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And the Memory Wars Wage On

I was reminded of the “memory wars” of the 1990s yesterday when listening to an episode of Marc Maron’s popular WTF podcast. The guest, comedian Tom Arnold, told Maron about his traumatic childhood, which included an alcoholic mother who abandoned him and a neighbor who molested him. Arnold said he came to terms with the trauma through therapy, which culminated in him confronting the neighbor in person. The man denied it, apparently yelling at Arnold that his memories were wrong. It was a heartbreaking story, and obvious from Arnold’s telling that he deeply believes his memories are not at all wrong.

I don’t know any details about Arnold’s case other than what he recounted to Maron. I want to believe that his memories are sound, and that confronting his molester provided him with some form of relief. (Update, 3/6: And, as a commenter pointed out below, Arnold also said on the podcast that he found several other neighborhood boys who said they had been molested by the same man.) But it must be said that this sort of revelation — in which a person uncovers, through therapy or hypnosis, a memory that had been repressed for years or even decades — happened a lot in the early 1990s.

In October 1991, Arnold’s wife at the time, Roseanne (Barr) Arnold, was on the cover of People Magazine with the headline: “Roseanne’s Brave Confession: I AM AN INCEST SURVIVOR.” According to the piece, Roseanne had repressed these memories until Tom, then her fiancé, told her what he had uncovered about his own childhood. Immediately after hearing his story, “I began to shake and sweat,” Roseanne told People. “Pictures started to appear before my eyes—surreal and frightening, looming large, then crystallizing into my mother’s face. I remember being abused.” After more sessions with a therapist, Roseanne began to dream about specific abuse memories.

Just a few months earlier, former Miss America Marilyn Van Derbur had made similar claims. And it wasn’t just celebrities. Stories of everyday adults suddenly recovering memories of childhood abuse appeared in the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Newsweek, and Time, among others.

Why was this happening? It was due, at least in part, to several popular books that provided instructions for recovering repressed memories. “The books urged therapists to ask their clients about childhood incest,” notes William Saletan in his excellent 2010 Slate series on memory. And they had a huge impact. “Women were suing their parents for millions of dollars. Hundreds of accused families sought help.”

As these accusations mounted, several high-profile psychology researchers began speaking out against the idea of repressed memories. In a 1993 article in American Psychologist, memory researcher Elizabeth Loftus pointed out that little if any scientific evidence supported the idea of repressed memories: Nobody knew how commonly traumatized people repress memories, or how accurate the memories are, or how juries are likely to react to them. And considering the lawsuits waged against alleged abusers, Loftus found this lack of evidence disturbing. “When we move from the privacy of the therapy session, in which the client’s reality may be the only reality that is important, into the courtroom, in which there can be but a single reality, then we as citizens in a democratic society are entitled to more solid evidence,” she wrote.

This debate between practicing therapists and research psychologists became known as the memory wars. Over time, scientific criticisms by Loftus and others got more attention in the press, and some accusers recanted their stories. Loftus’s own research helped drive the increased skepticism. As Saletan’s article describes in depth, Loftus’s studies showed just how easily false memories can be implanted by a trusted source.

Whatever happened to the memory wars? Do people still believe in the power of repressed memories? Loftus and her colleagues addressed these questions in last month’s issue of Psychological Science.

Their study includes two experiments. In the first, the researchers gave 390 undergraduates surveys about how memory works. The surveys asked participants whether they agreed or disagreed with various statements. Some of the statements — such as “Memory is constantly being reconstructed and changed every time we remember something” and “Memory can be unreliable” — are supported by lots of evidence. The respondents seem to have known that, for 91 percent of them agreed with the first statement and 86 percent with the second.

Other statements focused on repressed memories, which as I mentioned are not rooted in a whole lot of evidence. But the students felt otherwise: 81 percent agreed that “traumatic memories are often repressed,” and 70 percent agreed that “repressed memories can be retrieved in therapy accurately.” And 86 percent agreed that if a person has emotional problems and needs therapy, childhood sexual assault is a plausible explanation — even if the person has no memory of any kind of abuse.

But who cares about college kids. What about the opinions of mental health professionals? Turns out that many of them also believe in repressed memories, though in somewhat lower numbers than they did in the 90s.

The researchers surveyed hundreds of clinical psychologists, experimental psychologists, psychoanalysts, hypnotherapists, primal therapists, neuro-linguistic programming therapists, life coaches, scientologists (!), and family therapists, as well as (via Mechanical Turk) members of the public in the U.S., U.K., and India. Here’s a comparison of how the beliefs of “mainstream PhD psychotherapists” have changed over the past decade:

Patihis et al, 2013
Patihis et al, 2013

They have evidently lost some faith in hypnosis, and have gained respect for the idea of implanting false memories. On the question of the objectivity of repressed memories, though, the responses haven’t changed much, with agreements hovering between 11 and 23 percent.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, experimental psychologists are more skeptical of repressed memories than are psychoanalysts, and psychoanalysts are more skeptical than “alternative therapists.” Concerning the statement, “Traumatic memories are often repressed,” 27 percent of experimental psychologists agreed, compared with 69 percent of psychoanalysts and 90 percent of neuro-linguistic programming therapists, the study found.

Loftus and her team take these data to mean that there’s still lots to be done in the way of disseminating findings about memory research to mainstream practitioners and the public at large. “These findings suggest that the memory wars are not over,” they write. “Nevertheless, these battles may now be limited largely to discrete pockets of practicing clinicians, especially those with specific theoretical views regarding the nature of memory.”

This may be true, but also glazes over a few academics who are more sympathetic to the idea of repressed memories. Take Ross Cheit, a professor of public policy and political science at Brown University. Cheit directs the “Recovered Memory Project,” an online archive of cases of repressed memories that have been independently corroborated. Cheit wasn’t happy with this recent Loftus paper, to say the least. “The article is so flawed that one scarcely knows where to begin,” he wrote on the Project’s website. He points to several studies showing that trauma can, rarely, be repressed. Loftus and her colleagues, he adds, “offer a false dichotomy between ‘scientists’ and ‘practitioners,’ ignoring the substantial number of research scientists, like Jennifer Freyd, whose work challenges their beliefs.”

To recap: In the 1990s, a lot of psychologists believed in repressed memories of abuse, and a lot of people claimed to recover such memories. Many of these were probably cases in which the abuse was suggested in therapy, but didn’t actually happen in real life. And some of these, some unknown but small number, were probably real cases of abuse.

Clearly Tom Arnold believes his case was real, and now many of Marc Maron’s millions of podcast listeners may also believe in the power of repressed memories.

For what it’s worth, Arnold’s now ex-wife, Roseanne, has revised her story of abuse. In early 2011, Roseanne appeared on the Oprah show and said that she regretted her 1991 allegations. “I think it’s the worst thing I’ve ever done,” Roseanne told Oprah. She said that although her parents were “abusive,” she was wrong to use the word “incest.” She attributed her behavior to a combination of psychiatric drugs and mental illness, saying, “I totally lost touch with reality in a big, big way.”


The study at the center of this post was led by Lawrence Patihis, Psychological Science, vol. 25, 519-530 (2014).

286 thoughts on “And the Memory Wars Wage On

  1. We might throw in the many cases of “alien abduction” which “came to light” through the use of hypnosis (I seem to recall some came out in attempts to check for child abuse instances, but maybe that’s an influenced “memory” of my own). I believe these “abduction” cases continue also, although also at a lower rate.

    I have to wonder, too: even if the repressed memories are false, might they reveal something more than susceptibility to therapist/hypnotic suggestion? At least one serious researcher who didn’t believe in UFOs decided that, aliens or not, the cases said something significant about the human experience/psyche. Perhaps we should look more closely at cases where people went through the same therapy or hypnotic “regression” treatments and did NOT experience such unpleasant memories.

  2. I don’t know directly about repressed memories, but I do have a few clear, distinct memories of being present at events that didn’t happen, and I suspect others do, too.

  3. If the guy you say molested you says “Your memories are wrong,” does this mean your memories are wrong? Does the accused trump the accuser?
    Actually, Roseanne says “I began to have dreams about having been molested” THEN Tom drove her to see the therapist (p. 86). The author reverses this.
    The author says Marilyn Van Derbur made similar claims. Somewhat similar, yes. She recalled being molested by her father, and learned her sister had always remembered being molested by their father. Was that corroboration for Marilyn’s accusations?
    Those “several popular books” (by such authors as Wright, Ofshe and Pendergrast) all provided “instructions for recovering repressed memories.” What were the instructions so we can all avoid recovering false memories?

  4. If you listened to the full Maron podcast you would’ve heard that I was inspired to confront my childhood rapist after visiting my old neighborhood and discovering 6 other boys he’d done the exact same thing the exact same way to. Including his younger brother. These small town men carried a lot of shame. I also became aware that the pedophine was about to adopt his 4th son. My memories are painfully were accurate and were always there. The other boys who separately offered their stories just added to my need to do something before he adopted again. He has not adopted since and has been confronted by others including his family. I can’t speak for other peoples memories (Marilyn Van Derbur is my hero) but I stopped this fucking asshole and with the proper therapy and gameplan I highly recommend it. I also recommend getting the whole story before you add someone to your lame research.

  5. Hi Tom (if it is Tom),

    I appreciate you adding this, and I’ve now amended the text to make note of it as well. I’m sorry that you’ve been through so much pain. As I said in the piece, I don’t know anything about your situation other than what you said in the podcast. The science on repressed memories in general is very complicated, and my only purpose in writing this was to show how complex and difficult these cases often are.

  6. The lines were drawn for the “memory” wars in 1994: justice vs. memory reliability. Elizabeth Loftus and Patti Barton were interviewed by Seattle Times reporter Christy Scattarella. Barton told the reporter, “It’s not easy to prove a case 30 years after the fact. But it’s doable. It’s a matter of justice.”
    Loftus told the reporter, “It’s a feel-good measure based on myths and rumor. It’s pretty infuriating. There is no scientific support that we totally repress a stream of trauma memories into the unconscious and reliably recover them decades later.”

    As for Roseanne’s memories as recounted in People: Tom called her from re-hab, then she had the dreams, then Tom took her to see a therapist.

    If Tom says he always remembered the abuse, then this rules out repression. He found the courage to confront his abuser and make this world a safer place. As did Marilyn van Derbur and Sandra Dee who also appeared on People covers in 1991.

  7. This article is poorly researched and outdated by about twenty years.
    Marilyn Van Derbur did not just “make claims,” she has gone on to do public speaking around the country and she has helped hundreds of thousands of people like me, who were silenced, threatened, or intimidated by the “False Memory Syndrome Foundation” and its supporters, like Elizabeth Loftus.

    Marilyn’s sister validated her incest memories, as she too was sexually abused by their father, but never repressed it. Marilyn’s father admitted to what he had done.

    The FMSF has since fizzled out and is nearly extinct, because truth always prevails. The FMSF was and is, nothing more than a place for some real child abusers to be supported financially and psychologically. The FMSF was founded in part by Ralph Underwager, who said in an interview with the editor-in-chief of Paidika: The Journal of Pædophilia “Paedophiles need to become more positive and make the claim that paedophilia is an acceptable expression of God’s will for love and unity among human beings.”

    The FMSF was also founded by the parents of Jennifer J. Freyd, a highly respected psychology professor, who privately accused her father of sexually abusing her as a child. Jennifer’s father denied Jennifer’s memories and her parents formed the False Memory Syndrome Foundation.

  8. Self-help books do not have the power to create false memories in people, and the vast majority of repressed memory cases were not due to any known influence of a book.
    In addition, the vast majority of cases did not involve law suits of parents. Most people, like me, privately accused our family members, without seeking anything but the truth.
    Elizabeth Loftus has been shown to be little more than a person who makes money defending those accused of serious crimes, and she has been sued for invasion of privacy when she took her “memory research” too far.
    Loftus’s studies have NOT shown how easily false memories of trauma can be implanted by a trusted source. This article is spreading false information. There is no scientific evidence of a “false memory syndrome,” and Loftus’s studies have never involved anyone falsely recalling serious trauma and child sexual abuse. Her most famous study was nothing more than a case of parents lying to their child in order to get them to believe they experienced being lost in a shopping mall.

  9. There are more than seventy studies that give evidence of discontinuous memories of childhood sexual abuse, physical abuse, or trauma. There are also corroborated cases of Dissociative Amnesia for child sexual abuse, which include confessions from the perpetrator. Repression/dissociation for traumatic events has been well-documented for decades.
    The only reason that any mental health professional would lose faith in hypnosis, is due to the fact that hypnosis is quite different from hypno-analysis, and the latter ought to be respected.
    The real reason some psychologists are more skeptical of repressed memories is because the FMSF successfully campaigned against therapy and therapists who have helped those who have blocked out trauma –so much so—that many therapists are afraid of lawsuits if they even allow the client to explore having blocked out trauma, or if the client shows signs of abuse, and begins to recall having been a victim of sexual abuse.
    Calling this very serious subject, “the memory wars” is not only ignorant, but it is offensive to intelligent discussion.

  10. You have little evidence to claim that many cases of repressed memories in the 1990s were due to false suggestion by a therapist. You can say that many therapists probably suggested abuse, but that abuse did indeed happen, is very possible. Most therapists do not mention child sexual abuse to a client unless there is evidence the client was abused.
    Roseanne Arnold did an injustice to all people who have experienced dissociative amnesia (repressed memories) for child sexual abuse. She may very well have been sexually abused as a child, but we will never know the truth now because she made such quick and public claims, and then retracted much of it, and practically made a joke of it on Oprah.

  11. One should remember that, besides possibly being erasable or repressible, memories are also frequently highly malleable.

  12. If one mark of a good report is the dust it stirs up, then this one is not bad at all. Personally, I’m skeptical of memory stuff; my own memories range from detailed and accurate to detailed and wildly inaccurate*. I, too, have remembered things that didn’t happen, or happened very differently than my memory showed. I’m still not sure in those cases whether the memory is “made up” from some outside source such as movies or books, or is a mashup of other, similar, memories into a coherent whole, or something else entirely. The mind is a very complicated thing, and it’s hard for me to entirely trust my own senses, let alone my own memories. We’re all different, however.
    *as tested by other people who may or may not remember things accurately, either, of course. Still, when I remember being at an event that I manifestly was not at, perhaps the memory is at fault. Furthermore, I’ve found that many people I know remember, very strongly, things I also experienced which simply did not happen the way they remember – perhaps a combination of the ‘eyewitness’ and ‘fuzzy memory’ effects. I’m not even going to wade into the swamp of memories that change over time…

  13. My thing was I always knew what happened but I guess I felt like it wasn’t a big deal or that I must’ve deserved it. Sobriety and the other boys coming forward changed that for me and I acted. I also had a revelation the moment my son was born. I wasn’t just some bad kid. I was infact him and how the hell could someone have done those things to even me as a child? Any of those bad things. BTW I also remembered a lot of kindness and love and compassion from my childhood I’d forgotten about.

    1. Once I recalled what happened, I thought it was pretty bizarre, but really no big deal, until someone asked me–what if he did that to your daughter?

  14. Dear Susan Murphy, please stop throwing around, “there is no scientific support that we totally repress a stream of trauma memories into the unconscious and reliably recover them decades later.”
    There is countless research to support, ;prove, and demonstrate repression/dissociation. “Scientific proof” is not needed, and science has known to be wrong. There is far more evidence that repression and accurate recall for trauma, than there is for any “false memory syndrome.”

  15. I just want to say that I believe Tom Arnold… but not because of the facts he has presented here (although compelling as they are), but because it is extremely RARE for a male to make up/invent/lie about a male perpetrator having sexually abused them.

  16. John R,

    Studies show that repressed memory for trauma, can be more accurate then normal memory, and please do not compare your normal memory to the dissociation -and then recall- of trauma and long-term child sexual abuse.

  17. Susan Murohy,

    please excuse me. I see that you were quoting Loftus. My biggest apologies.

  18. Here’s what I ask audiences: “What would you do in a situation like this?”
    You’re seven-years-old. Your father makes you do stuff that’s yucky and scary and confusing. Your mother sees it happening, and won’t stop him. You’re punished for telling the neighbor—who tells your mother. You are told you can’t say anything about it to anyone. Not one word, or people will think you’re crazy, they won’t believe you. You’ll have to leave the family, he says. You can never come in the house again, never see your sisters.
    “Children forget about things like this,” your father tells you.

    1. Susan, these are common themes in repression/dissociation. Severe emotional trauma, deep-seated shame, abuse beginning at a very young age, secrets, and prolonged abuse are all linked to repression/dissociation.

      But you can’t really pose this scenario to anyone who has no personal experience with having repressed/dissociated from child sexual abuse or rape…pose it without getting their lack of understanding

      A mental health expert, who has dealt with this in their patients can understand your question. But even people who have experienced incest themselves, but who have NOT repressed it, often criticize or are skeptical, of those who have repressed sexual abuse and recalled it later in life.

      People who have not experienced either child sexual abuse, or are not a mental health expert who understands the power of the mind, often cannot understand/comprehend the idea of repressing such serious life experiences. My point is, most skeptics will not be swayed by your question.

  19. “Interestingly” I neglected to mention that death threats are strongly linked to repression/dissociation. My forgetfulness to say this is probably directly linked to the many times I was threatened with death with weapons, and hit over the head with blunt objects.

    Another thing I did not put down, which is important, is that repression for incest is often found in people who came from seemingly “normal, “well-functioning families. (reference: Jennifer Freyd and her studies).

  20. ‘People who have not experienced either child sexual abuse, or are not a mental health expert who understands the power of the mind, often cannot understand/comprehend the idea of repressing such serious life experiences.’

    I don’t see why. People, at least those who are interested in the subject, can study the evidence or merely introspect, and they will find that memories can disappear and reappear, and also change; that people can also remember things that didn’t happen, just as they can forget things that did happen. That includes serious life experiences, especially those which occur at an early age. Regarding memory as a sort of infallible video tape seems like a considerable error which does not comport with experience or evidence.

    1. Anarcissie, Yes, those interested in the subject can study the evidence or merely introspect. But skeptics do not wish to look at all the evidence. Introspection is the best way for someone to truly accept the concept of repression, as it is the doorway to an open mind. But those who do not wish to be convinced of anything, will not be.

      Memories do not “disappear” they are all imprinted on our soul. Psyche means “soul.”

      People do not “remember things that didn’t happen” they can be coaxed into *believing* something happened, or their conscious mind can invent something on its own, but we do not “remember” things that did not happen. If they did not happen, there is no “memory” of it in the first place.

      I never said memory is an infallible video tape, so do not attribute that belief to me.

      1. I can assure one and all that I have clear, distinct memories of things that I know didn’t happen. Of course I can’t remember anything that I have completely repressed, but I have also had the experience of remembering fairly important events many years after having forgotten them completely to the point of being unable to recall them.

        If it is true that people reconstruct their memories each time they remember something, then something which had been unremembered for many years and then was recovered might have a kind of clarity and detail that ordinary memories do not. This does not guarantee their accuracy, however, since the original ‘recording’ might have been distorted.

        The brain is ‘designed’ to further the survival of the body it’s in, so if certain memories interfere severely with its ability to function, one could expect to find mechanisms to shut them off so that the brain can continue to function. Indeed, we have cases of people who not only can’t remember certain events but develop whole alternate personalities which appear to have little or no knowledge of each other.

        1. Anarcissie,

          You say you “You say you have clear, distinct memories” of things you know did not happen. That sounds odd. I don’t know anyone who has described such a thing. I don’t think I have had any such experience. This does not mean you have not had this experience, but it is unfamiliar to me.

          How do you know they did not happen? And what caused you to have these “clear” accounts? And if they did not happen, then they are NOT memories, but imaginings of your own mind.

          “People reconstruct their memories each time they remember something.”
          According to whom? I have never done this with the return of trauma, nor have I consciously, to my knowledge, done this with normal memory recall. I might be reminded of something in normal recall, or someone points out an error, but I have not ever “reconstructed” anything that was recalled.

          The accuracy of memories, that have been blocked out for decades, can be determined in a few ways. One, is by corroborating evidence, abuser confessions, and also by physical afflictions that disappear/are healed through direct healing of the memory in psychoanalysis.

  21. In the “What would you do as a 7-year-old?” exercise people sometimes suggest telling their teacher.
    I show them the chart for substantiation rates by state for child abuse reports in 2012 (it’s online). The national average substantiation rates is 9.1%. So your teacher reports, and CPS doesn’t confirm it. What do you do now as a 7-year-old?

  22. Alethea, I don’t know the literature enough to know to which studies you refer, so I’ll have to take your word for it. As for comparing types of memory, why not? I’m assuming that at least some of the memories cited in this, including Tom’s (and why not?) are reasonably accurate – I’ve forgotten things and then remembered them later when triggered, why should I assume anyone else is different? I just don’t automatically assume that memories are accurate representations of events, because I know better.
    Incidentally, I’m not going to take offense at your assumption that the memories I refer to constitute “normal memory” as opposed to trauma. Language is one of the foremost barriers to communication, after all.

    1. John R.,

      I never said that I automatically assume that memories are “accurate representations of events.”

      As far as you “not taking offense” to my comment, what would be offensive anyway?

      And as I read it, you were speaking of normal memory (research shows there is a difference between traumatic memory and normal memory).

      Re-read your comment and see that I would have NO indication that you were talking about traumatic events. You even prefaced by saying you are skeptical. You mentioned remembering “being at an event” –that certainly does not sound personally traumatic at all.

      If you are speaking of traumatic events, then please say so. You can attribute my misunderstanding to your own words, not to me.

  23. Someone who says they have clear, distinct memories of things they know did not happen–I too wonder about that. After 20 years of false memory rhetoric set-ups, I’m skeptical. You remember giving birth when you were six years old? The guy you accused said he didn’t do it? It involved an animal–which Pam Freyd said in 1993 makes it impossible.

  24. I have a memory, as a child of 6 or 7, of seeing two moons in the sky, both the same size and appearance as the moon we usually see. I was terrified by this apparition, which is of course physically impossible. It was probably a dream, but the memory still has a kind of clarity which one doesn’t usually get from dreams.

    Somewhat more recently, several years ago I was at a concert where one of performers gave a little speech from the stage. I have a clear memory of him saying certain things which in fact, according to both other witnesses of the performance and a video of it, he didn’t say. What I remember him saying was actually something a reporter wrote about a different event involving the same performer that I did not attend, which I transferred into my memory of the event.

    I may have an unusually flexible memory, but what I read about the reliability of eyewitness accounts suggests to me that I have a lot of company. Of course, these events were not ones in which I was involved bodily, nor were they traumatic, which seem likely to have some effect on memories, although whether to make them more clear or more confused (or both) is hard to say.

    1. Anarcissie,

      This is what I meant in an earlier comment to someone else, about not mixing normal memory with inter-personal traumatic memory.

      Please do not use, or compare images of a child seeing ‘two moons’ or a concert mix-up with serious inter-personal, violent, terrifying, and deeply shameful memories –connected to deep secrets- of being sexually violated or raped by a once-trusted adult that you had to rely on for survival as a child.

      Even eyewitness account research cannot be compared or measured to the level of betrayal, fear, and emotional trauma involved in memories of inter-personal trauma.

      My point is, please do not assume anything about the memories of others, based on your two moons and a concert.

  25. I see some comments claiming that repression is a well-evidenced phenomenon. I am a memory research, and this is news to me, frankly. I’ll admit that this line of research is not my primary focus, and I might have missed something. Could those claiming evidence for repression cite the 2-3 best (and most recent) articles reporting this evidence? I’d love to take a look. A review article summarizing multiple lines of evidence would be perfect, and I’d be most interested in evidence from controlled experiments as opposed to case studies.

    So we are clear with terms, is “repression” being used to refer to the fact that people are sometimes unable to retrieve memories for a period of time only to gain access to them again in the future? I don’t think you could find any memory research that denies this pattern, and I don’t know of anyone who denies that it can happen even for traumatic events. But there are many well-documented mechanisms that can produce this pattern, including interference and the lack of appropriate cues to access the memory. Repression is a specific psychological mechanism in psychoanalytic theory. Evidence for repression would have to go much farther than evidence that people sometimes lose access to bad memories for a while only to recover access in the future. We would need evidence for the unconscious forces that are supposed to enact the repression, evidence that access to memories can only be regained when the person is psychologically “ready” to face the trauma again, evidence that traumatic events are more likely to be forgotten for a period of time than comparable non-traumatic events, etc.

    1. Jeff,

      Maybe someone else wants to answer this. Personally, my time is extremely valuable.

      If you truly wish to find the research, and seek it with a clean heart, with the intent to find it…you will.

      Start with Professor Jennifer Freyd, Professor Ross Cheit, Jim Hopper Ph.d, Besser van der Kolk MD.., Kennth Pope ph.d, and David Baldwin Ph.d, and the sidran Foundation has much literature.

      I cannot speak for anyone but myself, but when I speak of repression/dissociation, it is in reference to people having repressed/blocked out/dissociated from trauma, incest, emotional trauma, abuse, rape, molestation, or death threats and not having any memory of it, or having partial memory, or having had little or no memory in the past –but who have since remembered.

      “Evidence for repression would have to go much farther than evidence that people sometimes lose access to bad memories for a while only to recover access in the future. We would need evidence for the unconscious forces that are supposed to enact the repression, evidence that access to memories can only be regained when the person is psychologically “ready” to face the trauma again, evidence that traumatic events are more likely to be forgotten for a period of time than comparable non-traumatic events, etc…”

      You seem to dictate what is ‘acceptable’ “evidence” and what is not.

