Growing up in the Org

Share your personal experiences with others. We're not here to judge or criticise, but to share and support.

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Squirrel Girl
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Growing up in the Org

Post by Squirrel Girl » Wed Oct 26, 2005 2:26 pm

I grew up in $cientology (I assume there is a reason everyone using symbols when typing that gawd-awful word?). My parents were in and out over the course of my early years. They joined staff for the last time when I was about 10 or 11. My dad worked all day (when he had a job), then went to the Org at night. I began taking courses (Communication course and the Learning Book Course for starters I think) and quickly found out it was a good way to get attention. All the adults around me praised me and I ate it up. I loved going to work with my dad every night (he was an Ethics Officer at the time) and was soon begging to be allowed to join staff after my older brother and sister were allowed to.

Unfortunately, my parents relented. I became a Comm Runner, working in the mail room and running paperwork from office to office. The only good thing I enjoyed was getting to read ethics reports and such. Much of it was about sex, and at 12, I couldn't keep my nose out of it. Never got busted for it, though.

I didn't get to take any more courses after that. Just wasn't a priority, I suppose. I did get a first-hand look at how staff members lived, though. We were always rather poor, so at the time I didn't really think anything of it, but as an adult I see it for what it was - enforced poverty. These people were living three families to a small apartment, scrounging for gas money, and wearing the same clothes day in and day out. Which is ridiculous, b/c you couldn't be late for your post (so you'd better find a way to fix your beat-up car), you couldn't take off to care for a sick kid (so you'd better get a grip on that head lice and ringworm that's going around), and you had to look presentable (so hit the garage sales for clothes, People!).

I joined the Sea Org when I was 12. Why not? It had to be better than where I was. My parents had split up and half of the kids were with my mom and the other half with my dad. We had NOTHING. My parents were not allowed to spend time with us (except Sunday, which was spent doing laundry at the laundry mat before we hit the beach for a few hours of fun - those beach memories are the only GOOD memories I have of that time). Of course, when the Org hit a State of Emergency, even this was revoked and they worked from about 11am to 11pm seven days a week with only an hour or two break for dinner (which was cooked by us kids).

So, who's watching the little ones this whole time? My 10-year-old sister became a nanny for our younger siblings and a few other kids. Watched them by herself at a staff member's apartment each night. Needless to say, none of us went to public school (we'd been pulled out and 'home-schooled'), so getting home at midnight wasn't much of an issue.

Back to the SO. I was flown to NY and immediately got desperately homesick. I was in class all day and working in the kitchen with a total pervert chef. I buddied up with a couple girls my age, one of which was an SO officer. She treated me horribly! She was maybe 14 and she had an ego the size of Texas. I hated it and begged to go home. After my mother visited a few months later and realized I was going all over NYC with no adult supervision, living in a barrack-style building with men, women, and children (none of whom gave a fig about my well-being), she insisted I be sent home. And I was.

I technically didn't 'blow.' I was allowed to remain an SO member at the Org. Don't remember exactly what I did, but it involved getting staff members to 'route' through processes every week. Let me tell you...they were none to happy to have a 12-year-old on their asses every week trying to get them to fill out some freaking paperwork while they tried to get their stats up high enough before 2pm on Thursday.

After months and months of no sleep and a visit from children's services (I assume we were reported to them by a concerned relative?), my parents finally blew. They packed us in a tiny, worn-out car (four kids in what I believe was a little hatchback), threw in some dirty laundry and a cooler with food, and drove 20 hours to where we had family we hadn't spoken to in years.

When we arrived, the family threw together some household items and helped us get settled. We literally had nothing but the clothes on our backs. We were enrolled in public school (try adjusting to THAT after being force-fed CoS bull for years - we were totally brainwashed). I had to start back in the 5th grade (two years behind) b/c they didn't acknowledge my CoS 'schooling.' I don't remember if we were harassed for blowing, but I'm sure they tried to get my parents to return. We were all declared suppressive (not that I minded, it just bugged me that I didn't technically 'blow' - my parents did). Turns out, part of the reason we left was b/c I was wanting to leave staff so I could focus on school and have a normal life rather than working every night. They basically told my parents to get rid of me.

I have since gone to college, married, had kids and moved on with my life. None of my family is involved with CoS anymore (thank GOD for that!). I'm so grateful my parents saved us and gave us a chance at a life. But at the same time I'm BITTER! Angry, mad, ashamed, you-name-it. I feel like I was robbed of a normal childhood. The Tom Cruise thing really is getting to me. I want to scratch his eyes out and shake Katie into reality. The only good thing that will come of it is that the general public will become more aware of the truth of $cientology and seek out answers on the Internet (which, incidentally, will be LRH's undoing - information available at people's fingertips? On any subject? Give it 10 years...CoS will go down in flames).

Thanks for letting me get my story out. I know I'm shaky on some of the details, but I don't really remember a lot of the staff positions and other technical terms anymore. What a blessing that is!

