Sometimes survivor’s get themselves into bad situations with bad people because they haven’t been able to develop wise judgement and discernment, and they haven’t learned to trust those instincts. But I don’t make the same mistakes I used to! Now, after having gone through such horrible things because of Duval and Bride “Ministries,” I have finally developed better judgement and wiser discernment, and I have learned to trust that better judgement and discernment.
Sometimes it takes God allowing you to go through the wringer and bringing you through that process for your judgement to become better and for wise discernment to be built. Kinda brings a whole other level of meaning to “live and learn”!! 😕
All that to say this: if something doesn’t seem right, I pay attention now. And an alleged survivor emailing Carolyn and I, asking for help (with what, I don’t know), and giving their telephone number, asking me and/or Carolyn to give them a phone call… does not ring true to me. There will be no contact with this person, no personal response (aside from this), and certainly no telephone call from either myself or from Carolyn.
Message to Survivors
In case you, as a survivor, do not know this, do not give out your private info (phone numbers, addresses, etc) to strangers — and this includes “friends” who you meet on social media, but who you actually don’t know at all in “real life”…! — who contact you, especially those who contact you via social media and/or email. Any time you give out your private information, it should be for legitimate purposes, such as a job application, a doctor visit (a real doctor… not a self-proclaimed “expert” that you met online…), making online purchases, or something of the sort.
Furthermore, do not telephone a complete stranger (or worse yet, meet up with that person!!) who contacts you in such a manner, regardless of what they claim. As survivors, we have to be extra vigilant!!!
Any situation outside of legitimate purposes whereby you feel compelled to give out your private information (for instance, emailing Carolyn and I with your private telephone number… or a stranger on FB whom you have “friended” asks for your telephone number or wants to meet up with you…) needs to be carefully and judiciously weighed.
Until you have come to a certain point in your healing where you have learned to make wise decisions based upon proper judgement and discernment, you are probably better off to err on the side of caution, and to keep your private information private, even from us!
If you have someone in your life who has sound, Godly judgement (someone in your life who you interact with face-to-face… not someone you have met via social media), such as a close friend, a boss or a co-worker, a parent, a pastor… consider asking them for their opinion before you make a decision to give out your personal information to a total stranger.
In this day and age where social media and technology allows us to connect instantaneously to anyone from around the world, dishonorable people have been given a larger pool to fish from. And since vulnerable and blindly-trusting individuals have the idea that it is okay and perfectly safe to not only interact with total strangers, but that it is normal and even necessary to take them at their word that they are who they say they are, many people are taken advantage of. So be careful! It isn’t just eight-year-old children who can be taken advantage of by unscrupulous people. It’s grown adults, too, who have not yet developed wise judgement and discernment in order to protect themselves! So just be careful. ❤
Trust is earned, not given, and trust is neither blind nor stupid.
Healthy boundaries are not only 100% okay, they are 100% necessary! 😊
For some of us, these are lessons learned the hard way, but as you seek healing you will find that healing involves education, not only on the truth of the Word of God, but also on certain key “wisdoms” and life skills that you were never taught. Things such as:
- defining and defending healthy boundaries
- learning what are acceptable interactions versus unacceptable interactions
- how to notice red flags with people around you and situations you come across, and how to feel comfortable staying away from those “red-flag” situations
- learning how to recognize unhealthy and abnormal patterns of behavior in others (and within yourself)
These lessons have been hard-learned, but they are lessons I will never forget, and I hope that by sharing MY past mistakes, you can avoid at least some of those pitfalls for yourself.
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