In Reply to: very good questions posted by Acheick on January 24, 2003 at 07:57:40:
I think levels of guilt/responsibility are definitely different with first gen exers. Some were much more deeply involved with the "machine" of the Family and MUST shoulder a greater level of responsibility -- yes, and blame if you will. I can certainly see how people like Goth and MV were more victims than perpetrators of the Family system, did not deeply damage others and CAN legitimately say, "Hey! Don't lay all that guilt on me! I need healing to stay sane and try to get some measure of wholeness."
Then there are people like you, Achieck, who did in some measure hurt your own children by continuing to stay in the Family longer than you should have. YOUR primary guilt/responsibility therefore is directly to your own children -- not to every SGA in the Family. And from what I have seen over the months, you HAVE worked through that process, your children have personally, repeatedly forgiven you and you can legitimately say, "I have worth. I deserve healing."
Other people were more peronally involved in leadership, WS, or other positions of responsibility and must work out their level of responsibility/guilt themselves. And yes, some definitely MUST bear a larger responsibility of ownership for the evil that happened overall.
We simply canNOT, in my opinion, have a cookie-cutter mold that we stamp all FGAs with. Even Jules has said that no SGAs have any issues with Ray, for eg, and here he was a leader right in Berg's house, helping make the whole machine move forward. I'm not pointing any fingers at Ray, please don't get that opinion, but what I AM saying is that you cannot automatically assume that just becuase someone was in leadership even, that they're horribly guilty.
So there are no easy black-&-white solutions. Yes, I would say Ed Priebe and James Penn and others Jules mentioned who worked in WS and perpetuated the machine simply must bear more colletive guilt, and there are many others. We must all work out our own personal situation.