  26. Thank you, Alethea. These discussions come to a point where one person says “I know that my memory is faulty. Here’s an example. Therefore your memory of being raped as a child must/could be faulty too.”
    This logic makes absolute sense to the person with the faulty memory. But here’s the problem. Applying what you know about your memory to someone else’s memory, especially someone who was traumatized as a child–which as we’re finding out impacts brain development–typically isn’t very helpful. helpful. .

    1. Not only is it not helpful Susan, it is harmful to child victims and adult survivors of child sexual abuse who are not believed because of this memory comparison/judgment. It helps the abusers and hurts those who are trying to deal with their memories, and caters to a society that prefers to think these memories must be untrue because they don’t want to believe the subconscious mind has such power, or that they too might have some kind of emotional wound (not always abuse) in their own subconscious, or because they do no wish to know that so many parents are capable of sexually abusing and raping their own children.

      The human denial system and lack of awareness/ignorance is often harmful to children.

  27. The previous contention was that nobody had memories of things that had not happened. Since I have such memories, and suspect others do as well, it seemed reasonable to give my testimony.

  28. Thanks, Anarcissie. And that’s the logical flaw here, an overgeneralization. There’s not enough information here to generalize your experience to others with memories of what didn’t happen. If you, say, saw two moons, that might possibly apply to others who have seen two moons. Then again, it may not. But to say “I saw two moons, and that’s false, so your memory of, say, being raped as a child might also be false”– is an overgeneralization.

  29. People have valid memories of abuse after a period of forgetting, and every case must be evaluated individually. However, it is undeniable that people have grossly distorted and even completely invented memories of abuse. Were Dr. Humenansky’s patients all retrieving valid memories? When they recanted these memories and successfully sued her for malpractice, was this a miscarriage of justice? Are all the memories of PAST lives recovered in therapy also valid? Acknowledging the undeniable evidence of memory distortions (both ecological and experimental) should not be interpreted as a personal affront. “Some memories are false” does not translate to “your memory is false.”

  30. However, I didn’t say that someone’s memory of being raped as a child would be necessarily false. It seems very unlikely but not absolutely impossible. It is also possible that such memories might be confused or distorted. That could become an issue if some sort of social or legal consequences emanated from the memory, as they would probably have to if the alleged perpetrator were still alive and active.

    1. “I didn’t say that someone’s memory of being raped as a child would be necessarily false. It seems very unlikely but not absolutely impossible.”

      If you think that the repression of rape is likely false, then you ought to educate and inform yourself.

      You also ought to educate yourself on the fact that most people who have remembered being raped or sexually abused when they were a child, DO NOT pursue any legal action against the person, or even any “social” action in the sense of going public.

      Most people keep it within their own private circle of friends, or in the therapy setting, because they are too afraid of the consequences of speaking out against the abuser –those consequences are often because of death threats as a child, or because of the consequences of speaking out against a family member, or close family friend. The person who does this is often vilified, cut off from the family, or from the will. They are called names, ostracized, and treated very badly by family members who do not like the family secrets being exposed.

      This happens regardless of HOW the person speaks out…be it privately in a letter to the abuser, or at a family gathering, or with love and forgiveness, or with anger….it matters not to those who wish to keep the family secrets and to not deal with ugly truths being exposed.

  31. On the question of the objectivity of repressed memories, though, the responses haven’t changed much, with agreements hovering between 11 and 23 percent.
    The same data could have been summarized as “On the question of the objectivity of repressed memories, agreement was cut in half.”
    If you have only two data, there can be no “hovering between”.

  32. The Memory Wars
    When did they begin, why did they begin, what does “memory wars” mean exactly, what are the battle plans, who wins and why loses and why, what battle strategies are used and by whom, what are the rules of war, if the battle isn’t about justice v. memory accuracy then what it is about, are there heroes/villains, can we believe all the PhDs who do battle or should they be fact-checked . . . ? Reporters say “memory wars”–but the media has not yet focused on this story in any depth. It could be a very interesting story since, in the long end, it involves the safety of children.

    1. The term “memory wars” needs to be extinguished. It makes a vital, important, and interesting subject out to be a joke. It minimizes the seriousness of child sexual abuse, as well as false allegations of child sexual abuse.

      Susan, people with PhDs do not always hold the only cards of truth. Personal experience often holds more weight than someone’s opinion, who has gone through college and done post-graduate work –opinions based on book knowledge or by doing some experiments on memory.

      The media has, for the most part, not only not yet focused on this story in any depth, but the media has made it out to be a joke, and in the 1990s and early 2000, the media was fueled by the FMSF, who had money and power at the time.

      Not only does this involve the safety of children, but the serious study of repression/dissociation of child sexual abuse, can lead to the root cause and thus, healing, of illness and disease.

      I have healed from countless physical afflictions with the use of hypno-therapy (different from hypnosis). The psycho-analysis therapy I went through healed me of CFIDS, shingles, heart problems, migraines, IBS, back pain, bladder problems, “Restless Leg Syndrome,” and more. Even my eyesight came back with this therapy. I do not need my reading glasses anymore for anything other than very small print.

      The best medical doctors at UCLA and Cedar Sinai in California, and an expert M.D. on CFIDS could not help me. They all told me there was no treatment and no cure for my suffering from CFIDS.

      They were wrong.

      No there’s a human interest story.

  33. Let me me clear: My comment above DOES NOT mean that I am saying all illness and disease is caused by repressed CSA, of incest. I am saying that the repression of serious emotional trauma, or deep emotional wounds, and anger/fear/guilt/ etc. can and does cause illness and disease.

    It is NOT always abuse or sexual abuse in childhood that is repressed. All kinds of childhood wounds are pushed aside in order for the person to continue a relationship with those who hurt the child emotionally or psychologically.

  34. ‘If you think that the repression of rape is likely false, then you ought to educate and inform yourself. ‘

    That is just about the opposite of what I said. If it matters.

    1. It does matter, so let’s clear it up…

      ..so you were trying to convey that it is unlikely the memory is false, or unlikely true?


      1. What I think doesn’t matter because I am neither a scientist investigating memory and child abuse, nor a therapist, nor a person of political powers and influence. In any case, once there is a disagreement about facts, the only constructive course of action is to check the known facts and get more, that is, to practice science, which I am not in a position to do.

        1. “What I think doesn’t matter..”

          Then why did you bother to try and clarify your belief system? Which you never did.

    1. “We might have been spared much of this discussion if the reporter had devoted more time to researching this article.”

      Personally, I enjoyed this discussion. Part of having experienced repression/dissociation for childhood incest, physical abuse, trauma, and death threats, is the joy a person feels when they are liberated from the fear of speaking publicly about it, with their real name, and to do so without feeling intimidated by skeptics, or members of the FMSF.

      I also find joy in attempting to dispel the myths and misunderstandings, and sometimes, outright ignorance, on this subject.

      I won’t always succeed, because people hear what they want to hear, and cannot be convinced of anything they do not want to be convinced of.

      –which is another reason that true memories far outweigh so-called “false memories” of child sexual abuse. It is easier for a victim to believe they were not a victim, and to keep the ‘good’ image of their abuser in their mind, than it is to convince a non-victim that they were sexually abused, or raped, as a child by a person they thought loved them, and had a bonded relationship with.

  35. Like Jeff, I am also a memory researcher,

    Rather than give my own beliefs about repressed memory, I want to invite someone to choose ONE article that provides the best strongest evidence for repressed memory. I will then explain what memory researchers might say about it, again without revealing my beliefs.
    By one I mean ein, un, uno, one, one, ONE study. The best one. I will then look at that premium article and post again here. I only have time to discuss one article, so make sure to pick the best one–the one with the strongest evidence (an empirical rather than a theoretical or argument-based one).

    Do not send me to a website with 20 references, pick one article and cite the authors and year. Perhaps pick a prospective study if you think that gives the strongest evidence, or if you think a retrospective study is better, then pick that one.

    The first relevant citation given will be discussed only–that’s all I have time I can dedicate to this venue.


    1. Laura,

      How would it serve, that someone here should pick what is the “best” evidence, according to *their* interpretation? What would that serve?

      You could provide any article that supposedly refutes the existence of repressed memory, and I could, just as easily, present what an expert in psychology, or memory, might say about it.

      What’s the point?

      Lay people, mental health experts, child abuse case workers, survivors of incest, memory researchers, and perpetrators themselves could debate, discuss, and pick apart research, documented cases, and other evidence for, or against, the repression of sexual abuse until the end of time. How exactly does that help anything or anyone, or any child?

      Anyone can have a belief…Elizabeth Loftus can believe, or disbelieve. The writer of this article can believe, or disbelieve. You, Laura, can believe or disbelieve. None of that refutes, diminishes, or cancels out the fact that repression for trauma has been documented and experienced by countless people.

      I have personal knowledge that it not only exists, but that it can create serious illness and disease in the human body, and that releasing those memories and the emotions connected to them, can heal those very diseases and illnesses.

      You can believe or disbelieve my knowledge about this…it does not make your belief system any greater or any worse than mine…. Even if you hold a Ph.d or are a memory researcher, you cannot personally invalidate my experience or my first-hand knowledge of the human mind, and subconscious mind.

  36. We could look at it this way. Children are raped. Sometimes they repress this, sometimes they don’t.

    1. I think this makes a very complicated issue too black and white. Repression/dissociation is not black and white, and neither is child sexual abuse or rape.

  37. Some facts.

    -Science is not belief. Belief requires “faith,” the exact opposite of science. It you get science right or you don’t. Human “belief” is irrelevant. If you believe you can fly unaided, be prepared for science to painfully disprove you. No amount of arm flapping, “quantum energy,” or belief will save you if you walk off the edge of a building.

    -Loftus is a scientist. Her experiments have been tested and replicated. Real scientists, like Loftus, stand up to testing. They are peer-reviewed not by “believers” but by people who could potentially prove them wrong. They haven’t. In fact the more experimenting that is done, the more Loftus’ research has been shown to be sound. http://scholar.google.com/citations?user=ZNoHqr8AAAAJ

    Ross Cheit has a law degree. He has no research I could find. He runs a blog. In his own blog he cites a book he is writing under “Research.” A book is not research.

    Jennifer Freyd publishes something called “The Journal of Trauma and Dissociation” It has an Impact Factor 1.7 vs “The Annual Review of Neuroscience” 30.17. Does this mean Freyd’s research is not taken seriously in the scientific community? You tell me, when she gives awards to people like this who have published “research” in her journal. http://blogs.dallasobserver.com/unfairpark/2008/08/colin_ross_has_an_eyebeam_of_e.php The journal has many “researchers” who back/backed things like Satanic Ritual Abuse: Richard Kluft and Bennett Braun among them. The latter lost his license for his questionable practices http://www.chicagomag.com/Chicago-Magazine/June-1998/Dangerous-Therapy-The-Story-of-Patricia-Burgus-and-Multiple-Personality-Disorder/

    -Bessel Van Der Kolk???


    The fact is there is no research on repressed memory because it does not exist. The popular “new” terms are “Trauma and Dissociation.” They are hardly new (repressed memory therapy is controversial, and has been shown to be potentially harmful when used with “hypnotherapy.” ). The idea was put forth by Pierre Janet, a contemporary of Freud, who “believed” women suffered from hysteria (same root as hysterectomy) . These are outdated, antifemale, myths. These “beliefs” and have no place in science or healthcare.

    1. Bridget,

      In, The Myth of Repressed Memory, by Elizabeth Loftus, she writes, “Scholars tend to be slightly more circumspect about the numbers, although they agree that repression is a common reaction to trauma”. (Page 145)

      My Webster’s dictionary defines a scholar as one who has done advanced study in a special field, a learned person, or a holder of a scholarship.

      In an interview, Loftus was asked, “Don’t you ever worry that[ you’re protecting pedophiles and molesters?” … “How do you make your judgment call?”

      Loftus replied, “You know, I’ve seen so many of these cases there’s a cookie-cutter quality to them now. But I do wonder,” she admits. “I have these moments when I think, What if I’m wrong about memory.? What if people really do shove this collection of experience into the subconscious and bury them there, and they leak and you can recover them in some accurate form and rely on it? I’m not saying it’s impossible.”
      (The diva of disclosure, memory researcher, Elizabeth Loftus
      By Jill Neimark, Psychology Today, January, 1996)

      Sorry Bridget, but there is a difference between a belief and a knowing. Science can be right or wrong, it can be disproven years later, and certainly with the subject of repression/dissociation it can be wrong.

      I don’t “believe” repression exists, I KNOW it does. You should update yourself Bridget. “Repressed memory therapy” has nothing to do with hypno-analysis, and the latter has been proven to heal serious diseases and illnesses.

      There are many M.D.s that utilize it, or refer people to it. There are also medical hypno-analysis centers where the work is taught to psychologists and M.D.s Hypno-analysis not belongs in health care and scientific study, but one day, “modern” medicine is going to have to bow down to quantum science and mind-healing because pharmaceutical drugs are killing people, and surgery can kill people, and neither get to the ROOT cause of disease and illness, which is usually rooted in THE MIND.


  38. I meant to say, “hypno-analysis not only belongs in health care and scientific study, but one day, “modern” medicine is going to have to bow down to quantum science and mind-healing…” I left out the word “only.”

  39. Alethea,

    You’ve wandered far and wide of your own claims. First that there are “repressed memory” studies to back-up your incessant spamming. There are none.

    Second, that the people you listed are “researchers.” See links.

    You say I should “update myself” and then reference publications (out of context) that are nearly two decades old, but let’s take a look at them. Loftus was questioning, not endorsing, the idea that repression comes out of trauma. What’s bizarrely ironic is that the same page at that quote contained references to Bessel Van Der Kolk who did enjoy a stint at Harvard until his research was exposed as fraudulent. See link above. Richard Kluft is referenced in the article containing your other quote. He linked dissociation with Satanic Ritual Abuse. This is myth, not research and has resulted in one of psychology’s darkest hours as woman after woman got pushed down a well by these gurus and their followers (often poorly trained social workers) who let the fears of suggestible women run wild under the belief they were discovering all sorts of abuse in these women’s pasts that had been “repressed.”

    Hypno-analysis is a form of hypnosis. Highly suggestible people are prey by definition. There are scales for such things. Google: “Harvard Group Scale of Hypnotic Susceptibility” and the “Stanford Hypnotic Susceptibility” Scales. If you score high on the scale and want to use therapies like this to stop smoking, great, you’ll probably succeed where others who do not score well probably won’t. But if you use such therapies to “explore” your past, you are risking harm, especially at the hands of a “repressed memory” believer therapist. Your entire childhood can be reimagined in ways that can never and will never be corroborated, because they exist only in your mind. Your siblings and parents who lived under the same roof will be shocked and the things you and your therapist dream up while you are looking “for answers” on “your journey.”

    Alethea, I’ve read your writings. All I can say is I am terribly, terribly sorry. You discovered your “memories” in the mid-nineties when it was all the rage to use these Freudian myths on women. It’s destroyed so many lives. Your guru is a gnostic numbers lover not a “researcher” of any sort. I really, really take issue with women who sell other women down the river with this idea that they are empowering them and while spouting gibberish like “quantum science” and rattling off the buzz-word laden heroine and liberation mythologies (interesting your *therapist* identifies with a Knights of Templar like organization). Meanwhile their “patients” loose their jobs, their families and become part of communities (online and off) that shun critical thinking.

    I respect Loftus for standing up to this Janet/Freud half-baked *subconscient* BS that has been floating around in psychology ever since bearded old men sat around smoked cigars and discussed how women were hysterical and spirit possessed. Unfortunately, the ghosts of Freud,Janet, and Jung remain, along with the women many of whom are now middle-aged wandering around, shades of their former selves before they entered therapy.

    That the APA has not cleaned up or taken any responsibility for this mess is a shame. Peace, Alethea.

    1. Bridget,
      If you wish to believe the evidence for repression is not good enough, that is your prerogative. I have no need to try and convince you of anything.

      So what if what Loftus said is nearly two decades old? Has she retracted those statements?

      People like you always bring up Satanic Ritual Abuse when confronted with the reality of repression. SRA exists. You can deny it all you want to. It is no problem with me. I don’t care if you don’t believe in it. That again, is your prerogative.

      I know nothing personally about these “gurus” as you label them. I am grateful that I never encountered one of those poorly trained social workers or psycho-therapists who have enabled lies, confusion, and abuse being confabulated. I know this has sadly happened to some people. How many? We will never know. That fact does not cancel out all cases of repression.
      You don’t have any idea what you are talking about with regards to the hypno-analysis therapy I have had. You are ignorant to it, and “Google” will never educate you on it.

      There is no harm in what she does. It is safer than any kind of conventional therapy, behavioral therapy, RX drug, or what any Harvard-educated psychiatrist can do.

      I never went “looking” for anything in my childhood. Nor did my therapist ever suggest, hint, or even mention incest to me. I never even heard of “repressed memory” until it happened to me personally.

      If you have read my Blog and all you can say is that you are “ terribly, terribly sorry” then you are either a perpetrator yourself, or you are someone with pedophilic thoughts, or you are one of those false memory syndrome whackos who troll the Internet looking to try and get people like me into your FMS cult-like mentality.

      Let me tell you something “Bridget” –if that is even your real name.
      My therapist has an extremely impressive background, with a history of culture and knowledge that you will NEVER know in your lifetime. She has helped people heal from suffering that would have killed them, or that would have had them take their own life. She has healed people from all kinds of physical diseases and illnesses that doctors say have no cure or treatment. If you are “terribly sorry” about that, then what is wrong with you as a human being, that you would not be happy for someone to have healed from their physical and psychological suffering?

      Ask yourself “Bridget” what kind of a person would not want to know more -to educate themselves- in order to help others to heal in such ways…instead of what you do…which is to label others, and use condescending tones.

      Regarding The Knights of Templar: she does not “identify” with them, she was made to be a member, which, if you did your research, you would find it is a high honor, and not too many people are asked to join them. It is an organization that is based in things of a higher nature –things YOU would not understand with your limited thinking and closed mind.

      You say you “respect Loftus” maybe you ARE Loftus? Posing as “Bridget.”
      You wish me “peace” when you don’t even know what true peace is “Bridget.” You find true peace within yourself, as wisdom means ‘knowledge from within’ not from without.

      Look inside yourself for true peace, and stop trying to find ego-based ‘peace’ by personally insulting me or my therapist.


  40. I wonder about writers like Hughes who set up these “memory war” discussions. These writers rely on Loftus’s claim there is no research supporting recovered memories. And ignore all the research on corroboration and prevalence for recovered memories.
    Do these writers even know how many adult in the US were molested as children? Could they list half a dozen of the most common consequences of incest for victims?
    Do these writers count the number of people who post? Count the number of posts? Compare their numbers to others? See just how far “their” commenters will venture into ad hominem attacks? Brag about this in newsrooms?

  41. I have allowed “Bridget” to entangle me in an error on my part. I hastily passed over the fact that Bridget attributed my therapist to “The Knights of Templar” I neglected to correct Bridget.

    She is a Dame of Honor of the Sovereign Order of Saint John of Jerusalem, Knights Hospitallar. http://www.sosjinternational.org/

  42. Tom Arnold – thanks for participating in this discussion! You are one of my heroes, by the way.

  43. Alethea wrote:

    “I have allowed ‘Bridget’ to entangle me in an error…”

    Notice the wording, as if I am at fault for your confusion. Please reread. I wrote the word “like” after Templar. Pope Clement sought to merge the Knights Templar with the Knights Hospitaller – they were very much *like* each other. They both figured large in the crusades…killing in the name of Christ. The Knights Templar were tortured and killed and their property given to the Hospitallers by an order from Pope Clement V. Nice heritage. Why any “therapist” would want to align with such an organization is beyond me.

    This has nothing to do with mental health but seems an attempt by someone to boost worth in the eyes of those who would be impressed by such things. It just underscores my point of how myth-making has passed/ is allowed to pass off as therapy these days.

    Child abuse exists. It’s a horrible, horrible thing. The notion that the mind buries such trauma to protect itself is a myth dreamed up by Freud and Janet. The mind works just the opposite way, the more traumatic a memory, the harder it is to forget. War vets and holocaust survivors (children at the time among them) will tell you that.

    And, Susan, clearing up the many erroneous claims posted here does not constitute homineum attacks. Claiming that people who do so or that those who conduct research that does not support the notion of repressed memories are pedophiles is. It’s sad that those who have no facts to cite on the subject feel they have to resort to such tactics.

    1. Bridget,

      You say war vets and holocaust survivors don’t repress trauma or their experiences? I found research where they have indeed repressed their memories. Maybe you have not researched hard enough?

      But there are many reasons the person remembers being in the war.
      It was common knowledge that imprisonment had taken place and the victims had each other to validate what happened to them. In addition, confirmation of the camps was provided by those who liberated the war prisoners and by historical records.

      Survival for incest victims often requires repression in order to be a part of the family, to receive some kind of love, and to keep the perpetrators from going to prison.

      In homes where incest is taking place, family members are usually behaving as if everything is normal and the mother might even specifically tell the child that the she or he is lying or mistaken about the abuse.

      Many times the child is told by the perpetrator that the abuse is a dream. The child thinks, “No one sees this, no one acknowledges this, no one helps me, and everyone acts as if nothing is happening, maybe it isn’t.” The victim’s reality becomes completely twisted. The child’s truth is not their own, it is guided by what family members tell them.

      Incest is done in secret; there are no tattoos and no documented paperwork. There are rarely photographs, diaries, or people with whom the child could have related to and cried with. Most of those who recovered memories of incest were not rescued or let go, and survivors almost unanimously report that there was no validation, only silence.

      The tormentors in the war were not trusted family members and there was no secrecy about the crimes within the prison camps. Prisoners of war did not go to school, to the office, or to social parties during their time in the camps and then later return to being victims of war crimes after the normal activities had ended. They did not take vacations with their perpetrators, or go to church or a synagogue with them.

      In addition, people rarely tell victims of war they were never imprisoned and that it was their imagination. More importantly, friends and relatives of war crime victims do not coerce them into thinking that their captors were “good” hardworking people who loved them.

      People who endure prison camps don’t normally have the same level of interpersonal shame and guilt that a victim of child sexual abuse does. Even if guilt and shame had been a factor during the camp imprisonment, it was not a secret guilt or a secret shame. Incest and child sexual abuse involves deep humiliation. It is a dirty secret that was perpetrated by a loved one, or trusted care-giver.

      Children of war were not being raped by a parent and they did not engage in family meals, celebrations, or loving moments with their victimizers. They did not have to deal with the confusion that a child of incest endures when they try to find reality in the midst of two different worlds. One world is full of pain, rage, fear, betrayal, guilt, and isolation. The other is one of birthday celebrations, Merry Christmas dinners, movies, popcorn, and trips to Disneyland.

      Bridget, you need to notice your own wording, your intent, and your neglect to properly cite the correct organization that my therapist belongs to. Please take responsibility for “my confusion” as you put it. You were the one who wrote, “a Knights of Templar like organization.”
      You did not have a clean heart when you wrote this. You were being disingenuous by deliberately getting into the organization in the way you did in the first place, and to now bring up its history (as if many long-standing organizations of all religions don’t have the same kind of history) shows you are trying to attack the character of my therapist when you don’t even know her, have never met her, and have never once studied or interviewed her clients or cases.

      This issue has not been my “attempt to boost worth in the eyes of those who would be impressed by such things,” it was to defend the character and reputation that you so easily attempted to attack. You began the assault on her character Bridget, not me. You brought her up in a personal way, not me.


  44. Bridget-I have been involved in the memory wars for 20 years as a falsely accused father. One of the few certainties is that you cannot change the mind of a True Believer with logic or science. The only hope for most of them is that they will, after the passage of enough years, realize they have been misled by zealots. Outsiders to their fallacious belief system cannot change them as they self destruct. So many good women have been destroyed by this nonsense!

    1. Here’s the difference between you and me Carr. You believe everyone who has remembered previously repressed child sexual abuse are lying, have been duped by a therapist, or have made it up on their own.

      I believe that there have been many falsely accused people, but that many many memories are true.

      You label individuals like myself as “true believers” yet you are the one with a closed-minded, “if you don’t believe things my way, you are nuts” attitude.

      You should label yourself a “true believer, instead of those you wish to persecute and belittle.


    2. Thanks, Carr. I don’t expect to change the minds of those who have been lost since the 90s to repressed memories. I merely wanted to point out the shortcomings of the *evidence* for repressed here for anyone reading. Most of the sources cited in support of RM have been thoroughly debunked. Sadly, many of these women will remain estranged from their families and fact. I am sure it’s little comfort to you, but the amount of women subjected to this belief system seems to be declining as professionals realize the hazards of searching for the answers to present issues in session after session of narrative childhood recall/reconstruction (often to the age of single digits) – largely a 100+ year old Freudian model. I am truly sorry for your situation. That many women (and men therapists too) did this to other women under the guise of healing really concerns me. If one puts trust in a therapist, one should not end up like so many of these women have.

      1. Bridget-I thought you might like to know just how serious the effect of false accusations can be. My beloved wife of 47 years finally grieved herself to death 3 and 1/2 years after our daughters made their false accusations against me and cut off all contact with us. She was in such a state of grief it compromised her immune system, caused pancreatic cancer to develop, and she died in agony January 11 of 2013. They would not even come to her memorial. I note the True Believers here even had to play the “you must be a pedophile” card if you object to being falsely accused. There is simply nothing anybody can do with people caught up in the delusions and lies brought on by repressed memory therapy. .