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Post by Ltricha1 » Wed Oct 26, 2005 2:47 pm

Thank you for telling your story SG,
It is wonderful that your survived $cientology! It gives hope to those still trapped in the lie.

Why do we use the $, well I can only speak for myself. It is because $ is what $cientology is really about. Not about spiritual freedom but about $ for the cult management.

It is a shame that a portion of your childhood and the lives of your parents and siblings were wasted on $cientology, and thus your anger is justified. I only wasted 6 months with them and around 2-3 Grand, but even that was too much.

Good luck on your journey, and welcome aboard.
[url=]$cientology's real product[/url]
Tech is the Carrot,
Admin is the Cart,
Ethics is the whip,
Guess who the Horses are.

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Post by Sarah » Wed Oct 26, 2005 3:46 pm

Hi Squirrel girl

Thanks for telling us your story. Good you got out and can give your children a normal childhood.

Best wishes for your future.


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Post by mickwenlock » Wed Oct 26, 2005 5:42 pm

hey SG - feel free to subscribe to the XSO list on Yahoo. Your story isall too familiar and all too sad.

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Post by Squirrel Girl » Wed Oct 26, 2005 8:39 pm

Thanks for the responses. It just kills me that CoS can deny what they are doing when everyone has stories that are so similar! It's just wrong.

I'm a dummy...what's XSO?

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Post by Sarah » Wed Oct 26, 2005 9:04 pm

XSO = eX (former) Sea Org member

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Post by merlin » Wed Oct 26, 2005 9:09 pm

It's hard to shake the penchant for using AA's*, wot?

* Acronymous Abbreviations :wink:

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Post by Ladybird » Wed Oct 26, 2005 10:00 pm

Hi Squirrel Girl. One of the biggest mistakes and worst regrets in my life is inflicting scientology on my children when they were young.

I am so glad you have survived and are away from scientology.

Thank you for sharing your story...I am sure some lurkers who might be trying to justify why "clearing the planet" is "greatest good for the greatest number of dynamics" and neglecting their own children is ok will see themselves through your eyes.

Love, Ladybird

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Re: thanks

Post by mickwenlock » Wed Oct 26, 2005 10:17 pm

Squirrel Girl wrote:...what's XSO?
XSO is a yahoo mailing list that I run for ex Sea Org Members. You can check it out at:

Its just a list for people who went through the SO thing, it can be funny, angry or just interesting. We have a few people who joined the SO at around the same age you did.

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Post by James » Wed Oct 26, 2005 10:54 pm

Dear Squirrel girl,
thanks for sharing your story.
It always gives me hope to read stories of people who managed to get out - hope for someone who is close to me and who is in ...

Alle the best for you!


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Post by Squirrel Girl » Wed Oct 26, 2005 11:34 pm

Thanks for clarifying that for me. I'll definitely check it out. And brush up on my acronyms! lol

And don't stress too hard over raising kids in CoS. I've forgiven my parents. It's hard to understand how they would allow that to happen to us, but then again I know they love us and would never intentionally put us in harm's way. They were snowed and brainwashed into it and free will took a backseat. Of six kids, four came out fine.

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Post by StevieRayFan » Thu Oct 27, 2005 4:36 am


As a parent of a 28 year old daughter, I’d like to say that because your parents got out at all, means they were conflicted and decided for the family. I witnessed a lot of what you detailed, back in the 70’s. The same stuff right down to the garage sale clothes. People blew, but never as I can recall for the welfare of their kids! As a matter of fact, to this day it makes me sick to think about what so-called adults routinely did to their kids while off “saving the world�. Your parents did right for you…

>>> I'm BITTER! Angry, mad, ashamed, you-name-it.

I don’t blame you.

>>> information available at people's fingertips? On any subject? Give it 10 years...CoS will go down in flames

You very well may be right, Kiddo! That rubber band will only stretch so far. I don’t think they had expanded much over the last 20 years or so, and each year the story gets more and more out there.

Good luck to you!

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Post by serenitynow » Fri Oct 28, 2005 5:03 am

Hi Squirrel Girl,

I enjoyed reading your story very much. I too was raised in Scientology and joined the Sea Org in my late teens (not quite as young as you). I understand your feelings of anger toward the Church and Tom Cruise on TV acting like a fool. All I can say is, I felt the same way and since posting here for a while has been healing for me. There are many wonderful people on this board to talk to. I'm so glad to hear your life is going well now, and keep posting!

Serenity Now

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Post by x2468 » Mon Nov 21, 2005 4:52 am

wow. what a story. glad ur okay now. the more i read these stories the more i wanna go piss on the nearest Co$ church.

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Post by Don Carlo » Mon Nov 21, 2005 4:56 am

Please don't vandalize. They have security cameras everywhere, and it could get you in big trouble. Plus it's stooping to their level.

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