….
Can you tell me about the kind of women who seek help at Vielseits?
All the women who end up with us are victims of organized, sadistic, and sexual violence, who have been subjected to mind control. There are also organizations practicing ritual abuse with a kind of spiritual superstructure where certain ideologies come into play, such as neo-fascist mindsets or different pseudo-religious groups, like Scientology or satanic cults.
From an outsider’s perspective, these are women who appear to have led seemingly normal lives—their everyday persona wouldn’t have been aware of the abuse they were subjected to at night, weekends, or on school holidays. These traumatic experiences are contained in different parts of the identity, so they’re kept away from the conscious, and the person has no knowledge of the trauma they’ve experienced.
How are these personas created?
The victims are subjected to near-death situations—with the help of electric shocks, waterboarding, or other forms of torture—from an early age, and then they’re “rescued” by their tormentors. At some point the victim’s psyche will develop an automated response—it will split, in a bid to survive. As a consequence of the systematic torture, the victims can develop a range of different identities throughout their lifetimes. Offenders perpetrating the abuse hold the key to this system of split identities and have the power to evoke a specific set of behaviors using triggers—which can be hand signs or certain smells or sounds, like a ringtone….