  45. Carr demonstrates one of the rules of the memory wars. If someone says he is falsely accused of incest, we must believe him. We don’t fact-check what he says. We don’t track down his accuser and ask for evidence. We are remarkably unskeptical when someone tells they were falsely accused.

  46. No one took me up on my earlier offer. Could someone who believes there is good empirical evidence for repressed memories please choose the strongest peer reviewed article so that I can discuss what a memory research might say about that evidence. Just one article though, cited with authors and year, because that is all I have time for.

    1. To Bridget and Carr, and all those who believe as they do:
      You never see your own hypocritical belief system.

      You chastise all therapists who have helped people heal themselves and change their lives, and you label them as zealots or evil, or as dangerous. Yet you accuse me and my therapist, and others like her, of being what you ARE…which is people with black and white thinking, who attack the character of others without proof, and you close your minds to any evidence that contradicts your belief system.

      You use condescension towards anyone who has experienced what I have, by making us out to be “lost” or down-trodden, someone to “feel sorry for.” You say it is “women” who have ‘fallen into this’ situation, yet, many men have also remembered being sexually abused as children after having repressed it for years (Ross Cheit and Frank Fitzpatrick are well-known cases where their abusers confessed).

      Carr and Bridget say they are “concerned” that ‘so many women’ have been “destroyed.”

      You are so ignorant and so unaware of your own problems, your own dysfunction, soul-sickness…that you have erected yourselves to be judges and higher than those whom you so easily condemn as being lost and destroyed.

  47. Bridget, Carr, Loftus and others like them would prefer I retract my memories and go back to the life I used to have….

    My life prior to therapy is as follows: I was bed-ridden, suffering from untold numbers of physical afflictions that affected my heart, neurological system, bladder, lungs, lymph nodes, and just about every other part of my body. I was also experiencing repeated outbreaks of shingles and seeing countless medical doctors at Cedar Sinai and UCLA, with bills totaling $30,000….all to be told by these highly-educated M.D.s with certificates on their wall –told that my conditions were untreatable and incurable. I was only 32 years old.

    Before, and during that time of my life, I suffered from nightmares, waking out of deep sleep without being able to breathe. I had insomnia for years, and sharp vaginal pain that no medical doctor could figure out.

    I had IBS, panic attacks, “Restless Leg Syndrome”), hemorrhoids, stomach aches, and pathological hunger….and many difficulties with my relationship with food.

    When I began therapy, I could barely walk down the street without extreme exhaustion, and could not go outside my house for many days at a time due to phobias and anti-social behavior.

    Fast forward to today: I go mountain-biking at 9,000 feet, snowboard down mountains, and climb to 11,000 feet on beautiful hikes in nature…all with more energy and vitality than I have felt in my life –and to do so at a “middle-age” as Bridget puts it.

    I also do this without the use of pharmaceutical drugs, and I no longer suffer from shingles, or the migraine headaches, or from CFS (or known as myalgic encephalomyelitis. Nor do I suffer from anything mentioned above, except my issues with food, which I am still in therapy for…but one day, those problems with food will also be gone, because this therapy liberates a person from their own dysfunction, from their own self-made prison.

    The best doctors at Cedar Sinai and UCLA could not heal me, or help me, and I stopped seeing them. It was only by releasing repressed traumatic memory, and repressed emotional trauma that I was healed/cured and able to live again.

    Anyone with a clean heart, and a true desire to find truth and to open their mind to possibilities outside their biases and outside their own egos, would say to me, “wow, Alethea, that’s pretty amazing. How wonderful for you that you don’t suffer any longer. How interesting. I would like to know more about your therapist, and this form of therapy.”

    But Bridget tells me she is “terribly sorry” for me.

    Every person has the power to heal, within themselves –even to heal cancer, viruses, auto-immune diseases, heart problems, migraines, eating disorders, gout, kidney stones, and more.

    I think it is pretty sick for someone to feel sorry for me, and to want me to go back to ‘my old life’ when my old life was full of such suffering.

    as I said, anyone with a clean heart would be joyous for me. They would want to know more, or to at least expand their mind to other possibilities –other than their own pre-conditioned/ego-self controlled minds have limited themselves to.

    “The All is Mind. The Universe is mental. ” Ancient Wisdom First Hermetic Principle.

    ~Alethea ….anyone interested in my therapist, or learning more can email me sanjuanangel7@yahoo.com

  48. Those who are able to heal from childhood trauma are those that can “Jump off the cliff and trust that they’ll grow wings on the way down.” They’re our brave ones.
    Twenty years ago, false memory advocates implemented their most successful, and perhaps their most corrupt, self-serving strategy. They decided to educate our youth. They insisted that psychology textbooks portray memories of childhood sexual abuse as faulty, as untrustworthy. And it worked.

    1. Carr,

      At least we are in agreement that anger and emotional trauma can cause cancer. I am sorry for your loss.

      Carr, please now correct yourself. I did NOT say “you must be a pedophile” because Bridget, or yourself, were objecting to being falsely accused. Please re-read what I wrote, with your eyes, not with your mind.

      I said she must either be a perpetrator OR someone with pedophilic thoughts OR one of those false memory syndrome whackos”… I said this because she said she felt “ terribly, terribly sorry” for me.

      You see Carr, you have twisted my words and why I said them. Do you see how you are also guilty of exactly what you accuse me of?


  49. “They decided to educate our youth. They insisted that psychology textbooks portray memories of childhood sexual abuse as faulty, as untrustworthy.”

    Wrote Susan

    Huh? Scientific research is not a conspiracy campaign. You make it sound like a the TX school board like took over psychology. Just the opposite. Laura is still waiting for that research. One study. Just one.

  50. “a the TX school board like took” unjumbled should read” a TX school board like org took”

  51. “Laura is still waiting for that research. One study. Just one.”

    Or maybe “Bridget” is “Laura,” and Bridget is waiting.

    Instead of an article “Bridget.” How about you and Laura address my comments about my medical history and having healed from it. Why don’t you address the fact that you are a hypocrite, and that you don’t have a real intention of seeking truth, but only wish to be self-rightous and to ignore cases where there is compelling evidence, like Ross Cheit, Marilyn van derbur, or Frank Fitzpatrick…or my own case.


    1. Bridget, that is your right, but know that your silence speaks volumes.

      and thank you, I am having a beautiful day today….

  52. Maybe Bridget meant to say I made it sound as if an organization like a Texas school board had taken over the psychology textbook business? Actually, Letourneau and Lewis (1999) do a great job of summarizing psychology textbooks. I just visited the local college and high school to see what textbooks they’re using: Gleitman, and Myers Eighth Edition. Myers p. 389 might well have been written by Loftus’s hypothetical PR person. The potential damaged caused to children by the adult who rape them is buried in the second sentence of a bullet on p. 388:
    “sexual abuse can leave its victims predisposed to problems ranging from sexual dysfunction to depression.” I

  53. Susan, one study. You haven’t produced a single peer-reviewed piece of research to back up your assertions. One study, Susan.

  54. Well, as long as I define my assertions and no one defines them for me.
    •Schmechel, R.S., O’Toole, T. P., Easterly, C. & Loftus, E.F. (2006) Beyond the Ken: Testing Juror’s Understanding of eyewitness reliability evidence. Jurimetrics Journal, 46, 177-214.
    Based on the abstract, potential jurors misunderstand how memory generally works.
    Compare that to the responses reported in the Appendix.

  55. This is an easy-to-understand example of how researchers who do not support repressed memories will report their research findings on memory–when their research findings do not support their theory. So compare the abstract in Schmechel et al. to the responses reported in the Appendix and see what you find. This study, by the way, was what AG Fitzgerald busted Loftus on in the Scooter Libby hearing.

    1. Again, Susan, how is your post validating repressed memory? Here was the statement:

      “ONE article that provides the best strongest evidence for repressed memory.”

  56. Susan, I feel you are wasting your precious time.

    You might make better headway if you ask Bridget to provide a study that gives scientific proof of a “false memory syndrome.”

    Bridget has no intention of being honest with herself, so she will never be honest with anyone else.

  57. Possibly Elizabeth Loftus is basing her personal disbelief about the repression of trauma and incest –basing herself in her experience with having been molested by a babysitter.

    Elizabeth Loftus says the babysitter “fondled her and that she never repressed, nor forgot the memory. “

    She says it “affected her deeply,” but she chose to “leave it in her past.” Adding, “I think that’s where it belongs.”

    I assume Dr. Loftus is not under the impression that she feels every abused child should ‘put child sexual abuse and incest in the past?’ Or that all who have suffered child sexual abuse and trauma should just “let it go” and “move on with their lives” as many people so ignorantly put it?

    According to the account of Dr. Loftus, she was not raped, threatened, choked, and forced to engage in heinous sex acts with her own father with no protection from her mother. She was not threatened with death, or repeatedly sexually molested over a period of time while everyone behaved as if nothing was happening. According to her own account, she was not forced to keep the secret under penalty of death.

    So maybe for Elizabeth Loftus, putting it in the past is possible. Maybe she did not repress her experience because, according to her own words, it was not a traumatic incident.

    She say it “affected her deeply.” This could merely mean that she was not traumatized, but that she has indeed repressed the emotions connected to it, but not the incident itself.

    My opinion is that Loftus was not sexually “abused” in the true sense of the term, and she was not traumatized; therefore, there would not be any trauma-induced repression.

    Definition of trauma: A personal experience with an event that involves either witnessing or being a victim of death, of a death threat, or serious injury. Witnessing or being a victim of an event that includes intense fear, horror, or feeling helpless.

  58. It’s not that repressed memory research is so good—which it is, short of actually traumatizing a child and seeing what they remember. It’s that false memory research is so, at best, faulty. I’ll use examples from Elizabeth Loftus who transforms being held accountable for her misrepresentations—into martyrdom. .
    1.Loftus, E.F. & Burns, T.E. (1982). Mental shock can produce retrograde amnesia. Memory and Cognition, 10, 318-323.
    Compare the abstract to the results on p. 320. The conclusion is based on the irrelevant number on the back of the shirt. Other eyewitness results weren’t impacted.
    2.Schmechel, R.S., O’Toole, T. P., Easterly, C. & Loftus, E.F. (2006) Beyond the Ken: Testing Juror’s Understanding of eyewitness reliability evidence. Jurimetrics Journal, 46, 177-214.
    Compare the abstract to the results on p. 211. Potential jurors actually have a good understanding of eyewitness reliability evidence.
    3.As for the mall study, Loftus consistently says false memories were implanted in a quarter of the 24 subjects. That’s just not true. The original results were 2 of the 24—not enough to be other than a “by chance” result. Loftus reported the 2-subject result to the HSC and at a conference reported by Goleman at the NYT. The article was reprinted in the June 3, 1994 FMSF newsletter–search “Goleman.” http://www.fmsfonline.org/fmsf94.603.html
    The original mall study results had to be increased so they would stand up in court. The study was published in 1995 with a 6-subject result.

      1. “Bridget” please provide one article that provides the strongest evidence for a false memory syndrome.

    1. ” I’ll use examples from Elizabeth Loftus who transforms being held accountable for her misrepresentations—into martyrdom. ”

      Elizabeth Loftus is not a martyr in any shape or form, by anyone’s standards. A martyr is someone who gives up their LIFE, or who suffers physical torture in order to not renounce God.

      In my opinion, Loftus has expressed/displayed a victim-like mentality with regards to her research work.

  59. Am I missing recent events, or is it not true that psychogenic amnesia (Dissociative Amnesia/repression) is still listed as a condition in the DSM-IV, and that “False Memory Syndrome” is not?

  60. So which one article do you guys want to put forward as evidence?

    I genuinely am trying to help and if you notice I have not engaged in any arguments here, nor will I.

    My beliefs on this matter are mute, and I like people who believe in repressed memories and those that don’t–so don’t assume I am not on your side.

    1. Laura,

      I don’t know your position, or who you are, but I have to tell you that your request for an article does come off as a bit pompous. Even more so, that you say you have “not engaged in any arguments here, nor will you”…as if you are somehow above ‘that.’

      What you perceive as an “argument” is being engaged in by me because I will not cater to untruths, and demeaning comments made about myself or someone who I hold high regard for.

      I engage for the sake of the silent readers who should be made aware of things they may not have ever heard of, and to not remain silent when children, and adult survivors of child sexual abuse can be helped by something I say..

      That I engage is neither right, nor wrong. Your choice to not engage in certain discussions is your right, but please don’t think you are better than anyone else by not joining the “arguments” as you call them.

      I call them important dialogue. It’s important to me, and maybe others that don’t comment.


      My beliefs on this matter are mute, and I like people who believe in repressed memories and those that don’t–so don’t assume I am not on your side.

  61. It’s not the Joan of Arc-type martyr Loftus compares herself to, it’s the Schindler-type. As Boston Globe reporter J. P. Kahn wrote in December 1994:
    “I feel like Oskar Schindler, “ Loftus muses, referring to the German financier who rescued doomed Jews from the Nazis. ‘There is this desperate drive to work as fast as I can.”
    Apparently, for Loftus, those accused of molesting children are like Jews at risk of being sent to their death in the concentration camps.

  62. “I feel like Oskar Schindler, “ Loftus muses, referring to the German financier who rescued doomed Jews from the Nazis. ‘There is this desperate drive to work as fast as I can.”

    I think this quote is pretty egotistical, self-aggrandizing in a very gross way.
    Apparently, for Loftus, those accused of molesting children are like Jews at risk of being sent to their death in the concentration camps.

  63. oops. Sorry Susan. I included your words on my last comment. I did not mean to do that. My apologies.

  64. My apologies to everyone…I neglected to delete Laura’s sentence in my comment above. I am SO sorry. I really will watch that from now on. It can be confusing.

  65. I find this debate about research, and desire to debate about “one” article or “one” research study to be nothing more than a few people wanting to feed their ego, not to truly help others. (the word ego does not always reflect arrogance. read about the human ego, it runs people’s lives and it causes most of the lack of love and the disharmony in the world).

    People can argue/debate/have discussions about this topic to the point of total uselessness.

    If Carr, Bridget, Loftus and Laura truly want to help others, then they ought to study cases where there is corroborating evidence, abuser confessions, and where a person has healed their lives in extraordinary ways and gone off to become healthy human beings with goals -or have gone back to college -or just gone on to do public speaking or have written books to help others.

    Each case needs to be taken individually. The closed minds and rigidness of Carr, Loftus and Bridget…(we don’t know about Laura), have them so blind they cannot see their own ego-centered limitations and thus, they truly help no one. Except, maybe Loftus helps those she is hired to testify for in abuse cases…and how many of those people are child sexual abusers? If people are honest with themselves, they would admit that some of those whom Loftus has defended are indeed sexual abusers of children.

  66. Alethea, you’re right. There are dozens of corroborated cases out there, 20 studies showing that recovered memories can be corroborated.
    There is a study comparing the trauma and fantasy models for dissociation that might work. However, the discussion is not yet over on this study. REF: Dalenberg, C. J., Brand, B. L., Gleaves, D. H., Dorahy, M. J., Loewenstein, R. J., Cardeña, E., Frewen, P. A., Carlson, E. B., & Spiegel, D. (2012, March 12). Evaluation of the Evidence for the Trauma and Fantasy Models of Dissociation. Psychological Bulletin. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1037/a0027447
    The response (as follows) was rejected by the Bulletin as unscientific and it took them a year to revise it. REF: Lynn, S.J., Lilienfeld, S.O., Merckelbach, H., Giesbrecht, T., McNally, R., Loftus, E., . . . Malaktaris. (2014). The trauma model of dissociation: Inconvenient truths and stubborn fictions: Comment on Dalenberg et al. (2012). Psychological Bulletin.
    Dahlenberg et al. have responded to Lynn et al., but that paper is not yet out.

  67. Susan you wrote there are “20 studies showing that recovered memories can be corroborated.” Could you or Alethea pick the strongest empirical one so we can examine it here?

    As far as I am aware there are retrospective studies that ask participants about their past recall and trauma, and prospective studies that take documented accusations or evidence of abuse and then track down the participants later. It is these type of data-based studies that I am asking you to pick (rather than a review or a discussion of a number of studies)–I mean one of the original data studies.

    Maybe Dalenberg et al. (2012) mention one that you could choose, although by the title the subject might be slightly different.

    1. “Could you or Alethea pick the strongest empirical one so we can examine it here?”

      As I said in my comments above, I am not commenting in this thread to debate research, nor do I have a need to convince anyone of anything. Please don’t include me in your request. Thanks.


  68. Dalenberg et al. is your best bet–it’s the broadest-based. And it’s online for a relatively modest fee, I believe.

  69. I have Dalenberg et al. (2012) and it reviews evidence it is more abour the relationship between reports of past trauma and scores on the dissociative experiences scale. It is fine with me if there is an association, or not. It is not one of those papers that directly tried to find evidence for repressed memories.
    Dalenberg et al. (2012) is not an original empirical study itself, it is a research synthesis and theory paper.
    Is there one one original empirical paper I could look at?

  70. Dalenberg, Brand, Gleaves, Loewenstein, Cardena, Frewen, Carlson, and Spiegel (2012) actually conclude there is little support for the hypothesis that the dissociation–trauma relationship is due to fantasy proneness or confabulated memories of trauma. Instead, dissociation is due to trauma.
    For you, Laura, the ideal original empirical paper may be this. A researcher reviews child porn videos. That way we have evidence the child was molested. The researcher then tracks down the now-adult in the video to determine of they are able to recall the abuse.

    1. Thanks Susan.

      And people do not fantasize about death threats, or being locked in closets, or of being beaten up, choked, or having blunt objects hit them in the head.

  71. It’s nice to see some science. Too bad it’s behind a paywall. The issue is a matter of public importance.

    1. Jorge,

      You and I agree that this issue is a matter of public importance. But if you and others focus your belief system, and your energies, on scientific evidence then it is children who suffer in the long run.

  72. Yes, Dalenberg et al. seem to be saying that when you control for scores on the creative experiences scale, there still is a relationship between trauma and scores on the dissociative experiences scale (DES). I don’t know if that holds up or not, but I do know from my own research that it there is a small correlation between past cumulative trauma and the DES. The trouble is DES does not determine dissociative amnesia–all it determines is if the participant is the type of person who forgets their keys or forgets the drive to work this morning–that type of thing.
    There are actually a couple of prospective studies–not of course using child porn, but I do think they used something like hospital records or similar. Pick one and we can talk–other wise this is my last post.

  73. “If people aren’t going to believe 53 year-old me, then who by God is going to believe a child?” ~Marilyn van derbur

  74. Thanks Alethea! And Marilyn’s father even confessed and her sister always remembered the abuse. (See People, 1991)

    1. Yes Susan, and if anyone with a true desire to actually LEARN about the mind’s way of repressing -if they would look into the fact that Gwen (who always remembered the incest with their father) says she always hated him and wanted to kill him.

      Marilyn, who repressed the incest with her father, felt no hatred for her father while growing up.

      If the “researchers” and so-called memory “experts” would bother to come off their stool and actually humble themselves for a few minutes, they would come to find (as I have in my research and personal experience).they would come to find that children who repress sexual abuse are often in a psychological hold/bond of receiving a form of “love” attention, human closeness that is needed/desired by the child because she or he is not getting it from the mother, or anyone else in the family.

      Many children feel attached to their perpetrator in a sort of boyfriend/girlfriend kind of relationship. Many children find that their body responds (as Marilyn has openly talked about) to their abuser and the shame and guilt from that can cause repression to be magnified.

  75. This article is interesting. The comments even more so. My memories of my abuse were never repressed- although I have had the same argument waged at me. As a child I never felt safe enough to come forward- as an adult I wrote a book entitled Rabbit Hole and since have had a group of people viciously and relentlessly attack me. It makes me wonder what child would be strong enough to endure such a thing. As an adult, I have found it difficult to say the least- and I know that I would not have had the strength nor the compunction to come forward at a young age.

    Satanic ritual abuse is ALL about human trafficking. That is essentially what was happening at the presidio and McMartain- although most of the time it gets left out that 7 other daycares- including a Long Beach Catholic Church were also involved in the area with the same charges.

    It seems to me that people expect children to document their abuse when it happens- and keep evidence like Monica Luinsky (sp.) in order to prove it. People who abuse kids play a lot of head games with the kids to inflict fear, guilt- and worse shame in order to control the child. To say that we aren’t able to remember adequately our memories of abuse is ludicrous- and only helps the perps retain their anonymity and protection.

    Loftus lost a lawsuit which took her out of Washington and into Oregon which most people just ignore- and is taught in schools as what NOT to do with clinical applications. Here first experiment leaving a child in the mall would not even be allowed by today’s standards. The False Memory group claims that people do not remember their past’s adequately- however- some of us were so filled with fear and shame that we kept quiet out of necessity. Some of the comments in here show why- and it takes a special kind of adult- let alone child- to come forward and tell of their abuse when the backlash for doing so is so harsh.

  76. First, this article (study?) is common to all ‘backlash’ – false memory, syndrome ‘True Believers’ research. None of their research is empirical or even valid. What happened to random samples, variables, or even a sample large enough to represent the general public. Come on. How does this work? Does Loftus and her cohorts lack the education or knowledge of how to research properly, are they simply lazy, or are they relying on publicity to ‘sell’ their research as ‘scientific’ or valid.

    I mean attend to how they use bar graphs, percents, and very low samples. You don’t ever hear words such as ‘suggests’. Is this what people call empirical? What we see here is a joke – something a middle school child might do for a science project.

    From this article, “The researchers surveyed hundreds of clinical psychologists, experimental psychologists, psychoanalysts, hypnotherapists, primal therapists, neuro-linguistic programming therapists, life coaches, scientologists…..” HUNDREDS? Are you freaking kidding me – hundreds? How many hundreds – two? Wow – really…..

    I love the study someone here mentioned. I almost hurt myself laughing the first time I read it. “Your memory rewrites the past and edits it with new experiences, study finds” http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/your-memory-rewrites-the-past-and-edits-it-with-new-experiences-study-finds-9109559.html In the study, “researchers at Northwestern University, in Chicago, asked 17 male and female participants to study 168 object locations on a computer screen with different backgrounds, such as an underwater ocean scene or an aerial view of farmland.” Am I just lost in the past or is it clearly unethical to state that a study with 17 subjects ‘proves’ anything, except that you ‘can’ find someone to write a nice big article – as if it represents some true ‘finding’? This is ridiculous, but I see it all the time from these people. They also tend to cite each other circularly.

    This is not science, not news, not valid – it is a ploy to lie to the public – hoping that they will not be aware of how research ‘should be done.’ And, I don’t believe this is an accident – it is purposeful use of the media to taint jury pools and influence public opinion.

    We are talking about brutal child abuse here. If the false memory syndrome followers cared at all about child abuse, it seems they would go beyond their neighborhood or local college for subjects and be able to show a bit more than simple bar graphs and percentages. Their motive is to protect and defend abusers with these studies – NOT to prevent child abuse or help survivors heal. That is evident.

  77. If repressed memories aren’t reliable for the accuser, does it follow that they are also not reliable for the accused.

    So, to say that the man who swears he never molested his daughter could be having a bout of false memory syndrome – remembering only wonderful loving relationships that never happened. I mean, memories aren’t reliable – right? So who do we believe?

    It is your choice – toss a coin – or better yet, realize that child abuse is a reality, study the affects of trauma on children and survivors and report THAT. Because I just don’t see much of that in these type articles. I think the public would be astonished at how many children are abused and the struggles that abuse survivors endure.

    1. Much of the public is aware that there is a lot of child abuse, and one of the things the people want to do is eliminate or discourage it by punishing the perpetrators through the existing criminal justice system. But, according to our laws, this requires that the perpetrators be found and tried based on reliable evidence. There is no doubt that human memory is unreliable to some extent and courts would prefer to have corroborating material evidence, but sometimes only the memory of witnesses is available; sometimes, only the memory of the victim. This is why people are so interested in the peculiarities of memory and why there is so much debate about it.

      There is also the question of whether punishing some perpetrators will discourage others. I am pretty sure most of the perpetrators are already well aware that their activities are highly illegal and could lead to severe punishment. But this is somewhat off the subject here.

  78. Thank you David for a good perspective.

    You are right on when you say people who abuse children use “head games,” but I call it a form of mind control… to inflict fear, guilt,and shame.

    Studies show that death threats are highly associated with repression for child sexual abuse.

    “Some of us were so filled with fear and shame that we kept quiet out of necessity.”…that’s correct. When I made attempts as a child to get help outside the home, I was hit over the head with a blunt object, and threatened with death with a knife to my throat. THAT was a major contributor to my repression,. It kept me alive to repress everything.

  79. “This is not science, not news, not valid – it is a ploy to lie to the public […]… …Their motive is to protect and defend abusers with these studies – NOT to prevent child abuse or help survivors heal. That is evident.”

    Thank you Felicity Lee.

  80. In response to Jorge Cruz Rodriguez: “There is also the question of whether punishing some perpetrators will discourage others. I am pretty sure most of the perpetrators are already well aware that their activities are highly illegal and could lead to severe punishment. But this is somewhat off the subject here.”

    I don’t believe that ‘I’ am off-topic here. In fact, the topic here is the conclusion that we are asked to make based on the study/article presented. How can anyone make conclusion based on an invalid and unethical study?

    You state: “There is also the question of whether punishing some perpetrators will discourage others. I am pretty sure most of the perpetrators are already well aware that their activities are highly illegal and could lead to severe punishment. But this is somewhat off the subject here.”

