CIFS Australia

Cult Information and Family Support Inc.

About CIFS

Can I Help


In The News

Books + Video




Info Search




Quote of the Day:
'Victims gradually lose their ability to make independent decisions and exercise informed consent.'
- Dr Margaret Singer



| 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013- | World |
CIFS Queensland Conference 2012:
Summary of Sessions
The Trauma of Paychological manipulation
Parliament House, Brisbane
March 9-10, 2012

National Conference at Parliament House, Brisbane
The Trauma of
Psychological Manipulation:
Recognition of and Responses to
Victims and Survivors of
Destructive Groups and Cults


      Friday 9th March
      & Saturday 10th March, 2012


  • Professor Warwick Middleton, MB BS, FRANZCP, MD
  • Professor Doni Whitsett, Ph.D; LCSW (Pictured)
  • Psychoanalyst Lorna Goldberg
  • Psychoanalyst William Goldberg
  • Associate Professor Mandy Morgan
  • Senior Lecturer Dr Kerry Gibson
  • Guest Speaker - Senator Sue Boyce
  • Special Guest - Senator Nick Xenophon

The Conference was attended by over 80 delegates, mostly professional counsellors and therapists interested in the phenomena of post-cult trauma, and re-integration back to normal society.

Program Overview

Survivors seek and need mental health professionals who understand the kind of manipulation and deception that they have endured. Family members need mental health professionals who can help them make sense of their experience of loss and the change in their relationships with their loved ones.

Attendees learned the skills they need to assess and treat victims of thought reform, and how to address the issues with loved ones. The conference addressed the psychological after-effects of cultic abuse and trauma.

Participants acquired a broad background of knowledge of coercive groups and manipulating, controlling relationships through presentations by international experts and participation in practical workshops.

Topics Covered in Lectures or Workshops

  • Psychological Manipulation and Trauma
  • Mind Control and other dynamics of Cults and High Demand Groups
  • Assessment, Diagnosis, and Treatment Modalities
  • Working with PTSD and Trauma related Symptomatology
  • Working with Cult-involved Families
  • Educating the public and parents

Conference open to

  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychologists
  • GP's and Health Professionals
  • Counsellors
  • Social Workers
  • Politicians
  • Clergy / Pastors
  • Support Workers
  • Students
  • Ex-Members & Family

Outcomes for Participants

  • Delegates learned the dynamics of mind control: how it is induced, how it is maintained, what the after-effects are likely to be
  • Delegates will learn to differentiate between mind control and other forms of manipulation
  • Delegates learned how to give advice to families who have loved ones in cults, including topics such as: how to communicate with the cult member, how to handle finances, where to get help, how to maximize the chances of helping the cult member leave the cult
  • Delegates learned the best interventions for helping victims of cults, before, during and after their involvement
  • Delegates learned how to conduct psychotherapy with former cult members, including similarities and differences between therapeutic work with former cult members and other clients/patients
  • Delegates learned to distinguish between symptoms that are the result of cult involvement and those that have other etiologies
  • Delegates learned how to give practical advice to former cult members to help them move on with their lives
  • Delegates learned preventive measures that can be taken by a free society to help lessen the likelihood that people will fall victim to cults



Disclaimer:This news page is about groups, organizations or movements, which may have been called "cults" and/or "cult-like" in some way, shape or form. But not all groups called either "cults" or "cult-like" are harmful. Instead, they may be benign and generally defined as simply people intensely devoted to a person, place or thing. Therefore, the discussion or mention of a group, organization or person on this page, is not necessarily meant pejoratively. Readers are encouraged to read widely on a topic before forming an opinion. Never accept information from a single source at face value. This website only holds a small amount of information and should not be relied on as a complete source. For example, if you find older information, this should be weighed up against newer information as circumstances can change.
S i t e   S e a r c h :

1 0 0 0 +   p a g e s






ABC Radio:
5 Apr 2018
16 Oct 2010
14 Oct 2010


CIFS Conference:
Brisbane 2012 *
Canberra 2011
Seminar 2011
Brisbane 2010


Visions of Paradise


Cults: After-Effects




Top of Page
| Home | About CIFS | Can I Help | Contact | In The News | Books + Video | Stories | Articles | Events | Info Search | Links |