    Your statement is no more than an attempt to sway us off-topic. Loftus and other false memory advocates are utilized as expert witnesses in trials. Their ‘expertise’ relies on the outcomes of their studies and their qualifications. Loftus enjoys her name in the spotlight as an ‘expert’ in the field of ‘memories’ – though her studies are in question. Her credibility is also in question. The press hides these facts from the public. Juries are asked to consider ‘evidence’ of guilt of a perpetrator based on their ‘opinion’ rather than facts.

    So, I am right on topic. The false memory advocates defend perpetrators by putting into question the victims’ therapist (who should be the expert), and the victims’ ‘memory’ (which should be eye-witness testimony). They spend time publicizing lawsuits of therapists who they claim magically ‘implant memories’ using the same lame studies to try to prove that is even possible – and the public falls for it – again tainting jury pools.

    These ridiculous tactics should never have been effective, but the FMSF ‘fell’ into a gold mine back in the 90’s. They were probably amazed just how effective they could be. The money was not made by the victims suing abusers, but by the FMSF folks who sued and harassed therapists. This harassment not only scared therapists away from treating abuse survivors, but also reminded survivors to remain silent for fear of being abused again by the court system which was meant to protect them.

    This is still happening, but with new research coming forward, the FMSF and their tactics are falling into oblivion of the past mistakes we, as a society, have made. Will they come out of this slump by publishing more bs? I don’t think so. The public is becoming more informed and wondering why child abuse statistics are raging out of control right now.

    You say: “There is also the question of whether punishing some perpetrators will discourage others. I am pretty sure most of the perpetrators are already well aware that their activities are highly illegal and could lead to severe punishment.”

    Wrong – They are not aware that “their activities…could lead to severe punishment.” Not at all. Most are well-organized and know that they can do as they please and never see a courtroom. They ‘know’ that if they do get ‘accused’, they can call for Loftus as an ‘expert’ witness, slam the therapist for ‘implanting memories’, call the victim a liar, and rely on the jury to free them again and again. The abuser becomes the victim – the victim becomes the abuser – tearing apart the poor family with their lies.

    Am I on topic yet?

    1. Well, just going anecdotally, which seems to be the fashion here: We already have a legal system in which child abuse is supposed to be punished severely. I have known several people who told me (or someone else told me) they suffered significant in-family sexual abuse, and in not a single case was the perpetrator punished. (Not because of Ms. Loftus. The victims’ memories were all too intact and available.) On the other hand, I do know someone who went to jail for abusing children, but was later shown to have been innocent — he was frightened into giving a confession to things someone else did. Maybe this is the way the justice system always works, but regardless, there seems to be something wrong with the present approach. However, I don’t think the public is ready to modify it: 1. Pass stringent laws. 2. Don’t enforce them, either because they’re unenforceable, or because enforcing them wouldn’t be nice.

    2. Felicity Lee, you speak with great fervor (which was needed), and I am so happy you made all these excellent points. Thank you, you spoke the truth here. –especially about abusers continuing with their crimes because they know they will get minimal sentences or none at all, or to be supported by people like Loftus.

  81. Possibly, we could start by passing laws that ‘evidence’ such a Loftus’ conclusion based on bogus studies are not inadmissible in child abuse cases. She and her cohorts are not ‘experts’, but paid horse and pony shows. Bringing perpetrators to justice is serious and not narratives for the next made for tv movie.

    Yes, I ‘know’ of many who have been brought to justice.

    I also know of many who would not dare accuse their abusers – ‘never tell’ – is the message abusers leave with their victims.

  82. Jorge,

    Everyone who posts here has some kind of bias involved. You know what mine is. However, I know that many people are falsely accused of sexual abuse. How many? No one knows. But I do know that the vast majority of people who have sexually abused children are walking free –even those who have been convicted of the crime of child sexual abuse, as most of those are free on probation or have been let out of prison after serving short sentences.

    So what’s your bias? That you know someone who was falsely accused of child sexual abuse and served time for that?

    You are wrong Jorge, much of the public is NOT aware that there is a lot of child abuse and incest. Most of the public does NOT WANT to know…..and you may or may not be correct that people want to eliminate or discourage it by punishing the perpetrators through the existing criminal justice system.

    Many people, like me, want tough sentences because we know that the perpetrator is likely to re-offend if let out. We also want to see justice served on people who commit one of the most heinous crimes -next to murder- because it is soul-murder to sexually abuse a child.

    As far as trials being held with reliable evidence….please inform yourself with the fact that the vast majority of cases of repressed memories for child sexual abuse do NOT go to trial of any kind –civil or criminal. Most of these cases involve people like me, who privately accused their abusers, or who never accuse them at all because they have been so conditioned to adhere to the family code of silence, or death threats, or fear of being ostracized from the family.

    Yes Jorge, criminal (especially criminal) and civil trials need to include substantial circumstantial evidence –as do all criminal cases do.

    People, and memory “experts” can be as interested in memory all they want, and can debate about it all they want, but if they truly wish to be educated and help the general public –abusers, their victims, and anyone who has been falsely accused, then they need to be honest with themselves and to inform themselves outside their circle of whatever happens to fit into their belief system/bias.


  83. I’ve been following this but I can’t take much more unless I get some direct answers to a few key issues or questions that people seem to be dancing close to without exactly dealing with in a way that assures me I know how they would answer if asked straight out:

    1) Is it being denied that anybody ever suppresses the memory of a traumatic event such as child abuse, memories which can be revived later, by hypnosis or some other means? Or is it a difference between “this happens rather frequently” and “this is very rare”?

    2) If it is the latter, do we really need scientific studies, or is/isn’t there at least one or more cases that have been well-documented of people remembering traumatic events they had repressed (would it help to say “forgotten”?) and were verified by confessions or other corroborating evidence?

    3) Nobody is claiming that all “repressed memories” are valid, right? Those on the “pro” side don’t believe ALL the stories, including all the alien abductions and past lives, right? It’s just that you think there are a lot of cases being swept under the rug, because child abuse with repressed memories happens… how often, exactly, or more or less? And how much of which kinds of therapy do you think are thoroughly reliable? Isn’t this where a LOT of serious scientific study needs to be done before we can have a lot of confidence?

    4) Apart from some kind of scientific understanding of exactly how repression of memories come about and are recovered, how do you propose society (and the courts) respond to claims of repressed memories of child abuse when there isn’t any other evidence? How do you distinguish “a conspiracy of silence” in an entire family from honestly shocked innocence? Even “lie detectors” aren’t always admissible in courts, right?

    5) One contributor seems to be claiming that healing from mysterious ailments is proof that she really was abused. If not, exactly how significant is this effect supposed to be considered? If that is what is being suggested, are the many, many cases of healing by various supernatural means all to be taken as proof of what is being claimed? Mind you, I don’t myself deny the possibility of supernatural healing, but there are many different claims — casting out demons, having faith in different things or spirits or gods, the “psychic physician” being possessed by a spirit of one kind or another — vast numbers of these are plain frauds and fakes, but I know there are cases where the before and after medical tests show a real healing, but do even these mean that the claims about the cause and the means of the cure must be true? Might it not be that something as powerfully cathartic as the belief in release from a past trauma could have the psychosomatic effect of curing psychosomatic ills brought about by other kinds of stresses?

    In short, isn’t it irresponsible to argue that there are no such cases if the possibility exists that there could be, and there are at least a few cases that appear real, just because we haven’t pinned everything down scientifically yet? And on the other hand, isn’t it moot to argue that such things happen often if there’s no way to show just how often the memories are real, and how to tell from one instance to the next which one is real?

    From some of the news stories I’ve heard, there’s plenty of cases to be worked on where the memories were never repressed, and it isn’t helping that our legal system has given up on policing pornography, etc.. At least they still arrest people for contributing to abuse via child pornography, but the numbers on that indicate just how much of this sort of evil is going on in the world. I’ve known of cases of abusive incest and I know of cases of false accusations or suspicion on very little evidence, and of a man being thrown in jail longer than some murderers, for having sex with a teenager who was more than consenting. I’m all for erring on the side of protecting children, but I’m leery of causing suffering because an adult claims long-past harm that they didn’t remember until undergoing hypnosis (or any psychological procedure that hasn’t been scientifically or legally proven highly reliable), and for which there isn’t any other, traditional, evidence.

    1. David,

      You seem to demand “direct answers” as if you are entitled to them in some way.

      Nevertheless, since you addressed my experience directly, I will take the time to answer you about it.

      First off, you should inform yourself on medical hypno-analysis,

      I never said my illnesses were “mysterious.” They were diagnosed as particular serious diseases –diseases that millions of people suffer from, and are on RX drugs for, or merely suffering from these diseases without any treatment. They are told there is no cure for them.

      Many people kill themselves who have suffered from CFIDS, and migraines cause many others to also take their life. Shingles is a VIRUS of the nervous system, and causes severe pain and skin blisters/lesions….I also had heart problems, neurological issues, bladder problems and more physical aliments than can even be listed here.

      People do not heal from physical ailments by creating false memories. If that were the case, then medical doctors could have their patients invent all kinds of false memories and cure their patients.

      My therapist has helped people heal from kidney stones, a breast lump, a virus on the lungs, impotency, gout, and countless other physical afflictions over a forty year span. Many of those people did not have memories of childhood sexual abuse, or even repressed memories. They had other kinds of experiences in childhood that had created the physical ailment. The same method of therapy was used with them as with myself.

      You know NOTHING about what she does, and I will not waste my time going into the entire process, but I will tell you that before I remembered the incest, I entered therapy with no memory of ANY of my childhood. NONE. It was virtually a blank to me, except for a handful of memories, mostly outside the family home. That should tell anyone with two degrees of intelligence, that something was very wrong from the start. People do not block out over a decade of their entire childhood for no reason. Research has shown countless times that trauma induces amnesia.

      When I entered the therapy I was sick and dysfunctional and never heard of repression. My therapist NEVER hinted, suggested, or even mentioned inced to me, The memories came fully FROM me, from my memory.

      The therapy I do is not “supernatural.” On the contrary, it is completely organic, safe, and used by many M.Ds and trained psychotherapists.

      This therapy I do is NOT faith healing. Do not mix this very serious and effective healing with God or religion. That is YOUR own vision of things…your own misinterpretation, based on your own belief system…which comes from wrong information, books, TV shows, or whatever your mind has latched on to.


      1. Aletthea, you seem to have misunderstood my post. Perhaps it seemed to you that I was demanding things, but if you carefully read what I actually wrote you will see there is no demand, only a request for clarification to those who might care that I and others like me were feeling like we were missing something. Not all of us (I’m thinking of all the readers who haven’t written anything) have been involved in, or done extensive research on, this issue, so some things that are perfectly clear to you, needs some explanation or further details for us.

        “I never said my illnesses were “mysterious.” … They are told there is no cure for them. Many people kill themselves… migraines… Shingles … heart problems, neurological issues, bladder problems… more than can even be listed here.”

        Did I say you said the diseases were mysterious? At any rate, they ARE mysterious. Illnesses for which people are told there is no cure are mysterious at least to that extent. Illnesses which are not mysterious at all are generally curable if they are not extremely advanced.

        People killing themselves because they have a disease is tragic, but it does not indicate the disease is not mysterious.

        The CFIDS association of America’s website (http://solvecfs.org/what-is-mecfs/) uses “Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), also known as Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME)” as synonyms and says there are “other names,” and rather than a precise list of symptoms displays a wide array and names the “most common symptoms” among them. It also says “…there’s often a pattern of relapse and remission. Most symptoms are invisible to others, which makes it difficult for family members, friends and the public to understand the challenges of the condition.” “Difficult to understand” things are mysterious in my book (and at least one dictionary definition http://www.learnersdictionary.com/definition/mystery). It is further noted that “…these symptoms are shared with many other illnesses—and because many of these conditions lack a diagnostic test or biomarker… Diagnosing ME/CFS is a challenging process because there is still not one diagnostic test or biomarker that is conclusive. … the symptoms and severity of ME/CFS vary considerably from person to person…” and finally, “…no cause or cure for ME/CFS has been identified, …” If that doesn’t make it mysterious, I’d like to know what would.

        BTW, friends of mine have had this and other mysterious diseases such as lupus, and my sister has migraines, and I see no reason to be upset at acknowledging that they are more or less still mysterious conditions. Even shingles, caused by the common chicken pox virus, is somewhat mysterious as to exactly why it is triggered to activation in some people and not others.

        Also, you go on to describe having several problems not necessarily or usually related to each other, plus “more than can even be listed here.” This is also somewhat mysterious, leaving us in the dark about what all you suffered and how one person could have so many ailments and still live, or live outside an intensive care ward. Unless you’re talking about things like warts, zits, etc., which I do not think likely.

        You go on to argue that false memories can’t heal such ailments, because if they did, “…medical doctors could have their patients invent all kinds of false memories and cure their patients.” I sure hope they wouldn’t do that if it took such traumatic false memories as horrific incest and other forms of sexual abuse. I think it is clear from what I wrote that “all kinds” of false memories would not work, but ” something as powerfully cathartic as the belief in release from a past trauma.”

        You also do not help your case by adding “My therapist has helped people heal from kidney stones, a breast lump, a virus on the lungs, impotency, gout, and countless other physical afflictions… They had other kinds of experiences in childhood that had created the physical ailment.” I wonder if the AMA or any other major medical groups would recommend patients with kidney stones go for treatment of their psychological state. The only cases I can think of where anyone has claimed that one kind of treatment cures so many different ailments is snake oil salesmen and “faith healers.” Which brings us to…

        “The therapy I do is not “supernatural.” ” “That is YOUR own vision of things.”
        No, I did not claim your treatment or the therapy you do was supernatural, I was merely pointing out a similarity or two in order for you to look at what is being claimed without having a personal stake or involvement in it. People have been in terrible physical condition before going to “faith healers” and such, and were in fine health afterwards. If you (and I) don’t believe them when they say they were cured by what they were told or even experienced, why should people believe that you were cured for no other reason than that your abuse was real? I’m not arguing your abuse wasn’t real, I’m just saying that I can’t judge its reality by your being healed.

        “You know NOTHING about what she does, and I will not waste my time going into the entire process, …”
        But learning about what she does, the entire process (in a nutshell, at least), is precisely the sort of thing that exchanges like this should provide to readers, and I thought you’d be eager to educate us. You think it would be a waste of your time to help people understand what has made such a difference in your life? That’s like Christians telling people they don’t want to waste their time sharing their testimony of how Christ saved them and turned their lives around. Are you afraid if people did know exactly what went on, they would find things you don’t want them to know?

        “I entered therapy with no memory of ANY of my childhood. NONE. It was virtually a blank to me, except for a handful of memories, mostly outside the family home.”
        As you say, clearly something was very wrong, and for all I know, it was indeed from abuse, but I couldn’t suspect it from the amnesia any more than you did. It must have been a terrible feeling — when did you first realize you couldn’t remember things? Or at what point did your memories begin? Did those have gaps or seem uncertain until a still later point? “Research has shown countless times that trauma induces amnesia.” Yes, but it can also be caused by disease and physical trauma unrelated to child abuse.

        “My therapist NEVER hinted, suggested, or even mentioned inced to me, The memories came fully FROM me, from my memory.”
        How can we know this? Who fully understands the subconscious mind? Do you believe all claims of memories recovered by hypnosis, including alien abductions and age regressions that lead to memories of past lives? Or have you since found other reasons to trust these memories? Have your siblings had similar health problems? Were the reactions of family members indicative of guilt, knowledge of ugly secrets, etc.? How about school records showing frequent absences due to “family issues” or frequent illnesses? How about your medical history? These are the sorts of things that could bolster your case to those for whom time travel or mind-melding with you is impossible.

        A lot depends on what goes on in hypno-analysis, which you only describe as “completely organic, safe, and used by many M.Ds and trained psychotherapists.” I have no idea what you mean to convey by “organic” — anything involving biology might be called organic. Nobody is saying it is not safe, at least not in the sense of causing physical harm or insanity. “Many” M.D.s endorse things that are controversial at best, and I’m not impressed by psychotherapists, even trained ones, and there are medical professionals who are similarly skeptical.

        Do any medical organizations besides those promoting this treatment recommend it?

        I’m sorry you didn’t want to “waste your time” telling me about your therapy. Guess I’ll have to take the time to educate myself. It’s easy enough to learn about hypno-analysis. http://www.aamh.com/faqs-for-therapists
        “The most involved form of therapeutic hypnosis is Hypnoanalysis or Medical Hypnosis. This is a form of psychotherapy… Hypnoanalysis allows the client and therapist to work together at the subconscious level to find the root cause of the problem. ”

        So going into this, it is assumed that whatever is being treated has a cause that is buried in the subconscious, which has to be discovered through the patient-therapist co-operation “at the subconscious level.”

        “Often, symptoms are behaviors or responses or mindsets that may have been useful at one time but are no longer serving their original purpose. For example, children often think they are to blame or otherwise misinterpret life events which are actually the responsibility of the adults around them.” … “Therapy time and energy are put into finding and removing the underlying cause of the problem through age regression work. Age regression work means simply remembering the events that first caused the symptoms, understanding the original situation and bringing them to a new light …”
        Yeah, no suspicion that adults did something to you when you were a child could possibly taint this process.

        “What symptoms can hypnoanalysis treat? Hypnoanalysis is used to successfully treat anxiety, phobias, depression, low self-esteem, fear conditions, sexual/physical/emotional abuse, eating disorders, somatic disorders and other Axis I conditions along with emotional, behavioral, psychological and spiritual issues.”

        Oh dear, nothing about kidney stones, breast lumps, viral infections, impotency, gout, or any other physical conditions. Are you sure your therapist isn’t in danger of a major medical malpractice suit?

        Well, I’d hoped to give you a chance to back up your claims, but I’m afraid you’ve only given me more reasons to doubt.

        1. To David Bump,

          You said, “ unless I get direct answers.” This reads as though you are somehow due worthiness and respect for others to spend an hour writing back to you about every question you want answered.

          You asked, “Did I say you said the diseases were mysterious?”

          No, YOU called them mysterious:

          >>5) One contributor seems to be claiming that healing from mysterious ailments is proof that she really was abused.>>

          Illness and disease are only a mystery to people like you David, who do not understand, or bother to look into -or even open your mind to the fact- that the human mind is capable of creating and healing human diseases and illnesses.

          I don’t need your Google search for the CFIDS association of America. I spent years reading about the disease and was a patient of two of the CFIDS experts in the Los Angeles area.

          “… leaving us in the dark about what all you suffered and how one person could have so many ailments and still live, or live outside an intensive care ward….”

          This is exactly why I am writing my book about my experience. I want to help others who have suffered as much as I did.

          If it were not for my therapy, I would be on dangerous prescription drugs that can kill a person, and would have been a recluse-mess, bed-ridden and in pain every day of my life. I most likely would have been dead though, because what I went through with the illnesses would have caused me to take my life.

          “…You also do not help your case…”

          Who are you Mr. Bump, to behave as if you are justified, deserving, or have earned the right for me to make a “case” to you?

          I do not know you, and therefore, my comments have never been to make a case, or otherwise convince you (or anyone) of anything.

          I comment here in order to help others, who may be silently reading these comments, and to counter the ignorance that comes from you and so many others who have commented here.

          “I wonder if the AMA or any other major medical groups would recommend patients with kidney stones go for treatment of their psychological state.”

          The mainstream medical people will not humble themselves before the powers of the human mind, because it would mean they cannot make their money off drugs and surgeries any longer.

          However, there are indeed some very sharp-minded, intelligent medical doctors who understand the powers of the mind, and that hypno-therapy can be of great help.

          I am not going to get into your discussion on “faith healers” because I know nothing about it, and have no desire to look into it. But I do know that if someone goes through some kind of miraculous healing in a religious or spiritual setting, but they *do not heal the root cause of their disease or illness* –if they do not heal the subconscious problems that created the disease to begin with, then they will develop the disease, or an illness of some kind, all over again.

          “You think it would be a waste of your time to help people understand what has made such a difference in your life? “

          It would be a waste of my time to try and write it all out here, and then to expect my words to be read clearly, and for you or anyone else who reads them here to understand them, and a waste of my time to think you would actually open your mind to other possibilities –other than your own limited thinking and perception of the mind, and your own personal biases.

          I have nothing to hide, and I am certainly NOT afraid of exposing my story to the public.You can read my book one day when it is finished.

          If you think you can learn about the hypno-analysis therapy I do by doing a few google searchers, then you are as arrogant as I think you are.

          “Oh dear, nothing about kidney stones, breast lumps, viral infections, impotency, gout, or any other physical conditions. Are you sure your therapist isn’t in danger of a major medical malpractice suit?”

          Gee David, why don’t you ask the physician who found the kidney stones gone, and could not explain it, or the doctor who found the breast lump gone, and could not understand why. Neither of them have filed any such suits, because they saw with their own eyes, and their own medical tests that the lump and stones were gone

          “..but I’m afraid you’ve only given me more reasons to doubt.”

          Who are you that I should need to convince you?

          Doubt all you want, you have not earned my respect in any way or told me anything of importance, or intrigued my curiosity in any way. I only answer you so that others will not fall in line with your limited mind.

          1. Who am I? just an average joe, looking for answers, one of the many people you might hope to reach with your book — but if this is the attitude you bring to searching and questioning and other possibilities, then all your book will convey to others is your own haughtiness and close-mindedness (you apparently still haven’t tried to understand, and seem to be making it clear that you don’t want to, the significance of people with suites of physical problems such as yours recovering from them — and staying that way — by other means). I happen to agree that the power of the mind can affect many illnesses of the body, and the mainstream medical establishment is hidebound and in denial about such things. I was just hoping you would appreciate sharing a bit more about how it worked in your case, if nothing else as a change of pace from complaining about your opposition (and about me, but I guess you enjoy feeling anybody not in lockstep with you is or has some kind of problem, and going on and on about how evil your opposition is). I will give you this, you at least replied to one of my questions, even if it was only to clarify or justify your own statements. I haven’t seen the other side address any of them (I haven’t read all the comments yet), and they were of value and interest to both sides.

  84. First off, if we were having an educated discussion, we would know that there are several types of memories – suppressed, dissociated, traumatic – and as many theories concerning memory. They are ALL theories. No one knows how memory works. ‘Learning’ seems to be commonsense – we associate learned material and grow intellectually according to our experience.

    The false memory syndrome ‘believers’ would like us to concentrate on how memory works only. That does keep us off-topic from the underlying issues – especially with terms like ‘false memory’. How can someone even have a ‘false’ memory – it is an oxymoron. A memory is a memory – there is no such ‘syndrome’ as the false memory syndrome – never has been.

    In this bogus study, the graph takes our attention to the last question, “is it possible to suggest false memories to someone who then incorporates them as true memories?”

    The conclusion made by Loftus, “They [scientific folk] have evidently lost some faith in hypnosis, and have gained respect for the idea of implanting false memories.”

    For a survivor of abuse – as well as the public, what is this telling us? Let’s talk about the conclusion that she is ‘really’ feeding us. Therapists or anyone is ‘able’ to magically implant false memories in people’s brains? She just ‘assumes’ that anyone would fall for such bs. Secondly, she is concluding that some 90% believe this.

    Why would she try to sell the public such nonsense with a totally bogus study? “Hundreds” of subjects is not enough to reflect the ‘targeted’ population.

    Well, we know that she has had charges brought against her http://fmsf.com/apa-complaint.html – that her credibility is in question, she is a member of the False Memory Syndrome Foundation (who have made a literal fortune defending child abusers and suing therapists) – claiming that they had either implanted or suggested false memories to their clients, and that her income comes from expert testimony in such cases (false memory theories always being her ‘evidence’.

    Now, who benefits here? The children who are abused or the survivors of child abuse? No – the false memory folks – obviously.

    And, how does this affect survivors who have certainly been hurt enough – those like me – who have no intentions of bringing charges against my abusers. I would like to be treated as the credible, intelligent woman that I am, rather than being discredited simply because I mention that I was abused as a child – unable to find good mental health care, because either the ‘politics’ prevent clinicians from treating me or they are afraid of law suits. Or, sadly – they were ‘trained’ to follow the ‘false memory syndrome’ theories.

    Now are we getting close to being on topic?

    Yes, everyone has reason for speaking up.

    I speak for the survivors and victims of child abuse who have already been hurt enough without having to deal with the bs that comes out of the FMSF. We don’t benefit financially from child abuse – they do!

    1. I have been through hypnosis times in my life. None of which produced repressed memories- but rather was an attempt to help me with “safe placement” where I learned I could go into myself and ease my tension.

      Felicity is correct- there is no such thing as false memories. This concept only protects the abusers of children- and they have made a TON of money promoting this concept. People CAN remember wrong- but my mother always said- where there is smoke there is fire. Telling ALL children of abuse when they are adults that they are mistaken- or worse, lying- only hurts the victims of abuse and promotes the protection of the abusers.

      2185 children are reported missing a day by the center for missing and exploited children- and yet the false memory people claim this has nothing to do with anything- but are just statistics that fall short- because no one knows what happened to these children- although they are eager to give graphs and such to prove that this condition of human trafficking is not happening.

      This group jumps at the chance to shove EVERYONE’S memories of abuse- esp. that of ritual and satanic ritual abuse- under the table while they go on using inefficient material and studies to try and sway public opinion about memories. However- the thing is that most children who are abused DO NOT SPEAK OF THEIR ABUSE. Out of fear- out of shame- and a myriad of other reasons- until they are safe- generally as adults. As we have seen with Woody Allen- the abusers ALWAYS claim they are innocent- blaming the their victims of lying or being mistaken- although most stories are not only credible- but can be substantiated with facts. Many survivors are not looking for justice against their abusers but rather are just attempting to put their lives back together after their abusive events as children.

      These memories, although not spoken about for years- are not false. Are they one hundred percent factual- no- for many reasons. We do not perceive the world or think as children as adults- and for that reason we may not remember every sordid detail- but that doesn’t make those who remember abuse liars- but rather time heals- and has a tendency to make us forget so that we may survive. Many traumatic events in our lives are repressed simply because to relive them every moment of every day would make life unbearable. Personally- I spent a good many years denying my abuse so stave off the humiliation that I felt with regards to my abuse. Without doing so- I would not have found the strength to survive.

      The false memory mumbo jumbo is nothing more than an attempt to deny child abuse- a fact that NO ONE wants to think about. It does what people naturally want to do- but Felicity is correct when she says that it only feeds and empowers the abusers to keep re-offending. That is the history of the False Memory foundation- as it’s sole job is to make a lot of money suing therapists and shutting down victims of abuse.

      The whole memory argument is nothing more than a distraction- filled with studies of ballons and mice with laser beams on their head. No one truly understands how memory works- because we are all individuals and we each remember things differently. But the truth is that abuse happens- that satanic ritual abuse and ritual abuse (used to dehumanize and degrade a person until they start to believe that they deserve such daily derogation) happens. And again- SRA is more about human trafficking- which 2,185 kids missing a day suggests is happening more than we would like to think. These are FACTS- not studies- not syndromes- but come straight from our own justice department.

      Loftus makes a lot of money being an expert witness when in fact she is nothing more than a charlatan with a lot of shoddy work standing to her credit.

      1. Felicity Lee, David Shurter — By ignoring my questions and simply using them as a springboard for continuing your crusade against the FMS’ers, however noble a cause it happens to be, you have not helped your case in my eyes. Whatever the problems, shortcomings, and outright evil of these people you hate so much, my questions are still worth considering and dealing with on their own merits, as they stand on their own, not quotations or scientific studies of others.

        For that matter, your complaints against the FMSF could use some improvement. It’s been asked what scientific studies have supported the claim that memories completely lost can be reliably recovered by hypnosis or hypnoanalysis, and the request was flatly spurned, and yet scientific studies that have been done, showing alterations of memory, are rejected by you as insufficient. Well, indeed, but isn’t the pot calling the kettle black here?

        And while I know there is a horrendous amount of human trafficking, something so heinous even one case is terrible to consider, you could be more careful in the use of statistics. “2,185 kids missing a day” needs to be broken down — although anybody should realize not ALL of them are being abducted for ritual and sexual abuse.
        ” An astounding 2,300 Americans are reported missing every day, including both adults and children.”

        “But only a tiny fraction of those are stereotypical abductions or kidnappings by a stranger.”

        “…the federal government counted 840,279 missing persons cases in 2001. All but about 50,000 were juveniles, classified as anyone younger than 18.”

        “About half of the roughly 800,000 missing juvenile cases [about 2191 per day by my calculation — DB] in 2001 involved runaways, and another 200,000 were classified as family abductions related to domestic or custody disputes.”

        Sadly a lot of the runaways end up in the sex traffic, but not from SRA, just regular drug pushers/pimps. I have heard of a place in New York where you can see many people dying from the drugs they have been given to keep them in the sex trade, trying to pay for the drugs and get more. Often the drugs were used on them first so they wouldn’t know or wouldn’t resist their being used for sex, and afterwards they are hooked and see no other options. Eventually they are physically ruined and no longer wanted by their masters, and by that time they are too far gone to restore to health. But as to the number that might have been victims of SRA at home or through abduction as children? Must be much smaller, although there’s no telling how many of the runaways were running away from such treatment. Likewise, some of the family related “abductions” may have involved abuse, although again, the number may include good parents taking children from bad. I suspect most of them are simply a matter of kids being pawns in a bad divorce.

        “Only about 100 missing-child reports each year fit the profile of a stereotypical abduction by a stranger or vague acquaintance.”

        If the goal is to help protect children from abuse, you have to be careful about such details to maintain the highest credibility.

  85. Felicity Lee, I’ve just been doing some reading of your posts in another forum. So you support survivors but gave David Shurter a phone number of a survivor and encouraged him to vist her when she lived two states away? Mr. Shurter then detailed about it online. I did a little research into Mr. Shurter as well. Apparently, he claims his parents were high Satanic priests and that he witnessed human sacrifices. His family claims otherwise. I think he also claimed Warren Buffet was in on a child trafficing ring…okay.

    The woman’s son who you had Shurter call posted about the “harassment.” I think it was also detailed someone was warned by UT authorities to stay away from the woman you had Mr. Shurter visit. It involved a vanity published Satanic Ritual Abuse book which got some pretty awful reviews and contained, among other things, a Jewish Nazi ?????? mindcontoller, people who spoke backwards (or at least spelled backwards) and a levitating being. Apparently, you also made some strange claims about the Utah Attorney General’s office which were debunked. Wow, Ms. Lee, very interesting in light of your posts taking issue with science here.

  86. Briget- these are n othing more than lies. I called to set up a coffee date with Jenny so she could meet my sister- and it was the son who wanted to record our conversation that convinced me to say no. Jenny called NUMEROUS times to try and set up something and if anything- she was the one who pushed to meet- and not me.

    Of course my 9 year old half sister says the abuse when I was a child didn’t happen. She is trying to protect her mother by stating that I and all three of my siblings are lying. Although we all say the same things- and have for years. Our half sister ALSO admitted she had been abused- but of course her mother is going to deny any involvement. That is what perps do.

  87. Chris is 9 years younger than I- and was 10 when i left home. What she believes happened to my 12 year older than I and my 16 year older sister and 15 yr older than me brother doesn’t mean anything.

  88. critthink- aka briget- it is interesting that you are again attacking us. Anytime there is an intelligent conversation you come in with gossip and attack. And why? You don’t have a clue what you are talking about.

  89. Memory is interesting. I don’t think my sister was sexually abused but she was physically and emotionally. She has gaps in her childhood memories (she doesn’t remember abuse that was witnessed and the perp apologized for). But, she does say things no one else remembers. Not important things, but nicknames or favorite foods. I think she does fill the gaps but it is with happier things.

    I was sexually and emotionally abused but I didn’t realize what it was until very recently. I didn’t think it was that bad, but I would freak if that happened to my daughter. I guess I minimized it, but like Tom Arnold, I always knew

    I don’t believe the FMS people though. I don’t believe all repressed memories are false or implanted. I had hypnotherapy and all it did was make me relax. I was aware the whole time and nothing was suggested..

  90. David Shurter wrote a book, and in chapter 8 of that book Shurter defends his old friends & convicted child sex abusers Walter Carlson and Mark Andersen. Shurter dismisses the disclosures and testimony of Mark Andersen’s pre-pubescent victims as “ridiculous” and “no real evidence”, and denigrates child sex trafficking victims as “hustlers”. Alethea and Felicity Lee belong to the same SRA victim/DID claimant community that Shurter is involved with. Neither of them have ever denounced David Shurter’s defence of convicted child abusers and denigration of child sex abuse victims, which invalidates every claim they have made here aboout being “on the side” of child sex abuse victims.

    1. Robert Dobson,

      Watch out about assigning things to me that are UNTRUE. You are a hypocrite Mr. Dobson, because you are falsely accusing me of things that have NOTHING to do with me.

      I have NEVER claimed SRA or DID. The only “community” I belong to, is where I live in my hometown.

      I do not know anything about David Shurter. This is the first time I have ever heard of him, and have not spent a lot of time reading his comments here, so there is nothing for me to “denounce.”

      You had better examine your intentions Mr. Dobson, because you are no better than those you accuse and condemn.


  91. Robert Dobson is taking the book out of context. Walt and Mark were fall guys for a group of people wealthy people who were involved in child abductions and human trafficking.

    This little group has been on Amazon attacking Felicity and I for two years now. For those of you who are interested- you can go read Rabbit Hole- A Satanic Ritual Abuse Survivor’s Story to get the whole picture.

    I have been an advocate for survivors for about a decade now- and have been relentlessly attacked by the False Memory group for quite some time now.

  92. Lori B –

    You make a good point. The false memory syndrome ‘believers’ create a fantasy that abuse survivors have some kind of ‘complete amnesia’; that they are like empty shells, void of memories or personality vulnerable to any suggestion or ‘implantation of memories’ – uneducated and mentally ill. None of these fantasies relate to fact. Most child abuse survivors are intelligent, well-educated, and highly successful in life.

    We knew very well what happened during our childhood. After all, we were there and lived it. We have always struggled with the symptoms common to survivors of child abuse. Abusers literally ‘steal’ away the future of their victims – without thought or remorse (though some do try to make amends later in life).

    Survivors of abuse deserve better treatment than their abusers showed them. But, today – we are attacked if we speak, unable to find good mental health treatment for the symptoms we endure, silenced by ruthless trolls on the internet – leaving many survivors feeling helpless, hopeless, and isolated. Many do not understand that there are professional trolls paid to attack anyone who writes truth on the internet.

    As I have mentioned, the false memory ‘believers’ and the FMSF have always relied an being vocal in the media – and silencing anyone who questions their methods and/or theories. But, that is what research is about. We have historically questioned outcomes of studies in order to restudy and find truth. That is the ‘scientific method’. The FMSF folks seem to think that everyone should just accept their studies as valid and accept their theories as truth – despite that commonsense tells us that all of their studies are bogus and invalid.

    However, there are folks who do study trauma and dissociation ethically. Their studies are not found on the internet, but in books and journals. One group is the ISST-D. Because they do not have the resources to flood the internet or utilize the press, the public rarely ‘hears’ the truth, but it is out there. And researchers are working together, as they always have, to study the affects of trauma on children.

    Many survivors of abuse struggle with Dissociative Identity Disorder – directly caused by horrific child abuse –

    Here are some of the symptoms that survivors struggle with because of their past abuse histories: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9URiwU98VPo

  93. ‘… Yes Jorge, criminal (especially criminal) and civil trials need to include substantial circumstantial evidence –as do all criminal cases do. …

    Well, in that case, most of the in-family perpetrators will continue to go unpunished, won’t they? Often, there is no corroborating material evidence — only whatever the victims remember, or say they remember, often, after considerable time has passed. And often there is a strong desire on the part of those in the family and other bystanders to assume or pretend such events didn’t happen. The stringency of the laws seems to be pretty ineffective.

  94. Robert – you say, “Alethea and Felicity Lee belong to the same SRA victim/DID claimant community that Shurter is involved with. Neither of them have ever denounced David Shurter’s defence of convicted child abusers and denigration of child sex abuse victims, which invalidates every claim they have made here aboout being “on the side” of child sex abuse victims.”

    Are you speaking of Ivory Garden DID Support Group, which I own and operate? http://www.igdid.com/ Anyone who takes a look will agree that this is a professional website.

    I am unsure exactly what you mean by the community being an “SRA victim/DID claimant community”. It is a survivor support group which has been active now for about 7 years. It is discussion based and not SRA or DID ‘claimant’ based. The community offers members valid resources and respectful discussion.

    I think that you are grasping at straws since I do not know Alethea – and, I certainly don’t know you.

    If you are attempting to discredit anyone who disagrees with this article or dares to speak truth, your attempts remain futile.

    Again, commonsense….

    I did read David Shurter’s book and wrote an extensive review. I found is book to be informative – with valid evidence included in the book. I find him to be reliable, honest, and a true advocate of child abuse survivors. Anyone who reads the book with an open mind would agree.

    Ivory Garden is admired as a resource for abuse survivors – soon to have a conference in Seattle. Anyone can take a quick look at this website also http://igdid.org/ – another wordpress website – and, find it to be an impressive and professional site.

    Unlike you, I am not afraid to divulge my identity here – giving you the ability to attack me.

    I rest my case. The false memory advocates are unable to carry on any sort of intellectual discussion without attacking survivors of child abuse.

    And, as expected – the conclusion that came from your rant, “invalidates every claim they have made here aboout being “on the side” of child sex abuse victims” makes no sense at all.

    Despite your attacks, my words here and my work within the survivor community is clear evidence that I am clearly an advocate for child abuse survivors and victims of child abuse.

    Anyone can see where you stand –

  95. Felicity Lee-

    “Many do not understand that there are professional trolls paid to attack anyone who writes truth on the internet.”

    I didn’t realize there was such a thing. I have seen trolls, but I didn’t know any are paid.

    If FMS were real why isn’t it in the DSM-5? DID is. Wouldn’t “practitioners” who deal with clients routinely know?

  96. Bridget,

    Your comments are incoherent and totally off-topic. I am offended by your attempt to discredit me with pure gossip, but not surprised. I am hurt that I have to wake in the morning in a good mood only to read your negative untruths about me. It is obviously a personal attack. I don’t know you or understand why you have pried into my personal life. Have a great day.

  97. For people’s information, hypno-analysis is NOT the same as hypnosis. They are two very different methods. Hypno-analysis gets to the root cause and truly heals/liberates a person. Hypnosis only treats symptoms with suggestion. This will never truly heal a person.

  98. Yes, there are many articles that reveal the lengths the FMSF and other groups have gone to – hiring ‘basement trolls’ to roam the internet and silence anyone who disagrees with the ‘false memory syndrome’ theories.

    There is no such ‘syndrome’ as ‘false-memory syndrome – no.

    Ethical practitioners do know and most do practice the standards of care put forth by the ISST-D or other credible sources.

    Our nations history since the late 80’s as pertaining to the FMSF and their activities is interesting to study. Their enterprise is to discredit good therapists, defend child abusers, and silence survivors. And, they have succeeded – as of late suing Castlewood – another interesting case. Recently, their activities have come into question – especially with the bogus claims of Loftus – who is responsible for the study we are discussing.

    I would probably not even be involved with such discussions as this if I had not personally been treated by a ‘DID specialist’ who was actually a well-known member of the FMSF. He did not follow any standard of care. He was openly abusive and threatening. I was obviously not suggestible or vulnerable. I left his care immediately, went home and read his book and began researching the FMSF, and have been doing so for the past 10 years. I also had a short discussion many years ago with Loftus while she was working at the UW – and, was not impressed. She was as abusive to me as the doctor had been. They seem intolerant of anyone with an abuse history. Their attitude seems to be to ‘get over it and stop lying’.

    So, to say not ALL ‘practitioners’ are ethical. Some claim to be experts in the area, belong to the FMSF or are ‘true believers’ in ‘false memory syndrome’ and are treating clients. A truly scary thought, but we must remember that many ‘false memory’ advocates are ‘acclaimed’ doctors.

    I am not the only person who has spent time researching our nation’s history concerning the activities of the FMSF. Those folks will certainly agree that what I write is truth.

  99. Jorge,

    Yes, many many perpetrators will/have gone unpunished criminally or financially. But their soul will always carry the heavy burden of knowing what they did, and it will punish itself (the soul) with self-punishment symptoms and behaviors.

    Many people are too afraid to speak out against an abuser, even if the perpetrator are around other children. This is the worst problem with people not having the strength to speak out.

    But in some cases, it may be best for a person to remain unpunished in regards to criminally/financially….because charges and trials can be horribly taxing on the abuse survivor, and many know they may not win their case.

    There is also the fact that some of the accused are indeed innocent and it is better that ten perpetrators go free than one innocent person be sent to prison (many abuse survivors disagree with me about this).

    Many times, these repressed memory cases are handled privately within the family and no charges are filed because the situation does not warrant it.

    You keep mentioning “corroborating material evidence” but tens of thousands of people are convicted in criminal cases in America, with only circumstantial evidence..

  100. David –

    I am sorry that I did not see your response earlier. Your words of wisdom are appreciated.

  101. Alethea –

    You say, “tens of thousands of people are convicted in criminal cases in America, with only circumstantial evidence.”

    This is a huge distinction – criminal cases as compared to civil cases. I was just thinking about that. The FBI are beginning to become more involved in child abuse, trafficking, etc. These cases are completely different than civil cases. I think that Loftus and the false memory folks’ rely more on and attend to civil cases – without attention to the many criminal cases where perpetrators are ‘found guilty’ and do serve time. Am I correct?

    1. Felicity Lee,

      >>You say, “tens of thousands of people are convicted in criminal cases in America, with only circumstantial evidence.”>>

      Yes, you are correct. Thank you for pointing out the distinction between criminal cases and civil cases. The burden of proof is much higher in criminal cases, so I would tend to believe there are much less innocent people who were convicted of child abuse in criminal repression cases.

      I was thinking about Loftus’s statement (whom I suspect might be “Bridget”) about feeling like Oscar Shindler. It is such a tell-tale comment. It is one that comes straight from the ego-self. The old statement about the road to hell being paved with “good intentions” comes to mind.

      Loftus’s self-aggrandizing comment means she has propelled herself to “defend the innocent” –driven by her own ego –her own drive to be a savior, to be recognized by the world as a do-gooder.

      Yes, I think she might have defended more accused in civil cases, but I am unsure of that, so i cannot say. Maybe “Bridget” can answer that better.

      But either way, if Loftus would humble herself and stop trying to rescue people from an ego-centered intention, then she might very well do more good than harm.

      If she humbled herself, and chose to truly examine the cases of dissociation where there is documented evidence or abuser confessions, or even cases where there is tremendous circumstantial evidence, and if she would bend to the fact that she may have been wrong and would like to help rectify those wrongs, then she could really make great steps in the memory controversy.

      But sadly, one’s wallet usually stops them from wanting to change their lives.


  102. ~Alethea –

    Oh, you are so right. She was quite the pride of the UW, before she kind of slipped off the edge there and decided she didn’t need to ‘play by the rules’ – a wonderful researcher – from what I have heard.

    I cannot even imagine how she thinks she is helping anyone – or for gosh sakes how the FMSF has helped anyone, but the abusers. Humbling one’s self does generally hit the wallet.

    You said something memorable, “Yes, many many perpetrators will/have gone unpunished criminally or financially. But their soul will always carry the heavy burden of knowing what they did, and it will punish itself (the soul) with self-punishment symptoms and behaviors.”

    My grandmother – who was also a survivor – unfortunately believing what the abusers told her until she died at 90 some years old – used to tell me that about my abusers all the time.

    I think this also applies to people like Loftus – who in my book, are simply abusers, dressed in sheep’s clothing.

    But, yes – if she ‘was’ the researcher that some say she was – what a loss – right?

  103. David Bump- I wasn’t ignoring your questions- I just didn’t have time to go through them all. I don’t happen to feel compelled to answer all your questions- but I will respond- since you have questions about our credibility.

    This might help you- I wrote this on my blog DavidShurter.com…

    The Inaccuracy of Childhood Memories

    The survivors of abuse and the False Memory Foundation has been waring for decades now about childhood memories of abuse- and I wanted to throw my two cents in about this controversy. It is well known that I have been an advocate for survivors of extreme abuse, and that ritual abuse- abuse that happens daily and on such a level that it is basically ritualistic, happens to more of us than is admitted- I have to say that neither side is gospel truth. Memories- esp. those of children, are inaccurate- and are subject to the interpretation of the person being abused, and therefore can be inaccurate.

    One example of this is that I always remembered my father as being huge. Being awakened in the middle of the night, my father would beat me until he got himself in such a frenzy that he would rape me- and I spent much of my life seeing a man who was not all that big as something larger than life- and scarier than any boogeyman. When I reached adulthood- esp. after my father became sick- I realized that I was seeing him through the eyes of a child- as I was much larger and much more physically capable than my father. This doesn’t mean that my abuse didn’t happen- but rather that the details I remembered were inaccurate, and it was in the interpretation that I had as a child that skewed my thought processes. That compounded with the trauma that I experienced- made it very difficult to first accept and then remember accurately the specific details of my abuse.

    Milton Erickson- the father of hypnotherapy- spoke about “autohypnotic states of being” which is what I experienced as a child. First being beaten- as a child I would “go someplace else in my mind”- often pretending that the humiliation and trauma that I was experiencing was happening to someone other than myself. Later, as an adult- I often used Socratic questioning to determine what happened to me- as I first had body memories- (memories stored in the body) that lead me to first question my abuse and finally to accept it. Accepting abuse is often the first thing a survivor must go through- as, when I was a child, I spent much of my time denying what was happening to me. Time heals all wounds as they say- but it also makes memories fallible- as we often soothe over and rewrite the abuse that we suffered. This doesn’t mean, again, that the abuse didn’t happen- but rather my memories, in the process of self preservation- rewrote these memories in order to help me deal with them on a day to day basis. And, as I said earlier, abuse memories are subject to interpretation, as are most memories- child and adult.

    What is important to look at is the collateral damage of our lives- and this has NOTHING to do with memories of abuse. Having complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, I have problems with severe anxiety, social awkwardness, and intense sleeping disorders- which dictate something major happened- and is beyond my memories of abuse. Due to the abuse I suffered- I often am a victim of self trauma- in that I have a tendency to re-victimize myself- putting myself in situations where I once again suffer trauma. It is this that assures me that, although I may not specifically remember my childhood traumas in detail- my belief that I went through ritual abuse is nonetheless correct. My life has been a testament to the abuse that I suffered.

    I also had the benefit of having much older siblings than me- who all remembered the same things I did, and sometimes worse. The cult activities that my father and stepmother were involved with were often clarified by my older brother and sisters, and more so- they were presented in such a way that I could have no doubt in my mind that what happened to all of us was factual and real. More so- they remembered the abuse that I suffered in ways that I couldn’t- as they were all well over a decade older than myself- and their memories of my abuse were that of much older participants- and more so, they were not skewed by my personal trauma. No one convinced me that I was abused- nor was I manipulated to believe I went through what I did- but having the assurances that what I remembered was factual was incredibly beneficial to my psychological well being and personal healing as an adult.

    People like Sheri Storm- who spouts convictions that she was manipulated to believe that she ate babies- infuriate me- as it muddies the waters of people who have actually gone through real abuse. In my past- I don’t recall eating any babies- and in fact those who were murdered were generally prepubescent white boys. I have been criticized repeatedly for detailing my memories of killing and cannibalizing the ritualistically murdered children- but these memories are something that I never forgot- although I spent much of my life telling myself that I was crazy for remembering what I did. Abuse survivors often go through this- as it is easier to tell ourselves that we are crazy than admit the horrific realities that we suffered as children. For the record- NONE OF MY MEMORIES ORIGINATED THROUGH MY THERAPY, and to be honest- I almost left my therapist more than once due to the fact that she would not agree nor disagree with what I remembered. Telling me that it was not her job to attest to the validity of my childhood experiences- she simply stated that it was her responsibility to help me deal with what I believed in hopes that I could achieve a better life and a more consistent day to day experience without constantly being daunted or controlled by my memories of trauma. People such as Sheri Storm will negate her responsibility she has to her own therapeutic process and blame others for her misconceived notions of her past- whereas I contend that much of the responsibility lies with her and her lack of discernment to determine the events of her life. Of course the False Memory people will jump on this and claim that she was just a victim- but who is the victim? Her- or the lives of the people she is claiming owe her a million dollar payout for her lying to herself? I think that the blame is two fold- and that the women who claim that their lives have been ruined by rogue therapists have to look in the mirror if they are to determine who convinced them of such balderdash.

    Memories are fallible- esp. considering that in the cult- children were often manipulated to believe things that were not factual in order to hide the REAL events that were occurring. Predators often skew the truth with their victims so that they are not easily discovered- and children are the easiest to manipulate. Are all of my memories spot on? No, I don’t believe so- but I also contend that due to my history- and my life experiences- that there is more evidence that I went through what I remember than not. Despite what the False Memory Foundation will attest to. They weren’t in my life as a child- and they certainly are not in my life as an adult- and so their contention that I am mistaken- or worse, lying- is nothing more than an opinion- and uneducated at that.

    To any survivor out there who has gone through intense abuse- don’t allow ANYONE to detail to you your experiences, and although I suggest you question your memories, I certainly would not deny them. For those of us who have gone through extreme ritual abuse- and, in my case, cult abuse- we have spent far too much time denying to ourselves what we experienced- and it is time that we allow ourselves to not only remember- but speak about the things that we suffered in order to prevent such atrocities from happening to other children in the future.

    As far as all the missing children being runaways- I wonder how many fit into the category of Johnny Gosch- who STILL is classified as a runaway although his mother claims that his father sold him into this mess. My parents sold us- and many who are involved with the SRA stuff DID get sold by their parents.

    You also have the case of McMartain- these kids didn’t get abducted but rather were trafficked- used- and returned afterwards. Along with this case- there were 7 other daycares in the area who claimed the same thing was happening. After the McMartain case- a dig was performed and the tunnels were discovered that the children spoke about- along with satanic relics in the places- showing that officials flat out choose not to investigate thoroughly and suggests that the children were telling the truth. These kids, to my knowledge- were not abducted- and yet STILL found themselves involved with SRA.

    I recieved my statistics from the Center for Missing and Exploited Children- and they claim that number is kids. One of their past officials went on Oprah and claimed the same thing. Saying that only 50,000 are juveniles doesn’t make a lot of sense- regardless where you got your statistics from. However- people who sell their kids- and my parents were an example of that- don’t report their children missing.

    1. Well, thanks for at least replying, although it’s more of the same material that isn’t directly related to the topic of this article and doesn’t answer my questions, which I didn’t think would be such a burden for anybody to answer as they appear to be.
      And wasn’t it that only 50,000 were adults, and 800,000 were juveniles? At any rate, I was only pointing out that you should be careful about using large numbers in which possibly only a small number are related to SRA. I’m not one to say that it is entirely “a myth,” but I do know that there was a time when Satanic rituals and worship were thought to be a lot more common than they were (especially if you don’t count teens dabbling in it for thrills), and they are probably less common now. Satan is probably plenty happy with the work he is doing through “Christian” churches now, in various ways.

  104. David Bump,

    I apologize that I did not see your post that began: “Felicity Lee, David Shurter — By ignoring my questions and simply using them as a springboard for continuing your crusade against the FMS’ers, however noble a cause it happens to be, you have not helped your case in my eyes.”

    First, you have assumed that David Shurter and I are on some kind of crusade against FMS’ers (I like that term. Had not heard it before – think I will adopt it.) But, you are incorrect. ‘In your eyes’, you seem to believe that there is a ’cause’ and I/we are presenting a ‘case’. Incorrect again. You say that I/we have ignored your questions. Incorrect yet again.

    1) David Shurter seems to have his own point of view based on his experience. I have a different point of view based on my own – as does every individual.

    2) I did not ignore your questions, but chose not to answer them – as is my right.

    3) I am not on a crusade against anyone. I look at ‘evidence’ in full, analyze it, and reflect on its validity based on the method and outcome. If the study is invalid and/or unethical, I ask myself why is it being presented – there is always an agenda. The FMS’ers tend to present bogus studies as ‘scientific truth’. That is a disgrace to them and the scientific community.

    4) I am wondering what ‘case’ we are presenting. In your eyes, you seem to ‘believe’ that there exists some kind of ‘debate’ here. There is no debate, except in your eyes. DID is a valid diagnosis – in the DSMV. Child abuse is ‘real’ – though while trying to present ‘your cause’, you attempted to minimize the extent of child abuse, which did not help your case. I am unsure what is your agenda or who you are protecting.

    The rest of you comment dealt primary with your ‘argument’ concerning SRA. That rant was off-topic. I see nowhere in this article anything about ritual abuse.

    I am not a skeptic – forgive me – I am not willing to play the ‘skeptic game’ with you.

    If your or anyone elses experience relates to ritual abuse or mind control, I validate that completely. But, to just suddenly go off on a tangent invalidating others’ experiences is not, in my eyes, cool.

    You state: ” Sadly a lot of the runaways end up in the sex traffic, but not from SRA, just regular drug pushers/pimps. I have heard of a place in New York where you can see many people dying from the drugs they have been given to keep them in the sex trade, trying to pay for the drugs and get more. Often the drugs were used on them first so they wouldn’t know or wouldn’t resist their being used for sex, and afterwards they are hooked and see no other options. Eventually they are physically ruined and no longer wanted by their masters, and by that time they are too far gone to restore to health. But as to the number that might have been victims of SRA at home or through abduction as children? Must be much smaller….”

    That is you point of view? What in the world does SRA have to do with this.

    The children who run away from home do so for a good reason. “Between 1.6 and 2.8 million youth run away in a year.” “80% of runaway and homeless girls reported having ever been sexually or physically abused. 34% of runaway youth (girls and boys) reported sexual abuse before leaving home and forty-three percent of runaway youth (girls and boys) reported physical abuse before leaving home.” (national run-away safeline).

    It is a sad state of affairs when a child is so afraid to tell that they run away, living on the street – vulnerable and yes, to those who will further abuse them. This is a new topic, but you have understated another horror of child abuse. Your tone sounds as if you ‘blame’ the child who has no other option but to turn to drugs – because he/she is either not believed but afraid to tell.

    This topic, I can talk about from experience. I was on the street for 3 years as a child – to get away from the horrible abuse at home only to walk right into worse abuse on the street – in order to stay alive.

    You are not qualified to talk about this topic. If you want to state your ‘case’ do so with empathy for the children/survivors who have ‘lived’ the terror of child abuse.

    This is not a debate. There is truth – and – then there is agenda based opinion. It is obvious that the FMS’ers hale from different backgrounds – using bogus studies and agenda driven rhetoric to create the illusion for the public that child abuse is overrated and survivors are liars, chuck full of false memories implanted by a therapist, etc. etc. As was mentioned, these silly theories are smoke screens that cloak the millions of abused children and damaged child abuse survivors, whether living on the street or at home, or struggling to find good mental health care – from the public eye – and – the FMS’ers know it. That is the truly sad part of it all.

    I write this with due respect for you and your FMS’er friends.

    1. Felicity, I don’t even know any FMSers, nor have I endorsed their position. My sympathies are with the abused children, my comment about certain ones having “no choice” was meant to emphasize the extremity of their plight.

      “First, you have assumed that David Shurter and I are on some kind of crusade against FMS’ers (I like that term. Had not heard it before – think I will adopt it.) But, you are incorrect. ”
      I’m confused — if you are not on a crusade, why do you like the term and plan to adopt it? I’m glad you like it, I thought it was appropriate, but are you saying it isn’t or it is? All you guys seem to be talking about here is how bad the FMSF is.

      It’s true that everyone has their own point of view, but you and David Shurter seem to agree that it is not uncommon for people to entirely block out memory of abuse and then have it revived again under hypnosis, and that this process is trustworthy. Is this correct? You keep talking about staying on topic, but you write as if the topic of the article is whether or not child abuse is frequent, but that is not what the article is about, it is about the changing attitudes toward belief in what I just described, shifting to the belief that (all? some? most?) memories recovered by hypnosis are (partly? largely? entirely?) erroneous. I’m trying to learn more about this. That there is a group of people bent on making the case for FMS is very important, but it does not answer all of my questions about the case of memories retrieved by hypnosis.

      “2) I did not ignore your questions, but chose not to answer them – as is my right.”
      You certainly have a right not to respond, however, it has the same effect as ignoring. Now that you have explained you took notice of them, but chose not to respond, I suppose a better term would be snub, slight, spurn, shun, or disdain — although for your sake I’ll take your word that it was a platonic, neutral choice,

      ” There is no debate, except in your eyes. DID is a valid diagnosis –”
      That’s not what the article is about, and what my eyes see is a difference of opinion regarding what it is about, and that makes for a debate. Apparently the majority of professional opinion has swung against the idea of recovering memories via hypnosis in any manner, so if (IF) you believe it is a valid technique then you’d better hope there is a debate and it swings back in your favor.

      “…concerning SRA. That rant was off-topic. I see nowhere in this article anything about ritual abuse.”
      You may have a point about that, but when the ritual abuse is reported by people who had no memory of it until after treatment with hypnosis, then it relates to the topic. And I hope that “rant” didn’t refer to what I wrote, for I don’t think an objective judge would find it was fulminating, pontificating, emotional and/or overextended.

      “If your or anyone elses experience relates to ritual abuse or mind control, I validate that completely. But, to just suddenly go off on a tangent invalidating others’ experiences is not, in my eyes, cool.”
      I think we all have to “play the skeptic game” to some extent, for there are lots of scam artists out there. You are certainly far more than skeptical about some people and their statements. I agree it would be uncool to suddenly go off on a tangent to “invalidate others’ experiences,” but I was merely investigating the claims that someone else had already made.

      “That is you point of view? What in the world does SRA have to do with this.”
      Exactly — my point of view is that there is a lot of horrible abuse going on right now, and it has little if anything to do with SRA, and it is this abuse that should take priority. It wouldn’t be on-topic, as you say, unless (one of the things I’m still trying to determine) some people are advocating that people should be punished for abuse (including SRA) that is known only from post-hypnotic memories.

      The rest of your post was about ongoing abuse, which I’ve already stated I’m most concerned about, but also that it is not the topic of this article.

  105. David Shurter,

    I do not know why you feel the need to justify yourself to David Bump. You say you have responded because he has questioned your credibility.

    Ask him what his credibility is, and will you expect an honest answer on a relatively anonymous commenting forum?

    I would not put so much concern or time into what David Bump thinks of you.


    1. Credibility is an issue relevant to people making claims of authority, eye witness reports, etc. I have made no such claims, I have only asked questions I truly wondered about and, when denied information by those with the most interest in educating others, sought it from websites which did claim some authority, and pointed out inconsistencies between their statements and some that have been made here. If there’s any beef about credibility, it should be directed at the sources of my information.

  106. David Shurter, although Milton Erickson has done some wonderful work, I do not think he is “the father of hypnotherapy.” Roberto Assagioli, Pierre Janet, and Jean-Martin Charcot were more influential and pre-dated Erikson.


  107. Umm. Melody (Bridget) you may want to log out of Psychiatric Times?

    A prominent historian of religion has argued that “the emergence of SRA motifs” served as “a kind of feminist and evangelical Christian pornography.

    huh? I don’t get that

    I can follow David Spiegel’s comments

    “It is very clear that dissociative disorders are associated with traumatic experience, and child abuse is, sadly, common, not rare.1 Who would have thought twenty-five years ago that we would learn of widespread abuse of children by clergy, along with institutional cover-ups and failures to report criminal activity to the police and social welfare agencies? There is now a Dissociative Subtype of PTSD in the DSM-5, involving depersonalization/derealization in addition to the other PTSD symptoms.2-4 So it is clear that trauma and dissociation are linked. The False Memory Syndrome Foundation, presented in Noll’s article as the ‘answer,’ was highly critical of the diagnosis of DID, those who treated people with the disorder, and vigorously cast doubt upon reports of childhood sexual abuse (not just Satanic Ritual Abuse). Indeed, the FMSF started over credible abuse allegations by the daughter of its founder, well-known psychologist Jennifer Freyd, of abuse by her father. If one can have a false memory that childhood abuse occurred when it did not, one can also have a false memory that abuse did not occur when it did.5 In addition, one who has been physically, sexually, or emotionally traumatized may provide both true as well as exaggerated reports.6 Those who have been abused are terribly damaged, as are those who are falsely accused. Systematic denial of abuse is every bit as wrong as exaggeration of it. “

    1. So now I am Melody? Oh, how you conspiracy minded folk love to throw stuff against a wall . I’m supposed to be Loftus, remember? Please consult with A’s projections before launching into one of your own.

      Did you read all the comments? Speigel has very little support in the psychiatric community. This crap has more in common with exorcism than it does science. There is nothing supporting it but myth. It’s ruined lives and left women in limbo defining themselves in terms of their DSM diagnosis. Sad.

      I particularly like this comment:

      Psychiatry contributes through its fundamentally faulty approach to diagnosis. It still maintains belief in dissociation more than a century after Pierre Janet abandoned his creation (see “Other Disguises” in Chap.8) and all research proves his final opinion correct. Psychiatrists do not deserve any excuse.

      David @ Wed, 2014-03-26 08:31

      These comments are by mental health professionals!

      By the way the DSM has been panned by the NIMH so I wouldn’t worry about any diagnosis Spiegel is trying to push here. http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/side-effects/201305/the-nimh-withdraws-support-dsm-5

  108. I didn’t know about the dissociative subtype of PTSD. I have ptsd symptoms and depersonalization/derealization, but I didn’t know that was called anything.

  109. I am not conspiracy minded. I just followed the link you provided and Melody H was logged in. I am sorry if I was mistaken that it was you. I just thought Melody would want to log out is all.

    I did read the comments and there is still disagreement.

    What the NIMH is offering may not be any better just different.- from your link

    “Nevertheless, the alternatives, at least those that the NIMH is presenting, may turn out to be equally problematic and unworkable”

    I think it is sad if anyone with any illness feels it defines who they are. I don’t think that is specific to trauma based illnesses.

  110. The question is if the DSM actually has anything behind its diagnoses or in many cases is just a bunch of folks like the ones in the article waxing philosophical over culturally driven BS on differences or downright ordinary conditions like grieving.

    If you were gay or lesbian in 1970, you were pathological according to the DSM. Sybil’s psychiatrist, friend with Braun in the article, actually treated the gay actor Rodney MacDowall like he had a disease. She did studies supporting this BS. Like the satanic panic and the Sybil meme it had nothing to back it up but someone said “these people are ill.”

    What the NIMH wants to do is get away from quackery like the Satanic Panic that led to the explosion in dissociative disorder diagnosis (much of it done by social workers who have NO training in medicine) and recovering memories in therapy and toward things that are shown to actually help people.

    I am glad you don’t believe people should define themselves by an illness. I find it very sad to see women getting on these chat forums and throwing around their DSM diagnoses like they are badges of honor. The one that really amazes me is DDNOS. Dissociative Disorders Not Otherwise Specified…in other words, a lack of a definition becomes the definition!!! Nuts!

    What’s even worse is the charlatans who make money off of this. The gnostic numbers ladies, the folks who ask for credit cards when you join their forums to chat about your dissociation or the people who try to sell you outlandish books on the subject complete with human sacrifices and other conspiracy theories. It’s very, very sad to see what passes for mental health in this country and I am glad to see so many professionals taking a stand against this quackery.

  111. There are a lot of nos dx in the dsm. Psychosis nos, bipolar nos . Often it is more for billing when they don’t want to rush to a diagnosis. I agree there are problems with the dsm5, but it is not all bad.

  112. it is interesting that the current regeime of satanists just got done having a ritual to make a dead member of the late Westboro minister family gay by performing a gay ritual.

    Franklin Credit- and the stuff that happened in Omaha was all satanic based. “the people who try to sell you outlandish books on the subject complete with human sacrifices and other conspiracy theories.” was aimed at me while “the people who try to sell you outlandish books on the subject complete with human sacrifices and other conspiracy theories.” is aimed at Felicity. These are the types of attacks that one comes to expect from people like Briget and her FMSF group. Talking about things they have no clue about- it is interesting that so many professionals came forward to speak at the conference that Felicity is putting together.

    1. Probably true David, as you have been doing her bidding. According to you, you were given a phone number of a mentally troubled woman and asked to travel hundreds of miles visit her face-to-face (would you like to tell us about your history with a restraining order?)…so much for privacy and safety concerns for the people who join igdid and share information…pay pal is linked to credit card and bank account info is it not how the site is funded? Now why was this David? Why were you given the woman’s phone number by Felicity Lee? The woman’s (whose number you were given by Felicity Lee) son recently made this post…another potential restraining order was involved.

      “But the only one who has been “accessed” is my mom, harassed at her home over the phone by people with documented histories of harassing behavior. This only after Judy was warned to discontinue her own harassing contact. ”


      Here’s the background on the other restraining order:

      Anyway, main point of interest – Judy has been informed by the authorities that any further harassing contact between her and my mom will be grounds for Criminal Harassment charges, and a restraining order.


      Oh, and anyone looking for some background on you might want to look at your chat with your sister.


      I don’t have to speculate about anything about Felicity Lee or you, David, all I have to do cut and paste your words. How’s that theory working that Warren Buffet is a human trafficker?

  113. “the folks who ask for credit cards when you join their forums was aimed at Felicity rather. Which is a lie in and of itself. I joined igdid.com and wasn’t asked for a penny.

  114. “I am glad you don’t believe people should define themselves by an illness. I find it very sad to see women getting on these chat forums and throwing around their DSM diagnoses like they are badges of honor.”

    I was thinking more like saying I have diabetes vs I am a diabetic where you think of the dx as identifying you. That is just my belief though, other people feel differently.

    People act differently on-line. I have only met one person irl that has told me she has DID and she only mentioned it because it was part of a group therapy and diagnoses were part of the discussion. She definitely wasn’t flaunting her diagnosis.

    On-line it can be short-hand because everyone is there because of a similar issue. I have a diagnosis and i have it in my signature on a mental health board just to make it easier for people to respond. I don’t think of it as any kind of honor though, I would gladly trade it for a more “normal” life.

    1. I am sorry about your diabetes. I have a niece who has had it since she was a baby. I witnessed one of her seizures. Very scary. She is fine now but she has to cope with it daily, although being a kid she’s much more concerned about other things. I hope you are managing your condition with minimal side effects.

      D.I.D. was/is largely promoted by the Braun’s, Klufts and Spiegel’s of the world and the people who train them. It was on the verge of being pulled from the DSM before Spiegel waged a war – he’s not very respected for it nor is the APA. Google “Dissociative Identity Disorder should never have been included in the DSM” Janet came up with the concept over 100 years
      ago! It’s largely thought to be caused by the therapist/client relationship…most of the symptoms are brought about thorough therapy. Unlike diabetes there is little evidence it is a true condition. Like speaking in tongues, it’s a learned thing believed by those who participate in it. You need a believing therapist and a believing patient to have the condition…not so with diabetes. My niece’s pancreas gave out before she could talk.

      Women who learn to question their D.I.D. diagnosis and leave their therapists have lost their symptoms as well, what does that tell you?
      Unfortunately the most horrific of these cases were women who were encouraged that they were in cults and participated in horrible things, those have left some real psychological damage.

      If you spend years being urged to recall and reenact a rape (read imagine) that could not have happened given that it was committed by Satanists who do not exist it is nearly impossible to erase overnight.

      The trauma comes not from what allegedly happened by from the therapy that caused you to imagine it, over and over for years. Women have had their lives ruined by this. You can meet them in these forums. They are absolutely convinced their parents were high priests in covens and that they were a part of rituals. The interesting thing is…the ages of these women correspond with the time it was popular to uncover such memories in therapy. In other words you have a lot of middle-aged Satanical Abused women floating around in these forums after decades of therapy…not many in their 30s when the therapy was not as popular. The therapy created a lot of ghosts. It’s quite tragic.

  115. First, I would like to comment to Lori B and others concerning who ‘Bridget’ really is. No one really knows. He/she goes by other names such as ‘Alto’ on Randi.org (founded by Randi – once on the board of the FMSF) and CritThink on Amazon.com. Her main objective is to literally beat up survivors, spin any bit of information she can find, gossip – spreading slander about anyone who either supports survivors or speaks up as survivors, dig into her ‘enemies’ private lives and post personal information on the internet, attempting to gain private information in order to access either family members of her enemies in order to turn them against survivors or befriend them. She loves to befriend survivors and influence them to turn against their therapists. She hangs out on another blog run by one Janette Bartha – her blog once taken down for breaking wordpress tos. This little group follow one Doug Mesner – or may be Bridget is Doug Mesner – no one is sure. Doug Mesner is an FMS’er, wannabe journalist who prides himself on being the founder and leader of the Satanic Temple going by the name Lucien Greaves. http://www.vice.com/read/unmasking-lucien-greaves-aka-doug-mesner-leader-of-the-satanic-temple https://ritualabuse.us/ritualabuse/douglas-mesner-and-the-lucien-greaves-satanic-temple-connection/

    She/he prides himself on being a ‘skeptic’ using certain carefully studied tactics, including ‘woo-woo’. http://orphia-nay.blogspot.com/2007/01/911-truther-credo.html such as: “Call the “official story” (the scientific, evidence-based, professional investigation and conclusion) the “official conspiracy theory” so that easily swayed people will, in one fell swoop, stop using logic, science and evidence to analyse the material.”

    If you have not dealt with these people before, realize that it is a game for them. They look for articles like this to ‘debunk’ (their term) anyone. There is no truth in what they write. They are simply reacting to what you write, in order to practice their ‘woo-woo’ skills to prove their ability as a ‘skeptic’.

    You no longer have to play the ‘guess-who-I-am’ game with Bridget any longer.

    Another woo-woo tactic – “Accuse your opponent of being a liar, or try some other tactic that will (hopefully) make him angry. If he responds in kind to your endless taunts, change the subject to his anger, and accuse him of name calling. If he accuses you of provoking him, then you have changed the subject of the debate. If he stays on topic, keep the heat up. The Believers in the audience will forgive the worst verbal attacks you use, but they will think even the mildest replies he makes to you are personal attacks that undermine his argument.” http://orphia-nay.blogspot.com/2007/01/911-truther-credo.html

    At any rate, I have made it clear that there is no debate here, and I am not playing the ‘skeptic’ game today.

    Thought that might help – she is not Loftus at all. She does not have education, qualification, or experience within this topic, but she will argue and slander 24/7 if she gets a chance.

  116. I would like to comment on the article which Bridget brought up by Richard Noll. I was not aware that it was now actually published. Last I read it was here, http://historypsychiatry.com/2013/12/10/noll-on-the-satanic-ritual-abuse-panic-of-the-1980s/#comments and had been taken down and only available on pdf. That was certainly a slap in his face.

    Noll, however, is not an expert within the area he wrote – “Richard Noll, a clinical psychologist, is Associate Professor of psychology at DeSales University. He is best known for his research and scholarship in anthropology and the history of medicine and psychiatry on topics such as shamanism, spirit possession, mental imagery and visions, vampirism, Carl Gustav Jung, and dementia praecox/schizophrenia.” http://desales.edu/home/about/people/faculty-staff-directory/meet-the-faculty/lists/meet-the-faculty/noll-richard-ph-d- That may be part of the reason that it was removed. I don’t know.

    I think that the best study every done on the history of the FMSF and the ‘backlash’ was done by Katherine Hine, “Retaliation Against Professionals Who Report Child Abuse”. (There are many excellent scholars who have written similar articles and books. Just google ‘backlash’ and FMSF.) The story is interesting and enlightening as to why child abuse statistics have skyrocketed since then – and who is profiting financially.

  117. i, like many others, went into therapy BECAUSE of what i remembered and did not have memories through abuse.

  118. Bridget

    You do know that cults and satanism exist, right? and that child abuse is real and not uncommon?

    1. Satanic Cults are largely fear fed projections. People who claim they are part of satanic cults have been shown time after time to be mental unstable people and isolated incidents of people blaming the devil for something they did.

      There is NO Satanic Cult activity in the US. You believe it because you’ve heard it. It’s a cultural myth. Show me a single credible article…there are none. The La Vey church is not a cult just a bunch of goth folk who like to be different. Jim Jones, Scientology, those are Christian not Satanic.

      Anybody can claim anything, like Gypsies kidnap babies…but facts don’t come from claims they come from proof. Google 1992 FBI Report – Satanic Ritual Abuse.

      Yes, people call themselves satanists and yes cults such as Jim Jones exist but NO there is no widespread or even limited satanic cult activity in the US or has there EVER been.

      Of course child abuse is real and not uncommon, what I detest is the attention and resources that got taken away from the pursuit of real child abuse cases to pursue hooded men in the woods that have NEVER existed and what absolutely appalling is that innocent people went to jail for this made up BS. Google Fran and Dan Keller…they just got out. Heartbreaking.

  119. I would like to comment to the assertions made about the NIMH – brought up by Bridget. article – http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/side-effects/201305/the-nimh-withdraws-support-dsm-5

    Here is an example of throwing out articles with no understanding – spinning the information – as she has done here – to bash the DSMV – which previous to its publication, the ‘backlash’ were fighting tooth and nail to keep DID out.

    First this article has nothing to do with DID and/or memories (remember that the ‘false memory syndrome’ is not a ‘real’ dx).

    Second, the NIMH and the APA work well together and always have to improve the quality of mental health care. Bridget would not be aware of this since she is not directly involved. Insel writes, “to transform diagnosis by incorporating genetics, imaging, cognitive science, and other levels of information to lay the foundation for a new classification system. Through a series of workshops over the past 18 months,” he continues, “we have tried to define several major categories for a new nosology. This approach began with several assumptions:

    A diagnostic approach based on the biology as well as the symptoms must not be constrained by the current DSM categories;
    Mental disorders are biological disorders involving brain circuits that implicate specific domains of cognition, emotion, or behavior;
    Each level of analysis needs to be understood across a dimension of function;
    Mapping the cognitive, circuit, and genetic aspects of mental disorders will yield new and better targets for treatment.”

    This has been where diagnosis has been going since the 70’s or earlier. We will someday have the equipment to be able to fulfill this goal. And, DID will be the first to be totally proven through different assessments.

    This is not a ‘bad’ thing for anyone concerned.

    Bridget – it helps to read the article closely and do background research before jumping to conclusions.

  120. Felicity Lee why did you give someone a phone number of survivor and encourage him to travel hundreds of miles to meet with that person? Why when I Google your name Kevin Annett do I find out press releases with you and David Shurter forming a coalition with this man? Why when I Google Kevin Annett do I find site after site with statements like this? “Kevin Annett is a defrocked priest who had taken-up a second career as a con-artist/grifter.”

  121. Jenny asked to me me Brigit (aka critthink) when she discovered I was going to be at Sundance with my sister. This is nothing more than gossip- and a spin of events from someone who was in no way involved.

  122. and yes- my half sister- who has, by her own admission- stalked me and been abused by our parents as well- don’t feel love for each other.

    I put much of that conversation on my website DavidShurter.com so I am certainly not shying away from our argument.

  123. David, you seem to have memory problems. Let me refresh it. You wrote this the minute you got back from your visit on Sept 30th saying you wanted to get it down before you slept. (Now correct me if I am wrong, you previously had an order issued against you for harassing someone, correct? This was detailed by you as well in your own words.)

    “Felicity- a dear friend of mine and fellow supporter of Byington, mentioned that I should try to contact Jenny Hill and she if she would like to meet, and so she gave me her number and I decided to reach out as a fellow survivor and see if Jenny was interested in meeting for coffee. The first conversation with Jenny Hill, she told me that she was definitely interested in getting together for lunch the next day. The next call she told me that she wanted to get together but she wanted to bring her son Robert, and that perhaps we wanted to tape the conversation. I called Felicity and told her of the conversation and her advice was HELL NO!”

    1. if I remember correctly critthink I was completely on the defensive with that conversation because I was being attacked by your group on Amazon.

      That has a lot to do with what I said.

      Did it ever occur to you that Felicity called and asked first?

  124. Bridget writes, “The trauma comes not from what allegedly happened by from the therapy that caused you to imagine it, over and over for years. Women have had their lives ruined by this. You can meet them in these forums. They are absolutely convinced their parents were high priests in covens and that they were a part of rituals. The interesting thing is…the ages of these women correspond with the time it was popular to uncover such memories in therapy. In other words you have a lot of middle-aged Satanical Abused women floating around in these forums after decades of therapy…not many in their 30s when the therapy was not as popular. The therapy created a lot of ghosts. It’s quite tragic.”

    What I am reading here and elsewhere from Bridget IS what is tragic.

    First, Bridget, you just wrote that whole comment as fact – not opinion. May I ask your qualifications to make such assertions with no evidence or citations?

    I am however qualified to respond. I am not only well-educated in the area of psychology, but also have owned and operated an active online support group for many years – IGDID.com. (btw – we have never charged anyone to join).

    Let’s just look at a few of your assertion which I contend are ‘agenda-based.

    1) “The trauma comes not from what allegedly happened by from the therapy that caused you to imagine it.”

    I am not even sure how you could believe this yourself. The comment makes no sense. What trauma? How was it alleged? And, how would the therapist know to ’cause’ anyone to imagine if it never happened?

    2) “Women have had their lives ruined by this. You can meet them in these forums. They are absolutely convinced their parents were high priests in covens and that they were a part of rituals.”

    This statement has absolutely NO basis in truth. I do tend towards you being male. We can all hear the sexist tone. Reality – many of the members of our support group are actually male. I have NEVER, in the many years that I have been involved with support groups EVER heard anyone state that they were “convinced their parents were high priests in covens and that they were a part of rituals.”

    3) “The interesting thing is…the ages of these women correspond with the time it was popular to uncover such memories in therapy. In other words you have a lot of middle-aged Satanical Abused women floating around in these forums after decades of therapy…not many in their 30s when the therapy was not as popular.”

    Where is your source for this information? It would be a great hypothesis, if it had any basis in truth. In fact, most survivors who have participated on our support group are young. You are right, however, that therapist do use the standards of care put forth by the ISST-D or other ethical standards of care.

    4) “The therapy created a lot of ghosts. It’s quite tragic.”

    What therapy? What ghosts?

    You speak about others’ bs many times in your comments. I call what you are writing bs. I am sorry, but I, for one, am offended.

    I have been in therapy for 10 years. My memories are all intact – dissociated, traumatic memories. DID is one way that the brain develops when adapting to horrific child abuse. People with DID are not ‘different’ or ‘mysterious’. Approximately 10% of the population have some sort of dissociative disorder. They are doctors, attorneys, psychiatrists, male, female, young, old – universal. You are again demonstrating your ignorance in this area by writing such comments as you have here without a shred of evidence.

    You could at least add that these are your opinions based on your beliefs and not based on any evidence. Thank you – have a great day.

  125. Bridget-

    Your attempts to discredit me will never influence anyone.

    People know who I am. In fact, I am well-known not only in my community, but online –

    You are and always will be anonymous – you have no credibility. I don’t think that your woo-woo tactics will help you here anymore than they have anywhere else.

    I don’t know you and ask that you stop harassing me. If you have something to say, please stay on-topic.

  126. David Shurter –

    Bridget/CritThink is baiting you – prying into your (and my) personal life. It is none of her business who we call – now is it?

  127. David writes Did it ever occur to you that Felicity called and asked first?

    That’s not what her son posted. And the fact remains you had a court order for harassing, what is the head of a support group for survivors doing facilitating such a meeting???????????

    This is even more bizarre when it was documented by the woman’s son that when your coalition buddy Judy was warned by Utah athorities to STAY AWAY or risk a restraining order.

    So let’s get this straight, Judy your fellow survivor coalition buddy is under threat by UT authorities of a restraining order if she goes anywhere near the woman in question and Felicity Lee calls you up when you had a court order against you and says you should visit the woman?!?!?!

    Does that make any sense for a person who runs a support group for survivors who professes to be concerned about safety!?!?!

    1. And I do apologize Lori. You were posting some good stuff but Felicity and David see fit to come in and promote their businesses every opportunity they get. I just thought it important for people to evaluate their statements in light of their histories. I’m glad the moderator found their backgrounds on other forums of value….perhaps can be stopped from hopping forum to forum promoting their outlandish ideas and trying to troll for survivors with pay pal accounts and credit cards. You see how David swooped in on A. offering his email?

      Anyway, Satanic Ritual Abuse is a myth.

  128. Bridget – there is no need for you to continue. You have made a complete fool of yourself. Are you trying to access the folks who come here to write now?

    My personal life is none of your business. I have no ‘business relationship’ with Jenny. She is not a part of our support group. Again, our relationship is NOT your business. I don’t care what gossip you here on what private blogs or open chat rooms you sit on.

    Since you know nothing about IGDID, we can all feel safe that you haven’t been trolling there – it remains safe from people like you who attack survivors in one breath – then, attempt to access them in the next.

    You have threatened me elsewhere – and have been reported.

    You will not silence me, like you have others. I am here, there will be a conference. If you show up, you will be arrested.

    Again, I ask that you get on topic please. I was actually enjoying having a discussion. If you disagree, do it with dignity – can you please?

  129. So you are threatening someone on the internet with arrest because you don’t like that I post facts on you which are largely press releases, comments links and posts from you and/or David. That makes sense.

  130. Bridget – *heavy sigh*

    Can we get back on topic? You haven’t posted a single ‘fact’.

    Back on topic now. Very similarly, the study that is part of this article does not represent ‘fact’ either for the reasons that have been discussed. But, at least, Loftus is a professional, able to carry on an intelligent discussion.

    Do all FMS’ers rely on opinion and bogus studies to publicize their ‘beliefs’.

    Fact – therapists are not magicians. They cannot implant false memories in their clients’ minds.

    Fact – Of course, there are satanic cults, and there is abuse of children there.

    Fact – There is no such thing as ‘false memory syndrome’ – never been proved.

    Fact – Dissociative Identity Disorder is a valid and real diagnosis.

    Fact – there are paid trolls who do try to silence survivors on the internet.

    Fact – There are people who financially benefit from child abuse- and, it is not survivor groups or therapists.

  131. I haven’t figured out how to respond to individual posts.

    Jorge I have enjoyed your posts.

    So is the point of the article that increasing numbers of scientists, therapists, psychiatrists etc are believing that memories can be manufactured (why?). And can’t be trusted. Even though FMS has never been proven and there is such a thing as repressed memories. But not enough for the author to be pleased?

    I know they do have some professionals but fmsf is founded by people accused of csa. They do have a vested interest in discrediting victims. How does dealing with past abuses have to do with taking away services from present child abuse? Can’t both be served?

  132. Lori..you write there is no proof of repressed memories. Well, that is the whole point. Beliving there is is what causes harm.

    By the way, science proves that memory is faulty, not some group you seem to take issue with. It’s not just one researcher or one experiment either.

  133. I didn’t intend for it to read that way. Repressed memories are real. False memory syndrome has never been proven. And, this is not real science. A poll showing a growing number of people agree with you but that you think more should still, is science? It is following a trend.

    Reminds me of a science joke with the punch line (Frog with no legs goes deaf) . You have to leave out your expectations to clearly view the data.

  134. well critthink- since you brought it up- let people read the order for themselves…


    It is obvious that i didn’t have a lawyer- and what I said during the hearing is pretty important. I got the order against me for sending a card six years before talking about a man they forced me to light on fire.

  135. oh and I never spoke to Robert-who has joined with your group and been accessed by them in order to try and get yet another lawsuit going to silence survivors. And if i remember correctly- he is the one who invited himself along with coffee with my sister and I so he could record our conversation. My phone will show that Jenny called me NUMEROUS times in order to try and facilitate a meeting- which I ended up declining- so you are spinning the conversation without presenting the facts- of which you are ignorant of.

    I am hardly the only person who has spoken about events in Omaha- and most of my book has NOTHING to do with satanic ritual abuse- nor do my videos on my website showing Omaha.


  136. I have never spoken with nor dealt with Kevin Arnett. Again- another spin in order to silence survivors.

  137. I would like to see this research suggested by the APA. I do understand the importance of bridging the gap between practitioners/researchers so they can work together

    The controversy over the validity of memories of childhood abuse has raised many critical issues for the psychological community. Many questions are at this point unanswered. This controversy has demonstrated that there are areas of research which should be pursued; among them are the following:

    Research to provide a better understanding of the mechanism by which accurate or inaccurate recollections of events may be created;
    Research to ascertain which clinical techniques are most likely to lead to the creation of pseudomemories and which techniques are most effective in creating the conditions under which actual events of childhood abuse can be remembered with accuracy;
    Research to ascertain how trauma and traumatic response impact the memory process;
    Research to ascertain if some people are more susceptible than others to memory suggestion and alteration and if so, why.
    Much of this research will profit from collaborative efforts among psychologists who specialize in memory research and those clinicians who specialize in working with trauma and abuse victims.


  138. This may be helpful


    November 27, 2010 — shadowlight and co

    “Professor Alan Schefflin, Santa Clara University Law School and Dr. Daniel Brown reviewed 25 recent studies (spring 1996) on Amnesia for childhood sexual abuse. They state:

    “No study failed to find it….Amnesia for childhood sexual abuse is a robust finding across studies using very different samples and methods of assessment. Studies addressing the accuracy of recovered memories show that recovered memories are no more or no less accurate than continuous memories for abuse”.

    Herman & Schatzow (1987): 53 women – 36% always remembered, 64% some amnesia; 36% mild to moderate amnesia; 28% “severe memory deficits”. 74% found corroboration, with 40% getting confirmation for perpetrators, other family members, physical evidence and 34% from siblings or other victims.

    Albach (in press): 97 women with a history of CSA and a matched control of 65 non-abused women. 35% in the sexually abused group reported amnesia at some time, compared to 1% in the control group who reported amnesia for nontraumatic unpleasant childhood experiences. Psychotherapy was not typically reported to be the cause of recovering the abuse memory.

    Roe & Schwartz (1996): 52 women, hospitalized for sexual trauma. 88% reported history of csa. 77% not remembered for significant time (3 to 45 years)

    Bernet et al (1993): 624 undergraduates reported at least one experience of sexual abuse prior to age 15. 36% reported no memory for a time. Only 30% had been in therapy so “unlikely that they remembered their abuse as a consequence of psychotherapy”

    Belicki et al (1994): 55.4% of abused students in study reported disrupted memory. “Subjects reporting no abuse responded significantly differently than the other three groups with respect to definitons of sexual abuse, psychiatric symptoms and sleep and dream behaviour. There were no significant differences in response the the questions between those who reported and those who did not report corroboration of abuse. There were also no significant differences in response to the questions bewteen those who had disrupted memory and those who had continuous memory for childhood sexual abuse. Those who had recovered memories were just as likely as those who had a continuous memory to have corroborative evidence for the abuse.

    Van Der Kolk & Fisler (1995): 46 adults in in depth interview. Of the 36 subjects with childhood trauma 42% had suffered significant or total amnesia at some time. Corroborative evidence available for 75%. Williams (1994) : 129 women who had been sexually abused as children. 38 % failed to report or were amnestic for childhood sexual abuse though it was clearly documented in medical records 17 years earlier. 32% said they were never abused. “Amnesia for sexual abuse in a community sample is not an uncommon event. There was a tendency for women with the clearest evidence of abuse to be more amnestic”

    Widom & Morris (in press): Court substantiated abuse and child-neglect cases. 39% of the sexually abused failed to report the documented child abuse. “We have also found substantial under-reporting of sexual abuse among known victims of sexual abuse. This is particularly impressive since these are court substantiated cases of childhood sexual abuse”

    Spiegel: “Memories in dissociate amnesia are not so much distorted as they are segregated from one another.”

    Williams: In general, women with recovered memories had no more inconsistencies in their reports than women who had always remembered….their retrospective reports were remarkably consistent with what had been reported in the 1970′s….the stories were in large part true to the basic elements”.

    Dalenberg (1996): “Memories of abuse recovered in psychotherapy were no more or no less accurate than memories of abuse that had always beem remembered. The overall accuracy rate of both continued and recovered memories of abuse was quite high (70%) Just over half the patient sample significantly improved their accuracy for their abuse memories in the course of psychotherapy”.

    About those who coined False Memory Syndrome

    Ralph Underwager, one of the founders of the False Memory Syndrome Foundation, is credited with having coined the term. In 1993, he gave an interview with the Dutch paedophile magazine, Paedika, in which he was reported as saying that paedophilia could be a responsible choice and that having sex with children could be seen as ‘part of g*d’s will’. The other co-founders of the FMSF were Pamela and Peter Freyd, whose adult daughter made accusations of childhood sexual abuse. The American media gave them almost unquestioning support until their daughter, psychology Professor Jennifer Freyd, felt obliged to speak out publicly, to stop the damage that she felt her parents and their organisation were doing to abuse survivors.

    Other early promoters of false memory syndrome in the US were Paul and Shirley Erberle. In the 1970s, when child pornography laws were less rigid, they edited a magazine called Finger in which there were explicit illustrations of children involved in sexual acts with adults, with features entitled ‘Sexpot at Five’, ‘My First r*pe, She Was Only Thirteen’ and ‘Toilet Training’. Another key figure is Felicity Goodyear-Smith, author of First Do No Harm (1993). Felicity Goodyear-Smith admits to a personal as well as professional involvement in the issue. Her husband and parents-in-law were imprisoned for sexual abuse offences, having been members of the New Zealand community, CentrePoint, that encouraged sexual intimacy amongst its members, including the children. Although the adults involved were prosecuted for these acts, including public sex with children, Goodyear-Smith claims that this was simply ‘childhood sexual experimentation’ and quotes studies that claim to show that adult-child sex can be harmless. The false memory syndrome foundation was formed by Pamela and Peter Freyd, who were theirselves accused of abuse by their daughter (insidently their daughter – Jennifer Freyd – wrote an amzing bok called “Betrayal Trauma: The Logic of Forgetting Childhood Abuse“).

    Repressed memories in none sexual abuse cases

    Repressed memory in war vets or holocaust survivors has been a long acknowledged phenomena. It was only when it began to be about sexual abuse that people start yelling about FMS.”

    Also see, ISST-D for other studies – as well as “The Standard of Care for Adults and Children”

  139. It has been my experience that therapy is not ‘about’ digging around for traumatic memories, especially in cases where there is amnesia – as in dissociated traumatic memories. These memories are ‘held’ by different ‘states of mind’ for good reason…unless the client reports current abuse situations that need to be reported or the client is a child being abused.

    Otherwise, therapy is about stabilization and coping with everyday life. I have never seen a therapist or been trained to purposefully push clients to ‘remember’ anything or to ‘implant memories’. Possibly, there are some out there, but it would be the ‘clients’ responsibility to find another therapist. Abuse survivors are certainly not as vulnerable as FMS’ers claim.

    It does happen that a client may wonder if this or that happened, and the therapist cannot invalidate, but ethically must talk through anything that comes up. That is part of the process. To talk through memories is NOT the same as influencing the client.

    Obviously, the goal of therapy is NOT to invalidate the clients – call them liars or talk to them as Bridget talks to us. That is to purposefully re-traumatizing the client by treating them as their abusers did, and I have never heard of a therapist doing such a thing.

    Recovering memories is not the ‘main’ goal of therapy. This notion has been promoted by the FMS’ers for the sake of winning court cases or suing therapists. A memory is a memory. Memories are not ‘true’ or ‘false’. That is like saying you had a ‘false’ or ‘true’ hunger pang.

    The problem with the brain is that it is NOT a computer. Scientists have run into this problem again and again. And, abusers are aware of this. Many children experience memories that never happened, but were staged by the abuser, told to the child by the abuser, etc. These are still memories. The child’s brain reacts exactly as if it ‘really’ happened.

    There will never be a ‘false memory syndrome’. The very term is an oxymoron.

    We would all love to have a simple answer to memory – what ‘really’ happened, but we are an intelligent species who have the ability to protect the brain in order to live and function daily. People adapt to their environment in whatever way they must to keep themselves safe.

    The only research that can be done is statistical. Memory is an individual experience. Every person has completely different experiences, and memory is the product of personal experience.

    It comes down to belief – do we actually ‘believe’ that therapists can implant false memories?

    Of course, vulnerable people can be convinced that something happened to them that didn’t – if there is a benefit to them – money, denial, etc. But, that is obviously NOT the product of memory – but of anther person coercing someone to believe something that simply isn’t true – a lie. To confuse these is a mistake.

    Collaborating evidence is the ONLY way to ‘know’ for sure what happened. Many survivors don’t have access to this, but it is still not ethical to call them liars or invalidate them. That causes more instability – and people like Bridget know that all too well – and, use it against them.

  140. Thanks Felicity Lee

    I have no problem with stats and graphs. I just don’t know the point of this particular study except that clinicians in different areas of the field have varying beliefs on memory. But it doesn’t shed any new light on the topic of memory.

    1. Nope – lots of theories out there. No one ‘knows’ how the brain works. It is a mystery.

      But, we do know well how abusers work, and the effects that trauma has on children and adult survivors.

      I try to use common sense. If the study is bogus – like this one is – then, I go to the source and ask why are they publishing a bogus study. If it about ‘false repressed memories’, I just put the ‘researcher’s’ name in google and up pops FMSF – every time. Imagine that.

      Btw, there are hundreds of cases where the memories were collaborated and the abuser was convicted.

  141. Lori B writes: “I just don’t know the point of this particular study except that clinicians in different areas of the field have varying beliefs on memory.”

    And that IS the problem. Science is not belief…it’s defined by evidence that can be replicated. Loftus’ experiments are not some of some belief system; they have been replicated and expanded upon by researchers who have no links to therapy.



    This FM whatever org conspiracy is growing a bit tired. Citing poor case studies “research” from the 90s only underscores how poor the justification is for repressed memories. Crap like would never get published in science journals. To refer to the DSM categories is a joke.

    Gravity is not a belief…it’s a fact. Experiment after experiment will produce the same result. Your belief is irrelevant when it comes to fact.

  142. David Bump,

    You need to take personal responsibility for my “haughtiness” as you label it.

    You wrote to me, “Are you afraid if people did know exactly what went on, they would find things you don’t want them to know? “

    That’s just pure assumption, and you expect me to tell you my history and details after that comment?

    Then you said, “Are you sure your therapist isn’t in danger of a major medical malpractice suit?

    That’s just obnoxious on your part, simply ugly assumptions once again. She has forty years experience. She was taught by a highly respected surgeon, who turned to studies of the mind when he saw that drugs and surgery were not helping his patients because they kept returning to him with another problem in another part of their body.

    You mentioned people with physical problems like mine, and that they recovered from them by other means. You still don’t understand that first off, drugs and surgery don’t heal anyone. They are dangerous and can kill a person. They only “treat” the symptom, and never get to the root cause. Other people use herbs, acupuncture, and chiropractic care, or eating differently etc. they also are only treating their symptoms and will develop other problems later in life, in other areas of their mind or body.

    Why on earth would I “share a bit more” of how it worked in my case, when your last comment to me is riddled with skepticism? and because of your comment about my therapist, I would not share anything personal with you.
    Mr. Bump, I never mentioned “evil” in regards to my opposition. That’s your interpretation and idea of things.

    My book is not geared for the “average Joe” as you call yourself. It is geared for those who are truly suffering with physical, psychological and emotional pain from child sexual abuse and incest.

    It is not going to sell or be of much interest to people like you, who scoff and demean on a dime.

    My book is not to make money or to convince others of anything. You seem to want to be convinced. I have no need for that kind of person in my book audience, or in my life.


  143. “To recap: In the 1990s, a lot of psychologists believed in repressed memories of abuse, and a lot of people claimed to recover such memories. Many of these were probably cases in which the abuse was suggested in therapy, but didn’t actually happen in real life. And some of these, some unknown but small number, were probably real cases of abuse.

    Clearly Tom Arnold believes his case was real, and now many of Marc Maron’s millions of podcast listeners may also believe in the power of repressed memories.”

    The actual study questions are so extreme (remembering memories till birth and that they must have happened) that most people in the field don’t believe them. (about 90%). I have more trouble with the interpretation in this article. Tom Arnold didn’t even have repressed memories. I do know the importance that memories can be implanted, I don’;t know why anyone would, but that doesn’t mean that it happened in most cases or at all. Why does it have to be a small number? I don’t see the correlation..

  144. If memories can be- why can’t GOOD memories be implanted? Doesn’t it make sense that therapists would implant good memories when something bad happens or is the contention that all therapists are evil and looking to put bad memories in the heads of people.

    Esp. with PTSD and war survivors, why are there no examples why therapists and those in therapy who have been trained to forget their traumatic memories by having special life pleasing memories magically implanted. Why just dismiss and deny the abuse like that makes it better?

    The False Memory foundation goes on and on about bad memories being implanted- but not one example is given to those who have had good memories implanted. No research concerning balloons or mice and laser beams has proved that good memories can be implanted and over ride the bad ones- they just claim that those concerning abuse are false. This is a huge problem in my opinion.

  145. We all know the definition of ‘implant’ – I hope, because the FMS’ers use it all the time in their studies.

    “Implant” – insert or fix (tissue or an artificial object) in a person’s body, esp. by surgery.
    “electrodes had been implanted in his brain”.

    So, what does the therapist do, stick her hand through the mouth up into the brain and implant some horrible memory of eating babies? Or, does he/she stick those memories on the end of those electrodes and stick them in the brain?

    Would you consider ‘implanting memories’ an inpatient or outpatient operation?

    The very fact that people aren’t falling on their face laughing at this ridiculous notion demonstrates just how much the scientific community puts up with – presumably a show of respect – for this idiocy. It is not even a theory – a theory needs to have some valid study to back it. It is a ‘belief’ that FMS’er throw around hoping that everyone is just plain ignorant enough to know the definition of the term – please?

    Next time I go to therapy, I am going to ask my therapist to implant a memory that I went to Hawaii last weekend and had a wonderful time. Anyone want to go with me – I can add you to the ‘implanted’ memory. Gosh, I just hope that it doesn’t hurt too much. yikes.

  146. Bridget – you didn’t put up the mousy study? Oh my gosh, you did – you all have to read this study. They put this laser beam in mousy’s brain and implanted a false memory – stop – bridget – I am falling out my chair laughing. Did mousy tell you all about it?

    Then, you gave the same study you did before with the what was it? “17 men and women studied 168 object locations on a computer screen -‘ See more at: http://www.northwestern.edu/newscenter/stories/2014/02/how-your-memory-rewrites-the-past.html#sthash.Fehyh8sS.dpuf

    How many times do we have to tell you that is not a random sample representing any population? Middle school kids need at least 30 subjects to do their studies.

    And, this is the same study you shared before – that’s all you have?

    My dear, I can present another page full – if you like.

    You were getting further trying to discredit us with lies.

    Work on your skeptic-skills –

  147. Let me say up front that I have no qualifications WHATSOEVER to debate this topic. I am, however, quite well versed in the various techniques used by the intellectually dishonest (or merely outclassed and unwilling to lose face) to divert and dumb down public discourse, especially when a particularly “controversial” topic is being discussed for such a distressingly long time not only in (horrors!) complete sentences but in COMPLETE PARAGRAPHS as well. Keep it up please, as the cumulative effect of reading such (mostly) passionate and articulate arguments is both interesting and informative. Less interesting are the histrionic attempts at demonizing one another, but overall the fact that this whole thing hasn’t degenerated into Jerry Springer-land is something you should all be commended for….

  148. payson,

    This is not a ‘controversial topic’ except to the ‘skeptics’ who pride themselves on ‘being’ skeptics.

    This is about an article where the public is asked to conclude that this study ‘proves’ anything at all.

    The study itself and the conclusion assumes that folks know nothing about how to conduct research. And, based on this conclusion, the public walks into courtrooms as jurors thinking that 96.2% of the medical and mental health professionals ‘believe’ that it is possible for anyone to ‘implant false memories.’ The study is bogus, and the conclusion ridiculous. The defense may even ‘use’ (very likely) this study as evidence in a trial – and, some child abuser may go free to further abuse.

    I am not an expert on Jerry Springer, but thus far, I do not know of a show where child sexual abuse or perpetrators have come to discuss this topic. What would it be called? “Which guest raped and abused my child?”

    Do you know that the FMS’ers actually promote that people support convicted child abusers? They ask that you send money and if not, visit them or send them cards in prison. Their wealth has come from defending child abusers and asking for donations to defend them.

    And, they are not ‘nice people’. Survivors who stand for themselves and against their perpetrators ‘are’ attacked. But, if someone doesn’t stand for the survivors and children, public opinion is that survivors should go on Jerry Springer and fight it out? Really? Because perpetrators don’t really exist? And, they don’t really sit on the internet waiting to bring down survivors. parents of abused children, and supporters of abused children and survivors (mainly mental health professionals)? Because all survivors of child abuse have false memories that were implanted or have been influenced to ‘believe’ false experience of abuse? Those possibilities are ridiculous – I don’t think Jerry Springer would touch this one – but, I could be wrong.

    What is happening here is that over 1 million survivors of child abuse are silenced, knowing that they will be attacked and humiliated by a very few vocal FMS’ers. This keeps their assailants free to further offend. The FMS’ers MUST rely on lies to try to discredit anyone who speaks – exactly as the abusers treated them in the first place. Many mental health professionals do not speak up, because they fear also being attacked with lies, putting their practice in jeopardy – which was all the rage in the 90’s and still happening with the recent Castlwood case.

    I have no agenda. My name can be googled and it can be seen who I am. The FMS’ers do not use real names, but sockpuppets and anonymous names to protect their identity and agendas. No one knows who they are except that they protect Loftus and the FMSF. They fight dirty and have been know to hurt – physically, emotionally, and financially, anyone who speaks for the children or survivors of severe sexual abuse.

    I am sorry if you can’t find the irony and the sick nature of this whole campaign that promotes and financially benefits from child abuse, but am glad that interests you. I wish more people would take an interest and speak up.

  149. Nobody is silencing anyone by conducting real studies in neuroscience that are published in real science journals which clearly some people lack the capacity to understand when they counter with “case studies” from the 1990s – storytelling from patients that will never ever get published in any credible medical or scientific publication.

  150. Do you have anymore example of these ‘real’ neuroscience studies published in ‘real’ science journals? Bring them forward, because I am ready to give some information on ‘how’ to go to the ‘real’ study and identify whether it is ‘valid’, ‘ethical’, and/or reliable. Just because a ‘real’ professional wrote or conducted them and ‘finally’ got them accepted to a journal does not make them ‘scientific’ or their conclusions valid. And, even more so – the conclusion written in articles like this are often agenda based or just plain incorrect.

    I want to read where a ‘real’ surgeon ‘implanted’ memories into a ‘real’ person’s brain – not some mousy – okay? Is that ‘really’ too much to ask? Or a study that is not a ‘survey’ of some ‘hundreds’ (not a random sample or large enough to represent the targeted population) of people.

    I hope that you are just ‘pretending’ to not understand that ’empirical’ studies do have certain criteria. Because, if not, you are ignorant of this topic and should not be wasting time trying to prove the point that mere rhetoric and invalid studies are evidence of anything.

    Okay, I actually have my degree in research, not clinical psychology. And, I am more than happy to share how research ‘should’ be done. The APA does have certain criteria which I can easily quote – since I have their book right here. And, I can show you where and how this study does not meet that criteria. I think the public needs to be aware how these studies are ‘fudged’. Even the mousy study was met with real scientists’ questioning the ‘suggested’ outcome.

  151. When your remarks show you understand science I can post more studies. Laughing (perhaps because you lack the capacity to discuss?) at current research conducted by neuroscientists in laboratories and countering it with surveys and case studies from the the 1980s and 90s entirely undercuts your claims of any credible degree in research.

  152. Woo-woo tactics will not work here CritThink/Altos/Bridget – whatever name(s) you are using. I am asking for something specific, and you are not understanding – obviously – good day.

  153. Stepping back from this thread has enabled me to observe the human ego, hard at work, in nearly everyone who has commented; including myself.

    The ego is a funny thing, it tricks us all the time –tricks us into thinking it is NOT the ego at work in us. But I think most often, the ego is shielded by anger and will NOT step back from its own anger to see that it is the ego doing the talking, and not a true desire to help or educate others.

  154. It’s nothing personal. It’s just an observation I made. Discovering the human ego, in depth, is pretty fascinating.

    I have recently (even in the last few days) been able to become more and more aware of it since doing some heavy work on myself with my psychoanalyst. People think the word “ego” refers only to “arrogance.” It does not.

    Ego is anger, fear, the need to be heard, the need to be right, the need to defend itself, the need to make others wrong, impatience, belittling others etc. and then the ego defends all those things by trying to explain them away –to argue them intellectually, or by trying to reason why they do it.

    It’s just interesting. not personal. I am guilty of ego-defense mechanism, right along with everyone else in the world. Every human has an ego…it’s our self-survival mechanism.


  155. Those who argue that there is “no scientific proof” of repression/dissociation might want to humble themselves long enough to read some quotes from one of the greatest scientists who ever lived:

    “One thing I have learned in a long life, that all our science,
    measured against reality, is primitive and childlike.”

    “Whoever undertakes to set himself up as judge in the field of truth and knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the Gods.”

    “People like us, who believe in physics, know that the distinction between past, present, and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.”

    “The only reason for time is so that everything doesn’t happen at once.”

    “The only source of knowledge is experience.”

    ~~Albert Einstein

  156. To each their own. I think that better than studying the ‘ego’ – which is interesting, might be more interesting to study statistics and research.

    Right now, my ego doesn’t have much time to be ‘out’ – with planning a conference, running an active support group, working, going to therapy 4 times a week, etc. etc.

    I totally agree, ““The only source of knowledge is experience.” – In fact, haven’t I written that more than a few times here?

    I hope that I will have the time for self-exploration soon.

    Thank you for the insight. I just don’t appreciate your pushing your thoughts off onto me. It is a form of invalidation and lack of respect – which I think all people deserve.

  157. Felicity Lee,

    Your ego was wounded by my comment, even though I said it isn’t personal, and that i too am guilty of asserting my ego-self in arguments in this thread. It is your ego that feels invalidated. That is part of the ego, it feels shot down by words of another person. The ego also wants respect.

    Human rights are given to all, out of respect…but in dialogue, with varying opinions and belief systems, etc. respect is relative. You *feel* disrespected, but I feel it is respectful to speak the truth to others –because it speaks to their soul, not their personality. Essentially, it helps them to speak the truth to them.

    Telling us about your conference, running an active support group, working, and going to therapy 4 times a week is ego-defense.

    I hope you find time for self-exploration soon because we are here on earth for a blink of an eye, and then we are gone. Self-awareness, self-enlightenment, finding our higher-self…should never be put on hold to when we have “more time” as time is an illusion, and running out.


  158. I am not defining anyone’s personal ego, but pointing out the ego itself. Lori B. is correct. My ego-related issue was to point out the ego in others. One of my issues is the need to speak my mind, be free to express myself etc. This is because of the death threats and being silenced as a child. That’s one of my ego-related issues –to just freely express myself, which is my right to do. As it is the right of every other human being.

    It is the *reaction* to what I say which harms others, not what I say. We suffer from our own reactions, not from the words of others. It is the ego doing the suffering…”I am hurt by you.” “You offended me” etc. that’s just more ego.

  159. Well, as they say – you can’t control how others act, but you can control how you ‘react’. Sorry, don’t know who originally said that –

  160. I don’t think ego has anything to do with this argument. there are just people who are fighting to keep this quiet.

    I just had death threats last week on my phone. Trying to get the info out there on the validity of Omaha and SRA and there are those who would like to keep this quiet. Esp. since there is a new book on McMartain out on the stands now.

    Omaha is a perfect example of SRA. Aquino is a perfect example of a Satanist being involved.

  161. Felicity Lee,

    I owe you an apology. It was my ego pointing out your ego about the mention of what you have going in your life. I commend you for doing conferences, running an active support group, working, and being brave enough to face your past in therapy.

    I think the original quote you were trying to convey is an actually very acient. Buddha, and then Jesus, both taught the same thing.

    Have a beautiful day.

  162. David, what I meant by ego, was all the nitpicking, snide remarks, personal insults, and attempts to make others wrong, and the arguing to make ourselves “right.”

  163. Alethea –

    I think possibly you are not aware of what some of us survivors have been through on other sites by this same person. If I told you, you would be shocked.

    We may be a bit protective of ourself as the same lies written here have been repeated elsewhere literally hundreds of times. It is their effort to discredit us. No one knows who these trolls are, but they go to any lengths, including publishing personal information – financial, business, family information, phone numbers, address – etc, etc. It is scary and intrusive. We have reported them again and again, but they cannot be identified – because of their anonymous status and use of proxies. The slander has come to the point of financially burdening us and attorneys have been brought in.

    These tactics are/and have been used for the past two and 1/2 years since I posted on a book at Amazon and was brutally attacked by them.

    People who read do not seem to understand how much we give up of our privacy and well-being to just post the truth here. We know they will attack – and, they are good at what they do. It is amazing how much one anonymous poster can influence people by just putting a bit of doubt in our creditability – generally, they like to say that I personally ‘steal’ from survivors – you get the idea. Lies.

    I don’t think that your ‘ego’ scenario really fits in this case. Possibly so, but I don’t come here with ego, but scared to death what they will do next to hurt me or any survivors who speak up.

    They have stated that we ‘will’ be ‘punished’ if we speak out. This is not a conspiracy, but truth. Amazon, for example, is a place where the types of comments that would astound some – are allowed – and this commented has been our warning there.

    I am not picking a bone with you – it just should be known that survivors are not safe posting places like here – but, that is our decision, and we do so to show truth – not to build our egos.

    1. Felicity Lee,

      I have experienced these pro-FMS people throughout the years, and one thing I know, is that they do not have any power over you personally that you don’t give them.

      Your own efforts and your own truth/story cannot be discredited by anyone. Who are “they” to discredit or credit you? No one.

      As far as phone numbers and addresses go, all of that info. is already available online about nearly every person.

      I think anyone with a clean heart and intelligence will not pay one bit of attention to them about “stealing” from survivors. I know I did not.
      Now, getting into family business and getting into someone’s personal family is another story.

      Have you tried to turn their garbage into your own strength? Have you tried to symbolically look them in the face and use their outing/exposing of you to your advantage?

      I have been threatened and intimidated over the years by these kinds of people (who knows, maybe the same people), and I used their threats to strengthen myself in healing my fear of death.

      No one can harm you unless it is the will of your soul, the will of God’s timing. Without that, NO ONE has that power to harm you.

      Fear is EGO, it is the grand master of Ego.

      Take the action you need to with the proper authorities, but after that, if nothing changes, then surrender your fear to a Higher Power and keep speaking your truth, keep speaking out. Keep helping others, and mentally brush them off like you are swatting a fly.

  164. Thankfully, there are people willing to admit when they make mistakes and retract wrongful accusations of sexual abuse. That’s true integrity.

    1. Jeanette: “Thankfully, there are people willing to admit when they make mistakes and retract wrongful accusations of sexual abuse. That’s true integrity.”

      What’s your point? That people who made accusations without being certain, and who made a huge error, have more integrity than people who were sexually abused and dare to openly speak about a crime committed against them?

  165. David Shurter you are looking for “good” memories to be implanted? I don’t know your definition of “good” but you might keep with Loftus’ work. She & her colleagues are working on using memory manipulation/implantation in an effort to help alcoholics. Memory researchers are expanding experimentation to help people make positive changes in their lives.

  166. according to my sis who graduated magnum cum laude with her masters in social work- loftus is presented as what NOT to do with research techniques. She is not well respected in the graduate studies programs- and I wouldn’t bother to follow her at all.

  167. Personally I don’t believe that true memories can be manipulated either way. A change of mind- a change of heart- yes. But memories are just that- memories.

  168. Jeanette, if you mean that Loftus is involved with those who are trying to change the memories, minds, history of a person by manipulation/implantation “to help people make positive changes in their lives,” then she is walking down the path of darkness.

    That kind of mind manipulation is dangerous to the soul –dangerous the soul of the person having it done to them, and the soul of the person doing it.

    Treating the symptoms of disease and illness, and altering the mind of other humans, instead of getting to the root cause of disease illness, and alcoholism will never cure anyone.

    On the contrary, it will create a race of robotic, soulless people who have lost their free will and it is altering their soul’s destiny, and thus, their chance to transform their lives from free will and purging of the soul.

  169. Felicity Lee, since you can’t stick to research, are you referring to this? Comments #2034 and #2035


    Again, why would you give a person who had a court put a restraining order on him the phone number of mentally fragile woman who he had never met and encourage him to visit her when an acquaintance of yours had also been warned in no uncertain terms that she would have a restraining order imposed on her if she continued to harass that woman?

    Why did people continue to harass this women after that incident via the phone (it appears the face-to-face meeting you were organizing with this woman got thwarted) to the point where her son made a public statement to stop the harassment? This woman has been under mental health care for decades. I thought you said you advocated for survivors or at least your press release about working with Kevin Annett said so.”Kevin Annett, fraud” brings quite the Google results.

    Your behavior is trademark, Felicity Lee. If you come here to support survivors as you put it…the facts don’t quite support that nor do they support your claim you ever were any sort of a researcher. Funny how facts have a way of catching up with folk.

  170. Thank you, everyone, for these comments. I think the discussion is becoming less and less interesting as time goes on. I’d ask that you please wrap up the bickering, otherwise I will close the thread.

  171. Thank you – Virginia Hughes –

    Now that I am in tears having to see my name on some troll going by Bridget this week – more lies about me – I would hope that you would please wrap it up, because the only way I have to answer lies is to defend myself –

    I don’t know why I should have to do that here. thank you

    I think we are through discussing the article – since, suddenly I am no longer a researcher either – based on Bridget’s vast knowledge of me.

  172. “Your behavior is trademark, Felicity Lee. If you come here to support survivors as you put it…the facts don’t quite support that nor do they support your claim you ever were any sort of a researcher. Funny how facts have a way of catching up with folk.”

    Funny, Bridget, how trolls like you have a habit of trying to discredit people with their lies.

    I am the president of a company hosting a conference in Seattle – and also approved by the NASW to be provider of CEU’s. I also graduated Cum Laude with degrees in Psychology, English with Writing Emphasis and hold a Masters Degree. What else – I don’t have time to list here.

    What about your lies about me? I don’t have a clue.

    Stop harassing and following me around. Stop slandering me. Can you understand that?

    My personal life is ‘personal’. If I have friends you don’t think I should have, go to some blog where I am NOT and gossip there. Is that understood Bridget/Jeanette?

    The proof that I support survivors is all over the internet –

    *rolls eyes* Why do trolls ‘have’ to cause so much trouble on the ‘net’? You have been booted off of nearly all the other sites that have stopped allowing trolling. Jeanette had her own wordpress account taken down for failure to follow TOS. Come on – let people discuss and remain on topic. You don’t need all of the attention all of the time – do you?

  173. I refuse to defend myself to the group of trolls that are attacking me.

    Jenny and I didn’t meet because I CHOSE not to meet with her. Basically because Richard wanted to meet and record my sister and I having coffee.

    I am not going to defend myself. I have nothing to defend. Bridget wants to say that I reached out to Jenny for nefarious reasons- which isn’t true.

    As far as the protection order I am not going to discuss it further. Anyone who wants to check it out can do so on my blog DavidShurter.com . Everyone who has read it has commented that it was bogus- and these people are just trying to make mountains out of molehills. I again refuse to defend myself to the likes of them.

  174. Thanks for the article and allowing us to discuss Virginia. I think the dialog has deteriorated at this point.

  175. Althea, my point is: “people willing to admit when they make mistakes and retract wrongful accusations of sexual abuse. That’s true integrity.” That’s what I said. Why are you reading into a simple statement?

    1. Jeanette, the way your comment reads is in comparison to something: “That’s true integrity” implies something has no integrity, or less integrity. I was wondering what it is that you feel is less than this kind of “integrity?”

      If you don’t have an answer, no problem. I just wanted you to know how it reads to me.

  176. David, your sister seems to have missed a good education.

    Hate Loftus, pick another memory researcher conducting similar experiments. Simple as that.

  177. Gee Althea, you are jumping to fatalistic conclusions. If you don’t want to implant anything in the minds of people, then we’d better stop the Santa Claus, Easter Bunny, Tooth Fairy scenerios as well.

    We can alter people’s thinking about drinking alcohol by using false memories and continue researching the cause, can’t we? Do people suffering from alcoholism need to wait for research and the US government to fund it before they have a good technique to stop drinking?

  178. Jeanette she graduated suma cum laude. She could run circles around you and your pathetic blog.

    You insults fall on deaf ears. You call survivors liars NOT being a survivor yourself. But that is why you are here- cause no one bothers to come to or read your blog.

  179. Virginia, I encourage you to allow this thread to continue so you and the public can witness how the survivor camp behaves. There is no better way to understand it than to witness threads like these.

    When, for example, simple questions cannot be answered, people are called stalkers and trolls. You see this behavior from the survivor camp but you will not find it from people like me who are interested in getting research and facts to the public.

    You are welcome to my blog to witness more of the same behaviors. I’ve had such violent & vile posts that I have an open file at the FBI & my local police department listing Pat Goodwin aka Felicity Lee & David Shurter as instigators.

    The public has a right to know the behavior of these individuals. They are offering continuing education credits, are you kidding me? This is how we educate our mental health practitioners? No wonder we have serious problems with people believing they have multiple personalities & other nonsensical illnesses.

    Leave the comment section alone. You are doing a public service.

    Thank you kindly. Jeanette Bartha

  180. David Shurter, I am insulting no one. I offered you information.

    There is no room for personal attacks in a discussion. If that’s all you got, please leave.

  181. David Shurter, I am insulting no one. I offered you information.

    There is no room for personal attacks in a discussion. If that’s all you got, please leave me alone and disregard my educational offerings to you.

  182. you are just mad cause you Felicity took your blog down.

    I have never had nor plan to have anything to do with you Jeanette. Don’t flatter yourself.

    You are a troll who attacks survivors because you are involved in the False Memory group attacking survivors.

  183. Jeanette

    The article is about memories, especially repressed memories. Making light of illnesses because you don’t believe in them is trollish behavior.

  184. So, JB – you are saying that because your blog doesn’t get enough views, Virginia should change her topic, as well as the flavor of her blog to meet your needs?

    This is ‘her’ blog, and I respect that. You are a troll and always have been. Sorry – just saying. You have threatened to sue me, changed your name numerous time to hide who you really are all over the net. You can’t comply with wordpress terms of service on your own blog – and, you should be trusted on other people’s. Whatever. Keep talking.

    I think that I have made my point here with this article. The study was not valid, because of the the sample (not random of representing the targeted population). The conclusion is incorrect, because it has nothing to do with the study, which in itself is ‘fudged’.

    “Elizabeth Loftus is an expert on nothing. Specifically, she studies events that never happened and evidence that never existed, yet somehow has etched a vivid memory.” (univ of irvine)

    Nothing could be more true than that statement.

    I think that giving our own assessment of this experiment and the conclusion is all that is necessary here.

    I, for one, am sick of the trolls harassing and flaming me. If there is some real good reason why this should continue from them, I would sure love to here it.

  185. Felicity, Ms. Hughes has respectfully requested you not engage in the type of post you just made.

    Elizabeth Loftus is a fine researcher. I suggest you go elsewhere if you want to engage in such unbecoming behavior. Here are a few of Ms. Loftus’ credentials.

    Year Award
    1991 Honorary Fellow (and lifetime member) of the British Psychological Society
    1994 “In Praise of Reason” Award from the Committee for Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal
    1995 Distinguished Contribution to Forensic Psychology Award from the American Academy of Forensic Sciences
    1996 Distinguished Contribution to Basic and Applied Scientific Psychology Award from the American Association of Applied and Preventative Psychology
    1997 James McKeen Cattell Fellow Award from the Association for Psychological Science
    2001 William James Fellow Award from the Association for Psychological Science[22][31]
    2002 Contributions to Sexual Science Award from the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality
    2002 Quad-L Award from the University of New Mexico
    2003 Distinguished Scientific Applications of Psychology Award from the American Psychological Association; delivered award address at 2003 APA’s convention.[28]
    2003 Elected Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences[2]
    2003 Elected Thorsten Sellin Fellow of the American Academy of Political and Social Sciences
    2004 Elected to National Academy of Sciences
    2005 Distinguished Member of Psi Chi
    2005 Elected Corresponding Fellow to the Royal Society of Edinburgh
    2005 Grawemeyer Award in Psychology from the University of Louisville[32]
    2005 Lauds & Laurels Faculty Achievement Award from University of California, Irvine
    2006 Elected to the American Philosophical Society.
    2007 Elected Humanist Laureate by the International Academy of Humanism
    2009 Distinguished Contributions to Psychology and Law Award from the American Psychology-Law Society
    2010 Howard Crosby Warren Medal from the Society of Experimental Psychologists
    2010 Scientific Freedom and Responsibility Award from the American Association for the Advancement of Science[33]
    2012 William T. Rossiter Award from the Forensic Mental Health Association of California

  186. Bridget

    No, I don’t know the history of anyone here.

    I was specifically responding to this one statement:

    “No wonder we have serious problems with people believing they have multiple personalities & other nonsensical illnesses.”

    I don’t even know what a repressed memory doctor is.

    I just think there is a better way to state that you personally don’t believe in a dx than that. I would find that statement- inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic with the deliberate intent of provoking an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion

  187. Bridgit/Altos/CritThink – did you not just threaten me on another forum – not just 2 minutes ago? Hmmm – troll.

    Anyhow – you think Loftus is great – wonderful.

    I don’t threaten you and I validate your beliefs totally. Don’t want to take away your hero.

    Just thought you could explain ‘how’ and ‘why’ this study if valid. Guess not, you just have ‘beliefs’ without needing evidence.

  188. Ms. Lee, if you want to engage me, I request you address me respectfully, otherwise I am under no obligation to answer your posts.

  189. Bridget- you can’t help but argue.

    I dont care how many credentials Loftus has- it doesn’t give her the authority or the right to discredit or dismiss others abuse.

    anymore than it gives your group the authority or right to discredit or dismiss others abuse.

  190. Jeanette, maybe you ought to upstate yourself on what scientists are attempting to do to the human mind these days. It is far from being “fatalistic conclusions.” Scientists are indeed trying to alter people’s memories/minds to give them a different history, in order to (in their idea of things) “help” people to become less dysfunctional, or “happier” or to erase trauma from their history.

    People suffering from alcoholism need to get to the root cause of their problem -the primordial issue in their need to drink. This can already be done, very safely, very effectively, and without altering their minds, or implanting memories.

  191. This whole thread has become pretty convoluted with personal conflicts and other nonsense.

    I am done here.

    May you all find whatever it is you are looking for….


  192. More research for us to look at from Liz Loftus

    Missouri v. Ryan William Ferguson. Cross examination of Elizabeth Loftus by Kevin Crane, PA, October 21, 2005, p. 2026.

    Well, or being a victim of a vicious animal attack, which is the false memory that was planted by Dr. Stephan Porter in his research.

    Porter’s finding:

    Porter, S, Yuille, J. and Lehman, D. (1999). The nature of real, implanted, and fabricated memories for emotional childhood events: Implications for the recovered memory debate. Law and Human Behavior. 23(5) The memories consisted of the following: getting lost, getting seriously harmed by another child, a serious medical procedure, a serious animal attack, a serious outdoor accident. .

    NOTE: When asked to guess which of the real and false events had not occurred, 90% of the false memory group was able to guess correctly. Porter et al do not report how many of the subjects who heard the “serious animal attack” story said it was false (or true).

  193. And more:

    In the Libby case, a grilling to remember. 10/27/06 Washington Post. Carol D. Leonnig, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/10/26/AR2006102601612.html

    With withering and methodical dispatch, White House nemesis and prosecutor Patrick J. Fitzgerald yesterday sliced up the first person called to the stand on behalf of the vice president’s former chief of staff . . . But when Fitzgerald got his chance to cross-examine Loftus about her findings, he had her stuttering to explain her own writings and backpedaling from her earlier assertions.

  194. ‘Victory,’ vindication: Former priest convicted in landmark abuse case, By Brian Ballou and J.M. Lawrence, Tuesday, February 8, 2005 Online at: http://news.bostonherald.com/localRegional/view.bg?articleid=67460 Kierce [jury member in Shanley case] was unimpressed by defense attorney Frank Mondano’s only witness, a California psychologist who testified she did not believe victims could recover memories of trauma years later. The juror said he found Elizabeth Loftus’ statements “contradictory.”

    January, 2001 at http://www.courttv.com/trials/carruth/011501-am_ctv.html

    The memory expert had trouble remembering the 911 tape she was hired to analyze.

    Here’s she going to attack the credibility of 5 rape victims, all who named the same guy:
    Briggs loses bid to use expert on eyewitness identifications, Seattle P-I, May 6, 1987 http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/archives/1987/8701110515.asp The man accused of attacking several women near Harborview Medical Center suffered a setback yesterday when a judge ruled that the defense can’t use an expert (Loftus) on eyewitness identifications to attack the credibility of five women who have named the defendant as their assailant.

  195. And more fun with Elizabeth Loftus –

    Kahn, J. P. (1994, December 14). Trial by memory: Stung by daughters’ claims of abuse, a writer lashes back. Boston Globe , p. 80.

    “I feel like Oskar Schindler, “ Loftus muses, referring to the German financier who rescued doomed Jews from the Nazis. ‘There is this desperate drive to work as fast as I can.”

    Loftus, E. (1998, April 27). Testimony. Rodriguez et al. v. Perez et al. King County Superior Court Cause No.: 98-2-07404-3

    Q. And isn’t it true that you have, uh, identified yourself, uh, as somewhat of a crusader for what we refer to as the falsely accused?

    A. Uh, I do care an awful lot about the falsely accused, yes.

    Q. And haven’t you made public statements and referred to yourself as the Oscar Schindler of [the] falsely accused?

    A. That, that is absolutely false. It’s been taken out context and distorted.

    Q. So you don’t, you don’t regard yourself in that light, is that correct?

    A. Well, if you’d like the truth of exactly what I said, I’d be happy to provide that.

    Q. I’ll let Mr. Beecher delve into that.

  196. Two for you here:

    Witnesses influence each even from separate rooms

    Inquiry Regarding Thomas Sophonow, “Problems Noted by Dr. Loftus,” at http://angel-diaz-florida.blogspot.com/2006/12/inquiry-regarding-thomas-sophonow.html (December 2, 2006). For example, [Loftus] testified that when, as here, there are multiple witnesses who participated in the preparation of a composite drawing, those witnesses have an opportunity to influence one another. They often inadvertently supply each other with erroneous information. This is true even if they are not together in the room when the composite is being prepared. This, she noted, created problems with the identification made by Mrs. Janower. (Inquiry, Vol. 51, pages 8947-8949).

    And here is another


    “Why do people do this? There’s an obvious benefit,” says Elizabeth Loftus, a professor of psychology at the University of California at Irvine who is famous for her critical work on the recovered memories of alleged sexual-abuse victims. “It may not be immediately financial. But certainly being bathed in a love bath of attention and affection is a lot of benefit for a lot of people.”

    Yeah the money helps – just saying…

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